Director: John Carpenter
Producer: Richard Kobritz, Larry J. Franco
Screenplay: Bill Phillips
Novel by: Stephen King
Date Released: December 9, 1983
Keith Gordon as Arnie Cunningham
John Stockwell as Dennis Guilder
Alexandra Paul as Leigh Cabot
Robert Prosky as Will Darnell
Harry Dean Stanton as Detective Rudy Junkins
Christine Belford as Regina Cunningham
Robert Darnell as Michael Cunningham
Roberts Blossom as George LeBay
Rating = 3.5/5 Graves
***may contain some spoilers***
Set in Rockbridge, California, by chance, Arnie Cunningham passes by a beat-up car a buys a 1958 Plymouth, which the owner called Christine. When Arnie’s parents find out, they tell Arnie that he isn’t allowed to leave the car at their house so Arnie brings the car to Darnell’s Auto Wrecking. There, he fixes and restores Christine. But, there may be more to Christine than it seems.
There are few if any blood or gore scenes throughout the film. Many of the scenes depict someone being choked or suffocated by the car, Christine.
The Grave Review
Christine starts with the introduction of credits and nothing but the sounds of an engine rumming. Such a beginning sets the tone of the film and gives it this eerie vibe. To give an inanimate object life in a film takes a lot of creativity. Director, John Carpenter does exactly that. You feel as if the car actually has a personality and feelings. There are scenes where the car will play a song communicating a message to someone or fail to start because she is upset. These subtle scenes each played a part in bringing life to Christine and making the suspense of what she will do next all the more exciting. I guess its true what they say: “Take care of your car in the garage, and the car will take care of you on the road.”
Another positive aspect of this film is the character arch that is placed on Arnie’s character. Arnie quickly transforms from a dorky to a rebellious character when he buys Christine. Towards the end of the film, you can see that Arnie has been completely overtaken by Christine. Even the shade of his skin becomes more pale giving the notion that his obsession with Christine has closed him off from sanity. As such, this arch adds an interesting dimension to Arnie’s character development. However, the performances in this film were mediocre as some scenes which felt a little forced.
What the film lacks in performance, it makes up for in special effects. One of the most impressive scenes is when Christine comes out of the recently exploded gas station. As Christine is coming out, she is hunting her next victim covered in fire. The fire engulfed car then runs over one of her victims. Of course, the scenes that show Christine self-repairing herself is also a really great effect.
Lastly, the pace of the film may seem slow at times. Some of the story just seems to drag once in a while. Nevertheless, Christine (1983) is a fun and entertaining watch. Moreover, as far as car horror films go, Christine (1983) is one of the best.
For the foregoing reasons, Grave Reviews gives Christine (1983) three and a half graves out of five graves.
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