Angela is having a party…Are you invited?
If so, you should RSVP a yes. Night of the Demons is a joy.
Bookended with a wraparound that’d put 90% of anthologies to shame, it cheekily plays with Devil’s Night paranoia surrounding candy tampering, about which University of Delaware criminology professor Joel Best says “I have yet to find of a report of an incident where a child was killed or seriously injured by a contaminated treat picked up in the course of trick-or-treating,”
Still, candy tampering is a scare that’s passed down through the ages, regardless of whether a razor blade apple would be the best vector for sick mischief given kids’ antipathy to healthy fruit when they’re expecting tasty candy.
In Night of the Demons, it’s used wholly incidentally, as an old man on whom none of the rest of the tale depends decides to exact revenge on good-for-nothin’ no-good prankster kids via blades (no spoilers here, promise).
But he’s merely a conduit to introduce viewers to the principals, a fun lot who expand the film beyond your standard “dumb teens partying in an abandoned house” boilerplate.
Night of the Demons has some terrific characters, most notably an abusive sexist lunk-head, the appropriately-handled “Stooge,” who resembles a WWE jobber and whose face is ripped off in glorious fashion, to the unforgettable Linnea Quigley as Suzanne, a sexually voracious rump-shower.
And then there’s Angela. Yes, Angela from the poster.
She’s an elegant goth girl whose idea to liven up the Halloween party proceedings by holding a seance, is what conjures up the demons eventually responsible for killing most of the party-goers. Whoops.
Night of the Demons is very silly, yet undeniably charming and the opener is one for the ages…
Its un-PC 80s repartee is dynamite, plus the sexual set-pieces unforgettable.
Shout Factory’s got a special collectors’ edition Blu-ray.
***1/2 (out of 5)
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