Film Review: THE SLAYER (1982)

When I think of the films of the early eighties, I always think about the slasher genre. I’m a big fan of earlier and less known scream queen performances in movies like Popcorn. I also like the haunted dreamlike films that dealt with women as not only victims, but possible killers. Many of the films I really like, and have missed over the years, have been released by Arrow Video. When I think through awesome Arrow releases like The Mutilator and The Initiation, this upcoming movie should come to mind. The only reason that it doesn’t is because I never knew it existed.

Yes, many of the more judgmental readers will sit there and say that I don’t know shit because I had never seen The Slayer. Well, there’s a lot of stuff out there. I Since I was born in ’83, and have probably seen more horror from the seventies and eighties than the people who lived through the decades, I will try to avoid being too hard on myself. The age of physical media and its extinction doesn’t help either. While The Slayer may be well known to some, it was a movie that has been obscure for years. I’m sure there are people who still have the tape. It wasn’t one that was going to be on the end cap at Best Buy though; so, those of you that are also just hearing about it, need to find it.

This is a brutal and eerie little slasher that came out the year before I was born. I couldn’t believe some of the kills in this film. One was particularly inventive. It also happened to have awesome effects work. I can’t say anymore, because I don’t want to spoil anything. It really makes this movie a slasher that you will remember. As always, the Arrow prices are tough for blind buys. This could be another explanation for the narrow viewing habits of the current generation. This one, however, is probably worth the risk for many people. So while Arrow’s prices are sometimes daunting, they actually seem like they’ve been coming down. It also seems like those of the slasher genre are getting cheaper releases. I hope this is a trend, since I would love to see physical media live a little bit longer.

In the end, I think this movie is brutal enough for today’s gore fan and even scary enough for the fans that are borderline mainstream viewers. It has a nice balance of style, sound, horror, and gore. It is also a film from a writer/director that has been involved in many projects of which I’m sure you’ve heard. So when you check out J. S. Cardone on IMDB, you can see that he’s definitely had some influence on the horror world over the years. I will also say that this is my favorite of any of his writing or directing credits, which is saying something to some and maybe nothing to others. Either way, I think the collectors of pretty much anything horror should go get this one, blind buy or not.

Author: Steven Paul

Born and raised in Michigan, slowly dying in Florida. I’m here to keep you informed about everything in the world of indie horror. I also specialize in all genres of exploitation, cult, and extreme cinema. As part owner and Editor of Film and Television for Beneath the Underground, it is my responsibility to provide vast amounts of information for the horror fan and an outlet for the filmmaker.

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