Movie Review: WATCHERSUniversal Pictures
1988
R

“Remember I told you there were three biological experiments at [unintelligible]: the OXCOM, the dog, and their best animal…it’s me, Cliff. I’m their third experiment!”

Cory Haim, sporting his usual big 80s ‘do, suddenly finds himself in ownership of a stray golden retriever when it jumps into the back of Cory’s pickup. Naming the dog “Furface”, he takes him home and, well, you know. Anyhoo, the doggie has a secret: Seems ol’ furface was part of a secret government project that conducts genetic experiments to create the ultimate warriors. Using special dogs as homing beacons, the OXCOM’s (the horrible killing machines that appears to be a very large and hateful orangutan with terribly deviated septum) will kill every human around the pooch. Basically, it’s the “Hey! I’m a cute doggie! Now say hello to death in a monkey suit!” trick. There was one glitch, though- the OXCOMs hate the canines for some reason, so they kill the dogs whenever possible. As you may have guessed, the dog escaped the secret lab after it was sabotaged by some other government, along with one of the OXCOMs. Soon, people who have crossed paths with the OXCOM start dying at the hands of the furry death machine, and Michael Ironsides is dispatched by another government agency to take out the two genetic freaks and anyone who has encountered the two beasts. So, faced with this fun scenario, Cory takes Furface out to a wilderness cabin and starts using all the survival knowledge he accumulated from various episodes of the A-Team and MacGuyver. Explosions, shooting, stabbing, and the tried-but-true “I’m dead now, turn your back” act bring this tepid mess to its conclusion none-too-soon.

Tell you the truth, I haven’t read the book yet, so I watched this without that baggage. I wasn’t really that impressed with the movie. One has to think how Dean Koontz allowed the Canadians (yes, it is a Canadian movie) to take his book and make it into this horrid piece. Mind you, about the only redeeming quality is the gore, but that alone can’t carry this movie. What boggles my mind is the fact that, regardless of how bad this DTV piece was, it’s spawned two more sequels. Fascinating…

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