Night of the Lepus (1972) starring Stuart Whitman, Janet Leigh, Rory Calhoun, DeForest Kelley
There was no limit to the cheesiness in the Night Of The Lepus! A hormone intended to alter the breeding cycle of rabbits overrunning Arizona ranch lands instead turns them into flesh-eating, 150-pound monsters! Stuart Whitman (Eaten Alive), Janet Leigh (Psycho), Rory Calhoun (Motel Hell) and DeForest Kelley (Star Trek) are among the intrepid humans facing off against the behemoth bunnies.
Okay, it’s safe to say that Night of the Lepus is one of those monster movies that are so bad, you watch it to laugh at it. But you have to give the cast credit. Everyone acts seriously, and nobody “phones in” their performance. No matter how silly the premise, or how bad the script is. Kudos to them.
Notes of interest
- In some scenes, you can see human beings releasing or prodding the bunnies.
- The bunnies are cute and adorable.
- Especially when they have jam on their mouths, which is supposed to be blood.
- Oddly, Janet Leigh didn’t want either of her daughters to have minor roles in the movie. She didn’t want them to watch, much less appear, in horror films. Several years later, of course, Jamie Leigh Curtis starred in the original Halloween.
Okay, movie fans. To all of you who like nothing better than to nuke some corn, dim the lights and settle in with cinematic mutations like gargantuan ‘gators, fearsome frogs, awesome ants and monstrous moths, we quote this film: “Ladies and gentlemen, attention! There is a herd of killer rabbits headed this way!” A hormone intended to alter the breeding cycle of rabbits overrunning ranchlands instead turns them into flesh-eating, 150-pound monsters in Night of the Lepus. Stuart Whitman, Janet Leigh, Rory Calhoun and DeForest Kelley are among the intrepid humans facing the behemoth bunnies. They use guns, flames and dynamite to subtract them. But the rampaging rabbits know how to multiply. Can anything stop these hare-y scary monsters?
Cast of characters
- Stuart Whitman (Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines) … Roy Bennett
- Janet Leigh (Houdini) … Gerry Bennett
- Rory Calhoun (I’d Climb the Highest Mountain) … Cole Hillman
- DeForest Kelley (Gunfight at the O.K. Corral) … Elgin Clark
- Paul Fix (The Ghost Breakers) … Sheriff Cody
- Melanie Fullerton … Amanda Bennett
- Chris Morrell … Jackie Hillman
- Chuck Hayward … Jud
- Henry Wills … Frank
- Francesca Jarvis … Mildred
- William Elliott … Dr. Leopold
- Bob Hardy … Professor Dirkson
- Richard Jacome … Deputy Jason
- Inez Perez … Housekeeper
- Roy Gaintner … Walker
- Evans Thornton … Major White