The Blob is a 1988 monster horror film written for the screen by Chuck Russell and Frank Darabont, and directed by Russell. It stars Kevin Dillon, Shawnee Smith, Donovan Leitch, Jeffrey DeMunn, Candy Clark and Joe Seneca. This film is a remake of the 1958 film The Blob, which starred Steve McQueen.
A meteorite crashes near the town of Arborville, California. An elderly transient discovers, within the sphere, a jelly-like substance (the Blob) that attaches itself to his hand. Three high school students, Brian (Kevin Dillon), Meg (Shawnee Smith), and Paul (Donovan Leitch), encounter the man and take him to a hospital. After Brian leaves, Paul witnesses the lower half of the transient melting from exposure to the Blob. As he calls for help, the Blob drops on top of him. Meg arrives to see Paul being devoured by the growing Blob and while trying to free him his arm is torn from his body, Meg is thrown against a wall and knocked unconscious and the Blob oozes out of the hospital.After Brian and Meg have unsatisfactory encounters with the police, they meet at a diner, where Meg tells Brian about the Blob. Brian's disbelief is shattered, when the diner's handyman is grabbed and pulled head first through the sink drain by the Blob. It pursues them to the diner's walk-in freezer, where it retreats because it cannot tolerate cold. After eating the diner's owner and the town's sheriff, the Blob reenters the sewers.
Meg and Brian return to the police station, where the dispatcher tells them Deputy Briggs (Paul McCrane) is near the meteor-landing site. They discover a military operation led by a scientist, Dr. Meddows (Joe Seneca), who orders the town quarantined because of the risk of bilogical contamination from outer space. Brian, suspicious of these activities because of their military nature and sudden appearance, escapes a military van and collects his motorbike.
Meg is taken to town, where she learns her younger brother Kevin (Michael Kenworthy) is missing. Meg learns, he and his friend Eddie (Douglas Emerson) have sneaked into the local theater to see a slasher film thanks to Eddie's usher brother Anthony (Jamison Newlander). The Blob infiltrates the theater and attacks the staff and then the audience. Meg just manages to rescue Eddie and Kevin.
Brian investigates, what is really going on, and eavesdrops on Meddows speaking to his assistant Jennings (Robert Axelrod) and learns that the Blob is a biological warfare experiment created during the Cold War and that the meteorite was nothing more than a satellite, where this experiment took place and which fell because of unforeseen developments regarding this experiment. Anthony then reports that he witnessed The Blob chasing Meg, Kevin, and Eddie into the sewers. Brian overhears Meadows decide to trap The Blob in the sewers, and that he is willing to let Meg, Kevin, and Eddie die to do so. Brian is discovered listening in and evades military personnel by driving his motorcycle into the sewers with the intention of not letting it happen.
In the sewers, Meg, Eddie, and Kevin flee from the Blob. Kevin escapes to the surface by scaling a pipe and squeezing through a grate while Eddie is devoured. Meg is saved by Brian, who confronts Meddows in front of the townsfolk and Briggs. After failing to convince everyone Brian is contaminated and must die, Meddows attempts to shoot Brian, but is killed by the Blob as it drags him into the sewer with one of its tentacles. The Blob proceeds to feast upon the population, proving impervious to the military's attempts to stop it (getting shot multiple times while in the sewer and blown up, which only angered it). In the ensuing panic, the town's Reverend Meeker (Del Close) proclaims the scene to be the prophesied end of the world, when a failed flamethrower attack on the Blob sets him ablaze. Meg saves him with a fire extinguisher, and in the process blasts the Blob with it. The monster backs off, and she realizes that it cannot stand cold.
The surviving humans retreat to the town hall and hold the Blob at bay with furniture-barricades and fire extinguishers, but it is a losing battle, as a result with the Blob engulfing half of the building and devouring Briggs. Brian goes to the town's garage and gets a snow maker truck that has canisters of liquid nitrogen attached. Just as the Blob is about to devour Meg and her family, Brian drives to town hall and shoots snow at the creature, which is angered and knocks the truck over. As the Blob surges toward Brian, Meg lures it away from him towards the canisters–which she has rigged with an explosive charge taken from a dying soldier. She tries to get clear, but snags her foot between two pieces of metal, leaving her dangling upside down. Brian regains consciousness and runs over to free her. The Blob is about to overrun them when the charge goes off, blowing up the canisters and covering the Blob with liquid nitrogen. The creature is flash-frozen, shattering into a mass of crystallized pieces. Moss Woodley (Beau Billingslea) has its remains hauled away to the town ice house.
The film cuts to a tent-meeting church service in a field, where Meeker, disfigured by his burn injuries, is now crazed, preaching a doomsday sermon sounding like the Blob's attack. Asked when the time of reckoning will come, he replies "Soon...Madame...soon...when the Lord gives me a sign", and holds up a glass jar containing a fragment of the Blob, which is slowly moving.
- Kevin Dillon as Brian Flagg
- Shawnee Smith as Megan "Meg" Penny
- Donovan Leitch as Paulerson "Paul" Taylor
- Jeffrey DeMunn as Sheriff Herbert "Herb" Geller
- Candy Clark as Francine "Fran" Hewitt
- Joe Seneca as Dr. Christopher Meddows
- Del Close as Reverend Jacob Meeker
- Paul McCrane as Deputy William "Bill" Briggs
- Robert Axelrod as Jennings
- Beau Billingslea as Moss Woodley
- Michael Kenworthy as Kevin Penny
- Douglas Emerson as Edward "Eddie" Beckner
- Jamison Newlander as Anthony Beckner
- Judith Flanagan as Eddie's Mother
- Art LaFleur as Pharmacist/Thomas "Tom" Penny
- Sharon Spelman as Debra Penny
- Billy Beck as Can Man
- Bill Moseley as Soldier #2
- Erika Eleniak as Victoria "Vicki" De Soto
- Ricky Paull Goldin as Prescott "Scott" Jeske
- Frank Collison as Hobbs
- Jack Rader as Colonel Hargis
- Clayton Landey as George Ruit
- Noble Craig as Puddle Soldier
Screenwriter Frank Darabont first met director Chuck Russell in 1981, while working as a production assistant on the film Hell Night. Before working together on The Blob, the two also collaborated on the script for A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors.
The film was released theatrically in the United States by TriStar Pictures in August 1988. It grossed $8,247,943 at the box office. The film was released on DVD in the United States by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment in 2001.
The Blob received mixed reviews from critics. As of January 17, 2014, it holds a 61% "Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with an average rating of 5.8/10, the same rating as the original.
The film functions as a conspiracy theory film. The threat of the original film was an alien entity from outer space. The remake differs in making the threat a biological weapon, created by a secret government agency. The Blob is closely followed by soldiers and scientists in protective suits. The change reflects the mentality of a more cynical era, product of the government scandals in the seventies and the civil movements since the sixties. The sinister government agents are opposed by rebellious teenager Brian Flagg (Kevin Dillon), a rebel and a "tough guy punk" with distrust against authorities, which shows the change of mentality since then.