The Cryptkeeper Is Turning In His Grave
Sky | New York | 06/25/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Look at any of my other reviews of the Tales From The Crypt series (I've reviewed them all)...they all get 5-stars (with the exception of Bordello of Blood).
Demon Knight, the first Tales From The Crypt feature film, is also 5-stars. It was the exception to the rule...the rule being that the Tales From The Crypt episodes would be 1/2 hour shorts that mirrored their EC Comics versions of the stories. Demon Knight got full length feature film treatment and it was well deserved.
Bordello of Blood, the second feature film, was a complete failure. It took a great formula (1/2 hour shorts) and added senseless length and detail to a story that could have made a great 1/2 hour episode.
Ritual was scheduled as the follow-up to Bordello, but when Bordello failed in the theatres, the full length theatre release of Ritual was scratched. In fact, the Tales people abandoned their commitment to Ritual, but apparently the legal eagles found a way to keep the Tales From The Crypt ties to the franchise for DVD.
It is clear by the introduction to the movie by a poorly puppeteered and lip-synced Cryptkeeper that the EC Comics guys and HBO were not involved in Ritual. The Cryptkeeper intro segment is recklessly spliced into a movie that really was never approved as a Tales From The Crypt story. And the Cryptkeeper doesn't even show up at the end of the movie as he without fail does in any other Tales feature. In fact, the movie isn't even based on an EC Comic as all the Tales From The Crypt moving picture stories are....Ritual is a remake of 1943's I Walked With A Zombie.
So here is Ritual on DVD. A Tales From The Crypt episode that might have been fair if included at 30 minutes in length in the awesome series. But it just doesn't even qualify. It is not a Tales From the Crypt, Haunt of Fear or Vault of Horror comic book interpretation. Ritual is an RKO Pictures release that is simply a Tales From The Crypt rip off that is mediocre at best resembling nothing of the terrific Tales From The Crypt franchise that was such a big hit with HBO.
Pass, pass, pass on this. Wait for it on cable. Wait for it on the Sci-Fi Channel. Regardless of how you wait for it...just wait for it.
Not spectacular but pretty darn good!
I. Barber | NY | 05/07/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"First let me say that I think I'm the biggest Tales from the Crypt fan alive, so of course I had to have this movie. Ritual has been out on dvd for several years in other countries, I'm honestly not sure why it took so long to get it here. Perhaps the success of the television show's dvds helped spur Dimension into releasing it (or maybe it's because I emailed them like a million times lol). At any rate it's finally here, and I must say I actually enjoyed it a lot more than I expected to. It's definitely more of a low budget movie than Demon Knight or Bordello of Blood, but that doesn't detract too much from the entertainment value. The storyline is good, the action is good and the one scene of real gore is done quite well. I cannot in good conscience recommend that anyone pay $30 for it, but if you can nab yourself a cheaper copy, I don't think you will be too disappointed. There is really nothing scary about the movie, but it's a bit better than Bordello of Blood that's for sure! Plus the new Cryptkeeper segments at the beginning of the movie and after the ending credits are pretty enjoyable. And if all of us fans actually buy the movie, who knows what doors that could open for the Crypt?!"
Not the same ole' crypt, but still not bad!!!
Neil Kloster | Dekalb, IL | 05/05/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is not the same formula/format as the previous two (Demon knight & Bordello of Blood). But that is not to say that it is bad. This movie is more of a voodoo thriller than a horror movie... but it still very much holds your attention (more ways than one!) and stil delivers the goods. Tim Curry is excellent in this movie, and Jen Grey... well, just see the movie!
Now this movie is not without faults, but hell! ITs a DTV release! So..sheesh! Plus the cryptkeeper is added in only the beginning and end. But as a rasta-man version.
Overall, I say give it a shot. Its not the same... but its not too bad either!
THE THIRD FILM IN THE SERIES IS THE THIRD BEST OF THE THREE
fmwaalex | Austin, TX USA | 11/13/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"TALES FROM THE CRYPT
Do you remember a little show called "Tales from the Crypt" that was running back in the day; yeah those were some good days. Days got better when the show brought forth a movie called "Demon Knight", one of my all time favorite movies ever. Then a second movie called "Bordello of Blood" which while not as good as the first was still very fun. The years passed and nothing came from the show other than the series being released on DVD, until this movie came out. This of course unlike the other two was a straight to DVD movie and had some good names behind it. I was excited when this came out and was all over it, it turned out ok but is the least in the three films.
The story is about a doctor who is fired by the hospital after making a last minute call costing someone their life. But that does not stop her from being hired by a wealthy guy in Jamaica to care for his little brother. Once there she learns of his illness and believes it to be what the last doctor said it was, but that doctor died on the job. Still that does not keep him from believing he has been cursed and is becoming a zombie. As the story moves on people around her become more and more mysterious and the tales of zombies begin to look more and more real. She starts to not only be followed but attacked as well; she begins to believe at that point.
Writer/director Avi Nesher along with co writers Rob Cohen and Inez Wallace adapted this film into a new screenplay based on the film "I Walked with a Zombie". While I can certainly see where they were going with this but it fails in most parts. In fact the film is a bit of a disappointment because of its association with Tales from the Crypt. This film would have faired much better on its own but because of the Tales association people expected more. This being the third film in the series it also turned out to be third in the rankings; in fact the order in which they were released is the order in which I like them. "Demon Knight" is one of my all time favorite films ever and while "Bordello of Blood" was no where near as good it was fun and entertaining. This however feels like an episode from the show that got turned into a feature film.
The film does manage to be good though and the Crypt keeper shows up at the beginning and end sporting a Jamaican accent. His time is short lived and not as great as past appearances but it was cool to see him again. Jennifer Grey is good enough in the lead role but the rest of the cast seems to outshine the star. Craig Sheffer, Daniel Lapaine, Kristen Wilson, and Gabriel Casseus are all good in their roles and are very believable. But it is Tim Curry that is my favorite here as he flawlessly makes this film more fun then it should be. The entire cast is good and well placed but the film is missing that one thing, what ever it may be, that would make it really good. The writing perhaps is lacking or perhaps the direction, maybe both but the acting is solid.
This is far from a classic and is not even the best in the series but it is good enough to own if found at a pawn shop or something. If you are like me and have to have everything Tales from the Crypt related then this is a must by. For a film that was planned at one point for a big theatrical push but the second film's lack of success at the box office had it scrapped, it is good. Whether this film was originally intended as that film or not makes no defense, it is a part of the Tales family so I accept it.