Bad Taste

June 1, 1989 0 By Fans
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The population of a small town disappears and is replaced by aliens that chase human flesh for their intergalactic fast-food chain.

Release Year: 1987

Rating: 6.7/10 (22,144 voted)

Peter Jackson

Stars: Terry Potter, Pete O'Herne, Craig Smith

Derek and his friends must investigate the missing people in a small village. Then they find out its human formed aliens that are really big headed monsters that used all the people in the small village into their snack burgers. Now, Derek must save the day and the world with his chainsaw before the meat eaters strikes the whole planet. Will Derek kill all the aliens?

Writers: Peter Jackson, Ken Hammon


Terry Potter

3rd Class Alien

Pete O'Herne

3rd Class Alien

Craig Smith

3rd Class Alien

Mike Minett

3rd Class Alien

Peter Jackson


Doug Wren

Lord Crumb

Dean Lawrie

Lord Crumb SPFX Double
3rd Class Alien

Peter Vere-Jones

Lord Crumb's Voice

Ken Hammon

3rd Class Alien

Robin Griggs

3rd Class Alien

Michael Gooch

3rd Class Alien

Peter Gooch

3rd Class Alien

Laurie Yarrall

3rd Class Alien

Shane Yarrall

3rd Class Alien

Philip Lamey

3rd Class Alien

Human meat for intergalactic hamburgers


Official Website:
Ultimate Fan Site |

Release Date: June 1989

Filming Locations: Gear Homestead, Okowai Road, Papakowhai, Porirua, Wellington Region, New Zealand

Box Office Details

Budget: NZD 30,000


Technical Specs


(1989 video release)
(DVD version)

Did You Know?


Peter Jackson constructed his own counterweighted steady-cam device for this film that cost only $15.


In several head-on shots of Derek's, car two of the Beatles are missing.


I think this is a job for *real men*!

User Review

Sick Flick

Rating: 8/10

It seems fitting that in the wake of the excellent Lord of the Rings
films, that we should have a look at just what started director Peter
Jackson on the road to being one of the worlds greatest visionaries.
Before LOTR's, Jackson's biggest financial hit was the Michael J. Fox
horror comedy 'The Frighteners', and his biggest critical success being
the haunting 'Heavenly Creatures', starring a then not-so-famous Kate
Winslet. But it wasn't an easy ride getting to be the director of the
most anticipated trilogy since Star Wars. Jackson started small, very
small, and clawed his way up the movie ladder using nothing more than
pure determination and a raw talent for film-making.

Jackson's first feature was Bad Taste, a low, low-budget horror comedy
movie made over two years about aliens killing humans for their
fast-food business back in space. No real plot, no real actors, no real
crew. Only an insane imagination and devoted friends willing to help
out. There's not even much of a script, because what Jackson sets out
to do is sicken his audience with some of the most gruesome deaths ever
seen and make them laugh until the back of their heads fall off. And he

Narrative and plot structure are not on the vile menu here. Instead,
Bad Taste is a testament to sick jokes, low-budget gore and technical
brilliance on a shoestring. Jackson made his own steadicam, crane and
other camera rigs to create the impression of a bigger-budgeted movie
(he fails to do so, unfortunately) and even undertook the task of
making all of his own make-up and prosthetic effects, including
mechanised masks and realistic machine guns. This is an even greater
achievement when you consider just how much gore there is in the film,
but the finale, in which a huge mansion is rocketed into space, defies
the rules of its low budget and minimal crew.

Even the cast were so minimal that the same aliens can be seen, if you
look hard enough, being killed over and over again throughout the film,
and Jackson himself takes on two roles; the unstable Derek and a mad
alien called Robert. In one scene, Derek and Robert engage in a
cliff-top fight with each other, balanced precariously on the edge and
with no indication that one is a body double. Jackson's creativity and
knowledge of movie trickery is undoubtedly on display here, but the
low-rent sickness and bloody gore on display would suggest otherwise.
At first it is hard to imagine that Jackson would go on from this to
directing one of the best films of all time, but when you look closely,
examine just what Jackson could do with no money and no crew, you begin
to realise that a true genius was at work here.

Bad Taste is a delirious testament to the
'just-get-out-there-and-do-it' school of film-making, as that is
literally what Jackson did. Shooting whenever he had the money for film
stock and making props and special effects in his parent's garage.
Apparently, one of Jackson's greatest problems was keeping his actors
consistent in appearance over the two-year period, making sure haircuts
remained the same and that one actor had a permanent five-o'clock
shadow. Bad Taste is true to the spirit of independent film-making, one
man making the film he wants, when he wants and with whom he wants. In
fact, it would never and could never have been made under the
supervision of a studio, and even if it had the spirit would have been
killed off.

Bad Taste works for me because I admire the way in which it is made.
When I first saw it I was in my teens and I liked it because it was a
demented, gruesome, funny film, so maybe the teen crowd is the right
one for Jackson's brain-eating, vomit-spewing, chuck-up-a-thon, or
maybe it's also for twenty-somethings after a night on the lash. Either
way, Bad Taste should be seen as an example that if you want to make a
movie and know how – there is usually a way