Halloween-O-Meter: The Blobs
Halloween-O-Meter: The Blob (1958) vs The Blob (1988)
“Indescribable… Indestructible! Nothing can stop it!” Released in 1958 and remade thirty years later, The Blob films follow the residents of a small town as they encounter a strange alien mass that consumes anything and everything it comes into contact with. (Well everything biological that is…) The original film stands with below average (yet not terrible) reviews, despite ending up a box office success compared to its minimal budget. The remake saw a similar reception, however made less than half of its original budget at the box office.
Today we are talking Blobs and Rings! So if sci-fi horror isn’t your thing, hop on over to the our other review as we pit the original Ringu against its remake!
So, if I am being completely honest, this should be an easy review. Would you like The Blob movies? Well do you like sci-fi horror and are you willing to sit back and enjoy some perfectly average movies even though better ones are out there? Now the real question is, which Blob film is better, and which is more suitable for Halloween…?
Both Blob films feature fairly strong effects work for their day, both going totally unnoticed by mainstream awards. The creativity in the 1988 film has to take the lead here, as it grabs the idea introduced in the 1958 film and takes off running! As a horror film, this was the only thing that really set it ahead of the other.
In both films, the small town aspect works well, and the way the films set up the characters is pretty smart. I liked Steve McQueen in the original film better than anyone in the new film, but overall everyone in both deliver fine performances. The original should get a bit more credit for not using the 80s horror movie checklist that the remake follows. However the original also wastes time having Steve McQueen drive a car because he can, so these yet again balance out for me.
As entertaining as both films are, they both borrow from the best of those before them. The original film pulls from 50s sci-fi and simply trades it out for a unique premise, while the 80s one checks boxes that were utilized significantly better throughout the decade. They original film struggles with its tone above all else, introducing a fun, campy theme before- well not offering an overly self-aware movie. The film takes itself seriously outside the credit, which act as a bookends of whimsical whiplash. Of course the remake only adds what it needs to fill its runtime, landing the tone but losing points for originality.
What I am trying to say is, both versions of this film are perfectly fine! The original has its problems that the remake trades out for totally different problems. So the question is, do you like classic 50s sci-fi flicks, or campy 80s horror movies? That’s it. Both feature the best and worst of both genres, but are ultimately a ‘not half-bad’ way to kill 90 minutes. 6/10 for both movies! For once, they might be simply equals.
But here there can only be one! The original The Blob gets Halloween points for being a solid pic when it comes to sci-fi horror. Obviously it’s the original, so die hard movie fans would probably prefer it. You could do worse than Steve McQueen for a Halloween costume. And honestly, the Blob is pretty iconic. And yet, it is not a scary movie. The remake? Yeah it gets a little gross. I mean it’s no The Thing (1982), but it might be slightly more fun than the original thanks to- well being cheesy. I’m going to say that both would be decent watches, but the remake scores just a bit higher here! 2 out of 5 Convenient Fire Extinguishers for the original, 3 out of 5 Convenient Fire Extinguishers for the remake.
So The Blob films? Have you seen either of them? How about both? What do you think and which do you prefer? Be sure to leave a like or a comment below and let us know! And if you liked this review and you want to read more, be sure to leave a like or a comment below letting us know what else we should rank on our Halloween-O-Meter! And be sure to check out our other circular review Ringu vs The Ring!
-review by Ryan Prince