867-5309 will always be the only phone number worth remembering in the 8os. In 1988, Robert Englund decided to direct his own horror film. And what a nightmare it is. I can never remember 976-EVIL until I re-watch it. In fact, when I went to save the file I was writing THIS blog on, I discovered I had begun writing a blog for it over a year ago. Which means I watched it just over a year ago. I don’t remember any of that….
Things start off so promising, with creepy, desolate streets and 80s neon lighting, which turns out to be the highlight of the movie. As usual, Sandy Dennis plays a weirdo (she’s like Karen Black in that way). The lead is Stephen Geoffreys, the freako kid who played Evil Ed in the original Fright Night then went on to star in hardcore gay porn. Ironically, the first time we see him here, he’s surrounded by pussies! And to be even more ironic, he acts excited when it starts raining fish around his house.
So anyway, Sandy Dennis is a religious loony mother, Geoffreys is her socially awkward son, and he has a sexy hot leather boy biker cousin named Spike. Spike has a girlfriend, who would go on to appear in A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: Freddy’s Dead. Spike’s poker playing buddies are one big queer looking bunch of pretty boys. One dude even has a bleach streak and wears a George Michael hat like in his “Monkey” video. I looked just like this kid when I went clubbing in the late 80s.
Basically, 976-Evil is the Psychic Evil Friends Network. Call the line, get a bad horrorscope, and then die. There’s nothing scary about this movie. Geoffreys gets bullied, eventually calls 976-Evil, starts worshipping Satan, turns into a demon, and gets back at all those who treated him bad. I’m no demon sympathizer, so I wasn’t feeling it.
The only thing worse than 90s horror movies are 90s sequels to bad late 80s horror movies. 976-EVIL 2 sees the return of Spike, looking very hot in leather. He’s trying to help some chick who is having premonitions of people being murdered by the dean of her school. Now the dean is in jail and astral projecting to continue committing murders. This movie is so fricking bad!
So the dean sort of gets gnarly/zombie-like in the face as he chases this blonde bimbo for an hour and a half. Then at the end, Spike comes to help her and does this fricking magical neon aura thing before shooting into the sky. WTF? It just isn’t Xanadu without Olivia.
Robert Englund has nothing to do with this movie, but he is referenced when Spike goes to an occult shop and the woman working there tells him he looks like a young Freddy Krueger. Spike, in turn, tells her she looks like Elvira on steroids. Other highlights include Spike being attacked by a kitchen and Phillip McKeon as a cop (those poor McKeon kids couldn’t shake the childhood star curse).
The real topper is when one chick gets drawn into her television by the dean and finds herself in the middle of It’s A Wonderful Life when she actually wanted to watch Night of the Living Dead. But when the cute little girl from the Christmas classic says “Look, Daddy. Every time you hear a bell, a zombie takes us to hell,” it turns into It’s a Wonderful Living Dead. Best moment in the entire franchise. Well, that and the homage to Xanadu….
Okay, so for those who question whether Stephen Geoffreys did porn, check out this picture below. Some rumors around the internet claim it’s his brother, not him, and that his brother ruined his career by doing gay porn because everyone thought it was him. You decide. And for more evidence, Google “Sam Ritter gay porn.” That’s his porn name. Or you could type Stephan Bordeaux. That’s his other porn name. Unless he has TWO brothers who look exactly like him. Check the results to see Sam in action. Nice butt.