Friday, February 21, 2014


VISITING HOURS (1982) (R) Dir. Jean-Claude Lord
103 mins.

This is a very well executed slasher film that probably got overlooked because of the genre's oversaturation in the early 80's. The acting is top notch, especially by Lee Grant and Michael Ironside, who's performance as the killer resembles that of Jack Nicholson in The Shining.
The plot is very straightforward for a genre piece, Ironside hates women because his mother permanently disfigured his beloved, yet abusive father. Years later, a journalist, played by Grant, is covering a similar case in which she publicly insists on exonerating the female. Ironside, seeing her work on television, then takes his anger out on her by killing her nanny, attacking Grant, and stalking her children. He follows the injured journalist to the nearby hospital and mayhem ensues.
This movie performs at a frantic pace and really works in creating suspense an and a tense environment. Ironside is brilliant and makes some of the hammier portions of his role stunningly work. The music is decent and the film has an almost made-for-TV look to it, which actually adds to the seedy atmosphere. And yes, there is a Shatner alert in effect.
Tense, psychosexual and better than Halloween II. Overall, it's a wonder why this is overlooked; perhaps its the lack of gore or cinematic aesthetic, but it is a very decent entry to the genre, that is as intelligent as it is underrated. 7/10


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