HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Great White
Spy Who Came in from the Cold, The
Raya and the Last Dragon
Letter from Paris
Behind the Mask
Lucky
Matrix, The
Undergods
Betrayed
Fried Barry
Once Upon a River
Cowboys
Atlantis
We Still Say Grace
Enfant Terrible
Nomadland
Playboy of the Western World, The
Bike Thief, The
Threshold
Virtuoso, The
Here are the Young Men
Beast Beast
Labyrinth of Cinema
Justice Society: World War II
Artist's Wife, The
Truman & Tennessee: An Intimate Conversation
Pusher III
Palm Springs
Devil Commands, The
Oak Room, The
Pusher II
Forget Everything and Run
Secrets & Lies
Red Moon Tide
Man with Nine Lives, The
Pusher
Pot Carriers, The
Black Bear
Don't Cry, Pretty Girls!
Portal
   
 
Newest Articles
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
   
 
  Inn of the Damned Dread And Breakfast
Year: 1975
Director: Terry Bourke
Stars: Judith Anderson, Alex Cord, Michael Craig, Joseph Fürst, Tony Bonner, John Meillon, John Morris, Robert Quilter, Diana Dangerfield, Carla Hoogeveen, Don Barkham, John Nash, Philip Avalon, Lionel Long, Gordon Glenwright, Nat Levison, Louis Wishart
Genre: Horror, WesternBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: The year is 1896 and in this remote area of Australia it is hoped money may be made with prospecting - a lot of money. To that end, a wealthy English businessman is on his way to the region, taking the stagecoach overnight, acompanied by his manservant and a couple of loose women they have picked up while at a tavern. However, they stop at an inn run by elderly German couple Caroline Straulle (Judith Anderson) and her husband Lazar Straulle (Joseph Fürst) which seems perfectly nice, that is until the Englishman and his floozie get into bed and something unusual occurs...

Although that part of the film is largely forgotten about until almost an hour later, when the plot gets into gear. This was one of the films directed by Australian Terry Bourke where he attempted to make homegrown answers to the big foreign hits, which in that case meant Hollywood, so he decided to create a Western. Not a unique idea, there were plenty of countries which made their own versions of what was a specifically American genre, but as if lacking confidence in just the one form of moviemaking he added a dose of horror into it, apparently aspiring to be an Aussie Alfred Hitchcock, if the Master of Suspense had ever made a Western.

Not that Inn of the Damned came across as especially Hitchcockian, not for the main part at least, as the narrative grew bogged down in rather clichéd horse opera affairs such as the lawman hunting down the outlaw with a price on his head, the lawman in question being Cal Kincaid (Alex Cord, an American import should you be in any doubt of the aspirations here). Kincaid gets his man after quite a bit of running time, and as the movie ran a good two hours you might have observed some trimming could have been carried out to fashion a more streamlined chiller, but Bourke wanted to pack as much into his efforts as possible on this evidence, and that included making his Western.

But he didn't hire Dame Judith Anderson (as she was credited in the opening titles) for a mere handful of scenes as an innkeeper, as she had to go crazy in a Gothic kind of way, much like many a respected star of old would in the horror movies which arrived after Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? was such a hit. Despite being Australian herself, Anderson only made one film in the land of her birth and this was it, but at least she lent a touch of class, something enhanced by the extremely picturesque landscapes the work was shot in, all lovingly photographed by Brian Probyn as if he were making some kind of Australian heritage cinema rather than an exploitation movie with pretensions.

The inn is where the mayhem takes place, most memorably with a four poster bed which has its ceiling descend to crush the occupants, whereupon Mr Straulle dumps the bodies in the well. Quite why they feel the need to bump off their customers isn't explained till the end, and even then isn't hugely convincing outside of the movie needing an explanation for the bloody murder and that would have to do. In the meantime, in spite of the classy gloss, we did get to see such sequences as two women, stepmother and stepdaughter, visiting the inn to get out of the rain and spend most of the rest of their scenes stark naked, with the addition that the older woman is a predatory lesbian intent in taking advantage of her teenage charge. It is bits such as that which reveal Bourke's true intentions, as do the suspense sequences which end with people getting an axe to the brain or whatever, and it's true this rarely seems as if he could get the two genres to marry up, but it's fairly compelling no matter its overlength. Lush music by Bob Young.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1854 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: