Horrorfest 2022 Presents: Grave Robbers (1989, Rubén Galindo Jr.)


In Grave Robbers, a long dead cursed executioner who wanted to birth the Antichrist is revived and goes on a pretty brutal killing spree. At times he seemed like your typical unstoppable undead slasher villain, and I’m sure he was inspired by the other horror movie villains from the 1980s. Grave Robbers is not as good as some of Rubén Galindo Jr.’s other movies, yet I thought it had some good moments.

This was a mostly satisfying horror movie, and I was greatly amused by how the evil executioner has magical powers just cause he’s the movie’s villain. The youths dumb enough to rouse him from his slumber are likable enough, and this movie has a pretty high body count. Viewed thanks to Shudder, and wonderfully goofy enough for me to recommend to people.

Horrorfest 2022 Presents: Cementerio del terror aka Cemetery of Terror (1985, Rubén Galindo Jr.)


Rubén Galindo Jr. seems to be a pretty good horror movie director based on what I’ve seen from him so far. Cemetery of Terror is a good example of his talents, and including two groups of youths dealing with an undead serial killer. The older group of kids bring him back and the younger group having the misfortune to be in the same area when it happens.

Hugo Stiglitz stars as a psychiatrist trying to stop the killer by any means necessary. This movie begins as a slow burn, then features tons of gore and murders. The ending made me grin too, since it was the old fashioned freeze frame moment that used to be a thing in movies. The movie is quite good although none of the youths really stood out to me and it’s probably a good thing that Stiglitz was cast in this one since he’s a well known cult movie actor.

I do like how Cemetery of Terror is a combination of slasher movies, zombie films and supernatural elements as well. That’s a nice bunch of different horror sub-genres woven into one movie. I saw this on Shudder, which has a good batch of foreign horror movies. Check it out.

Horrorfest 2022 Presents: Blood Hook (1986, Jim Mallon)


Blood Hook tries to be a funny 1980s slasher movie, but it just reminds me of a bad joke I’ve heard told by different people over the years. It wasn’t funny the first time, and it won’t be funny years from now. I’ll give the movie some points for a few good kills, an amusing enough fisherman fight and for trying something new. That’s about it, though, cause the rest of this movie stinks.

It stinks worse than fish guts, really, and this is the first Troma movie that I didn’t like or care for at all. Too bad, and I think they should remake this one. Up the gore, lean into how people take fishing way too seriously, find some better actors and maybe offer a sly commentary on resort towns. It could work, maybe. Then again, maybe not.

Horrorfest 2022 Presents: The Stepfather II (1989, Jeff Burr),


The first Stepfather movie is an effective cult classic that works very well and literally created Lifetime movies before they existed (shoutout to Joe Bob Briggs for pointing that out). We ended up with a sequel that shouldn’t have happened cause if you saw the first movie he well, should have been dead. I know we are used to slasher villains being indestructible but come on, man! This is ridiculous.

Terry O’Quinn isn’t given the same great one liners as he was in the first movie, and he seems to be second banana at times in his own movie. The people in this one pale in comparison to the mom and daughter in the first movie, and it’s too bad since Meg Foster is a good actress. I was left bored for most of this movie which is a bad thing and nothing really cool happens until much later.

It’s almost as if they forgot everything that made the first movie good. Too bad, and I won’t bother with the third movie. I doubt it’s nothing more but diminishing returns. The ending was oddly satisfying, at least, mostly because it meant the movie was over. Thank God I watched this for free on Crackle. I did like Caroline Williams in this one, she should have been the main lady instead.

Horrorfest 2014 Presents: Visiting Hours (1982, Jean-Calude Lord)


The hospital setting is a pretty good one for Visiting Hours, which has a cool poster and a good trailer. Alas I was left mostly unimpressed by this early 1980s slasher, which bugs me since this should have been in my wheelhouse. The cast makes up for some of the weaker elements however-Lee Grant and Michael Ironside are both great in this movie-and it even has William Shatner randomly popping up later on.

The final act is really intense and quite brutal, yet most of this film is too slow and the scenes outside the hospital drag at times. I’m not sure if this movie is a feminist driven piece or if the director doesn’t like women considering the awful things Ironside’s serial killer puts the movie’s female characters through. I didn’t hate Visiting Hours, still I didn’t really like it either. This is sometimes the case with horror movies and cinema in general.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: Sorority House Massacre (1986, Carol Frank)


Made at the height of the 1980s slasher craze, Sorority House Massacre feels a tad cliche and old hat by that point. Yet the characters are likable enough, the kills are brutal and it has decent enough pacing to be an alright movie. A bunch of college ladies are hanging out in an house, only the house was once home to gruesome murders!

Unfortunately for them, the new woman (Angela O’Neill) who moved in has a tie to those killings. Does the killer return and kill a bunch of people? You bet. Is this movie a quasi ripoff of Halloween? Um, kind of to a certain degree. Did I mind? Not really, as Halloween and Friday the 13th clones were common in this era. The title may be dumb but I enjoyed this movie as much as I possibly could.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: The Dead Pit (1989, Brett Leonard)


This randomly popped up on Shudder and so I decided to check out The Dead Pit, a late 1980s horror movie. This flick is a much a supernatural Americanized giallo as it is a slasher movie. These blending of elements work in the film’s favor, as does it’s likable main characters. The Dead Pit isn’t a great film, however it is very well paced and is very satisfying. The asylum setting is pretty good, and is very unnerving. The entire movie is appropriately bleak.

The Jane Doe, played by Cheryl Lawson, arrives at an old crumbling asylum with amnesia. Aided by a fellow patient, Chris (Stephen Gregory Foster), she tries to uncover the mystery of her memory loss. I liked how this movie was shot, using lots of green and building up a general sense of menace, hinting at nasty, dark hidden secrets.

Danny Gochnauer is fantastic as Dr. Ramzi, the movie’s evil sadistic villain, matched by Jeremy Slate as  Dr. Gerald Swan. The finale even goes full blown Fulci with the undead, which is cool. Chris is one of those awesome secondary movie characters, and Lawson is a good sympathetic main character. Check this flick out on Shudder while you still can.

A Brood of Brainwashed Blood Thirsty Killers (Strange Behavior, 1981)


Note: This is a lost Horrorfest review that after some changes and editing I’m presenting to you horror fans:

As much a slasher movie as it is a sci-fi “Science gone amok” movie, the under rated cult film Strange Behavior is a rather odd, and thus stands out from its brethren. By the time of Strange Behavior’s release, slasher movies were a large part of the horror genre and 1980s was about to usher in the sub-genere’s heyday. Created a year after Halloween clone Friday the 13th, Strange Behavior has been somewhat forgotten, perhaps because of its weird plot. Or maybe the numerous slasher movies that followed left more of an impression upon viewers.

Having now seen way more 80s slasher movies since viewing this film, I now realize even more how unique and original this movie really is. Weird experiments taking place at a local college are resulting in the studies’ willing guinea pigs killing people at random. What it all really means is a mystery, however someone is maybe pulling the strings from behind the scenes.

The film’s dreamlike 80s pop style soundtrack, well executed by Tangerine Dream, only makes this movie feel and seem even more bizarre. However the film doesn’t seem to go far enough with its commentary on conformity and leaves behind the science implications in favor of gory yet well crafted terror inspiring moments that really fail to be scary if you have viewed a horror movie before.

What really sticks out in my mind is how the film ends-the last act is really quite unexpected. Considering that it was fairly well made and is clearly smarter than most of the slasher films that followed, Strange Behavior is a rare gem. I thank TCM for airing the movie when they did back in 2010, and I hope that more people get a chance to check out a most welcomed addition to the slasher genre. 82/100

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