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Hope Marie Carlton
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The demonic forces in the haunted Long Island house escape through a mystical lamp which finds its way to a remote California mansion where the evil manipulates a little girl by manifesting itself in the form of her dead father.
Director Nico Mastorakis (Island of Death) returns to the horror genre and the Greek Isles with the suspenseful and intense The Wind. A slight mixture of the slasher, cat & mouse and giallo genres, The Wind looks great, thanks mostly to the imposing Greek locale high on the edge of a cliff. Mastorakis wastes no time jumping right into the action with writer Anderson (Meg Foster) encountering fellow American Phil (Hauser) within minutes of her arrival. When Foster explains she is a mystery writer, Hauser creepily quips, "If you need to know anything about death, I'm right next door." As the nights events progress, the viewer is kept wondering if all that has been happening is just figments of a writer's overactive imagination.
As with most horror films, the success lies squarely on the shoulders of the villain and, thankfully, Mastorakis has Hauser to fill this role. Hauser gives a whacked out performance on the level of his killer pimp turn in the sleaze classic Vice Squad (1982). Whether it is huffing poppers or making threatening phone calls, Wings is in top form in this film. It is truly a shame that his talents aren't fully recognized by the mainstream. Foster provides a worthy adversary to Hauser's unhinged Phil, but there are a few moments that smack of falsity here (namely a few of her one liners). Railsback pops up about two-thirds of the way through as a sailor who helps the police investigate. It is almost a cameo-sized role, but he is good in it and helps spur the ideas that Foster may be making this up.
If the film does have any faults, it is an entirely useless subplot involving a honeymooning American couple. While the point (they almost provide safe haven for Foster) was not lost on this viewer, it seemed a bit contrived and seems like an attempt to pad the film. Regardless, The Wind is still an intense and stylish 90 minutes that is definitely worth a watch.
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