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Posted 4th May 2009 at 03:37 PM by Sam@Cult Labs

The Xtro Franchise

Sold as an adult version of ET on it's release in 1983, the first of the series is a British made cheapy about a family man who is returned to Earth by his alien abductors after three years. The unfortunate man is now in possession of ungodly powers...

Appearing briefly on the Nasties list back in the 80s, Xtro has a few shocking scenes such as a pregnant woman who dies giving birth to an adult male, a trick Takashi Miike used in his surreal Gozu film. Fans of big studio Sci-Fi horror like the alien franchise may be a little disappointed by this cash strapped offering but if your a low budget nut like me you'll really appreciate the general unpleasantness of this weird curio.

The Xtro series is a good example of how even the lowliest movie can inspire a franchise, albeit one that scraps the barrel in order to dredge up it's entertainment. After the censor baiting moves of the first, early 80s 'classic', the series lay dormant for a decade until Xtro 2: Second Encounter, a straight Aliens rip-off based in a secret lab.

This lab houses the Nexus Project, a device for transporting people to another dimension. When some scientists travel through they are quickly dealt with by an alien nasty who uses the gate to come to Earth. Will there be gory carnage? I think so.

After the release of Aliens in the late 80s, a glut of Sci-Fi cheapies flooded the video market, many featuring the same piece of generic space ship corridor that could be shot from lots of different angles to create the idea of a big ship. Xtro 2 is in this camp of film making. Low budget Sci-Fi horror that will delight people who love B-movies.

The producers continued to steal shamelessly from other successful Sci-Fi sources with the final sequel Xtro 3, in which the scripts from the X Files were mined for plot ideas, making this link completely obvious by subheading the movie, Watch The Skies. A group of soldiers get sent to an island to set up a military base but find their presence less than welcomed by an alien resident. Lots of Sci-Fi hokum but it's a fun movie if you're feeling undemanding.
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  1. Old Comment
    Pete's Avatar
    According to the book Shock! Horror! Xtro ( along with Shogun Assassin ) never appeared on any official dpp list of nasties.
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    Posted 5th May 2009 at 10:52 AM by Pete Pete is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Sam@Cult Labs's Avatar
    I've read various versions of 'the list' and different police forces listed different movies, so although not an official nasty, it did profit from a brief association, should have made that more clear.
    Comment with Quote permalink
    Posted 5th May 2009 at 01:06 PM by Sam@Cult Labs Sam@Cult Labs is offline
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