Search - The Pit/Hellgate on DVD

The Pit/Hellgate
The Pit/Hellgate
Actors: Richard Alden, Cindy Auten, John Auten, Edith Bedker, Jeannie Elias
Genres: Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
R     2004     3hr 7min

Studio: Starz/sphe Release Date: 09/25/2007


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Movie Details

Actors: Richard Alden, Cindy Auten, John Auten, Edith Bedker, Jeannie Elias
Genres: Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Horror, Science Fiction, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen
DVD Release Date: 10/19/2004
Original Release Date: 10/23/1981
Theatrical Release Date: 10/23/1981
Release Year: 2004
Run Time: 3hr 7min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaDVD Credits: 2
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 10
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Great double-feature of two cult horror movies!
John Lindsey | Socorro, New Mexico USA. | 11/17/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The Pit" is a 1981 Canadian-American horror drama about an odd 12 year old boy named "Jamie" whom is picked on at school, has a obessesion with women including nude ones, he has a collection of reptiles and his only buddy is a teddy bear that speaks to him telepathically. He is also the only one who knows about a hole in the forest that contains prehistoric hairy monsters called " Trologs" that only feed on flesh, he is a friend to the creatures but doesn't have enough money on buying more meat for them, Teddy does tell him to feed them only the bad people that tormented him yet he does as people are mysteriously disappearing and the Tralalogs are getting out to feast on people. It's a strange David Lynch-like thriller with morals, interesting ideas, cool monsters, a demonic teddy bear and it's a great underrated revenge movie in the vein of " The Shining" and 1978's "Magic".

Then secondly " Hellgate" which is not bad actually but an enjoyable low-budget supernatural horror romp about an old ghost town inhabited by a evil spirits and zombies including a beautiful young lady that lures traveling males to the town only to suffer death. It does have some cool zombies, Dead Heat( 1988) style zombie animals, explosions, and nudity abound.

This double-feature from Anchor Bay is quite great with nice picture and sound quality, even though the only extra is the "poster and still gallery" for " The Pit".

Highly recommended movies to horror fans!"
Three hours of widescreen schlock!
Jeffrey Leach | Omaha, NE USA | 10/15/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Once upon a time, a young (but rapidly aging, sadly) schlock film lover by the name of Jeff Leach discovered DVD. And life was good. Then Jeff discovered discs released by an entity named MGM that contained two cheesefests on a single DVD. And life was better. One day, while Jeff rubbed his hands together and cackled with glee over the idea that he could watch two pictures with Shelley Winters--"What's the Matter with Helen?" and "Whoever Slew Auntie Roo?" as an example--in a single day, he heard a voice come down from on high. The voice said in commanding tones, "You have done well with this discovery, but there is another truth. Go forth and find the double feature Anchor Bay discs. If you thought MGM's discs were schlocky, you haven't seen anything yet." Jeff wondered at what he had heard. He went forth into the world to find these marvels, suspecting that perhaps the voice was mistaken. What was this madness called Anchor Bay? Who dared attempt to match the marvels wrought by MGM? Infidels! Yet the truth the voice spoke of was exactly that, truth, and Jeff discovered these fabled discs. The truth shall set you free!

Free to have your mind filled with images of pure schlock, that is! "The Pit" and "Hellgate" do indeed fill a single disc in Anchor Bay's "Drive In" DVD series. Two films. Three plus hours of cheese. Here we go!

"The Pit," certainly one of the weirdest films to grace the silver screen, stars helmet haired Sammy Snyders as Jamie Benjamin, a supremely troubled pre-teen who has made a most interesting discovery out in the woods. A pit exists, you see, a pit that contains odd little troll shaped creatures with a hunger for meat. When we first meet up with Jamie, we see him pushing a bully into the pit. Then we get the backstory. Jamie is a problem child, a real weirdo that his teachers and neighbors view with suspicion and alarm. Even his parents worry about him. It makes sense. Jamie carries on conversations with his teddy bear, owns a bunch of slithery reptiles, and has an obsession with girls that would make a porn addict sit up and take notice. Watch what he does to his sultry school librarian in the hope of getting a few cheesecake snapshots! Sick, I tell you, sick! Then there is the attention Jamie heaps on his babysitter Sandy O'Reilly (Jeannie Elias). He watches her while she sleeps, asks really disturbing questions, and leaves messages on the mirror in the bathroom while she takes a shower. Paging David Berkowitz!

Flip the disc over and watch "Hellgate," a movie that greatly disappoints when compared to the wacky weirdness of "The Pit." Note to self: when you've sunk to watching horror films starring Ron Palillo of "Welcome Back, Kotter" fame, it's time to hang up the remote. Yes, "Hellgate" stars Horshack as Matt, a graduate student who stumbles over a horrible little amusement park type town with a few of his brain dead friends. What happens? Oh, not much. The owner of the park found some magical crystal that initially turns goldfish into exploding monstrosities, but he manages to master the power of this object and thus resurrect his dead daughter Josie (Abigail Wolcott). His daughter then haunts the roads around the town, luring in travelers for a little bit of lovin' and a whole lotta dyin'! Course, she didn't count on meeting up and falling in love with the hunk o' burnin' love that is Ron Palillo! This unexpected romance leads to all sorts of nonsense, some of which actually involves a bit of violence, but the movie mostly tries to play for laughs. Watch for the hoofers shaking their skirts in the dancehall! Watch for ham-fisted acting and dumb dialogue! Watch that dude spend half the film sharpening objects to challenge the owner of Hellgate only to die immediately when he shows up to do battle!

"The Pit" is by far the better picture on the disc. Snyders is an odd duck made all the odder by a script obviously written by someone who took the brown blotter at Woodstock. We get a little girl calling Jamie a "funny person" not once but twice, meat, a teddy bear that commands the living to kill, and some serious gore when the troll like creatures go on a killing spree! Wait, there's more! We get an old lady in a wheelchair dumped in the pit! We get Sandy's boyfriend falling into the pit as though he couldn't possibly have seen a hole in the ground the size of Australia! We get a conclusion taken straight out of the Twilight Zone! Oh yeah! Schlockfest central here, folks! How could a lame movie like "Hellgate" compare with such a film? Easy--it can't. Placing these two films side by side is like comparing the intellectual powers of Anna Nicole Smith and Stephen Hawking. Can't be done.

Anchor Bay does a nice job with both movies in terms of picture quality. Both are in widescreen. While no one expects anything on these double feature discs in the extras department, we do get a poster and still gallery on "The Pit." We get nothing in the way of extras for "Hellgate" unless you count the heartache you'll carry with you for days afterwards. After watching the disc, I began wondering about that voice I heard telling me to go and find this DVD. Was it the voice of the Supreme Being, or the voice of Jamie's teddy bear? I'm not sure, but I've got a sudden craving to lure my enemies into a forest in the hopes that I'll find a pit there...

Two cult classic gems, one DVD
The Straw Man | Aloof October on April's Birthday | 08/06/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I would love to know what committee at Anchor Bay Entertainment sits down and decides on what movies they will release and why. With that being stated, this double movie feature from the horror vault of Anchor Bay is awesome. There are two cult classics here that are both great for the horror/campy/strange/atypical lover in you!

The movies are as follows:

THE PIT (1981) is about a boy twelve years of age named Jamie Benjamin who looks like a younger version of Beck (two turn tables and a microphone). It is safe to proclaim Jamie is a bit eccentric to say the very least. Jamie is the victim of jokes and ridiculed by peers and adults. Also he doesn't have any friends, except for his good pal Teddy, who just happens to be a "Teddy Bear". Unlike other plush animals, Teddy is able to talk to Jamie via telepathy. Teddy makes many suggestions to Jamie about how to "approach things" in life, the advice isn't always pro-social. Jamie also knows about a strange pit in the woods near his house where four to five trolls live. Jamie also has a strange obsession with sex, which he tries to display with his babysitter. Once Jamie is pushed to his limit, which isn't that far of a trip, he figures out the perfect form of revenge for everyone that has ever made a fool out of him.

The Pit is hands down one of the most bizarre, peculiar, disturbing and creepy movies I have ever seen. I wouldn't say it is scary, just weird and eerie. It is all the elements together that make it so odd: trolls, talking teddy bear, Jamie's behaviors, ghosts, characters who almost seem moot and the jovial music played throughout the film that really doesn't fit. The movie itself almost seems like a mixture of an after school special + Grimm's fairy tale + fable + rejects Muppets, no jiving. This motion picture should be watched just for the "I can't believe what I am watching aspect". Overall, The Pit is a cult classic that will make the viewer ask, "Where did the inspiration for this come from"?

HELLGATE (1980) is about three friends telling ghost stories/legends in a log cable while they wait for their friend Matt. The ghost story/legend that sticks out is about a tourist attraction town called Hellgate that closed down thirty years prior. This happened when the owner of Hellgate (who is a diet John Astin) watched his daughter being murdered by a biker gang. The legend states that this tourist attraction is now haunted and it is taboo to go there now. Hellgate is only several miles from where the friends are staying. Meanwhile, Matt is on his way to meet his friends when he sees an arcane and beautiful girl walking along the road named Josie. The interesting factor is that Josie is the owner of Hellgate's daughter who was killed many years ago. Josie has this Tori Amos thing going on about her and seems very pale when Matt picks her up in his car. So Tori, I mean Josie brings Matt back to Hellgate and tries to lure him with sex. To make a long story short, Matt leaves Hellgate without Josie and meets up with his friends. Matt and his friends then go back to save Josie, rather Matt wants to and his friends are just there for the cheap thrill. Will Matt and his friends make it out of the haunted town of Hellgate or not? Will Josie come with them or not? Is Tori, I mean Josie good or evil?

Hellgate is very cheesy and has a wonderful B movie quality about it. I was laughing out loud at some of the special effects and loop holes in plot that were so big "you can fly a spaceship through". There are zombies in this movie which is almost always a positive in any horror movie, in Hellgate it is definitely a good thing. I wouldn't say this movie is scary, but there are some creepy moments due to some lighting and situations. The characters are all pretty much flat and one dimensional. Consequently, that is alright since I was expecting anything wonderful in the "character development" department when I was watching this movie. Overall, a nice little horror flick that gives you a bit of everything: zombies, blood, nudity, interesting scenery and a zombie turtle (don't ask).

The DVD itself is dual sided and the only special features are a poster/still gallery for THE PIT, there is no special features for HELLGATE. Out of the two movies, THE PIT is definitely more unique, but HELLGATE will provide wonderful entertainment. I found this to be a wonderful investment in the DVD department and see myself watching both of these movies again. I am glad Anchor Bay is able to restore these lost gems and present them to a whole new generation of viewers."
The Pit is watchable and Hellgate is unwatchable
John Current | Corpus Christi,TX | 02/24/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)

"The Pit is an odd black-horror comedy that feels like a David Lynch movie mixed with a goosebump episode with a little boy named Jamie Benjamin who has an obsession with sex and then befriends a group of monsters called Trogs that eat people and then for revenge he feeds them the neighborhood bullies and even his babysitter. The Pit is filmed in Wisconsin on a low-budget with an unknown cast. This is not a kids movie because of the violence and nudity.

Hellgate is a waste of time with Ron Palillo(Horseshack from Welcome Back Kotter)visting a ghost town and battling zombie-like creatures. They should have put The Pit with a better movie."