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Witchcraft 8: Salem's Ghost (1996)

R | | Horror | Video 12 June 1996
A happy young couple moves into a "dream home" only to find it is a gateway for occult powers.
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Sonny Dunaway
...
Mary Ann Dunaway
Tom Overmyer ...
McArthur
David Weills ...
Mitch Baker
Anthoni Stewart ...
Gayle Baker
Jack van Landingham ...
Simon Renfro / The Warlock
Mai-Lis Holmes ...
Cathy
...
Dean Simpson
John E. Holiday ...
Fred Victor
...
Scully (as David Jean-Thomas)
Angela Tassoni ...
School Girl no. 1
Brandi Pearson ...
School Girl No. 2
Roddy Arnold ...
Cop No. 1
B. Allen ...
Cop #2
John Fromberg ...
Priest #1
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Storyline

A happy young couple moves into a "dream home" only to find it is a gateway for occult powers.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality, horror violence and some language

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

12 June 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Satan's Ghost  »

Box Office

Budget:

$48,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

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Did You Know?

Connections

Follows Witchcraft III: The Kiss of Death (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

The Warlock Song
Produced and Arranged by Steve Jacobson
Words and Music by Steve Jacobson
Piano, Guitar, Keyboards and Bass by Steve Jacobson
Lead and Background Vocals by Scott Jones
Drums by Chris Gross
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User Reviews

 
Bad erotic horror, as this is really neither. Some good props, though...
1 September 2005 | by (Upstate New York) – See all my reviews

Though this is the eighth entry in the Witchcraft series, and that title appears in the movie itself, on the video box it only appears as "Salem's Ghost: Witchcraft." It doesn't have any continuity with the other titles in the series. It would be easy to overlook this entry in the (perhaps deservedly) overlooked series as a result, and apart from the couple short reviews at the IMDb, no one online seems to have reviewed this movie. I feel sorry for anyone who bought the $40.00 laserdisc... let this review serve as a warning.

This is the only title in the series not to even mention lawyer/warlock Will Spanner (who went by other names in the first two). He's not in part ten either, but one of the other recurring characters, Detective Lutz, does mention him.

In Salem in 1692, a muscular shirtless tattooed warlock named Simon is stabbed by a large cross-shaped dagger decorated with arcane symbols similar to his tattoos. Men dressed in monks' robes restrain him, burn him alive, then let his crispy corpse fall into a casket also decorated with symbols. He's put into a tomb behind the dagger, which is in turn locked behind a door decorated with a pentagram in a circle.

300 years later, a couple are moving into a new home, a moderately sized mansion (whose interior resembles the one a man moves into in the erotic horror movie Mirror, Mirror III: The Voyeur). They bought it from the Protestant Church of England! It has a weathervane with strange symbols. The man experiences claustrophobia in a closet, and they have some honey, grapes, spaghetti, and whipped cream and rather than becoming ill, they have a short sex scene. Their skin is dirty from food, and they wind up on the floor that is slick with sticky liquid and no doubt e-coli. It's not a very erotic scene at all, in spite of some nudity (maybe it would be different for someone with a food fetish). The music features a woman singing poor scat! From the end credits, that would seem to have been "Doo Die, Doo Die" by Miriam Cutler.

The man is Sonny Dunaway, who is teaching a class on witchcraft at Salem College, where a pretty redhaired student shows some interest in him. Sonny finds his house has a large cobwebbed basement, and they have a goofy neighbor with a ditzy (and badly dubbed!) blond wife who wants to inspect the plumbing in his basement. If you can't guess that the neighbor, Mitch, uncovers the locked door from the opening scene in the basement, you're pretty slow!

While Sonny is teaching his students upstairs (he's inexplicably brought them to his home), Mitch enters the crypt and pries off the bejeweled dagger, and red light emerges. He takes the dagger to his home (which even his ditzy wife knows is a bad idea), and they have a sex scene. These movies are almost certainly aimed at men, since the women are relatively attractive, and the men are at best of average looks.

Sonny and his wife have another sex scene, this time thankfully in bed and without food. This is much more of a typical sex scene, smoky and tinted blue, much more skin, and saxophone music. Sonny has a nightmare in which everything is white, and he falls into a bathtub filled with red water. He then sees the now fanged Simon floating in his bedroom, and watches helplessly as Simon makes out with his wife, and then throws him out the window. In the morning everything seems OK.

While the student starts to put the movies on Sonny, his wife imagines there's blood in the kitchen, and then she feels herself up in front of a mirror, and then in the bathtub (cue smoky haze and sax). After she gets out, there's a bunch of poltergeist-type activity, and coincidentally Clarence McArthur, a priest from the Protestant Church of England arrives in a taxi with a bad accent. Mitch shows off the dagger to a guy named Fred, and is now acting as sinister as a goofy person can.

McArthur is a witch hunter, warns them of the witch's ghost, and wants Sonny to become a witch hunter too, and they stake crosses all over the yard. Sonny has another dream in which he watches his wife make out with Simon, and after he wakes up they find unpleasant things in the attic, and meanwhile Mitch is growing weirder.

Sonny and Cathy have a sex scene, but is it really him? No, via a bad morphing effect a still of his face is transformed into a badly distorted and red-tinted photo of Simon, then back again. McArthur cooks up some green goo (why?), and a bad video transition takes us to some sort of ritual in which they sit in a triangle around a golden pyramid while he chants "OM." You know, like all Christian exorcists do!

There's an impalement, and a face-ripping, some stabbings, and someone is crated up in a coffin (bet you can guess who).

Can the evil Warlock's ghost be defeated? Will the priest get to have a sex scene too? What's going on with sinister goof Mitch? Do you care? Guess you'll have to watch it, you poor fool! I don't recommend it.

A thirteenth Witchcraft movie is currently in production. One wonders if there'll be a box set of all of them, and if they'll keep making as well. I think the only horror series that has outpaced this one is the Asian horror anthology series Troublesome Night, though Friday the 13th is starting to catch up.


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