Director Robert Fuest creates an atmosphere of nihilism and dread in this classic 70s horror film starring the brawny brow Ernest Borgnine as Jonathon Corbis/Satan, Eddie Albert as Dr. Sam Richards, Ida Lupino as Mrs Preston, William Shatner as Mark Preston, Keenan Wynn as Sheriff Owens, Tom Skerritt as Tom Preston, Joan Prather as Julie Preston, Woody Chambliss as John and a young John Travolta as Danny.
Set in the American rural landscape a group of Satanists create a legion of eyeless followers who worship a goat headed devil, and threaten to banish all who disobey to dwell inside a large blown glass bottle, amidst perpetual rain of the woes and tortures of hell upon them. This ‘rain’ has the ability to melt it’s victims, as if they were made out of play-doh!
The Preston family has been broken apart by the cult, some of the remaining family members go on a mission to destroy the cult, and force their way directly into the pits of this hellish nightmare to wreak revenge upon Mr Goat Head and his legion of empty eye socket devotees.
Perhaps considered laughable at the time, I saw the theatrical release at my local drive in on Long Island, and am not afraid to admit that I was scared shitless by the images of the no eyed victims. Even John Revolta who had just come off the Welcome Back Kotter craze appeared truly terrifying to me at the time. Still does for different reasons not mentioned here…
I just love this film, for it’s unique, and utterly creepy manifest, with it’s great cast and an unforgiving campiness that makes it memorable and fun to watch. Borgnine has a streak of sardonic charm in many of his acting roles, so seeing him don the goat horns and fiendish snout is precious!
Happy Trailers-‘come in out of the rain’-MonsterGirl