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Dark Echo
Dark Echoes / Deep Echo

Austria/Yugoslavia 1977
produced by
George Robotham for Forty First Avala Film, Benedict Productions
directed by George Robotham
starring Karin Dor, Joel Fabiani, Wolfgang Brook, Hanna Hertelendy, John Robotham, Norman Marshall, Frederick Tully, James Dobson, Alex Davion, Neda Arneric, Goran Sultanovic, Janez Vrhovec, Damir Mejovsek, Mira Nikolic, Dusan Tadic, Vladan Zivkovic, Demeter Bitenc, Melisa Antic, Tanja Boskovic, Dragan Bjelogrlic
written by George Robotham, music by Sanja Ilic, Slobodan Markovic

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Someone is killing the fishermen of a small Austrian village by a lake, and since the local chief of police Woelke (Wolfgang Brook) isn't much of a mystery solver, he brings in his friend, psychic Bill Cros (Joel Fabiani), to do some investigating for him. Bill soon finds out the whole killing spree has to do with captain Gohr (Norman Marshall) whose boat sunk on the lake 100 years ago, and who was blamed for the disaster. Now it seems the captain has returned and is out to kill the descendants of those who were on board with him. David finds an old mystic, Ms Ziemler (Hanna Hertelendy), who is obviously one of Gohr's descendants and who has been instrumental in bringing him back to life. However, at one point the (by now terribly decayed) captain attacks her minions, and eventually he even beheads her.

Bill tries his best to catch up with the captain, but has enough time to become friendly with a local journalist, Lisa Brueckner (Karin Dor), but she's on Gohr's killlist as well, and eventually she is almost killed by him before he is scared away by a mirror. You see, the captain was very handsome, so his decayed mirror image hurts his pride and scares the living shit out of him. Bill soon finds a way to use this against him, so he arms a gang of youngsters with mirrors and has them drive Gohr over a cliff, where he falls off into the lake to his death ... though I'm not 100% sure you can kill an undead this way.

 

A horror movie that fails to convince on almost all levels: It's about a zombie that can be fought using mirrors - I mean, really? But that wouldn't even matter so much if the film had a decent buildup of suspense ... only it hasn't. Instead it spends way too much time establishing what a cool guy the lead character is (supposed to be) and that he likes women and cocktails. The murders on the other hand happen at random at first, and when the mystic is thrown into the mix about halfway through, it's as if she was a device to kickstart an already dead story - but only with limited success, her actual meaning to the narrative of the film remains murky. However, all of this might still have worked if it was carried by an atmospheric direction - but unfortunately, director Robotham fails to make any good use of the impressive Austrian landscapes at hand, uses his camera merely to record the action at hand rather than to build upon it.

Not really worth your time.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
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shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD