6.8/10
17,552
206 user 72 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
1,222 ( 19)

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

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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
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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:

A masterpiece of horror by the author of "Carrie" and "The Shining" See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 November 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Blood Thirst See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

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

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD) | (uncut) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In an interview with Fangoria magazine Reggie Nalder (Barlow) said he was somewhat disappointed by the film because some additional scenes that included his vampire were cut. See more »

Goofs

When Mark goes to the Marsten house to kill Barlow, he pulls out two lock picks from a small case in order to break in. Then he clearly inserts the handle of one pick into the padlock, rather than the toothed end. See more »

Quotes

Eva Miller: [reading from Ben Mear's typewritten page] The house was a monument to evil sitting there all these years holding the essence of evil in its smoldering bones.
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 »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: Treehouse of Horror XXVII (2016) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Best Vampire Movie in Existence
8 February 2007 | by the_grove_manSee all my reviews

Even with great actors starring in the re-make of Salem's Lot I was very hesitant that it would be able to even touch the original. As I guessed after watching the new re-make (which was OK and filled in some gaps to an already 3 hour original), it still couldn't hold a candle to the original.

The original captures a time when there was no internet, no cell phones. It was an eerie town, a spooky house and a time that if such an evil could infest a town, it probably would spread fast as in this film.

As naive as I am after all these years, I was actually doing searches for Salem's Lot in Maine and was surprised to know that no such place actually exist. It was just a hypothetical place created by Stephen King. However, the location was in Ferndale California where the infamous "Marsten House" still stands on a road where no other houses are and has "No Trespassing" signs everywhere. Doesn't look quite the same from what I'm told and Hollywood dressed up the outside just for the film.

Classic film, one of my brothers still refuses to watch this movie because of the memories of it scaring the hell out of him. I can't even tell you how many times I have seen it. The original actors were absolutely fantastic, David Soul, James Mason and the whole crew.

I still see the best acting in the world when Ben Mears (David Soul) is telling the story in the bar to his old school teacher (that inspired him to be a writer) about entering the house as a kid on a dare. David Soul shines on this role as if he was meant to do this part.

The same can be said about James Mason. He played the part as he was born just to do this movie.

Great movie, a classic, but why in the world does the DVD not have special features like "interviews"? I would love to see pics of the "Marsten House" today..

You take a 5-Star Horror movie and have no special features. That was my only disappointment..


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