• James Harvey

Film Review - Silver Bullet - 1985


Silver Bullet

Format: DVD Language: English Released: 1985

Director: Daniel Attias

Starring: Gary Busey, Everett McGill, Corey Haim

Silver Bullet is based on a Stephen King story; now before you recoil in horror, given the appalling history of films based on his works and I fully understand your reaction; give me a moment to convince you it’s not half bad.

This film is unashamedly an exploitation film, Daniel Attias doesn’t even try to hide this in his direction of the film. He and his cast, right from the onset, are clearly embracing this and having a lot of fun with it. You too should just let go, enjoy the overly hammed up performances and unashamedly over-the-top gory fun that this film offers.

Unlike some exploitation films, and in recent times a number of massive multi-million dollar blockbusters, the acting from the lead character Corey Haim is very good. He plays young Marty Coslaw who is paralysed from the waist down and confined to a wheelchair for the entire film, although thanks to his anti-hero Uncle Red (Gary Busey), these are stooped up power chairs that resemble classic motorcycles more than your normal wheelchair.

For someone so young and in such a genre of horror as the exploitation sub-genre, his ability to carry a film in such a convincing way is a credit to his acting skills. A cocky, happy go lucky, all American boy is, for once in a film, a joy to watch, even with the other main cast member, Gary Buseys’, great, totally over-the-top, performance.

There is a plot of sorts, albeit the type you could fit on the back of a postage stamp, yet it never seems to matter as you are, right from the start, on board a roller-coaster ride with Marty as he slowly unravels the mystery of who or what is killing his fellow townsfolk in such a grossed out fashion. The fact that I cared so much about Marty, his sister Jane (Megan Follows) and Uncle Red by the final showdown with the werewolf was something I didn’t expected from such a film.

If you are looking for a deep, scary horror film about werewolves, just move along, as you won’t find anything that even remotely resembles that here. If, however, you are looking for an over the top gory, fun, slightly hammy ride you can’t go wrong with Silver Bullet. It never tries to be anything other than a fun film that will, surprisingly at times, pull at your heartstrings and have you rooting for the kids as well as their alcoholic anti-hero Uncle Red.

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