Saturday, 5 March 2011

The Devonsville Terror (1983)

I came across this in a local charity shop that appears to have had a sizeable big-box-VHS- horror collection donated to it. I asked if they had any more in the back room, but there was no real answer and thus I am limited to visiting them regularly to pick up the delights they allow out onto their video section. This 1983 shocker was directed by Ulli Lommel (the man behind the video-nasty era version of The Bogeyman), and stars Suzanna Love and Robert Walker Jr alongside a marvellously hammy performance from Donald Pleasence in all of his sinister, quietly spoken glory.

The film tells the story of Devonsville, a town carrying a curse after three women are killed after accusations of Witchcraft. When three young women come to the town in the present day (after a disturbed man kills his wife and activates the curse), the locals are convinced the three witches are back. However, only one of them is a reincarnation of a witch, and sets about taking her revenge upon the townsfolk, without really knowing who she is carrying within her. All of which is utter tosh, but it's entertaining tosh.
The paper the script was printed on would have made a better actor than anyone in the cast aside from Donald Pleasence, but the film is worth watching, while never striving for great heights. The opening sequence of the witch trials is the best part of the movie, and features certain imagery that is quite shocking (the witch tied to a wheel, set on fire and rolled down a hill sequence is particularly horrific).

The second act drags a little, the plot seemingly going in circles, but once the third act kicks in, there's some prime-time schlock to savour, with blood, gore and exploding heads flinging nastiness at your screen before the credits roll. A fun little supernatural horror film with an entertaining take on the old 'resurrected witch' trope.

Aside from the film, the big-box it is packed in is a thing of beauty, released by VTC, and features some delightfully awful trailers (Superstition and Spasm, both ludicrous). I'm most pleased with this addition to the towers of trash cinema I own, and am eager to find more.

1 comment:

  1. This looks worth checking out, mind you anything from Donald Pleasence is!