19 May 2003 | reptilicus
Was the second time the charm Andy?
What is it that makes directors want to remake their own films? Tod Browning did it with OUTSIDE THE LAW (once in 1921 and again in 1930) and London AFTER MIDNIGHT (the famous lost film of 1927 and the remake MARK OF THE VAMPIRE in 1935). Andy Milligan, Staten Island's own gore master, did it when he remade the 1969 movie THE GHASTLY ONES (1969) as LEGACY OF HORROR.
The plot was nothing new, three women gather to hear the Last Will of the father they barely knew. They are each promised a fortune if they and their husbands will stay for 3 days in an isolated house on a lonely island. Hardly have they settled in when a black hooded killer starts roaming the corridors decreasing the number of potential heiresses. Don't you just hate when that happens?
The killer is so obvious you'd have to be deaf and blind to miss him (oh wait, I said that in my review of THE GHASTLY ONES, didn't I? Well, it applies in this movie too!) but several people are brutally slain. Oh, speaking of that, Andy's gore effects have not changed a bit since the earlier film. If anything, in this remake they are even tamer! The man sawed in half is shown mostly in shadow, Andy's old "pitchfork to the throat" mainstay is suggested rather than shown, and the hand amputation goes by so fast you likely to wonder what happened. If you saw the original you already know who the killer is and what happens at the end so I won't go into it here.
Of course there are the usual Milligan-ism's; most notably the movie takes place shortly after the turn of the 20th century and yet we see a gardener working with a plastic rake. Sorely missed is Hal Borske as Colin, the halfwit servant. The fellow in this film tries hard but but I just don't see the sincerity in the role that Hal gave. Maggie Rogers was missed also.
Andy Milligan was a dear friend of mine and I will watch anything he did because it is fun. LEGACY OF HORROR, though, is not as much fun as THE GHASTLY ONES.