Jack DeVries (Chris Mulkey), a quiet citizen with no criminal past, robs a Los Angeles Wells Fargo bank, kills all of the security guards inside, and leads the Los Angeles Police Department on a high-speed chase. The chase ends when DeVries encounters a police blockade overseen by detective Thomas Beck (Michael Nouri). DeVries is shot several times, smashes through the blockade and crashes the Ferrari he is driving. DeVries is taken to a hospital, where a doctor informs Beck and his partner, Det. Cliff Willis (Ed O’Ross) that DeVries is not expected to survive the night.
Upon his return to LAPD headquarters, Beck and his supervisor, Lt. John Masterson (Clarence Felder), meet FBI Special Agent Lloyd Gallagher (Kyle MacLachlan), who informs them that Beck has been assigned to work with Gallagher to track down DeVries. When told of DeVries’s condition, Gallagher rushes off to the hospital.
Meanwhile, at the hospital, DeVries suddenly awakens. Disconnecting his life-support equipment, he approaches the comatose man in the next bed, Jonathan P. Miller (William Boyett). After DeVries forces Miller’s mouth open, a slug-like alien emerges from DeVries’ mouth and transfers itself into Miller’s body. Gallagher arrives to find DeVries dead on the floor and Miller’s bed abandoned. Gallagher tells Beck to put out an alert on Miller, who refuses, because of Miller’s lack of a criminal history.
Miller goes to a record store where he beats the store’s owner to death. He then goes to a car dealership, where he kills three men and steals a red Ferrari. He then visits a strip club, where the alien leaves Miller’s body and takes over the body of a stripper named Brenda (Claudia Christian). Gallagher asks police to track Brenda when he sees her picture next to Miller’s body.
Brenda is then propositioned by a cat-caller, she accepts and follows him to his car. They proceed to have vehicular sex in a parking lot which results in his death. She then takes his car. Gallagher and Beck pursue her to a rooftop, where they mortally wound her in a gun battle. As Brenda dies, Gallagher points a strangely-shaped, alien weapon at her; however, she leaps from the roof. As Masterson arrives from his house to take charge of the scene, the alien transfers itself from Brenda’s dying body to Masterson’s dog.
Frustrated by Gallagher’s continuing refusal to explain the strange phenomenon of ordinary citizens turning into crazed killers, Beck arrests him and puts him in a jail cell. Beck soon learns that “Gallagher” is an imposter, impersonating the real agent Gallagher, who is dead. When Beck confronts “Gallagher” with this information, “Gallagher” tells him that he (“Gallagher”) is an extraterrestrial lawman and that they are in fact pursuing an alien thrill killer who has the ability to take over human bodies. Beck dismisses the story as insane and leaves “Gallagher” incarcerated in a jail cell at the police station.
The Hidden is an American science fiction action-horror film produced and released in 1987 by New Line Cinema. The film was written by Bob Hunt (pen name of writer/producer/director Jim Kouf) and directed by Jack Sholder. The cast features Kyle MacLachlan and Michael Nouri and includes supporting roles by Clu Gulager, Chris Mulkey, Ed O’Ross, Clarence Felder, Claudia Christian and Larry Cedar. A sequel, The Hidden II, directed by Seth Pinsker was released in 1993.
The Hidden (1987)
Directed by: Jack Sholder
Starring: Kyle MacLachlan, Michael Nouri, Claudia Christian, Clarence Felder, Clu Gulager, Ed O’Ross, Richard Brooks, Katherine Cannon
Screenplay by: Jim Kouf
Production Design by: C.J. Strawn, Mick Strawn
Cinematography by: Jacques Haitkin
Film Editing by: Michael N. Knue, Maureen O’Connell
Costume Design by: Malissa Daniel
Set Decoration by: James R. Barrows
Music by: Michael Convertino
Distributed by: New Line Cinema
Release Date: October 20, 1987