1983 was not a bad year for horror, but it was a little bit of a letdown because of the big names from 1980 – 1982. As far as the bigger horror movies of 1983, we have Christine, Cujo, Psycho II, Sleepaway Camp and Videodrome. Most people would probably even consider most of them to be lesser knowns, but I think that most genre fans are very well acquainted with these films.
Here are just a couple of underrated horror films from 1983.
Six young actresses auditioning for a movie role at a remote mansion are targeted by a mysterious masked murderer.
Director: Richard Ciupka
Writer: Robert Guza Jr. (screenplay)
Stars: John Vernon, Samantha Eggar and Linda Thorson
You really do have to watch this one with a grain of salt. It was the 80s and a lot of films had this notion that people just did dumb things, so they always to use these actions in films. A perfect example would be how teh characters always feel the need to split up when faced with a killer.
Curtains does contain one of the best visual scenes that I have ever seen in an 80s horror movie outside of the big franchises and that is the scene where the killer chases the girl in ice skates with a scythe. If you have not scene this scene, then at least watch the film just for that. It is frightening.
Of course, with the good always comes the bad. In this one, the killer spends more time on their back than chasing people. They are constantly being knocked down by various objects including dolls, kicks and 2x4s. They really have the label of the wimpiest killer to ever grace the slasher genre.
Curtains is also a slow movie, but not an entirely bad one. The main problem with the film is the horrible ending, but the film also does not hold up too well. It may be a tough watch if this is your first time.
One Dark Night (AKA Mausoleum)
As part of an initiation into a club called the Sisters, a young girl must spend the night in a mausoleum.
Director: Tom McLoughlin
Writers: Tom McLoughlin, Michael Hawes
Stars: Meg Tilly, Melissa Newman and Robin Evans
Perhaps best known for starring Meg Tilly, One Dark Night it does have very capable acting throughout with Tilly doing a great job. The star of the film may just be the musical score though partnered together with the claustrophobic atmosphere and the gothic mood. The mood of this film lends itself to being a nice film to watch during the Halloween season (assuming that you can find it, which is not easy).