Review: Without Warning (1980)

Review by Monkey Fist
SCUM Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

Without Warning alien

I can still remember renting this video (in VHS format, no less!) back in 1982 and it really impressed me then with its visual effects! Arnold Schwarzenegger himself credited this low-budget horror film as an inspiration for his smash PREDATOR. Operating with only a $150,000 budget, Greydon Clark nevertheless manages to put together some memorable but cheesy visuals.

“Without Warning” a.k.a “The Warning” involves a mysterious alien presence lurking in the woods, claiming campers and backpackers with the use of living, tentacled flying discs it hurls at potential victims. The alien spends most of the movie offscreen, throwing the deadly frisbees at people, then harvesting them and storing their bodies in a convenient old shack. In retrospect the alien does look quite silly in full light but the director doesn’t really allow the audiences to get a good look at it. Most of the time, we only get to catch glimpses of it as it stalks its victims and with the overall atmospheric lighting, it does create a certain sense of creepiness for the film.

Without Warning victim

It’s interesting to note that the alien in the film is played by the same actor who played The Predator, the late Kevin Peter Hall. For those of you who’ve followed the 1985 cult TV series Misfits of Science, Kevin Peter Hall also starred in that. He played Dr. Elvin “El” Lincoln, a towering man who gives himself the ability to shrink for minutes at a time from his height of seven-foot-four to eleven inches via hormonal treatments which he activates by pressing a nerve on the back of his neck. Also look out for a very young David Caruso…who ends up as an early alien snack!

On the whole, “Without Warning” feels more like a slasher film such as “Halloween” than a Sci-Fi flick. The only difference is the fact that the killer’s hurling bloodsucking frisbees instead of dicing up its victims with a machete/chainsaw! Regardless the frisbee effects were done pretty well. Could have been more enjoyable if not for the pace.

Without Warning frisbee

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About The Author

Monkey Fist’s fascination with film began in the late ‘70s when he was first introduced to B-classics such as 'The Car', 'Konga' and 'The Incredible Melting Man'. Life might have been very different if he had heeded his mom’s advice to read Enid Blyton novels instead. Seriously, he’s just glad he didn’t! Instead, a lot of time was spent checking out the latest flicks in local theaters or getting updates from the 'Movie News' mag. It wasn’t long before he delved into Japanese anime and Tokusatsu gems like Voltron, Gatchaman and Kamen Rider. Today, he continues exploring and collecting classics from the reel world!

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