The days are getting darker, the weather colder, pumpkinheads carved. Perfect timing for some Halloween-themed horror movies with blood, guts and bad acting. Three wishes fulfilled by the original Night of the Demons trilogy.
If you’re curious about the remake, check out this article (before Future Sack time).
Night of the Demons
(USA 1988, director: Kevin Tenney)
A group of friends and not-so-friends celebrate Halloween in the spooky Hull House and resurrect an old evil with demons.
Atrociously bad (over)acting, a non-existent story and the first 30 minutes simply a drag to go through with annoying characters seem to be the staple of a lot of standard horror flicks with the emphasis on kills and splatter scenes. This one is no different, although it wins its audience over with a suitable Halloween atmosphere and some weird and disgusting scenes. At times it’s even a bit creepy, and luckily enough when the possession starts with blood and guts flying around, it’s actually quite entertaining, although the dialogue and one-liners are still pretty bad. Not really a classic, and not really fitting the “too bad to be good” category, it’s a movie which works quite well to get into the spirit of the season nevertheless.
Night of the Demons 2
Some Catholic school girls and friends throw a Halloween party at the haunted Hull House and the evil demon spirit Angela returns with a vengeance.
The acting is a bit better this time around, although the characters are still annoying which is mainly due to the constant chit-chat of the girls and their general bitchy behavior. Still after a more or less uneventful and boring 30 minutes, the action finally kicks in, and it gets better and better with even more gore and buckets of blood than in the first movie. It’s still not classic material, as the writing isn’t anything particularly new, original ideas and scary moments are few. But again one could do much worse with other splatter movies with an emphasis on comedy.
Night of the Demons 3
(USA 1997, director: Jim Kaufman)
After an accidental shoot-out in a convenience store, a group of teenagers fleds to Hull House where demonic things start again with Angela throwing a bloody Halloween feast.
It’s quite interesting that the series never really gets out of the B-movie mediocrity water with only the monster masks being well-done, while the characters and acting are again pretty bad. So are the CGI special effects which are especially laughable at the beginning. Not having the most sympathetic cast, this movie at least tries to tell a different story with actually some suspense at the beginning which is an improvement over the 30 minutes of dull talk shown in the other movies. It also gets much crazier at the end and offers far more sick jokes than the original had which also means that there’s not a lot of tense and creepy atmosphere left. Still considering how many horror movies get it wrong with each succeeding title, it’s still fun to watch (and weirdly, the trailer is only available in Germany, while the trilogy is on the Index in that country, but the trilogy is also available there for the cheapest price; a vicious circle and strange world censorship lives in).
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