Movie Review: Killer Klowns From Outer Space (1988)

Synopsis: A small town is terrorized by clown-like aliens with cotton-candy-shooting guns and a hunger for human blood.

Who's in it? The movie stars Suzanne Snyder, John Allen Nelson, John Vernon, Royal Dano, Grant Cramer, Michael S. Siegel and Peter Licassi.


Review: This is a movie my wife and I have watched together on more than one occasion. However, when I came across the film on one of our movie channels a couple days ago, I couldn't resist recording it and watching it again. We finished the movie, again, last night and, overall, I was happy with my decision to see it one more time.

To tell you the truth, I didn't realize this movie was nearly 30 years old. Since my wife and I discovered it only relatively recently, I thought it was a much-more-recent (albeit low budget) movie. Now that the movie's age has sunk in, I can only appreciate it more.

The best way to describe this film is, it isn't really scary or funny. It's just very bizarre to the point it is hard to stop watching it once you start. The invading aliens don't just look like clowns, they act like them. They use cotton candy or giant balloons to trap their victims, they reproduce using popcorn and they fly around space in a circus-tent-like ship. It would be really comical if they weren't so creepy looking.

Another thing that helps this movie is the wide range of characters. This includes a pair of brothers (Siegel and Licassi) who can't seem to stay out of trouble and a grumpy police officer (Vernon) who thinks the whole town is out to embarrass him. Their performances keep the movie from becoming too serious and keep it fun to watch.

My only real complaint about this film is I wish it would reveal more about the aliens. At one point, one of the characters theorizes the Killer Klowns visited before and modern-day clowns are based on them (not the other way around). But, while that theory makes sense, it would have better to seen some evidence that proved the theory or gave us a different backstory. Fortunately, the movie was just fine without that information, but it was one of those things that did make me scratch my head a bit.

Final Opinion: If you are scared of clowns, you probably will want to avoid this movie. However, if you're looking for a film with some creepy villains but focuses on being fun to watch, this is a movie that is worth putting on your must-watch list.

My Grade: B

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