Thursday, December 16

Some quick thoughts on Evil Spirits (1990)

Karen Black goes all Norma Bates hearing the disembodied voice of her husband who comfortably rests in her bedroom as a corpse. She runs a boardinghouse, collecting checks, and killing occupants. Michael Berryman is one of the residents; a struggling writer that loves to ogle through walls at topless dancing from beautiful, minor scream queen Debra Lamb. Screen veterans Virginia Mayo, Arte Johnson, Bert Remsen, and Robert Quarry also make regrettable appearances.

Gary Graver's Evil Spirits is honestly one of the worst horror movies I've ever seen. This pain attempts to sell itself as a horror comedy, but both aspects are uncaringly mishandled by an inept work-for-hire filmmaker that mostly undertook smut quickies. The experience of watching can be likened to being at the funeral of someone you really didn't know surrounded by equally unknown mourners. It's still sad despite having no substantive attachment, which only adds an off-putting awkwardness to enduring the affair. Or perhaps a horrible nightmare in which you awaken in the middle of an enormous tank of shit with no sense of direction, light, or air. That's probably the better tantamount scenario.

No, having Berryman constantly snack on everything from cupcakes to pickles in all of his scenes isn't funny. It's only more reminder the man who was Pluto might be the most underappreciated working horror icon. One helluva nice gentleman in person who can surprisingly act when allowed regulated to freakshow status by his visage. Black goes through the motions and hopefully Rob Zombie mailed her this flick after she demanded more money to reprise in The Devil's Rejects. Debra Lamb has a nice striptease scene that's worth fast-forwarding to and then chucking the cassette in the trash after those few minutes. The rest of the cast comprised of seasoned actors, given their history in the business, just look crushed having to resort to such dreck in their twilight years. Unfunny paycheck work by actors who deserve better with its scant unsatisfying kills arriving way late. I'm unsure when Prism Entertainment finally closed shop, but I'd bet it wasn't too long after this dog.


Andrew said...

Heh heh....
Good review. I'll stay away from this movie.

Elgart said...

Looks like another list of the movie to stay away from.

Jayson Kennedy said...

Haha, I know I'm usually a hard sell on nearly everything I talk about here, but this was a complete waste of time. you dare tread upon the staircase?

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