Sunday, June 25, 2006

Roberta Findlay's Lurkers (1988) back on track with the old VHS reviews

I wrote a bit about Roberta Findlay and her late husband Michael, who was killed in a 1977 tragic helicopter accident, in this review of Roberta's Blood Sisters. Michael directed Shriek of the Mutilated. The Findlays as a pair directed Snuff. Like Blood Sisters, Lurkers was one of Roberta Findlay's last movies, directed more than ten years after her husband's death. I believe she retired soon after and is still living today, having recently been interviewed for extras on the Blood Sisters DVD.

Lurkers is a hell of a lot more fun to watch than the boring Blood Sisters, though Lurkers too is a very flawed film. Still, it's pretty fun to watch a picture that attempts to be a low budget version of some bigger supernatural pictures such as Rosemary's Baby, The Sentinel, and The Omen. The editing, done by Roberta herself, is some of the worst I've seen as is the acting. I got so used to scenes not fitting together, that when I from time to time so a single cut that actually worked well, it would distract me because it felt so out of place. One action sequence (for those who have seen the movie, I'm talking bout the sledgehammer chase) was so messy that I could not figure out what was going on at all. If it was disjointed deliberately in order to bring about a dreamlike feeling, then the attempt failed.

On the other hand, Lurkers has got a pretty fun plot and some bizarre sexual, drug-related, and religious imagery to keep the viewer interested. The movie looks ten years older than it is, perhaps because of all the similarities to the popular 70's and 60's movies I mentioned above. There are a ton of unintentional laughs, many involving the evil ghost child and the good ghost woman. All the scary parts are pretty funny, now that I think about it. Of course the last half hour of the movie is the best, when all the evil is revealed at a swanky New York City artist's party.

Judging by reviews on the imdb, this is one of those movies people either love or hate. The movie is available in Rhino's Horrible Horrors Collection Volume 1, which is a low priced DVD bundle. The VHS tape was from Media.

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