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Race with the Devil
Urlaub in der Hölle

USA 1975
produced by
Wes Bishop, Paul Maslansky (executive) for Saber Productions
directed by Jack Starrett
starring Peter Fonda, Warren Oates, Loretta Swit, Lara Parker, R.G. Armstrong, Clay Tanner, Carol Blodgett, Phil Hoover, Ricci Ware, Paul A. Partain, James N.Harrell, Karen Miller, Arkey Blue, Jack Starrett, Wes Bishop, Joyce King, Tommy Splittgerber
written by Wes Bishop, Lee Frost, music by Leonard Rosenman

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Roger (Peter Fonda) and Frank (Warren Oates) take their wives (Loretta Swit, Lara Parker) on a trip to the country in their new fully equipped 22 ft van. But already at their first stop, they wintess a ritual murder committed by some Satanists. Thing is, the Satanists catch them watching them and come after them ... and only just do our heroes make it to the next village, where they report everything to the Sheriff (R.G.Armstrong) - but also receive a threat from teh Satanists.

At their next stop, an official camping ground, their dog is hanged and some ratlesnakes are left in their van - and they figure the Satanists have followed them and they find tehmselves on the run, soon trying to shake off car after car that tries to drive them off the street, with nothing but a pumpgun to defend themselves.

Finally they think they have shaken their pursuers off - about time too, since their van is almost wrekced - and they make an overnight stop somewhere in the woods - when they find themselves in the center of a burning circle, with the Satanists closing in when ... when the movie is over. Good night, everybody.


Very silly and simplistic horror film that mixes motives from the classic Deliverance with with a bit of Satanism, but replaces all atmosphere a movie like that would need (rather desperately, too) with a carchase. Apart from this carchase, which is at least well-done, the film suffers from terrible pacing and a wagonload of scenes that simply do not help to advance the plot in any which way. Plus, the ending is completely unsatisfying and robs the film (and the viewer) of a much-needed finale.

The worst aspect about Race with the Devil though are its horribly old-fashioned gender stereotypes (and believe me, normally I'm not even very picky about things like this): While the men are regular he-men, heroes who are resourceful in each and every situation - who are for no apparent narrative reason depicted as dirt bike racers -, the women are simply here to scream on command and rely on their knights in shining armour, and the only thing they ever do in this film is stealing two books out of the library. And this aspect of the film is played up to no uncertain amount, until it gets nothing short of annoying. I mean, hasn't anybody in the 1970's heard of women's lib?

A complete waste of time that for some reason refuses to vanish into obscurity.


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
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




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


A Killer Conversation

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

out now on DVD