I was hoping to close out my werewolf wingding with a bang. It looks like I'll have to settle for a whimper. Not that I expected 1978's Deathmoon to live up to its gnarly cover art (all that's missing is a holographic image and an A-Pix logo). This isn't the worst werewolf flick that I've ever seen. It's not even the worst werewolf flick that I've seen in the past month, but it leaves much to be desired. The workaday storyline is about as complex as the mating habits of the North American sand fly. To be honest, I need to brush up on my trivia where the order Diptera is concerned. What, you've never reflected on an insect's mating habits? I can't control how I feel when I see two aphids copulating.
"Dat mesothorax!" I screamed. Did the other tourists on the trail notice that I was perfervid in the throes of lechery? Whoa, sorry. I think I've had one too many bottles of Sprite. That doesn't change the fact that Deathmoon is run-of-the-mill foodstuff for lenient cinephiles. It will do fine if you simply want to watch...something. I was doubly disappointed because this old-fashioned creature feature was produced for the tube. A made-for-TV horror film from the 70's? Count me in! Robert Foxworth plays Jason, a tightly wound businessman who takes a vacation on the advice of his psychiatrist. He skedaddles to Hawaii, the birthplace of his ancestors. Unbeknownst to our soon-to-be furball friend, his genealogy has been stricken with a voodoo curse.
Apart from a couple of useless subplots, Deathmoon is barebones. The stalk sequences are there to separate twinklings of character development. Thankfully, the cast is up to the challenge. I didn't mind Jason, but I did mind the static shots of him sunbathing/flirting/drinking. The script spends an inordinate amount of time on his cocksure dalliance with a blonde stranger. I'd give the whole charade a zero on the "chemistry" meter. There is also a ridiculous bit involving a petty hotel thief that goes absolutely fucking nowhere. How Deathmoon reaches 90 minutes is beyond me. And yet, I wasn't completely disinterested in the proceedings. Why?
Hell if I know! I was curious to find out how Jason planned on curing his lycanthropy. As it turns out (don't worry; this isn't a sizeable spoiler), he ignores his pesky problem and enjoys a romantic getaway. Okey-dokey? On the monster front, we are treated to Universal-style make-up effects, including a lap-dissolve. I approve. Obviously, there isn't a drop of blood. I can accept the lack of gore, though. I cannot accept the innumerable lapses in logic. A full moon each night over the span of a week? Did the earth stop rotating? I mean, what the shit? I'm not comfortable recommending Deathmoon to genre die-hards. While I enjoyed it to a certain extent, it doesn't exactly stand out in a hairy crowd. Robert Z'Dar says, "Eh."
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 11:45 PM