Servants of Twilight (1991) Poster

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Not Bad, Even if a Little Bit Predictable
CMRKeyboadist10 October 2006
I remember when this movie came out and the video stores really tried to hype this film. Of course, the film went into obscurity for a while and I hadn't seen it for years. I had actually forgotten the name and that it was based off of a Dean Koontz story. With a little bit of searching I was able to watch this movie again and it was just as OK as the first time I had viewed it.

The story is nothing new, just told from a slightly different angle. A six year old boy by the name of Joey is being terrorized by a cult known as "Twilight". This cult believes the end is coming and believes that Joey is the start of it. They believe he is the anti-Christ. Joey's mother hires a detective named Charlie to help them. Charlie soon realizes that this cult means business as they seem to have cultist everywhere and they just can't escape them, no matter where they run to. This all leads to a climax giving you the question whether Joey is or is not the anti-Christ.

Sure, the storyline is nothing new, but, you can still have fun with it. The acting is really not that bad as we have a decent cast with a few familiar faces which include Belinda Bauer (Robocop 2), Grace Zabriskie, Carel Struycken (The Addams Family) and Bruce Greenwood. Also, the movie is directed by a classic B movie director of the 80's, Jeffrey Obrow, who gave us such fine films as The Kindred and The Power.

Well, I think the movie is worth checking out. You won't waste your time. 7/10
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Really Fun Religious Cult Film
gavin694226 October 2012
Based on the novel by Dean Koontz, this action packed thriller features Bruce Greenwood as a MacGyver-loving private detective hired to protect a little boy from a fanatical religious cult that believe he is the Antichrist foretold in the book of Revelation.

This film has a relatively low rating and I am not sure why. I rather enjoyed it. Sure, there are a few twists that might be predictable, but the overall story is pretty good and the acting is just fine (though I found the boy to be rather weak at times).

Lost classic? No. But really, I thought it was pretty good and the kind of early 1990s cheese that we just can never get enough of.
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Would have been better to stick with the source material
Gidget4 August 2007
Warning: Spoilers
Okay, maybe a six is too high of a rating, but just the chance to see Bruce with a mullet was worth the cost to rent the DVD.

I read the book a long time ago, but remember that Dean didn't write a cheap rip-off of the "Omen", which is what Hollywood decided to do with the original story. Sorry, but it would have been more fun and original if they had stuck with Dean's version.

End-Time stories were more popular prior to Y2K, so most folks won't even pick this one up, but Bruce gives it his best as always, so for his hardcore fans, go ahead and invest in the cost of a rent or eBay buy.
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Needed more money.
Petie3-21 February 2004
Read the book; watched the movie. The changed ending moved the category from psychological drama to horror by changing the character of the boy, but that was probably intentional. Production values were poor, sound and music likewise below par. This could have been another Indiana Jones with some more effort and money. Strongly suggest a remake; the story is good enough. I give it a 5/10 for entertainment value.
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quite quite terrible, and hardly worth an R rating
FieCrier21 January 2006
A woman and her son are attacked by strange people, and they hire a private detective agency to protect them and learn why. Somehow, they can afford having the entire agency on their case, even having as many as three of them staying with them around the clock at times. The detectives aren't particularly good at anything except for being killed, which takes care of the problem of affording them all, I suppose.

Every once in a while, the movie remembers that there was a poorly-defined framing device at the beginning that made everything that followed a reminiscence rather than a current event. So, very occasionally, the lead actor will say something in voice-over ("that's when I first talked to you"), which is silly and totally unnecessary.

The acting in the movie is absolutely dreadful. Some of the actors are capable of acting; they've displayed some skill in other movies, but none of that is evident here. The little boy who is the center of the story is unappealing; as with many kids in 1970s Italian horror movies, to look at him is to want him to die. Thus, one's sympathies are with the cultists who want to kill him, even though they're scarcely appealing at all either.

The video box says the movie is rated R. How that could be possible, I can't imagine. A number of people are killed, but the violence is hardly even the equal of a television cop show, and not that of a horror movie. There is no nudity. There is little, if any bad language.
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The best theatrical film based on Koontz work
movieman_kev22 March 2007
That summary alone isn't really saying much at all, especially for those unlucky bastards who forced themselves to sit through the particularly dreadful "Phantoms", "Hideaway", or ANY of the "Watchers" movies. That being said, this film about a devoutly religious cult headed by a pre-Twin Peaks Grace Zabriskie, who are hellbent (pun intended) on killing a six year old boy (young Andrew dice clay himself, Jerrot Lennon) whom they believe to be the current incarnation of the anti-Christ and willing to kill anyone who get in their way is passable entertainment if you can get past the overtly melodramatic beginning. Belinda Bauer as the mother of Joey is a big letdown, primarily because she's one-dimensional, well more so than the other cardboard cutout characters populating the movie, but also because she didn't follow up her terrific nudity in "Winter Kills" (only bring that up because one scene promises nudity, but then the director choose to pussy out). The ending is groan-inducing and silly. But there are still some unintentional laughs to be had here. Oh and I felt the need to call it the best THEATRICAL film only because I actually found the made for TV flick "Intensity" to be quite good and the best Koontz adaption put out thus far.

My grade: C-
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Excellent "Scare You!" Adaptation of Koontz's Work!!
Elswet2 September 2003
Warning: Spoilers
While the movie does vary from the original literary work by Dean Koontz, it's a great thriller. It demonstrates truly talented acting ability on the part of Bruce Greenwood in the leading role as Charlie Harrison.

The storyline...well, was a bit weak, as they NEVER put into Koontz's work the money they funnel by the fistfuls into King's, but it's still a terrific movie, for a low-budgeted horror flick. It has some truly tense, even edge-of-the-seat, moments and is a good addition to any horror collection.

The plot goes something like this...the kid is the child of Satan, and the Servants of Twilight are there to stop him from reaching maturity. Good luck on that one, if Damien was any indication.

Solid acting and good direction, along with Koontz's writing, put this into my fav's as far as horror movies go.

I give it a solid 8/10 from...

the Fiend :.
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Road trip with the (possible?) Antichrist!
Coventry22 March 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I must admit "Servants of Twilight" is a whole lot better than I originally expected! This faithful adaptation of Dean Koontz' religiously occult novel is fairly engaging, reasonably suspenseful and it benefices from good acting performances by underrated B-actors like Bruce Greenwood, Carel Struycken and Grace Zabriskie. My initial thoughts were rather skeptic, as the directors-duo Jeffrey Obrow and Stephen Carpenter were previously responsible for cheesy horror-turkeys like "The Dorm that Dripped Blood" and "The Kindred" and those flicks aren't exactly famous for their unbearable level of tension. "Servants of Twilight" is a world of difference, as the film closely follows Koontz's original story lines and clearly cuts back on the amount of graphic violence. Greenwood stars as a brilliant private detective who's hired by single mother Christine Scavello because some scary old woman threatens to kill her 6-year-old son Joey. The old lady is the leader of a fanatic religious cult, called the Church of Twilight, and she firmly believes little Joey is the illegitimate son of Satan and that he must be stopped before he gains enough powers to bring the world to an end. The religious freaks mean serious business and undertake several attempts to kill the child. Detective Charlie and his assistants flee towards Santa Barbara for safety, but the cult-members easily follow them everywhere they go. He does everything he can to protect Joey, but is he really as innocent as he looks? After all, what's the real story with his unknown father and why does little Joey draws such sinister pictures? Unquestionably the greatest aspect about the story is how Joey and his mother are continuously portrayed as helpless victims, but there's always some doubt whether or not he isn't really the Antichrist. At the same time Grace and her docile church members are depicted as malevolent & relentless child-murderers, but they're beliefs are so convincing and well stated. Especially the first half of the film is tense and exciting, with a handful of solid action scenes and intelligent dialogs. The entire second half, including the rather silly climax, is much weaker. The plot takes some severely implausible twists and quickly becomes very tedious. Still, "Servants of Twilight" is an overall entertaining little thriller, warmly recommended to both fans of Dean Koontz's writing talents and modest B-movies.
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Derivative, but watchable.
Hey_Sweden24 September 2019
A fair movie that adapts the novel by Dean R. Koontz, "Servants of Twilight" stars Bruce Greenwood ("Star Trek" '09) as Charlie, a private detective. He's hired by desperate hottie mother Christine (Belinda Bauer, "RoboCop 2"). Her young son Joey (Jarrett Lennon, 'Freaks and Geeks') has been targeted by religious fundamentalist Mother Grace (Grace Zabriskie, 'Twin Peaks') and her flock, who genuinely believe Joey to be the Antichrist. They will stop at NOTHING to wipe Joey off the face of the Earth, and turn up every single place that Charlie tries to take him and his mother.

Generally, Koontz hasn't been served all that well on film, although there are exceptions (like "Demon Seed" from 1977). This is an okay horror flick, but never rises above the quality level of an average TV treatment of such material. Overall, it's not that satisfying, despite its best efforts to make the viewer doubt: how could such an adorable little kid (Lennon goes all out trying to be "cutesy") possibly be an embodiment of Evil? (Shades of "The Omen".) Eventually, all is revealed, although some viewers may be glad that the film is finally over rather than happy that their curiosity has been sated. The narrative hook of jumping back and forth in time (with a slightly crazed Charlie relating his story to his good friend, played by top character actor Jack Kehoe ("Melvin and Howard")) is really no big deal.

It's an effective supporting cast of familiar faces that keeps this as watchable as it is. Bauer is simply terrible, with some of the worst line delivery that this viewer has ever heard. Greenwood is fine as the hero. Zabriskie, who seems at least partly inspired by Piper Laurie in "Carrie", is amusing as the zealot who sets the story in motion. Richard Bradford ("The Untouchables"), Dale Dye (the veteran military advisor for the movies), Kelli Maroney ("Night of the Comet"), Al White ("Airplane!"), Carel Struycken (the "Addams Family" movies of the 1990s), Bruce Locke ("RoboCop 3"), and Jillian McWhirter ("Progeny") co-star.

Familiar names behind the scenes include executive producers Andrew Lane & Wayne Crawford (writers of "Valley Girl"), producer Venetia Stevenson (a former actress whose credits include "The City of the Dead"), co-producer William Sachs (who directed "Galaxina" and "The Incredible Melting Man"), and director / co-writer Jeffrey Obrow, who, with his writing partner Stephen Carpenter, made 80s genre favourites such as "The Kindred" and "The Dorm That Dripped Blood".

Genre and Koontz completists may want to give it a look, but it's nothing special overall. It's the cast that raises this viewers' rating by a star.

Six out of 10.
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From solid to very good
eilkon10 February 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I found it solid for the first half, a good performance from most actors. Then gradually getting more intense. Grace a bit over-played in the beginning, actually I found her rather annoying. Carel Struycken maybe too much like Frankenstein - but with a good heart. From the mother coming back f... t.. d... I think it was great, Bilinda Bauer OK at least. The boy - as usual I find children to be very good actors. The end a bit sad, maybe predictable, but otherwise perfect. Of course you can ask which side won, the good or the bad, I will not be the judge. Turning it upside - down is OK With me. The cult just as bad as the real life cults. Not read the book, but the film can stand for itself. Will surely watch it again.
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Great, even if a little overdone.
dannyag23 February 2003
One of the reviews here stated that this movie wasn't scary. I have to disagree with that. Anytime there's a little boy/girl involved with the dark lord, unless the acting is SO poor, or the plot so riddled with holes, it's usually scary. HOW scary?.....well that's a matter of opinion. I, however, found this flick to be "7" scary on a scale from 1 to 10. I don't think it was predictable at all...... and without giving away any secrets I would recommend this to ANY Sci-Fi/Horror fan. It was well done, well acted and I thought the script was well written for what it is! Check it out!
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Please be my Daddy!
sol12186 September 2005
**SPOILERS** One of the many Anti-Christ-like movies released throughout the 1970's 80's and like itself, "The Servant of Twilght", the 1990's. That by that time just about exhausted it's subject matter:Satan's return in the flesh. Having this crazed religious cult

"The Church of Twilight"led by the insane Saint Grace, Grace Zabriskie,together with her fanatical followers try to track down the boy Anti-Christ Joey Scaveilo, Jarrett Lennon, and kill him before he grows up and becomes too strong to be stopped, as Satan himself. The film has some dozen people including Grace end up dead before it's finally over. Just guess who ends up surviving this whole bloody mess to be able to do his dirty work in the future?

Poor private investigator Charlie Harrison, Bruce Greenwood, is seen at the start of the movie being wheeled into the local psychiatric ward suffering from a complete breakdown, psychically and mentally. All this from what he's gone through earlier in the movie that we see in a series of flashbacks.

Having been hired by Cristina Scaveilo, Belinda Bauer, to protect her and her young son Joey from "The Church of Twilight" cult who targeted him for death Charlie at first took what Belinda told him at face value. Not at all realizing, until it was too late, that these religious nuts might have something to what they believe in. Always a step ahead of Charlie and the Scavilo's it turns out that the cult has a person very close to Charlie who tips them off to where he's taking Joey and his mom Christina. That leads to the three getting trapped in this safe house, out in the sticks, where Saint Grace and her followers make their move to finally put an end of Satan's big comeback in the world of the living; and make it possible for the for events in the the book of Revelations to become a reality.

With everyone of Saint Grace's people wiped out in the preceding shootout it was up to the only survivor of the cult the giant Kyle, Carel Struycicen, to do what he has to do in killing Joey and prevent him from growing up and destroying the world. Kyle just can't bring himself to do it so it falls on a frustrated and betrayed Grace's to do the nasty and dirty job b herself. It's then when she's suddenly attacked by a squadron of vampire bats who end up killing her by sucking her dry.

Charlie begins to unravel when Christina ,who Grace killed earlier in the movie, comes back to life after little Joey touches her and finally sees the light but by now he's already lost his mind. Everything Charlie now says about Joey's secret identity, the Anti-Christ, is relegated to mindless babble to anyone who bothers to even listen to him. Passablse thriller but nothing more with an ending that's just more confusing then what you saw up until then. Leaving you wondering what exactly was the connection between Joey and his mother Christine, did she know that he was the Anti-Chist? Your also left wondering just why Joey was so interested in having Charlie as his daddy? Was Charlie really his natural father?
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Not scary, but entertaining
staisil217 April 2003
This movie was not scary, but it was good. It was sometimes suspenseful, and it surprised you along the way. It looked like a cheap knock off of 'The Omen," but it was different. The ending was surprising, and this movie gets a 7 out of 10.
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worst movie I have ever seen...
SJinSeaTac18 March 2005
don't even bother with this snot even worthy of a video release movie. Bruce Greenwood, you re such a good actor, and I suppose you had to start somewhere, but why THIS piece of trash. It is so BAD, that the over-the-top dialog and performances are not even funny.

Avoid this film like the plague, and DO NOT be fooled by Trimark's cool DVD box cover at your local Hollywood or Blockbuster!

As for the description on the back of the box, it is not what it seems. This grace woman just suddenly "bumps into" the boy and his mother in a parking that god's destiny?

This movie is such a joke. don't even bother trying to understand what the screenwriter's were thinking when they wrote this piece of trash.
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Servants of Twilight is the bomb, yo! (well, it's not bad)
BA_Harrison24 May 2017
Given horror author Dean R. Koontz's incredible success, I'm baffled at just how few of his many novels have been adapted for the screen (especially considering the popularity of the horror/thriller genre as a whole). Servants of Twilight proves that, in the right hands, Koontz's work can be almost as compelling to watch as it is to read.

Bruce Greenwood stars as Charlie Harrison, a tough private eye hired by single mother Christine Scavello (Belinda Bauer) to protect her son Joey (Jarrett Lennon) from a fanatical religious cult who believe the boy to be the AntiChrist. A game of cat and mouse ensues, with Charlie, Christine and Joey unable to trust anyone, danger lurking around every corner.

Even though his budgetary limitations are obvious in the picture and sound quality, and the lack of any real stars, director Jeffery Obrow manages to wring quite a lot of tension out of Koontz's economical tale. The film might be a simple series of fight or flight encounters with the cultists, saddled with a predictable ending, but there is no shortage of excitement to be had along the way. A more appealing child actor (Lennon bears a striking resemblance to Dobby the house elf) and some gore (decapitated dog?) would have been welcome, but even as it stands Servants of Twilight is a more than serviceable chiller.
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Scary, but okay-scary!
Krinda25 December 1998
I thought the kid, Joey Scavello (Jarrett Lennon) was adorable! He was so natural, and it was hard to believe what would happen at the end; surely he's not like that in REAL life, right? Anyway, he helped make this believable, I think. I thought the mother was really dry, and not believable as his mother, or ANYONE'S mother. I also think the movie didn't hold up to Koontz's book whatsoever, which is too bad -- it felt very much as if a whole bunch of editing had been done much, much later and that it ended up HAVING to be a flashback movie instead of the way it was probably originally done.
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