Adamantium Bullet

31 Days Of Horror: THE INCUBUS

For the next 31 days, we here at Adamantium Bullet will be reviewing one horror film a day leading up to Halloween. Each film will be horrific, terrifying, chilling, pulse-pounding, or flat-out awful. All will be endured in honor of the season. Expect SPOILERS. Welcome to Adamantium Bullet’s “All 80s” edition of 31 DAYS OF HORROR.

In this episode, J Bryant and AngieBee discuss the creaky 1982 creeper THE INCUBUS starring John Cassavetes, John Ireland, and Kerrie Keane.

The summer peacefulness of the New England community of Galen is suddenly shattered by a series of murders. Dr. Sam Cordell (John Cassavetes), a newly arrived surgeon and pathologist, tries to help veteran police chief Hank Walden (John Ireland) investigate the baffling crimes. Jenny, Dr. Cordell's daughter, tells her father about the terrible recurring nightmares suffered by her boyfriend, Tim, which seem to coincide with the slayings.

Thirteen people and one dog were slaughtered during the runtime of THE INCUBUS. Ten of those kills were on-screen, four were off-screen.

While this film was mostly about characters describing the attacks/murders and the audience getting to see the aftermath rather than the actual acts, there was one bit involving a farmer accidentally shooting his own foot off before getting a shovel slice to the neck that was memorably graphic. Guess that’ll have to do as the winner of the MOST MEMORABLE KILL category.

Topless bikini babe Mandy (Mitch Martin), shirtless average dude Roy (Matt Birman), fully nude shower scene with Jenny (Erin Noble), fully nude shower scene with Jane (Michelle Davros), fully nude torture scene with random woman who wasn’t given a name therefore we weren’t able to identify the actress, and there are some naked corpses if that’s your thing.

We were tempted to go with the actual full-on appearance of ‘The Incubus’ even though it only lasts about ten seconds and he’s pretty much probably why you decided to watch this in the first place, but we’re not going to go with him. His appearance is just too short. Hell, if you blink during his big moment, you will literally miss him. ‘The Incubus’ is literally a “Blink And You’ll Miss Him” cameo in his own movie. So, that said, the winner of the SIGNATURE MOMENT category is the ending. It comes out of nowhere and doesn’t really make any sense if you think about it for more two seconds, but it works on a pure visceral “gut punch” level.

Jenny, despite having full knowledge a series of brutal rapes and murders are occurring in the small town she lives in, constantly leaves the house in the middle of the night to walk to other locations. Not drive to other locations, not call a cab, not even ride a bike, but walk. She walks to and from places, in the middle of the night, while a killer is on the loose. Oh and more than one of those walks is to the house of the boy who is suspected of committing the rape/murders!

There is an entire incest subplot involving our lead Sam (John Cassavetes) and his daughter Jenny that goes nowhere and serves no purpose to the overall plot of THE INCUBUS. It’s a just an incest subplot for the sake of having an incest subplot. Sam spies on Jenny in the shower, Jenny sits on the end of Sam’s bed and swears to him that she’ll “be with him forever”, Sam calls Jenny all the time to make sure she’s not spending time with boys her age, Jenny strokes Sam’s arm in a way that is very uncomfortable, Sam kisses Jenny full on the lips more than once, the list goes on and on. What the f*ck were the filmmakers thinking by including this subplot? Did one of the producers just need some taboo incest BS to keep his interest in the project? Did the actors request these scenes? Was there a point to this whole subplot in some earlier cut of the movie? These are questions left unanswered leaving the audience with only a lingering sense of ‘ick’.

The film is often miscalled ‘THE Incubus’ because of the marketing tagline - "The dreams. The nightmares. The desires. The fears. The mystery. The revelation. The warning. The Incubus: He is the destroyer." In actuality, the film is simply entitled 'Incubus'. (IMDB)

Posted by J. Bryant

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