Friday, March 24, 2017

Night Stalker (1979)

aka Nightstalker, aka Don't Go Near the Park, aka Sanctuary for Evil, aka Curse of the Living Dead

How bad is it? Surprisingly professional, but still cheap and bizarre, crap.
Should you see it? Okay, yes. [I think I've been getting lenient of late]

I saw this in the theater when it came out (yes, I'm old). People discover it because it has Aldo Ray and Linnea Quigley and was on the UK Video Nasties list, but it's a typical, if strange, zombie film. Thousands of years ago, a cavewoman curses her incestuous children to eternal life and they prevent aging by becoming cannibals, but there's an out: he has to sire a child that they sacrifice when a teen. Cut to the present, when they are in L.A. and the plot goes all weird. There's a magic amulet that causes a van (obviously pulled by a rope) to go over the side of a bridge and explode... and how does the girl get out?! A man sneaks into a woman's house and watches her in the shower... and she rents him a room! The opening title card has spelling errors, corpses blink, there's a shoddy aging dissolve shot of Tammy Taylor (NOT the better known Tamara Taylor, but billed as Tamara)...

The film is surprisingly well-shot (kudos Mr. Cinematographer), which sort of makes the terrible makeup and effects look all the worse. The acting ranges from passable to terrible. The film's a bit slow until the end, when all the action takes place.

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