Frightmare (1983)

First off, I like the title of this film immensely! It truly is a title made out of the 1980s. Bravo. Unfortunately, the movie doesn’t carry the same level of awesome as the title does. The other name for this movie is Horror Star, which is about as asinine as the movie.

An aging horror actor, Conrad Radzoff (think Vincent Price), once famous and proud, is facing the humiliating end of his career and life. He has turned into a giant douche with a penchant for murder. That is, until he dies. Then he turns into an even bigger douche. But let me back up a bit.

After Conrad the legend dies, a college horror film society (supposedly dedicated to respecting and honoring the classics) decides to steal the body of the famous actor and disco dance with him. This makes sense, you see, because they are complete ass hats. The college kids, including a young Jeffrey Combs, pull a Weekend at Bernie’s with the corpse in a giant mansion that they have for some reason. The catch, the horror legend doesn’t appreciate this behavior, and he isn’t about to let a little thing like being dead stop him from exacting his revenge.

The plot aside, the problem is with the filmmaking. The acting is sub-par, not that that matters in this kind of film. The kids are supposed to be disposable. The Devil is in the details. The deaths for the most part are boring – nothing inventive is displayed here. The kids spend the majority of the movie isolated, in a way that only bad horror does, even though they are all in the same place. I don’t care how big a house is, there is no reason for everyone to always be lost.

The other key flaw is the pacing, felt slow and mismanaged. I actually had to watch the second half of the film because I fell asleep during my first viewing. Not a good sign.

Frightmare is probably a skip, unless you are a Dr. West completist or noting better is on Netflix.

Snore Factor: ZZZ

IMDB 1982


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