The widow Leslie Doyle has just lost her husband and moves with her teenage son Jonathan and her young daughter Jamie to a mortuary in a small town in California that she has bought with the intention of starting a new business, practicing her knowledge as mortician. When they arrive, Leslie realizes that she was lured by the former owner, Elliot, and that the decrepit Fowler Brothers Funeral Home was completely abandoned and with problem with the septic sewer. While Leslie tries to improve and clean the place and start embalming corpses, Jonathan is informed about the legend of Bobby Fowler, the deformed son of the Fowlers. Meanwhile a weird substance attacks people, transforming them in zombies. —IMDb
Though he has worked in the horror and dark fantasy genres for more than two decades, producer-writer-director Tobe Hooper’s significant contributions can all be traced to just two films: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) and Poltergeist (1982). Though produced under very different circumstances — the former was an ultra-low-budget exploitation potboiler while the latter was a major studio spectacular — both films were major commercial successes that reflected the zeitgeist of their day. Surprisingly, neither had quite the salutary effect on Hooper’s career as one might have expected. The filmmaker’s current viability, such as it is, has resulted from a canny shift to creating, producing and directing genre projects for the small screen. A popular artist who once helped set trends in entertainment evolved over time into a smooth craftsman striving to ride the wave of his genre’s acceptance into the mainstream.
The Austin, Texas native was first bitten by the… read more
Starts out as a haunted house mystery, turns into a Halloween-like slasher, then becomes a typical zombie movie, which would be fine, but there is a sense that the writers don't really care about tying each element of the plot together, and the general effect is sluggish and rather tiresome. Hooper's use of space is effective, but the same can be said of the far superior Toolbox Murders, and there's none of the "baroque" Bava-inspired adornments that usually make even his most controversial films fascinating to look at.