Movie Review: From a Whisper to a Scream (1987)

Synopsis: After his niece is executed for murder, a local librarian tells a reporter about the evil encompassing the town since its founding after the Civil War through a series of stories.

Who's in it? The movie stars Vincent Price, Clu Gulager, Terry Kiser, Martine Beswick and Megan McFarland.


Review: I came across this movie a few days ago and, mostly because it had Vincent Price in it, I decided to add it to my library. My wife and I watched it this past weekend and, overall, I thought it was an OK film.

To be honest, my expectations weren't very high when we started watching this movie. As I correctly assumed, while Price was the top billed star, his role was limited to providing a somewhat weak filler to the various stories being told. However, despite that, I did think there were things about this movie that really stood out.

I think the thing I liked most about this film is the way it managed to have some stories that were genuinely creepy without going overboard with the sex and gore (a mistake many similar movies make today). The acting in those stories, while not great, was good enough to make them believable even when the 1980s-level special effects didn't.

Of the four stories, I think the third one, involving a love story between a carnival sideshow glass eater (Ron Brooks) and his girlfriend (Didi Lanier) was my favorite. This was both because it was a somewhat unique story and it managed to be creepy to the point it made even me squirm a bit.

I also found I liked the first story, involving a man (Gulager) who is obsessed with one of his coworkers (McFarland) to the point he is even attracted to her after he murders her. The ending was a little dumb but the overall story was definitely intriguing, especially since there was also something odd happening between him and his sister (Miriam Byrd-Nethery). In fact, his too-close relationship with his sister was probably more disturbing than the coworker obsession.

Final Opinion: Overall, I have to say the movie was better than I was expecting and ended up being fun to watch. I'd recommend giving it a try.

My Grade: B

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