Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Dunwich Horror (1970)

Director: Daniel Haller

Starring: Dean Stockwell, Dandra Dee, Ed Begley, Sam Jaffe, Lloyd Bochner, Talia Shire

More info: IMDb

Tagline: A few years ago in Dunwich a half-witted girl bore illegitimate twins. One of them was almost human!

Plot: Wilbur is a disturbed young warlock who wants to open a demonic portal, in this film based on the classic H.P. Lovecraft horror tale. In short order, Wilbur steals a "black arts" manual from the local university's library and makes plans to sacrifice the college student (Sandra Dee) who handed over the book.

My rating: 5/10

Will I watch it again? Nope. 3 times is enough.

I feel like I've been tortured only I did it to myself. For some reason I always think of this movie being better than it is. That explains the third viewing the other night. I just can do this anymore. One of the biggest reasons for starting this blog is to prevent myself from re-watching movies that I 'thought' were good. I feel at piece with the world knowing this one will never happen again.

It's not a turdfest by any stretch but it's just so damn slow that 87 minutes feel like three hours. You've got Dean Stockwell doing his best to look like 70s porn icon, John Holmes. He's kind of bland but a good friend tells me the character in the book is like that so I can't hold that against Stockwell too much except IT MAKES THE CHARACTER BORING which makes me want to go to sleep.

The art direction is very good, Les Baxter's music is great (I've had the soundtrack for twenty plus years and have listened to it many times before seeing the film), the story is OK I suppose and the supporting cast is fine but the pacing can be dreadful. Oh, and the finale? Not as climactic as you'd think. In a word, it and the movie fizzle. I do not recommend attempting to watch this movie late at night when you tired. It will finish you off in short order. I'll still listen to the soundtrack, though.

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