Prince of Darkness (1987) – A Horror Film Report

John Carpenters Prince of Darkness.

If you want the complete plot please go to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_of_Darkness_(film)

Prince of Darkness has a prevailing sense of supernatural terror.  It never gives up on the tension.  It is so rich and organic – from the settings, to the clothes, to the bugs/insects, to the make up, to the props, to the dialogue, and to the interesting storyline.

The film is highly artistic.  There is something inspiring about the color scheme.  Everything is de-saturated, muted, neutral, and has lots of earth tones.  Visually, this film excels.  Props, world building, and scenery are all very important. I think Carpenter went the extra mile with scenery, but it didn’t seem gaudy or forced.  The cinematography and camera pans are really well done too. If you pay attention to it you will see the art in it.  The film really sets the tone with its music.  It’s really good at keeping the threat alive and making me feel scared.

The film is unrelenting and effectively conveys great dread.  The film holds a lot of weight and power.

There’s not much blood/gore and I think it would have been nice to see more of that.  That does not ruin the film though.  More gore would just make this film break the mold.  It would have made this film go beyond exceptional.

The character growth isn’t obvious.  The film gives you hints at the characters strengths and weaknesses.  It’s subtle but it is there.  In character growth, isn’t it more natural to hint at it? Nobody expresses his or her strengths and weakness outright – “Hey, I’m the brave one, and what I do is bravery, because brave is my middle name.”  I like how they are just simple people with everyday goals, forced to make a stand.

There’s no apparent message, it’s just a really good horror film.  It’s not pretentious or cheesy.  It falls into that nice balance between the two.

Prince of Darkness is very scary, thoughtful, and atmospheric.  You should see it to get scared and to enjoy a master – John Carpenter, at work, who directed, wrote, and scored the film.  He had a successful career and really made a mark in the world of horror.

Review by Bob Smeets
Let horror be your date for the night!

Additional Material

Original Trailer

GoodBadFlicks
You can watch a 9 min video here on the art, story, and production of Prince of Darkness.  I’m serious, it’s really well done.

Doc Rotten
A pretty good podcast on the film.  They do other great horror film podcasts as well so check them out..

http://www.docrotten.com/2014/02/23/eps-65-prince-of-darkness-1987/

 

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