976-EVIL Film Details
Overview: People who dial 976-EVIL receive supernatural powers and turn into satanic killers.
Tagline: People who dial 976-EVIL receive supernatural powers and turn into satanic killers.
Review: 976-Evil starts with a dodgy game of cards where Leonard Johnson whose nickname is Spike (Patrick O’Bryan) loses his Harley to local thug Marcus (J.J. Cohen) & his gang, Spike refuses to hand his bike over & says he will have the monetary equivalent tomorrow. Back home Spike finds an advertisement for something called a ‘Horrorscope’ which you have to phone 976 Evil to hear your horoscope, Spike decides to give it a go & the resultant advice turns out to be the solution to him keeping his Harley. Spike is hooked but as he continues to phone the number the messages become more menacing, meanwhile Spikes nerdy cousin Hoax (Stephen Geoffreys) finds the card & also decides to phone the number which results in advice about how to pick a good looking bird up. Much to Hoax’s surprise it works a treat but thug Marcus & his gang show up & ruins things, after this somewhat embarrassing & humiliating experience Hoax continues to phone the number but receives advice on Satanic rituals & the more Hoax calls 976 Evil the gates of hell begin to open in Hoax’s house & he becomes possessed by evil forces which turn him into a brutal Demonic killer… Directed by Robert Englund I personally thought 976-Evil was a decent time waster & a pretty watchable horror film. The script by Brian Helgeland & Rhet Topham moves along at a fair pace although it does drag in a couple of places & it does take itself a little seriously at times although to it’s credit it is something a bit different, I mean it doesn’t always work brilliantly but at least I didn’t sit there thinking I’d seen it all before already like so many horror films & I wasn’t bored either. Most of the character’s are actually quite likable & well fleshed out except Hoax’s mum Lucy (Sandy Dennis) who is awful as an overbearing religious fanatic. The story itself is fairly engaging & entertaining although it perhaps could have done more with the basic premise than it did & two early death scenes seem so unconnected & come & go so quickly they could almost be from another film. 976-Evil isn’t a masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination but it’s better than a lot of horror films out there & it has a certain something about it that manages to distinguish it from the crowd. Director Englund is far better known to horror film audiences the world over as the child murderer Freddy Krueger from A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) & it’s numerous subsequent sequels. 976-Evil was Englund’s first theatrical feature & after a bit of a battering from the critics he has only just completed his second directorial effort Killer Pad (2007) which is currently in post-production. He does a more than acceptable job actually despite not being able to resist those Freddy Krueger inspired one-liners & puns towards the end (although there is a cool one involving a game of cards & two ripped out hearts), the film is pretty stylish, well made & uses lots of neon lighting to give it a distinctive look & feel. Generally speaking it’s low on proper scares but it has that 80’s horror film vibe about it, there’s also some decent gore. Someone has their hand cut off with a knife, there is a scene of a couple of cats feeding on someone’s intestine’s, there are ripped out hearts, slashed faces, spurting blood, someone is impaled on a neon lit sign (more neon?) & people burnt alive. Technically 976-Evil is surprisingly good, the special effects are fine, the cinematography & lighting is cool & it’s well made throughout. The acting is also pretty good, except the terrible Sandy Dennis & her almost as terrible hair-dos. 976-Evil isn’t the greatest film ever made but it’s a decent effort that I enjoyed watching, it won’t be the best horror film you’ve ever watched but I doubt it’ll be the worst either. Personally I think it’s well worth a watch if you can find a copy going cheap somewhere or catch it on late-night cable TV. It spawned the sequel 976-Evil 2: The Astral Factor (1991) which I will be watching & reviewing within the next week or so…
Country: United States
Duration: 92 min
Genre: Comedy, Horror
Also known as: 976-EVIL,La ligne du diable,Fandens til nummer,Llamada siniestra,Телефон дьявола,Força Demoníaca,La llamada del diablo,Llamadas satánicas,976 – Телефон за ада,Maníaco nocturno,976 – A Sátán hívószáma,Puhelu helvetistä,976 – Chiamata per il diavolo,Dial the Devil,ホラー・スコープ,Telefon do piekła,976 – El teléfono del infierno,Super Evil,Horrorscope