Pulse (1988)

Written & Directed by: Paul Golding


Cliff DeYoung .... Bill Rockland
Roxanne Hart .... Ellen Rockland
Joey Lawrence .... David Rockland

Special Appearances:

Matthew Lawrence .... Stevie
Charles Tyner .... Old Man Holger
Robert Romanus .... Paul
Dennis Redfield .... Pete

Release Dates: Theatrical: March 4, 1988

*Images courtesy at: www.badmovies.org



An 11 year old boy named David Rockland (Joey Lawrence) is looking forward to his flight trip to visit his father Bill (Cliff DeYoung) and stepmother Ellen (Roxanne Hart) in Los Angeles, California for the summer but a house next door was violently destroyed as well as some people electrocuted to death there which was unexplained and the house was boarded up which concerned young David as he discovers that the living room TV acts weird plus it won't shut off.
Also he encounters some strange static on a telephone pole while skateboarding on the sidewalk and a little neighbor named Stevie (Matthew Lawrence) told him about the awful incidents that happened at that house.
David checks out the abandoned house and spots many damaged areas around the house as well as a crazy old man named Holger (Charles Tyner) which frightens David even more.
David is terrorised by the electrical systems going on in the house as they are turning evil by having a vengeful life of their own.
Ellen even suspects this but Bill thinks that they're too paranoid but even he is going to encounter this deadly force.


In the beginning a house with water all over and damaged stuff along with a corpse and good shots on policemen searching the place.
We also have some good interaction at a dinner table with the main characters Bill, Ellen and David.
A good shot on David walking down the stairs and looking mysterious about stuff especially looking at the TV that looked strange.
There's a great shot on him staring at an inside of a dryer and a spark lights up which looked a little spooky.
Good shot on some creepy looking sparks on a telephone pole.
Some good shots on David skateboarding and then looking up at the telephone pole as it looks suspenseful wondering if he will crash into anything.
There's a good conversation between David and Stevie as neighbors which looked nice.
Good shots with David going into the abandoned house looking around and seeing the damaged material inside along with a nice spooky shot on Old Man Holger jumping down from a roof and acting strange towards him.
Good shots on the inside of machines with things melting and sparks showing.
Good shot on David talking on the phone with his Mom with concerned expressions begging her to listen to him which was nicely done.
There's a scene with Bill dragging David in the house with him freaking out not wanting to come in which lacked a little.
We have a good emotional conversations between Bill and Ellen about what is happening in their house.
A great suspenseful moment with Ellen trying to struggle getting out of a shower with hot water attacking her and Bill trying to rescue her and David freaking out.
There's also a nice moment with Bill trying not to break into tears towards David when he tells him about his wife in the hospital.
A good dark shot on Bill going towards the garbage disposer that's on and looking at some sharp glass which makes you wonder if something terrifying is going to happen.
We also have a good shot on him walking down in the basement with some furnace fire lighting up and a screw hitting him and falling down.
A good shot on David staring at the tv with lines crossing and hitting his face along with some ohter terrifying moments in the scene.
A great slow motion with Bill about to fall on the floor where there's water with an electrical wire and David trying to reach his for his hand which makes you cringe big time.
Bottom line is that this film was close to being original yet it borrowed a bit from Poltergeist like with the TV etc. Still it works very well even if it's not a groundbreaking film. Just imagine if your electricity and other things in your house turn out to be deadly and tries to kill you which is an unpleasant thought. Sometimes the plot isn't scary enough but of course this one is rated PG-13 so we can't expect a heck of alot when it's rated like that. A good movie if you're in the mood for the odd suspense and not the total scares but otherwise you may want to try something else.

The acting is in fair taste. Although I was never a fan of Cliff DeYoung's (Bill Rockland) work he seems to do fairly okay especially with his aggressions and emotions too. He reacts well to a screw hitting him when going downstairs to a basement. There's a good reaction with him cutting down the telephone pole with a chainsaw and laughing insanely.
Roxanne Hart
(Ellen Rockland) really delivers with her good sympathetic attitude in the film really delivering her part inside out and does a fine job with her crying and scared emotions too. She
does well acting emotional towards an eccentric old man by asking him some information at the house next door that the terror happened.
Of course we get child superstar Joey Lawrence (David Rockland) as I never found him a great actor when he got into his teens during his teen idol years in Blossom but however he's good when he's a child like in Gimme a Break as he knows his craft playing a typical kid. He does well with his scared and troubled actions. He
reacted well to a dryer spotting some sparks and then had good panicky reactions towards his onscreen father and stepmother. A good reaction on him when someone turns on the garbage disposer. Great reactions on him when he is hacking and coughing in a car in a garage and him panicking trying to start up the car and smashing into the garage doorway. He reacts well staring at the tv with lines crossing and hitting his face.
We have a special appearance by baby brother Matthew Lawrence (Stevie) as he acted with him in many shows and has a great cute and charming attitude. I always found him more talented. He
does well telling someone the story that happened to the abandoned house next door.
We have another small part by an elderly actor named Charles Tyner (Old Man Holger) who does well with his crazy expressions and words whom he reminds me of the Crazy Ralph character from Friday the 13th and one time thought it actually was that same actor.
He does well acting tense. Also in a scene while giving information he does well with his answers on the house acting a little insane
There's also a bit part performance by Robert Romanus (Paul) as a TV repairman and still has that Damone style from his memorable performance in Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

There's some great deep synthesizer music along with some high tones as composer Jay Ferguson truly made it sound spooky for each scene in the film.

Old man: It ain't a thing, it's a signal...... a pulse, kinda like a voice. So what you've got to do is to get rid of anything in your house that might have ears to hear it.