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But you should stick to the Final Sacerfice.
What to say of this movie? Well, there's lots of driving. Not Steve McQueen stuff, though. No, more like "Manos, the Hands of Fate." And the walking! More walking than in "The Beast of Yucca Flats." I will admit that my thumb leaned heavily on "FF." Even then, the pace was unendurable.
However, I did not fast forward through some truly inspired dialogue uttered by the satanic leader, who wears some sort of helmet of leather and horns---perhaps a ram's head? No matter. Whatever it is, it successfully hides the identity of the actor(?) as he intones such lines as "For rejecting the serpent, prepare to surrender thy unhallowed flesh to all that is evil!" and "Now, whore, shall ye know the hard-on of sin!" (What happens next gives new meaning to "Lust in the Dust," as well as an ironic twist to the director's name.)
I suppose I should mention that there's a topless waterfall-shower scene, as well as a topless woman in a thong carrying around a boa constrictor . . . if you like that sort of thing.
All of the standard plot elements are accounted for. The southwestern United States became a natural setting for modern satanic horror settings during the 1970s and the Nevada locations chosen are appropriately dismal & forlorn (THE DEVIL'S RAIN). We have the young couple who goes off in search of a good time, take a wrong turn or two, and end up in the clutches of a satanic cult who promptly sacrifice them to the devil (WEREWOLVES ON WHEELS). We have the waifish, slightly neurotic looking sister of the bride who takes it upon herself to scour the desert for the pair in her VW convertible and runs afoul of a colony of desert cultists who don't take kindly to strangers (ENTER THE DEVIL) and end up chasing her all over creation in odd vehicles (RACE WITH THE DEVIL). And we have the strapping local beefcake mechanic hero-type as well as an ambiguous town sheriff, both of whom may or may not be cult members (Brotherhood Of Satan).
The women in the cast aren't opposed to doing nude scenes and the amusingly over-the-top cult leader can recite such lines as "PREPARE TO FEEL THE HARD-ON OF HELL!" and not seem silly. The producers found the budget to afford a former A-list actor for a couple afternoons (Bo Hopkins, outclassing every other actor in the film just getting out of his truck & standing there in his sunglasses with his hands in his pockets) and stage some frenetic car chases with impressive mayhem. They even got a professional stripper to strut around topless with her boa constrictor during the big ceremony scene at the ol' sacrificial pentagram.
But it just doesn't work, proving once again that it's attitude and style that make a form interesting or not regardless of what you pad the script with. This one has neither and is merely an execution of form which gets tedious mighty quick. The movie looks like it was shot on video before being transferred to film, which in itself wouldn't be a problem if the editing of the audio had been done by someone who wasn't snorting Drano. Action and dialog are often out of sync and there are bizarre overdubs which sound like someone with the hiccups. The music is just atrocious, with every scene annoyingly scored with music that either doesn't fit the drama or over- emotes at what should have been lighter moments. And what's up with that title? Even the filmmakers apparently didn't respect what they'd come up with & named the film accordingly. Or was that just Troma being cute after they picked the film up for re-distribution?
Then there is the lead actress who can only be described as a piece of work with a character that is supposed to be a Vegas showgirl who teaches anthropology on the side. Oh! She also drives like Steve McQueen, is naturally adept at fighting off satanists with her bare hands or jury- rigging deadly weapons, and spends the final third of the film being chased across the high chaparral wearing just her panties and a flimsy blouse doing action stunts that would put The Road Warrior to shame. She is an unstoppable juggernaut of destruction, sending bodies flying off cliffs and exploding cars careening into ditches as she skips away with the camera centered on her firm butt cheeks, which were probably the primary attribute that led to her casting.
I love low budget regionally made horror films, and have a particular fondness for American made satanic coven horror potboilers (ever hear of THE WITCHMAKER?). But this movie sucks and not even in a good way, like MANOS: HANDS OF FATE, which may also have been a source of inspiration. It tries to be too serious for a party movie but is too silly & ineptly made to be taken seriously. There are bad laughs galore but the film is otherwise so artless and boring that it's only purpose, aside from displaying six minutes or so of passable female nudity, is to serve as an object lesson to aspiring filmmakers on how not to make a satanic coven thriller.
The main character is played by Sheila Caan and undergoing a road trip across America. En route she accidentally becomes embroiled with a wide-ranging conspiracy involving a group of black magic practitioners with a fine line in human sacrifice. Determined to cover up their crimes, they pursue and plan to kill her, but she proves surprisingly resistant to their plans.
The main template for this film is the excellent '70s thriller RACE WITH THE DEVIL and it does have a '70s vibe to it, favourably recalling the Satanist films of old at times. It's not as good as any of those movies, though, and the cameraman is more interested in shooting his starlet in a voyeuristic way than framing well-shot action. The rest is a blur of desert landscapes, nude showers, suspenseful music, and some effective moments, particularly at the exploding car climax.