Friday, May 28, 2010

THE ALIEN FACTOR (1977) VS. NIGHTBEAST (1982)



Okay, I admit to being a huge fan of Don Dohler flicks. My favorite would have to be FIEND (1980). The unique thing about these two films both written and directed by Dohler is that they are the same movie. Sort of.
THE ALIEN FACTOR deals with a spaceship that crashes on its way back to it's home planet with some zoological specimens onboard. Three of them and they are vicious. The small town that they land near is screwed from the get go.
NIGHTBEAST deals with an alien crashing here and laying waste to the local populace. Why? My guess is he was just being a dick.
In THE ALIEN FACTOR we get this mysterious guy who helps the townspeople out. In NIGHTBEAST the townsfolk are on their own.
Of the two productions NIGHTBEAST seems the more professional, polished film.
That's why THE ALIEN FACTOR is the better flick. See, we get three monsters all with cool designs. There are a lot of people in this flick and you can tell they were all working their asses off to get the flick done. Everything about this movie screams amateur, but you can see the love on every frame. Why Dohler thought it was necessary to remake this flick is beyond me. The monster from NIGHTBEAST looks as if it was carved from chocolate and it just came across as lame. We knew why the other monsters were attacking in THE ALIEN FACTOR, they were just beasts. The asshole monster in NIGHTBEAST has a gun and is purposely disintegrating the townsfolk.
A lot of the movies' plot and actors are identical. With NIGHTBEAST Dohler thought it was necessary to adult the film with two different naked women and the sheriff unfortunately getting naked as well. Not a good thing. There is profanity and some of the shoot outs just seem to go on forever.
THE ALIEN FACTOR is fun, exciting and it doesn't matter who's in the room because this is a pretty family friendly monster flick. A flashback to the good old days.
It is always a pleasure to see Dick Dyszel in a flick and he's in both of these as the same character and gets killed both times. The lovely Eleanor Herman is also in both and I think she shows her assets, both of them, to better effect in NIGHTBEAST, but even those aren't enough to make this a better flick.
In the end THE ALIEN FACTOR has that level of cheesy fun that plays well anytime. Filled with multiple monsters and a bizarre plot that has been copied a myriad of times, THE ALIEN FACTOR wins this battle.





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