“May God bless you. This message was pre-recorded and automatically programmed.” It’s so nice to know they gave it the personal touch. Join your faithful Grue Crew – Doc Rotten, Chad Hunt, Bill Mulligan, and Jeff Mohr – as they check out a nuclear apocalypse as imagined in Chosen Survivors (1974).
Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 171 – Chosen Survivors (1974)
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After being selected at random by a computer to seek safety in an underground bomb shelter on the eve of a nuclear attack, a group of refugees makes a horrible realization: They are sharing the space with a colony of vampire bats.IMDb
- Director: Sutton Roley
- Writers: Joe Reb Moffly, Harry Spalding (credited as H. B. Cross)
- Special effects: Tony Urbano (bat effects)
- Selected cast:
- Jackie Cooper as Raymond Couzins
- Alex Cord as Steven Mayes
- Richard Jaeckel as Major Gordon Ellis
- Bradford Dillman as Peter Macomber
- Pedro Armendáriz, Jr. as Luis Cabral (as Pedro Armendariz Jr.)
- Diana Muldaur as Alana Fitzgerald
- Lincoln Kilpatrick as Woody Russo
- Gwenn Mitchell as Carrie Draper
- Barbara Babcock as Dr. Lenore Chrisman
- Cristina Moreno as Kristin Lerner (as Christina Moteno)
- Nancy Rodman as Claire Farraday
- Kelly Lange as Mary Louise Borden
Chosen Survivor is a movie Grue-Believers will remember as one mentioned more than once by The Black Saint. It took the 70s Grue Crew a while, but they are finally covering it. Chad describes Chosen Survivors as an apocalyptic tale with cool actors that he kind of likes but with which he is also kind of bored to tears. In the end, he was hoping the bats would eat everyone. Chosen Survivors feels like a 70s TV movie to Bill and most of it looked to him almost like it was shot through gauze. On top of that, a fear of bats is not one of his phobias and the inaccuracy in the film’s depiction of vampire bats took him out of the movie.
Jeff thinks the Chosen Survivors has a lot of cool visuals despite the omnipresent soft focus. He enjoys it even though the plot is a bunch of nonsense and found it a little interesting in conjunction with the actual plan the government had formulated in the event of a nuclear apocalypse. The pure, 70s-gold cast is the high point for Doc. Describing Chosen Survivors as more science fiction than horror with reasons to like it, in the end, he admits it’s not very good.
If a group of people locked up in a facility far underground during a nuclear apocalypse while under attack by unnaturally behaving vampire bats is your thing, you need to check out Chosen Survivors. At the time of this writing, it is available to stream from YouTube and on physical media as a Kino Lorber Blu-ray.
Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror 1970s is part of the Decades of Horror two-week rotation with The Classic Era and the 1980s. In two weeks, the next episode in their very flexible schedule, chosen by Jeff, will be Lady Snowblood (1973), complete with swordplay and blood galore.
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