Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Movie Review #26: The Gate
Directed by Tibor Takács
Finding The Gate on Ebay for under $50.00 wasn't easy. After a few weeks of bidding on the DVD, I finally secured a purchase for $25.00, which isn't bad considering the film was discontinued and extremely rare. I finally settled in to watch the film with my girlfriend, who was terrified of the movie as a child. But there is nothing scary about the film in 2008 - as a matter of fact the monsters are hysterical, like mini-Godzillas that multipy.
Of course the parents take off on a 3 day vacation, leaving the kids to fend for themselves against the powers of evil. Stephen Dorff (playing the lead role of Glen) unleashes demons from Hell through a portal in his backyard, by way of a hole left by an uprooted tree that once held their tree house. The boys find several stones with glowing crystals near the hole, which turn out to be the least of their worries once the pint-sized demons are loose. When the family dog dies and a friend buries him in the hole, the demons have the sacrifice they need and the gate is opened. Glen's best friend Terry (played by Louis Tripp) discovers the secrets of The Gate while listening to a heavy metal album, in which the rituals are explained when the record is played backwards. You gotta love the 80's - we blamed everything on heavy metal music.
The only scary moment of the film is when a decayed corpse breaks out of the living room wall, the first human sacrifice for The Gate. The corpse drags Terry inside the walls and Glen & his sister knock out the zombie, who then smashes into a dozen little demons when he hits the floor - a pretty cool visual effect even for 1987. All in all the film is a fun watch to reminsice about the 1980's and you will definitely get a laugh out of the demons who are obviously actors in bad alien masks. I give The Gate 3 toes and recommend digging for it (no pun intended). You won't even find it on Netflix, so Ebay is your best bet.
The Gate on IMDB: