This movie is not great, in fact, it’s probably one of the worst movies I have ever watched. The thing is, it’s based on one of my most-appreciated Stephen King books. It is such a fantastically creepy tale of karma meted out with old-world Gypsy magic and yet the film is just fat suits and cheap wigs. The special effects are so distractedly terrible that it’s hard to believe this was released as recently as 1996. Anyway, I still watch it most every year because I’m just a glutton for punishment.
Billy Halleck is an obnoxious, corrupt sleaze-ball lawyer who makes his scratch defending the dregs of the underworld and just happens to be obese. On the way home from celebrating a murder acquittal, he runs over a local Gypsy woman named Suzanne Lempke. While Billy does go to trial, his friends in the judicial system spare him any real punishment. Enter Tadzu, Suzanne’s father who refuses to let Billy get away with murder and curses him by simply whispering thinner. And you guessed it, Billy boy starts wasting away at an alarming rate (and for some reason starts looking reptilian). At first, he chalks it up to recent lifestyle changes but as he becomes increasingly gaunt, he knows the old man’s curse took. So, he does what any jerk trying to get away with murder does, he calls in the mob. The recently acquitted crime boss, Richie ‘The Hammer’ Ginelli goes with Billy to the gypsy camp to reason with Tadzu to no avail. Finally, Tadzu whips up a pie and tells Billy that if someone eats the pie, they will die and Billy will be spared. So he takes it home and feeds it to his wife who soon dies, unfortunately, his daughter also falls casualty to the tainted pie. Billy decides to eat the pie himself until his wife’s suspected lover shows up and we can assume from the closing shot that he ate the pie and Billy is spared.
What is the moral of this story, literally no idea. The guy killed numerous people, was still mostly an asshole by the end of the movie and overall it just leaves a bad taste in your mouth – like bloody, strawberry pie 😛 It’s poorly acted, the costumes are terrible, the script is clunky and a total disparagement of the book. Somehow, it’s just become a classic in its own terrible way. Should you watch it, yeah, it’s kind of a romp.
Check out what else I’m watching: 31 Nights of Halloween Watch List