Evilspeak (1982)

Premiered August 22, 1982

Last week, on my week-long vacation, I did nuthin. Well, that’s not true, I did catch up on some Joe Bob Briggs movies and commentary on Shudder. This movie holds a special place in my heart. Back in Blockbuster days, I would always pick Evilspeak to watch, based on the awesome cover. But by the time I picked ten other movies, Evilspeak would get cut. And later, it sat on the DVR until I deleted it for space. Not really sure why.

I’m glad I waited because the Joe Bob commentary made me like the movie better. It’s harder to hate something when you learn how much work went into the project. Joe Bob interviewed Clint Howard, the lead and Better Howard Brother. Unlike most mass media interviews, the talk wasn’t really promotional, but focused on the struggle of how the movie got made.

Ok, Evilspeak is about a bullied Military Cadet (Howard) who finds a portal to Satan. He then gets revenge on the bullies. Pretty basic. Man, the stereotype is true: Satanists are big technophiles. Howard uses an Apple 2E to contact the underworld. And it’s a great program. If only the Catholics had a similar computer program, they could be diddling twice the number of boys today. The program was situation-aware, even when the computer was off, it still offered suggestions. Although, you know how phone-dialing in old movies stops the momentum dead, Howard spends ten minutes setting up the evil computer. Also, there’s a Satanic worship area in the basement of the Military Academy, is that a thing?

An average, but watchable, horror movie, Clint Howard is the reason to watch. More subtle than his later work like Ice Cream Man.