6.5/10
2,504
73 user 63 critic

Messiah of Evil (1973)

R | | Horror | 2 May 1973 (USA)
A young woman goes searching for her missing artist father. Her journey takes her to a strange Californian seaside town governed by a mysterious undead cult.

Directors:

Willard Huyck, Gloria Katz (uncredited)

Writers:

Willard Huyck (screenplay), Gloria Katz (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Greer ... Thom
Marianna Hill ... Arletty (as Mariana Hill)
Joy Bang ... Toni
Anitra Ford ... Laura
Royal Dano ... Joseph Lang
Elisha Cook Jr. ... Charlie
Charles Dierkop ... Gas Attendant
Bennie Robinson Bennie Robinson ... Albino Trucker
Morgan Fisher Morgan Fisher ... Unknown
Emma Truckman Emma Truckman ... Unknown
Dyanne Asimow Dyanne Asimow ... Unknown (as Dyanne Simon)
Herb Margolis Herb Margolis ... Unknown
Alex Michaels Alex Michaels ... Unknown
Walter Hill
Laurie Charlap-Hyman Laurie Charlap-Hyman ... Unknown
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Storyline

A young woman goes searching for her missing artist father. Her journey takes her to a strange Californian seaside town governed by a mysterious undead cult.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In order to live, they will take you one by one ... and no one will hear you scream! See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 May 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Messiah of Evil: The Second Coming See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The character of Arletty is named after the French actress best known from Les enfants du paradis (1945). See more »

Goofs

The sound towards the end somehow develops a three-second delay from when the characters open their mouths to when we actually hear their voices. See more »

Quotes

Thom: Give a girl a pair of shoes, and she walks out on you.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The recent DVD release (under the title Messiah of Evil) contains a version of the film that omits the song "Hold on to Love" that opens and closes some versions of the film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in From Manila with Love (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Hold On To Love
Music and Lyrics by Eliane Tortel
Sung by Raun MacKinnon
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Aesthetic and unique, in good ways
27 December 2004 | by jay-bethkeSee all my reviews

Virtually all of the praise I've ever seen for this film comes with the word "but", followed by a list of flaws. This is undeserved. True, the film (in its DVD double-bill with The Devil's Nightmare form) has some minor editing issues; true, it has cheesy pop music you'd never find if you search for years (I personally consider this a GOOD thing); true, the film is not a fast paced zombie-action flick with grue and butchery (in fact, it's more cult than zombie film). BUT, what the movie does have going for it is an original edge and some sharp, moody scenes that are rare for the era. Some comments say it is slow ...my view is that the authors of such comments are simply more used to modern, faster-paced cinema. The scenes are aesthetically delightful but certainly not as artsy (negatively so) as some commentors claim (the artsy-ness doesn't really go beyond the story itself: DO NOT fear this is comparable to the so-called artsy-ness of, say, a Jess Franco film ...it is not). The actors have been attacked by other commentors, but this is one of the things I was more impressed with considering the seemingly meager budget. I thought the male lead did a much better job than, say, the female lead. The two girls who are traveling with the male lead are also surprisingly human and real for a film like this, and there is obviously some chemistry in the cast (but for the female lead: she's a bit too dreamy). The albino and the Richard Wagner music-scene felt out of place but perhaps worked with the disorientation of the film as a whole. In all, comparing this film to its genre and period, it really can't be dismissed. A little indecisive, but not nearly enough to detract from the bounty of great scenes and sensations.


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