Monsters Are Such Interesting People: A Deadly Duo from Wes Craven


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Deadly Blessing (1981) “The Hittites make the Amish look like swingers.” says Martha (Maren Jensen), who married Jim, the only one who ever left. The nearby Hittite sect is run Jim’s strict and cruel father, Isaiah (Ernest Borgnine), who insists Martha is the Incubus. When Jim is killed in a mysterious tractor accident, many of the Hittites come under Martha’s suspicion, including William, a man-child played by We Craven favorite Michael Berryman. Martha has some friends come to console her. Lana is played by Sharon Stone in her first movie role that wasn’t “partygoer” or “girl #2”, and Vicky runs around in hotpants trying to seduce other young Hittites. She was played by Susan Buckner, who never made another movie after this. More people start dying, and the suspects mount…or is it the Incubus? In a scene very reminiscent to Craven’s own A Nightmare on Elm Street, Martha dozes off in a bathtub to find a live snake between her legs. If you look close enough, Jensen is clearly wearing a bikini in the tub scene. I guess Wes thought that enough people had skipped this one that he could bring it back in Elm St. Lots of pretty girls in this one, some nudity and a pretty good ending. Lois Nettleton and Lisa Hartman play neighbors. One of Craven’s lesser talked about movies, but worth a watch.

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Deadly Friend (1986) Teenage genius, Paul, has a self aware robot named BB. He and his single mom move into a really nice neighborhood, where next door neighbor, Sam (Kristy Swanson) is an obvious victim of physical abuse from her drunk father. Paul, Sam local paperboy Tom watch BB play basketball, beat up bullies and pick combination locks, until local grouch-woman Mrs. Parker blows the robot to bits with a shotgun. Paul’s luck continues on a downward spiral when just minutes after his first kiss, Sam gets thrown down a flight of stairs by her dad, leaving her in a coma. As well as being a teenage robotics whiz, Paul also knows brain surgery, and he plants BB’s brain chip into Sam’s brain. Sam wakes up and runs around the rest of the movie with blue eyeliner and holding her fingers together like robot clamps, getting deadly revenge on those who did them wrong. Them being Sam and BB, she seems to have retained both of their grudges. Lost of plot holes, but this was harmless teenage fun from Wes Craven, and contains hands-down the greatest head-exploded-by-a-basketball scene in cinema history.

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