Attack of the Killer Tomatoes! [1978]

Movies with "wacky" titles are almost never any good, and Attack of the Killer Tomatoes! was intentionally made to be an instant golden turkey. Despite that, and the grade-Z production values, this is a regularly funny film. You need to be a fan of the kind of low-budget horror movie it's spoofing, and you need to be very forgiving of the technical ineptness and frequent clunkers, but it works. The story? Well, tomatoes attack, basically. Jack Riley and the San Diego Chicken are in it, and that genuinely alarming helicopter crash you see in an early scene was a real accident. Seen now, the whole ratty affair brings back agreeable memories of the circa-1978 college-movie/midnight-cinema era, when seeing this film was virtually unavoidable. The sequel, Return of the Killer Tomatoes! (with a young George Clooney), is actually an even funnier film. Director John De Bello would continue to squeeze the Tomatoes franchise for years to come. --Robert Horton

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