Movie Review: Night of the Demons

I saw the original “Night of the Demons,” but I don’t remember much about it. I seem to recall that there was a nun chaperoning a dance who kept telling the dancing teens to leave room between them for the Holy Spirit. When the demon got loose and the body count started spiraling that nun kicked some righteous ass. I don’t know if that was the first or second “Night of the Demons,” btw.

The remake stars Shannon Elizabeth, who is barely in the movie. She rents a haunted mansion for a Halloween party and ends up getting possessed by a demon. The results are predictable, except the filmmakers screw up and kill off too many characters too fast. By forty-five minutes in only three characters remain, one of them cannon fodder. Since most of the fun in movies like this is watching people die in creative ways, knocking off half your cast in five minutes is a bad idea.

The writers kill some time leading their characters on a wild goose chase through an underground tunnel and then having them hide out in a magically protected room waiting for dawn, where Maddy (Monica Keena), who is obviously the Final Girl, spouts off an extended infodump about the demons. If they possess seven people before dawn they’ll be let loose on an unsuspecting world, etc., etc. Sure, whatever.

Let’s see, good things. This movie looks decent. It has lots of loud, hip music and bright, garish colors. The protagonists are all attractive, a must in horror movies. There are a few decent special effects, and some gruesome death scenes. I wasn’t crazy about the demon makeup; outside of Angela, they’re all dumb-looking.

Linnea Quigley has a cameo. I didn’t even recognize her! There are some neat effects with bathroom mirrors. I jumped a few times, but that doesn’t mean much because I’m scare-prone. There’s a funny spin-the-bottle scene, which is the only thing I’ll remember about this movie.

I don’t know if the remake of “Night of the Demons” suffers in comparison with the original, because I don’t recall the original, which isn’t exactly a ringing endorsement, but I’ve seen hundreds of bad horror movies so give me a break. There are no kick-ass nuns in this movie, though, which is a shame.

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