Terror at London Bridge

Director: E. W. Swackhamer

USA - 1985

  N/A N/A N/A N/A   


For the benefit of those with a short attention span...

A magic rock transports Jack the Ripper through time to the sleepy town of Lake Havasu. Luckily, David Hasselhoff is there to kick his English arse.

The Guilty Party

Nice shirt - if you were a Now and Later

David Hasselhoff plays Don Gregory: A big city cop who loses his cool after killing a young boy whom he mistakes for being armed. Don is reassigned to the small town of Lake Havasu, where things are kept pretty low-key; that is, until Jack the Ripper comes to town (did I mention the magic rock?).

Stepfanie Kramer plays Angie: A local woman, Hoff’s love interest, and proprietor of a boat rental company.

Adrienne Barbeau plays Lynn Chandler: Angie’s friend; a librarian who’s a sucker for a (really fake) British accent. Swamp Thing, unfortunately, never shows up to save her from this film.

Randolph Mantooth plays Joe Nez: Hoff’s partner; no one extraordinary, but “Mantooth” is a pretty cool name.

Clu Gulager plays Chief Peter Dawson: Hoff’s boss; the requisite ticked-off police captain. His name is pretty cool too, but it’s no “Mantooth.”


My "thoughts" on the film. Thinking! Ha!

I’m curious as to how Bridge Across Time came to be.

I can only imagine the sales pitch:

The Producer:  “Ok, so you have this famous bridge from London, see, and they move this bridge – the entire bridge, mind you – to America, to act as a centerpiece to a quaint English village recreation. BUT, "Hmmm...he looks much duller in person."this also happens to be the same bridge that Jack the Ripper was shot off of way back in the 1800’s – and they never found his body, see! So, they bring over the whole bridge, except they’re missing one piece – a block of cement knocked off by Jack during his dramatic demise all those years ago! But then they find the missing piece at the bottom of the river and send it to America, see! So they have this huge celebration in honor of the bridge’s completion, and that evening, after the festivities have ended and almost everybody has gone home, one of the straggling tourists accidentally cuts herself while strolling the bridge, and a tiny drop of blood lands onto that imported rock, see! There’s some smoke, a flash, and BOOM! Jack the Ripper appears and resumes his diabolical killing spree!”

The Money:  “Ok, so let me get this straight, Jack the Ripper materializes in modern day 1985 froRobert Culp tries to keep a low profilem….a rock?

The Producer:  “Yeah! Yeah! It can’t miss, see! And the only person to combat this historical madman is David Hasselhoff - a tough city cop recently reassigned to Lake Havasu after a fatal mishap where he inadvertently killed a young boy whom he mistook as being armed! So, not only does Hoff have to confront Jack the Ripper, but he must also confront his inner-demons, see!”

The Money:  “Hmmm, Jack the Ripper in modern day 1985. David Hasselhoff, star of both cinema and television, battling both the Ripper and his emotions. Do you realize what you have here, mister?”

Joe:  “A turd?”

The Money:  “No! What you"This is a science lab, sir; For the last time, we don't have any old copies of Knight Rider for you to play on the big screen." have here, simply put, is GENIUS! (to his secretary) Quick! Get Hasselhoff’s agent on the phone!”

The Producer:  “Don’t bother, he’s right outside the front door. I put a nickel in his tin cup on my way in.”

And thus, Bridge Across Time was born. Or shat, depending on how you want to look at it.

But in all fairness, I should point out that this film was not only made for TV, but was also made in 1985. As we all know, made-for-TV cinema - for the most part – sucks. And 1985 wasn’t exactly a stellar year in terms of hipness. So, automatically, that’s two strikes going against it.

But let’s give blame where blame is due – Bridge Across Time truly sucks eggs. Foremost,"See kids? *She* didn't tip the Tour Guide." consider the story – Jack the Ripper is reincarnated through a rock! A rock, for Pete’s sake! And then, this infamous madman who has eluded the authorities for years is finally bested by David Hasselhoff?! I’d expect McGruff the Crime Dog to take the Ripper down before David Hasselhoff!

For the most part, the acting is standard televison fare. No one really blew me away, but then again, no one really blew.

But regressing a bit, I must accentuate that my biggest gripe is the story – I mean, a rock, for cryin’ out loud! Sure, there were some hokey characters, bad fashion (shame on you, Dave!), and sad, faux rock music, but that story was really the pits - along with the dancing (again, shame on you!).



These are the times of which to cherish...

"Every time you go a-way, you take a piece of me with you..."

The two British suspects: One dresses in black, looks ominous, acts weird, and carries newspaper clippings detailing the Ripper’s murders. The other dresses like a dandy, is polite, kind, and a real charmer with the ladies. Golly, which one can be the killer? I’m willing to bet there’s a big plot twist at the end that we’ll never see coming.

"That's right. I'm pissed."

The perpetually angry police chief. This guy is in everything.

"Wow! Are those tears? Crying on cue! Running the beach in slo-mo! This guy does everything!"

The show-stopper where David Hasselhoff confesses to Angie about being a former big city cop who inadvertently shot a juvenile suspect running from a convenience store when he mistook said suspect for pulling a gun – which actually turned out to be a can opener! A can opener! Hoff even manages to whip up a couple tears! Now that’s ACTING!

-  Hoff’s partner, Joe, who somehow manages to look like Dustin Hoffman and Steve Perry at the same time! ACTING! On second thought, probably just coincidence.



Check out a clip from this film, along with many others, here!


Good luck finding it!




-- Copyright © 2001 by J. Bannerman



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