Fish-Flavored Baseball Bat

It's a John Cleese reference.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

VHS Vednesday: Monster in the Closet

MONSTER IN THE CLOSET (1986). Directed by Bob Dahlin. Starring Donald Grant, Denise DuBarry, and Henry Gibson.

Quick Capsule:
A PG movie from Troma? Well, Monster in the Closet was a relatively early acquisition for the studio, before they developed their trademark style of over-the-top tastelessness. Instead, this is a gentle, affectionate spoof of '50s B-movies, featuring all the stock characters of the era (intrepid reporter, dedicated female scientist, absent-minded old genius, etc.) versus a deadly but goofy-looking creature (played by Kevin Peter Hall, who would go on to portray a much less laughable killer alien in Predator). Enjoyably silly fun.
Who's Leaving This Off Their Resume?
Monster in the Closet is a veritable who's who of amusing cameos from familiar faces: From John Carradine as a cantakerous old blind man, to Stella Stevens in a gratuitous (but modestly framed above chest-level) shower scene, to Paul Dooley as Stella's ill-fated husband, to Donald Moffat as a gung-ho general, to Jesse White as a crusty newspaper editor. More substantial parts are played by Claude Akins (as the hard-headed local sheriff) and Henry Gibson (the aforementioned absent-minded old genius). However, the ones who are most likely to be leaving this off the resume are two child performers who have since gone on to fame: Paul Walker, in a major supporting role as the brainy son of the Dedicated Female Scientist...and Stacy "Fergie" Ferguson as a bratty victim of the closet monster. Geez, the '80s were a long time ago...



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