Director: Robert Fuest
Borgnine, Eddie Albert, William Shatner
A devil-worship covern leader
searches for a book that will free his followers.
This 1975 film,
which also features
Alienís Tom Skerritt and John Travolta in his
first movie role, concerns a coven led by Satanist Jonathan Corbis (Borgnine,
surprisingly good), the reincarnation of a 17th century witch.
He is attempting to retrieve a long-lost book kept hidden for centuries by
members of the Preston family, so that he can free the souls of his
followers, who are trapped in limbo. Itís an unconvincing yarn, given
energy by director Robert Fuest (director of the Doctor Phibes movies and
some of the best episodes of The Avengers). The film is enlivened
by some decent performances, and boasts some very nice make-up work.
Devilís Rain is presented in letterboxed format, in a ratio of about
2.35:1. Thereís a tendency for splice marks to appear on cuts, however,
so it obviously isnít framed correctly. Nor is it 16:9 enhanced. The
film has strong colours, and is generally stable. Thereís a lot of hiss
and crackle to contend with, and the print has minor dirt speckles
throughout, but the widescreen image makes this a vast improvement on
youíve not seen The Devilís Rain, and have managed to avoid the
tantalising photoís that graced several key publications of the 70s and
80s, youíre still likely to have the filmís memorable finale spoiled
by the discís packaging and menu screens on this disc. Likewise, avoid
the theatrical trailer on the disc until youíve seen the film.