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Salem's Lot (1979)

TV Movie  |  PG  |   |  Horror, Mystery, Thriller  |  17 November 1979 (USA)
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 13,128 users  
Reviews: 200 user | 53 critic

Vampires are invading a small New England town. It's up to a novelist and a young horror fan to save it.

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Title: Salem's Lot (TV Movie 1979)

Salem's Lot (TV Movie 1979) on IMDb 6.8/10

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Nominated for 3 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Bonnie Sawyer
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Gordon 'Weasel' Phillips (as Elisha Cook)
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Cully Sawyer
Ed Flanders ...
Dr. Bill Norton
Clarissa Kaye-Mason ...
Majorie Glick (as Clarissa Kaye)
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Barney McFadden ...
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Storyline

The successful writer Benjamin "Ben" Mears returns to his hometown Salem's Lot, Maine, expecting to write a new novel about the Marsten House. Ben believes that the manor is an evil house that attracts evil men since the place has many tragic stories and Ben saw a ghostly creature inside the house when he was ten. Ben finds that the Marsten House has just been rented to the antique dealers Richard K. Straker and his partner Kurt Barlow that is permanently traveling. Ben meets the divorced teacher Susan Norton that is living with her parents and they have a love affair. Ben also gets close to her father Dr. Bill Norton and his former school teacher Jason Burke. When people start to die anemic, Ben believes that Straker's partner is a vampire. But how to convince his friends that he is not crazy and that is the truth? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The ultimate in terror!


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 November 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Salem's Lot: The Movie  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (theatrical) | (uncut) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although this adaptation differs dramatically in a lot of different areas from the novel - notably in the depiction of chief vampire Mr Barlow - Stephen King approved of it. See more »

Goofs

When Barlow is in Mark's kitchen, the make-up line on Barlow's neck is visible. See more »

Quotes

Jason Berk: [holding crucifix in front of vampire Mike] I revoke my invitation. Get out.
Mike Ryerson: [raises hands in defence] You'll sleep with the dead, teacher.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The text of the opening credits appear and dissolve piece by piece into each other in a jigsaw puzzle fashion. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in South Park: The Ungroundable (2008) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

This is one of a handful of truly scary films
1 September 2003 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

I was fourteen years old when this film was released, and it was really a shocker for its time. Although I can see the points raised by detractors of this film, nevertheless, it is, in my opinion, one of the most truly terrifying movies I have ever seen. The scenes in which first Ralphie and then Danny Glick appear in windows at night, scratching to be let in, were utterly horrifying, as were the scenes with Mike Ryerson in Jason Burke's guest bedroom ("Looooook at me ... I will see you sleep like the dead, teacher") and Marjorie Glick in the mortuary. Along with the original "Halloween," this is a film that really, really scared me, and I feel that a key element was the lack of gore (which is probably a disappointment to younger viewers used to explicit splatter). The nonverbal dialogue of expressions and actions, the music, and the significantly occurring silences resulted in the suspense which makes a film truly frightening in my opinion.

Having said this, I do feel that the book was much, much better than the movie, and I would recommend it as one of the best vampire stories ever written (sorry, Anne Rice, but it's true). But let's be fair and realistic. It's a rare film that excels the book on which it was based. Not one of Stephen King's wonderfully (and horribly) imaginative works has EVER been committed to film in a way that has equaled the written work. Never, ever, EVER. That is something that will just never happen. If it were possible, then nobody would bother to read his books, he would become a screenwriter, and that would be a real loss for the horror genre.


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Message Boards

Recent Posts
Danny Glick. bassgoilius
New Book on the Making of 'Salem's Lot' rjames1973
from left field but about the movie- Eratrosceles
This movie is the reason... just_jesss
Is there a commentary on the miniseries dvd? jakholman
King readers, perhaps you can help bassgoilius
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