Directed by Alan Beattie [Other horror films: N/A]
This flick feels so much more a product of the 1970’s than it does the 1980’s, and that, in part, drives the enjoyment that can be derived from the movie.
While sometimes lacking the style of other slasher whodunit’s, Delusion still has a fun story that both maintains mystery and suspense. The kill scenes are a bit weak, I admit, and calling this a slasher is a wee bit of a stretch, but it certainly possesses many of the elements you might expect. As I said, it feels more like a 70’s film, and that’s due to the dryer nature of the content, the whole feel of the film, and the first-person narration.
First-person narration is something I’ve mostly seen from the 1970’s, be it Let’s Scare Jessica to Death or Death Bed: The Bed That Eats. It’s sort of cheesy, of course, but at the same time, I think there’s charm in that approach to storytelling. It helps that I watched a VHS rip that was a bit scratchy and blurry – I could easily believe this to be from a decade earlier.
Patricia Pearcy does pretty good in this one. Though she appeared previously in 1976’s Squirm, she hasn’t really been in that much, which is a shame, as I think she does well in this film, particularly near the conclusion. Leon Charles (he died the shortly after this film came out) did really good as a sort of fatherly figure butler here, and ended up perhaps my favorite character. Luckily, being one of Joseph Cotton’s final movies, it does well for him, and he character got some work in at the end. Lastly, both David Hayward and John Dukakis made favorable impressions also.
Reviewing this film wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the ending. I will fully admit to having been deeply surprised during the conclusion, and I loved the film all the more for it. I didn’t see it coming, and it left me more than a little pleased once the credits started rolling.
This doesn’t seem to be a widely-spoken about film, either under the name Delusion or The House Where Death Lives (which even I will admit is a more eye-catching title). It’s a shame, because while I wouldn’t call this film a classic, and I know some of the cheesy aspects might turn some off, I had a really fun time with this.
2 thoughts on “Delusion (1981)”