Twelve years ago two incidents occurred which bore no similarity until now. After returning from their Florida vacation, the Kendal family decided their pet baby alligator was too much of a nuisance and flushed him down th... more »e toilet. At the same time, Slade Laboratories was conducting secret hormonal experiments with dogs and the dead dogs were disposed of in the city sewer. The baby alligator fed on the dead dogs... and after twelve years its body chemistry took on grotesque mutations. When several brutal murders are discovered, David Madison is put on the case to find the so-called Jack-the-Ripper killer. But this is no human psychopath - it is a ravaging animal-turned-monster bent on destroying everything in its wake.« less
"This flick is a potpourri of great trivia. Star Robert Forster made his mark in "Medium Cool" only to slip into B-movie abyss before being resurrected(and Oscar nominated) by Quentin Tarantino in "Jackie Brown". Co-star Robin Riker would later play Chris Elliott's nemesis in the cult sitcom "Get A Life". The film's perfunctory heavy, Dean Jagger, won an Oscar for "Twelve O'Clock High". Oscar nominee for "Godfather II", Michael V. Gazzo is also on hand here. Sidney Lassick who plays the diabolical pet store owner was in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest". John Ford regular Mike Mazurki has a bit as a security guard. Sue Lyon, the original Lolita, has a bit as a TV reporter. As for John Sayles' script it's intelligent but it's not as witty as it want's to be. There are too many obvious gags like a decapitated sewer worker named Ed Norton or a hospital intercom paging a Dr. Howard. What I felt distinguished the film was Lewis Teague's direction. Teague really knows how to ratchet the scares and suspense. The alligator looked realistically menacing and that compensates for a lot of the flat tongue-in-cheek qualities of the film. On a final note, when are they going to release Teague's shot-in-Philly vigilante flick "Fighting Back" with Tom Skerritt and Michael Sarrazin on DVD?"
A Great B Movie Classic
Greg Anderson | Raleigh, NC USA | 08/14/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This should be right up there with the B Movie greats like "Grizzly", "Anaconda" and "Day of the Animals". Pass the popcorn :)"
"A VERY LARGE ALLIGATOR, WITH A VERY LARGE BITE"......
Patrick Miller | NEW YORK | 10/01/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I remember in Brooklyn N.Y., hearing the commercial for Alligator on am radio in early 1980, and always wanted to see it, but I never got around to it, I finally saw it on tv in the mid 1980s. I must say I wasn't dissapointed in the mid 1980s and I'm not dissapointed with this 2007 dvd rerelease. Great pristine film transfer. Nice dolby 5.1 sound, make Alligator sound in a whole different way on a theatre system. Alligator came out in 1980, during this time the Age Of Gore 1978-1983 was in full swing, so Alligator was one of the gore gems to come out during this Age Of Gore. Alligator was based on urban legend about alligators in the sewar. The year is 1968, and a pet alligator named Ramone gets flushed down the toilet by an angry father. Twelve years later in 1980, this gator has grown to a prehistoric sized 36 foot. Thanks to the gators diet of discarded lab steroid tested animal experiments, it has grown to this enormous size. Alligator writers John Saylesand Frank Perilli and director Lewis Teague makes the viewer aware of the sociol status and economics in society. ex: As you watch this gator wreck havoc through the movie, Ramone( the Gator) starts its havoc in the impoverished neighborhoods and finally action is taken when the gator becomes a problem for the upper class. Robert Forster plays a believable detective David Madison, say what you want about this movie, but Forsters part was played incredibly well. Forsters charachter Detective David Madison was likable, calm collective guy, or a guy who would steal every cent you have. Robert Forster made you believe he was this charachter. Robin Ryker plays a a belivable herpetologists Dr. Marissa Kendall and an attractive love interest for detective Dave Madison. Apearences by Actors Henry Silva and old time western screen legend Dean Jagger added some interesting charachters to Alligator. One charachter that really brought life to this move was Herpetologists Dr. Marissa Kendalls mother Madeline, actress Patti Jerome. Madeline was a fun interesting charachter that may have annoyed you but your interest was kept, watching actress Patti Jeromes great performance. Great production on the soundtrack by composer Craig Hundly. I thought the soundtrack was great for this kind of movie. A facinating interview with Director Lewis Teague opened new light on this B- film, which I'm happy Lionsgate finally released this cult classic. Alligator is good trashy B-film fun, that I enjoy every time I watch. And you will to. If you like movies like Humanoids From the Deep, or Piranha you will enjoy Alligator."
The only GREAT alligator movie.
C. Rutherford | Port Lavaca, TX USA | 03/13/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Sure, this movie is as old as I am and F/X are pretty outdated. So what! Alligator is awesome. The use of real alligators was smart thinking. The fake alligator does not look all that bad, but you can still tell it's fake. The gore in this movie is done pretty well, you get to see a man get eaten whole body and all, body parts, lots of blood, the alligator crashes a wedding and goes on a bloody rampage. Skip Lake Placid if you want to see a good alligator horror movie. This is the one."
Who cares about the alligator, Robin Riker is in this film!!
- Durrkk | Ohio/PA border USA | 12/09/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As the title would suggest, "Alligator" (1980) is a "Jaws" rip-off nature-runs-amok flick, but "Alligator" only plays it semi-serious and is, in fact, a semi-spoof of "Jaws." You'll even hear Jaws-imitation suspense music as the creature approaches and attacks.
THE PLOT: A baby alligator is flushed down the toilet and mutates to great size from eating chemically contaminated dog carcasses in the sewers. A policeman and a beautful reptile expert team up to kill the beast after it starts eating people.
"Alligator" barely runs 90 minutes and is kind of boring for the first half hour, but the last hour perks up and keeps your attention. Unlike "Jaws," which is completely serious and scarey, most adults won't take "Alligator" too seriously or find it remotely scarey. In fact, I busted out laughing numerous times when the creature would attack people. Some understandably compare "Alligator" to "Piranha," which came out two years earlier in 1978, but "Piranha" takes itself a bit more seriously and is more entertaining overall. Actually, as far as creatures-on-the-loose flicks go, "Piranha" is a definite 5/5 Star piece.
What makes "Alligator" a necessary purchase is the awe-inspiringly gorgeous redhead Robin Riker, who doesn't appear until half an hour into the story. After that she's featured prominently. Robin was 28 years old at the time of release but possesses such a mature and classy air (I mean that in a good way, of course) that she seems at least 35.
Since the last hour of "Alligator" is worthwhile and fun I'll rate the story 3.5/5 Stars, even though it can't be taken seriously. Robin Riker, on the other hand, rates 5/5 Stars (actually there aren't enough stars in the universe!); hence, my overall 4/5 Star rating.
Men join in with me: Robin Riker, Robin Riker, Robin Riker, Robin Riker, Robin Riker, Robin Riker, Robin Riker (continue ad nauseam)."