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Masters of Horror: Fair Haired Child

37 customer reviews

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(Dec 12, 2006)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Deep within the desperate hearts of the bereaved, there is a pact with the forces of darkness that demands new blood to resurrect the souls of the dead. Lori Petty ( A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN and TANK GIRL) stars as a grieving mother with a remote estate, a ghastly secret, and a locked basement where abducted teen outcasts await an evil that feasts upon their virgin flesh. But to satisfy a parent’s depraved bargain, the beast must feed one final time. And tonight, the ultimate horror will begin for those who do not heed the hunger of THE FAIR HAIRED CHILD. Lindsay Pulsipher and William Samples co-star in this relentlessly creepy saga scripted by Matt Greenberg (HALLOWEEN H20, REIGN OF FIRE) and directed by William Malone that The Horror Channel calls "a perfect dark fairy tale…one of the most solid and impressive episodes to date




The ninth episode in the celebrated Masters of Horror series, The Fair Haired Child, unfortunately may have the least scare power. Director William Malone's (Feardotcom, The House on Haunted Hill) choice to cast the outcast teen, Tara (Lindsay Pulsipher), as a cute blond girl more suited to The O.C. than to horror, spoils an initial opportunity to convince the viewer of her suffering. Weak acting is the biggest detriment, however. As Tara is kidnapped and thrown into a psychotic couple's basement as a sacrifice to the Devil to bring their dead son, Johnny (Jesse Haddock), back to life, Tara's fear fails to translate into real dread. Black-and-white flashbacks of the sick married couple watching helplessly as their son drowns are equally corny. Johnny, the child zombie haunted by guilt he feels for living at the expense of others, especially Tara's, is the only interesting character. The fact that he is mute, communicating by scribbling thoughts into dirt, makes him eerily prophetic. As a character, Johnny terrifies more than the stop-motion demon who steals teens away to the netherworld. Like House of Whipcord, this story of a basement-turned-torture chamber has appeal for its archetypal plot concept, but The Fair Hair Child lacks actors who convey real angst. --Trinie Dalton

Special Features

  • Commentary by Director William Malone and Writer Matt Greenberg
  • "The Face Of Fear: An Interview with William Malone" featurette
  • "Working With A Master: William Malone" featurette
  • "Behind The Scenes: The Making of Fair Haired Child" featurette
  • On Set: An Interview with Jesse Haddock
  • On Set: An Interview with Lori Petty
  • On Set: An Interview with Lindsay Pulsipher
  • On Set: An Interview with William Samples
  • Scene from William Malone's first short film
  • Trailers
  • Still Gallery
  • William Malone Bio
  • Screenplay (DVD-ROM)
  • Screensaver (DVD-ROM)

Product Details

  • Actors: Lori Petty, Lindsay Pulsipher, Jesse Haddock, William Samples, Ian A. Wallace
  • Directors: William Malone
  • Writers: Matt Greenberg, Mick Garris
  • Producers: Adam Goldworm, Andrew Deane, Ben Browning, Bo Altherr, John W. Hyde
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: December 12, 2006
  • Run Time: 55 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000GB5M2Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,480 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Masters of Horror: Fair Haired Child" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Madelyn Pryor VINE VOICE on January 18, 2007
Wow is about all I can say, because this movie is so good it left me speechless. I watch LOTS of horror movies, read horror books, research hauntings, and even read horror comics. It takes a lot to impress me because 99 times out of 100, I've seen it before. The Fair Haired Child blew my socks off.

Not only is this movie artfully crafted and skillfully directed, the special effects are killer. Some scenes I immediately watched again, just to catch every second of the chilling graphics. The storyline is demented, twisted, and oh so evil. The acting also doesn't disappoint in the least (who doesn't love Lori Petty?) The monster of the film is grotesque and Lovecraftian. Everything here is perfection. Normally with a running time of just under an hour -in this case, 55 minutes- you might feel cheated. However, in this case, everything about the movie is so spot on you don't mind the short time. Besides, the short time means you can watch it again right away, which is what I did.

I can't recommend this movie enough. It is trite and childish to say this deserves 8 out of 5 stars, but it does. If you are a horror fan at all, please, treat yourself to a viewing of this film. You will NOT be disappointed.

Highest possible recommendations to all horror movie buffs!!!!
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By K. Harris HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on December 6, 2006
I'm not quite sure that "House on Haunted Hill" and "FeardotCom" qualified William Malone to be called a Master of Horror in the Showtime anthology series--but we'll have that debate later. Considering the uneven quality of many of the episodes, the real surprise is that Malone surpasses many of the more acclaimed directors. "The Fair-Haired Child" is definitely a solid, if not great, episode in the infuriatingly inconsistent "Masters of Horror." In fact, "Child" (considering his resume) might be Malone's most effective work yet.

The tale begins with the abduction of a young girl. Trapped by a couple, led by a gloriously deranged Lori Petty, she is locked in their basement with another child. Forming a tentative friendship with the mute boy, she eventually learns that they will be involved in some sort of ritual to bring the couple's deceased child back to life. Let's just say that they made a pact with the devil that involves child sacrifice and a rather unpleasant beastie.

The mood and atmosphere of "Child" are genuinely creepy, the performances good, and the effects are nice. The spooky ambiance and brisk pace distinguish this tale from some of the others. This certainly isn't a groundbreaking work, though. You've seen elements of this story in many other films. However, it is put together with confidence and competence. I enjoyed "The Fair-Haired Child," and would rate it at 3 1/2 star if possible. Not the best the show had to offer--but far, far, far from the worst. KGHarris, 12/06.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By The Movie Guy on September 10, 2010
This is ANOTHER FREAK IN THE BASEMENT STORY with a twist. Tara is an outcast in her school. She is stalked, hit by a van and kidnapped. She is eventually placed in the basement and has to fight off the freak son. This is not how we want to remember Lori Petty. No bad language, sex, and very brief Polaroid nudity. Decent show, but not the best from Masters of Horror.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Molly Celaschi on January 30, 2007
Distraught father Anton and mother Judith (played by Lori Petty of Tank Girl fame) try to resurrect their dead son by sacrificing a young girl to a demon.

The film opens with young Tara being teased in school, riding her bike home, then getting kidnapped by a man in a van. I could only imagine the fears this scene would conjure up in any parent. After Tara wakes up, she tries to call her mom for help explaining that she has been drugged, kidnapped, and hospitalized in another state to which her mom casually replies, "Can I call you back later?" Malone directs a surprisingly restrained tale of suffering considering his previous outings included, which was oddly gratuitous and devoid of meaning. Fair-Haired Child is a touching story of a mother so heartbroken she is pushed to desperate lengths, a rebellious teen that betrays the ones that love him, and a kidnapped girl that no one notices is missing. The story is a simple one with a nice twist ending and pleasantly reminded me of the old Twilight Zone series.

The mood and atmosphere are great with many scenes set to classical music. There are black & white scenes that represent the dark doings of the parents and the little blonde girl looking up from the bloody bathtub through the hole in the basement looks like a lost Alice after falling through the rabbit hole.

On a side note, I thought it a curious gesture to add Malone to the list of "Masters of Horror". He did a few low budget creature flicks, followed by the good House on Haunted Hill remake, which was followed by the very bad. I think this TV episode is one of the highlights of his resume now.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on May 2, 2011
This isn't bad. It isn't good. It just isn't much of anything. When you look at the director Malone's history, there's really nothing that sticks out as being exceptional and this is more of the same.

Here's the scoop. A young girl who is an outsider at school (a point which seems to have no baring on the story) is kidnapped, drugged and wakes up in a basement. She finds she has a male roommate who is hanging from a noose. She rescues him and the two set out to try and escape. She soon realizes he's integral to the problem in that mom and dad need to kill 12 girls to bring sonny permanently back to life after an accidental drowning. She's the 12th victim.

This is OK. Laurie Petty does a fine job as the mom. I didn't much care for dad's performance and the two young folk do a decent job in their rolls. The creature that sonny transforms into is genuinely creepy and is the highlight of the proceedings. Somehow this all seemed too familiar and the ending was just so-so. The camerawork, editing, sound and directing aren't bad, but they don't aspire to any new heights.

At a merciful 55 minutes long it won't tax your patience but don't approach this as being anything more than a mild diversion.
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