Re-Animator (1985 franchise)

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Promotional poster for Re-Animator (1985 film)
  • Re-Animator (1985 film)
  • Bride of Re-Animator (1990 film)
  • Beyond Re-Animator (2003 film)


Re-Animator is a 1985 American comedy horror science fiction film series consisting of three horror films loosely based on the 1922 H. P. Lovecraft episodic novella "Herbert West - Reanimator (fiction)". Directed by Stuart Gordon and produced by Brian Yuzna, it was the first film in the Re-Animator film series. The original film has since become a cult film. The lead character, Herbert West, is portrayed by actor Jeffrey Combs in all three films.



MPAA Ratings

  • Rated: R (Adult Content, Profanity, Extreme Violence)

Tentacle Ratings

A rough measure of how "Lovecraftian" the work is:

  • SSs__ (Two and a Half Tentacles: a very loose adaptation of Lovecraft's original story)

With Gordon, Yuzna, and Combs involved, you can expect a loose adaptation of a Lovecraft story, fortified with grotesque and over-the-top special effects and horror, very weird sexual situations and adult content, buckets of fake blood and random tentacles, and a strong dose of slapstick and gallows humor; the Re-Animator films definitely deliver all of the above, and can be considered an easy example of the films made by this team. Lovecraft "purists" will probably object to the liberties taken with the original material, but viewers who are willing to buy into this seldom-dull combination of elements (or at least suspend their objections with their disbelief), these films can potentially be a guilty pleasure.

Note: This rating is not intended as a measure of quality, merely of how closely related to Lovecraftian "Weird" fiction the work is.


Review Links:

  • Y.Whateley: The first film is loosely based on Lovecraft's story, subsequent films bear even looser resemblance to the source material; the series as a whole adds a great deal of adult content, sex and nudity, and slapstick comedy that might make Lovecraft roll over in his grave; to be fair, the original story was a black comedy too, so maybe these aren't too far off in spirit from the original story. Nevertheless, I still find the films entertaining for the over-the-top cult films that they are.


RE-ANIMATOR: A dedicated student at a medical college and his girlfriend become involved in bizarre experiments centering around the re-animation of dead tissue when an odd new student named Herbert West arrives on campus.

BRIDE OF RE-ANIMATOR: Doctors Herbert West and Dan Cain discover the secret to creating human life and proceed to create a perfect woman from dead tissue.

BEYOND RE-ANIMATOR: Mad scientist Herbert West is currently in jail after having state's evidence turned against him by his former assistant, Dan Cain. While being led away, a syringe of re-agent falls from his pocket and into the wrong hands, and Bedlam soon reigns in prison when Herbert West is joined by enthusiastic new assistants....

Comments, Trivia, Dedication

Associated Mythos Elements

Keeper Notes

External links, See Also

Between 1991 and 1992, Adventure Comics, a division of Malibu Comics, released two mini-series related to the films:

  • Re-Animator, a three-issue adaptation of the first movie
  • Re-Animator: Dawn of the Re-Animator, a four-issue prequel to the films

Other films by Brian Yuzna, Stuart Gordon, and Jeffrey Combs are very similar in tone, especially: