Deadly Friend (1986)

   

Directed by: Wes Craven

Written by: Bruce Joel Rubin
Diana Henstell (Novel)

Starring:

Matthew Laborteaux .... Paul Conway
Kristy Swanson .... Samantha Pringle
Matthew Sharrett .... Tom 'Slime' Toomey
Anne Twomey .... Jeannie Conway
Anne Ramsey .... Elvira Parker
Richard Marcus .... Harry Pringle

Release Date: Theatrical: October 10, 1986

*Images courtesy at: www.headinjurytheater.com

    

 

 

 

Rating:

 

A single mother named Jeannie Conway (Anne Twomey) and her 15 year old son Paul (Matthew Laborteaux) moves into a house with their yellow security robot named BB and are new to the town.
Paul suddenly befriends with a resident there by the name of Tom Toomey (Matthew Sharrett) as he shows Paul around the neighborhood but they run into a nasty old lady with a shotgun named Elvira Parker (Anne Ramsey) who doesn't like people walking on her property. 

Paul befriends a neighbor by the name of Samantha Pringle (Kristy Swanson) as he and his mother discovers that her father named Harry (Richard Marcus) beats her and molests her yet doesn't take legal action as he is the only family member she has.

Well one day they decide to do a Halloween prank on mean old Elvira by ringing her doorbell. Yet, BB seems to go out of control and approaches Elvira then is shot and destroyed but at least Paul still has Samantha to keep him company.

However, after a Thanksgiving dinner at the Toomey house, Harry beats Samantha for coming in late that she falls and hits her head leaving her in a coma and was rushed to a hopital then put on life support in the local hospital, but after a certain amount of time, they pulled the plug on her and she was dead.

Paul and Tom disguises themselves as hospital workers and takes Samantha's body over to Paul's local University so he can use BB's robot microchips in Sam's brain to resurrect her.
However, Paul realises like before BB was destroyed that he couldnt control him that Sam too is out of control as she becomes part of BB's mind and kills the people that caused harm to her but Paul tries and tries to have her under control and nothing seems to work.

 

The film delivers alot of intense and disturbing stuff as well as adding the odd A Nightmare On Elm Street types of nightmares too since this is done by Wes Craven himself
A nice beginning involving a thief trying to break into a car and a robotic hand grabs his neck.
There's a nice scene with Paul Conway socialising with his robot as well as a good shot on Tom 'Slime' Toomey riding by on his bike and wiping out. Then there's a great discussion between them talking about the robot.
Also a nice chemistry conversation between Paul and Samantha Pringle when they first meet.
There's a great moment with the three of them playing basketball and the robot looked funny trying to play too and throwing the ball high in the air as the camera shots looked good on it flying high in the air and then landing at a neighbors house.
We have a nightmare sequence with a good shot on Samantha sleeping in bed and then a creepy shot on her father Henry looking over her about to molest her and she does well by reacting scared.
She looked good stabbing him with a broken flower glass vase and he cackles evilly and showing insane expressions.
We have a good shot on all three characters Paul, Samantha and Tom creeping up at the mean old ladys house at night.
There's a good shot on the robot opening the combination lock to a gate and then Samantha slowly walking up to the house and really tripped out big time after ringing the doorbell and the alarms go off. 
An excellent shot on the robot approaching the house towards Elvira Parker that she destroys an innocent looking robot which is disturbing to watch all of this. A nice shot on Paul crying and acting devastated when this happens.
There's a good setting with Jeannie Conway, Paul and Samantha saying grace at a Thanksgiving dinner.
A good and chilling moment when Samantha enters her house looking around for her father and silently trying to not let him see her wherever he is which gives you the chills with good shots wherever she goes in the house and suddenly it looked good and suspenseful when Harry grabs her and hits her which looked brutal and a good slow motion shooting on her falling down the stairs and bumping her head against a wall.
There's a nice shot on Richard standing on top of the stairs leading to the basement where a fire is happening as well as good close up shots on his face wondering what the hell is going on.
There is a good shot on Samantha coming up from behind Harry after he falls from the stairs with cold expressionless looks and her arms charging towards him.
There's also a nice shot on Elvira opening her curtains looking out and then a good shot on Samantha doing the same thing staring at her.
We have a good moment on Elvira looking around and a nice slow motion of a basketball bouncing her way.
There's an effective moment with Samantha slowly walking towards Tom and he freaks out.
There's a great wrestling moment when Paul tries to stop Tom for leaving his house to call the police along with a good punch in the nose too.
There's a nice shot of a window with Samantha crashing through and attacking.
We see a good take on a bully cornering Paul on his bike and beating him up. Good shot on Samantha walking near a dark alleyway towards this bully with cold expressionless looks.
There's a touching moment with Samantha and Paul acting caring towards one another but then the moment breaks when she is cornered by police officers.
Bottom line is that the film looks brilliantly done for the first half of it as it's a teenage boy with his love for his new loving protective robot as you don't want anything to go wrong
Well the story is quite disturbing anbd sometimes hard to watch with the robot being destroyed and the abusive father too which was strongly done for an 80's horror flick but there's a nice twist that there's revenge involved for both of these matters. However, the story starts to weaken and nothing much comes out of it afterwards with the half human half robot running away from the police in the streets. Yet it was very Frankenstein like with what was all going on.

The acting is quite good for it's time and still stands out well. Lead actor Matthew Laborteaux (Paul Conway) is very adventurous as the kid that  has his robot and uses them to resurrect his friend. He shows alot of dynamic action to his part and brings on tons of energy to it. Does well with his intensity trying to talk to someone by going to the hospital with him when something tragic happens in a scene and is great when he loses it after that he finds out that it's too late to rescue his friend by having the plug pulled on her. He reacts wonderful when he looks surprised to find his friend breathing and being resurrected. He does a good job trying to talk to his fellow actress up in an attic. Really knew how to scream at onscreen police officers on not to shoot towards his onscreen robotic femlae friend near the end of the movie.
Kristy Swanson (Samantha Pringle) does well too as someone trying to be brave about being abused and molested by her onscreen father she does well by reacting scared. Was great by portraying a robot well too being menacing and evil. Really knew how to act brutal towards an onscreen bully.
Anne Twomey (Jeannie Conway) is believeable as a single and supporting mother with good morals to her part bringing it all together for her role.
Anne Ramsey (Elvira Parker) has a good supporting role in the film as a nasty old lady in which she usually played in films as you'd want to stay away from her. She really knew how to be wicked by firing her shotgun at a robot and it looks disturbing. She also really showed a nice shocked and frightened expressions on her face by what she spots out her window.
Richard Marcus (Harry Pringle) had a still and intimidating attitude as an abusive father which came across not too badly. He reacts well at being frightened during a vengeful scene against him.

There's brain surgery being shown a couple times.
Mean old Elvira Parker's head explodes after a basketball is shot in her face.

We have plenty of adventureous keyboard playing by the likes of Charles Bernstein in which he really knew how to belt out the music as well as a funky score for the opening and ending credits.

Sam: He's my father. Sometimes I want to roll a truck over his face but he's still my father.