STEPHEN KING’S ‘SLEEPWALKERS.’ (1992) BASED ON AN ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY BY STEPHEN KING. DIRECTED BY MICK GARRIS. MUSIC BY NICHOLAS PIKE. CINEMATOGRAPHY BY RODNEY CHARTERS.
STARRING BRIAN KRAUSE, ALICE KRIGE AND MÄDCHEN AMICK.
REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©
There are times when I just really need to watch me a nice bit of Stephen King, if you know what I mean. This one was a bit of silly, enjoyable fun, and just what I needed to help me switch off mentally at the end of a long tiresome day.
SLEEPWALKERS is not in the same category as Stephen King’s really brilliant film adaptations of his books. These would obviously include THE SHINING, MISERY, DOLORES CLAIBORNE, IT, CARRIE, CUJO, MAXIMUM OVERDRIVE, SALEM’S LOT and PET SEMATARY, to name but a few. What a fantastic author to have so many great book-to-film adaptations to his name. So jealous, grumble grumble grumble…!
On the other hand, neither is it as bad a film as, say, DREAMCATCHER, which sadly was one of the worst, most distasteful movies I’d ever seen, period. SLEEPWALKERS is a bit silly and nonsensical and unbelievable with more than a few loopholes to its name but, for whatever reason, I still enjoyed it. Maybe I was just in the right frame of mind to appreciate it or something.
Anyway, let’s have a look at the plot. High school student Charles Brady and his mother Mary are the titular ‘Sleepwalkers.’ This apparently makes them ‘nomadic, shapeshifting energy vampires who feed off the life forces of young virgin females.’ Good luck with finding virgins in today’s permissive selfie-taking society, anyway…! Good job this was made in the ‘Nineties when there might at least have been a few of ’em still knocking around.
I’m not an expert on shapeshifters as it’s not really my preferred area of horror, I’ll admit to that straight off the bat. I don’t even know that much about them, to tell you the honest-to-God’s truth. They have the power to change their physical appearance, obviously, and they also seemingly have telekinetic powers and the ability to make themselves invisible or ‘dim,’ when the need arises. That could certainly be a handy power at times, like when you see a friend across the street you’d prefer to avoid. Just invisibilise yourself quickly and Bob’s your Uncle.
This mother-and-son shapeshifting combo also have full-on sex with each other as well, which is as bizarre, gross and yucky as you’d expect it to be, haha. They’ve come to this small sleepy town in Indiana after they made their last place too hot to hold ’em when they killed a young one and drained her of her life force. As they’re not traditional vampires, they don’t suck your blood, they just drain your life force out through your mouth. O-kaaaaay…!
Charles is handsome and charming and quickly gets a pretty local girl, Tanya Robertson, to fall in love with him when he surprises her at the cinema where she works. She’s attempting sexual intercourse with a carpet cleaner at the time, or such is my interpretation of the scene.
Anyway, Tanya is the perfect candidate for having her life force drained so that it can feed Charles and his starving mother, who’s obviously worked up quite an appetite from having all that illegal sex with her son. Charles arranges to take her on a date to the local cemetery to take grave rubbings. Big spender, this Charles, eh…?
The look of sheer bewilderment and horror on sappy good girl Tanya’s face when she realises that the blonde and angelic-looking Charles is not what he pretends to be is worth the price of admission alone. Let the gory fun and games commence…!
I really like Deputy Sheriff Andy Simpson, who drives his patrol car around the area with his big fat kitty-kat, Clovis, dozing in the passenger seat beside him. Clovis is obviously the Deputy Pussy, haha.
There are about a million cats in the film, by the way, because cats are the only creatures who can, literally, ‘see through’ the shapeshifters and can do them lasting harm. The cats are all adorable and do their job really well. Better than some of the human actors…!
My friend and I nearly died laughing at the bit where Crazy Incest Mom was saying to a horrified Tanya: ‘Dance with my son, dance with him…!’ while the lad was dying and rotting in front of their eyes. Yeah, who doesn’t want to cut a rug with a walking corpse…?
Actually, my friend also made an interesting observation on the film as well. She said the film reminded her of arty vampire flick, THE HUNGER, in which the head vampire, a beautiful woman, is the last of her kind and can only generate ‘company’ for herself by turning other people into vampires too.
Charles and Mary (don’t they sound like an old Irish couple?), the Shapeshifters, don’t seem to go around turning other folks into clones of themselves but there’s certainly a strong sense that there aren’t too many of them left in the world. The Mom is hopeful of meeting others of their kind but the son is convinced that there are no more left. It sounds like a horribly lonely existence. I surely wouldn’t want it for myself.
Way to keep a low profile, Bradys, by the way! For a family that’s supposed to be keeping its collective head down, they sure do seem to be going out of their way to attract the maximum attention to themselves. Good job the neighbours all seem to be hard of hearing and don’t notice Mom single-handedly wrecking their town…
Stephen King, the man himself, has a wonderfully funny cameo in the film as the fella whose job it is to keep the cemetery, ‘HOMELAND,’ all safely locked up and everything. It sure as heck isn’t his fault if dirty horny pervert teens sneak in and start using the place for their sinful dirty purposes, dagnammit…!
And, believe it or not, horror legends Clive Barker and Tobe Hooper have tiny cameos too so those are well worth looking out for, especially if you’re a fan of these guys.
Enjoy the film anyway. It’s definitely worth at least one watch. Someone send the strict Sheriff with a hankering for spankering young women round to my house immediately, by the way. His services are urgently required here! And if you get scared during the movie, make sure you keep your pussy (sorry, I couldn’t resist it!) handy for stroking. That’ll keep those pesky boogeymen and boogeywomen away for sure…
AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.
Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, film blogger and movie reviewer. She has studied Creative Writing and Film-Making. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, womens’ fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra’s books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page:
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