The Slayer

Released originally in the UK by the legendary (and equally infamous) VIPCO, The Slayer had the dubious pleasure of being one of the first ‘video nasties’.  Unfairly grouped together with some frankly dreadful and pitiful pieces of celluloid crap, J.S. Cardone’s supernatural chiller is certainly a lot better than the likes of those distasteful nazi death camp films.

Brother and sister Kay and Eric with their respective spouses have the opportunity to spend time in a holiday home on a secluded picturesque island off the coast of Georgia.  Eric is a bit of a fisherman, so he’s looking forward to it, his wife Brooke isn’t too keen but goes anyway as it’s a vacation and an excuse to get away.  Kay is going through a bout of depression so her husband David is keen thinking it will be good for her.

When they arrive, the creepy pilot of the plane that flew them there informs the group that they are the only ones on the island and earlier on Eric was told there are also no phones.  Ignoring all of this and determined to have a relaxing time they set off to the house, which turns out to be rather nice.

Kay has suffered from vivid nightmares since she was a child and this has continued throughout her adult life, this causes concern as she ‘dreams’ the death of one of the group.  This sets the stage for endless thunder storms, rain and slaughter all wrapped up with a stylish 80’s ribbon.

Unfairly labeled as a ‘slasher’ The Slayer has elements of that celebrated genre but is much more.  A couple of the deaths are inventive and not just a stab here and a stab there.  The real locations are used effectively with some nice camerawork and some good editing shown.  Credit to Robert Folk’s awesome orchestral score which gives the film, an extra layer of class.

The Slayer is quite surreal at times, atmospheric and overall a really good example of decent 80’s horror film making.  Arrow Video’s Blu-ray has been restored to a very high standard and features an absolute shed-load of extras.

Well worth the investment.

  • Starring Sarah Kendall  Carol Kottenbrook  Alan McRae  Frederick Flynn
  • Director J.S. Cardone
  • Distributor Arrow Video