In the Californian wilderness, something otherwordly is hunting the few people that are around. No one believes the town's crazy, but it turns out that he has been in the know all along, and when a group of teenagers go there to camp, the truth will be revealed. Small, flying creatures are projectiled towards them, but there is something even worse waiting.
7 years before Kevin Peter Hall played one of the most popular modern monsters in "Predator", he starred in "Without Warning" as a different kind of an alien. It's a movie that didn't do quite as well, despite starring Jack Palance, Cameron Mitchell, Martin Landau and a young David Caruso (okay, that probably didn't help much), and was directed by Greydon Clark of..."Satan's Cheerleaders" fame? Okay, fine, maybe there wasn't much that would give this the status of "Predator" besides some of its cast, and it is so cheesy that the alien couldn't become a modern icon. Yet, "Without Warning" is really entertaining because of these things.
Strange, flying ticks attack the citizens, campers, scouts and scout leaders of a small town in the Californian wilderness. People have heard the stories from an old drunk, but everyone knows better than to believe him! But when a group of youngsters decide to camp there, they're soon faced by these alien creatures. The survivors reach the local bar to get help, but only the town's crazy believes it. The question is, is it too late? And what will happen when the alien that shoots out the bloodsucking ticks comes out to kill? Well, it certainly never gets as tense as my writeup does, but it does come to an entertaining conclusion with a cheesy explosion!
It's hard to watch "Without Warning" and be too judgemental. If you have too much criticism of a movie like this, then you probably didn't know at all what you were getting. It's the fun kind of bad. It's incredibly cheesy but it has all the right intentions. Unlike what we get nowadays, there is nothing ironic about "Without Warning", and that's why it's so entertaining. It's a sincere early '80s alien movie that just didn't have the means to compete against something like "Alien" or, a bit later, "Predator", but I'll be damned if it didn't try!
"Without Warning" has the courtesy of keeping its big papa alien for the ending, which is a good thing because the effect isn't very... effective. However, it is fun to see an alien movie where the alien actually stays with the classic look of an alien! The other effects in the movie range from poor to gooey goodness. It helps to make the movie as entertaining as it is, when we never know what the effect will be and of what quality. I definitely think that the movie overall has decent effects, but it's easier to spot the mistakes on DVD in 2015. Great effects? Of course not, but absolutely decent!
This is the kind of B-movie that makes you miss old filmmaking. While it does have the typical teenage cast, there's a bunch of older cast members that get to shine and that's definitely missing nowadays. They have no problems showing you effects despite not being great - no weird edits to try and hide mistakes that anyone could see anyway. There's just so much about "Without Warning" that might not be fantastic, but that makes it a really charming movie that I'd prefer to rewatch than to watch any recent attempts at alien horror. If you enjoy '80s monster movies then I think "Without Warning" deserves to be seen or revisited!