Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Equinox (1970).

The Scoop:
This student film (and believe me, it shows) has gone on to become an underground classic. A group of stupid college students go into the woods and uncover a book of spells that brings about all sorts of supernatural trouble. Sound familiar?

Despite the extreme technical ineptitude, the story is excellent (borrowed liberally by Sam Raimi and put to better use for "The Evil Dead" and "The Evil Dead 2"), the special effects are good and some successful careers were launched here. Most notable among them is special effects supervisor Dennis Muren, who has gone on to win nine Oscars designing the effects for James Cameron's "Terminator 2" (1991) and George Lucas' "Star Wars" movies. Also, the assistant cameraman is future actor Ed Begley, Jr., and one of the stars is Frank Bonner, who later starred in "WKRP in Cincinnati."

Shot in 1967 by writer/director Jack Woods, this sat on the shelf for three years until it was purchased by producer Jack Harris, who reshot some scenes and released it.

There's some primo bad movie shenanigans going on with this one. Check it out.

Best Line:
"Your book! You have to take it!"

Side Note:
The sound effect for the transitions was lifted from "Earth vs. the Flying Saucers." Also, Forrest J. Ackerman turns up in a cameo as the voice on the tape recorder.

Companion Viewing:
The "Evil Dead" trilogy and "The Blair Witch Project" (1999).

Horror Movie a Day.

Take a Look:
The trailer:

A compilation of stop motion effects from the film:

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