2 May 2008 | lost-in-limbo
It's not a good idea to call your teacher a Satanist.
It's the solid performances from some recognisable faces that lift this all too typical boy-who-cried-wolf theme in this inconsistent low-budget satanic thriller. What strike me the most was how the storyline is so close to Tom Holland's terrific vampire film 'Fright Night (1985)', but it comparison it does lack the charm and thrills of that film. Vampires no more, but Satanists are the flavour. The hysterically unusual pairing of a wearily scorning Allan Garfield and playfully loony Michael J Pollard was a hammy blast as the two Satanist brothers. Derek Rydall and Teresa Vander Woude make for appealing teen leads that get caught up in the devilish mess. Richard Roundtree's no-bull performance is lean, but potent as the detective on the case and Elliott Gould is amusing as a retired detective who comes out of retirement to help out the teenagers. In support roles the ravishing Shannon Tweed and eventual porn-star Teri Wiegel added some sexual energy. Henry Gibson also pops up. Director Rupert Hitzig hones in a workable display and keeps it on the move, even if his jump tactics inadequately fail. Anyhow the predictably implausible and contrived screenplay seems to be playing it for camp laughs, than actual chills. Just wait for the chainsaw and shotgun clash! It's like it's made up of a bunch of comical errors and eccentric passages, but one or two sequences install some welcoming suspense. But really, the humour does overplay it. And what was the idea of that corn-riddled, over extended ending accompanied with a howling song. It was awful! The whip-lashed musical score drums up the repetitive chanting ala 'The Omen' style, but it doesn't come near Goldsmith's classic piece.