Resident Demon (aka Lich) DVD Review
Written by Steve Pattee
DVD released by The Asylum
Tie her up. – Maggie
Written and directed by Billy Parish
2004, Region 1 (NTSC), 82 minutes, Rated R
DVD released on December 27th, 2005
Billy Parish as Chaz
Georgina Cobb as Alison
Samantha Klein as Maggie
Steve Siegel as Bill
Monica Huntington as Ginny
Corinne Decker as Susan
Hilliard Guess as John
Brian Barnhart as Gary
Nothing better than having a party to celebrate the purchase of a new home. That is the feeling of couple Chaz and Alison, as they decide to have a few people over for a little get-together. But there is a small problem.
It seems the previous resident was a witch. She killed herself in a bathtub filled with blood in some sort of attempt to live forever.
I’m done here.
Resident Demon is a mess.
Its original title was Lich. Dictionary.com defines a lich as “a dead body; a corpse.”
I spent seven seconds trying to think of something witty to parallel that with the movie, then moved on. Any more time spent on this film was time I wasn’t going to get back.
The writing is bad. Any time a main character — or any character, for that matter — talks to his or herself, it’s annoying. At one point, the main character is about to walk upstairs with his guests, when the doorbell rings. All of his guests have already arrived and headed upstairs without him. What does he do? He says, out loud, “Who could that be?” Note, he doesn’t yell it, as if someone within earshot will answer: “Hey! That’s probably Bob! I forgot to tell you I invited him.” No. He just says it to himself. This type of writing, guys and gals, makes me cringe. In addition to being lazy, you are implying your audience is stupid and has been paying no attention to the movie. Well, in this situation, that may very well have been the case.
Another problem with the film is it is just not original. The evil spirit transfers from person to person by touch. It was much more entertaining when I saw it a couple of years ago with the title of Fallen.
Am I being too hard on Demon? No. I’m fully aware there are no original ideas left, but if you are a low-budget filmmaker, you damn well better put an interesting spin on your movie to keep me entertained. Be it with an original take on a non-original movie, a great script or some novel special effects, I don’t care. Show me something I haven’t seen before — because chances are your acting is going to be sub-par and your video and/or audio quality is going to be even worse. But if you entertain me, I will overlook a lot of things.
Demon did not entertain me.
However, one thing saved this film from being a complete and utter disaster: Samantha Klein as Maggie.
In a sea of monotony, she was my lifeboat. Klein was more-than-believable as the dead witch’s sister, who escapes from an insane asylum to help the new tenants of her sister’s house. With her attractive girl-next-door looks, she comes across very well as a young woman harboring a secret and battling her own inner demons. Klein is the only reason why Demon doesn’t get an “F.”
There was also a cool effect involving a pole through the stomach—but I think that particular effect took up the entire effects budget because it was the only standout.
I’m out of words for this.
Like the movie, my closer is weak.
Video and Audio:
As with most low-budget features, there is some grain in the 4:3 OAR presentation, particularly in the darker shots. There is nothing worth writing about here.
Like the video, the audio is pretty standard. Every time Chaz talked to himself, it was easily understood. Normally this would be a good thing, but in this case it is certainly debatable.
And I’m good with that. For me, as a reviewer, sometimes less is more.
Simply avoid this until Samantha Klein makes it big, then give it a whirl to see her roots.