Like my book reviews site, these are movie reviews I write for entertainment purposes only. These are just my reviews and my opinions. They are not endorsed by Blogger or any movie studios or anyone else. So there. I borrowed my scoring system from the Metacritic site, which does not imply an endorsement from them, although I think they do have a very nice website. I convert the 1-100 scores into 1-4 stars, essentially it works like this:

1 star = 25 points
2 stars = 50 points
3 stars = 75 points
4 stars = 100 points

And then if something falls about halfway between, then I'll give it an added half-star.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Night Visitor

You know what happens when you can't sleep?  You end up watching a crappy late-night movie like 1989's "Night Visitor."  Or an infomercial with Tom Bosley.  Actually the latter might be better.

The movie starts off with a premise similar to Hitchcock's "Rear Window" or the later "Disturbia."  Young Billy is using a telescope to spy on his sexy new neighbor Lisa.  It seems that Lisa has a new beau over every night.  But when Billy tells his friends and invites them over for some group peeping, Lisa chooses that night to go to bed alone.

Desperate to get some proof, Billy climbs up to Lisa's window the next night only to witness Lisa's murder.  He's nearly killed by a dude in a black robe and goat mask.  In the struggle, Billy pulls off the mask to reveal the face of his weird history teacher Mr. Willard.  In an ironic twist just that day or so Mr. Willard had Billy suspended from school for attaching a whoopee cushion and stink bombs to his chair, which was actually committed by Billy's friend Sam Loomis--not the Sam Loomis from the "Halloween" movies though.

Anyway, the police don't believe Billy because he has no proof and a reputation for telling fibs.  So in desperation, Billy goes to see Mr. Devereaux (Elliott Gould) a retired police detective for help.

Then the movie just goes off the rails with Satanism, goofy sidekicks, and some Buffalo Bill-type stuff going on in the basement, though the movie predates the film version of "Silence of the Lambs."

Anyway, the most serious problem other than terrible acting from generally a bunch of no-names, is the movie never strikes a consistent tone.  It's one of those films that can't decide if it wants to be funny or serious and so winds up trying to do both and failing miserably.  Characters like Billy's mom, Sam Loomis, and the police detectives are brought in but never effectively used.  This is especially true for the cops, who didn't seem to have any involvement in the endgame after a nonsensical meeting with some kind of shrink about Satanism.

This is purely late-night B-movie fare and on that purely cheesy level it's fine.  But after the first half hour or so you might want to flip over to that Tom Bosley infomercial.

That is all.

My score:  25/100 (1 star)

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