Monday, September 2, 2013

Alone in the Dark (1982)

Directed by Jack Sholder, 1982s Alone in the Dark opens with a head scrambling nightmare and takes off running with an intelligently crafted horror show that will always remind me of vhs tapes and Fangoria magazine.

After their previous psychiatrist leaves for a position at another mental hospital, a foursome of patients start thinking their replacement Dr. Dan Potter (played by Dwight Schultz, Howling Mad on tv's A-Team) has killed the original doc and will soon be trying to do the same to themselves. This foursome is made up of some notable actors: Martin Landau as "Preacher" - an unstable pyromaniac, the very large Erland van Lidth as "Fatty" -  a child killer/molester, Jack Palance as Frank Hawkes - an insanely paranoid ex-POW, and Phillip Clark as the "Bleeder" - a shy homicidal maniac. An area wide blackout allows the four to escape the ward and make their way to Dr. Potter's home with violent intent. A wide eyed Donald Pleasence also rounds out the cast and chews the scenery, as the head of the hospital.

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