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ROADGAMES (1981) – Episode 262 – Decades of Horror 1980s

Quid: “Aren’t you kind of young to be hitchhiking out here all by yourself?” Hitch: “Aren’t you kind of old to be picking me up?” She’s got a point. Join your faithful Grue Crew – Chad Hunt, Bill Mulligan, and Jeff Mohr – as they take another trip down under for some Ozploitation with Richard Franklin’s Roadgames (1981).

Decades of Horror 1980s
Episode 262 – Roadgames (1981)

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A laid-back American truck driver in south Australia suspects that the driver of a green van is killing young women along his route, and plays a game of cat-and-mouse to catch him.

It’s Ozploitation time again for the Grue Crew! This go-around, the Crew discusses Richard Franklin’s Roadgames (1981) starring Stacy Keach and Jamie Lee Curtis as the pair trek across Southern Australia’s Nullarbor Plain hauling pig carcasses from Melbourne to Perth. Conceived as Hitchcock’s Rear Window (1954) as seen from a tractor-trailer, Roadgames features encounters along the road with a cast of recurring travelers and a serial killer. Keach’s and Curtis’ chemistry is apparent in their engaging performances. Though not straight horror, Roadgames is horror-adjacent while generating its share of suspense amid horrific events.

At the time of this writing, Roadgames is available to stream from Amazon Prime, Peacock, Tubi, PlutoTV, and multiple PPV sources. The movie is available on physical media as a standard Blu-ray disc from Shout! Factory.

Every two weeks, Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror 1980s podcast will cover another horror film from the 1980s. The next episode’s film, chosen by Bill, will be Evilspeak (1981), one of the video nasties, featuring Clint Howard as an outcast military cadet, R.G. Armstrong as Sarge, and Richard Moll in a supporting role. This should be interesting! 

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Jeff Mohr
Jeff lives smack dab in the middle of the cornfields of Iowa and is a long-time horror fan. His first remembered encounters with the genre were The Wizard of Oz, Tarzan gorilla chases, and watching the first broadcast of The Twilight Zone episode, "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge." While he now qualifies as an old fart, he strives to be an Old Boy. Paraphrasing Robert Bloch, he has the heart of a small boy. He keeps it in a jar on his desk. Jeff has written for Horrornews.net and SQ Horror Magazine. He currently writes for Gruesome Magazine and is a co-host of the Decades of Horror podcasts - The Classic Era, 1970s, and 1980s - and the Gruesome Magazine Podcast.