Film (1988). New Line-Heron Joint Venture/Third Elm Street Venture. Directed by Jack Sholder. Written by Bob Hunt. Cast includes William Boyett, Kyle MacLachlan and Michael Nouri. 97 minutes. Colour.
A quiet stockbroker goes on a spree in Los Angeles (see California), robbing a bank, and after his arrest beginning to kill people. We learn his body is temporarily occupied by a homicidal slug-like Alien, which moves from body to body but is soon recognizable from its behaviour. Police detective Beck (Nouri) works with an FBI man (MacLachlan) who turns out to be an alien cop in a human body. Finally, after six body changes, the Ferrari-driving alien killer is defeated. The Hidden is a fast-moving, violent, well-made formula film with no intellectual ambitions but an interesting, ambiguous ending. The story is sufficiently close to that of Hal Clement's Needle (May-June 1949 Astounding; exp 1950; vt From Outer Space 1957) as to make one wonder why he received no screen credit. The oddly coupled human/alien cop team was to become an instant film cliché: see for example Alien Nation and I Come in Peace. The sequel, The Hidden II (1993), went straight to video; directed and written by Seth Pinsker, starring Raphael Sbarge and Kate Hodge, 90 minutes. This reprises ten minutes of the original before moving to a time 15 years later, with Hodge playing the daughter of Detective Beck and more evil alien spawning to be prevented. [PN]
see also: Monster Movies.
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