Pumpkinhead

  • 1988
  • Movie
  • R
  • Horror

The fairly promising directorial debut of Oscar-winning special-effects man Stan Winston (THE TERMINATOR; ALIENS; PREDATOR), PUMPKINHEAD is an old-fashioned, atmospheric, moralistic tale that presents horror steeped in rural folklore and legend. Ed (Lance Henriksen) is a kindly, widowed farmer who runs a general store and who loves his 10-year-old son more...read more

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The fairly promising directorial debut of Oscar-winning special-effects man Stan Winston (THE TERMINATOR; ALIENS; PREDATOR), PUMPKINHEAD is an old-fashioned, atmospheric, moralistic tale that presents horror steeped in rural folklore and legend. Ed (Lance Henriksen) is a kindly, widowed

farmer who runs a general store and who loves his 10-year-old son more than anything in the world. Tragedy strikes, however, when the boy is accidentally run over by a motorcyclist and left to die. Blinded by hatred and the desire for vengeance, Ed goes to the remote cabin of an ancient witch and

begs her to bring his boy back to life. That she cannot do, but Ed also knows the legend of Pumpkinhead, a vicious demon that can be summoned to avenge wrongful death. Having worked closely with director James Cameron, Winston has a strong visual sense and a surprisingly good feel for character

development. The relationship between Ed and his son is especially effective, encouraging viewers to feel just as vindictive as the father. Winston then turns the tables on his audience, however, by showing Ed as he calms down, has second thoughts, and then tries to stop the terror he created. The

message: Revenge is wrong. Not a common theme in modern horror. Unfortunately, Winston begins to lose control in the film's latter half when the monster is on the rampage. By now the "Ten Little Indians" method of killing characters one at a time has gotten so stale that no matter how impressive

the monster is, the resulting sequence is inevitably tedious.

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  • Released: 1988
  • Rating: R
  • Review: The fairly promising directorial debut of Oscar-winning special-effects man Stan Winston (THE TERMINATOR; ALIENS; PREDATOR), PUMPKINHEAD is an old-fashioned, atmospheric, moralistic tale that presents horror steeped in rural folklore and legend. Ed (Lance… (more)

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