"A family road trip goes terrifyingly awry when the travelers become stranded in a government atomic zone. Miles from nowhere, the Carters soon realize the seemingly uninhabited wasteland is actually the breeding ground of a blood-thirsty mutant family...and they are the prey. " http://movies.yahoo.com
The film starts off with some text about the government conducting nuclear tests in the desert, and how the government to this day denies the effects of it. We then see men in biohazard suits in the New Mexico desert, and their nearby truck. They catch fish and walk around, seeing how bad the radiation is. Suddenly a bloodied man lunges at one of the scientists, begging for help. Someone else plunges an axe into the scientists head, then rips it out and jams it into the body of another scientist. The axe is stuck in the scientists body, and so the killer flings his body hard onto rocks until he dies. The last scientist tries to escape up a hill, but is dragged down. The scene ends with the killer driving off in the truck, dragging the corpses of the scientists somewhere.
The opening credits come up as we see stock footage of nuclear bombs going off, destroying buildings and leaving planes. We also see quick flashes of the effects of the bombing, including several people becoming deformed.
A gas attendant (Tom Bower) rests inside his store out in the middle of nowhere. He hears a noise, and so investigates with a shotgun. He thinks its Ruby, trying to trade stuff again. He walks around the desert, first looking for Ruby then for Jupiter. He stops his investigation when he gets to a dark mine shaft, then he returns to his store where he finds a bag at the front door. The gas attendant yells out that he cant keep doing this, but takes the bag inside anyways. The bag is full of jewelry, wallets, some money, and a human ear. The gas attendant hears someone honking their horn outside, and we see Big Bob Carter (Ted Levine) waiting for some service. The gas attendant goes and refills the gas for his truck. Big Bob is traveling with his wife Ethel (Kathleen Quinlan), son Bobby (Dan Byrd), daughter Brenda (Emilie de Ravin), eldest daughter Lynne (Vinessa Shaw), and son-in-law Doug Bukowski (Aaron Stanford). Doug and Lynne are married, and have a baby daughter named Catherine (Maisie Camilleri Preziosi). The gas attendant mentions that he doesnt see many travelers come through here anymore, and Ethel tells him that they are on their way to San Diego. Its a bit clear that Bob is sort of lost.
Doug tries to fix the air conditioning in the trailer that the Carters brought, but its wont work. Its easily over 100 degrees, and hes a bit aggravated that they couldn't just fly like normal people. Lynne explains that they are doing this trip because its her parents 25th anniversary, and she wants Doug to be nice (who counters that her parents hate him). Bobby and Brenda look around and play with a pig. Brenda scares Bobby while hes taking a piss in the outhouse, and its getting time to go. Doug offers to pay for the gas, but Bob refuses and pays for it. During this time Doug tries to work his cell phone (he sells them for a living), but it doesn't work. Also during this time we see Ruby (Laura Ortiz) reach into the truck and steal Bobbys red sweatshirt. Doug and Bobby get in the trailer while everyone else rides in the truck. The gas attendant recommends a shortcut that goes off the main road, and sends them off. While they drive away, he looks kind of remorseful.
Bob takes the shortcut, and the family drives down a lonely stretch of dirt road. Bobby tries to fix the air conditioning, but Doug tells him that he already tried. Bobby gets it to work though, and Doug smokes a cigarette. Lynne made him quit, but he still smokes and Bobby tells him that his parents will kill him when their brand new trailer smells like smoke. Doug offers Bobby one, but is just teasing (his sister would kill him). Brenda makes it clear that she hates this road trip, but her parents try to make her happy with small talk and some singing. In the middle of the road spikes spring up from the ground, and the truck runs over them. Bob tries to keep control but winds up crashing into a rock. The spikes are pulled away by someone or something.
Everyone is fine, but the truck is totaled and is not going anywhere anytime soon. They debate about what to do they can wait for someone else to drive by, try to fix the truck themselves with whatever tools they have, or start walking. They opt for option three. Bob is a retired detective, and so he brought guns on the trip. He gives one to Bobby, and tells him to watch out for the women. Bob chastises Doug for being a democrat, and Doug insists that he doesnt need a weapon. While in the trailer, Lynne sees something reflecting somewhere in the hills. As she tries to make out what it is, Bobby jumps up to the window and asks her for a Twinkie. The Carters have two dogs, Beauty and Beast. Beauty runs off into the hills, but Bobby chases her down and brings her back. Brenda sunbathes and says that next year shes going to Cancun with her friends. The family shortly all get together and pray. Doug then starts to walk further down the road, while Bob walks back towards the gas station. All the while someone is watching them via binoculars.
Ethel makes a meal for her family, and talks about her dislike of rattle snakes. They are all sitting outside, and Bobby puts down the pistol on the table. Ethel says that shes happy they could all take the trip together, and Brenda tells her that shes the only one. She opens the trailer door and the dogs run away again. Bobby runs off after Beauty, without the gun. While hes in the hills, he calls out for Beauty. He doesn't realize that Ruby is watching him the whole time. Eventually Bobby hears Beauty whimper, and he rushes off in the direction of the noise. He finds blood trailing straight to Beautys body. Shes been killed by something, and her stomach is completely cut open. Bobby freaks out and starts to run back to the trailer (he feels like hes being watched). He falls off a high rock and lands hard on the ground. Hes knocked out, and Ruby comes by and watches over him. She sees blood dripping onto Bobbys face, and looks up to find Goggle (Ezra Buzzington) eating one of Beautys ripped off legs. Goggle has no facial hair whatsoever, and wears an old hat. Rubys face is deformed, and her fingers are webbed together. Goggle lets out a happy howl and continues to feast on Beauty.
Eventually, Doug finds a crater full of old cars and junk. All the cars are torn up, and he takes a teddy bear for Catherine. He also takes some fishing equipment for some reason. As he leaves, he doesnt see that the crater is just one of many. Ruby stays with Bobby until he starts to regain consciousness. She runs off when she hears Brenda looking for him. They go back to the trailer, where Ethel stitches up Bobbys cuts. Lynne mentions that they tried to contact someone on the radio they have, but all they heard was breathing. She figures it was a perverted call and leaves it as that. Bobby doesnt tell anyone what happened to Beauty. He hears a noise outside and rushes out with the gun in hand. He searches around the trailer and finds Doug, who freaks out when the gun is pointed at him. The family asks him why he brought back a bunch of junk, but Doug tells him that the road just dead-ends.
Big Bob finally gets to the gas station (its night) and calls out for the attendant. Hes nowhere to be found, but he goes inside the store and drinks some water. He looks around for the attendant when he finds his office, which has several newspaper clippings about nuclear testing and miners refusing to abandon their homes. There are also some clippings about people disappearing in the desert. Bob finds the severed ear and takes out his gun. He hears the attendant is in the outhouse, and carefully approaches it. The man is yelling and threatens to kill Jupiter. Bob opens the door and finds the man is drinking and holding a shotgun. Bob orders him to drop his weapon, and the gas attendant tells him that he just cant do this anymore. He puts the shotgun underneath his chin and blows his head off. Bob hears someone nearby say daddy over and over again. The sound surrounds him, and so Bob fires his gun in all directions. Scared, he gets into a car and tries to start it up when he hears daddy coming from the back seat. He looks into the rear-view mirror and sees Jupiter (Billy Drago) in the backseat. Jupiter bashes Bobs head against the windows, which knocks him out. He then drags Bobs body into the mine shaft, where Bob hears the mutants talking about getting his family.
Bobby is locking up the trailer when Lynne tells him that she and Doug are going to sleep in the truck. He tries to convince them to sleep in the trailer with everyone else, but they ignore him. Doug tells him that hes just worried that Bob isn't back yet. He promises that if hes not back by midnight, theyll both go looking for him. Doug and Lynne go to the truck to rest. While everyone sleeps, Bobby stays wide-awake, waiting for midnight to come. He hears dog noises, and so he goes outside and investigates. When he gets closer to the hills, the dog noises stop and he hears someone laughing. A hand strokes Brendas head as she sleeps and giggles. When Brenda opens her eyes, she sees Pluto (Michael Bailey Smith) standing over her. His face is severely deformed and is kind of swollen (he also wears a suit jacket). He puts his hand over her mouth to keep her from screaming. Bobby runs back to the truck and talks with Doug and Lynne. He says that there are people or something in the hills, and tells them that Beauty was gutted. Hes freaking out that Bobs not back yet, and so Doug goes outside to help ! him look for his father. Pluto yells into his walkie-talkie Do it now!
Doug and Bobbys attention is diverted to the desert, where they see something burst into flames. Its Bob, whos been crucified and is now on fire. Doug grabs a fire extinguisher and tells Brenda to watch over the baby. Everyone else runs out away from the trailer and watch Bob being burned alive. Lizard (Robert Joy) jumps down from the roof of the trailer and enters, closing the door. Pluto thus begins to rape Brenda while she helplessly screams. Lizards upper lip is stuck up, so you can see his nasty teeth all the time. He drinks some milk and looks around the kitchen. He grabs the Carters pet bird and bites off its head. He then squeezes the body, pouring its blood into his mouth to drink. He stops Pluto raping Brenda, telling him hes not a man yet. Pluto goes to the kitchen and throws a tantrum, destroying nearly everything. Lizard climbs on top of Brenda and hits her in the head. And just like Pluto, Lizard rapes Brenda.
Outside, Doug tries to extinguish the fire but Ethel is hysterical and is interfering, saying that its not Bob. Bobby watches in horror as his father screams in pain. Lynne starts to take Ethel back to the trailer. After Lizard is done raping Brenda, he notices baby Catherine. Lynne enters the trailer, and Pluto holds Brenda hostage. Lizard holds the baby at gunpoint, and then touches Lynnes face with his hand. He rips open her shirt and sucks on her breasts, still holding Catherine and gunpoint. Lynne is defenseless and sees a screwdriver nearby. Ethel hears the commotion coming from the trailer. She picks up a rock and enters, finding her daughters being violated. Ethel brings the rock over her head and is about to hit Lizard with it but he blasts a hole in her chest with Bobs pistol. Lynne stabs Lizard in the leg with the screwdriver, and they wrestle around for the gun.
Doug finally put the fire out, but Bob is dead. Bobby, in a fit of rage, starts to walk into the hills to get revenge. Doug tries to stop him. Lizard overpowers Lynne and shoots her point-blank in the forehead. Bobby and Doug hear the gunshot, and start to run back to the trailer. Pluto takes the baby, and Lizard drags Brenda outside. He aims at her mouth and pulls the trigger, but hes out of bullets. He promises to come back for her and leaves. Bobby tries to shoot them, but misses. Doug enters the blood-splattered trailer and finds the bodies. It turns out Lynnes not dead yet, and she lives her final moments in intense pain. She finally dies, and Doug cries over her body. He then looks into the cradle and finds the baby missing. Bobby and Brenda enter the trailer, and find that Ethel is actually still alive. Bobs body, still in the desert, is suddenly taken away.
Doug gets a blanket for Ethel, whos cold. She tells him that hes very sweet, and asks where everyone is. He tells her everyones fine, and Lynne is sleeping. Ethel smiles and dies. Elsewhere, Goggle is spying on them via binoculars. He hears a noise and is attacked by Beast. The dog bites his neck and mauls him to death. Bobby tries to leave the trailer, but Doug stops him. Bobby wants to avenge his parents, but Doug tells him that he wouldnt last long out there. Doug wants to get a plan, and Bobby tells him that Bob was right Doug is a pussy, and he asks him how he can be so calm while his baby is kidnapped. Doug gets angry, and Brenda is screaming in her bed, holding a pillow. They hear a voice outside, and they turn off the lights. Brenda is hysterical, saying that Lizard has come back for her. They hear the voice in front of the door, asking about Goggle. Bobby fires three times through the door. Doug looks through a bullet hole and doesnt find anyone.
He goes outside and finds someones arm with a radio in it. The voice was coming from this, and the arm belongs to Goggle. Doug sees something underneath the trailer and Bobby fires through the floor. Its Beast, whos unharmed. Doug talks through the radio, asking why they are doing this. He demands his baby back, but no one responds. Bobby asks him what they are going to do. The next morning, Doug runs off with Beast and the walkie-talkie (along with a baseball bat). Beast has smelled the mutants, so he can lead Doug to them. Meanwhile, Bobby and Brenda take the fishing equipment and tie the fishing line around the campsite as a perimeter. They rig it so if anyone touches the line, they will be notified. Brenda burns a tire, but Bobby tells her that its useless. They are on their own.
Doug gets to the mining shaft and enters. We see a shadow run by, but Doug cant see it. He re-emerges on the other side of the shaft, where he sees an old town off in the distance. He gets to the town and finds it deserted. There are mannequins all over the town in various positions. He finds a house with a generator on, and looks in through a window. He sees Catherine on a bed. He moves to get inside when a mutant suddenly walks past Doug. This mutant is Cyst, who wears a head-brace and a flannel shirt. Cyst is dragging a female corpse. Beast makes a noise and Doug covers his mouth. Cyst turns around and finds nothing. He looks around a car, then just shrugs and continues to drag the body. Doug was hiding in the car. He leaves Beast there and enters the house alone with the baseball bat.
He tries his best to be silent, but the floorboards are a bit squeaky. He sees a bald obese woman watching Divorce Court on TV. He makes his way to Catherine, picks her up, and starts to walk towards the door. While hes busy trying to be quiet, he doesnt notice the obese woman lunge at him. She knocks him out and he drops the baby. He wakes up in a big ice box, where he is surrounded by mutilated and severed body parts. He freaks out and pounds on all sides of the box, making the baseball bat on top bounce around. He eventually breaks free and grabs the bat, making his way through the house again. He hears a raspy voice sing the National Anthem, and follows the direction of the voice. Doug sees Bobs burnt body is seated at a table with an American flag jammed into his head. Doug enters the living room to find Big Brain (Desmond Askew), a wheel-chair bound mutant whose head remains in a back position due to his huge brain.
Doug asks him where his baby is, but Big Brain says he doesnt know (he never leaves the house). He tells Doug about the government and their nuclear testing causing all of them to become the way they are. Big Brain then starts to laugh. Doug asks him why hes laughing. Big Brain says its breakfast time!, and Pluto burst through the glass door with an axe. He chases Doug throughout the house and beats the crap out of him. He narrowly misses Dougs head with the axe when Beast comes in and bites Pluto (Beast escaped the car through a hole in the car). Doug runs into the next room and locks the door by shoving a bathtub against it. Things grow silent outside, and he cautiously goes near the door. Pluto bursts through the wall and grabs him. The bat breaks during this, and Doug shoves the broken bat into Plutos chest. Pluto laughs, takes the bat out, and beats Doug with it. He throws him through a wall into the dining room. Pluto swings down with his axe and cuts off two fingers on Dougs left hand.
Doug, bloodied and beaten, lifts up a screwdriver very weakly and holds it to Plutos chest. Pluto laughs and holds his axe to Dougs neck. Doug pleads for him not to kill him, and Pluto mocks him with Big Brain. Doug stabs Pluto in the foot with the screwdriver, and while Pluto wails in pain Doug rips out the flag out of Bobs head and shoves it through Plutos throat. Pluto falls onto the floor, and Doug swings the axe into Plutos head. Pluto dies, and Doug puts his broken glasses back on. He leaves the house, and Big Brain tells Lizard via walkie-talkie to kill the baby. Big Brain laughs but stops when he sees Beast staring at him, very hungry. Beast kills Big Brain.
Cyst hears the commotion and runs to the house with shotgun in hand. Doug is hiding behind a car and slashes Cysts leg. Cyst falls onto the car when Doug stabs him in the back with the axe. He twists it around for good measure and rips it out, causing Cyst to fall on his back. Cyst sees Doug switch the pick axe to the pointed end, and Doug stabs Cyst in the eye with it. Cyst dies.
Meanwhile, Bobby and Brenda have moved Ethel and Lynnes bodies to the truck. They hear their alarm, and go to investigate. They find that it was just tumbleweed, but when they go back to the truck they find Ethels body is missing. Brenda asks wheres mom? and Bobby goes off alone into the hills with the gun, full of rage. He follows a blood trail and finds Jupiter eating his mothers corpse. Jupiter rips out her heart and starts to devour it when he notices Bobby, whos scared and disgusted out of his mind. Bobby runs away and Jupiter chases after him. Bobby tries to shoot him but keeps on missing. Bobby gets Brenda into the trailer, where she opens some gas tanks. Jupiter throws an axe at Bobby and nearly misses. Bobby rigs the door with matches so that if it opens, the matches will strike and the trailer will explode. Jupiter grabs Brenda through the window, and Bobby soon takes her place. The windows wont open, so they are stuck in the trailer. Bobby ties Jupiters hands to the trailer and opens a back window. Bobby and Brenda escape while Jupiter breaks free. He opens the door and the trailer explodes.
Ruby watches over Catherine when Lizard orders her to leave. She does, and Lizard grabs a butcher knife while Doug searches the houses with Cysts shotgun. Lizard pulls back Catherines blankets to find a pig in her place. He gets pissed and yells out for Ruby. Doug sees Ruby running away with his baby, and he gives chase. He eventually gets in front of her, and she offers him Catherine back. While Doug lets down his guard, Lizard jumps down on top of him and proceeds to beat him up. Dougs gun is knocked away, along with Lizards gun. Lizard uses his bullets wrapped around his body as a whip, and hits Doug in the face with the bullets. He then bashes Dougs head on the ground, and chases after Ruby.
Doug, barely alive, looks at his bloody left hand and sees his wedding ring. He musters up enough strength to get up and go on. Lizard grabs Ruby and causes her to take a nasty spill on some rocks along with Catherine. Doug bashes Lizard in the face with the shotgun and shoots him in the chest, then the shoulder. Lizard appears to be dead, and Doug drops his shotgun. He finally gets Catherine back and holds her in his arms. Lizard gets back up and picks up the shotgun. He aims at Doug, but Ruby lunges at him and they both fall off a cliff. Ruby and Lizard die from the fall.
Bobby and Brenda survey the wreckage from the explosion. They find Jupiter, burnt and impaled on something. He laughs a little bit but stops when Brenda plunges an axe into his forehead. Jupiters dead. Doug makes his way back to Bobby and Brenda, who hug him and are happy he made it back. As they embrace, we see that they are still being watched by mutants through binoculars.
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