Superstition (1982)

aka The Witch
Article 4950 by Dave Sindelar
Date: 10-7-2015
Directed by James W. Roberson
Featuring James Houghton, Albert Salmi, Lynn Carlin
Country: Canada
What it is: Mishmash of horror genres

A minister and his family move into a house that has been the site of several horrible deaths. Does the evil emanate from the house itself, from the nearby pond, or from a strange little girl who unexpectedly appears?

Given that the alternate title gives away one of the plot points, I don’t think I’m giving away a whole lot when I say the cause of the horror is a curse from a witch that was executed three hundred years earlier. Still, any three-hundred-year-old witch who is savvy enough to use a microwave oven as an instrument of murder is a force to be reckoned with. Yes, there’s a fair amount of cliches in this one, but sometimes they’re assembled in odd and unexpected ways, and this leaves the movie with an odd vibe that adds a bit to the atmosphere of the movie. This somewhat compensates for the fact that the movie doesn’t seem particularly well-directed at times, the budget is quite low, and the dialogue is occasionally laughable. Some of the gory deaths are rather unusual and clearly betray a supernatural force at work. The movie has its fair share of faults, but it’s one that I actually rather enjoyed watching; even the fake scares didn’t really bother me. Maybe it just caught me on a good night, but I think this one more or less works.


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