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Fred Olen Ray
Sequal to Blood Cult, set two months after the events in the first movie, has the Devil-worshiping cult committing more murders and mayhem. Michael Hogan the brother of one of the victims from the first movie, arrives in the small town to investigate his brother's death and with the assistance of the old widow farmer Gracie Moore sets out to prove the existence of the Santanic cult in which the town doctor, the college dean, and a corrupt U.S. Senator are all involved with. However, not everything is what it appears to be... Written by
The original "Blood Cult" has a certain appeal to it that the sequel lacks, though the films are nearly the same in quality. First of all, in "BC" I was amused by the innovation of using a Betacam to shoot an entire film. This is just a plain old low-budget horror film.
"Revenge" is not entirely without merit, though. There are certain bright spots, like the death scene in the jacuzzi where the water turns red from all the blood. I think part of the problem lies in the screenplay. The story was written by Joe Vance (an actor from the first film), but the screenplay was by Christopher Lewis, the director. Lewis has admitted that horror is not his favorite genre, so the film seems to have an identity crisis, trying to choose whether it wants to be a slasher flick or a "Columbo"-type mystery.
The acting is worse too. Most of the good actors--like Joseph Hardt, Bennie Lee McGowan and Charles Ellis (in a brief appearance)--were brought back from the original film. The rest are horrible. John Carradine is given next-to-top billing just to grab people's attention. First of all, he's only in the film for about 6 minutes, and second of all, he sleeps through those 6 minutes. What is legendary actor John Carradine doing in a low-budget, direct-to-video horror flick? Beats me. I guess senility caught up to him in the later years of life. Unfortunately, great veteran actors don't always leave this world having made a great films for their final appearances. That surely wasn't the case with Rod Steiger, and several others. The film's main error was the casting of Patrick Wayne in the lead role. They say the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, but that may have not been the case with him. His father, as I was baffled to discover, is screen legend John Wayne. Yes, The Duke himself. Patrick Wayne is an utter stoneface, not showing a hint of emotion from start to finish. I expect these kinds of performances from actors in direct-to-video horror movies, but not from The Duke's son. Supposedly, he's a veteran actor as well, having been in many westerns, including the hit "Young Guns." Well, hopefully if I decide to check out those films, I'll be oddly surprised.
Overall, "Revenge" is mildly watchable and not an utter disaster, but if you're searching for a rental this shouldn't be at the top of your list.
My score: 5 (out of 10)
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