the house by the cemetary (1981)

My involvement into Italian horror isn’t really too extensive. Most of the shit I remember are the old Giallo movies that we used to watch to see some skin and a bunch of old zombie movies that I don’t remember being any good. I do have a box set of DVDs in the shape of a coffin that are (zombie movies) about the living dead who turn out to be the Knights Templar and (I think) they might have been horny zombies but it’s been a long time since I looked at those and those might have involved a lot of mexican dirt weed but I wouldn’t know because I’ve never had any of that stuff. This was on the other day and I was (am) convalescing from a surgery so I had nothing better to do but try it out and….. well…. uh….. let’s see…….

I am NO HISTORIAN or LIBRARIAN or an owner of ARCANE KNOWLEDGE of the arts to Italian Cinema so I can’t at all speak to the merits of this thing but I’ll try and put some thoughts together. At least I can say I fucking tried, right? I will say that, early on, there’s a lingering woodsy shot that didn’t really give me the creeps so much as I thought it was cool and if I ever changed my site image I might try and use it against all copyright laws. Or is it Trademark? Or IP? I don’t know but – like I’ve alays said, no one really tells me anything and I don’t know shit, but here it is:

I’m a dude and I’m almost 50 but when I was a kid I had red hair and a pasty complexion, much like the girl in this picture, plus my dad’s parents were always on my ass about not doing things right and ensuring I didn’t bother anyone so I would think they were always lurking in the background with the Paddle of God in case I got out of line but that’s probably of no concern to anyone.

What’s this about? If you don’t know, like I did not, it goes something like this:

A man, woman and their horribly dubbed kid move from New York to a dilapidated house out in the trees in Massachusetts so the man can research something involving someone named Freudstein. Inside the house is a tomb in the ground in the hallway with the name Freudstein carved into it and outside and around the house are gravestones, a little ghost girl and some sort of ghost maternal figure. Attached to the kitchen is a basement that goes straight to hell. Or the lab or Freudstein where he skinned and killed women and children. Or a dark cavernous place where ONE unkillable bat lives. Or The Cellar Where Two Orange Eyes Glow So Don’t Go Down There For Fuck’s Sake Kid!! Or lastly, the place where a young lady should never go because she might get her head sliced off by a killer with a woman’s hand even though – well – ahem.

How’s that for a plot summary?

Like I said, I don’t know this or that or even shit about much of these things so what else did I notice?

The lead wears a trench coat a lot – I remember those. Are those still popular or were they replaced with “dusters”? I remember when I was a kid there were supposedly people going around wearing trench coats and flashing their dongs and balls at innocent ladies. I never witnessed it or did it (for real) (not like that weed joke earlier) but did that ruin the trench coat industry? I don’t know but this guy look liked a perv.
-Why would ANYONE move into a house with graves around it?? I guess, unless you’re the cemetery guy. Is this an east coast thing? I can barely bring myself to go into non chlorinated bodies of water MUCH LESS imagine staying near a place where a bunch of people’s remains are MUCH LESS trying to sleep in a place where someone is buried. “Hey! Thanks for coming over to the new pad! That? Oh that’s just the previous owner… heh heh heh. Don’t mind him! Scotch?” I KNOW it’s a horror movie but—- ick.
-I liked how the research guy had to run a quick errand back in New York City, ran by a library, listened to some questionable audio tapes and then burned them in the turned on library incinerator. You know, the one in there, running, among all of the library’s priceless books.

Should I keep going or are you ready for me to shut up?

I guess the kid there didn’t get the woman’s-hand-knife actor treatment. And honestly, aside from some grossness involving a bunch of maggots – oh, and that bat scene – he was easily the worst part of this thing. Maybe not HIM but the way they dubbed him. Remember The Babadook? I loved the movie, I only saw it the once and had some questions about the end but looking back in my memories, I really liked it. Except for that kid of hers. OMG kids going around screaming their fucking brains out all the fucking time like that make me want to never go out in public again even though I need things like dog food and beer. And toilet paper. And food for the people that live here. You know. But GOD DAMN, the closest grocery store to me – it’s nice but one of those organic hippy places, but the food is good and all of that. But EVERY TIME I go in there, there’s some kid of any age or gender screaming their fucking heads off and the parent is doing nothing and I want to take them both and toss them out the back and ask them to learn some fucking something or stay away fuck!! Maybe they needed some of that Paddle of God I mentioned earlier.

Oh boy – Focus! Did I like this? Not really but it’s better than a lot of the shit I watch. The sound is mono and screechy, the HD rendering went in and out, the dubbing on some folks was atrocious and the kills went on way too long – especially that bat but, hey, it’s better than forgetting your church clothes on your visit to your dad’s for the weekend and getting “The Stick”. As the New Testament sayeth: Thou cannot receive the Blood of Christ without thine slacks.

FILED UNDER: AT LEAST THEY TRIED

10 thoughts on “the house by the cemetary (1981)

  1. Joe Bob Briggs showed this movie a few weeks ago and I actually went on Twitter (where I never go) during the broadcast and talked to other Drive in Mutants during the broadcast and we all made way too many overreaching theories about the movie, except for all the people who couldn’t talk about anything but Bob. What about Bob? That dubbing job was so bad it made people forget that the movie is utter brilliant nonsense cloaked in a vomit brown robe of pretension! Joe Bob himself was trying to put Agatha Christie motivations to the characters’ actions like it was a real movie, and Eli Roth was there too for some reason. So in summary, I have loved this movie since I figured out what Italian horror was, and also it makes no sense at all which is hard to accept when you like for things to SAY SOMETHING. And it has a fake quote at the end.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This comment is a million times better than the write up! Eli Roth, huh? Was he “acting”? The only worse actor out there would probably be myself.

      Joe Bob… I boycotted him for years and years because I don’t need some Texan talking about movies I already like but after I got over myself, he’s not too bad. I guess! Texans!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The worst part is he’s not really from Texas, he’s from Arkansas. Are they rivals to your football team? I seem to remember Boomer Sooner. Anyway, Eli Roth was a guest because he’s a fan person, and also he wanted everyone to know that he’s not a horror director because he thinks people look down on horror movies.

        Liked by 1 person

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