Fantastic Horror Films of Yukito's room

Fantastic Horror Films

No. 2

Spontaneous Combustion

1989 Directed and Written by Tobe Hooper
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There are many kinds of shuddering death, but being burned alive to die would be one of the worst deaths.

Spontaneous Combustion -- or spontaneous human combustion (SHC) -- means the phenomena in which a human body ignites and burns spontaneously. They are unnatural phenomena that have occurred actually and reported quite frequently in Western countries since old times, though seldom known in Japan. One of the most known cases is the burning-to-death of Mrs. Mary Reeser, which occurred in Florida, U.S.A. in 1951. Though the case was investigated thoroughly by FBI, its cause is still considered as mystery.

The subject matter that pleases mystery maniacs was made into a film by Tobe Hooper, the director of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Lifeforce.

In 1955, an experiment was conducted at the hydrogen bomb test site in the Nevada desert. Young Brian and Peggy Bell volunteer for the subjects of the nuclear shelter Samson and an anti-radiation drug.
The experiment goes successful and the couple is praised as "America's First Nuclear Family" who opens a new era.
Bell who became pregnant in the shelter gives birth to a boy on August 6.
However, immediately after that, the couple cause SHC and die in the flames.
Cut to present day. Sam, the son of Brian and Peggy, grows up without recollecting his parents to be a college professor.
Mysterious death in the flames starts to occur continuously around him. Sam, with his arm beginning to fire as well, soon comes to realize that his life itself is a part of vicious plan...

In this movie, the SHC is described as a side effect of the nuclear experiment. It is, so to speak, "cursed fire" of nuclear. The main character that was born on the same date as the day when an atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima is a psychic with the fate cursed by nuclear, and with a nuclear flame, unconsciously burns and kills people who make him angry. However, he can't control the power and also burns his own flesh.
Nuclear power out of control has nothing else to do but to destroy itself. As I see Sam embody it at last, I can't repress my tears.