The Alien Factor

After sitting through various badly drawn planets and star fields that comprise the opening sequence we are introduced to Rex Walker (Johnny Walker) and his girlfriend Mary Jane Carter (Eleanor Herman). They are sitting in his car in the middle of a wood, close to the small town of Perry Hill. They are suddenly attacked by an alien monster (Larry Schlechter), that looks suspiciously like a guy in a cheap looking fancy dress costume. It viciously kills Rex, but Mary Jane manages to escape and inform the local authorities, Sheriff Cinder (Tom Griffith) and his Deputy Pete (Richard Geiwitz). Along with Dr. Ruth Sherman (Anne Firth) and her assistant Steven (George Stover) who are conducting the autopsy’s, Sheriff Cinder initially thinks it might have been a large animal such as a bear that killed Rex, and that’s what they decide to tell a journalist, Edie Martins (Mary Mertens) who writes for a local paper. A small group of townsfolk Ernie (a cameo from director Don Dohler), Clay (Christopher Gummer), Richie (Dave Ellis) and Susan (Marie Van Tassell) decide to form a small posse and head into the woods to try and track down and kill whatever it was that attacked Rex, according to them to help the Sheriff out. After about two minutes of searching they find the alien creature, it attacks and kills the men but Susan escapes. The Sheriff becomes concerned and suggests to Mayor Wicker (Richard Dyszel) that they evacuate the town and call in the army. The Mayor says no as an amusement park is going to be built near the town thats going to create a lot of jobs and generate money for the town and he doesn’t want any scandal or bad publicity, and the fact that the films budget wouldn’t stretch to depicting the army probably helped the decision making process along. Then out of nowhere a man named Benjamin Zachary (Don Leifert) turns up claiming to work in an observatory, and to have seen a meteorite land nearby. More townsfolk are killed, it soon becomes clear to the Sheriff that these attacks weren’t by any animal, and Zachary seems to know more than he’s telling. What are these aliens? Where do they come from? Why is everyone in this film so stupid? Will anything exciting happen before it finishes?

Written, co-edited, produced and directed by Don Dohler as Donald M. Dohler (Don to his mates…..), so we know where to place the majority of the blame. Another home made, zero budget, amateur, semi-professional sci-fi horror film that was probably made with friends and family. Most of the actors in this are also in that other piece of Don Dohler crap ‘Nightbeast’, some with exactly the same character names too. Tom Griffith plays the same character in both, as does Richard Dyszel. The script by Don at least has a bit of a story this time unlike ‘Nightbeast’ (1983), three different aliens are being transported across the galaxy accidentally escape on Earth when their spacecraft crashes and they go on a murderous rampage. A sort of alien bounty hunter is sent to kill them. But it’s not very well paced or exciting, and the characters are extremely dumb. One of the characters decides to try and kill one of the aliens by running around the woods on her own with a can of gasoline, not too sure what she was planning on doing with it. When pursued by an alien two characters fall over, instead of getting up and carrying on running they just lay on the floor screaming as the alien approaches, they both have plenty of time to get up and runaway before the alien would reach them but for some inexplicable reason they don’t. Acting is terrible from everyone. Music is awful and Don even put in a musical number about half way through, a band playing at a pub and their absolutely abysmal, my ears are still bleeding. Photography is poor and the continuity appears to have been neglected. Now, lets talk special effects, or in the case of this film should that read unspecial effects? Well, yes it should, the optical effects are awful, almost as bad as ‘Nightbeast’s’. Two of the aliens are just guys in monster suits, bad looking ones too. An insect like alien and a furry alien with long legs (John Cosentino), but in a low budget kind of way their sort of fun. There is also a big slug like alien that is almost invisible and drains peoples life force, the filmmakers use stop motion animation for this alien. Surprisingly it doesn’t look too bad everything considered but when compared to todays CGI effects most viewers aren’t going to be very impressed. Still, that sequence with the stop motion is probably the best part of the movie, and the alien looks OK. It’s just a shame that it’s killed with what looks like a stick, you’d have thought it would have been tougher than that. If you think thats silly, which I do, one of the other aliens is killed with a hi-fi speaker, please just don’t ask. There is no blood, gore, violence or nudity at all, bad move Don, mate. And that final twist ending just totally falls flat on it’s face, by that point I didn’t care about anyone or anything in the film so the ending meant nothing. Not as bad as Dohler’s ‘Nightbeast’ but that ain’t saying much and certainly ain’t no recommendation. Total crap, steer well clear. Thanks a lot Don, I don’t enjoy your films but I do enjoy writing reviews about them.

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