MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 514 this week

The First Power (1990)

 -  Crime | Horror | Thriller  -  6 April 1990 (USA)
5.6
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.6/10 from 2,104 users  
Reviews: 32 user | 17 critic

A killer is given the gas chamber after committing several demonic murders. His spirit is released and given power by the Devil. Now the cop that caught him before must find a way to do it ... See full summary »

Director:

Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 40 titles
created 19 Jan 2012
 
a list of 43 titles
created 12 Jul 2012
 
a list of 49 titles
created 6 months ago
 
a list of 28 titles
created 6 months ago
 
a list of 42 titles
created 3 weeks ago
 

Related Items

Search for "The First Power" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The First Power (1990)

The First Power (1990) on IMDb 5.6/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The First Power.

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Big Hit (1998)
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

To payoff his second girlfriend's debt, hitman Melvin Smiley undertakes a kidnapping job with his usual associates. In a world of prospective Jewish in-laws and late movie fees, the hitman ... See full summary »

Director: Kirk Wong
Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Lou Diamond Phillips, Christina Applegate
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Chucky's back as the doll possessed by the soul of a serial killer, butchering all who stand in his way of possessing the body of a boy.

Director: John Lafia
Stars: Alex Vincent, Jenny Agutter, Gerrit Graham
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

After a teenager has a terrifying vision of him and his friends dying in a plane crash, he prevents the accident only to have Death hunt them down, one by one.

Director: James Wong
Stars: Devon Sawa, Ali Larter, Kerr Smith
Halloween II (1981)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Laurie Strode is rushed to the hospital, while Sheriff Brackett and Dr. Loomis hunt the streets for Michael Myers, who has found Laurie at the Haddonfield Hospital.

Director: Rick Rosenthal
Stars: Jamie Lee Curtis, Donald Pleasence, Charles Cyphers
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Ten years after his original massacre, the invalid Michael Myers awakens and returns to Haddonfield to kill his seven-year-old niece on Halloween. Can Dr. Loomis stop him?

Director: Dwight H. Little
Stars: Donald Pleasence, Ellie Cornell, Danielle Harris
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A young couple is trapped in a remote town where a dangerous religious cult of children believe everyone over the age of 18 must be killed.

Director: Fritz Kiersch
Stars: Peter Horton, Linda Hamilton, R.G. Armstrong
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

When Kimberly has a violent premonition of a highway pileup she blocks the freeway, keeping a few others meant to die, safe...Or are they? The survivors mysteriously start dying and it's up to Kimberly to stop it before she's next.

Director: David R. Ellis
Stars: A.J. Cook, Ali Larter, Tony Todd
Comedy | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A man on the run is hunted by a demon known as the Collector.

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson
Stars: Billy Zane, William Sadler, John Kassir
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees return to terrorize the teenage population. Except this time, they're out to get each other, too.

Director: Ronny Yu
Stars: Robert Englund, Ken Kirzinger, Kelly Rowland
Sleepwalkers (1992)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A mother-and-son team of strange supernatural creatures come to town to seek out a virgin to feed on.

Director: Mick Garris
Stars: Brian Krause, Mädchen Amick, Alice Krige
Halloween (1978)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A psychotic murderer institutionalized since childhood for the murder of his sister, escapes and stalks a bookish teenage girl and her friends while his doctor chases him through the streets.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Donald Pleasence, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tony Moran
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A suburban American family is being stalked by a group of psychotic people who live in the desert, far away from civilization.

Director: Alexandre Aja
Stars: Ted Levine, Kathleen Quinlan, Dan Byrd
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Russell Logan
...
Tess Seaton
...
Patrick Channing
...
Detective Oliver Franklin (as Mykel T. Williamson)
...
Sister Marguerite
...
Commander Perkins
...
Lieutenant Grimes
Julianna McCarthy ...
Grandmother
Nada Despotovich ...
Bag Lady
...
Carmen
...
Mazza
...
Father Brian
Philip Abbott ...
Cardinal
David Gale ...
Monsignor
...
Priest
Edit

Storyline

A killer is given the gas chamber after committing several demonic murders. His spirit is released and given power by the Devil. Now the cop that caught him before must find a way to do it again. Written by Glenn J. Schworak <glenn@g-world.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Satan has created the perfect killer. One who cannot be stopped. Be warned.

Genres:

Crime | Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 April 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The First Power  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$22,424,195 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

During filming, numerous press materials listed the title as "Transit" - because of the killer's ability to jump between bodies as a way of moving around the city. Orion, the film's US distributor, decided in post-production to re-title the film "The First Power" so potential audience members would be more aware of its supernatural/horror elements. See more »

Goofs

Set in Los Angeles, yet Chicago's Sears Tower is visible in the background. See more »

Quotes

Tess Seaton: Patrick you can't keep on killing forever!
Patrick Channing: Wanna Bet!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Good Ol' Gal
Words and Music by Laura Perlman (as Laura J. Perlman) and Jeff Levi
Laughing Cloud Music, B.M.I.
Performed by Vince Vallot
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Severely under-rated B classic.
23 July 2011 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

Lou Diamond Phillips has no less than 95 IMDb acting credits since his 1984 debut as "Punk 1" in Interface – yeah I missed that one too. Many of them are starring roles too, though since his big break in La Bamba in 87 none are bigger than his supporting role in Young Guns. Running down his list of credits shows several familiar films where you sorta think you might've seen it but can't be sure… (From a personal perspective I think I have seen around 15 of LDP's films, NONE since the 90s finished. But I quite like a few of his 90s efforts: Renegades / The Big Hit / Young Guns / Disorganised Crime).

But especially The First Power. Watching this film provides all the evidence that you might need to write it off as a disposable B movie, only it is so much better than that. Sure there are cheesy moments and a couple of botched ideas, but in between there are some frankly inspired sequences and a couple of really effective parts.

According to me this is the most underrated film in recent history. So there's that. That should make LDP sleep a little more soundly in his cardboard box by the side of the road.

LDP is a cop named Russell Logan with a reputation for nabbing the big bad guys. Early in the film Logan nabs a guy known as the Pentagram Killer, a guy named Patrick Channing (Jeff Kober) after a lengthy investigation, a knife to the guts and an anonymous tip. It garners big press because Channing is the most notorious serial killer going, a guy who kills all his victims after various satanic rituals are performed, and he has taken many, many victims.

When Channing gets the electric chair it is seen as good riddance to bad rubbish, only Logan receives a call from the anonymous tipster reminding him that the death penalty wasn't part of the deal.

Too late, barbecued Channing for all! Who wants the lips, they're considered a delicacy? The only problem is that far from dreading and resisting his fate Channing seems to relish his early exit. Gee wonder why? (Kober as Channing is one of the strengths of the film, he is legitimately creepy looking and plays his role to the hilt.) So that's that then? A 25 minute film! I knew it was low budget but geez… No wait: there's more. After the execution Logan begins having visions and hearing things, If that wasn't bad enough someone has started killing again in the same way as the Pentagram Killer, all the way down to the locations and rituals.

Curioser and curioser.

To explain matters a red-headed psychic named Tess Seaton (Tracy Griffith) shows up unannounced at the station one day asking for Logan. After a brief back and forth Seaton gives information that only the cops or the killer would know; Logan is of course very intrigued. That is until Seaton claims that none other than the Pentagram Killer himself, Patrick Channing is behind the new batch of murders… obviously a wacko.

But then people close to Logan start getting bumped off, mainly cops. He has a change of heart and revisits Tess Seaton for her thoughts along with his partner Ali (Mykel T Williamson). Tess explains that Channing's spirit has been released by his execution and is now free to roam free and possess whichever body he wants in order to perform his naughty acts.

Channing preys on the weak and vulnerable, alkies, junkies and the homeless and destitute mostly, and if his "host" dies – or if he just gets bored – his spirit simply jumps to the next blissfully ignorant person. This makes him practically immortal and almost invulnerable, a welcome side issue seems to also be that the inhabited body is granted near superhero status. At times during the film they leap cars, walk through huge fireballs and jump off buildings unharmed, not a bad trade off for having one of Satan's disciples along for the ride.

After finally coming around and realising there may be a grain of truth to Tess's story, helped along by him witnessing some of Channing's handiwork in person (so long Ali!) – and having a chat with him no less – the pursuit is on.

So for the remainder of the film Logan and Tess are at turns hunting and hunted by Channing. They follow the trail to his childhood home, and consult with a local religious expert who explains the lengths they must go to kill him. All the while Channing keeps on killing and leaving a trail of previous discarded "hosts" in his wake.

There are two spectacular stunts, a couple of quality setpieces and a few quotable lines, and thankfully the ending is also strong.

Sure The First Power isn't a world beater and there are a couple of moments that show poor judgment, but if you like the vaguely sci-fi, supernatural genre there is much to admire about this film.

Final Rating – 8 / 10. LDP might not have been kept too busy in recent years – at least in high profile gigs – but there is some cinematic gold hidden away in the 90s that too many are yet to discover. Combine this film with Renegades and you have a great DVD night at home.


3 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Seinfeld bchelrprty
Fallen the_Iced_Earth
remake of the first power Pumpkinjack65
acid pit in the sewer?exploding acid!? pqmodean
Where is Resnikoff??? mar_tyr77
dvd? mandrax_numbdivizion
Discuss The First Power (1990) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?