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Attack of the Special Effects!
wkduffy1 March 2006
I am a sincere horror movie fan. As such, I am extremely forgiving—indeed, my friends would argue I have no standards at all. To shake up this dynamic even more, there is a class of film that forgiving fans feel compelled to huddle around and protect because these "works of art" are so obviously vulnerable to attack—mostly because they suck in every way imaginable. Remember Robert Culp crazily running around naked in "A Name for Evil?" (Whoever says anything nice about "A Name for Evil?") Remember a coiffed Richard Moll attempting to navigate the discontinuity in "The Nightmare Never Ends?" (What dozen or so people ever bothered watching "The Nightmare Never Ends" in its entirety?) How about Trish Van Devere flitting about the badly lit sets in her housecoat in "The Hearse?" Technically, these films are inconceivably bad, plain and simple. They never really gel; they don't scare; the characters are flat or unconvincing; the lighting is poor; the sound is cacophonous; the plot convoluted. These movies always seem to be a collection of medium-range shots pasted haphazardly together—not an interesting angle or lighting effect to be found. These films don't even fall into the clichéd "so bad they're good" class of films.

In my mind, films like "A Name for Evil" are "TV quality" films (if we are talking TV quality of about 30 years ago, of course). In fact, the most effective way to turn me off from wanting to watch any film is by telling me it is of average TV quality. To me, that means artless, white-washed, vanilla, predictable, flat. I'm immediately disinterested.

Having said that, films like "The Hearse" and "Nightmare Never Ends" and even "A Name for Evil" almost supernaturally, are imbued with something greater than the sum of their parts. In the minds and hearts of truly forgiving horror movie fans, these films hold a place that they do not deserve; there's something about the "idea" of the movie—not borne out by the reality of the film itself—that exerts an inexplicable power. I guess what I'm saying is that these movies are never as good as the ideas behind them; but for some reason I, as viewer, seem to remember and connect with the idea, rather than the movie. Call me insane, but it is almost as if the movie doesn't matter. For example, when I spy the DVD cover of "Horror Planet" on my shelf, I think of the "idea" of the film fondly—even though I never really want to watch the film a second time because it is so poorly executed. I imbue it with a power it doesn't really have. And I'm fascinated by that interaction. Maybe I'm just nuts.

Now, having said all that, I'm not sure "Beyond Evil" quite makes it into that mysterious class of films. The ideas in this film (not the film itself) try damn hard to work their way into my subconscious…but ultimately the flick fails in that regard. The acting is adequate, even adequately inspired at times. The music by Donaggio is adequate. The plot is okay. But when it comes right down to it, I think there are three specific things that ultimately do this movie in—things that are so completely distracting, I can't even love the idea of this film, let alone the film itself:

1. Could You Repeat That Please: The film takes place in a large mansion, mostly. Here we get the "one Radio Shack mic placed in the middle of the cacophonous room" effect—often with more than one person speaking at the same time. Remember the award-winning audio in films like "The Ghosts of Hanley House?" Terribly distracting. As someone else also said, this movie is evidence why filming in front of an airport is not such a good idea—did you catch that dialog? I didn't. Planes are loud and noisy. Someone tell the director.

2. The Editor Fell Asleep at the Cutting Wheel: Something bizarre happens in the last 15 minutes of this movie (referring to the UK PAL R2 DVD). Suddenly parts of the film disappear—there are plot elements you KNOW occurred, you'd bet your paycheck on it, but they've been sliced to the point where the narrative starts to literally come apart at the seams. Once again, I am a forgiving fan here and can even appreciate discontinuity on some artful level. But this isn't epileptic enough to be interesting or keep me off balance. No, it's just that somebody let the scissors slip a few times, and the film falls apart—literally—in the last few frames. Why oh why?

3. Attack of the Special Effects: The effects in this movie, as other reviewers have adequately illustrated, are atrocious. Remember, I am a forgiving fan—probably much more forgiving than you are. But when you see something so low--that you start to think you might actually have standards of some kind—you know you've hit rock bottom. The effects are really at rock bottom. They are so bad, they chew into the narrative. While watching, I was having a conversation with myself (as the movie progressed) about how the ghost of the former owner of the mansion could have been presented so much better, and so much more simply. Glowing green laser beam eyeballs. Awful, awful, awful. The silly superimposition of the ghost character that suddenly blinks into life on a dark space in the picture's frame. Awful, awful, awful. I think of all the scary movies I've seen where ghosts were presented simply and interestingly and frighteningly without a special effect to be found. Why would adequate-director-Herb-Freed make such a bad, bad decision?

So there you have it. An unforgivable "TV Quality" movie where ultimately the ideas don't even float to the top. Too bad, too bad.
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Beyond Linda!
TonyDood22 September 2005
I first noticed the lovely "Linda Day George" in "Pieces" where she made bad-horror-movie history by screaming "BASTARRRRDS!" three times in a row to riotous effect. She's not as overtly hilarious here (in fact, it appears she was probably a decent actor, generally) but she's really the only reason I could recommend this relatively average flick. She rolls her eyes, runs around with an over-sized finger (don't ask!) and, while possessed, does some seductive things. I knew it would be a fun movie during a scene early on where she walked around her apartment, anxious about the rain outside, then finally threw her things down and yelled, "DAMN!" with what seemed like every emotive power she ever learned in acting school! Strassberg would've been proud. And I can't look away! Linda had some great moments later too, but that single moment was the most (unintentionally) funny.

Another nice surprise, during the opening credits I heard this overwrought, sweeping score with lots of strings and lots of starts-and-stops...I thought, "My this sounds like Pino Donaggio!" And it turned out it was! Another satisfying score from the almost-always dependable Pino, who appears to be the busiest composer in history. Most of his usual touches are here--great chase music, an achingly beautiful "love theme" and a finale that leaves you feeling somehow sentimental even if the movie was total crap.

Which this one pretty much was. John Saxon is great--especially kicking ass and going, "Stay!" to a would be attacker. He's cool and this film didn't hurt him a bit, thankfully. Otherwise there's not much here in this "would-be" giallo: **a crossed-eyed ghost woman with green laser eyes **no sex and minimal gore, although what there is was pleasantly repulsive **terrible effects **slow pace **sloppy editing **plots stolen from "Amityville," "Exorcist," "Beyond The Door" and especially "Suspiria," and **no surprises, really. It DOES have some hilariously bad deaths though, if you're in the mood, which I usually am, and if you can stay awake. The death of a guy in a "posessed" car that's barely moving is not to be missed--especially when he spontaneously explodes into fire, but continues to scream! I don't know who Herb Freed was or why he was making cheap horror movies, but this is not the WORST movie ever. Keep the fast-forward button handy and this is an enjoyable piece of mind-sludge.
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A very decent horror movie
Ton_O15 September 2004
A very satisfying film, with incredibly good acting, especially for such a low budget movie. John Saxon.(From Dusk Till Dawn, Dario Agento's Tenebrea, to name but a few of his many starring roles) and his wife Linda Day George (who starred in such different works as Pieces and the TV series Roots) go to an island for a building project the husband works on, and while there, are offered a wonderful mansion to live in. As it is on islands in horrormovies, the locals have some superstitions about the house, which are not far from the horrible truth. I won't tell too much, because it would spoil the fun of watching this well crafted film.

OK, the special effects are very seventies, and in those days probably could even have been slightly better - but if the filmmakers decided to spend whatever budget they had rather on great actors than on the effects, I would say this was money well spent. This is a good story that borrows a little here and there, but never crosses any line of plagiarism as so many recent Hollywood productions get away with shamelessly. Adding a lot of itself and a rather disturbing atmosphere (which is enhanced by Saxon's brilliant acting) this results in a very enjoyable and sometimes frightening horror movie.
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It's not original or creative, or even scary, but it's pretty funny AND fun to watch, and also, the music is pretty catchy
rb958914 October 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Beyond Evil was directed by Herb Freed (you might know him from Graduation Day) and stars John Saxon as Larry Andrews, a construction worker or contractor of some sort who moves with his wife, Barbara (Lynda Day George) into a new home in the Caribbean. His friend Del Giorgio (Michael Dante) and Del's friend Dr. Frank Albanos (Mario Milano) - who adds barely anything to the plot except being a tag-along to Del, and a suspicious yet unfulfilled character - obtained the place for them after the owners died, and it's a damn castle. Of course, Barbara and Larry are taken with it, even after the tale of the owners' deaths. It seems that the lady who had owned the house was in a loveless marriage with her husband, who would fool around on her, and she practiced black magic as revenge on him. He ended up killing her, but not before she killed him too, and now the house is supposed to be haunted by the vengeful black witch. The hoodoo doesn't get to the newlyweds, until Barbara is possessed by the evil spirit, and then it's up to Larry to save his wife before it's too late.

If it sounds like a familiar plot line, it is. It plays out exactly like anything from The Exorcist to The Amityville Horror. While not original, it is pretty entertaining. I love John Saxon - he's a great actor and seems like a pretty cool guy. But one thing that gets me in this movie are all the flaws.

For example, at one point it seems like Del Giorgio is out to get Larry and Barbara. For what reason? Well, it would make sense to assume that Del is trying to break it off between Larry and Barbara, since it is mentioned that Del had had a fling with Barb in the past. It almost plays out - Barb is possessed, and starts making out with Del, and the audience thinks that maybe, just maybe, this vengeful plot arc will play out, only to find that Barb kills Del before anything can actually happen and makes everything suspicious that Del was planning a moot point. I just wonder if it was actually supposed to seem like Del was in cahoots with Dr. Frank Albanos, or if it was just something that I misinterpreted. Either way, I also found it weird that Frank was both a doctor and always at the construction site.

Which leads me to another question - what's up with the construction site? It's never really explained what's going on, and while it's not important, there are scenes at the work site where I was left wondering what exactly they were doing.

The movie's not boring - the hauntings are semi-dramatic, and it was fun to see Saxon almost get killed by a falling wooden idol, but much of the movie is really loosely pulled together into a coherent plot. There's also a witch doctor that Saxon goes to to help exorcise the demon in Barbara, but to no avail - nothing happens. There's also only about 5 deaths in the whole movie, but they're spaced out enough so that one doesn't get bored too quickly.

Bluntly, though, the movie has too many wordy moments and not enough action. And whoever's idea it was that possessed bodies are cloaked in, and shoot, green mist was a little whacked. Barbara seriously looks spooky - that is, until she becomes Superman with green lasers firing from her eyes - then it just throws the suspense all down the drain.

I will use a Playwriting vocab term here - deus ex machina. In Beyond Evil, Freed uses this to max effect. A little backstory to let you in on what happened here - Larry gets fed up with the wooden idol doll that he has upstairs and throws it in the river outside. Yet at the end of the movie, what magically apparates in the fireplace? That same idol doll. No one ever picked it up, or made mention of it, in the last 20 or so minutes of the film when it was thrown away, but it magically appears in the fireplace, and Larry burns it to exorcise the demon spirit from Barb. So basically, what happened was the writers got too confused as to how to end the film and decided that the easiest way was to miraculously place the idol in the fire to be consumed by flames, freeing Barb. It's a suspension of disbelief that just doesn't seem to work well, and it's pretty confusing, actually.

But hey - you could do worse for an hour and a half movie. It's not original or creative, or even scary, but it's pretty funny AND fun to watch, and also, the music is pretty catchy. So if you're in the mood for a possession, or John Saxon (that dreamy hunk, and here, he's pretty young) then rent this movie. It's not evil, but it'll have to do.
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Fascinating low-budget junk!
Coventry11 August 2005
John Saxon ("Black Christmas"!) and Lynda Day George ("Pieces"!) form a fabulous horror couple in this cheap and bizarre, but nevertheless intriguing little 80's film, set on a remote Southern island. The story isn't exactly original, blending cliché horror premises like haunted houses, soul-possessions, spiritual tribes and witchcraft, and yet, there isn't a dull moment to detect anywhere. This is largely thanks to the enthusiast acting performances and the surefooted direction of Herbert Freed. "Beyond Evil" is quite an oddity, because the special effects are very amateurish (sometimes even downright laughable) and still the wholesome remains a spooky and unsettling horror tale. Upon their arrival at the island, newlyweds Larry and Barbara are offered a beautiful and gigantic mansion to live in. Through a very atmospheric flashback-story, however, we learn that this same mansion was once homed by the sinister Alma Martin and her unfaithful husband. He poisoned Alma but her restless spirit still dwells around the mansion. Now, 100 years later, Alma Martin sees her change to reincarnate through Barbara and she won't hesitate to destroy everyone that tries to prevent this from happening. As previously stated, the special and visual effects are terrible… They often exclusively exist of funky green laser beams projected from the eyes of Alma Martin and they're not very convincing. Still, the film does offer some genuine shocks whenever budget isn't required, like Alma's ghostly appearances out of nowhere or the creepy shots inside the crypt. Especially since it's such an inexplicably fascinating movie, "Beyond Evil" should be categorized under 'interesting failures' and not just under 'worthless horror junk'! If you can pick up the DVD for a reasonably cheap price, it's definitely worth buying.
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Nifty low-budget chiller with some atrocious special effects
nuelow14 June 2006
This is a fabulous low-budget chiller that features a great collection of energetic and enthusiastic actors--there are literally no bad performances anywhere--and showcases steady, focused direction of the kind that movies with ten times the budget are often lacking.

On the downside, the film features some rather laughable visible effects. In most cases, the filmmakers seemed to be aware that their budget limited what they could do--and they got by quite effectively with creative lighting, fog machines, jump-cuts, and other inexpensive movie gimmicks--but then they also decided to do some animation effects. These were passable when all they were used for were to illustrate whenever the ghost was up to something evil, but when they started showing laser beams shooting from the eyes of the possessed Barbara, the animation went from cheap-looking to ridiculous.

Despite the occasional special effects missteps, "Beyond Evil" is mostly a competently executed haunted house/possession flick. It sags a bit in the middle--where the voodoo queen flexes her supernatural muscle and things get a bit repetitive as Larry tries to convince the increasingly strange Barbara to seek medical help--but for the most part it remains an engrossing little movie that's worth a look.
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Beyond Evil is bad but funny.
Whovian11 January 1999
This is really quite an awful movie, but there are a number of moments when it is so awful you can't help but laugh. See the badly animated green laser eyes! See the car which explodes before hitting the ground! Hear the man explain to his wife that the accident at work occurred when a crane "came out of nowhere!" I definitely recommend this film if you like bad movies.
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Beyond Evil
Scarecrow-881 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Newly married couple, Larry and Barbara Andrews(John Saxon & Lynda Day George)move to a reputedly haunted mansion, Casa Fortuna, which yields a vengeful witch's spirit with strong powers. Poor Barbara's body and soul are slowly taken over by the spirit, Alma Martin(Janice Lynde, under various wigs), and those Larry works with during the construction of a major hotel, such as pal Del Giorgio(Michael Dante)and Dr. Frank Albanos(Mario Milano)both men with a lot riding on the job and it's business potential, are in danger of her wrath. A worried Larry, whose own life is threatened when a crane, operated by Alma's spirit, carrying heavy material used for construction which nearly falls on top of him(..killing a co-worker by him), will seek help from a faith healer Doctor Solomon(David Opatoshu). But, as Alma slowly gains control of Barbara her powers emerge, such as green laser blasts from the eyes, superhuman abilities to lift and throw men in the air, pulling a car apart before exploding it down a cliff, etc. Larry and Solomon will have to work together to somehow stop Alma from totally taking control.

From the director of "Graduation Day"(..another Troma release), Herb Freed tries his hand in the demonic thriller genre. I think the cast gives it their best shot, but the budget is just too small and so many scenes show signs of post production tinkering where one scene doesn't transition smoothly to the next and the special effects(..particularly when Alma uses her powers, with green tint often appearing like a halo around Day George's head before she blasts somebody)are rather cheap. I think one often needs an appropriate budget when approaching a film about demonic possession and a lot of the special effects undermine a decent effort from the director. I must also admit that there are some lighting issues, with a lot of scenes so dark you could barely see the actors, especially at night. I'm certainly not against low-budget film-making, and I think setting your film on an island inside a mansion which carries a certain flavor of it's surroundings certainly helps. I think the leads are fine. Saxon is the concerned husband, often playing him as conflicted and confused. Day George shows the battle of personalities raging inside, the sweet innocent Babs, and the evil Alma starting to take over. Lynde as Alma is actually pretty creepy with how she widens her mad eyes, opening her fingers exposing those long nails as she shoots green light. I think if Herb just had some more money, and decidedly remained away from using special effects concerning colors, he'd had a better film. But, it's assured that people will watch this with uncontrollable laughter, certainly at the special effects and perhaps hold a feeling of embarrassment for Saxon and Day George who deserve a better film. There are some make-up effects concerning Solomon's faith healing rituals where he slices open the stomach of "patients" removing the problems plaguing them( case goes wrong, to a child no less, when Alma interferes)that work well.
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Beyond boring.
The Bronson Fan28 August 2004
Totally boring movie about a man and his wife who move into a house or villa and soon his wife becomes possessed with the spirit of an evil one who once dwelled within its walls. As the possession takes hold more people and friends of theirs begin to die, many in rather unintentional humorous ways. So her husband (John Saxon) wants her back and consults a local "spiritual healer" to help defeat the evil one. After confrontation he gets his wife back. This movie is a waste of time unless your looking for some laughs. Truly bad and stupid with special effects that are poor even for the time. Some notable funny moments the eye lasers, mans car falls apart then explodes (laughable), man gets crushed with pile of junk, and a rather fake looking devil doll that tries to possess his wife. Saxon is cool and works with what he has, but that's not much leading to a typical turkey that belongs where i saw it... in the middle of the night. 2 out of 10 stars avoid this bore.
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Subtle, yet good
GOWBTW9 December 2018
For a horror movie, "Beyond Evil" isn't half bad. John Saxon and Lynda Day George play a couple who go on an island country, trying to get a home there. The apartment that they try to live in isn't ready for settling in. So they get to live in a castle where there is a questionable past to it. About a 100 years ago, a couple lived in the castle. Business was a factor for them. No true love there. Both are unhappy with each other. Trying to get rid of each other. Only the wife got involved with the occult. Her spirit haunts the castle, and the wife of the architect became the victim. Forget the regular mood swings, evil spirits make anything a living nightmare. Since his love for his wife was strong, the spirit didn't stand a chance. Despite being low budget, it was a good movie. It has a subtle structure it wasn't very hyped up like some that I seen. Enjoyed it very well. 2 out of 5 stars
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A little flawed, but acceptable
kannibalcorpsegrinder8 January 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Heading off for a honeymoon, a couple arrives at a small island getaway where they move into a local house only to soon experience strange accidents and as they come to realize they've been touched by the spirit of those who lived there before tries to stop her before she's completely possessed.

While it wasn't that great, it did have a few really good parts. One of the main aspects of this one is the early setup featured here which manages to start this one off on a solid note. The early scenes detailing the history of the island and the different local legends involved with the people who live there manage to give this a solid backstory here with the use of satanic rituals and black magic that gets brought up in here. That allows this one to get a solid base throughout here with the possession scenes taking place here with the ritualized chanting and ceremonial setups that it comes off as a great starting piece to the few accidents that come about from the possession. That also leads into the fun here with the fact that there's a lot of cheesy action to this, especially in the later half which has some really great amounts to it that really push this along. There are some really nice scenes here, including the confrontation with the possessed woman in the bedroom which is a really nice, hard-hitting fight, and along with the final fight that throws everything around the room in another rather decent encounter that really works. All of the cheese that's present in the scene is what's really helpful, from the way the change happens and makes her look with the distorted mouth, darkened eyes, weird facial features and extended claws, and to have the cheesy effect of green lasers shot out of her eyes at victims, blowing up the scenery or forcing them to duck behind furniture makes them look really great and cheesy. Alongside the look of the house, these are what help the film out as there's not a whole lot to this one. The biggest one to this is the fact that the film is way too short on action and accounts for most of the film's problems. There are only a few action scenes that add any sort of excitement into the film, and the rest of the time is taken up with the dull and sleep-inducing banter including all the different conversations that are done with the different methods of treating the situation. That this one has numerous several-minute long conversations about it is a little much, and tends to take up a lot of time in the film. This is also done with the backstory, which has too many scenes of the ones who know about it telling the ones who don't everything they know, and the repetition hurts the film a lot. That also means that the few action scenes are really short, which is mostly seen in the later half since it picks up the pace somewhat but only just barely has any momentum from them since the film slows it down enough to have the other parts of the film stand out even more. There's also a large amount of cheese to this, from the way the possession takes over to the action and the special effects quality, which may not sit well with all out there. These here are the main flaws to this.

Rated R: Violence and Graphic Language.
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John Saxon And Lynda Day George Save The Film From Being A Complete Disaster
Desertman8425 August 2015
Warning: Spoilers
John Saxon and Lynda Day George team up in this horror flick made back in the 1980's.It is about an architect and his newly wed wife,Larry and Barbara who moves into a mansion that is apparently haunted.It is housed by a ghost named Alma Martin,who happens to be man-hating voodoo queen and who was apparently murdered in it.The couple unexpectedly find themselves needing to battle the ghost for many lives are at stake from the people of the island that they have gone to and their lives as well.

It was obvious that the special effects were dated even at the time it was released due to being a lowly budgeted thriller in 1980.In fact,it became an unexpectedly a comedic film due to the effects used. But the cast and crew made the most of it and tried its best to be entertaining and horrifying as possible despite the limited success that they had in it.Although the film was obviously far from being it good,it just managed to be far from being disastrous due to its lovely couple - Saxon and Day George - who exuded lots of chemistry.
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Not what you would expect considering this is a Troma film.
Aaron137529 June 2012
This film does not seem like the Troma I am used to. Usually Troma films are filled with gore, nudity and all sorts of sleaze, while this one tries to have a serious story going and it also differs from most of their offerings in that it is boring. This could have been the sequel to the film "A Name for Evil" with Robert Culp as it plays a bit like that film only a bit more flashier. Still, it drags on and on with one inconsequential plot point after the other with the occasional tepid kill thrown in to remind you that you are still watching a horror film no matter how little horror is on the screen at any given time. This one also has a lot of the same plot elements of the film "Mausoleum" within it, only that film came after this one and it seemed to know it was a horror film as it had a whole heck of a lot going for it compared to this one which has one thing and one thing only going for it and that is John Saxon as the lead character.

The story has an architect and his wife relocating to an island where the architect is helping to oversee the construction of some buildings. There is a buddy who is supposed to be getting an apartment ready for them, but he is instead getting them an awesome new house at an unbelievably low price. Turns out the place has a history and there is a lot of history with the characters, to much if you ask me. There is to many shady deals going down here which would be cool if it were the least bit relevant to the plot! Well the place is haunted by a woman who died in the place and practiced dark magic and so she shall try and take over the architect's wife in very slow and unspectacular fashion. There is a faith healer that warns our hero, but of course he does not believe in all that magic stuff. The filmmakers apparently did, painting faith healers as real, obviously this is before their little tricks were revealed to be nothing more than chicken livers.

So you have a possession plot going on, so you probably want to know is it interesting? Well no, I said the film was boring and I meant it. The problem is they went to serious and the threw up a very weak horror film. The plot could be a possession plot on a soap opera it is so bland. It also feels very much like a television film, especially when the scene cuts out on a high musical note that sounded as if the film were about to go to commercial. So there is very little in the way of gore, nudity or general mayhem and the film is mainly people milling around and talking about stuff that is not relevant to the possession plot. This is a film that just screams gore and nudity and delivers not much in the way of either. So you hope the story is good, but it is just to crammed with stuff that just is not important.

There is a good point to the film and that is John Saxon as the architect. If not for him I would have given the film a one, but he is an actor who stars in these b movie nightmares and can make them a bit more tolerable. I love the pointless scene in the hospital about the missing records where he punches a dude in the stomach. He does a good job and the lady portraying his wife has a nice chest, it is a shame they never showed it to us in all its glory as it would have been worth at least another point from me.

So this film in the end is boring. Very much like another Troma film, "Zombie Island Massacre" in that it is set on an island and there is nothing that you expect within. I was expecting more, some good gore, perhaps lots of boobies. All I got were plot points that at times seemed to come from another movie entirely and a very slow moving possession film. You get deaths that are also suited for other films as they usually just had people falling or other things that just did not seem part of a horror film. Just disappointed all around with this one, I was not expecting this one to be really good, but I also was not expecting it to be boring either. Heck, it was beyond boring.
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So-so possession flick
Woodyanders19 September 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Architect Larry Andrews (the always reliable John Saxon) and his new bride Barbara (nicely played by the lovely Lynda Day George) move into a swanky palatial colonial mansion that's haunted by the lethal spirit of evil and vengeful witch Alma Martin (an effectively wicked portrayal by the ravishing Janice Lynde), who not surprisingly possesses Barbara's body so she can reenter our dimension. Director/co-writer Herb Freed manages to create a suitably spooky atmosphere and stages the sporadic supernatural murder set pieces with a reasonable amount of flair (the occasional use of slow motion is especially nifty), but alas the meandering script takes too long to get right down to business, the moderate sprinkling of gore is regrettably tepid stuff, the editing tends to be slapdash, the narrative is sometimes very muddled and incoherent, and , worst of all, the hopelessly cheap and cheesy (far from) special effects are often downright laughable in their jaw-dropping Day-Glo dimestore tackiness. The cast do their best with the blah material: Saxon and George make for appealing and attractive leads, with sturdy support from Michael Dante as smooth heel Del Giorgio, Mario Milano as suave physician Dr. Frank Albanos, and David Opatoshu as helpful faith healer Dr. Solomon. Ken Plotin's pretty cinematography offers several sumptuous shots of the gorgeously scenic sylvan locations. Pino Donaggio provides a supremely eerie and elegant score which gives this rather shoddy picture some much-needed class. A merely passable timewaster.
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