Killer Tomatoes – Trilogy – Film

The iconic Killer Tomatoes movie Trilogy.

“Attack of the Killer Tomatoes!” (1978)

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A government task force, lead by Mason Dixon, is formed to investigate mysterious attacks alleged to have been committed by mutated tomatoes.

This is one of my favorite cult classic flicks, following such greats as Abbot & Costello, Mel Brooks and Monty Python in the parody film genre.   The dialogue is wonderful (even if it’s stiff or forced in places due to the inexperienced actors and low budget).  The effects are inventive and work well, especially in the places where the characters point out the obvious “that’s not blood, that’s tomato juice.”    The gags carry throughout the credits, one-liners, in-jokes and physical comedy.  The musical numbers are, not gonna lie, completely ridiculous.

A wonderfully whimsical movie, though very dated.  It still manages to make me laugh every time I see it.  I gave this 4 Bloody Marys because  it’s movies like this that sparked my love of independent film.




“Return of the Killer Tomatoes!” (1988)

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Professor Gangreen  has been working to improve his genetically enhanced tomatoes, so they appear human,and has a new plan to take over the world.

Wildly inappropriately brilliant music, silly dialogue, hokey gimmicks and cheesy over-the-top characters round out this parody sequel to the first Killer Tomatoes flick. Returning in a small role, is writer and star of Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, Rock Peace, as Wilbur Finletter, a Veteran of the Tomato War, who opened and runs a tomato-free pizza shop with the help of his nephew, Chad, our hero who falls in love with a human shaped tomato, and Chad’s roommate, Matt.  A young George Clooney , as Matt Stevens, really shows off his comedic talent and charisma here.  Karen M. Waldron, as Tara, the tender hearted tomato struggling to find her place in a world that fears tomatoes.  The always worth watching, John Astin, as Prof. Gangreen, mad geneticist trying to improve tomato kind for their next invasion.  Steve Lundquist gives an amusing performance as Igor, Gangreen’s primary henchman who dreams of being a TV reporter.

The film makers knew exactly what they were making and flaunted it in every way they could.  I gave this 3 Bloody Mary’s, I found it silly good fun, but I may have questionable taste.  (I always wished I could get an F.T. toy!)




“Killer Tomatoes Strike Back!” (1991)

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The killer tomatoes and Professor Gangreen are back with a new plan to take over the world.  The professor is incognito as Jeronahew, television personality talk show host broadcasting from his lair atop Crystal Mountain, mesmerizing his audiences.  It’s up to Tomatologist Kennedi Johnson and the zubaz wearing Detective Lance Boyle to stop the new tomato threat and try to resist falling in love.

Still snarky, punny, full of physical humor and a silly soundtrack,  it doesn’t match the originality and wit of its predecessors.  The tomatoes with faces don’t really add  that much and what can you really say about the characters in a parody movie?  They were both flat and over the top, minimally charismatic relying more on gimmicks than quality.  It felt like the filmmakers wanted to update the franchise, though they kept the parody format with social commentary overtones and made a romantic buddy cop flick with killer tomatoes it wasn’t entirely successful.

I gave this 1 1/2 Bloody Marys, I’m glad I saw it, I might be revisiting this flick.



“Killer Tomatoes Eat France!” (1992)

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In part IV of the Killer Tomatoes trilogy, Gangreen has been imprisoned in France when his killer tomatoes break him out, with the help of his trusty side kick, Igor.  While in prison, Gangreen discovered the  prophecy of Nicodemus, foretelling the return of the king of France (who happens to share a striking resemblance to Igor).  Michael, a young American actor visiting France, stumbles across their path and in an attempt to impress the beautiful blonde French country girl, Marie, sets out to foil Gangreen and his Killer Tomatoes newest plot to take over the world while helping to restore the true King of France to the throne.

Where this isn’t as brilliant as the first, nor as original as “Return”, this certainly captures the spirit of both.  A huge improvement following “Strike Back.”   Full of physical comedy, gags (Thank you “Eat France” filmmakers for sticking with practical effects!), music from the original as well as new music, and parody humor, the intent of this film is both obvious and mostly successful.

The only member of the cast that has the strong screen presence, is John Astin, returning as Gangreen, who really shows it off at the end of the film.  Though Steve Lundquist, returning as Igor, gives an entertaining performance. Marc Price and Angela Visser got the job done as our hero Michael and his love interest Marie.  Maybe it is how the character was written, but the self depreciating attitude set the tone for him and didn’t evolve.

I gave this 3 Bloody Marys because I was quite entertained, therefore, the film makers did their job successfully.




The whole cocktail

Go ahead and skip “The Killer Tomatoes Strike Back!”, if you want, and you’ve got a solid punny, parody series that I give 3 Bloody Marys.


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