The main characters include an evil federal bureaucrat (George Martin), a police chief (Christopher Curry), a wild-eyed dope-smoking ex-con hippie soup kitchen proprietor (Daniel Stern) and a bunch of 7-foot purple and green guys with glowing eyes and no noses – the C.H.U.D. (the acronym stands for “Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers”).
The C.H.U.D. creep through the New York sewers and emerge from manholes in the SoHo section of Manhattan and feed on innocent passersby.
C.H.U.D also stands for Contaminated Hazard Urban Disposal. When new York City prohibited hazardous waste from being transported through the city, the feds began to store drums of deadly contaminated and radioactive waste in sewers and subway tunnels where homeless people found the stuff in the drums, and it made them all big and slimy and mean.
John Heard co-stars as slovenly freelance fashion photographer George Cooper (pictured above), who – in search of “relevance” and “integrity” – ventures underground to photograph homeless people . . .
With such subject matter, the film is obviously not without humour: Besieged by C.H.U.D. at one point, Cooper’s live-in model Lauren Daniels (Kim Greist) screams from a third-floor window. “Somebody help me” and someone in the street suggests she call Ghostbusters.
Possibly the first film to see NYPD officers issued with flamethrowers – so they can defend themselves against the dastardly Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).
A.J. ‘The Reverend’ Shepherd
Francine the Landlady
Peter Michael Goetz
Shana Lee Farrell
John Bedford Lloyd
Gooney NRC Man