Monday, March 13, 2017

The Brain Eaters, Slimy Parasites Conquer the World

Icky, slimy, hissing parasites are our villains today.  In 1958's "The Brain Eaters," we have a mix of "Night of the Creeps" and "Invasion of the Body Snatchers."  Though a B movie from the 1950s, many might choose to read lots of social commentary into this film.  Let them, but I suggest you just have fun and enjoy the little creatures, arrogant hunk heroes, a couple of damsels in distress,'s the surprise...Leonard Nimoy!  Yes, Mr. Spock himself is a major part of this exciting science fiction/horror offering.
An alien space craft apparently crash lands in Riverdale, Illinois.  The bad news is immediate as several murders then occur in this usually sleepy town and even more citizens, including the mayor, go missing.  To make matters worse, the U.S. Congress gets involved and Senator Powers (Cornelius Keefe) arrives to lead the investigation.  Square-jawed scientist, Paul (Ed Nelson) studies the ship, but no clues can be found.  He teams up with the mayor's secretary, the lovely Alice (Joanna Lee), who screams well, takes lots of notes, and makes coffee.  The invasion has already started as tiny parasitic insect type things are roaming the town, attaching themselves to the townsfolk and turning them into subservient and violent drones.
As the film progresses, everyone in the town seems to have been taken over by these little buggers, and now they want Alice to join them.  At this point in the story, we are introduced to another damsel, the fair Elaine (Jody Fair).  She's real pretty, screams well, but has no bearing on the plot.  As Paul and the Senator begin to understand what they are up against, twists manifest that offer many surprises about the evil invaders.  Now our team must figure out a way to blow up the ship, kill all the monsters, and save the remainder of the world.
Is our alien ship really from outer space?  Will our fiends get to Alice, and if so, will she be able to scream?  With Senator Powers in town, will ridding Riverdale of these alien parasites give way to an invasion of parasites from the U.S. Senate?  "The Brain Eaters," low-budget as it is, turns into an exciting horror yarn, and eventually we do see lots of the monsters.  Oh yes!  In the interest of avoiding spoilers, I have not mentioned Leonard Nimoy's character, but you'll see lots of him in the second half of the film.  Enjoy "The Brain Eaters," available on YouTube.  

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