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Double Feature From Hell
Massimiliano Cerchi had a run of about a decade making movies, starting in the mid-nineties. Mostly shot on video, these tend to be horror films geared toward the blood and breasts appreciating segment of fandom. Two of those films, 1997's Hellinger and 2000's Holy Terror are collected here as a "Double feature from hell".
Neither of these films are classics of the genre. Though Holy Terror is the better of the two, it can't exactly be described as a good film. I'll deal with them separately below.
Hellinger is just shy of seventy five minutes, a fairly short film, but even so it can't manage to stay focused. We open with a young girl named Melissa (played by Kelly Goldstein as a child, and Shana Betz as an adult) being berated by her abusive father. Quite quickly, the corrupted, demonic priest Hellinger arrives and kills dear old dad, pulling out his eyeballs for good measure.
Cut to the present. Melissa is grown and seeing perhaps the worst therapist in cinematic history, Dr. Ross (Robert Cummins). She still can't get over the murder of her father, or the horrific visage of Hellinger. She's involved with Roger (James Clifton), a senior member of a somewhat shady televangelist operation. Also, Hellinger has returned for unclear reasons and is killing random people. Melissa's tattooed cousin Det. Lonegan (James M. O'Donoghue) is heading up the investigation, and believes her repeated visions of Hellinger are related.
And that's about as much as I can muster for a synopsis. Lonegan rolls a pimp looking for information, and has sex with a prostitute for the usual reasons. Dr. Ross spills intimate secrets of Melissa's sessions to Lonegan. Hellinger kills a lot of people. There's a climactic battle between good and evil. The story is muddled and unclear. The performances at times are decent, but never great. There are a number of stilted line reads. There are audio and video quality issues. The effects are enthusiastic but cheesy. This is not a good film.
Holy Terror is in all ways superior to Hellinger. It has better audio and visual quality, better performances, a moderately more understandable plot, and it runs less than an hour.
Kane Archer (Michael Brazier) is a real estate agent who has somehow become in thrall to a demonically possessed nun (Katy Moses) who compels him to rent out a particular house to delectable young people so that she can kill them and eat their souls. Or something. He rents the house out this time to Julie and David (Beverly Lynne and Charlie David), a perky young couple who are suspicious but overjoyed to find a furnished home for such a great price.
The pair invites several of their friends over for a housewarming party, which continues even though Julie has started seeing strange things, including being covered in blood in the shower. The partiers drink, dance, play with a Ouija board and consider going for a skinny dip in the backyard pool. Things really get going when Kane shows up unexpectedly. People die, supernatural evil stuff happens, Kane shows that he has a deeply hidden bit of humanity left. The end.
Holy Terror is an improvement over the other film on the disc, but still isn't great. The shower / sex scenes are way too long and obviously there to fill time, even if a tiny smidge of plot is advanced. The performances are decent, but not outstanding, and there never seems to have been enough time for retakes if someone flubs a line. The effects are not bad, and several gallons of fake blood and bloody vomit are expended. However, the one real standout of the film is the demon nun makeup. She's bloated and wicked and genuinely creepy.
That's not enough to save the film, however. For both of these, I'd recommend you Skip It.
Both movies are shown in 1.78:1 widescreen, and both have issues, though Holy Terror is considerably better looking. These appear to be shot on video, and the image is muddy and dark, and in Hellinger there are a few tracking lines visible.
Audio is Dolby digital 2 channel, and also problematic. There are no subtitles, and at times the dialogue can be hard to make out. The audio has an echo and sometimes an audible hiss.
There are no extras included.
Neither Hellinger or Holy Terror have much to offer viewers who are not avid fans of low budget, straight to video horror of this kind. If you are not such a fan, and they do exist, look elsewhere for your thrills.