Newest Reviews
Weathering with You
Rim of the World
Love & Basketball
JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time
We Need to Do Something
Bigfoot Hunters
Armitage III: Polymatrix
Girls Nite Out
Five Women for the Killer
Dolce Vita, La
I Am Belmaya
Lodger, The
Show, The
Beta Test, The
Medium, The
John and the Hole
Survivalist, The
Ape Woman, The
Black Widow
Cop Secret
Dark Eyes of London, The
Fay Grim
Night of the Animated Dead
Freshman Year
Escape Room: Tournament of Champions
Anne at 13,000 Ft.
Even Mice Belong in Heaven
Death Screams
Freakscene: The Story of Dinosaur Jr.
East, The
Newest Articles
You Have No Choice: Invasion of the Body Snatchers on Blu-ray
You Can't Tame What's Meant to Be Wild: The Howling on Blu-ray
Commendably Brief: Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Super Silents: Early Universal Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
Too Much to Bear: Prophecy on Blu-ray
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
  Equinox Monsters from Beyond
Year: 1970
Director: Dennis Muren, Mark McGee, Jack Harris, Jack Woods
Stars: Edward Connell, Barbara Hewitt, Robin Christopher, Frank Bonner, James Duron, Fritz Leiber, Patrick Burke, James Phillips, Sharon Gray, Louise Clayton, Norvelle Brooks, Irving J. Lichtenstein
Genre: Horror, FantasyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: An ambitious, low-budget monster movie, Equinox was concocted by future Industrial Light and Magic maestro Dennis Muren in collaboration with stop-motion animators Dave Allen and Jim Danforth. Basically a fond homage to classic monster fare, from King Kong (1933) to Ray Harryhausen, their inventive effort was purchased by exploitation producer Jack H. Harris, of The Blob (1958) fame, who added a new sound mix and trippy optical effects, plus additional scenes with the original cast.

In a plot that prefigures The Evil Dead (1983), an asylum inmate recounts a wild tale to a sceptical journalist and doctors. Four students, David (Edward Connell), Susan (Barbara Hewitt), Vicky (Robin Christopher) and Jim (Frank Bonner, later a regular in sitcom WKRP in Cincinnati) head to the woods for a meeting with Professor Waterman (renowned fantasy and sci-fi author Fritz Leiber, who wrote Night of the Eagle (1961)). But with his cabin in ruins, the professor is nowhere to be found. The kids glimpse a medieval castle in the distance, monster footprints in the sand, and a cackling old geezer in a cave hands them a magic book. This “bible of evil, witchcraft and demonism” unleashes a host of otherworldly portals and hideous monsters, while a demonic forest ranger (co-director Jack Woods) tries to grab the book for his own sinister ends.

With its raggedy hand-held footage, stilted performances, and a reliance on voiceovers over half-glimpsed actors, Equinox bears the hallmarks of both student filmmaking and low budget exploitation. It’s a fairly slipshod exercise in storytelling, padded with drawn-out chase scenes and a curious incident where the satanic ranger molests Susan, that doesn’t make a lot of sense - despite a lot of metaphysical blather - and, unlike Ray Harryhausen, takes a long time getting to the monsters. The Theremin-heavy score, lame banter and casual fashions worn by the slightly square college kids make this seem like a particularly trippy episode of Scooby-Doo, but there are some inventive images (flashbacks to ancient temples, red-tinted scenes of monks leaping into a hellish pit, Prof. Waterman’s attempt at demon summoning) and the monsters are great fun.

Messrs. Muren, Danforth and Allen tinker with concepts and visuals they would revisit in later big-budget blockbusters: a stop-motion giant ape, winged demon and briefly glimpsed Lovecraftian tentacle horror, a photographically enlarged green ogre and a spectre of death. Their monster scenes were filmed in 1967, but the footage from which Harris and Woods constructed the bulk of the pulp horror plot was filmed a few years later. Consequently, Equinox marks an awkward transition from the relative innocence of creature features to the darker, more fatalistic era ushered in by Night of the Living Dead (1968). Too kitsch for the horror crowd, too downbeat to be much fun for monster kids. Still, from little things great things do grow.

Click here for the trailer

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam


This review has been viewed 3023 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt


Last Updated: