Cardiac Arrest (1979)

Directed by Murray Mintz [Other horror films: N/A]

What could have been a promising early slasher of the 1980’s was ultimately little more than a rather dull crime/drama flick with elements of horror sprinkled in far too sparingly.

Cardiac Arrest, what with it’s feel, had the sensibilities of a 70’s flick, and while I don’t have an issue with 70’s crime flicks (The Laughing Policeman and The Taking of Pelham One Two Three are both films I enjoyed), I can’t say that much of this wasn’t utterly dry. I liked the main detectives well enough, but that wasn’t enough to keep the story interesting.

As it was Garry Goodrow and Michael Paul Chan did fine as the two main detectives, and I sort of liked the way they worked together, but Cardiac Arrest was 80% crime, 15% drama, and 5% horror, and that might be generous. I found the story, for a crime movie, decent, but it was very far from engaging.

Unfortunately, the poster for the film foreshadows a lot more promise than what the film is ever able to deliver, because save one or two scenes, this barely counts as a horror film. It hurts more because this is one that I’ve been interesting in seeing for at least six years – truth be told, past a certain point, I wasn’t expecting much, but I was still somewhat disappointed.

The really sad thing is that, if this wasn’t put out there as a horror film, it would have probably made a decent television pilot, like The Streets of San Francisco’s hour-and-a-half pilot that dealt with Satanism. But as a movie that’s marketed toward horror fans, Cardiac Arrest was just way too dull and meandering.


This was covered on Fight Evil’s podcast, so if you want to listen to Chucky (@ChuckyFE) and I discuss Cardiac Arrest, by all means, enjoy.

Author: Jiggy's Horror Corner

Fan of the horror genre, writer of mini-reviews, and lover of slashers.

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