Not more than a month separated the release of two 1990 films dealing with the Lilith legend of Jewish folklore--Troma's DEF BY TEMPTATION and this film, NIGHT ANGEL. Although traditionally portrayed as the murderous, demonic incarnation of pure lust, Lilith is a deadly bore this time
around. As NIGHT ANGEL opens, Lilith (Isa Andersen) slithers out of a grave while an off screen voice explains that the demon has plagued mankind since the dawn of history. The scene shifts suddenly to the offices of Siren magazine, where employees are working feverishly to finish an overdue cover
design. Craig (Linden Ashby), the art director, is feeling a bit ragged because of the strange dreams he's been having in which a woman slithers out of a grave at night (get it?). Hoping that widespread exposure to her image will plunge the world into chaos, Lilith makes several attempts to get on
the cover of Siren. First, she dates the owner of the magazine (Sam Hennings), but when he balks at making her a cover girl, Lilith suddenly appears in his bedroom to seduce and slaughter him, slicing up his wife and son for kicks. After a mourning period of about 30 seconds, the Siren gang
proceeds with plans for a big party to impress a client. In the process, Craig falls in love with Kirstie (Debra Feuer), sister of Rita (Karen Black), who has just inherited the magazine. Lilith makes a grand entrance at the party, demonstrates her sensuality by licking the foam off the neck of a
beer bottle, then jumps to the nearest pole for a writhing, pelvis-thrusting dance number. As you might guess, she makes a big impression on all the men in the crowd, particularly on Rod (Gary Hudson), an editor, and Ken (Doug Jones), the perpetually horny office boy. Rod steals Lilith from Ken
and takes her home to his swinging bachelor pad; however, she puts a damper on his plans by shoving him down an elevator shaft to be impaled on a giant spring. Ken, who followed them to Rod's place, is so upset by this gruesome scene that he pounds on the glass security door, shattering it and
apparently losing an arm in the process (though the arm reappears in his next scene). When Lilith shifts her attentions to the new owner of Siren, she has more luck; in no time Rita announces that Lilith will be on the cover of the upcoming issue. This upsets Craig, who is vexed because Lilith has
no resume. She responds to this criticism by attempting to cause a heavy light to drop on his head. Nearly done in by this "accident," Craig rushes off for a date with Kirstie, pausing only to brush off the strange old lady (Helen Martin) who has been trying to warn him that his life is in danger.
While romping in the sack with Kirstie, Craig hallucinates that she is actually Lilith. A jewelry designer by trade, Kirstie gives Craig an amulet containing a stone that she claims has spiritual powers. Back at the Siren offices, the staff has been engaging in a nonstop orgy since taking a gander
at Lilith's cover spread. Meanwhile, Kirstie calls Craig and asks him to pick her up at a neighborhood bar. When Craig enters the bar, it is suddenly transformed into a little corner of hell, with a dozen or so grotesque scenes of torment and degradation on view. Lilith appears and comes close to
plucking out Craig's heart but is thwarted by his amethyst amulet, whereupon the bar suddenly returns to normal and Kirstie drags Craig home. Kirstie, it seems, has become buddies with Sadie, the crazy old lady who has been trying to warn Craig and who happens to be a witch doctor with a
longstanding grudge against Lilith. Brandishing a foot-long knife, Sadie explains that the only way to kill Lilith is by piercing her heart. Setting out to do just that, Sadie, Craig, and Kirstie proceed directly to the Siren offices for a little slow-motion violence. Ken, who by this point has
been transformed into one of Lilith's minions, hits Craig with a baseball bat, then drives off to the graveyard with Kirstie in tow, prepared to offer her to Lilith. But, shoving a tire iron through the cast on Ken's leg, Kirstie escapes and is later joined by Craig and Sadie. Lilith shows her
displeasure with Ken by ripping his heart out, a procedure he seems to enjoy. During the confused scrambling that follows in the graveyard, Sadie appears to have a heart attack, and Craig again comes near to having his heart plucked out by Lilith, who has reverted to her disgusting demonic form.
At the last moment, Sadie comes to the rescue, skewering Lilith who dies, wings spread, in a spectacular explosion of meaty demon bits. In the obligatory capper scene, Craig is in bed with Kirstie when the Siren cover photo suddenly seems to come to life, almost causing him to choke himself to
death with his own hands. At the last minute, he wakes up and finds that it was only a nightmare...or was it?
Despite plenty of grotesque sex and violence, NIGHT ANGEL is a remarkably tedious film, with an unengaging plot that unfolds at a sluggish pace. Its characters are bland, and its action is cliched and confusing. The only remarkable thing about this tepid horror film is Lilith's preferred method of
dispatching her victims; she uses "killer" fingernails to slash throats and to administer direct heart massage. NIGHT ANGEL's biggest dissapiontment is its complete waste of exploitation stalwart Black in a dull, colorless role. Nevertheless, the film does feature some fairly impressive effects by
Steve Johnson, including a slimy, rubber-suited monster vaguely reminiscent of Paul Blaisdell's title beast in SHE CREATURE (1956). (Excessive violence, nudity, sexual situations.)
Cast & Details See all »
- Released: 1990
- Rating: R
- Review: Not more than a month separated the release of two 1990 films dealing with the Lilith legend of Jewish folklore--Troma's DEF BY TEMPTATION and this film, NIGHT ANGEL. Although traditionally portrayed as the murderous, demonic incarnation of pure lust, Lili… (more)