Critters 4

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Critters 4. Rupert Harvey, dir. New Line Cinema / OH Films Production, 1992. Rupert Harvey and Barry Opper, story, producers. Don Keith Opper, Paul Whitthorne, featured players.

C4 is in the line running from Stephen Herek's CRITTERS (1986), an interesting ripoff of GREMLINS (1984; see GREMLINS 2). See C4 for two Critter eggs and Don Opper's character (George) inside a cybernetic / mechanical specimen container insider a spaceship inside a spacestation—for a motif of multiple containment of the organic within the electromechanical. Intertextuality with Alien(s) and A New Hope (plus other Star Wars films) make for other motifs of interest, including humans trapped in trash, metaphically robotic "stormtroopers" (with samurai-like helmets) destroyed by the fiercely organic Critters—plus a despicable Company in charge of the whole operation. Note also a damaged, voice-activated computer that can be gotten around with reverse psychology: telling it to do the opposite of what you want done. Cf. and contrast the deserted spacestation with the one in Don Opper's ANDROID. Similarly, note that the relatively nerdish sorts who can work with the damage computer, and even stupid, antiheroic characers like Opper's George, come across fairly well in C4, while a greedy and lustful male-chauvinist greedy and a handsome authoritarian come across as even worse than a self-destructive drug user. (RDE, 01/05/94)