Tuesday, July 12, 2011

NIGHTMARES (1980)


Also known as Stagefright and, no, not the Soavi film. This tells the tale of a little girl who watches her mother die in a horrible car accident and she is scarred forever. Flash forward to her twenties and she is psychotic. Acting in a play she decides to whack everyone in the play. She uses shards of broken glass to do the deed and is very fond of stabbing people while they are naked.
The film is shot like a giallo, but one where there is no doubt as to who the killer is. It makes the big reveal at the end seem kind of humorous.
Also, I don't care how crazy you are, there is no way to shove a piece of broken glass through a theater seat into someone nd kill them. Even wearing gloves, that glass would shred your hand.  The film is filled with nudity and blood. Not a lot of gore.
This is one of those films that would have done better with a different title and waited a couple of years. Mindless slasher films filled the mid 80's and this would have done really well in that environment.
Probably the best aspect of this Severin release would have to be the commentary with director John D. Lamond and Not Quite Hollywood director, Mark Hartley. When Lamond was first approached by backers for a film he told them he had a script ready and gave them a brief synopsis. He was making it up as he went. On his next meeting he brought a script which was a script for The Exorcist with the title page torn off and replaced with one with Nightmares on the cover.
Listening to Lamond tell of his exploits in making Nightmares is infinitely preferable to watching the film without the commentary tends to be dull and predictable viewing.
Just the commentary makes this a film worth watching.



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