Watched November 26, 2012
Starring: Deborah Harry, Christian Slater, William Hickey, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi, James Remar, Rae Dawn Chong, and Matthew Lawrence.
I have never seen any of the Tales from the
Darkside TV show, so I'm not sure how the movie compares. This one has lots of big horror names attached: Stephen King, George A. Romero. There were some nice twists but it didn't really hold together as a great movie.
It begins with Timmy (Matthew Lawrence) telling Betty (Deborah Harry) stories from a book to stall her from killing and cooking him.
The first story is about a bunch of college students. Bellingham (Steve Buscemi) and Andy (Christian Slater) are roommates and Bellingham has just bought a sarcophagus with an intact mummy inside. He rips it open and begins to unwrap the mummy with his bare hands, which totally kills the resale value, but he finds a ancient scroll in the belly of the mummy. Andy's best friend Lee (Robert Sedgwick) made his girlfriend Susan ( Julianne Moore) write a paper for him to win a scholarship that Bellingham wanted to win. Bellingham reads the scroll and the mummy comes to life. It kills Lee by pulling out his brains with a hook and then kills Susan by stabbing her and stuffing her with flowers. Andy figures this out, burns the scroll and forces Bellingham to move out. In the end it turns out Andy burned the wrong scroll, so Bellingham sends his mummy back to kill Andy. The supposed star power on this one doesn't make up for the lackluster plotline. I wanted to see Christian Slater making out with Julianne Moore until I figured out she was his sister.
The second story stars the awesome William Hickey as Drogan, a retired pharmaceutical magnate who is being terrorized by a cat. He hires Halston (David Johansen) to kill the cat. Drogan is convinced that the cat is on a revenge mission because his drug company killed 5,000 cats while testing a new medication. Halston thinks it's going to be no big deal and Drogan must be nuts. He spends the night trying to kill the cat but the cat keeps getting away. Finally the cat jumps down Halston's throat and kills him from the inside. On a previous Terrible Movie Night, a long time ago, I had seen a clip from this as a teaser, it was nice to put it into context. Drogan comes back to find Halston dead and the cat jumps out of Halston's dead mouth and then kills Drogan. Excellent cat acting, if there were animal Oscars I think this cat deserved one.
The third story is about a grotesque gargoyle. Failing artist Preston (James Remar) goes down to the bar where he is dumped by his rep. As he is leaving the bar a horrible gargoyle kills his friend but instead of killing Preston he has a request of him. The gargoyle says I won't kill you if you don't tell anyone that I exist. Preston makes the promise and runs away, pretty much immediately he runs into Carola (Rae Dawn Chong.) They hit it off and he takes her home. She moves in the next day which is pretty nuts. Preston doesn't tell anyone about the gargoyle by he draws it constantly. Jump to 10 years later, they're married with two kids and they're living in his same run down artist's loft. The best line in the whole movie is when they're reminiscing about how they met and one of their kids says "Is that the night that you thought dad was gonna rape you?" Preston breaks down and shows Carola a sculpture he made of the gargoyle. Carola responds with "You swore you would never tell." Then she turns into the gargoyle, and it's totally awesome. The two kids turn to into gross out but cute little gargoyles. Gargoyle Carola destroys Preston as she grabs her babies and flies away.
In the end I really wanted
Deborah Harry to eat Matthew Lawrence but he manages to escape and she's the one who ends up in the oven. I didn't expect the twist in the gargoyle story, so that one was the best in my opinion. It goes just seem like three episodes of a show jammed together to make a full length movie. I would skip the whole movie just watch the last story: Lover's vow and the part of the cat one where the cat jumps down David Johansen's throat.