Night of the Comet
Fans of ’80s cheese will likely eat up Night of the Comet with a gag-worthy spoon. With its B-movie horror aesthetic, campy Valley Girl dialogue, and shopping montage set to Girls Just Want to Have Fun, the film veritably screams “1984” (in the fun, non-Orwellian sense).
Set in a post-apocalyptic Los Angeles following the titular comet’s cataclysmic brush with Earth – which turns almost everyone into red dust – the film follows the teenage Regina, her ditsy sister Samantha, and fellow survivor Hector as they fight off the zombified denizens who escaped full-on obliteration. ‘Reg’ is a rare breed in a genre film: smart, capable, unapologetically sexual, and self-possessed. Sadly, the movie’s positive representation of ‘otherness’ (including the Hispanic Hector) would shame many made in 2014, especially in horror. Comet is much more of a comedy anyway, mixed with a dash of sci-fi conspiracy and Troma-style schlock shocks. Its style is cheesy and dated, sure, but its outlook is surprisingly forward-thinking. [Michelle Devereaux]