5.9/10
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Alligator (1980)

A baby alligator is flushed down a Chicago toilet and survives by eating discarded laboratory rats injected with growth hormones. The small reptile grows gigantic, escapes the city sewers, and goes on a rampage.

Director:

Lewis Teague

Writers:

John Sayles (screenplay), John Sayles (story) | 1 more credit »

On Disc

at Amazon

2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Forster ... David
Robin Riker ... Marisa
Michael V. Gazzo ... Chief Clark (as Michael Gazzo)
Dean Jagger ... Slade
Sydney Lassick ... Gutchel (as Sidney Lassick)
Jack Carter ... Mayor
Perry Lang ... Kelly
Henry Silva ... Brock
Bart Braverman ... Kemp
John Lisbon Wood John Lisbon Wood ... Mad Bomber
James Ingersoll James Ingersoll ... Helms
Robert Doyle Robert Doyle ... Bill
Patti Jerome Patti Jerome ... Madeline
Angel Tompkins ... Newswoman
Sue Lyon ... ABC Newswoman
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Storyline

Ramon the alligator is flushed down the toilet as a baby and grows into a gargantuan monster by eating the corpses of laboratory animals who have undergone dubious hormone experiments, thus providing all the ecological and social subtext that one could possibly wish for, even if one doesn't normally go for films about giant alligators eating people left, right, and center--which is the inevitable and tragic result of Ramon's decision that the outside world looks rather more interesting than the sewers.... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It's 36 feet long, weighs 2000 pounds, lives 50 feet below the city. Nobody knows it's down there except the people it eats. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 November 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El cocodrilo mortal See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Alligator See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (theatrical cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As in the shooting of this film's main inspiration, Jaws (1975), the mechanical, giant alligator was often malfunctioning. In a few scenes, Lewis Teague either shot around the alligator to build suspense or shot a regular alligator in miniature sets (which is plainly obvious in some shots). See more »

Goofs

In the first shot of the alligators eye, the whole crew is reflected in it. See more »

Quotes

Mayor: And if they traced it back to the company
Slade: You'd be out of a job, for one thing.
See more »

Alternate Versions

One or more extra scenes are said to be included in old TV versions of the movie. In one extra scene, a woman is outside hanging up clothes while her baby is with her. When her phone rings, she goes inside to answer, leaving the baby out in the yard. When a loud crashing sound is heard off screen, the woman gets off the phone and goes back outside. She sees that her back yard is in mess, part of the fence is smashed and flattened, the laundry basket she left out is overturned and she becomes hysterical when she realizes that her baby is missing. She approaches an upturned laundry basket and turns it over and finds the baby. The scene then cuts away. The alligator doesn't attack either the baby or the mother. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Later, Gator... ;=8)
14 July 2000 | by MooCowMoSee all my reviews

Ahhh, one of the classic 80's Guilty Pleasure flicks, right up there with "Humanoids From the Deep", and "C.H.U.D.". Ramon, the cute little baby gator who gets flushed into the sewers of Chi-town eats some dead dogs on super-steroids, and becomes a giant, ravenous walking handbag with teeth. Chicago is terrorized, and only a handful of veteran B-moovie actors can save the day! Robert Forster("The Black Hole", "Delta Force", "Satan's Princess") is our balding, square-jawed hero; Robin Riker("Buffy the Vampire Slayer" tv series, "Dead Badge")plays the snuggly herpatologist; Henry Silva("Chained Heat", "Megaforce", "Amazon Women on the Moon") plays a surly big-game hunter; Michael Gazzo("The Godfather II", "Sudden Impact") is the over-worked police chief; Dean Jagger("Twelve O'Clock High", "X: The Unknown", "Game of Death")is the evil corporate bigwig who gets smooshed in his own limo; Sydney Lassick("One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest", "Shakes the Clown", "Fast Walking")is a twisted pooch purveyor who gets pulverized. In fact, LOTS of people get chomped, stomped, and crushed by the mad gator, but it's all done with wit and enough sense not to take its self too seriously. Udders cowplain that "Alligator" is merely anudder "Jaws" rip-off, but fail to appreciate the film's tongue-in-cheek humor & fun. Penultimate scene of the hungry gator running amok at a garden party is an all-time classic! Cud have been really stupid, but the film benefits from a smart script by John Sayles(w. "The Howling", "Matewan", "Eight Men Out"), and solid direction by Lewis Teague(d."The Lady in Red", "Cujo", "Navy SEALS"). Pretty good fx further cowplimant the moovie. Not a perfect film, by any means, but a great choice to pop in on a dull Saturday night with a greasy pizza & some moo juice! Stop flushing those baby gators down the john!! The MooCow says rent "Alligator" today! ;=8)


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