Rawhead Rex

Rawhead Rex (1986) - IMDb

Day 4 of the NOFS movie challenge had the theme of monster mash so I went with Rawhead Rex. I hadn’t seen it in over two decades and thought that it would work pretty well for the theme, mostly just because of the titular monster. All that I remembered from the movie felt like a fever dream from seeing it far too young. Turns out that it isn’t great but is a fun watch.

Rawhead Rex was directed by George Pavlou. It was written by Clive Barker and was based on the short story of the same name by Barker as well. It stars David Dukes, Kelly Piper, Niall Tóibín, Cora Venus Lunny, Ronan Wilmot, and Donal McCann. First off, David Dukes isn’t the one that klan David Dukes which is what came to my mind when I first saw his name. This was the second movie where Pavlou and Barker collaborated.

There will be spoilers in the following sections but also you need to see the movie to really know what happens.

Rawhead Rex takes place in Ireland. The titular creature is accidentally let loose after a thunderstorm causes lightning to strike a stone pillar in the middle of a field. You follow Howard Hallenbeck as he investigates religious things around the town. He runs afoul of one of the local priests, O’Brien. Rawhead causes havoc around town, killing multiple people. Howard and his family go to leave the town, but his son ends up being killed after having to stop. This causes Howard to try to find a way to stop Rawhead. After Rawhead baptizes O’Brien by pissing on him, the other priest, Coot, is attacked. The local police are killed in a fiery explosion caused by a hypnotized detective. Rawhead is defeated by Howard’s wife. The movie ends with a weakened Rawhead causing a jump scare.

So, the creature design for Rawhead doesn’t look too bad whenever you see it from a distance. Whenever you see it up close it looks goofy as hell. During the climax of the movie, it looks pretty bad from a distance. The jump scare at the end looks pretty awful too. Like you see the guy that played the monster’s mouth inside the monster’s mouth.

Rawhead Rex isn’t a great movie, but it is worth a watch. You’ll get enjoyment out of watching the movie, whether it be with some help of an outside source. You can watch it on Shudder, among other services. I would give Rawhead Rex 6 evil stained glass windows out of 10.

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