6.8/10
18,507
214 user 76 critic

Salem's Lot (1979)

A novelist and a young horror fan attempt to save a small New England town which has been invaded by vampires.

Director:

Tobe Hooper

Writers:

Stephen King (novel), Paul Monash (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
1,397 ( 107)

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Prime Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 3 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Salem's Lot (2004)
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Writer Ben Mears returns to his childhood home of Jerusalem's Lot and discovers that it is being terrorized by vampires.

Stars: Rob Lowe, Andre Braugher, Donald Sutherland
Comedy | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  

A man and his son vacation to the quiet vampire populated town of Salem's Lot.

Director: Larry Cohen
Stars: Michael Moriarty, Samuel Fuller, Ricky Addison Reed
Crime | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A mysterious new shop opens in a small town which always seems to stock the deepest desires of each shopper, with a price far heavier than expected.

Director: Fraser C. Heston
Stars: Max von Sydow, Ed Harris, Bonnie Bedelia
Silver Bullet (1985)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A werewolf terrorizes a small city where lives the paralytic Marty Coslaw, his uncle, and his sister, the story's narrator.

Director: Daniel Attias
Stars: Gary Busey, Everett McGill, Corey Haim
The Stand (1994)
Adventure | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

After a deadly plague kills most of the world's population, the remaining survivors split into two groups - one led by a benevolent elder and the other by a maleficent being - to face each other in a final battle between good and evil.

Stars: Gary Sinise, Molly Ringwald, Jamey Sheridan
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
David Soul ... Ben Mears
James Mason ... Richard K. Straker
Lance Kerwin ... Mark Petrie
Bonnie Bedelia ... Susan Norton
Lew Ayres ... Jason Burke
Julie Cobb ... Bonnie Sawyer
Elisha Cook Jr. ... Gordon 'Weasel' Phillips (as Elisha Cook)
George Dzundza ... Cully Sawyer
Ed Flanders ... Dr. Bill Norton
Clarissa Kaye-Mason ... Majorie Glick (as Clarissa Kaye)
Geoffrey Lewis ... Mike Ryerson
Barney McFadden Barney McFadden ... Ned Tebbets
Kenneth McMillan ... Constable Parkins Gillespie
Fred Willard ... Larry Crockett
Marie Windsor ... Eva Miller
Edit

Storyline

The successful writer Benjamin "Ben" Mears returns to his hometown Salem's Lot, Maine, expecting to write a new novel about the Marsten House. Ben believes that the manor is an evil house that attracts evil men since the place has many tragic stories and Ben saw a ghostly creature inside the house when he was ten. Ben finds that the Marsten House has just been rented to the antique dealers Richard K. Straker and his partner Kurt Barlow that is permanently traveling. Ben meets the divorced teacher Susan Norton that is living with her parents and they have a love affair. Ben also gets close to her father Dr. Bill Norton and his former school teacher Jason Burke. When people start to die anemic, Ben believes that Straker's partner is a vampire. But how to convince his friends that he is not crazy and that is the truth? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Someone is killing the people of Salem's Lot. The one man they trust...is their only hope for survival. See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 November 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Salem's Lot: The Movie See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(uncut) | (DVD) | (TV) | (movie)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The album cover of Swedish band Ghost's first album Opus Eponymous was inspired by the movie poster. See more »

Goofs

Bonnie tells Larry that Cully will be in Portland before Cully is actually hired to go to Portland. See more »

Quotes

Straker: English
Ben Mears: [holding antique fork in hand] Georgian.
Straker: You have some expertise.
Ben Mears: No, not really. I just happen to know something about silver. My aunt had some Georgian and we had to sell it when she died.
Straker: What an unfortunate way to acquire knowledge.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The text of the opening credits appear and dissolve piece by piece into each other in a jigsaw puzzle fashion. See more »

Alternate Versions

The VHS 1987 version omits the scene where Ben and Mark are in Mexico, and a vampirized Susan is laying down on a cot in a hut. Then, Ben enters the room and impales her in the chest with a wooden stake. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Dick Cavett Show: Episode dated 15 November 1980 (1980) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

Worth a Look
14 July 2000 | by BaronBl00dSee all my reviews

Without a doubt this television movie based on Stephen King's grand horror opus pales in comparison to its literary counterpart. But isn't that usually the case? Although missing some subplots, many characters, and having some major script changes here and there, Tobe Hooper's Salem's Lot is indeed enjoyable. I watched it right after having read the book, and although I spent a lot of time seeing what it did not have...I have to confess that there were many good points. For starters, let me list some of my major complaints. The whole framed narrative story in the movie is ridiculous and very clumsily made. I also have a big problem with the gaping holes in the script with regard to characters popping up here and there with little or no expository introduction. Some characters were used to help move the plot and then discarded. Names were needlessly changed from the novel. That being said there was a great sense of style to the picture which must be credited to Hooper. Overall the acting is quite good. David Soul is very credible in his leading role, as are Lance Kerwin, Bonnie Bedelia, Lew Ayres and Ed Flanders. James Mason makes a stunning villain. Mason uses charm as a weapon and eats up the scenery with subtlety and wit. The vampire is played by horror veteran Reggie Nalder, and although he says not one word...he is very effective. The make-up on him is very reminiscent of Nosferatu. The lead-ins to commercials show the film to be dated by today's standards, but it has enough in it to be an entertaining diversion. However, PLEASE read the book first as it is one of the best of its kind and will make the film all the more enjoyable if for no other reason than seeing its defects.


19 of 29 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 214 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed