It was sad watching the awesomeness of early to mid-80s horror become the crap that flooded the direct-to-video market at the end of the decade and led to the shit of the early 90s. It’s even more depressing when you see evidence that it poisoned trippy Euro-horror as well. Just the fact that Ghosthouse and Witchery, now slapped together on one Blu-ray for loser 80s horror completists like myself, were marketed as Evil Dead 3 & 4 in Europe is an insult to both Euro horror and Evil Dead.
The pure joy of Italian horror is that it usually makes no fricking sense but bombards you with insane sequences and visuals that scar you to scabbing and then scratch that horror itch until you bleed with relief.
Ghosthouse tries to be that bizarre. It really does. A couple hears a radio message of what sounds like a murder so they follow the signal to a creepy old house, where they meet a brother and sister that sound like the people being murdered on the recording of the radio message! The group decides to set up a stakeout by the house to figure out what the hell is going on.
There’s a little girl ghost with a scary clown doll (which appears to be the cousin of the Poltergeist clown). There’s a killer caretaker with an axe. There’s a Doberman ghost. A killer fan blade. A mausoleum. A guillotine. A vat of what looks like spooge. And a grim reaper corpse that drips worms (my favorite part).
Unfortunately, none of it manages to be frightening and the movie drags out to what feels like twice its length. And the shocker ending, which involves a store window display and a bus, takes 80s horror to a level of cheese from which there was no bouncing back.
David Hasselhoff and his virgin girlfriend are researching witchcraft at an old mansion on a deserted island. Real estate agents bring Linda Blair (pregnant and with no apparent husband) and her parents to the island to see the place, which they’re hoping to buy and make into a hotel.
One by one, people start getting sucked into a spinning red vortex of (e)special(ly bad) effects, where they are tortured by an old witch (who looks more like an over-the-hill drag queen) and her coven.
The death scenes are pretty cool, as is the guy with the fucked up mouth who rapes the virgin in her dreams.
But the whole purpose of this mess of a movie seems to be to re-possess Linda Blair for the last few minutes so she can show she’s the queen of 80s horror hair.