21 July 2024
The Night Strangler (1974)
74 min.
Directed by Dan Curtis.
With Darren McGavin, Simon Oakland, Jo Ann Pflug, Richard Anderson, John Carradine, Margaret Hamilton.
A worthy followup to the Carl Kochak thriller The Night Stalker (1972).

Dan Curtis (who had produced Stalker) this time took the director's seat.

Now relocated to Seattle, news reporter Carl Kolchak is on the trail of an ageless killer, who appears every twenty-one years to drain the blood of his victims.

Turns out the killer uses the blood from his victims to sustain his immortality - sort of an elixir of life - and then goes underground for another twenty-one years.

Can Kolchak find and stop the killer before he magically disappears? If he doesn't, how will he prove such a wild theory to all his disbelieving colleagues?

Difficult to say why we like these Night telefilms so much.

Must be the intriguing mix of the common and supernatural, the punchy and clever dialogue (especially between Kolchak and his boss, reminiscent of those great newspaper films of the 40s).

McGavin is simply perfect as the stalwart Kolchak (the actor expertly fills out the character not unlike Peter Falk as the frumpled but persistent Columbo).

Makes an excellent double feature with 1972's The Night Stalker.

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