Ruby (1977)

RUBY (1977)
Article 3723 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 10-9-2011
Posting Date: 10-24-2011
Directed by Curtis Harrington
Featuring Piper Laurie, Stuart Whitman, Roger Davis
Country: USA
What it is: Revenge from beyond the grave

A gangster is betrayed and killed by members of his own gang. Years later, the spirit of the dead gangster haunts a drive-in theater owned and operated by his former moll and which employs members from his own gang. They start dying one by one in horrible ways…

After her memorable performance as the mother in CARRIE, Piper Laurie made this rather muddled horror movie which tries to be a combination of the standard “revenge from beyond the grave” plot with touches from THE EXORCIST. The uneasy mixture of possession and bizarre murders never gels, partially because some crucial characters remain ciphers; the title character in particular seems to be a different person in every scene, and it’s really difficult to become involved in her story when she never comes across as a distinct person. Some of the murders are more goofy than scary, with the most memorable one involving a soda pop machine. I remember catching the movie many years ago, but all that stuck in my memory was the soda pop machine scene and the ineffectual ending. Watching it again, I didn’t find it any better, and found myself getting more enjoyment from the footage from ATTACK OF THE 50-FOOT WOMAN, the feature playing at the drive-in.

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