Sunday, February 7, 2010

The Slayer (1982)

It was many years since I saw The Slayer, and I still have on one of those infamous "Strong Uncut"-releases from Vipco. But because I don't have a vcr anymore, I just had to pick up the uncut dvd that Vipco released in 2003 instead. The quality was okey, better than I thought it would be - but still, it needs a good release from Code Red. 

Kay (Sarah Kendall), an artist with strange dreams, is going with her husband and her brother and his wife to a remote island for some fishing and relaxing. But as soon as they arrive to the island she notices that she's already been there somehow. She's been painting the houses, the views... and soon she feels that this island is connected to the one and single nightmare she had since she was a child. And she's correct, something is lurking on the island, starting to kill them off one after another...

The Slayer is an interesting movie, and far from a bad one too. It's shot and directed with a lot of atmosphere, and the concept actually predates A Nightmare on Elm Street, but it's less fancy and more realistic and down to earth. The island is a perfect setting for a horror movie, and though the bodycount is fairly low and the pacing is slow, this a lot better than some contemporary horror movies with bigger respect from fans. The characters are well written, and most of the time there's good acting to - with some scene here and there of clumsy overacting. The dialogue can be a bit on your nose sometime too, but it's not that irritating.

After a lot of character development the movie picks up with some gruesome murders. While not spectacular, they're brutal and graphic (and especially the pitchfork-murder) and sadistic. Director J.S. Cardone handles both the drama and horror very well, and presents a movie full of nice images, gore and good tension. So the weak thing is actually the script. It works fine for this kinda movie, but still has that terrible awful "twist"-ending that I hate so much. You can probably guess it already, but it's a lazy way to tie the movie together and makes everything more or less meaningless.

But still, a good little movie and deserves a better DVD-treatment.

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