Nightstalker (1979)

aka Don’t Go Near the Park
Article 4675 by Dave Sindelar
Date: 11-8-2014
Directed by Lawrence David Foldes
Featuring Aldo Ray, Meeno Peluce, Tammy Taylor
Country: USA
What it is: You got me.

Two prehistoric people, condemned to perpetually die without becoming dead, survive into the modern age by acts of cannibalism on runaways. They attempt to gain eternal life by having the male mate with a human to create a child that can be sacrificed towards that end. Then it gets confusing.

You know, there’s something to be said for a movie that simply can’t be scoped out, and this is one of them. I never knew where it was going or what was going to happen next. The trouble is, I’m not sure whether the creative powers-that-be on this one knew that either, or whether they simply couldn’t be bothered or figured out how to tell the story in any coherent fashion. This is one of those movies that is packed with “Huh?” scenes – you know, those scenes where you have no idea why what is happening is happening. How did the girl get out of the burning van? Why did the woman decide to marry the strange man who she first meets after he sneaks into her house while she’s showering? How is the man able to perform cannibalism on a young child while managing not to get a drop of blood on his nice Sunday suit? And why does everyone scream at everything? Actually, I think I know the answer to the latter; movies often have lots of screaming in scenes where they’re trying to convince us that it’s really scary when it it really isn’t. That is probably, in a nutshell, the main reason the movie doesn’t work; as weird and sick as it is in spots, it’s never scary. On the other hand, those on the hunt for a really strange bad movie may have something worth checking out here.


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