Attack of the Killer Tomatoes!

08/22/2015 15:01

Film: Attack of the Killer Tomatoes!

Year: 1978

Director: John De Bello

Writer: Costa Dillon, John De Bello, J. Stephen Peace and Rick Rockwell

Starring: David Miller, George Wilson and Sharon Taylor



This film begins telling us about Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds. The film states that it was laughed off as not being possible, but then states there was a town where birds really terrorized the citizens. It then states that this film could possible happen too.

We then see a woman in her kitchen. She is doing the dishes and something catches her eye. A tomato rolls out of the drain and then gets out of the sink. It proceeds to kill her. The police investigator thinks she is covered in blood, but it turns out to be tomato juice. We shift to a dining room of a couple. The man drinks some tomato juice and is killed. From this point on, most everything we see is outrageous or is parodying something.

The film then lets us know that things are happening like this all over. The president wants this figured out immediately. The town wants to keep it quiet though. It is decided that a group of no-name scientists and generals will be called in to handle this situation. Also in the area is the president’s press secretary, played by George Wilson.

The man that is called in to head up the investigation is David Miller. With him Sam Smith, who is an undercover specialist, an Olympic swimmer and the final member is an underwater expert. There is another member, but he finishing up another mission.

A committee of senators, lead by Eric Christmas, are called together to help decide what should be done about this. While they are passing out the top secret information, they learn that one of them is missing.

We see that the missing report is in the hands of a local newspaper editor, played by Ron Shapiro. He tries to find someone to cover this story, but everyone is gone. He is informed that the only writer available is a young woman with little experience and is currently doing fashion pieces. Despite this, she is called into the office and given the story; she is played by Sharon Taylor.

Wilson goes to see the president, who is played by Ernie Meyers. We learn that Meyers is incompetent and has done some horrible things while in power, but they are pretty comical as well. He tells Wilson that he needs to go see Al Sklar to help fix their image and get ahead of this crisis.

He does as he is asked, but Sklar is horrible. He has ideas, but they do not seem to be doing what they are supposed to. He also breaks out into a musical number. Wilson leaves with a look of complete shock.

All the while this is going on, the tomatoes continue to attack and kill people. They have tried everything they can think of, but that still won’t stop these fruits/vegetables. Miller does meet the final member of his team; he is played by J. Stephen Peace. Peace is not very intelligent and the whole film he walks around as a paratrooper with his parachute deployed.

Taylor is also trying to figure out the story from these two, but she can’t seem to get anywhere. Smith wears some outrageous get-ups from a revolutionary colonist, Abraham Lincoln, Adolf Hitler and his last task is to dress up as a tomato to infiltrate their camp. There is also a masked man that that is attacking Miller and Peace, but who is he?

Will the tomatoes be stopped before they kill all of mankind? Can they be stopped? What does this masked man want? Is there anyone competent to even come up with a plan to stop them?

I don’t want to judge this film too harshly, because it is a comedy/parody film. I can see how it is poking fun at The Birds or Jaws. I thought there were some things that were pretty funny and some of it was just outrageous. I will give that the concept is humorous as well. I also respect those that made this film since it was low budget, but they made a film that looks pretty crisp despite that.

Now where to start with my issues? The biggest one I had was that this film does not put together a coherent storyline. I would have rated this film a point or two higher, if it had. As someone who likes to write, I like to piece the story together and this film is just so off the wall, it could not be done. I thought some of the jokes were too over the top and I think that is why some of them are not overly funny. The acting isn’t good, along with the action and the effects. Now I commended this film on its low-budget, but it clearly shows in these aspects though.

With that said, if you want to see an outrageous film with your friends to have a good laugh about how bad it is, this one should be near the top of your list. The film is a comedy and there are some funny parts. If you are looking for a film that has a coherent storyline, good acting, effects or action scenes, then I would definitely avoid this one.


My Rating: 4 out of 10