Incubus (1966) Poster

(1966)

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8/10
Fascinating, unique, underappreciated
rch42729 January 2001
Writer/Director Leslie Stevens was previously best-known as the man behind the TV series "The Outer Limits", and it shows. Everything about this film is moody, atmospheric and vaguely threatening, while still tinged with beauty. The real surprise is that "Incubus" is much better than just an extended Outer Limits.

Shot in Big Sur on the central California coast in just two weeks and under a very small budget, the film more than makes up for those limitations with an imaginative script, fantastic visuals and well-nuanced acting. William Shatner gives what I consider to be the most subtle, unmannered performance of his career as the protagonist -- a weary, wounded soldier. The succubus who aims to cause his downfall is more than ably portrayed by Allyson Ames, who would've been quite at home in any Bergman film.

Bergman is, in fact, a reference point, with a few scenes obviously inspired by "Persona", "The Seventh Seal" and perhaps "Wild Strawberries". Other influences seem to be some of Kurosawa's early work and even Greek tragedies.

Many people consider the fact that every bit of dialogue (and even the credits) were in the Esperanto language, to be merely a gimmick. In fact, it was an inspired decision, and makes the film independent of time and place; perfectly complimenting the otherworldly mood. Most of the actors do quite well with it, and after a few minutes it sounds natural, and a bit like a cross between Swedish and Latin.

There are a few niggling problems: the actress who portrays the older succubus has a terrible declaimatory style, there are occasionally irrational plot turns, and worse -- the obtrusive subtitles that block out a large swath of the screen. This was necessitated by the fact that only one print of the film survived, and it had had French subtitles printed on it. When the print was rediscovered, director Stevens had to restore it for English-speaking audiences by blocking English subtitles over the top of the French!

I must mention the score, by Outer Limits composer Dominic Frontiere, which perfectly compliments the film. Conrad Hall's cinematography is at times breathtaking -- especially in one scene where Shatner wanders through a field by moonlight, the grasses swirling around him.

The film's denouement stays just on the better side of moralizing and manages to avoid heavy-handed Christian references. Indeed, the statues of Jesus, Mary and various saints in the village chapel seem just as threatening as the demons outside.

Although not quite as morally ambiguous as "The Wicker Man" (and probably shot for 1/10 the budget and in 1/10th the time), Incubus nevertheless is one of my favorite "horror" films of the 1960s, and well worth viewing. By the way, I disagree with the other poster suggested that Incubus is best viewed in a large group. I suggest that the intimate scale of this film works best when watched alone on a rainy night. Prepare to be frightened, disturbed and surprised.

A macabre footnote: within a year, both the actress who portrayed Shatner's sister and the actor who played the incubus would commit suicide.
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Ingmar Bergman Meets `The Outer Limits'
genekim20 June 2003
It's tempting to jokingly call this the best William Shatner movie in Esperanto I've ever seen, but it deserves better than that - it's a delightfully weird low-budget horror film that might best be described as "Ingmar Bergman Meets `The Outer Limits.'" The reference to the 60s TV series is apt, since several of the creative forces from that show were behind this film: writer-director Leslie Stevens; future Oscar-winning cinematographer Conrad L. Hall, and composer Dominic Frontiere (although I suspect they simply borrowed his "Outer Limits" themes to score this film). In fact, "Incubus" looks, sounds and feels so much like an episode of the "The Outer Limits," there were times I half-expected it to fade to commercial; a flash of nudity reminds us this isn't a TV show.

In "Incubus," a seductive female demon - a succubus - named Kia becomes bored with luring morally corrupt men to their eternal doom and sets her sights on a virtuous soldier named Marc, played by a pre-"Star Trek" Shatner (who guest-starred in an "Outer Limits" episode titled "Cold Hands, Warm Heart"). The bucolic out-of-time setting reminds me of the medieval Sweden of Bergman's "The Seventh Seal," and Hall's black & white cinematography is starkly beautiful. The Esperanto dialogue lends an exotic flavor with its vaguely recognizable European word roots. It also dresses up dialogue that might have been too over-the-top in English (in his DVD commentary, Shatner can't help chuckling when Kia declares, "There are no heroes burning in the fires of Hell!"). I'm reminded of the old joke that a movie seems more "artistic" if it's in a foreign language with subtitles - I guess Esperanto, originally intended to be a universal language, effectively makes "Incubus" a "foreign film" to just about everyone.

Shatner, as the young, handsome, dashing hero, is unmistakably Shatner, even in Esperanto. Allyson Ames is frostily beautiful as the evil Kia, while Ann Atmar is sweetly vulnerable as Marc's sister, Arndis.

I don't mean to over-praise "Incubus." It's a very well done little film, comparable to the original "Carnival of Souls" - if you don't expect too much, you may be pleasantly surprised at how much there is. It's definitely worth a look.
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8/10
unique art film
sennomo2 August 2003
I give this film high marks specifically because of its originality. Incubus is a truly unique art film. Do not watch it as you would watch most films. Most of the people who dis this film are illogically comparing it with mainstream films.

If you like Shatner's early work (e.g., Twighlight Zone), you'll like him in Incubus. The rest of the actors do a generally good job, too.

If you know Esperanto, I warn you, the Esperanto in this film is horrible. It is my understanding that the director did not want the dialogue to be understood. Each member of the cast trips over a few lines here and there, sometimes so badly that it should be obvious even to those who don't know Esperanto. The funniest thing is that Shatner pronounces Esperanto with a somewhat French accent and he pauses just like he does in English.

(La ideo, ke Esperanto aperas en la filmo varbas; tamen, la esperantoparolado mem en la filmo ja acxas.)

If you don't know Esperanto, do not watch this film for the Esperanto dialogue. It's not a good sample.

Everbody, watch Incubus if you like creepy, experimental art films.
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8/10
An obscure oddity well worth seeking out
capkronos25 February 2004
Made by some of the same folks who worked on the great Outer Limits television series, this little-known gem (shot entirely in Esperanto, a language conceived to become a universal dialect in the late 19th Century) is definitely one-of-a-kind and worth checking out. William Shatner stars as war vet and all-around good and decent guy who lives with his sister (some Freudian implications are present) in a nameless and nearly-vacant coastal village. He is briefly led astray by a seductive, blonde devil-worshipper (Allyson Ames) under false pretenses...he thinks it's for the mutual attraction and she is basically plotting to kill him and deliver another soul over to Satan.

The remastering job is a crystal clear b/w print, gorgeously shot by Conrad L. Hall (AMERICAN BEAUTY) around picturesque Big Sur locations. Director Leslie Stevens achieves some amazing shots, throws in some great camera-work and the films has faint echoes of CARNIVAL OF SOULS and many Mario Bava films. The plotting (Shatner falling in love in the course of an afternoon and some heavy-handed religious themes) is often at odds with the is lyrical and poetic tone of the film, but it has many standout sequences (including a winged demon seen only in shadow, a solar eclipse, the human "incubus" rising from the grave, an opening murder of the succubus drowning a drunken man in the ocean...) to recommend it.
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Didn't know this was in Esperanto when I rented it!
scarletminded2 April 2004
Warning: Spoilers
May contain spoilers.

This should be a must view, since it is the only film I know of that is in Esperanto. Other than the language, which gives the movie a dreamy quality, the acting is good and it reminds me of older horror films and Bergman, movies where the plot was conveyed through dialog and emotions with less action scenes.

The plot is about a female demon who is cursed by the love of a good man. It is a very interesting idea that evil could be hurt by kindness and it still rings true today and doesn't look dated. It is more watchable than a Bergman film too.

The DVD has a lot of extras like commentary and interviews, which make the film more fun. I love knowing how films were made and this one had to have a second script written so they could show it to the people they were renting the church from! Also, there are creepy stories about murder and suicide post shooting, which make it all the more horrific when you watch it again.

Incubus is one of those rare gems that you have to see for many reasons. I am glad SciFi helped restore it.
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Uncanny
michael.e.barrett11 May 2001
It is correct to compare this independent, low-budget, black-and-white atmospheric horror film with others of its decade, such as "Carnival of Souls" and "Night Tide," and it's also correct to compare it with Bergman, since there is clearly a touch of "Seventh Seal" here and possibly a bit of "Virgin Spring" and "The Devil's Eye." But I'd like to point this out: the most obvious comparison people make is with "Persona" because of the strikingly composed "sister" shots, which evoke the famous profile compositions of Bergman's movie, yet "Persona" was made a year later, in 1966! ("Hour of the Wolf" was made three years later, in 1968.) Therefore, while we can say Leslie Stevens and Conrad Hall were influenced by Bergman, it's also reasonable to suppose that since this film played at the Venice Film Festival, Bergman might have been influenced by "Incubus"!

The awkward moments--I'm thinking especially of the last scene--create a rare accident that only occurs in low-budget films. The effects are so obvious and ludicrous that you're half-inclined to ridicule the scene with an "Oh, come on!" Yet at the same time, what it's trying to get across is so inherently disturbing that you also feel the frisson of real horror. It's a kind of accidental alienation effect. This state of conflict in the viewer's mind--half pitched out of the spell and rejecting what we see for what we know, and half shocked into ghastly conviction--this frame of mind is where is the uncanny takes effect.
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6/10
If for no other reason....
DannyNoonan689 June 2007
A very weird, quietly creepy horror film... I think a big chunk of the weirdness and creepiness goes down to the fact that the film is entirely in Esperanto (and also the bit with the goat).

Put together by Outer Limits staffers (who were apparently obsessed with artificial languages), the production values are not dissimilar to 50s/60s TV (the odd camera shadow, out of focus evil beings, etc), but the effects are strangely effective and the use of sound is genuinely creepy in a way that made me think of "Eraserhead".

This film is worth seeing if for no other reason than to see William Shatner overacting in Esperanto. Most of the film he keeps the overacting in check, but about an hour in he clearly can't help himself.
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10/10
Unique Moral Fable
robert_deveau22 August 2003
Like an orphaned episode of "The Outer Limits", the film INCUBUS wrestles with issues of morality within the framework of a timeless fable. The use of Esperanto allows for dialogue that might have felt overblown if spoken in English, but here fits neatly into the story's dreamlike context. A strong script from director Leslie Stevens, brilliant cinematography from the great Conrad Hall, an evocative score from Dominic Frontiere (all three from "Outer Limits"), and fine work from a good cast (William Shatner is subtle and believable) all add up to a unique film. If you're tired of cops and serial killers and want to use your imagination, give INCUBUS a try.
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8/10
A must-see for psychotronic film buffs
Pa2rick12 June 1999
This gloriously weird film, long thought lost, recently resurfaced when a single print (in excellent condition) was discovered in the Cinematheque Francaise in Paris. It has proved well worth the wait. Want to see a pre-Trek William Shatner woo a sexy demoness entirely in Esperanto? Well here's your chance (just don't use this film as a guide to the language -- the actors' Esperanto pronunciation is pretty awful). The cinematography (by Academy Award winner Conrad Hall) is top-notch and makes this film a must-see for any film buff, psychotronic or otherwise.
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9/10
An arrestingly off-beat & atmospheric mid 60's horror oddity
Woodyanders22 April 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Do you speak Esperanto? Well, I sure don't. But fortunately this intriguingly quirky and moody horror oddity -- the only motion picture ever made using the still active experimental universal language of Esperanto -- comes complete with subtitles. On a remote and mysterious magical island populated by dangerous demons and seductive spirits the beautiful and ambitious young sea siren Kia (the lovely and enchanting Allyson Ames) gets bored with sending wayward souls to hell, so she decides to go after bigger and more demanding game by leading the good and virtuous Marc (the one and only William Shatner in a surprisingly sturdy and subdued performance) astray with lust. When Marc instead corrupts Kia with the purity of his love, the enraged Kia summons a lethal demonic being (effectively embodied by the handsome and muscular Milos Milos) to rape Marc's equally upstanding younger sister Arndis (the cute and appealing Ann Atmar) and thus provoke Marc to kill the incubus out of revenge, thereby tainting his soul through violence. Deftly written and directed by "The Outer Limits" TV series creator Leslie Stevens, strikingly photographed in exquisitely sharp and stark black and white by the great Conrad Hall, rich in eerie otherworldly atmosphere and further graced by gorgeous misty forest locations, this compelling, intelligent and provocative fright film parable about faith, corruption, redemption and temptation makes for extremely fascinating and stimulating viewing. Fresh, original and highly recommended.
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7/10
The eternal struggle between Good and Evil
sol-kay26 April 2005
**SPOILERS** In the town of Nomen Tuum there's this well, the Deer Well, that attracts people from all over in the hope of giving them powers beyond their abilities in enhancing their vain and selfish desires. As well as curing their ailments and illnesses.

At the beginning of the film "Incubus" we see this big klutz Olin, Robert Fortier, taking a drink from the well and spitting it out because it's as salty as sea water. All of a sudden Kia, Allyson Ames, appears out of nowhere and tempts the poor helpless oaf to follow her to the seashore for a romp on the sand with her and him naked. Falling on his head and with the seawater covering him Kia steps on him causing Olin to drown. Kia is a demon in woman's form and she uses her beauty to tempt men and women to go astray and commit evils that cause them to end up in the domain of the King of Darkness thus losing their souls.

Kia unsatisfied with gathering corrupt person to the Kingdom of Darkness wants something of a more changeling and rewarding task for her to preform. Like getting a incorruptible soul for her to defile and present it to the Devil. But Kia is told by her sister and fellow demon Amael, Eloise Hardt, that it's too dangerous to confront someone thats truly good because he can corrupt her in the opposite direction. This can make her a kind and loving person or even cause her to have a soul of her own.

Unheeding her sister's warning Kia focus' in on young Marc and his sister Arndis, Willian Shatner & Ann Atwar, in an attempt to corrupt them and send their souls to the King of Darkness as a gift. But in the end Kia learned the hard way what her sister told her about the dangers of confronting a good kind and loving soul. It turned that even the dreaded demon the Incusbus ,Milos Milos, who was summoned from Hell to help her, couldn't stop Marc. From not only destroying Kia and her fellow women demons but himself as well from having the ability to do their evil work for the Devil.Marc's kind and loving soul turned Kia away from the evil that she was under and made her as pure and good like himself. Thus leaving the Devil with fried egg on his face.

Re-mastered and digitally enhanced the movie "Incusbus" is as sharp clear and crisp as it was when it was first released some 40 years ago back in 1965. Director Leslie Stevens gives the film that Ingmar Bergman look and feel that has you mesmerized all through the movie. The stunning black and white photography is about as sharp and effective as you would see in any Bergman movie. A minor classic that has been uncovered after all these years and is more then worth you time seeing and enjoying.
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8/10
Fun, unusual and a little creepy
btmccoy30 September 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This movie is so bad...its good! Even in Esperanto, William Shatner's signature style of stop-start speaking and over gesturing comes through and makes what would be an ordinary bad, bad movie truly entertaining.

What is most interesting is the parallels between this film and the quintessential Star Trek plot. Namely, evil alien seductress falls for dashing Shatner and turns from her wicked ways.

This film is certain not to scare but it is well shot and has enough giggles to keep you interested. It is also the only film ever shot in Esperanto and the strange but familiar sounds of the language make it creepy, if not scary. It is a truly unique film and you should check it out
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5/10
love wins over evil
jcholguin5 June 2002
William Shatner's name was enough for me to view this film, and I was not disappointed. The first 5 minutes or so I almost stopped viewing because it was a low budget film, but I wanted to see just the Shatner was going to do in this movie. He played Marc, a soldier that is recovering from a wound and is living with his beloved sister. Kia is the evil woman that leads men to their death, but all of these men were evil in the first place and were easy to trick to their death. Kia wants a real challenge, a man that is good in which she can put all her tricks to use, a battle of good vs evil. Marc is a hero because he faced death for the good of his men. Kia meets Marc and decides that he will be the one in this battle. Kia doesn't know the power of love, and gradually falls in love with Marc. He is totally in love with her and cannot see the evil of the incubus or of kia's mentor, an older woman who is totally evil. The sister is killed because of the blindness of Marc's love. The climax of the film ends with Kia's evil nature submitting to the good of love, but the ultimate price of the battle falls upon both Marc and Kia. A film worth watching.
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10/10
Fantastic! A must see movie!
discreet-330 August 1999
This is a must see movie for fans of William Shatner; and, in fact, this is a must see movie even for people who are not fans of William Shatner! This movie was made by the same people who brought us the original Outer Limits TV series in the early to mid 1960s. The film was hailed as an incredible success when it first came out; and, in fact, William Shatner's performance was so fantastic that the critics were speechbound! He was thought to be the up and coming successor to Olivier due to this film (well, I will admit that some of his previous roles were helpful also). It is the only American film that used Esperanto as the only language within the film. The effect of that experiment is truely astounding as well as brillant (How many times have you heard Count Dracula speaking English when you knew that he was Romanian? In how many James Bond films have you heard the bad guys speak only English even when they weren't talking to Bond? The use of Esperanto makes the film a little bit more believeable; and chilling too!). But, don't worry if your Esperanto isn't fresh; English subtitles are used. This film was fantastic and thought of highly, but was lost in a freak accident and therefore was not seen for over 30 years. A cinematic masterpiece was lost, or so it seemed. A few years ago the sole surviving print was found in a film library in France. From that, and with the help of high tech restoration processes, the video is born and a masterpiece thought to be lost is now with us again after an absence of over 3 decades!
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1/10
reaches new levels of suckdom.
cableaddict5 February 2004
This either deserves 1/2 star for being ABSURDLY bad, or ten stars for being so bad it's of another universe, thus belonging entirely to it's own genre.

Imagine a Saturday Night Live skit, spoofing Bergman, only without the humor.

Imagine an episode of Twilight Zone, except with virtually no plot whatsoever, and in which the actors seem to read all their lines from cue cards, and for the first time.

Image a really bad exploitation film, WITHOUT the sex, running in semi-slow motion.

You get the idea.

Don't EVER waste any money renting this.

However, if it comes around on cable, by all means check it out for the "I just don't believe someone made this" factor. Get REALLY drunk first, and have lots of stuff ready to throw at the screen. Use a cheap TV, 'cause you may need to throw something through the glass.
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9/10
Amazing and surreal art/horror film!
kinojunkie27 July 2005
I've known about this little film for a while now and thought that it would be nothing more than a cinematic oddity featuring William Shatner speaking Esperanto. I was shocked at how great of a film it is! Set some time in the past it tells the story of a woman who seduces and kills men in order to send their souls to hell. It's all getting rather boring for her so she decides to up the ante and attempt to corrupt a "pure" soul that ends up being Shatner himself. The film is beautifully photographed in black and white by the legendary Conrad Hall. It oozes with creepy atmosphere. The story is very Christian and puritanical, but has a wonderful fairy tale feeling to it. The use of Esperanto is actually effective in creating the feeling of a different time and world. This great film actually reminded me of a Bergam or Fellini film at times and I can't recommend it enough. I was amazed! The only short comings are the (at times) over the top performances (mostly from Shatner not surprisingly) and the abrupt ending. I will definitely be watching this one again.
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8/10
Pleasant Surprise
bjgaines28 September 2002
A genuinely entertaining film, not just a camp/MST-3K experience.

Yes, the Esperanto dialogue is bizarre, but it lends an other-worldliness that fits perfectly. Shatner's performance is solid, and he sounds more convincing than any of the others, some of whom are too obviously pronouncing every word phonetically. The cinematography is sensationally moody and the story compelling. It compares favourably to the best episodes of the original Twilight Zone.
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7/10
Better than I expected
Wiebke22 June 2000
This movie was a lot better than I expected. I thought it would only be a novelty, just a test to see if you could do a whole movie in Esperanto, but it was very well done for a low-budget movie. Good movie, William Shatner acting was way above his usual par, special effects were NOT cheezy. I would see this again.
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highly recommended for cineastes and cinephiles alike
poledub19 June 2000
After reading Ben Letzler's review in Film Threat, I took Incubus producer Tony up on his VHS offer and what a surprise! This Ingmar Bergman-meets-Ed Wood thriller gives us William Shatner in the metaphysical role he was born to play. Most memorable are the scenes filmed at the Carmel Mission (just up the road from the San Juan Batista Mission of Hitchcock's Vertigo) and the eerie beach scenes where the witches plot to overcome Love and win Shatner's soul. And you've gotta love that everyone speaks in Esperanto, the international language of peace. Highly recommended.
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6/10
Good...but could have been better...
jcaraway330 May 2010
Warning: Spoilers
I'm not quite sure how to feel about this one. I want to like these art house type movies, but they can be a bit dull at times like this one. I liked it's use of Esperanto. It, and the fact that it takes place in a fictional place make it seem otherworldly, but it could have had more eerie moments and less of Shatner and the rest of the cast wandering seemingly aimlessly through the woods. And speaking of Shatner, I thought it was funny that he sounds less hammy while speaking in the artificial and ridiculous language "Esperanto" than he did in Star Trek. Anyway, I digress. I liked the movie's simplistic ideas regarding good and evil, and the ending gave me goosebumps, but...it's just one of those movies my mind refused to be disappointed by but I still kind of was. I went in with high expectations and left refusing to admit it wasn't as good as I had expected. It wasn't as scary as I wanted it to be.
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5/10
Self-infatuated, Bergmanesque horror movie spoken in Esperanto...
moonspinner551 May 2010
Esperanto, a nineteenth-century "all purpose"/international language, almost made a comeback with this stark, moody thriller--thought to be lost for many years until a surviving print resurfaced. Leslie Stevens wrote and directed this tale of a beautiful but soulless female demon, working for the God of Darkness, who tempts and lures men with tortured souls to their deaths in the ocean; tiring of her unchallenged routine, she sets out to destroy a pure, heroic man whose only defense is the power of love. Stevens seems to have overdosed on Ingmar Bergman movies, and is too enamored of Conrad Hall's artistic black-and-white cinematography to really get a grip on his narrative (certainly the editor could have cut back on the many shots of William Shatner wandering...wandering...). However, the ambiance of this film is startling and intriguing, Stevens writes some literate dialogue, and several of Hall's visual compositions are haunting. ** from ****
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7/10
An interesting experiment....but I am glad Esperanto never took off as a language!
MartinHafer5 March 2009
The concept for this full-length film as well as its genesis are truly weird. The guiding force behind the television show "The Outer Limits" (Leslie Stevens) decides to produce the first (and probably only) full-length American-made Esperanto film--with a plot that is strongly influenced by his TV show as well as Ingmar Bergman's THE SEVENTH SEAL! Talk about strange! Yet, oddly, the experiment works, though in hindsight I am glad the idea never really took off and resulted in further films in this so-called "international language".

The film begins with a Satan worshiping siren who has delighted in luring people to their deaths. However, apparently this is getting rather old and this lady confides to an older Devil-loving lady that she wonders what it's all about, why they only take the souls of evil ones and why the Lord of Darkness, if he's so powerful, needs their help anyway! And, in fact, she'd like to try battling against a righteous soul instead of the typical damned ones! Well, the older lady will have none of that and counsels her to do her job and get such foolish ideas out of her head. But, given that the younger lady is apparently quite stupid, she sets out to seduce a "nice guy"--who turns out to be a young William Shatner. The problem is that once the evil incubus (a soul-stealing demon) is summoned to take Shatner, the siren has fallen in love with him and is torn between her duty and doing what is right.

While all this probably sounds a bit silly to someone who has never seen the film, it somehow works--mostly due to the efforts of Stevens. An old score from one of the "Outer Limits" shows is recycled and sounds very, very eerie--fitting the action quite well. In addition, the black and white cinematography is lovely as well as the odd yet appropriate camera angles. These work together to make the film seem other-worldly--like it occurs perhaps on another world or in another time.

As for the actors, they did a pretty good job and I was amazed at their speaking this odd language. In particular, it was a bit jarring to see Shatner both speak the language AND actually do a competent job acting. In some shows and movies, he has a tendency to way over-act--and especially to over-emote. Here, however, he seems quite capable as the nice guy who cannot allow himself to give in to temptation. Sadly, however, according to IMDb and interviews with surviving film crew, two of the main actors would be dead within a year of the completion of the film--one due to suicide and another to a murder/suicide! As they said, the film had the "curse of the incubus" on it!

While I am sure this film would not interest most people due to its artsy style, it is entertaining and worth seeing if you are a patient person. Spooky, strange and amazingly successful for a project that reportedly cost less than $100,000 to produce. And, of all the many, many Esperanto films out there, this one is surely the best!
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8/10
Lovecraft filmed by Ingmar Bergman?
El-Stumpo1 November 2007
Warning: Spoilers
Incubus is one of those films that seem to have appeared from a parallel universe - a wonderfully atmospheric film (imagine Lovecraft filmed by Ingmar Bergman!) that was completely lost until the mid 90s. A floating allegory set on a mythical island, a pre-Star Trek Shatner stars as Marc, an innocent Christ-like figure tempted by a sister tag-team of succubi out collecting souls for their infernal master. The younger demoness Kia (played by Allyson Ames) falls in love with his purity which has dire consequences for both of them. After Kia runs screaming from a church Marc has blissfully dragged her to, her sister Amael (Eloise Hardt) raises an Incubus from the pit of hell (which, despite being some scaffolding and cheap theatrical lighting tricks, is a sight to warm the cockles of Brueghel's heart).

Esperanto was devised in the late 1800s by Ludovic Zamenhof, an idealistic professor who wanted a universal language to unite humanity. It was quite popular until the Great Wars, which proved once and for all that mankind is destined to remain dumb, angry and divided. Beatnik and would-be mystic director Leslie Stevens obviously shared Zamenhof's idealism, and thus Incubus stands as the language's only feature. It's a bizarre soundtrack to Stevens' visuals - stark black and white photography, beautifully composed, with the robed figures representing a grand battle between good and evil. It's as if Bergman's The Seventh Seal was painstakingly transcribed and translated into pigeon Norwegian.

The results are surreal, to say the least, and the final appearance of the Devil as a bedraggled farmyard goat is too much, even for a low-budget horror film with SERIOUS pretensions. Arty, insane, and with Shatner reportedly spouting the worst accent in the history of Esperanto, we unleash the beast from the pit: the 1965 Incubus.
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9/10
Incubus
Scarecrow-8820 August 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Kia(Allyson Ames)is a succubus working for the God of Darkness who is bored with luring already lost souls to hell. She wants to be a major factor in the Dark Lord's legion and thirsts for the desire to turn a pure soul to the dark side. Kia's sister Amael(Eloise Hardt), warns her that doing this might be a very bad idea, but she is determined to carry it out. The challenge she hungers for becomes quite great when she chooses Marc(William Shatner), a man who is deemed heroic by a warning Amael who says he saved several men from a fire without any fear of death. Marc's faith in God is strong. When Amael sees that Kia has fallen in love with Marc, she sees an opportunity to turn Marc over by abusing his sister Arndis(Ann Atmar)by calling an incubus(Milos Milos)to harm her. This film is truthfully about good versus evil, an age-old theme which never tires because so many difficult stories spurn from it. In this film, Marc will have to overcome a lot of adversity because the evil side are nefariously sneaky in causing great harm to your emotional state, challenging your will of purity at it's core. On the other side, Kia is shown as a woman of pure evil who finds love and acceptance from a pure man she can not seem to separate from. The film is very, very good..better than I possibly could imagine. It plays like a feature length "OUter Limits" episode and I was kind of hoping it would be that way. It has eerie, darkened black and white photography and the music is creepy. The way it is shot is also a plus..a lot of talented people came together to make this film. The novelty of it being in Esperanto does increase the film's cult status, but it's the overall ominous mood and the way the characters are lensed for which I'd say try this little recently restored gem(actually the restoration was produced by SCi-fi Channel).
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