Nightbreed (1990)

Written & Directed by: Clive Barker


Craig Sheffer .... Aaron Boone / Cabal
Anne Bobby .... Lori Winston
David Cronenberg .... Dr. Philip K. Decker
Charles Haid .... Captain Eigerman
Hugh Quarshie .... Detective Joyce
Hugh Ross .... Narcisse
Doug Bradley .... Dirk Lylesberg
Catherine Chevalier .... Rachel

Release Date: Theatrical: February 16, 1990

*Images courtesy at:





A troubled man named Aaron Boone (Craig Sheffer) continuously has nightmares about ghoulish creatures in a cemetary and sees his shrink named Dr. Philip K. Decker (David Cronenberg) about these nightmares. Decker has shocking news for him as he reports to him that half a dozen families were killed in 11 months. Then Decker gives him a new prescription.
While Boone is crossing a road one time he is hit by a truck and sent to the hospital where he meets a crazed patient named Narcisse (Hugh Ross) there as he talks about a lost city named Midian and tells him how to get there.
While he drives up there he waits till sundown for the creatures that are considered the nightbreed to come out since they can't deal with sunlight. He is nearly eaten by one of them realising that Boone himself isnt one of them as he is bitten in the chest.
While he escapes he is then cornered by the police set up by his doctor Decker as he announces that Boone has a gun on him and is shot to death.
Boone's corpse is sent to a mortuary but the bite marks on his chest awakens Boone and he is born again as one of the nightbreed people and returns to the Midian city and is welcomed by the patient he encountered at the hospital.
He is welcomed by the Midians there and then him and his girlfriend Lou Designer (Anne Bobby) tries to put a stop to Decker's evil deeds as he tries to destroy the city of Midian.


In the film we have a memorable mildly campy moment with a married couple Melissa and Lou Rickman sniggling and being silly with one another in the TV room of their home but it doesn't seem funny to watch at all. Also we have their little boy having a hard time sleeping and Melissa talking to him as well as a still moment on her looking around as this was supposed to keep you in suspense that something horrifying is about to happen and a failed jumping moment on the killer in a mask suddenly coming into the picture but good camera shots as well as this moment looking intense and disturbing especially with the little boy witnessing the murder of his parents.
A well drawn in discussion between Aaron Boone and his shrink Dr. Philip K. Decker about his nightmares as this looked nice and calm with their conversations flowing in well and adding a nice mysterious feel as to what will happen later on by how this was all set out.
Also a good mysterious and creepy moment when Narcise talks strangely towards Aaron Boone in the hospital room as the scene's looked perfectly still and well concentrated. Also explains on what he has to do which adds more to the story making you watch for more on what will go on as well as great shocking moments on what Narcisse does to himself which looked tortureous and gruesome as certain gorehounds might find amusing.
Also a nice still moment when Aaron walks through the fields leading to the cemetary as it has a good darkly lit horror feel to it all as well as him falling asleep with some mist and then waking up while we see a cute shot on a boston retriever lickingh his face and then running away to it's owner which is a strange fellow Ohnaka as it adds more mystery as to what the area is all about as well as strange unhuman looking beings mugging him as it adds a bit of campiness acting like street thugs as one of them has a thing for him as fresh meat which has a good sense of powerful moments surrounding all of this.
Also a good moment with the police pitting against Aaron after he runs away from the cemetary as well as Philip approaching him and whsipering to him about what he's going to do and then telling the police he has a gun which makes you cringe about this man having a dark secret. Plus a nice shot on Aaron being shot to death.
Nice shot showing the underground of the mortuary area as well as a ceremony for Aaron being one of them which reveals a cauldron and some decent effects on Dirk Lylesberg's hand touching him and making him one of them as this looked entertaining to watch all of this.
Meanwhile there's good timing when Lori Winston is taken surprise by the masked killer which looked sharp as well as revealing to be Philip as well as good struggling moments on her trying to run away from him at the mortuary as this looked powerful to watch all on what's going on here.
Another great memorable moment when we see a creature suffering from sunlight and Rachel in a doorway asking Lori to bring this creature to her as you wanna feel sorry for the poor little thing. Plus a good transformation on this creature changing into a little girl when inside the area as well as a nice effective moment on Rachel explaining to her on what they are which worked in nicely. Plus we have some great dark intense moments on a flashback sequence with a firey war going on as the effects looked dynamic.
Excellent situation with Aaron changing his appearance when going in a rage as well as trying to attack when the enemies are at hand and trying to rescue Lori from Philip's grasps as all of these moments looked truly energetic.
Nice creepy moment with Aaron being thrown in jail as well as a scumbag officer Captain Eigerman speaking nastily towards him accusing him as a cannibal and kicking him as this looked intense to watch and nicely put into the story.
A mildly funny moment when a doctor checks Aaron's pulse and finds that he has none which seemed to be well written into the story.
Nice effective disturbing moments when someone drags out one of the living things from the mortuary out into the sunlight with a nice suspenseful shot on an explosion showing on what happens to them.
The best is yet to come when Narcisse and his gang comes to the police headquarters to save the day with lots of action fighting and other stuff like that there's some decent humor that involves these moments and can please people who like action in their horror flicks.
Plus some great explosions and other fighting scene's at the morgue as well as good effects on the beings their changing their forms in order to fight the people that are terrorising their areas. Alot of this draws you in greatly. Especially some monsters that were unleashed which looked perfect for a horror flick.
Bottom line: Not too bad by the makers of Hellraiser as there's very similar chemistry with characters in it along with original ideas too the story altogether a whole new premise and Barker is very clever with this piece too. Apart from the horror in it this film would easily be considered a fantasy too. The effects are very well done too. Opens a door at the end for a sequel but sadly this didn't have a big enough following.

The acting is incredibly good as we have lots of talented faces in this film. This marks one of Craig Sheffer's (Aaron Boone / Cabal) most successful film to date as he does well at playing a disturbed type of character who can't shake off his nightmares. He is dynamic all the way through this film. Also shows off his courageous attitude greatly along with his forceful attitude bringing it to a punch too. Know on how to have a good growly aggressive voice as well.
Anne Bobby (Lori Winston) does a nice job with her innocent type of behavior as well as being sharp whenever she needed to behave that way. Plus seemed okay with her emotional attitude. She also does well with her energy when acting fearful and trying to get away from someone when she is being terrorised. Plus shows a great moment on being courageous in other spots.
David Cronenberg (Dr. Philip K. Decker) is very deceiving as an understanding shrink but does great at showing his evil side too. Does well when being serious and speaking towards others with a good mellow and still behavior too. Plus shows his versatality by acting vicious and insane with his scratchy cold speaking too. He also does well with his wicked intensity and showing some great powerful energy when being terrorising.
Hugh Quarshie (Detective Joyce) stood out greatly in his supporting role as a mean lawman offering a total believeable and violent scumbag motive. Defientely offered a nice cold blooded behavior within all that he did here. Makes you feel like hitting him for behaving the way he does as well as offering a nice violent attitude as well.
But the one who stands out the most is supporting actor Hugh Ross (Narcisse) who is terrically comedic in his part and shows great expressions too with great lines to top it all off. He knew on how to act convinginly outrageous with his perfoprmance acting believeably hyper and insane at first. Plus shows off a great courageous attitude when saving the day as he struts this off marvellously.
Doug Bradley (Dirk Lylesberg) really stood out differently compared to his days as Pinhead and in a good way as he offered a nice calmness to the leader of the night breed tribe acting convincing as a man of wisdom and doing well with his ceremony. Offers a great seriousness to his personality.
Catherine Chevalier (Rachel) certainly draws in a nice charming and mellow attitude as well as drawing in a nice mysteriousness to her role and has a nice soft speaking voice. She seems to come across as a socrceress type of being. Also does well when discussing a historical moment. She shows off a nice supporting role to her character.

A woman's face is slashed
A crazed patient tears the flesh off his head
There's a bite mark on Boone's chest
There's a decapitated head of a hotel employee.
There's a bloodbath of redneck corpses in a hotel room.
A fist goes through a sergeants chest
Eyes are plucked out of another sergeant

We have very powerful classical music composed by Danny Elfman who has great action sequences used throughout the film. It sounds very realistic and he is a true legend with his works on this film but of course he worked in many top motion pictures to add to his credit. Alot of great heavy trombone playing, chimes and string pluckings with powerful drum boomings too as all of this really stood out greatly.

Captain Eigerman: You are a freak and a cannibal and you've come to the wrong town.

Narcisse: Never touched a legend before!

Kinski: [having captured Boone] If we eat him, we break the law!
Peloquin: Oh, fuck the law! I want meat!