Something Creepy This Way Comes

on May 14, 2009 by Steve Simels
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Long-time readers may recall our discussion -- back in June of last year -- of the interesting 1965 Lovecraftian horror flick Dark Intruder.

To recap -- here's the plot, courtesy of The Bad Movie Report:

 

San Francisco, 1890: A series of gruesome murders attracts the attention of Brett Kingsford (Leslie Nielsen), a playboy detective with a secret crime lab, a library of occult tomes, and an invaluable dwarf assistant (Charles Bolender). His friend, Robert (Mark Richman), soon to be married to Evelyn (Judi Meredith), keeps having trance-outs at the oddest times, and looks to be a likely suspect -- especially since he knows the victims. However, the killer growls like a beast and kills with a set of murderous bestial claws, two attributes which Robert lacks. Long story short -- Robert had a deformed siamese twin which was separated at birth; now, it's not only killing everyone who knows of its existance in preparation for taking over Robert's body, but is also possibly the embodiment of an ancient Sumerian demon.

 

There's more to it, of course but what really makes the thing work -- apart from the fun of seeing a very young Nielsen in a straight role -- is a tremendous sense of atmosphere; veteran director Harvey Hart keeps the whole thing quite spookily fog bound, and there's a palpable sense of dread throughout. I saw it in the darkened vastness of the balcony of the Oritani Theater in Hackensack, New Jersey back in the day and it scared me witless.

 

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As I mentioned back in '08, I'd seen DI a few years earlier on an okay bootleg VHS and was pleasantly surprised that it held up pretty well. (Trivia note: Universal originally shot it as a TV series pilot for NBC, who passed, so the studio recycled it into a theatrical B-feature; the fact that it clocks in at just under an hour probably explains why there's never been an official video release despite a rather vocal cult following).

In any event, there was no DVD available at the time, but I promised to keep you guys posted. Well, thanks to the fine folks at Creepy Classics there's finally a more than serviceable disc of the film to be had; you can -- and I would say definitely should -- order it here. For (as they used to say at Mad) fifteen dollars -- cheap. And while you're there be sure to check out the Creepy Classics catalog -- you'll find lots more interesting and otherwise unavailable horror flicks to tempt your wallet.

You're welcome!

 

Tags: Dark Intruder, Creepy Classics, Leslie Nielsen, Charles Bolender, Mark Richman, Judi Meredith
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