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Dead Heat Details

FULL SYNOPSIS

Although many genre filmmakers have managed to blend horror and humor with great success, movies employing this formula often run the risk of both elements canceling each other out, resulting in a horror comedy that is neither scary nor funny. Alas, Dead Heat is a textbook example of this kind of failure. It details the weird misadventures of a pair of mismatched L.A. cops -- the straitlaced and by-the-book Roger Mortis (Treat Williams) and wisecracking loose cannon Doug Bigelow (muscle-headed Treat Williams alum Joe Piscopo). Their quest is to reach the heart of a sinister crime ring that employs indestructible undead henchmen. In a strange twist, their inept handling of the case results in both cops -- first Williams, then Piscopo -- being killed in action and subsequently reanimated in a secret laboratory managed by the barely seen Vincent Price (whose walk-on role is more entertaining than the combined performances of the two leads). The potential for "splatstick" comedy in the mode of Vincent Price or Peter Jackson's Peter Jackson is defeated by two major obstacles: first, the painfully unfunny mugging of Piscopo, who was unwisely allowed to ad-lib much of his performance; and second, the MPAA's trimming of several minutes from Steve Johnson's sensational makeup effects in order to avoid the dreaded X rating -- including a clever scene involving a zombie go-go girl played by Linnea Quigley. ~ Cavett Binion, Rovi

  • Release date:May 6, 1988

Cast

Treat Williams
as Roger Mortis
Joe Piscopo
as Doug Bigelow
Lindsay Frost
as Randi James
Darren McGavin
as Dr. Ernest McNab
Vincent Price
as Arthur P. Loudermilk
Clare Kirkconnell
as Rebecca Smythers
Keye Luke
as Mr. Thule
Ben Mittleman
as Bob
Peter Kent
as Smitty
Clarence Brown
as Harry Lathamn
Prof. Toru Tanaka
as Butcher
Robert Picardo
as Lieutenant Herzog
Mel Stewart
as Capt. Mayberry
Martha Quinn
as Newscaster
Monica Lewis
as Mrs. Von Heiserberg
Peggy O'Brien
as Jewelry Store Manager
Chip Heller
as Wilcox
Lew Hopson
as Whitfield
Tom Nolan
as Jonas
Steve Itkin
as Freman
Shane Black
as Patrolman
Mike Saad
as Guard
Monty Cox
as Guard
Monty Ash
as Walter
H. Ray Huff
as Cop
Dawan Scott
as Pool Zombie
Ivan Roth
as End Zombie
Ron Taylor
as Shoot Out Zombie
Yvonne Peattie
as Gertrude Bellman
Pamela Vansant
as Lab Technician
Beth Toussaint
as Lab Technician
Pons Maar
as Pool Zombie
Peggy O'Brien
as Jewelry Store Manager
Beth Toussaint
as Lab Technician
Robert Picardo
as Lieutenant Herzog
Lew Hopson
as Whitfield
Steve Itkin
as Freman
Ron Taylor
as Shoot Out Zombie
Tom Nolan
as Jonas
Pamela Vansant
as Lab Technician
Mike Saad
as Guard
Shane Black
as Patrolman
Dawan Scott
as Pool Zombie
Chip Heller
as Wilcox
Prof. Toru Tanaka
as Butcher
Yvonne Peattie
as Gertrude Bellman
H. Ray Huff
as Cop
Monty Ash
as Walter
Ivan Roth
as End Zombie
Mel Stewart
as Capt. Mayberry
Monty Cox
as Guard
Martha Quinn
as Newscaster
Clarence Brown
as Harry Lathamn
Monica Lewis
as Mrs. Von Heiserberg

Crew

Mark Goldblatt
Director
David Helpern
Producer
Darren Star
Screenwriter
Terry Black
Screenwriter
Robert Yeoman
Cinematographer
Ernest Troost
Composer (Music Score)
Harvey Rosenstock
Editor
Craig Stearns
Production Designer
Michael Meltzer
Co-producer
Allen Alsobrook
Associate Producer
Greta Grigorian
Set Designer
Lisa Jensen
Costume Designer
Walt Martin
Sound/Sound Designer
Patrick Read Johnson
Special Effects
Mike Topoozian
First Assistant Director
Mario Roberts
Stunts
Dan Bradley
Stunts
Steve Jacobs
Casting
Patrick Read Johnson
Special Effects Supervisor
Dan Bradley
Stunts Coordinator
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