Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Warner Archive Pick of the Week: MY DEMON LOVER (1987) ""

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Warner Archive Pick of the Week: MY DEMON LOVER (1987)

A rather scruffy, bohemian, obnoxious and somehow charismatic Scott Valentine plays the title role in this nearly forgotten 80s gem. He, of course of FAMILY TIES fame, but I have to admit that I had honestly almost forgotten his character from that show. Truth be told, I had somehow crossed him in my mind with Skippy so I was quite surprised when he first showed up on screen. Soon though, I began to recall his very Sly Stallone-esque turn on FT and it all came flooding back. I am sort of fascinated by actors from the 80s as they often seem to get forgotten and this saddens me a bit. Actors from all eras being forgotten makes me quite melancholy, but the 80s, a time in which I came of age stands out particularly for me. The way Hollywood is always moving on to the newest "it" actor has always been troubling to me. So many very talented actors fall by the wayside because of this practice. I digress, though as the dwindling of Scott Valentine's career may seem for most not a huge loss. I will say that I do enjoy seeing those filmic moments when lower level actors are given their moment to shine. NIGHT OF THE CREEPS always springs to mind, with Jason Lively and Jill Whitlow as two of the leads. Anyway, moving on....
MY DEMON LOVER seems a film with a small cult following of sorts. It has surfaced on a few guest lists I've run on my site and I can see, to a certain degree, why it has. First off, it's a horror comedy and those tend to resonate with folks. It has a sort of kinship with a movie like BEETLEJUICE(which is predates by a year). Secondly, it is a bastion of practical effects in the wake of the glorious work of masters like Rick Baker and Rob Bottin. John Caglione Jr. worked on the FX in this film and I rather enjoyed them. His previous efforts include FX work on such classics as BASKETCASE, FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 2, C.H.U.D.. THE BLOB('88), DICK TRACY and on and on. He is still very active today.
The plot of MY DEMON LOVER concerns a love story between Valentine and the very charming Michelle Little(who sadly never had much of a leading lady career). It's reveled early that Valentine's character has trouble with transforming into "something" when he becomes sexually aroused. Coupled with this plotline is another which involves a man/creature deemed "The Mangler" killing women all over New York City. You might be able to see where this is going, but it's an enjoyable enough ride especially for the period depiction of NYC. This is the pre-cleaned up New York and I really do miss it in films these days. Many familiar NY locales are featured throughout the film including in it's classic 80s-style love montage which even has the audacity to steal THE shot from MANHATTAN. Watch for classic character actors such as Larry 'Bud' Melman(Calvert DeForest), Lin Shaye, and other faces you'll recognize.
Kudos to Warner Archive for putting this out in a nice widescreen transfer. May it be rediscovered by many!!
Buy it  HERE.

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