Fear No Evil
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Review by Nickolas Cook
What do you get when you mix a rock and roll teen movie with devil horror? Of course, you get FEAR NO EVIL, Frank LaLoggia's 1980 low budget drive-in masterpiece of young lust and a vengeful Satan.
For those of you unfamiliar with the movie it's a simple tale of three angels, now in contemporary human forms, who must destroy a young satanic youth (played straight faced by uber-Goth looking Stefan Arngrim), possessed by an ancient Lucifer. The forms that the three defending angels take, an elderly priest, his aged serenely spirited sister, and a young innocent high school girl, are only slightly reminiscent of THE EXORCIST, but owe a great deal to the success of Friedken's bigger budget devil scare. Thrown into the mix, we have teen sex, drinking, drugs, guns, fighting (even a fatal game of dodge ball), and lots of very cool 80s style alternative music. The soundtrack alone is worth the viewing.
But the strengths of the film lay mostly in the older actors' strong performances, as they work hard to make the mostly silly plot believable. Arngrim also turns in a stark, maybe at times a bit overacted, performance as the reincarnated Lucifer. His reactions tend to pull us along with him, and make him a very sympathetic evil. The unfortunate casting of a talentless young Kathleen Rowe McAllen is the biggest detraction from the movie, as she looks woefully into the camera and tries hard to convince as a high school girl. But she does almost nothing to help the ailing plot, and seems almost an afterthought to the cast.
FEAR NO EVIL has a quick beginning, but lags in the middle, as it stumbles through a couple of wasted sub-plots that fall short of logic and emotion.Read more ›
The film starts off pretty well, as we witness a battle between what is supposed to be the devil incarnate and a priest, and the holy roller wins out...but don't count old Scratch out yet, as he makes a comeback in the form of a baby named Andrew. After one of the more exciting (and bloody) christenings I've seen, we fast-forward about 17 years to see a grown Andrew, played by Arngrim, a gangly, straight A student and senior in high school...oh yeah, and he's also the devil incarnate (I wonder where that fits in on his transcripts).Read more ›
Despite the shortcomings, it is a guilty pleasure and moves at a nice pace (and an excellent soundtrack). La Loggia does illustrate a nice touch in some scenes with a creepy atmosphere (particularly the death scene involving the character acting as Jesus during the play commemorating the Passion). As the movie progresses however, it does give the audience the impression of being a "Christian horror movie", by becoming overtly preachy. It left me with the feeling that I had watched a movie produced by the same folks who made Omega Code, only with more violence. As for the ending, well.....laughably bad. But take it with a dose of salt.
If you rent it based on the creepy cover art and expect a zombie filled, gory horror movie you'll be sorely disappointed. Go in with the expectation of watching a cheesy piece of brain candy and it'll be far more tolerable.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A terrible waste of time. Let's move along people, nothing to see here, just a lot of miscellaneous scenes jumbled together -- in the hopes that something will "stick". Read morePublished 5 months ago by Niles508
This movie was great! It brought back so many memories for me and it came in great condition. Thank youPublished 24 months ago by Nero Jenkins