Friday 30 June 2023

Movie Review: Cujo (1983)

Genre: Monster Horror
Director: Lewis Teague
Starring: Dee Wallace, Ed Lauter
Running Time: 93 minutes

Synopsis: In Maine, New England, friendly St. Barnard dog Cujo, owned by car mechanic Camber (Ed Lauter), is bitten by a bat and infected with rabies. Meanwhile, couple Donna and Vic Trenton (Dee Wallace and Daniel Hugh-Kelly) are navigating family problems: their young son Tad believes a monster lives in his closet, their Ford Pinto is dying, Vic has work problems, and Donna is having an affair. Cujo gets fully diseased and starts attacking people, then Donna and Tad find themselves trapped in a broken-down car at the isolated and vacant Camber property, with Cujo eager to continue his rampage.

What Works Well: Once mom Donna and her young son Tad are finally stranded in the car under the scorching sun with Cujo waiting to pounce and kill, director Lewis Teague finally finds some snarly horror moments.

What Does Not Work As Well: The adaptation of Stephen King's book takes a long time to get going. The uninteresting and overly familiar travails of the Trenton family occupy the first 40 minutes and amount to blatant padding. A lot of coincidences need to line-up for the horror premise to work, and although the dog make-up is appropriately hideous, Cujo is never far from an affable St. Barnard. The editing and special effects animating the dog attacks are always jerky and often unconvincing.

Conclusion: The bark is disappointing, and the bite almost non-existent.

All Ace Black Movie Blog reviews are here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

We welcome reader comments about this post.