April 3, 2012

Dead of Night (1945)



"An architect senses impending doom as his half-remembered recurring dream turns into reality. The guests at the country house encourage him to stay as they take turns telling supernatural tales."

Although a lot of people rave about "Dead of Night" being one of Britain's finest horror anthologies, I've never really thought much of it myself. Just because it was the first to link several short horror stories together doesn't make it the best, in my opinion, although it's quite entertaining in places if you are easily pleased.

Two of the five stories are very weak and there's a stupid comedy one involving two golfers which I loathe even more than the entirety of "Shaun of the Dead" so it must be bad. The best ones for me are the racing driver's tale and the story of the ventriloquist's dummy which has a life of its own although I've seen that one done better since as well.


"Dead of Night" isn't so much dated as it is simply a rather unsatisfying experience overall. The ending is particularly messy and then the final twist is just annoyingly predictable, but at least it ties the other stories together in a better way than a lot of the wraparounds on later anthologies.

I'm keeping this review short as I really don't like "Dead of Night" all that much. It's highly overrated (especially on the IMDb of course) and there isn't one single moment that's actually scary in it.

If you like "The Twilight Zone" TV series, you'll probably get something out of "Dead of Night" but, best of all, you can watch it for free on YouTube (in the video which I've posted above). I don't recommend this as a purchase or even a rental as it's just one of those average films which you can only watch once and will then forget about quite quickly.

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