THE WEBER MOVIE COUNTDOWN

THE GOAL FOR 2018: 200 MOVIES WATCHED BY MIDNIGHT NEW YEAR'S EVE!  (AFTER TOPPING OUT AT 194 in 2017)

CAN HE DO IT?

​​THE WEBER MOVIE COUNTDOWN

CAST A DEADLY SPELL (1991)


A rarely seen gem that just so happens to be on HBO Go this month (I had never seen it and wanted to one of these days), Cast a Deadly Spell was actually made for HBO back in 1991.  It’s a gimmick, but a great gimmick.  The setting is 1948 Los Angeles. Classic Phillip Marlowe/Raymond Chandler territory.  A femme fatale (Julianne Moore).  A mysterious client (David Warner) who employs our gumshoe hero (Fred Ward) to find something for him.  Just one thing: in this particular slice of 1948 Los Angeles, everybody uses magic.  The “something” Warner is looking for: a book known as the Necronomicon.  The gumshoe’s name: H. Phil Lovecraft.  Cast a Deadly Spell is a witty humorous combination of film noir and Lovecraft, filled with blood-red rain, gargoyles that come to life, vampires and werewolves in the local jail, you name it.  But in ’48 L-A, all this is commonplace and no one bats an evil eye.  Save Lovecraft, who refuses to use any magic, making him the odd bird in the flock.  Ward plays the weary P.I. to perfection, and Moore matches him as his ex-wife/torch singer.  Incredibly amusing and played totally deadpan, which helps one through the sillier moments.  If you’re in the mood for something different with a sense of fun and a solid appreciation of both genres mixed here, then get to HBO Go before June wraps up and take a look at Cast a Deadly Spell.  Followed a few years later by a sequel called Witch Hunt, with Dennis Hopper as Lovecraft.  Haven’t seen that one.


Here's the HBO Video trailer made for video retailers, and the infamous diner scene where Lovecraft almost gets offed by a demon.  It's a little strong towards the end - you've been warned!


TLA'S  one word review: impish

INCREDIBLY OBSCURE FILM DEPARTMENT