80’s Vampires from Outer Space!

Lifeforce (1985) Dir: Tobe Hooper Steve Railsback, Mathilda May, Peter Firth, Frank Finlay

Loosely based on Colin Wilson’s novel ‘The Space Vampires’, The Golan-Globus Cannon empire was at the height of its powers when they released this insanely entertaining slab of sci fi horror.An Anglo US space mission encounters a mysterious alien spaceship riding the tail of Haley’s Comet. Of the crew only Steve Railsback makes it back to Blighty with one of the aliens (euro strumpet Mathilda May) in tow. The naked-for-the-entire-film May then proceeds to break out of the secure facility she’s in and reveals herself to be a gribbly space vampire in disguise and proceeds to turn most of London into slavering zombies. SAS man Cain (Peter Firth) is on the trail replete in roll neck sweater mowing down hordes of undead in his Ford Cortina estate right up to the final showdown on the steps of St Paul’s. With earnest support from Patrick Stewart and a scenery chewing Frank Finlay, this features a great score, brilliantly imaginative production design and a bonkers exploitation plot that the whole cast do a great job of taking seriously. I waited weeks for this to come off loan in the video shop back in the day, and I still hold affection for it now. Simply incredible.

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