Salem’s Lot 1979 ***

While Stanley Kubrick’s version of The Shining proved to be a hugely influential horror film, there’s many who would argue that Tobe Hooper’s TV miniseries, released in Europe as a feature, had more scares to offer. The town of Salem’s Lot has a population of 2013, but not all of them are alive; novelist Ben Mears (David Soul) moves into town, and teams up with local boy Mark (Lance Kerwin) to fight against the vampires who are taking over. James Mason plays Richard Straker, whose Marsten House hides the secret. The sequence in which the vampires hover outside the windows of unwary teenagers is the stuff of pure nightmares; Reggie Nalder’s Kurt Barlow is an equally disturbing apparition to behold. Kenneth McMillian, Ed Flanders, Bonnie Bedelia and Fred Willard are amongst an accomplished cast.


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