During a night of Insomnia I turned on web-TV channel American Horrors where I stumbled upon The Redeemer: Son Of Satan! A movie that to the best of my knowledge I had never heard anything about, despite it’s obvious flaws, something about it has really stayed with me.
Some years after they all finish school, a group of people re-unite at for a school reunion, upon arrival they soon realise that something is wrong, their arrival seems unexpected. Their doubts are further raised when they realise that the reunion is not the full school gathering they expected, and seemingly only for the six of them. Soon becoming locked in an empty school building, a killer is on the loose with an agenda that they cannot get to the bottom of.
There is something kind of interesting about a 70’s zero budget horror movie, something a little more chilling than the standard fare. In the case of this 1978 movie, that something is apparent from its chilling opening, a quarry with a lake in it’s waters ripple slowly of the course of its chilling opening credits and score, before a teenage boy rises from it and walks to a school bus. It’s the sort of opening that keeps you with a movie, if only for an explanation as to what the hell is going on.
Things go downhill from there on out, but for some unknown reason it still is utterly compulsive viewing. You easily figure out why all the people are called to the reunion, because they all in some way have committed some sort of sin, for which they need redemption, sadly for them its redemption through death; in some ways the movie becomes slightly biblical.
Death in the movie is sudden, and the reactions to the deaths incredibly blasé, these performers might react better if you stole a dollar off them. It’s fairly clear to see why all but one of the actors (Jeannetta Arnette) disappeared from the acting world after the movie; the one that can act the best is the one that made it.
Not wishing to sound like a pervert, but there was definitely some sex missing from the movie, it needed the sex element to spice things up, however your led to believe that at least two of the people is a sexual deviant, or if you prefer a lesbian and a gay; yes these are the sort of sins the characters need to be saved from.
The movies key strength is in its score by composers Phil Gallo and Clem Vicari Jr. a kind of clunky 70’s electro piece, that adds some real menace to the movie.
The interesting thing about this movie is that I can find a thousand flaws, and little good about it to recommend, yet in some ways it has haunted me and I already (less than 24 hours from viewing it) I want to see it again, even despite the fact that some aspects make no sense at all, and are arguable laughable.