Night of the Lepus, The Killer Bunny Flick

night-of-the-lepus


Happy October! I’m resurrecting horror movie articles from my old blog and revamping them. This article is reworked from a 2011 post, and it seemed appropriate since Red Letter Media
recently covered this movie on their “Best of the Worst” program.

I’ll disclose the Star Trek trivia for this movie up-front: Night of the Lepus stars both Paul Fix and DeForest Kelley. Paul Fix played the Enterprise’s Dr. Mark Piper in the second pilot for the original series, “Where No Man Has Gone Before,” and DeForest Kelley replaced him as Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy for the rest of the run. Two Enterprise doctors in one movie! And they share scenes together! And none of them are interesting!

I should love Night of the Lepus. I should adore it. But it won’t let me. It won’t let me laugh at it. It won’t let me admire it. It won’t entertain me on any level. A Western-set monster flick from the ‘70s about titantic flesh-eating rabbits failing to entertain me. I’m thankful Tremors exists, because it gives me the same movie—but good.

I lay many of the faults of Night of the Lepus, aka “The Giant Killer Bunnies Movie,” to when it was made. The timing for this type of picture was off. The movie falls between two eras when it might have made for a fun creature feature. If produced in the 1950s among the slew of rampaging giant mutant films, it would have had a solid cast of B-actors, handsome lab-coated scientists arguing with gun-happy military types, and perhaps some cool stop-motion animation effects. If produced in the late ‘70s, it would have been a nutty Jaws ripoff with loony hicks carrying too much firepower, a corrupt sheriff, an environmental scientist screaming about how they’ve got to stop these rabbits before they destroy the world, and a bloodthirsty hunter wanting to mount one of those humongous hares over his mantle.

Continue reading “Night of the Lepus, The Killer Bunny Flick”