Primal Rage (1988)

July 6, 2009 - 5:48am | FrighT MasteR
  Tags: 80's, blood, Bo Svenson, Cheryl Arutt, Doug Sloan, hidden gem, infection, John Baldwin, Luis Valderrama, Mitch Watson, Patrick Lowe, primal rage, rage, Sarah Buxton, underrated, virus, Vittorio Rambaldi

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Vittorio Rambaldi
Patrick Lowe, Cheryl Arutt, Sarah Buxton, Mitch Watson, Bo Svenson, Doug Sloan, Luis Valderrama, John Baldwin

This is an English-speaking Italian film that I'm surprised I hadn't heard of until recently. Especially considering the premise is oddly similar to another more popular genre film. This is pretty much you stereotypical 80's film, with an above-average premise -- the story begins with a college professor, who's conducting experiments on primates in hopes of discovering a way to restore dead brain cells. Instead, he essentially creates some sort of "rage virus" that makes its way out of the lab when a school photographer decides to take pictures of the place. Naturally, the baboon manages to bite the guy before it gets hit by an oncoming car.

The bite obviously becomes infected over time and eventually makes the guy freak out over the smallest things. It doesn't take long before he spreads the virus over to a woman, who then spreads it to a few guys and so-on. Yup, I thought 28 Days Later too. However, the two films do offer a number of differences. For instance, the virus is spread by biting and clawing and seemingly takes days to actually turn an infected person. Also, when they are infected, they don't seem a visceral as the infected in 28 Days Later. In fact, when the three guys make it to a huge Halloween bash they are actually quite calm and take out people one at a time, as if they didn't want to alarm too many people.

Another main difference would be the fact that they also seem to develop superhuman strength, which obviously makes them quite a menacing foe. Although the film is cliché, I still liked it, especially since I was interested from the start and it actually offered some surprisingly decent make-up effects. The acting wasn't too over-the-top and neither was the script. There's a fair amount of blood and gore when the scene called for it and the ending wasn't a letdown. All-in-all, I had a good time with this 80's gem.

The film didn't boost the most original premise, but the delivery was effective enough to keep my interest. The make-up effects were above-average and we're given a fair amount of blood and gore. Check this hidden gem out if you're lucky enough to get your hands on it.

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FrighT MasteR is an avid horror fan / monster hunter extraordinaire, who created and has been running UHM since its inception, way back in 1999.




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