Critters 4 (1992)

critters 4 poster 1992 movie review
5.0 Overall Score
Story: 5/10
Acting: 5/10
Visuals: 5/10

Fun actors

Needs more Critters

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Critters 4

Studio:  New Line Cinema

Genre(s):  Horror/Sci-Fi/Fantasy/B-Movie/Comedy

Release Date(s): October 14, 1992

MPAA Rating:  PG-13

critters 4 anders hove crite mouth

The “Eat Them Before They Eat You” approach isn’t really working

Charlie McFadden (Don Keith Opper) wakes up in a future that he never expected.  The Crites are facing extinction and now the last Crites were frozen with Charlie.  The ship was lost in space and a salvage craft called the RSS Tesla has found it.  Unfortunately, the Crites have hatched and an experimental to evolve the species have caused them to multiply rapidly.  Now, Charlie and the crew Albert (Brad Dourif), Fran (Angela Bassett), Bernie (Eric Da Re), Rick (Anders Hove), and Ethan (Paul Whitthorne) are in for the fight of their lives…but the danger might not only be the Critters.

Directed by Rupert Harvey, Critters 4 is a science-fiction horror movie.  Following Critters 3 from 1991, the film was shot at the same time and released straight-to-video in 1992.

Critters was a series of movies that I kind of enjoyed despite their cheap nature.  The first movie was a rip-off of Gremlins, the second film expanded and developed the story (sort of), the third film was largely forgettable (except introducing Leonardo DiCaprio to film), and this movie is largely an Alien/Aliens rip-off.  The films in a lot of ways were like Full Moon features but put together slightly better.

critters 4 angela bassett brad dourif john keith opper

Wait…I just realized…we’re caught in a crappy movie!!!

The story is quite bland.  It starts out interesting (with Crites being endangered and therefor “unkillable”), but then it just turns into Aliens where Charlie is awakened in the future on a boring ship.  Like Alien, the creatures are contained to the ship and the people are trying to survive, but the energy or urgency isn’t there.  The story also introduces the whole scientist and the “evil” Ug, but it doesn’t really do much with it…it is just a hodgepodge of plot-points.

The cast for the movie is surprisingly good.  Both Don Keith Opper and Terrence Mann returned from the previous films, but the real star quality was Angela Bassett who was just starting out when the film was released.  Brad Dourif was already an established actor by Critters 4, and it was a bit surprising to see him in the low-budget entry (especially after his part in Child’s Play).  Eric Da Re appeared in Twin Peaks as the jerky, abusive druggy Leo Johnson (so pretty much this is Leo Johnson in space).  Anders Hove went on to play a vampire in the Subspecies series by Full Moon.

critters 4 eric da re leo johnson twin peaks

I don’t know how, but somehow this is going to end up with a beating for Shelly in Twin Peaks

The movie is rather cheap.  Alien worked because it built atmosphere with the ship which was almost its own character.  The ship in Critters 4 is rather non-descript and cheap set-dressing.  It is dark and grimy, but it doesn’t have spirit.  The Critters remain fun, but they too take too long to show up.

Critters 4 is a “conclusion” to the Critters series which probably shouldn’t have continued past Critters 2 (if you want to argue that it shouldn’t have continued past Critters, I would also understand).  Fortunately, in the age of streaming and unlimited options for viewers and film and television makers, Critters is coming back to TV.  Critters:  A New Binge was originally ordered for Verizon’s go90, but was transferred to Shutter in 2019 when go90 was shut down.  A movie Critters Attack! was also released in 2019.

Related Links:

Critters (1986)

Critters 2:  The Main Course (1988)

Critters 3 (1991)

Critters Attack! (2019)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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