Directed by Mick Garris. Starring Alice Krige, Brian Krause, Ron Perlman, Madchen Amick. (1992)
REVIEWED By Marc Savlov, Fri., April 17, 1992
Do I really need to waste time telling you how awful the new “Stephen King Movie” turned out? Should I ramble on about how Mick Garris (Critters 2, Psycho IV) has successfully added his name to the seemingly endless roster of directors who had a hand in Stephen King yawn-fests? Is there really any point in boring you to tears with a brief but highly unnecessary plot description? Does anyone in their right mind really give a zombie's butt about this newest cinematic disaster “from the Master of Terror?” Probably not, but what the hey. Touted as the first King film written directly for the screen, Sleepwalkers concerns the carnigraphic exploits of an incestuous mother/son pair of shapeshifting were-nasties intent on bucking the status quo and staying alive in the face of overwhelming adversity. Gee whiz, that's an original idea. Looking suspiciously like a transformed Nastassia Kinski in Paul Schrader's Cat People, these nomadic critters roam across the country, feasting on the life-forces of humans unlucky enough to cross their paths. Although they transform into giant, furless cats when provoked, it seems the only thing that can really harm these creatures are normal cats -- there must be a couple hundred feline extras in this film, and it should tell you something that they turn in the best performances of the cast. Although the incest angle is a neat one, it's about the only original idea in the show: from the creature FX to the stilted dialogue, Sleepwalkers offers nothing new for horror fans to sink their collective fangs into. In fact, the most entertaining thing we're presented with is a boffo cameo scene featuring Big Steve himself alongside genre luminaries Clive Barker, Tobe Hooper, Joe Dante, and John Landis. That's the most interesting thing this film has to offer, and it only lasts 25 seconds. King may be a good (if occasionally schlocky) writer, but when it comes to Hollywood, you'd think he'd have learned by now to give it a rest. Guess not.