Night of Fear was actually banned on the grounds of indecency and obscenity and has been almost unobtainable for thirty years. The film’s style and storyline hark back to the style of Texas Chainsaw Massacre and The Last House on the Left despite the fact that Night of Fear was made a few years before. It’s a simple story of a young girl who stumbles onto to property of a rather insane psycho who keeps hundreds of blood-thirsty rats for pets. That’s really it but it’s the excellent performances, claustrophobic photography and a few “out there” scenes that make Night of Fear well worth watching. The moments involving the killer, a severed head, some rats and our heroine tied to a table are shocking to say the least and stronger than anything else being filmed at the time. Carla Hoogeveen is wonderful as the victim, her ever running and screaming performance once again recalls Marilyn Burns being chased by Leatherface in Texas Chainsaw Massacre. A special mention also has to go to the editing by Ray Alchin, its machine gun pacing, mixing in various images telling the story in a various non-linear fashion is exceptional. —digital-retribution.com
Terry Bourke (19 April 1940 – 2002) was an Australian filmmaker. He worked as a show business journalist, stuntman and production assistant in Hong Kong for a number of years before returning to Australia in 1971. He made several movies and also worked in television.
David Stratton described him as “a second-rate director”. Actor and writer Roger Ward called him:
A shifty but clever and cunning little character who did a lot of work. Some was good. However, the good was canceled out by his cavalier attitude to money (always other peoples’), his disrespect of his peers, and an almost obsessive jealousy of anyone else in the industry… To his credit, Terry had an uncanny ability to make a tiny creek in the suburbs of Sydney look like the back blocks of Vietnam. He could also carve a piece of cardboard, put lights behind it and shoot it with a title beneath, and those that saw it on the silver screen would swear it really was a Manhattan skyline. He could shoot beneath a doctored… read more
Feels like a mash up with TCM and a ritual Kenneth Anger might capture. The events that unfold are as generic as horror movies get but the lack of dialogue, non linear narrative, and bizarre editing makes for a very interesting ozplotation experiment in primal fears and single images. Worth seeing.