Saturday, October 08, 2016


(1982) **
I am slowly in the process of catching up on the Classic or Foundational-Level horror movies. I try to mix up the variety of films I watch every year with the old and new, traditional and not. This film was one such foundational horror movie I could not pass up for another year, yet I started regretting this decision once I noted it was a Spielberg movie.

As many of you know, a down to earth couple and their three children are terrorized by spirits who don’t know what they want aside from terrorizing the living. So far, so good! When the youngest child, Carol Anne is abducted through a portal in her bedroom closet, her parents do whatever they can to get her back.

First of all, this movie felt like it was three times longer than it actually was (114 minutes). It felt like neither horror nor family movie despite the paranormal activity or chirpy soundtrack, so you really felt like you were experiencing the family’s plight in real time. However, the family itself was about as interesting to me as cardboard and the parents couldn’t handle keeping all three of the children simultaneously safe and out of danger’s way. One of them always seems to be left behind, staring blankly into the void while the others run about screaming, only to return back to the child, screaming in desperation to try and save them from impending ghoulish malintent.
Don't get fresh with me, Bozo!
Their son Robert gets eaten by a possessed tree, Carol Ann is left in her bedroom staring at the forces emitting from her closet while parents run out screaming at Robert. Carol Ann is swept into the closet, and parents run inside screaming at her! Thank goodness the eldest is off on a date with a teenage boy, safe and sound from any danger. All I’m saying is, don’t have three kids if you’re not going to corral them all to safety at once.

This movie only served to check off a long list of movies I’ve been meaning to see over the years. I can’t really say I’d recommend it unless you’re a preteen having a slumber party. Or if you have a soft spot for inappropriately cheesy music before the undead wreak havoc on an unsuspecting family.


Catfreeek said...

Wow, now that's an interesting take. I don't think I've ever known anyone who hadn't either seen this when it came out (it was hugely innovative for that time) or seen it when they were a teenager.

JPX said...

I loved this movie when I was a kind d but I completely agree with your take on it now. I revisited the series a few years ago and was very disappointed that it did not hold up for me. The sequels are awful.

AC said...

I like the fact that your viewing was totally unaffected by prior watching experience or nostalgia. I would rate it a little higher than two stars but agree with your criticisms.

Trevor said...

I do love this one, but agree that by today's standards, the parenting depicted in the film borders on criminal negligence. getting high around the toddler? laughing at the sexual harassment of your daughter? oy!

DKC said...

I haven't watched this is in a long time and I'm now intrigued as to how it would hold up for me.
Very interesting take!