Adamantium Bullet

31 Days Of Horror: THE PROWLER

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 sick puppy 1981 slasher THE PROWLER starring Farley Granger, Lawrence Tierney, and Vicky Dawson.

Avalon Bay, 1945: On the night of her graduation dance, young Rosemary and her date are brutally murdered by a prowler thought to be a jilted soldier home from the war. The killer was never found. 30 years later, the dance is held again for the first time since that horrific evening - but something else may have also returned. Tonight, the teens of this sleepy town will meet their grisly ends at the hands - and pitchfork, blade and more - of THE PROWLER!

Eight gruesome, gory, glorious kills that almost made up for how dull the script was.

THE PROWLER is a bloody buffet of brutality brought to you by the brilliant beast Tom Savini. There’s something sickening and sadistic for everyone. You want to see a young couple in love double impaled by a pitchfork? You’ll get to see a young couple in love double impaled by a pitchfork! Have a pitchfork poking preference that’s a little on the lighter side? Perhaps just a single impalement of a buxom young babe taking a shower? Well, guess what? You’ll get that too! Pitchfork not your thing? More of a bayonet kind of bloodmonger? No problem. Our titular terror twists the terrified teens into torturous tangles with a tenacity most troubling. Skewers the townsfolk of Avalon Bay he does, through the head, the neck, and the throat. Spills and splatters all about with nary a second to gloat. Bloody bayonets not bold enough? Need something more flashy and explosive? THE PROWLER has you covered, thankfully not with something corrosive. Why not try a pair of shotgun serenades? One somber, one spine-tinglingly sick. Guts and gore for all who want it, so you’d best act quick. What I’m trying to say with all this ridiculous rhyming is that ALL of the kills in THE PROWLER were MOST MEMORABLE KILLS. That’s it. Let’s move on.

Sherry (Lisa Dunsheath) fully nude in the shower, Lisa (Cindy Weintraub) swimming in her undies, and not much else. Director Joseph Zito apparently had ZERO interest in getting any of the moderately attractive male cast members of THE PROWLER to show some skin.


On top of committing almost every dumb “Horror Movie Move” possible, including the ultra-rare “Walk BACKWARDS Alone At Night While A Killer Is On The Loose” variant, Pam (Vicky Dawson) is brain-meltingly oblivious. We’re talking solid runner-up, if not winner, of “Most Unobservant Final Girl Ever”. It doesn’t matter if it’s her dead friend’s bodies stashed in the bathroom of her dorm room, creepy Major Chatham (Lawrence Tierney) rolling about in his wheelchair, possible clues to the identity of The Prowler, or even The Prowler himself during a chase sequence, Pam, come hell or high water, will NOT NOTICE THEM.

Mark (Christopher Goutman) is the worst horror movie deputy outside of Dewey in the SCREAM franchise. This guy just doesn’t know how to do his job. He investigates strange sounds, but won’t enter the room where the sounds came from. He investigates a dorm where a strange sound might’ve come from, but won’t check all the rooms in the dorm, stopping just short of the one where two bodies are literally lying out in the open. He BREAKS INTO Major Chatham’s house TWICE without probable cause or a search warrant, but doesn’t do a full search of the place, and repeatedly skips over the one room that happens to have a clue to the identity of The Prowler. Oh and speaking Major Chatham and the identity of The Prowler, Mark thinks he’s the prime suspect, despite the fact the old guy is in his seventies, is bound to a wheelchair, and can barely do anything other than creep on young girls. It should come as no surprise that Mark and Pam are the little lovebirds at the center of THE PROWLER. Those two dummies deserve each other.

> It's been only recently discovered that THE PROWLER was re-released to a handful of theaters in North and South Carolina as PITCHFORK MASSACRE in Spring 1984. It is still unknown who the distributor was, or whether they had legally acquired the rights to release the film.

> Tom Savini considers this to be his best work.

> This film was the reason that director Joseph Zito was later selected to direct FRIDAY THE 13th: THE FINAL CHAPTER.

> According to the audio commentary, AVCO Embassy pictures made an offer of $750,000 for distribution rights to the film (THE PROWLER cost $1 million to produce). Director Joseph Zito states that the producer declined the offer and decided to self-distribute the film himself, a decision that Zito believes hurt the film's box office.

> Farley Granger was cast in the film because the wife of one of the film's investors happened to be taking an acting class with him.

> Released internationally as ROSEMARY'S KILLER.

> The USELESS KNOWLEDGE portion of this review was sourced from IMDB.

Posted by AngieBee

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