21 May 2024
Inn of the Damned (1975)
117 min.
Directed by Terry Bourke.
With Dame Judith Anderson, Lionel Long, Alex Cord, Michael Craig, Joseph Furst, Tony Bonner, John Meillon, John Morris, Robert Quilter.
This western-themed horror from Australia makes a rather incomprehensible mess of its plot and pace.

Psychotic innkeeper Straulle (Anderson) and her husband (Furst) knock off guests who visit their wayward lodge, and then take their money. Hey, they gotta earn a living.

A sheriff begins an investigation into the proprietors, but will he live long enough to find out what they're up to?

We had high hopes for this one, especially since it stars the wonderful Dame Judith Anderson (in a role originally slated for Joan Bennett, which would have made it a wholly different film altogether).

Ultimately, we were disappointed. Mixing western and horror elements is an acceptable choice, but unfortunately they never mesh in any natural (or coherent) way here.

The viewer is left feeling as if he's watching two entirely different storylines.

Only the last half hour begins to pick up steam, as the focus narrows in on Anderson and hubby and the veneer of sanity begins to crack and peel.

Also known as Death Hunter.

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