Horror Movie Review: Killdozer! (1974)

Killdozer! A sentient bulldozer on a rampage! It’s sounds like such a great b-movie, one that is cheesy, silly and gory. Until you find out that it was a made for TV movie, so gore is going to be virtually non-existent. Then you watch it and see everyone taking it so seriously, it’s almost admirable.

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Directed by Jerry London and adapted from a 1944 novella of the same name by Theodore Sturgeon. Killdozer! stars Clint Walker, Carl Betz, Neville Brand and James Wainwright.

Six construction workers are on a small African island to build an airstrip for an oil drilling company. Many, many years before, a meteorite crashed on this island and time has buried it, until now. While digging, some of the men uncover the meteorite. Not knowing what it is, they try to move it with their bulldozer but a blue light comes out of it and into the machine.

It has been possessed and it’s now a fight for survival. The men must do battle with the bulldozer, but how do you kill a machine?

Lacking the goofiness many will crave when seeing the movie’s title/reading the synopsis, Killerdozer! is a difficult watch. Mainly because it takes itself so seriously, that any fun factor within the movie evaporates. Normally there would be little cause to complain about the detail and depth that is given to the characters in the movie. However, here it’s to the detriment of everything else. The story is more about how the group dislike each other, don’t trust each other and have their own personal issues. In fact, for large swathes of the movie, the bulldozer just isn’t around.

When it is, it drives around looking menacing and occasionally kills someone, always in gore-less fashion. Quickly, it becomes clear, that Killdozer! isn’t going to be the movie you might want it to be.

With that in mind though, it’s certainly not fair to call this a bad movie. It’s well acted, looks good for a TV movie released in 1974 and does have some tension and atmosphere. If you go in knowing exactly what you’re getting, you might find you like it more than you think. The rest of us will have to settle for something like Maximum Overdrive.




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  • Carl Fisher

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Killdozer! (1974)
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