5.2/10
1,084
31 user 43 critic

The Unseen (1980)

A trio of female reporters find themselves staying overnight in a house occupied by a hostile being lurking in the basement.

Director:

(as Peter Foleg)

Writers:

(screenplay) (as Peter Foleg), (story) (as Peter Foleg) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Nightmare (1981)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A mental patient embarks on a murder spree upon escaping from an institution.

Director: Romano Scavolini
Stars: Baird Stafford, Sharon Smith, C.J. Cooke
X-Ray (1981)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

While receiving a routine check-up, a beautiful woman is stalked by a maniac out to avenge a childhood Valentine's Day humiliation.

Director: Boaz Davidson
Stars: Barbi Benton, Charles Lucia, Jon Van Ness
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A teenage vigilante seeks revenge on a group of violent thugs who raped her handicapped sister and killed her best friend.

Directors: Danny Steinmann, Tom DeSimone
Stars: Linda Blair, John Vernon, Robert Dryer
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

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 »

Director: Jeff Lieberman
Stars: George Kennedy, Mike Kellin, Chris Lemmon
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  

College student Beth and her sorority sisters are stalked by an escaped psychopathic killer who shares a strange telepathic link with her.

Director: Carol Frank
Stars: Angela O'Neill, Wendy Martel, Pamela Ross
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

On a lonely island in the Pacific Northwest, a group of travelers find themselves targeted by a crazed, homicidal family.

Director: John Hough
Stars: Sarah Torgov, Terence Kelly, Mark Erickson
Rawhead Rex (1986)
Fantasy | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

Ireland will never be the same after Rawhead Rex, a particularly nasty demon, is released from his underground prison by an unwitting farmer. The film follows Rex's cross country rampage, while a man struggles to stop it.

Director: George Pavlou
Stars: David Dukes, Kelly Piper, Hugh O'Conor
Curtains (1983)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Six young actresses auditioning for a movie role at a remote mansion are targeted by a mysterious masked murderer.

Director: Richard Ciupka
Stars: John Vernon, Samantha Eggar, Linda Thorson
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Stefano, a young journalist, buys a used typewriter and accidentally sees that some text is still readable on the ribbon. He manages to reconstruct the story of a scientist, Paolo Zeder, ... See full summary »

Director: Pupi Avati
Stars: Gabriele Lavia, Anne Canovas, Paola Tanziani
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Alien creatures invade a small town and four teenagers, along with a young boy, attempt to escape from them.

Director: Douglas McKeown
Stars: Charles George Hildebrandt, Tom DeFranco, Richard Lee Porter
The Slayer (1982)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

Siblings, Eric & his surreal artist sister Kay, her doctor husband David, her sister-in-law Brooke along with pilot Marsh become stranded on a rugged isle face off against a supernatural beast drawn to Kay who dreams of its killings.

Director: J.S. Cardone
Stars: Sarah Kendall, Frederick Flynn, Carol Kottenbrook
Final Exam (1981)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

A psycho killer shows up on college campus to slash up pretty co-eds and dumb jocks.

Director: Jimmy Huston
Stars: Cecile Bagdadi, Joel S. Rice, Ralph Brown
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
'Junior' Keller (The Unseen)
...
...
...
Virginia Keller
Karen Lamm ...
Karen Fast
...
Tony Ross (as Doug Barr)
Lois Young ...
Vicki Thompson
...
Solvang Lady
Edit

Storyline

Freelance reporter Jennifer and her two friends, Karen and Vicki, accept an invitation for cheap room and board in a large farmhouse offered by a friendly, but shady, museum owner named Ernest Keller since all the motels in and around town are booked for a holiday parade fair Jennifer is covering. But unknown to the women, some unseen "thing" has been living in the basement of the house for over 20 years and is looked after by Keller and his shy sister Virginia, in which the "thing" soon gets out and begins harassing and killing the women one by one in various violent, but seemingly accidental, means. Written by matt-282

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Three Beautiful Women. An Old Museum. And An Unspeakable Terror Hidden In Darkness ... Until Now! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

September 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

O Mistério do Invisível  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The project originally began as a screenplay by Kim Henkel and Michael Viner. The final screenplay was so radically altered that both men were not credited. Henkel and Viner's screenplay was eventually adapted into the book "Deadly Encounter" by Richard Woodley in 1980. See more »

Quotes

Ernest Keller: I wonder what junior's fate would be... I wonder... Seems obvious to me my dear they would not treat him so kindly. He would suffer greatly
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Rather dull proceedings sprinkled with memorable moments
1 July 2015 | by (Oregon) – See all my reviews

"The Unseen" has Barbara Bach as one of three female Los Angeles news reporters who are in Northern California to cover a local festival. They end up boarding at an old farmhouse after finding all the hotels in town to be booked, and each individually come face-to-face with a sinister presence lurking in the basement of the home.

Given the credentials of its makers, one would think that "The Unseen" would excel as a genre picture— an early directing credit of cult filmmaker Danny Steinmann, director of "Savage Streets" and "Friday the 13th: A New Beginning," it was also co-written by Kim "Texas Chain Saw Massacre" Henkel, and even featured crew members fresh off of John Carpenter's "Halloween." What could possibly go wrong, right? Well, sort of.

"The Unseen" is a visually appealing film; the cinematography is slick and there is a fair amount of atmosphere here (never mind the overuse of slow-motion shots at peak suspense sequences); it does have a fair share of problems though. Not only is is it staggeringly predictable, but it's also incredibly dull for the first hour. Mind, this is not a body count film by any means, but what it lacks in visual carnage, it fails to make up for in adequate suspense.

There are two key scenes that occur in the film's first hour that kept me drawn in, and they are admittedly well-executed. That's really all to be had here though. Family hysterics abound as the loopy couple who own the farmhouse exhibit their own neuroses, and the familial drama reaches its peak point in the film's goofy climax where the "unseen"'s true identity is revealed (not to much surprise). The film is in many ways similar to Denny Harris' "The Silent Scream," which was made the same year— they share very similar tonal elements, and also complement each other in terms of architectural dwellings of the villains; "The Unseen" lurks in the basement, while the villain in "The Silent Scream" resides in a secret attic. They actually would make a fantastic double feature, though "Silent Scream" is a bit more engaging of a film.

The performances here are actually decent, though Barbara Bach is lacking in the emotive department; she does make up for this though with a great performance during the finale sequences, letting some impressive screams loose. Stephen Furst deserves attention for a disturbing turn as the "unseen," and Sydney Lassick and Lelia Goldoni are madcap mad and wildly hysterical, respectively.

Overall, "The Unseen" is a decent offering from the genre, but doesn't seem to know whether it wants to be a suspense film or a slasher film. Its victim list is far too short to qualify it as a slasher picture, but it lacks the cohesive tension of a suspense film. What we end up with is a dull and ultimately predictable horror flick that is just enough to be slightly memorable, but not enough to truly stand out. There are some well-played sequences and a decent climax, but the majority of the picture is too plodding to truly engage with. 5/10.


0 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page