Night of the Scarecrow (1995) Poster

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Overlooked Slasher Film, Better Than You Would Expect
gavin694220 March 2011
A group of drunk teenagers accidentally set free the spirit of a warlock, which possesses a scarecrow and terrorizes the small farming community of Hanford.

Mike Mayo says the film "is nicely photographed with a few bloody good touches". I think this is pretty spot on. The movie really does look pretty sharp, particularly for an independent film, and the gore is respectable. Any horror fan should eat it right up. The special effects, for the most part, were above and beyond what you might expect.

Lead actress Elizabeth Barondes was likable. I do not recall ever seeing her in anything else (although she did the remake of "Not of This Earth" the same year), but she deserved to be a bigger star. Apparently too late now, as she has moved on to become an interior designer. The rest of the cast is good, too, and fans of "Dodgeball" or "Office Space" will appreciate Stephen Root in the role of a sheriff.

Of particular interest to me was the "orgy" scene. Filmed in crisp sepia, with plenty of throbbing and corpulent flesh. These are not all beautiful people, but they are animalistic, and I think director Jeff Burr really did himself a favor by including this scene, pushing the boundaries of the film just a bit further.

Burr, in general, deserves respect. Sadly, this film is probably overshadowed by the similarly named "Dark Night of the Scarecrow". But they are both good films and have their own sensibilities. This one is much darker, much more gory. Burr's career is one horror sequel after another, which he does fine at, but his best work shines through in his original pieces like this one and "From a Whisper to a Scream".

As of 2012, Olive Films has finally released this movie on to DVD and Blu-Ray for the first time. I have not seen their version, but I hope it is cleaned up nice and has a special feature or two. The Netflix streaming version is full frame and somewhat fuzzy, suggesting a VHS transfer. I know this film does not have the fan following of other mid-1990s horror films, but perhaps with the Netflix exposure more people will push the right people to give this film a decent release.
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Well, "hay" there
Semih27 August 2003
The special effects and make-up are well done. The plot is standard. Characters are really fun, especially the priest. But the main girl and guy were a bit of a bore. As if cast only for their looks (which is usual, but at least look for a bit more, right?) The Scarecrow is funny and entertaining. He could've easily become one of those horror film characters like Leprechaun, or PumkinHead, or Jack Frost. But not exciting enough to become a Jason, or Freddy. Not much to say except i enjoyed it, rather than getting just plain bored.
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Pure 90's gold
WildestDreams25 September 2012
This film is long lost treasure for horror scavengers. Its often labeled as "supernatural horror", but its true strength is in the slashing scenes. The story of the small town with a curse wouldn't be as engaging without the fantastic slasher edge. The kill scenes look like they are straight out of classic Italian horror: amazing gore effects done without computers. The kills are innovative and realistic looking, including some Saw-worthy torture sequences. The plot is hardly original but it turns out to be just sufficient enough. If you somehow combined Maniac, Children of the Corn, and Pumpkinhead into one movie, it would come out something like Night of the Scarecrow.
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Cheesy entertainment.
Hey_Sweden23 June 2013
Warning: Spoilers
This minor but amusing shocker may get confused with another movie that bears a similar premise, with a similar name: the 1981 TV horror story 'Dark Night of the Scarecrow'. This can boast some atmosphere, and a fair bit of style (courtesy under-rated genre director Jeff Burr ("From a Whisper to a Scream", "Stepfather II")), as well as some entertaining effects work. It's nowhere near as good as its almost-namesake, but at least it doesn't appear to be taking itself too seriously. It also gives some enjoyable showcase roles to a roster of character actors.

Super sexy Claire (Elizabeth Barondes) returns home to the small California town where her dad William (Gary Lockwood) is the mayor. She's just in time, too: soon after she gets there drunken youngster Danny (John Hawkes of 'Deadwood' and "Winter's Bone") desecrates the resting place of a spirit that then proceeds to inhabit the body of a scarecrow; said scarecrow goes about slaughtering the descendants of the man who attempted to put the spirit to rest. Claire teams up with hunky local Dillon (John Mese) to fight the rampaging scarecrow.

The good thing is that "Night of the Scarecrow" isn't boring. Burr keeps it lively and makes sure that it never stops moving. The monster itself, played by Howard Swain, inspires no fright at all, and in fact all scenes with it come off as silly. The special effects, a mixture of mechanical, makeup, and digital work, are generally pretty good, and it is fun to see characters suffer a variety of truly nasty and imaginative fates. These are the kinds of things one simply has to laugh at. Impressive camera-work and good spooky music by Jim Manzie help to keep this watchable.

The actors do their best at selling this standard material. Barondes is very easy on the eyes, which doesn't hurt at all. Bruce Glover ("Walking Tall", "Chinatown") gets an opportunity to tear into the scenery as the local minister - the type of minister who peruses risqué photos when alone in his church, Stephen Root ("Office Space", 'NewsRadio') is fine as the sheriff, Dirk Blocker ("Poltergeist", "Prince of Darkness") appears as a farmer, and Lockwood ("2001: A Space Odyssey", "Firecreek") is amusing as the mayor. Cult actress Martine Beswick plays Glovers' wife, and Duane Whitaker and Joe Unger are Roots' deputies.

A decent if unremarkable viewing for the horror fanatic, "Night of the Scarecrow" does begin and end with a flourish. One could do worse.

Seven out of 10.
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psycho_15326 December 1999
Night of The Scarecrow is a cool horror movie. The scarecrow may look cheesy but he is cool. There are some great killing scenes throughout the movie which make this a worth while watch. Not many people have heard of this, but still give it a go because it is much better then some of the other horror movies out there.
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Enjoyable to watch once
amok198027 October 2001
Decent horror movie about a warlock who terrorizes a town through the body of a scarecrow. It's never boring and the acting and special effects are fairly polished, but the movie suffers from one too many stupid scenes near the end. It also takes a while to explain what exactly is going on, but overall it was enjoyable enough. 4 out of 10.
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One of the best "Scarecrow-related" horror flicks
Northtribe37 February 2016
Warning: Spoilers
When two drunks accidentally awakes an old warlock (who takes the form of a Scarecrow) from the grave the terror begins in town. It's up to a newcomer named Dillon and the daughter of the mayor named Claire to put an end to the warlock once and for all.

I think the characters in this movie are very well written and you care about each and everyone of them (since many of the characters have different personalities it gets much more entertaining to watch this movie).

The special effects are top notch (if Im not mistaken done by the same team who worked on the Elm Street movies), the death scenes are very cool as well even though they aren't that bloody (if you've seen the movie you know what I am talking about).

Already from the opening sequence you get the "Children Of The Corn" vibes and you're drawn into the movie immediately. The only problem with the movie is that it gets a little bit drawn out during half of the running time.

I am ready to give Night Of The Scarecrow a 7/10 stars. I would say it's Jeff Burr's worst movie I've seen so far but by saying that I don't mean it's bad in any way (only that his other movies are so damn good).
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Decent Horror Film
Michael_Elliott21 October 2012
Night of the Scarecrow (1995)

** (out of 4)

A young woman (Elizabeth Barondes) returns home to learn that her family is about to sell their corn fields so that a mall can take its place. The woman is against this idea and especially after an evil warlock takes control of a scarecrow and starts to kill her family. NIGHT OF THE SCARECROW has a pretty good idea for a movie but the screenplay ends up not doing too much with it and in the end we've pretty much just got your standard slasher film with a few memorable death scenes but nothing else. All of the characters are pretty much bland and that includes the leads who simply never bring much energy to their roles. Most of the supporting players are forgettable as well with the exception of Bruce Glover who plays a preacher with a big mouth. The make up effects for the most part are pretty good and we do get a couple fairly interesting death scenes. A few people are pretty much stitched up or turned into scarecrows and these scenes look very good as does another one where a woman gives birth to one. The look of the scarecrow was quite good so it's a shame more wasn't done for him. The entire subplot about the warlock never really added anything to the picture so a straight revenge tale probably would have been better. Still, horror fans into the scarecrow sub-genre will find the monsters good enough to give it a view but there are certainly better films out there.
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Night of the Scarecrow
Scarecrow-8825 November 2007
Warning: Spoilers
Warlock's spirit, trapped within a scarecrow as his burnt bones lie in a tomb buried deep within the ground of his cornfield home, rises when the erected slab imprisoning his casket is disturbed as bolts of lightning emerge awakening his lifeforce..that's the best I can explain it, folks. It seems that the community founded by the Goodmans needed magical assistance if their unfertile land and people starving were ever gonna yield any satisfying comes the Warlock to fulfill their needs, with his magic book of spells as a tool to help the community thrive and land fertile. When the magician began causing such rampant sin and perversion as his granted freedom gave way to lascivious appetites, those religious townpeople, who haven't succumb to the lusts of the flesh decide to hang him on a wooden cross in the middle of a cornfield, later burning his bones & burying them in a tomb. A scarecrow was erected, as was the slab, over the burial plot of the warlock, reminding the generations of Goodmans of the deeds they committed years ago. Anyway, we are now in the present and the recently awakened warlock uses his scarecrow body to kill various Goodmans(..and others in his path)looking to retrieve his magical book of spells and reunite with his bones so that he can return to fleshly form even more powerful than he is as a walking man of string. Claire Goodman(Elizabeth Barondes)is set up as you female heroine and lover Dillon(John Mese), who works for her pops, Mayor William Goodman(Gary Lockwood, FAR removed from 2001, that's for sure)is the male hero who must stop the killer scarecrow before he is able to become all-powerful.

Supernatural slasher milks the scarecrow idea for all it's worth. One scene has the scarecrow planting a seed within the lusty daughter of Priest Uncle Thaddeus(Bruce Glover, appropriately hammy as a corrupt priest who reads lingerie magazines while alone in his church)as it explodes wooden branches from her skin. Another has the scarecrow sowing Uncle Thaddeus' mouth shut. Oh, and you especially like the scene where the scarecrow causes one poor soul to grow straw from his facial orifices, fingers and torso. One scene has the scarecrow blowing straw into a cop's face like little nails that stab the guy in the face. Lots of WTF? death sequences that cause one to giggle..

Some recognizable faces include Dirk Blocker as drunken Uncle George who gets shredded by his tractor, Stephen Root as sheriff Uncle Frank who receives straw "needles" into his face, Martine Beswick as Uncle Thaddeus' wife Barbara(she likes to sew, so this ought to hint at how she'll likely perish), and John Hawkes as Danny, the nuisance who unearthed the warlock to begin with. Director Jeff Burr tries to inject some style into the incredibly asinine premise, but to enjoy this you'll have to accept the film on it's terms. Judging by the film's user rating, few have..
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Typical but not bad...
ChaoS-3728 December 1999
This is a very typical and predictable film.I could guess out,practically each and every scene of it.BUT:I had a good a time with it.The murders are original,gruesome and they are supported by way above the average special effects.This film is to be seen with other horror buffs in order to have a good time.
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Pretty boring Slasher in my opinion, as I was quite disappointed after reading lots of positive stuff about it
callanvass27 July 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This is a pretty boring slasher in my opinion, as I was quite disappointed, after reading lots of positive stuff about it. It has some decent gore scenes, but all the characters were very unlikable, and it moved along at a snail's pace, plus the only time it got interesting was the finale, as that was kind of fun to watch. I bought this at a pawn shop for a $1, as thankfully I didn't spend much money on it, plus The Scarecrow wasn't menacing at all for me, as it was just too weak looking. It may be worth a watch for Horror fanatics(like myself), but even then I would have trouble recommending it, and it's badly made and written as well, plus Gary Lockwood played his role extremely well as the prick of a Mayor!. There is one amusing moment, where a couple of drunk guys try to go mess around and pee on the Scarecrow, and things go dead wrong, and I thought the two leads Elizabeth Barondes(Claire) and John Mese(Dillion) hardly had any chemistry together at all, plus as I said the only worthwhile things are the decent gore scenes and the finale. This is a pretty boring slasher in my opinion, as I was quite disappointed after reading lots of positive stuff about it, and I say avoid it. The Direction is not very good. Jeff Burr does a bad job here with dull camera work, using a potentially good setting, only problem is it moves along too slowly, for me to really give a damn. The Acting isn't much better. Elizabeth Barondes and John Mese are mediocre as the leads, and I didn't really care about there characters, they were just there, plus it didn't help that they didn't have very good chemistry together. Stephen Root is OK as the Sheriff, and did his job adequately. Howard Swain plays the scarecrow well enough too bad it wasn't that menacing. Gary Lockwood plays the prick of a mayor very well I hated him. Rest of the cast are mediocre. Overall I'd say avoid. * out of 5
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* * out of 4.
brandonsites19812 June 2002
A group of drunken teenagers accidently release the spirit of an evil warlock who was imprisoned for hundreds of years who takes the form of a scarecrow. He then goes about the town killing the descendants of those who imprisoned him. Well made horror flick with good special effects, is still just a routine slasher flick with an unoriginal premise.

Rated R; Nudity, Violence, Sexual Situations, and Profanity.
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Wow-a really cool and exciting horror film!
HumanoidOfFlesh7 December 2001
Jeff Burr is definitely one of the most talented horror directors ever.I really enjoyed his earlier horror films like "The Offspring"(1986)and "Leatherface-Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3"(1990)."Night of the Scarecrow" is amazing!-well-acted,suspenseful and exciting.Great special effects,fine acting and plenty of gruesome death scenes.The gore is well-done and suitably splashy and the villain is really cool!Not as good as "Scarecrows"(1988),but definitely worth checking out.I give it 9 out of 10.
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Good enough for me
pearceduncan19 January 2001
I picked up this movie because I'll watch any horror movie. I was surprised to find it was actually pretty good and fairly scary.

The acting ranged from quite good to ham, and although I wished the scarecrow didn't talk it was still a pretty creepy-looking horror villain.

Jeff Burr has proven himself to be an okay genre director. His first movie, The Offspring, was great, and his Stepfather and Pumpkinhead sequels were better than average. Even Leatherface was okay, though his version of the movie was seriously tampered with before release. Night of the Scarecrow doesn't make me long to see his other movies, but I'd pick them up if I tripped over them.
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This needs to be released on DVD bad!!!!!!!!!!
m_jordan_jones3 July 2005
I loved this movie when I was a child. I loved this movie along with The Ice cream man which also needs to be released on DVD. Any Night of the scarecrow is a very fun and enjoyable film. I must say that the coolest thing about this film is the scarecrow and right being that is the gore and cool special effects. It's been so long since I've seen this movie it's been about five years since I've seen this film. Then of course I started buying my horror movies on DVD and unfortunately this little gem was never released. It's missing from my collection along with the Ice cream man. Amazon needs to get some copies of this movie on DVD real bad. Recommended to every horror fan out there.
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a well done horror flick
Dan73 January 1999
Night of the Scarecrow deserves more recognition then it gets.It's got a good storyline and plot to it.Theres no characters that are that famous,but if you watch soap opears you'll recognize Cristi Harris who plays "Stephanie".She's from NBCs Sunset Beach.The killer Scarecrow is corny ,like the snowman in Jack Frost,but it's still a great movie.It also has great death scenes;so if you like horror movies rent Night of the Scarecrow,you won't be disappointed.I give it **** out of ***** stars.
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Childhood nightmare
ninsgoogl11 September 2019
I watched this when i was 4 in VHS and i used my mom as a shield not to see it! 🤣🤣
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Enjoyable cheesy trash
dipdatta15 March 2018
Wasn't expecting anything great, but it was better than I thought. Good rural atmosphere, ok acting & decent script. Some of the murder scenes are pretty innovative & gory. Direction could have been better, sometime scenes end abruptly. Overall, good movie for a rainy evening.
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A great slasher film in the lines of "FRIDAY THE 13TH"
lordzedd-12 April 2003
A entertaining movie with laughs and scares and things in a scarecrow movie that had to be said, like "HOW ABOUT A LITTLE FIRE, SCARECROW". A enjoyable scare fest.





1) INNOVATIVE (Strong and unique plot line that plays on the Scarecrow of the "WIZARD OF OZ" 2) GOOD EFFECTS (Realistic and scary) 3) GREAT MONSTER (Cool monster suit)


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Zod-224 November 2001
This movie has no redeeming qualities (okay a couple of inventive deaths but you'll be bored getting to them). Writing a review of it seems to be a waste of time but I've already wasted 90 minutes of my life watching it so if I can stop other people from doing the same then it was worth it. Think for a minute what makes bad horror movies so bad and you have Night of the Scarecrow. The director needs to go back to film school and study suspense again because this movie doesn't have any. Let me say this one last time: gore does not equal horror!!! The gore in the movie is even quite lame. I find Scarecrows scary so I had high hopes for this film but it's just another example of why horror movies get such a bad rap. The acting is mediocre as are the few shocks that the film has. Do yourself a favour and skip this dud. 1 out of 10.
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tommy67628 June 2001
Nice movie. One of the best that I have seen. Crappy ending though. When the girl was strapped to the post with barbed wire. Why did she not get the seed in her mouth. If you like bloody horror flicks with a little bit of porn this movies for you. I would rate it ***** stars. An excellently done horror movie.
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An Un-interesting Horror Movie
dromasca2 January 2000
Nothing exciting happens in this horror movie. All is extremely standard, all is expected, and you keep having this 'deja-vu' feeling despite the fact that you did not see the film before. No wonder, it looks like some collection of quotes from gothic literature that you have already read and from other many class-B horror movies that you have already seen.

I cannot point to something bad either. Acting is not good or bad, just medium TV-level stuff. Effects are no worse or repulsive than in many other movies that belong to the genre. It is just...boring. Avoid this film, unless all other channels broadcast only cricket or baseball games (no offense intended - replace those by the two sports that you cannot understand)
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So forgettable you must be careful not to rent it twice!
gridoon10 September 2003
Warning: Spoilers
Yet another slasher film, with a scarecrow doing the killing (and targeting young and old alike). Not bad production-wise, with impressive special effects and a couple of good-looking girls, but the cliched dialogue and the routine script (minor SPOILER - they can only defeat the villain by destroying his bones...nowhere have I heard this before...yes, "Nightmare on Elm Street 3") make it completely forgettable horror fare. (**)
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A typical mid 90's throwaway flick
metalrage66613 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
There are two types of scarecrow movies; those that aren't half bad and those that are downright silly and Night of the Scarecrow falls into the latter category.

Movie gets going with the town mayor holding a speech complete with college brass band for the grand opening of a new mall as an indication that the alleged sleepy one horse farming town is actually thriving. While this is going on there's an argument ensuing between 2 guys and it ends up with one happening to fire the other one for his irresponsible ways.

That night the recently fired young man does what every country rube appears to do in these situations; get drunk, break into a shed, steal a tractor and drive dangerously through a corn field. In doing so they happen to drive over a large stone slab implanted in the ground with a cross carved into the surface.

Once that is done, an evil presence emerges and transfers into a nearby scarecrow, refilling it with fresh straw. The scarecrow then sets about killing people.

It's not until you're halfway into the movie that a recently attacked priest tells the story of the town founders 100 years prior and a deal they made with a warlock. The townspeople were starving, the ground was unfit for growing, so they made this pact to enable bumper crops and good times. In return the warlock seduced the towns women forcing them to engage in debauchery; including the daughter of the town leader. Using the warlocks spell book against him, they crucified him, waited for him to die then burnt his body and buried it in the cornfield. The bones had a spell cast and the stone slab placed over as a seal. Normally after you'd hear a story like this you'd be thinking the person is drunk or spaced out and in need of a lot of therapy, but not our 2 hapless heroes, this rambling fantastical story just spurs them into action of tracking down a killer scarecrow.

Now the scarecrow, possessed by the warlock spirit, is going around getting revenge on the descendants of the town founders and hunting down his book so he can be a real live boy again. The race is on to find the old guys bones and dispose of them once and for all.

The story of age old revenge and great great grandsons/daughters having to pay the price for old misdeeds has been done to death in a thousand other horror movies and it's been done much better than in this outing. The idea of killing the very people who have the information on the whereabouts of whatever the demon/ghost/spirit/scarecrow etc happens to be looking for always seemed counterproductive to me but seeing as I'm not any of those things yet, what do I know? I do know that as far as scarecrow movies go, this is far from being great and there's no real reason to go out of your way to hunt this down. It's worth a look on late night TV or a "let's make fun of stupid horror movies" marathon.
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OK/ good horror movie
monkey-man8 November 2005
If u are a fan of crappy b grade horror movies i highly recommend that u watch this movie and i think that u will like this movie.The acting in this movie is really poor and there are some OK gore scenes in this movie and the horror make up and the special affects are actually good.

I was surprised to find that the OK actor Stephen Root from the good movies the lady killers and the very funny movie Dodgeball stars in this movie as the Sheriff.

Over all this movie is OK and this movie is not out on DVD yet and if u find this movie on old crap video u should rent it.Over all my rating for this movie is 5 out of 10.
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