Night of the Lepus

Watch Night of the Lepus

"How many eyes does horror have?"
  • PG
  • 1972
  • 1 hr 28 min
  • 4.1  (5,358)
  • 37

In the 1972 film Night of the Lepus, the idyllic town of Adobe Flats is facing a problem of epic proportions: a group of genetically mutated rabbits, bred for medical experimentation, have escaped from their cages and are terrorizing the countryside. These rabbits are not your ordinary cute and fluffy creatures -- they are the size of small deer and have a voracious appetite for flesh.

The movie follows Roy Bennett (Stuart Whitman), a local rancher, and his family as they attempt to survive the onslaught of the giant rabbits. Roy is initially skeptical of the idea that rabbits could become a threat to his livelihood, but he quickly changes his tune when he sees the destruction that the rabbits are capable of. Along with his wife Gerry (Janet Leigh) and daughter Amanda (Melanie Fullerton), Roy teams up with local rancher Cole Hillman (Rory Calhoun) to try to find a solution to the rabbit problem.

As the rabbits continue to wreak havoc, the townspeople become increasingly desperate. Some suggest using dynamite to blow up the rabbit warrens, while others propose using poison to kill the animals. However, neither of these methods proves to be effective, and the rabbits continue to reproduce and expand their territory.

Meanwhile, biologist Elgin Clark (DeForest Kelley) is brought in to try to understand the origin of the mutant rabbits. He determines that the rabbits were bred for an experiment in contraception, but something went wrong and they mutated into giant killers. With this knowledge, Clark devises a plan to sterilize the rabbits using an experimental virus.

As the town prepares for a final showdown with the killer rabbits, tensions run high. The ranchers and townspeople are armed and ready to defend their homes, while Clark prepares to release the virus. The climax of the film takes place in the hills surrounding Adobe Flats, as the humans face off against the giant rabbits in a battle for survival.

Night of the Lepus is often criticized for its ridiculous premise and cheesy special effects. The rabbits, which were played by live rabbits, puppets, and actors in rabbit costumes, are often seen hopping around miniature sets that are meant to represent the town or the countryside. The effect is sometimes unintentionally comical, but at other times genuinely creepy.

Despite its flaws, Night of the Lepus has developed a cult following over the years due to its unique premise and memorable scenes. It is often cited as an example of the "animals attack" horror subgenre that was popular in the 1970s, along with films like Jaws and Piranha. The film also features a notable cast of actors, including Janet Leigh from Psycho and Rory Calhoun from How to Marry a Millionaire.

Overall, Night of the Lepus is a bizarre and entertaining horror film that is sure to delight fans of campy cinema. While it may not be for everyone, those with a taste for the absurd and the macabre will find plenty to enjoy in this cult classic.

Night of the Lepus is a 1972 horror movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 28 minutes. It has received mostly poor reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 4.1 and a MetaScore of 37.

Night of the Lepus
Where to Watch Night of the Lepus
Night of the Lepus is available to watch free on Plex. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Night of the Lepus for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 28 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    4.1  (5,358)
  • Metascore