Saturday, February 19, 2005

Mutator (1989)

Mutator is one of those horror movies that features animal rights activists raiding a lab to liberate the animals. As a former animal rights campaigner, this is of interest to me. The movie Food of the Gods II features lab raids as does 28 Days Later and at least one other movie that slips my mind. I'm not referring to Twelve Monkeys, rather a monster or slasher movie. If you know of any similar movies, send me a note.

The activists are kind of stupid, but so are most of the characters in Mutator, such as the guards, the scientists, and the corporate head. I think the film has a slight antivivisection message as well as an anti-corporate message, which is very typical of monster/horror movies. The activists do where leather, which is not typical in the real world, but hey, maybe in the 80's, activists were less consistent in their concepts of animal liberation.

The lab is of course responsible for the creation of something awful that has escape. The corporate head tries to explain that the use of animals is worth it because of the potential benefits for humanity, but the activists are not buying it. Yes they do have a brief debate when they meet up, as everyone tries to escape the lab together. The corporate head also has to explain that creating this horrible killer beast may be unfortunate, but that too is a small sacrifice to make for the valuable life saving research. Nobody buys that one. This guy also gets painted as corrupt, lying to the press, and making the keeping of company secrets a priority over everyone's survival. He puts the laboratory under automatic lockdown until 7 AM, trapping all the characters inside with the monster.

Mutator directed by John R. Bowey, staring Brion James, from Prism Video who put out a lot of good stuff. The box cover here is little lame and the title, 'Mutator', is awfully forgettable.

So how about the movie? Not so great. The kills are pretty poor. The characters are ok, none of their lines are very memorable. I was not clear if there was one creature, two, or three, or maybe a whole litter. Litter? Yes, and this is not much of a spoiler because anyone can catch the hints early on in the film, the monster has a muscular furry body (like a werewolf), but with a large cat's head. Yeah, it's goofy looking and scene where it or they die is just a giant explosion. Could it be that the creatures lived?

One note, the background music, an ominous low piano key followed by a mechanical inhalation sound, was very familiar. I swear I've heard it in another movie. If anyone can figure out what movie it might be, I'd be very impressed and bestow upon them the title of 'horror ace', which you probably deserve alone for just having seen Mutator.

links and blogs for animal rights - If they are strange to you, keep in mind that they are aimed at other vegans, who are like you in most ways, but are just more used to these concepts.

The Veg Blog

another one -
Vegan Freaks

Erin Pavlina's Vegan Blog - This one is of interest because it discusses the episode with the vegan family on the reality tv show Trading Spouses. I saw some of one of these episodes with the vegans and turned it off in disgust. How anyone would think that this show would be a good forum to showcase animal rights, I don't know. The producers edit that crap to make everyone look like idiots. Word is that vegans everywhere thought this episode was a PR disaster. I heard there was a vegan on Ted Nugent's reality show and they took a beating too. People need to realize that the shows can make you look anyway the editor wants you to look and the mainstream media, no matter how liberal it may appear (save for Nugent), does not like the idea of giving up meat.

stop huntington animal cruelty - last I checked, and it was a while ago, this was what all the animal activist kids were into, the only campaign they were paying attention too.
Just so you know, I am cynical, but I do believe that people should go vegan for the animals and that animal research is wrong.

link about movies

widescreen and fullscreen - what you did not know about the formats and movies in general, really...


Blogger Patrick said...

This reminded me I kept meaning to ask you if you had seen 'Lethal Dose' a similar sounding moving, staring a former spice girl(I found this out after I saw it).

I figured it would be yet another movie vilainizing AR activists.. and after thinking I was wrong for a moment.. was quickly proven right.

There were posts on our local list about the producers contacting Evelyn Kimber about vegans for that show- it was a big deal for a while- everyone refused.

But I heard the crazy bitch they had on the show ate alligator? I don't think that is just editing to make vegans look crazy.

10:28 PM  
Blogger Sam Costello said...

Warren - If you haven't seen it, you ought to check out Larry Fessenden's first horror feature film, No Telling. It's a pro-animal rights eco-horror movie. Good stuff.

Plus, Fessenden later wrote a book about an animal-friendly, ethical guide to filmmaking. Interesting guy.

9:51 PM  

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