John Carradine!!! An actual actor!
That's what when trough my head as the opening credits rolled.... unfortunately, it was a case of "lets book a 'name' for one day and film 3 scenes with him in an inconsequential roll, that way we can get his name on the poster without going over budget" a trick that rarely, if ever, indicates a great film...
The film opens with a couple of kids, Lacy and Willy, perving on their mum getting it on on the sofa with her latest boyfriend (who has one of her stockings placed over his head as part of their foreplay - whether this is because he is a foot fetishist, or she's a bank-robber fetishist is never explained), mum spots them and is complicit in (indeed, encouraging of) her partners selected punishment - the little girl is sent to bed scot free, while her brother is gagged and tied to his bed, while mum and her (still stocking faced) fella go of to finish what they started in the master bedroom.
The little girl decided to free her brother using the biggest fucking knife in the house, before her brother traets us to an 'Halloween' "homage" then stabs the abusive bastard who tied him up (sadly, he lets his mother get away with her part in events).
Instant 'Halloween': Just add eye-holes...
Years later, Lacy and Willy are all growed up, and live on their aunt and uncle's farm, along with Lacy's husband, Jack, and son, Kevin. Willy is mute, and both siblings seem to have issues with knives (which I get) and mirrors (because Lacy watched the murder in a mirror, and Willy.... was watched in a mirror... okay, so I don't know why Willy has mirror issues - but he does!).
Speaking of the farm, having used the above 'Halloween' POV shot, The film-makers obviously decided to cover their asses using the old adage "Steal from one and it's plagerism, steal from many and it's research", because this is the farmhouse:
The Boogymanville Horror.
Lacy and Willie get a letter from their mother requesting they visit, which never happens and is never mentioned again, and to make a long story short (and to break the pattern of my reviews being little more than a cynical synopsis) Lacy's therapist (Carradine, badly underused as I mentioned) suggests that she goes to the house where she grew up - in order to form new memories of the house, which do not involve "that night".
Speaking of the shrink, the hypnosis session leads to another "better movie 'homage'" scene:
"Your mother sucks boogymen in hell!"
By the way - does anyone else think it odd that the slightly-perturbed sibling has a shrink, but the one who actually killed someone and hasn't spoken a word in the 20 years since is left to his own devices to collect knives?
Anyhoo, as luck would have it, the old house is up for sale, so Lacy and Jack go to see the place, where they encounter the (ahead of his time) brilliantly named "Timmy", who lives in the house with his 2 older siosters (and their parents, who are away). Why brilliantly named? well, this:
Thankfully, Timmy and his siblings are cannon fodder, and don't last long after our leads leave (although one of them is incredibly soft skulled, being killed my a tap on the noggin with a medicine cabinet door).
While they are there, Lacy visits her Mum's old bedroom (where Willy did in the asshat) and she is convinced she sees old stocking face in the mirror; this being a movie, she has no qualms whatsoever about picking up a chair in someone else's house and battering the mirror into pieces! Her husband pays for the damage, and takes the pieces of mirror home to glue back together (!) in an attempt to demonstrate to his wife that the mirror is safe (except for all of the sharp broken-glass edges, obviously) and jebus, is this guy good at puzzles?!
Willy admires his brother-in-law's mad jigsaw skillz.
All of which amounts to set-up as, finally, 45 minuets into the movie's 80 minuet run time, the haunted mirror and the traumatised duo are all where they need to be! Huzzah!
From here on in people get possessed, other people die, priests are called, a mirror fragment flies across the room and embed itself as a ghoulish monocle, and being stabbed in the back causes a certain character to bleed profusely... from the top of his head (!).
From a technical point of view, the film is reminiscent of John Carpenter; before you get too excited, I want to to remember that Carpenter is a very overrated film maker! There; I said it! yes, I know it's horror heresy, but lets remember that he didn't just bring us "Halloween", "Halloween II", "The Thing" and "In the mouth of Madness"; he also gave the world a dreadful segment "hair" from the movie "Body Bags", the gadawfull (and utterly unnecessary) "Village of the Damned" remake, the risible "Vampires" and the decidedly average "Prince of Darkness" (worth seeing mainly for the bit where Alice Cooper runs someone through with a bicycle), so when I say "reminiscent of John Carpenter", I mean "...but not on a good day".
All in all, it's not so bad, but it's not great either - I want to tell you that it's terrible and don't bother, but I think I'm just losing patience with these films, as I gave both Anthropophagus
Body Count: 8
Animal Body Count: 0
Boob Count: 1 pair
Most Memorable Death: French kiss kebab.
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