Reel Advice from the Video Store Guy

Night of the Demons | Triple Dog

By Steve Anderson
January 1st, 2011

Night of the DemonsNight of the Demons
***
DVD
Directed by Adam Gierasch
Written by Adam Gierasch, Jace Anderson
Starring Shannon Elizabeth, Edward Furlong, Monica Keena, Bobbi Sue Luther, Linnea Quigley
2010
R
93 mins

Gather round, gather round, kiddies, because you're going to see something you probably never expected to see from me--sentimentality. That's right, folks, I must be getting old and soft, because I'm about to go all sentimental on a movie. I've been looking forward to hitting the Night of the Demons remake for some time, and so, here I go.

Night of the Demons takes us out to the Broussard Mansion down in New Orleans for a Halloween party. And it doesn't take long for the cops to show up and break things up. But they've missed a few folks who decide to keep the party going, and that may well be their last mistake. A horde of demons comes forth after the young party goers...and by extension, their souls.

Already you'll notice a variety of differences--Angela is no longer the dejected nerd but some kind of underground figure in the party scene. However, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Look for Linnea Quigley to reprise her ballerina costume, complete with way too deep bend from the waist. It's nice to see those touches that prove at least some respect for the source material. Though I'm not sure how I feel about seeing someone dressed up in a Little Billy costume pedalling a tricycle. A little too commercial, I think, but at the same time, a bit more of the moment. Small point, I know, but important.

It's not a very faithful remake--aside from "people trapped in a house being chased by demons", there's not too much in common with the original here--but it isn't really a bad one. If you're one of those who wants a faithful remake then you're going to be sorely disappointed here. And that's okay, frankly--it's got it's own particular charms. The whole "arms breaking through the bleeding wall" sequence is actually pretty awesome to see. It's downright frantic.

The ending is a little on the cliched side but with plenty of action, so I'm willing to give it a pass.

The special features include English subtitles, some audio options, a trailer (with some other trailers only accessible from the beginning and not the menu, something I've never liked), footage of the Comic-Con introduction, a making-of featurette, and an audio commentary track.

All in all, as remakes go, Night of the Demons isn't half bad. Sure, it's not very kind to its source material, but it will do a decent job if nothing else, and that says a lot, especially these days. It's a worthwhile homage, but I would've preferred it to stick a little closer to the original.

Triple DogTriple Dog
***
DVD
Directed By Pascal Franchot
Written By Barbara Marshall
Starring Brittany Robertson, Alexia Fast, Scout Taylor Compton, Emily Tennant
2010
R
95 mins

One of the last couple movies we'll be talking about this year is Triple Dog, a horror thriller of sorts that'll show you just what teenage girls are doing at slumber parties: bizarre games involving dares, and occasionally, murder.

Triple Dog takes out for a sleepover, as I mentioned, with a gaggle of teenage girls. And lest you think this will devolve into a lot of chatter about who likes who and the various geopolitical issues of high school, it'll turn bizarre soon enough. As the dares go on throughout the night, the girls' game of Triple Dog accelerates wildly out of control, and even they learn a lot more than they wanted to as one dare causes them to find out some unpleasant truths about the suicide of a former student they went to school with.

Teenage girls, man...I had no idea things were like this. Within minutes of starting they dare the clear virgin to go streaking through the neighborhood. I mean, I had teenage girls for friends back in high school and it was nothing like this. I consulted with a female friend of mine on this one, and she assures me that this kind of thing went on like ALL THE TIME.

But still, not only is it interesting to watch for the weird social interaction of girls, it's also interesting in the way the characters change throughout the movie. Not all of them will, of course, but some do, and those changes are something to see.

Even better, they intersperse their thriller moments with a whole lot of teenage-girl strangeness, so there's plenty of variety thrown in the mix. Some of it can actually get pretty hair-raising, which is a lot more than I expected out of a movie about a sleepover party game.

About the only downside to this is a relatively weak ending, which frankly can't summon up sufficient stones to support the scares it put out earlier. And that's a shame, in all honesty, because this was pretty good stuff up until it terminally dropped the ball in the last fifteen minutes.

The special features include a set of audio options and a selection of deleted scenes.

All in all, Triple Dog will do pretty well for the most part. Sure, it has its weak points, but this will be surprisingly scary when it wants to be, and still watchable when it isn't scary.

Want to receive an expanded version of Reel Advice as an E-Newsletter?? Email to thevideostoreguy@columnist.com with "The Advisor" in the subject line.  Steve Andersen, much to his own chagrin, is a five-plus year veteran of the direct to video market. He has spent an alarming amount of time in video stores and seeks to provide the public with advance information on all the video releases that they may never have heard of...whether they want to hear of them or not. Steve appears in one way or another weekly, biweekly, or monthly on such fine entertainment-related ezines as Film Threat, Dream Forge, Reel Horror, Acid Logic, Chaotic Culture Magazine, Malicious Bitch webzine, and many others. Readers, agents, or editors can email Steve at thevideostoreguy@columnist.com




HOME - LINKS - SEARCH - BUY!!!
Columns - Features - Interviews - Fiction - Acid Radio - GuestBook Sign/View - Blogs
View ForbistheMighty.com for more sin and wackiness!

Email Publisher