Movie Review: “Ouijageist” from Dudley, UK, as awful as it gets

The single mom (Lois Wilkinson) has seen enough — accidents, deaths, a baby imperiled, a Jack Russell terrier alarmed at the spooky noises coming out of this “Witchboard” he dug up in the back yard.

Something supernatural is happening in her new flat. Mum (Lesley Scoble) puts down her “cuppa” and chirps, “I’ll ring Father West. Ask him to pop round!”

Father West is scared and attacked when the trash compactor eyeball monster sticks its head out the sink. Better fetch the Bishop (Nigel Buckley)! He’s got all the answers.

“The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist,” he says, then pauses for a beat. “‘The Usual Suspects,’ 1995. Of course, they were BORROWING it from a higher source.”

“Ever see ‘Poltergeist?'” Very informative, he insists. But when he comes over to intervene, “Don’t expect ‘Power of Christ commands you/Father Merrin stuff.”

Isn’t that “The Exorcist?”

“TWO points,” bubbles the Bishop. He’s gotten ALL his knowledge of demonic possession from the talking pictures. But with the turn this one is taking, I mutter in frustration that he leaves out the killer quote, the one that will make this incompetently-written, ineptly-acted horror show memorable.

“No one ever expects…the ‘OUIJAGEIST!”

“Ouijageist” –– yes the title’s a mashup — is a disastrously daft horror tale of a possessed whispering, muttering Witchboard “game” that makes its way from the Swiss Alps to Dudley, in the English Midlands.

It’s positively dizzy in its clumsiness. A baby crawls into a bathroom where a scalding hot tub is running. The door slams behind her, and two women slap on the door in frustration, expecting the BABY to open it.

That Bishop, whose own priest was given the willies and fled on “a retreat” after seeing and being spat-upon by a MONSTER upon visiting, chuckles and tries to impress on one and all how URGENT things are.

“I’ll go over tomorrow,” he says with a hint of “there, there.” “This needs to be looked into as SOON as possible!”

Right. As in “Right NOW.” Not “Oh, pop in tomorrow.”

The acting’s often amateurish, with clumsy line-readings, unconvincing expressions of terror. I’m not singling anybody out, but if you’ve just lost your best friend, almost lost your baby and your ex has just been possessed and spat up hot coffee on you, a little more than an “Oh, bother” look is called for, luv.

A stop-motion effect showing a garden hose with a malevolent mind of its own looks like something we’d see in a student film (or Ray Harryhausen outtake).

It’s never “good,” but the awfulness is amusing, here and there. But only here and there.

star

MPAA Rating: unrated, horror violence, profanity

Cast: Lois Wilkinson, Lesley Scoble, Roger Shepherd,  Nigel Buckley

Credits: Directed by John R. Walker, script by Darrell Buxton, Steve Hardy. A Wildeye release.

Running time: 1:21

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