6.4/10
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78 user 53 critic

Just Before Dawn (1981)

Five campers arrive in the mountains to examine some property they have bought, but are warned by the forest ranger Roy McLean that a huge machete-wielding maniac has been terrorising the ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Gregg Irving) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Roy McLean
...
Ty
...
Jonathan
...
Warren
Deborah Benson ...
...
Daniel
Katie Powell ...
Merry Cat Logan (as Kati Powell)
...
Charles Bartlett ...
Vachel
...
Megan
Hap Oslund ...
Pa Logan
Barbara Spencer ...
Ma Logan
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Storyline

Five campers arrive in the mountains to examine some property they have bought, but are warned by the forest ranger Roy McLean that a huge machete-wielding maniac has been terrorising the area. Ignoring the warnings, they set up camp, and start disappearing one by one. If that sounds too run-of-the-mill, there's a genuinely shocking plot twist half-way through... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The nightmare has begun -- See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 October 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Justo Antes De Amanecer  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended cut)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Despite its authentic, weathered appearance the 'old' church house used in the film was actually built for the production. See more »

Goofs

At 50:19, When Daniel approaches the cemetery to take pictures a boom mic is visible for a few seconds in the top left of the screen before it is realized and then pulled out of the frame. See more »

Quotes

Warren: There's nothing out there but God's little creatures, more scared of you than you are of them.
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Connections

Referenced in The Woods Have Eyes (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Heart Of Glass
Written by Debbie Harry and Chris Stein
Performed by Blondie
©(1979) Courtesy of Chrysalis Records, A Division of EMI
Under License from EMI-Capitol Music Special Markets
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User Reviews

Frightening and bizarrely compelling
27 August 2000 | by (Trenton, Michigan) – See all my reviews

Very scary backwoods slasher is much better than others, such as "The Prey" and some of the later "Friday the 13th" sequels. The story has to do with five teenager campers running afoul of a pair of psychotic, machete-wielding hillbilly twins. One by one they are dispatched by the murderous giants (who giggle as they slaughter their prey). This has some great photography of the Oregon wilderness, a creepy musical score, and some of the best shocks ever put into a horror/slasher film. I really enjoy the scene where Daniel and Megan are menaced by one of the killers. A classic that deserves a video re-release. I actually stumbled across this one for four bucks at a resale shop in Northern Michigan.


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