Scarecrows (1988 film)

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Scarecrows
Scarecrows (1988 film).jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byWilliam Wesley
Produced byTed Vernon
William Wesley
Cami Winikoff
Written byWilliam Wesley
Richard Jefferies
Story byWilliam Wesley
StarringTed Vernon
Michael David Simms
Richard Vidan
Kristina Sanborn
Victoria Christian
David James Campbell
B. J. Turner
Music byTerry Plumeri
CinematographyPeter Deming
Edited byWilliam Wesley
Production
company
Effigy Films
Distributed byManson International Pictures
Release date
  • September 28, 1988 (1988-09-28) (US)
Running time
83 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$425,000 (estimated)

Scarecrows is a 1988 American horror film written, produced and directed by William Wesley. The film centers around a group of mercenaries who have hijacked a plane. After one of their number escapes with the money, they land near a farmhouse surrounded by scarecrows. As the group searches the scarecrow-infested grounds and are picked off one by one by an unseen assailant, they come to realize that something evil lurks on the grounds.

Plot[edit]

Five bank robbing paramilitary mercenaries and war criminals steal three million dollars from Camp Pendleton and take two hostages, a pilot and his daughter. As the robbers fly toward Southern waters, one of the robbers steals the loot, and parachutes into a dark field. The remaining robbers land the plane, and head for a broken-down house. The house has a demonic history, which causes scarecrows guarding surrounding graves to become animate and slaughter all trespassers, dooming their victims to live on as scarecrows for all eternity.

Cast[edit]

  • Ted Vernon as Corbin
  • Michael David Simms as Curry
  • Richard Vidan as Jack
  • Kristina Sanborn as Roxanne
  • Victoria Christian as Kellie
  • David James Campbell as Al
  • B. J. Turner as Bert

Production[edit]

Filming took place in Davie, Florida.[1] Cinematography was by Peter Deming, who would go on to work on Hellraiser and Evil Dead 2.[2]

Release[edit]

Home media[edit]

Scarecrows was released on VHS by M.C.E.G./Virgin Visi on September 28, 1988.[3] The film was later released on DVD on February 19, 2007 by Jeff Films.[4] On September 11, that same year it was released by MGM and 20th Century Fox.[5] It was released on September 8, the following year by Video International. In 2011, MGM re-released the film on April 5 as a part of two separate multi-disk video collections. On September 13, later that year, the company released a "Checkpoint" version of the film. On September 4, 2012 it was released by Mill Creek Entertainment, as a part of a 12-disk "The Excellent Eighties" Collection. It was released for the first time on Blu-ray by Shout Factory on June 2, 2015. It was last released on Blue-ray by Import Vendor on February 26 the following year.[4]

Reception[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 50% based on 6 reviews, with a weighted average rating of 5.6/10.[6]

Time Out gave the film a mostly positive stating in its review for the film, "Although a little slow to get started, this better-than-average horror movie makes excellent use of its creepily-lit monsters, is reasonably well put together, and features some stomach-turning grisliness".[7] Steve Barton from Dread Central awarded the film a score of 3.5 / 5 stating, "As fun as it is over-the-top violent, Scarecrows is the perfect fit for viewers looking to strap in for some good old fashioned mindless mayhem".[8] Terror Trap.com awarded the film 3/4 stars, commending it's "claustrophobic atmosphere", slow pacing, special effects, and "allegorical plotwork".[9] HorrorNews.net praised the film, writing, "Scarecrows is easily noted as one of the more scary releases to come out of the 80's. It proves to be suspenseful and inventive in its use of effects and shadow-lit attacks. Fans of the genre will get the best experience watching it in a dimly lit room to better effect the atmosphere of this movie."[10] Andrew Smith from Popcorn Pictures gave the film 8/10 stars, writing, "Scarecrows nails the eeriness down to a tee and never once lets up in its attempts to get under your skin. You may not like it due to the limited characters and the lack of any real structured story but once you're transported into this cornfield, you'll never be able to forget about it. A true hidden gem of horror."[11]

Allmovie gave the film a positive review stating, "Tightly paced and consistently tense, this low-budget film has slick production values (making it appear more expensive than it probably was) and only falters in some laughably overwrought performances".[12] Ian Jane from DVD Talk gave the film a mixed review saying, "While the movie looks and sounds okay and is presented here in its uncut form, it hasn't aged all that well and the barebones presentation doesn't help anything. Scarecrows has got some solid gore and will definitely provide children of the 80s with a fun sense of nostalgia, but it's not a great film".[13] TV Guide awarded the film 2/5 stars, writing, "The sense of foreboding is surprisingly high, though the performances are two-dimensional at best."[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Scarecrows (1988)". DVD News Releases.com. DVD News Releases.com. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  2. ^ Brian Albright (24 October 2012). Regional Horror Films, 1958-1990: A State-by-State Guide with Interviews. McFarland. pp. 224–. ISBN 978-0-7864-7227-7.
  3. ^ "Amazon.com: Scarecrows [VHS]: Ted Vernon, Michael David Simms, Richard Vidan, Kristina Sanborn, Victoria Christian, David Campbell, B.J. Turner, Dax Vernon, Tony Santory, Phil Zenderland, Mike Balog, Don Herbert, William Wesley, Cami Winikoff, Larry Stamper, Marcus Crowder, Richard Jefferies, Stephen Gerard: Movies & TV". Amazon.com. Amazon. Retrieved 11 June 2018.
  4. ^ a b "Scarecrows (1988) - William Wesley". Allmovie.com. AllMovie. Retrieved 11 June 2018.
  5. ^ "Scarecrows (DVD)". dvdempire.com. Retrieved 2011-04-13.
  6. ^ "Scarecrows (1988) - Rotten Tomatoes". Rotten Tomatoes.com. Flixer. Retrieved 9 June 2018.
  7. ^ "Scarecrows". Time Out.com. NF. Retrieved 3 November 2014.
  8. ^ Barton, Steve. "Scarecrows (DVD) - Dread Central". Dread Central.com. Steve Barton. Retrieved 3 November 2014.
  9. ^ "Scarecrows (1988)". Terror Trap.com. Terror Trap. Retrieved 11 June 2018.
  10. ^ "Film Review: Scarecrows (1988)". HorrorNews.net. HorrorNews. Retrieved 30 June 2018.
  11. ^ Smith, Andrew. "Scarecrows (1988)". Popcorn Pictures.co.uk. Andrew Smith. Retrieved 30 June 2018.
  12. ^ Binion, Cavett. "Scarecrows (1988) - Trailers, Reviews, Synopsis, Showtimes and Cast - AllMovie". Allmovie.com. Cavett Binion. Retrieved 3 November 2014.
  13. ^ Jane, Ian. "Scarecrows : DVD Talk Review of the DVD Video". DVD Talk.com. Ian Jane. Retrieved 3 November 2014.
  14. ^ "Scarecrows - Movie Reviews and Movie Ratings". TV Guide.com. TV Guide. Retrieved 11 June 2018.

External links[edit]