The Midnight Hour (1985)


Directed by: Jack Bender

Written by: Willaim Bleich


Lee Montgomery .... Phil Grenville
Shari Belafonte .... Melissa Cavender
Jonelle Allen .... Lucinda Cavender
Jonna Lee .... Sandy Matthews
LeVar Burton .... Vinnie Davis
Peter DeLuise .... Mitch Crandall
Kevin McCarthy .... Judge Crandall
Cindy Morgan .... Vicky Jensen
DeDee Pfeiffer .... Mary Masterson
Dick Van Patten .... Martin Grenville
Mark Blankfield .... The Ghoul

Release Date: Made for TV: November 1, 1985




A group of highschool friends accidentally wake up the dead on Halloween night with a ritual at a graveyard while going to a party which includes vampires ghouls and werewolves.
However, they arrive at the party and other places too where they kill or turn other people into vampires or ghouls.
One of the teens named Phil (Lee Montgomery) discovers that things are not normal as they encounter some of these vampires and werewolves and tries to go to the police about it but they don't believe him.
He gets some help by a cheerleader girl he met before going to the party as she tries to help him put the undead back in their graves.


The beginning seems to breeze off nicely with a paper delivery boy fixing his bike as well as putting a Halloween mask on him and then briefly showing a creepy pic with the opening credits along with him doing his delivery tossing papers.
There's also a moment with the character Martin Greenville working at his dental place with a client and being distracted talking to his son Phil before heading off to school which looked pretty painful with the client keeping her mouth open while he cleans her teeth and imagining if he makes a mistake on them for being distracted while doing this which isn't a good thing but the humor with this moment looked pretty good.
Then we see the teenage kids before class starting playing hangman on the blackboard and other fun stuff like that wanting to join in making out that school is fun especially while looking forward to their own Halloween party.
The setting in the graveyard scene's looked still and silent and it was alot of fun to watch these teens goof off while hanging out there for a brief second with one of them named Melissa Cavendar doing the chant from the book they stole in order to raise the dead in which this keeps you in suspense wondering what will happen since things are so still when she reads the words out loud and then nothing happens with them goofing around again like typical teenagers. I just found this pretty amusing since it's too soon for any of this to happen just yet.
Then after they leave we spot some close up camera shots on some gravestones in which this leaves you a creepy impression that something is about to happen and it just does giving it a total 80's horror feel to all of this with zombie's rising up from the grave, mist floating around, explosions as well as spotting a werewolf howling away nearby and acting menacing. We also spot a black vampiress along with a clean cut looking cheerleader. I mean this film has the works for what you want in a horror flick taking place on Halloween. This was my favourite scene to watch and a real pleaser for horror fans on these kinds of subjects. It almsot looked similar to watch you'd see in a scene from Michael Jackson's music video "Thriller" or the cult classic zombie spoof Return of the Living Dead.
Then the comedy into this film comes in a good fashion as there's a zombie wandering around the dark streets entering a home where the party starts as the teens there thinks it's just a costume and of course this zombie acts like a ham joining in. I got a bit of a chuckle while watching this since it's nice to add some humor to these sorts of characters. We even spot this zombie eating popcorn as well as making out with a female zombie which was also mistaken for someone in a costume as well. I mean this couldn't get any better folks.
Yet not to confuse the viewers in case they think that this may be a plain comedy only spoofing on horror the horror cuts in once again as we spot a zombie peeking at a window of a neighbor's home owned by the obnoxious Judge Crandell. Then things are dark and silent when he steps outside hearing some sounds from his yard as this almost gives you the chills that something is going to happen and then it suddenly does with this huge looking zombie crashing a fence over him scruffly saying "GUILTY" in which there was great sound effects on this voice speaking total horror here. This moment looked good and dark even if that one liner was humoress but of course lots of horror flicks during that time period uses dark humor like this.
In another scene there's a man walking his dogs and they run away in which this was supposed to look creepy and of course a werewolf crashes through a pet store window slaying at him. The costume effects looked pretty good but it didn't make me jump at all like this was supposed to do. Yet this was a TV movie so we can't expect to have real jumping moments when it comes to that in case any young one's tune in.
While at the party it's interesting when we spot the head vampiress Lucinda Cavender staring at her ancestor Melissa Cavender and slowly approaching towards her when we spot her neck in which this was a good attention grabber knowing what Lucinda was after. There's even a shot on her lips about to open as we wait impatiently to see her fangs but yet Melissa's friend cuts in to talk to her which is a disappointment since we hope to see the terror on this woman being revealed. Don't fret folks we see this eventually.
Another favourite scene of mine is when Melissa and Lucinda perform a song and a dance at the party which had another great feel to this film during it's time period when breakdancing was popular as this almost looked like a tribute to Michael Jackson's music video "Thriller" It made you want to join in and dance with them.
We even spot the fellow who was attacked by a werewolf lying on the street but yet we spot that his hands are claws and his dogs are sniffing him out and then growling when he gets up but boy does this shot on him look super creepy.
There's some nice touches with a preppy looking guy named Phil Grenville having a romance with the ghostly cheerleader from the 50's named Sandy Matthews as the writing on here looked pretty decent showing that not everyone whom was woken up from the dead is bad. Plus a nice scary moment is when they make out in their vehicle it's so silent but then a werewold spies on them and tries to attack them adding alot of terror and suspense here while watching this. But not overly terror since it is a TV movie like I mentioned before.
There's many other great struggling moments with Phil and Sandy trying to escape from the creatures of the night at the party and the horror really turns out to be incredibly serious here as well as nice ghoulish lighting shots on the whole town plagues with these sorts doing crazy things while they are cruisng around in their vehicle.
Some nice lighitng effects while Phil tries to undo the spell and a nice touching moment too at the end here which seemed sad at the same time due to his romance with Sandy.
Bottom line is it's blended with both goofy comedy and horror into one and the timing was perfect for both of this as it won;t disappoint the fans of both genre's and can find this flick highly entertaining. A definete 80's film along with paying tribute's to events taking place in the late 50's too with the surroundigs on certain events.
It's what you'd picture in a Halloween horror flick with lots of witches, werewolves, vampires, ghouls and zombies.
Worth watching with a group of friends for the laugh and fun of it.
A perfect party flick without a doubt.

The acting is in nice shape as we get alot of fun performances. Lee Montgomery (Phil) as the sort of dweeby type role brings alot of chemistry to his performance. He shows off a good insecurity into his part and shows off a good anxious type of behavior whenever the terror starts to happen around him. He certainly gets into the picture with all of this.
I particularly was fond of the actress Jonelle Allen
(Lucinda Cavender) in which she looks mellow but there's something deadly about her. She has a nice soothing and soft voice whenever she speaks and does this superbly as well as showing a cold charm to her character as well. Her looks were perfect having and expressionless feel to her but then doing well when she looks vicious while she is about to attack.
Shari Belafonte
(Melissa Cavender) was also dynamic on her role as an outgoing teen partygoer and does well when she turns into a vampiress too. She has a great bubbly type of behavior and seems to be full of life for everything that she does not letting an ounce down into what she does. You'd really think that she was really a party animal with her actions towards others along with her sense of humor. Does incredibly well when she speaks out a chant in the graveyard as well and showing good expressions on her making out that she's passing out with her eyes curling up as well as joking around with her friends. She was was very well focused into doing all of this. She shows great energy with her wild eyes freaking out and swaying her arms after being bitten on the neck. A nice moment with her speaking smoothly towards her fellow actor. Perfect choreography on her performing a breakdance song getting into her singing with everyone else making this look highly entertaining as she stands out the most in this scene and knew on how to make herself watchable.
Jonna Lee (Sandy Matthews) acted totally life like as a spirit of a cheerleader brought back from the dead but yet she shows a real likeness to her role and lots of spunk, charm and someone who loves a challenge drawing all of this in perfectly. Her looks were a nice plus since she seemed to come across someone who was killed in a drag race during that time period with her wild attitude.
LeVar Burton (Vinnie Davis) shows alot of jazzy type spunk into what he did acting very outgoing in his role and a total attention grabber by really getting in there for what he did. He also knew on how to act like a goofy vampire when he turned . He was a natural ham in his part of the flick and a natural character actor.
Kevin McCarthy
(Judge Crandell) had a real effective supporting role as an obnoxious local acting real closed minded and abusive. He definetely comes across as believeably grumpy and having a bitter attitude for whatever he is doing. Shows off good blocking and aggressive yelling and being physical towards his fellow actor as this looked strongly done and in a good fashion standing between this being serious and humoress too. Good expressions on him by looking around his property as well as nice fearful reactions on him with an onscreen zombie lunging towards him. He also does well acting humoress and intimidating while he becomes a zombie with his gruff speaking.
DeDee Pfeiffer (Mary Masterson) shows off a good hyperactive attitude really wanting to join in the fun of things in which this looked impressive to weverything in her performance showing that she's having alot of fun into her role. You can tell that she was an aspiring actress with whatever she did into her part here and can really go places.
Dick Van Patten
Martin Grenville) definetely had a nice approach in his role as a lighthearted family man and works as a dentist showing off good timing with his comedic performance in whatever he did although his role wasn't huge it was for sure very noticeable. He seems very real into performing this part. Of course he is a big star with natural talent.
Mark Blankfield
(The Ghoul) really knew his craft as a goofy ghoul in the film and made his role really stand out well with his scratchy type of voice and just going haywire showing off a high tense of energy into his part and getting into the flow of things. He was the most memorable supporting character actor here. Another natural ham.

I absolutely love the music by Brad Fiedel and Philip Griffin especially when the dead is resurrected from the cemetary giving the music that perfect feel with the dark sounds which stands out very well. There's also nice peaceful piano playing during the beginning of the movie with a paperboy riding his bike around the neighborhood which blends in very well to the scene here. There's chilling old fashioned organ music too in alot of the moments with the ghouls attacking or doing other events like this which pulls off greatly for the sceneries involved.

There's also superb golden oldie soundtracks used in the film such as the song "Little Red Riding Hood" performed by Sam the Sham and The Pharaohsas this works in well with one of the character's leaving his home all dressed up to scare kids and have fun. I found this track to be a perfect touch for this moment.
There's even "Bad Moon Rising" by Creedence Clearwater Revival playing in a vehicle with someone cruising along as it's a total crusing type song and looked good watching this scene while the song is playing along
Another great groovy tune is "Clap for the Wolfman" by the Guess Who which was used during a scene at the party while one of the characters named Phil Grenville is drinking some punch and a midget zombie is drinking out of the punchbowl. The song seems to suit the scene and has a total party atmophere to the beat of it as well.
Of course there's the main song "The Midnight Hour" by Wilson Pickett which breezes through certain segments of the film mainly during the party as there's introductions by Wolfman Jack during this moment too adding a nice touch to it with the song being rhythm and blues along with a nice soulful singing to it too. Great choice as always.
Shari Belafonte gets into it big time with a number called "Get Dead" and totally rocks big time with her performance showing great breakdancing type of beat to all of this and funky sounds to everything. I thought that this was the best one out of all the songtracks played on here having a total 80's vibe to all of this.
There's a great touching song near the end of the film involving the character Phil once again after defeating the creatures of the night playing in his car radio which is "Baby I'm Yours" by Barbara Lewis in which there's great emotions in the singing to this and sounding perfectly peaceful and mellow.

Mitch Crandall: Astratcious Mundabar... Desmagon.
Vinnie Davis: Moe, Larry, Curlegon!

Melissa Cavender: Astrious Mundabar Desmagon... I envoke your powers. Come Heed my bidding on this night of nights. The eve of somehain, all Hallows Eve. Spirits of darkness, I command you to rise from your graves. EtLavamous Sagamaine, All manner of demons. I emplore your release from Eternal torment. Testegas Sogamaine. All man are of dead, renewed by sleep. Thirsting for blood, this night and forever, he who is touched by evil, shall become evil. Sodamous sogamaine. He who has died, shall rise again, bestamous sogamhaine. Life to the dead, Death to the living. Demons arise, arise, arise.

Melissa Cavender: So what do you think? Red... or white?
Lucinda Cavender: Red. Deffinatly Red.

The Ghoul: Pop... corrrrnnn... gooooood.

Judge Crandall: Nothing to say to your sweet old dad?

Phil Grenville: It's not working!
Sandy Matthews: It will it has too!
Phil Grenville: Maybe you're suppose to say some words or something. Huh? What words?
Sandy Matthews: I love you. Goodbye Phil.

Phil Grenville: Captain Jensen, three reports. Don't you think that adds up to something?
Captain Warren Jensen: Sure I do. Warewolves, zombies, vampires and little green men add up to... lets all have fun with the cops. I got your report. Happy Halloween.