Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Movie Review: Evilspeak (1981)

Evilspeak is a forgotten horror movie from 1981. It stars Clint Howard as Cadet Stanley Coopersmith, who summons Satan through a computer after finding a . If you think Clint Howard is an unlikely lead, you're right -- but Coopersmith is an unlikely Satanist, so the role is perfect for him.

While clearly influenced by movies like The Omen and Damien: Omen II, Evilspeak is just as clearly a product of the Digital Age. It reminded me a little of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode where they scan an old text and accidentally release a demon into the network.

But with more pigs.

I may or may not have been incapable of watching the first five minutes of the movie because of a laughing fit triggered by mishearing "Sacrifice!" as "Suck an ass!" 🤣

Such a child!

I wasn't expecting anything when we sat down to watch Evilspeak. We've been through so many modern horror films that we decided to just start picking random old movies to see how bad they are. I'm worried that Evilspeak may have set the bar too high for movies to come...

Yes, there are bad wigs and tits in the first five minutes of the film. ("Suck an ass!") I promise it gets better from there, though.

I was actually impressed with Evilspeak's diversity. (I know, I don't say that much in reviews.) You'd forgive it for being a little whitewashed, being set in a military academy, but it's not. Not only are there people of colour in perfectly respectable roles, Coopersmith is a total dweeb (I can say that, being a dweeb myself.) and there are chubby people about, too. There is a gay slur, which is disappointing, but considering the time Evilspeak was made, it could have been a lot worse.

The computer graphics are exactly as clunky as you'd expect from a 1981 movie. They get pretty trippy as Richard Moll's evil Father Esteban gains control of Coopersmith's er... borrowed? computer. Honestly, though? Yeah, it's funky as shit, but it works. Maybe it's because it's so Eighties, or maybe it's just a perfect blend of evil and technology (I'm not going to ask if such a thing exists 'cause, you know, Facebook.) but the graphics fit the movie perfectly.

This is one of those "video nasties" that Britain went nuts over in the Eighties. It is a little gory, but nothing compared to what we're used to these days. Still, the combination of devil-worship and intestines was just too much for Britain's nanny state.

(I'm thinking we need to have some kind of video nasty marathon, with introductions from Beast-man himself... what'd'ya think?)

There's a touch of Carrie White in Stanley Coopersmith. Like Carrie, you're with him when he decides to get his revenge. I think all us dweebs can agree that the Bubba Caldwells (Don Stark) of the world get away douchebaggery far too often. If you could call down an army of ravenous pigs to gnaw on your tormentors, then burn the place down, wouldn't you?

Just me? Hmm. I might need to rethink my morals. I mean... my favourite part of the film is when a nail flies out of Jesus's palm to kill the priest so... yeah.

Evilspeak is a bloody fun movie (and I mean that in both senses of the word.) It kept my attention -- minus a few minutes when I had to look away because I can't handle animals being injured -- and I would watch it again. And, honestly, I'd summon all kinds of evil, too, if someone did something to my dog.

If you've seen Evilspeak -- or, if you're interested in a video nasty marathon -- let me know. Also, get in touch if you've got a different opinion of this movie (or any movie we review). Until next time, thanks for stopping by.

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