Sunday, April 7, 2013

Blood Cult

Director - Christopher Lewis (The Ripper, Revenge)
Starring - Juli Andelman (The Silent Scream), Charles Ellis (Revenge), and James Vance (Cafe Purgatory)
Release Date - 1985
Genre - Horror
Tagline(s) - "In the tradition of horror legends - Psycho, Halloween, Friday the 13th..." and "The first movie made for the home video market...Might just scare you to death"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection) (The Ripper Blood Pack 3 film set)

Rating (out of 5):
     The reason I bought The Ripper Blood Pack set was for the film The Ripper.  I figured Tom Savini would only be in it for a few minutes but I still wanted to see it.  After watching that particular flick I decided to go ahead and watch the two remaining films.  The next film in the set was Blood Cult which was also released in 1985 by the same director.  While playing around online before watching it I discovered that it was Sony's first film made for the home video market.  That definitely spiked my curiosity because I like films with history.  When I hear films are the first to offer up something new, like the first ever shot on video film or the first film to star Rosie O'Donnell after the sex change, it makes me want to watch it regardless of what the film is about.   After reading that I went ahead and threw it in to see if it was worth a damn.

     The film begins with a soapy sorority babe as she is cut down by a maniac with a meat cleaver.  The local sheriff responds to the murder where he discovers a small gold coin with a dog's head on it.  The sheriff turns to his daughter and her husband who work at the local college library.  The couple do some digging and discover that the coin belongs to an ancient blood cult.  Those seeking fortune would make a blood sacrifice to an ancient deity in order to obtain their wealth.  The sheriff starts to notice people are acting funny and these are the same people he has known for years.  The dean of the college wants the sheriff to kick it in to overtime and find the killer responsible all while conducting secret meetings with other townsfolk.  He also finds the coroner messing with the bodies and touching evidence found at the scene of the murders.  All the sheriffs hard work and frustration finally pays off when he has a lead.  A family living in the woods at the edge of town calls the sheriff because they fear poachers are hunting in the woods and has gone as far as to kill their dog.  When the sheriff heads out to investigate he is poisoned and then hit on the head.  After he wakes in the hospital he sets back out to find the killer only to discover that it was his very own daughter.  His daughter, and a majority of town officials, are part of the blood cult and have been making blood sacrifices to get the sheriff re-elected.
     Most movies strive to be spectacular.  That is truly the goal of any filmmaker.  At the beginning of the project they aim to create something truly crowd pleasing.  More than half of those films fail to deliver a film worth watching.  Sometimes you get the rare film that, regardless of how many times you watch it, you just can not determine if it is worth a damn or not. These select few films ride the line of mediocrity and refuse to sway one way or another.  That is this film here.  Blood Cult has an amateurish cast that makes it hard to follow at times.  Most of the cast did have some acting credit prior to this film but it was not enough to improve their acting skills.  I really liked the story and the way it played out on film.  I have a soft spot for ancient curses, cults, and anything slightly related.  It is very rare to see these done right in a film.  Though this film is nothing amazing it still entertained and delivered the story very well.  Finally, the film does offer up some solid special effects and kills.  The special effects are nothing you would expect from the set of a film Savini has worked on but they are still decent.  Overall, this is a solid film that will entertain the first viewing but has no replay value at all.           

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