February 4, 2002

Night Shadow (1989)

"Alex is an up and coming TV journalist, but travels to her home town for a vacation because she has insecurities about her chosen career. A mass murdering werewolf follows her from L.A to Danford. We see her kickboxer brother and her semi-boyfriend, the Sheriff, puzzle over the recent spluge of murders, fight and then kill the man-wolf."

It seems I was cursed with blandness as I watched probably the most uninspired werewolf movie ever made known as "Night Shadow". It's only real claim to fame nowadays is that it stars a mulletted Kato Kaelin from the O.J. Simpson trial and really that isn't enough to make it interesting to anybody who, like me, doesn't even know who Kato Kaelin or O.J. Simpson are anyway.

The start of "Night Shadow" had such insipid and incongruous background music that I wondered if this would even be a horror movie at all. It was even worse than porn film music! But I persevered just to see if it was some kind of comedic in-joke from the director. It wasn't. Neither the music or the overall sound quality improved at all.

In fact, everything was all very, very below average. It's supposed to be a werewolf film yet not once does the word "werewolf" even get mentioned as far as I remember. Certainly there are no standard werewolfy things like torturous moonlit transformations, howling or being shot by silver bullets. FFS, the werewolf eventually gets killed by being run over in a car!

The werewolf itself just looks like a someone with a giant furry carpet thrown over them and is probably the most unconvincing lycanthrope I've seen outside of "The Beast of Bray Road". Not that you'll see much of it anyway as the padded middle section of the film is enough to make you switch it off with boredom long before the denouement where everything is predictably revealed.

I hate to use the word "boring" as it really doesn't tell anyone a lot, but if a film deserved to be labelled with just one word then "boring" sums up "Night Shadow" perfectly.

There's nothing scary, the gore is less than you'd get in a Sunday afternoon TV movie, and there's nothing sexy either. Brenda Vance, the girl who plays the heroine Alex Jung, is pretty in a 1980s' kind of way (well, it was made in 1989!) but she's wasted in the film anyway. Laura Graham who plays Beth had the best performance though as it really takes some guts to act the part of a pretty girl when you are as plain as she is.

I'm rating it as 1 out of 10. It only gets that for the crappy kung-fu scene and Kato Kaelin's awful mullet (which I shouldn't laugh about at all with the state of my own hair at the moment).

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