In the heyday of home video, the days of the VHS vs. Beta war, the video stores and browsing what to rent, horror really found its way into people’s homes in a big way. So much iconic cover art is burnt into my brain from the countless hours browsing the horror section for the next movie to scare me. One cover that I unmistakably link to those days was for the film C.H.U.D. The iconic image of a creature lifting the lid off a sewer is one of the most recognizable of the period. But for some reason that one movie always eluded me. I just never got around to seeing it. So now that Arrow Video has seen fit to release a special edition of C.H.U.D. on Blu-ray, it was about time.
George Cooper (John Heard) was once a prominent fashion photographer but has now taken up a project photographing New York City’s homeless population. When George notices a rash of unexplained missing homeless people, he teams up with Police Captain Bosch (Christopher Curry) to investigate the disappearances. When the culprits seem to be a strange group of mutants living in the city’s sewer system, George must now race against time to stop the creatures and unravel the mystery before the entire city is at risk.
C.H.U.D. really surprised me. I had assumed this would be a much cheesier film than it was. I was expecting a short of Ghoulies type film but it is actually quite well done, fairly serious and features pretty good production value. John Heard is great as are the other cast members including Kim Greist and Daniel Stern, the creature design is very cool and sparingly used to great effect, and the pace is great making it more of an investigative thriller more than anything else. I really enjoyed C.H.U.D. and it was a pleasant surprise for a movie I had 30 years of assumptions about. Definitely recommended.
The new 2 disc special edition features new high def transfers of two cuts of the film, audio commentaries, interviews with key crew, a look at the production design, and much more. For fans of 80s horror, this new Blu-ray of C.H.U.D. is a gem!