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The Dark Power (1985)

4.5
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Ratings: 4.5/10 from 228 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 13 critic

The spirits of dead Indians are haunting a couple's house, and they call in an exorcist, whose trademark is a black whip, to get rid of them.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lash La Rue ...
Ranger Girard (as Lash LaRue)
Anna Lane Tatum ...
Beth
...
Tammie
Mary Dalton ...
Mary
Paul Holman ...
Uncle Earl Coleman
Cynthia Farbman ...
Lynn Evans
Marc Matney ...
Craig Evans
Tony Shaw ...
David Cody
Robert Bushyhead ...
John "Four Eagles" Cody
Suzie Martin ...
Suzan
...
Alan
Steve Templeton ...
Dallas
Page Elizabeth Ray ...
Page
Eric Mikesall ...
Cletus
Tony Elwood ...
Courthouse Student
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Storyline

After an Indian medicine man dies, his house, which was built over the graves of four Indian sorcerers becomes a sorority home for a group of girls. Once the four Indians are awakened and terror ensues, a park ranger learns of the Indian's evil and plans to stop them. Written by Ryan

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Genres:

Horror

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Details

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Release Date:

26 February 1988 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Dark power  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Mary: Of course, some girls might be a little crazier about whips than others.
Ranger Girard: You know about my whip?
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Connections

References The Blues Brothers (1980) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Lively and amply lovable regional horror hoot
15 January 2010 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Taking some cool Native American folklore as its start up point, The Dark Power is every bit the cheeseball treat that I expected, but what gives it a leg up over other silly 80's horror is its level of heart and sincerity, in just about every minute one gets the feeling that the makers really cared about the film, dodgy editing of the finale aside. It tells of the house on Totem Hill, where four diabolical sorcerers buried themselves alive in preparation for a rampage when the prophesied "Evil Days" come. Of course, who should end up living in the house but some unsuspecting college students. Yep, its one of those kinda films, but with a significant bonus in the form of whip cracking former western star Lash LaRue as the wise and fearless Ranger Girard. Effortlessly charming with a convincingly bold and heroic edge, LaRue is a pleasure to watch. Though a screen veteran his gently assured turn always gels nicely with the rest of the cast, less experienced though they are. Several of them have this film as their sole credit, others have a few more but none are recognisable names. A shame, since the likes of perky Anna Lane Tatum as a reporter and Cynthia Farbman as a shrill and comically pathetic racist give nice and enthusiastic performances, whilst Cynthia Bailey does pretty sweet as a pretty and remarkably tolerant black girl. Everyone gets along together with an easy chemistry and moreover with just a few notable exceptions, the characters are all charming and friendly folk. It sounds naive and simplistic, but the way people talk, help each other out and generally behave in an unforced pleasant manner in the film give it a great likability. This easy virtue gives it a hook to keep it a decent time during its slow first half, then when bad things happen the suspense is heightened by the fact that one can actually care for the characters. And when bad things happen the film doesn't just kick up a notch but changes its tune too. Quite inspired really, the Toltec demons are built up throughout the first half as a terrifying evil presence, but rather than attempting to meet and likely failing audience expectations, the Toltec are nicely made up and savage, but with a clear comedic slant to their behaviour, like three undead stooges they bring as many laughs as they do gasps with their antics. There's a spot of gnarly low budget grue as well and a terrific whip wielding final showdown that can hardly fail to bring roars of appreciation from aficionados of obscure silliness. The film would have benefited from more tension and better constructed scenes in the final block, the way its all put together leaves somewhat to be desired and its a bit of a downer, a higher bodycount or a shot of good time sleaze would have made this one a sweeter ride too. But things all work out pretty nicely anyway, a game cast and soft sense of fun make this a cheesehounds delight for the most part. Its clearly a minor sort of an affair and many will find the first half drags too much or the second half too silly, the low budget is obvious and the film kinda daft. But its a pleasant film, a charming and comforting one, in short one that I enjoyed a good deal. Some distance from essential then, but well worth a watch if this sort of thing appeals.


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