They Live (1988)

Mike Matei / October 13th, 2014

Roddy Piper has to lay the smackdown on some alien scum, in this tribute to 50’s B-movies. The X-ray glasses were referenced in the NES game Bart Vs. The Space Mutants.


  • Don Skiver

    October 13, 2014 at 6:05 am

    Oh shit! This one is a fucking classic! Excellent choice James!

  • trik

    October 13, 2014 at 6:29 am

    one of my favorite movies of all time !

    • trik

      October 13, 2014 at 6:31 am

      i love the mood in that film – carpenter is so great!

  • October 13, 2014 at 6:34 am

    Best movie of all time

    • October 13, 2014 at 6:39 am

      PS- thanks for posting this so that when I woke up at 5am with explosive death diarreah and my stomach sounding like a toilet flushing over and over again and being audible across the entire room waking up my friend, that I had something to watch for three minutes. Fucking can of hormel turkey chili aka can of pure death.

      • October 13, 2014 at 2:25 pm


      • Spencer Goodwin

        October 13, 2014 at 8:27 pm


      • The Kaleidoscopic God

        October 1, 2015 at 3:34 am

        Poetry, man.

  • October 13, 2014 at 7:00 am

    Awesome flick! I was gonna mention the fight scene in the alley being VERY long. Glad you did!

  • October 13, 2014 at 7:24 am

    Yea, I remember periodically checking my watch during that fight scene.

  • assjack

    October 13, 2014 at 7:41 am


  • Stefanoragnopazzo

    October 13, 2014 at 7:43 am

    How did i miss this? Fucking ratings, that’s how! Will repair to this soon…oh man.

  • MetalHorrorNES

    October 13, 2014 at 7:46 am

    Awesome flick! “I’ve to kickass and chew bubble gum…and i’m all out of bubble gum!” I love how they make Roddy Piper look ridiculously ripped/jacked in that poster. Lol

  • rob norton

    October 13, 2014 at 7:55 am

    So Duke Nukem took inspiration from the Hot Rod?

    • October 13, 2014 at 1:00 pm

      That specific quote yes, but Duke was more or less a parody of Action Stars as a whole since he also has quotes from Bruce Campbell and Clint Eastwood among countless others.

  • October 13, 2014 at 8:37 am

    I love dat fkick!

  • October 13, 2014 at 8:41 am

    Anything with Keith David is awesome.

  • frostare

    October 13, 2014 at 9:18 am

    Why do the movie you talk about on my birthday always really great?

  • CrushingC10996WM

    October 13, 2014 at 9:21 am

    Rowdy Roddy Piper is enough to get me to see this, now I want to see it more.

  • uthor

    October 13, 2014 at 9:28 am

    Oh, that’s why Roddy Piper spends an inordinate amount of time kicking your ass in Saints Row IV to wake you up to the alien invasion!

    • uthor

      October 13, 2014 at 9:30 am

      Oh, and Kieth David’s ass, too! Wow, I get it now.

  • October 13, 2014 at 9:31 am

    i met piper at monster mania just back in august in cherry hill he told me he loved me…best moment ever haha. seriously tho this movie is about reaganomics. Ronald is rotting in hell for union busting and giving the rich tax breaks. this movie is probably really happening the elite are trying to kill us off ie chemtrails, fluoride in drinking water, every food being processed and packed with preservatives…egh diseases and drugs and cancer is govt administered. they live addresses this, the elite have a plan. thanks john carpenter and roddy piper (who really believes this as well he was on infowars) for putting it out there all those years ago. fight club is another example

  • Goobian

    October 13, 2014 at 9:33 am

    Roddy Piper was also in the Frogtown series of movies. Allison (Obscurus Lupa) reviewed them. They are ridiculously campy and wonderful as well.

  • October 13, 2014 at 9:35 am

    also when james did his best horror movie from each major category (except slasher?) for alien he picked alien…can’t complain but I’d gone with they live. this is one of the best movies ever made. and those spaceships were more like modern day drones haha

  • October 13, 2014 at 9:36 am

    piper is great in always sunny in Philadelphia too as the maniac

  • October 13, 2014 at 9:38 am

    the doc “nightmares in red white and blue” mention how its based on reaganomics in case people think I’m stupid haha. james didn’t mention the elite were in on the plot sort of like the xfiles movie

  • Deathbringer

    October 13, 2014 at 9:39 am

    This movie is great, totally sci-fi action classic.

  • October 13, 2014 at 9:41 am

    Replace the Aliens with offshore banking cartels and you have real life. There is a lesson to be learned from watching this film

  • October 13, 2014 at 9:52 am

    thank you keith ellwood. bailout was like an invasion

  • DaddyOGITH

    October 13, 2014 at 10:14 am

    the Money says’ THIS IS YOUR GOD 🙂

  • Claude Lilford

    October 13, 2014 at 10:36 am

    They Live, tied with Big Trouble in Little China as the best John Carpenter movies of all time in my opinion, though to be fair I haven’t seen The Thing, Dark Star, Somebody’s Watching Me, Elvis, Ghosts of Mars or Pro-Life yet.
    Why do I also get the feeling that this Monster Madness started as a month dedicated to 80s monster movies that paid tribute to the 50s?
    Maybe Cinemassacre got swamped by the AVGN movie or something, I was half afraid that with the movie he’d be unable to do Monster Madness at all this year.

  • BladeRunner

    October 13, 2014 at 10:42 am

    one of my favorite John Carpenter films, great video!

  • October 13, 2014 at 10:42 am

    Also another fun fact In Duke Nukem They use two famous and badass lines like “Blow it out your ass” and “I have come here to chew bubble gum and kick ass and I’m all out of bubble gum”
    Duke Nukem: “it’s time to kick ass and chew some bubblegum and i’m all out of gum”

  • October 13, 2014 at 10:45 am

    Alex Jones loves this movie.

  • October 13, 2014 at 10:53 am

    I’m surprised you never mentioned that South Park copied that alley fight almost shot for shot.

  • Pablo1989

    October 13, 2014 at 10:56 am

    😀 Yes Yes ive come here to chew bubble gun and kick .SS! but lucky you i got last stick.

  • Alex Row

    October 13, 2014 at 11:15 am

    Fun fact, South Park did a parody of the famous fist fight in this movie in the season 5 episode “Cripple Fight”. They actual use a lot of the same camera angles and everything, funny seeing as it’s Timmy and Jimmy fighting.

  • October 13, 2014 at 11:40 am

    I thought that line came from Duke Nukem.

  • October 13, 2014 at 11:49 am

    this is a great monster madness year. hopefully you do another carpenter movie, the fog!

  • October 13, 2014 at 11:53 am

    “I came here to drink milk and kick ass. And I’ve just finished my milk.” — Maurice Moss, The IT Crowd – season 4 episode 2 – The Final Countdown.

  • Ace

    October 13, 2014 at 11:57 am

    The movie “Stand Up Guys” also gives honor by having the legendary Al Pacino and Chris Walken both reference the bubblegum line during a conversation.

  • low_tone1

    October 13, 2014 at 1:03 pm

    The role of Frank was played by Keith David, who played Childs in John Carpenter’s The Thing. For war movie fans, he was also King in Platoon. I think he was also the father in the beginning of Something About Mary.

    Thank you for reviewing this movie, James. We have all been waiting for this one. You have hinted at it often in the past, and it’s great to finally see it.

  • batratspidercrab

    October 13, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    Holy shit YESSSSS

  • kerred

    October 13, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    Adventure Time paid homage with the same actors providing the voices 🙂

  • October 13, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    Looks like I found out where Duke Nukem got his famous “I’m here to kick ass and chew bubble-gum, and I’m all out of gum” line from. This movie.

  • October 13, 2014 at 2:26 pm

    im sure most horror film lovers have seen this one great choice

    Wheres james and mike monday though you mother fuckers i fuckin was waiting for super castlevania iv part 2

  • Squall85

    October 13, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    Whoa, I didn’t know the Duke Nukem quote is from this movie!

  • October 13, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    That’s not the only game the glasses are referenced… Of course, there are probably plenty of places those are referenced, but first time I heard of glasses revealing the truth was a game called Oxyd by Dongleware.

  • October 13, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    Duke Nukem use the awesome bubble gum quote!

  • Jesse Younger

    October 13, 2014 at 5:06 pm

    FINALLY!!! they live rules! this is probably my favorite carpenter film after the thing.
    best fight scene in any movie ever.

  • dansims

    October 13, 2014 at 5:10 pm

    Never like this movie. Carpenter is a strange director, i can be good as he can be bad, and this one, is very bad.

    • J1a8son

      August 5, 2015 at 10:46 am

      Are you high or just fucking stupid?

  • October 13, 2014 at 5:13 pm

    This movie is awesome but sadly it marked the end of Carpenters “I can not make a bad movie” era. Seriously between 76 and 88 almost every film the dude directed was either good or a stone cold classic. Assault on Precinct 13, Halloween, The Fog, Escape from New York, The Thing, Christine, Starman, Big Trouble in Little China, Prince of Darkness and finally They live. Like holy crap besides a couple of those almost every damn one of them is bloody classic. John Carpenter WAS the 80’s for me.

  • tylerdurden389

    October 13, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    James, one day I would love to see a video where you go through the history of 80’s movies that all paid tribute to the 50’s and point out all the things in the films.

    – Back to The Future
    – Peggy Sue Got Married
    – They Live
    – The Thing
    – Alien (OK 1979, but I think it deserves mention)
    – Even Top Gun is full of 80’s music and the tone of the film has that American patriotic tone that was prevalent during the 50’s.

    Heck, make another video pointing out all the current stuff in the media that pays tribute tohe 80’s to. I would love for you and your fans to know about the current underground electronic music called “Newretrowave’ that sounds totally legit. Look up “MPMsoundtracks’, ‘Miami Nights 1984”, “Powerglove” (they did the music to “Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon”), “Betamaxx”, “MegaDrive”, “”Mitch Murder”, “Patrick Baker”, and “Tesla Boy”.

  • jasonjrf

    October 13, 2014 at 6:21 pm

    Awesome watching this as a kid cause there is a boob shot at the end that parents may miss 🙂

  • DrDing

    October 13, 2014 at 7:29 pm

    The long fight scene was, well at least according to me, because the actor was a wrestler. It’s pretty much a wrestling match in the middle of the movie, gotta show off those skills

  • October 13, 2014 at 8:02 pm

    the video keeps freezing

  • erik37

    October 13, 2014 at 8:07 pm

    Like everyone else is saying love this fucking movie, cant believe i saw it in the theaters 26 years ago dam im old lol

  • October 13, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    The reason why the fight scene was so long was because it is very difficult to make someone see the world through your eyes. I believe Carpenter commented on it and that was his reasoning for it. One of my favorites for sure.

  • Dur

    October 13, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    That quote at the end was awesome.

  • Mega-Gojira

    October 13, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    Friggin Aesome!!!!

  • Mega-Gojira

    October 13, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    Friggin Awesome!!!!!

  • Toothygrin

    October 13, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    kinda disappointing when I’ve seen it. I really like it when it isn’t something I have seen then I don’t have to hunt down a good movie.

  • PresidentJenkins

    October 13, 2014 at 11:20 pm

    I loved They Live. It was a fun and interesting movie but Roddy really is my biggest reason for loving this game. Sam Hell Comes To Frogtown is pretty fun as well if you want something that goes really over the top. Hot Rod is fighting giant frogs like nobodies business in this one.

  • bigrey

    October 14, 2014 at 1:35 am

    Hot Rod ”Rowdy” Roddy Piper with a shotgun shooting aliens and dropping ass kicking catch phrases ……Best movie EVER 10 out of 10!!!!

  • October 14, 2014 at 3:28 am

    Saints Row 4 paid tribute to the fight scene with Roddy Piper and Keith David. It was fucking awesome

  • October 14, 2014 at 7:07 am

    Wow, never heard of this one before. Interesting how Piper stars in it.

  • October 14, 2014 at 7:32 am

    One of my favorite wrestlers from the 1980’s.

  • Cilliandrew

    October 14, 2014 at 9:13 am

    Life’s a bitch…and she’s back in heat!

  • October 14, 2014 at 10:55 am

    this is a movie that should have been made into and awful awful TV series

  • October 14, 2014 at 10:56 am

    How can you not introduce the guy Piper beats up, all around guy been around every movie and voice of many cartoons over the years, including HBO Spawn, some of Miyazaki films, and of course a role in the classic movie Men at Work with Charlie Sheen and Emilio Estevez. It’s Keith David!

  • Satnav

    October 14, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    The whole fifties homage in this movie was kinda secondary; Carpenter was foremost ripping on Reaganomics and eighties consumer culture. Apparently he was inspired when he got fed up with constant commercialism on TV one night.

  • Roger Todd

    October 14, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    I hope he reviews the walking dead at some point. I LOVE the show!

  • Johnthegamer

    October 14, 2014 at 10:57 pm

    One of my favorites from my childhood. All the more because one of my favorite childhood wrestlers is the star.:D

  • Shane

    October 15, 2014 at 2:01 am

    Awwwwww man how did you not mention South Park recreating that fight scene in “Cripple Fight”

  • curt kaskavage

    October 16, 2014 at 10:54 am

    one of my favourites by John Carptenter, whom ive met

  • October 17, 2014 at 5:05 am

    And that quote made it more mainstream on duke nukem 3D

  • Brad Hammond

    October 17, 2014 at 8:05 am

    If anyone has played the new DMC the whole situation of being able to see the messages of Obey, and all the negative messages…ect in limbo, has to be inspired by this movie

  • TagaZok

    October 17, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    YEAH “they lived” I like that movie it’s one of the best . This film is still relevant to our day! Excellent choice !

  • Victoria Venetz

    October 18, 2014 at 3:16 am

    Thanks James for putting that line from the bank that’s my favorite line in the movie.

  • skwij

    October 20, 2014 at 1:21 pm

    I didn’t know that this is where that quote came from! Thanks!

  • November 1, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    One of my favorite movies. Favorite quote too.

  • nrk

    November 16, 2014 at 1:56 pm

    Last years monster madness was the best, it almost took on a “mini documentary” style, with the videos being 5-9 minutes each. This year, however, it’s mostly mini reviews at 3 minutes. I really hope you go back to last years format next year, that was far more enjoyable to watch.

  • November 26, 2014 at 10:48 pm

    I’ve recently watched this movie and i must say, it’s one of my all time favorites movies now, it’s just that great (I’m very careful choosing my favorites in any kind of media), granted that the ending (It’s not a spoiler) sucked, at least for me, when you watch it you will understand. I knew what the director wanted to say with that ending, with the main heroes i mean, but meh…. it sucked, but the rest of the movie, it was GREAT. For everyone that never watched this movie, i highly recomend it, A LOT. Thanks for this video James, it was the reason that i watched it. (And a liitle extra info: The quote “I’m here to kickass and bla bla”, was later used by Duke nukem!).

  • June 4, 2015 at 10:56 am

    So this is what Saints Row IV referenced with Roddy Piper and Keith David!

  • David

    August 2, 2015 at 4:18 pm

    RIP Roddy 🙁

    • August 4, 2015 at 5:21 am

      We lost the greatest baby face in Dusty Rhodes, now we lost the greatest heel in piper. If it is to be believed that everything happens in threes, we might loose another legend in a few months.

  • Geoff Graham

    August 4, 2015 at 10:57 pm

    Halloween soon! Cant wait for this years monster madness.

  • Alex Doucet

    August 11, 2015 at 4:29 pm

    I love the fight scene in the alley, classic.

  • greedo

    August 15, 2015 at 11:09 pm

    RIP, Roddy.

  • Carlo

    September 23, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    too spooped from other spooky movies so i watched this becuz its more spooky

  • May 22, 2016 at 9:10 am

    David Icke loves this movie

  • Matthaios2000

    July 12, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    This movie is a timeless classic.

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