The Fog (1980)

The Fog
Director: John Carpenter
Writer: John Carpenter, Debra Hill
Cast: Adrienne Barbeau, Jamie Lee Curtis, Janet Leigh, John HousemanTom Atkins, James Canning, Charles Cyphers, Nancy Kyes, Ty Mitchell, Hal Holbrook
Seen on: 20.5.2016

Antonio Bay is approaching its centennial. The town is said to have been founded on the ruthless murder of a leper colony, a legend that nobody really believes in. But on the evening on the anniversary, a thick fog starts rolling into town. And there is something in the fog that is looking to take its bloody revenge.

I don’t get The Fog’s reputation. With Halloween at least I understood why it was considered a classic [even if I didn’t love it], but The Fog was simply a bad film. Not scary, not impressive, just… bad.


The Fog does have some strengths. Above all, there is the cast that is pretty damn impressive. My personal highlights were Adrienne Barbeau’s silky-voiced Stevie (I wanted to bathe in that voice for real) and Hal Holbrook’s father Malone, but they were definitely not the only highlights. Another bit I really loved was the story at the beginning, where the old fisherman tells the legend of how the town was founded.

I also liked the idea of The Fog that is at once a very visible threat and obscures every actual threat that comes with it. That is a great set-up. Unfortunately the set-up alone isn’t enough, you gotta do something with it. And ghost-zombies with glowing red eyes  just didn’t really do anything for me.


Another problem I had was that I didn’t really connect with the characters apart from Stevie and the priest, maybe – and they were not the most fleshed out of characters [but that probably explains why I particularly liked Barbeau and Holbrook, and vice versa]. I got no sense whatsoever who any of these people were and why I should care about them.

The film just never took off, couldn’t really establish any tension and plot was ridiculous to boot. The special effects weren’t bad, particularly considering the time and the rather low budget for the film, but altogether I don’t see the film’s appeal.

thefog2Summarizing: Watchable, but doesn’t have to be seen.


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