The Incubus DVD Review
Written by Peter West "Danger Seeker"
DVD released by Elite Entertainment
Directed by John Hough
Writing by George Franklin
1981, Region 1 (NTSC), 93 minutes, Rated R
DVD released on August 27th, 2002
John Cassavetes as Dr. Sam Cordell
John Ireland as Hank Walden
Kerrie Keane as Laura Kincaid
Helen Hughes as Agatha Galen
Erin Flannery as Jenny Cordell
Duncan McIntosh as Tim Galen
The Incubus: A demon who can change form to service both male and female witches...
In the New England town of Galen (so what if the vehicles in the movie all have Wisconsin license plates on them), a young couple is camping out at a local pond. The girl hides from the boyfriend in a old shack after a little spat. Then out of the shadows she is dragged and sexually assaulted. (Now why this happens I do not know, her and the boy were not having pre-marital sex!) Hearing her screams, the boyfriend races to save her. He gets hit by a board with a nail to the head for his troubles. A swimmer in the pond finds the boy's body floating the next day. Help arrives and the girl miraculously lives! Minus her uterus, which has been destroyed by the penetration of the Incubus' massive member.
Dr. Sam Cordell (played by outstanding actor John Cassavetes) is baffled by who or what could have caused such internal injuries. Police Chief Hank Walden (John Ireland) concludes the girl was raped my a gang of maniacs! Meanwhile Cordell's daughter Jenny is having her own problems with her boyfriend, Tim Galen, who is being tortured by horrible nightmares! Galen's nightmare last night coincided with the time the attack occurred!
The town librarian is the next victim. This time, unlike the first attack where it was a dry intercourse leaving no sperm, the act is completed leaving, as the doctor says, "an incredible amount of sperm." With this second attack the media's attention is growing and reporter Laura Kincaid (Kerrie Keane) soon finds herself the focus of a weird attraction by Dr. Cordell. The death toll mounts as an entire family is murdered (incuding a poor young girl in a wheelchair.) Not even the family dog is safe from the Incubus!
With every killing, young Tim's nightmares grow more intense until he finally confesses he may have a part in the murders to Jenny. Reporter Kincaid discovers similar murders occured 30 years earlier without resolution. Is this a killer returning to the scene three decades later? Or is Tim, who has been cleared by a blood test of his sperm, really connected to the murders? The end of the movie is truly shocking and original!
As you can see, I had a little fun with this review. Don't let that detract you from purchasing it! This is a great thriller with gothic overtones and was quite controversial in 1981. This movie has gore, nudity, and a great looking killer! Once again, Elite Entertainment gives us another winner. The late '70s and early '80s were a great time for Canadian horror films. I sure am glad Elite found this one for us!
Video and Audio:
Presented in a 16 x 9 enhanced 1.85:1 widescreen, The Incubus looks as good as when it hit the screens 21 years ago. Elite has done another great job on what looks to be a fairly well cared for master. This was not a big budget movie to begin with dollar-wise. It is far superior to the VHS version I saw 20 years ago!
The soundtrack is a Dolby Digital mono, very acceptable in quality! The composer does in the beginning appear to rip a little off from Jaws with some of the build up to the first killing. Overall the movie has a very good music leading up to most key scenes!
All that is included is a trailer. Not nearly as good shape as the movie in quality, the trailer does provide the necessary historical reference. Personally, I feel if possible, all DVD releases should include the trailer! Just having one is enough for me to rate an otherwise barebones DVD higher!
Want to comment on this review? Head over to the Horrortalk Review Forum.