The Suckling (1990)

Well, if Bloody Wednesday wasn’t sleazy enough to get your gears grinding, perhaps you’d be more into The Suckling. A teenager is taken by her boyfriend to a whorehouse to get a back alley abortion, and the fetus gets exposed to toxic waste. It then mutates, traps everyone inside the house using a giant placenta, and then murders anything that it can get its talons on. Once done, it goes back home to mommy’s womb. This is all a story within a story, as told by one doctor to another a week later in the hospital. And guess who still happens to have her little hideous bun in the oven? Oh yeah, teenage pregnancy is nasty stuff.

You get a variety of stuff in this movie: a woman being drugged so her baby can be aborted with a coat hanger, a fetus being flushed into the sewer, women being threatened and abused because they’re prostitutes, murder, suicide, blood spray, a little nudity, a little sexuality, a little gore, and even a rape scene at the end with our comatose heroine. Her kid doesn’t happen to like that though, so the last image of the real movie is a blood spray as baby takes care of the rapists.

Yeah, The Suckling starts out grimy, though I have to give it some credit for transforming into a movie about people trapped together and cracking under the tension, because even if you take out the mutant baby, that’s what most of this film boils down to. Everyone is terrified, and in most cases the worst of their personalities come out in the process, leading to violence, harassment, tears, and even murder. Hell, in one scene, a severed hand crawls around in claymation. I was not expecting that. It didn’t make sense, but I was already watching a movie that causes revulsion, so what am I complaining about?

Once all but mommy are dead, the giant mutant baby then shrinks back down into fetus size and climbs back into its womb with a view. Congratulations, we go right back to grimy with a rape and murder scene. Thanks for ending on that note, movie. Here I was, trying to like you.

While the subject matter will probably turn away…well, most folks, the actual mutant critter is impressive. There is a mutation scene that’s rough watching, but then we end up with a fleshy, fanged horror with hands like spear points and a prehensile umbilical cord. It towers over people, rips through walls, and has disturbingly big eyes and drool-covered fangs. I found myself admiring the design. It’s a creepy-looking critter, with enough animatronic work to make it interesting.

Also, there’s something weird in the credits: a guy outside the whorehouse melts in front of a kid. I have no idea if this was a deleted scene or what, it was just there. What the hell, movie?

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