Sometimes They Come Back
Stephen King (short story), Lawrence Konner (teleplay) and Mark Rosenthal (teleplay)
Tim Matheson as Jim Norman
Brooke Adamsas Sally Norman
Robert Rusler as Richard Lawson
Chris Demetral as Wayne Norman
Robert Hy Gorman as Scott Norman
By Ronnie Angel
“Show him the face!” is a quote from one of my favorite scenes in any horror movie. When you hear this in Sometimes They Come Back, put yourself in the kid’s shoes for a moment and just think how you would feel in that situation.
As you may or may not know about me personally, I am a pro wrestler and my character is “The Greaser”. I get asked all the time if I got the idea for that from Fonzie from Happy Days, or Grease the movie, etc – and the answer always shocks those who ask. I got the idea from watching one of my all time favorite movies Sometimes They Come Back. Maybe I should explain.
I first saw this horror movie was when I was very young, and I was drawn in immediately. The story, timeline, the awesome car, the acting, and the characters are just great, and especially the villains in the movie are some of my favorite villains of all time.
Originally a TV movie, Sometimes They Come Back follows a timeline path that is familiar for a Stephen King film. In the 1950s young Jimmy Norman and his older brother Wayne Norman are on their way to the library to drop off some books. Older brother Wayne decides to take the shortcut through the scary train tunnel and they are cut off and chased down by a group of four local greasers in their hotrod. After some bullying, older brother Wayne decides to fight back which sadly ends in him getting stabbed fatally by the main greaser Lawson (Robert Rusler ofWeird Science). Suddenly a train approaches and young Jimmy takes off with the greaser’s car keys resulting in three of their deaths (one, Mueller, got away) when the train hits. After this incident, we later learn that the family understandably packed up and left town.
Fast forward to the 90s now, where Jimmy Norman (Tim Matheson), who is now a disgraced teacher with anger issues, along his wife Sally and son Scott find themselves moving back to the same town where Jimmy lived in as a child to accept a new teaching job at the local high school. Jimmy has a hard time adjusting, suffering horrible nightmares and flashbacks at first. Soon though, his students begin to be mysteriously murdered one by one and each time one student dies, one of the greasers from Jim’s past comes back as an “exchange student” in his class and begin to torment him. The returned hoods are bent on recreating the incident where they died so that they can set things straight this time and get out of limbo.
Jim tracks down Mueller to help him with a plan to stop the undead Greasers before they kill his family…and before the authorities charge Jim with the murders of the highschool students.
All of the parties involved have to meet in a final showdown in that same old train tunnel. The ending to Sometimes They Come Back is definitely one of the best finales to a Stephen King movie ever, and is not to be missed.
Not only is Sometimes They Come Back a good horror movie, it is just a good movie in general that can be enjoyed even if you are not a horror fan. While not particularly scary or gory by many standards, Sometimes They Come Back is still a darn good movie and I highly recommend it. I just would never recommend the horrible sequels.