Friday, April 27, 2018

Night Angel

Night Angel (aka Deliver Us from Evil)
Dominique Othenin-Girard

Lilith (Isa Jank) pulls herself out of hell and sets off to conquer the world by getting on the cover the best selling fashion magazine, Siren. First, she has to kill off its executives for some reason. Craig is an editor who is interested in an up-and-coming jewelry maker/model named Kirstie (Debra Feuer) but he is plagued by visions of something killing off his co-workers. Local bag-lady, Sadie (Helen Martin) seems to know more than she lets on about this whole situation.

Night Angel looks and feels like a late night Cinemax movie gone berserk.  Lift the supernatural elements out of the story and you have the tale of one woman who will stop at nothing to get on the cover of a fashion magazine. It is the kind of tawdry setting that lends itself perfectly to a little sleaze. Now, throw in a succubus, plenty of hearts being ripped out, and a woman with boob faces and you have something that is not only tawdry but also deeply silly and strange. It elevates Night Angel from just being another horny horror movie to something else entirely.

She purchased this little number from the Howling II collection.
Night Angel launches right into things with some monster effects, gore, and a random llama. When we are introduced to our hero, Craig, he’s having nightmares or visions about Lilith’s murder spree. The movie never really bothers explaining this connection. There are hints that Craig is something special to Lilith yet it is never expanded upon, but why would the viewer expect that? This is a movie where the grand plan of the villain is to get the cover of a fashion magazine in hopes of enslaving the world with sex appeal.

The only person in this that I would qualify as a decent actor is Helen Martin as the bag lady/voodoo expert/demon killer. It is an over-the-top role in an over-the-top movie and she steals every scene she is in. Isa Jank as Lilith is worst of the lot, there is nothing seductive or threatening about her demeanor. Sure she is attractive, but her performance is so wooden that it lessens the impact of what should be the most dynamic character in the film. Linden Ashby as Craig is fine, but his role isn’t the most demanding. Karen Black has an all too brief appearance as well.

Statler and Waldorf: After Hours
On the surface, Night Angel sounds like any other 1990s direct to video time waster, but once it gets going it is filled with odd touches. There is an extended nightmare hallucination that features a variety of mutants, faceboobs, and other weirdos. Craig arrives at his office to find everyone in the building is horny, aggressive, having sex in the hallways, and generally standing around being creepy. Craig even has a nightmare about Lilith barfing giant leeches all over him. Lilith’s demon form is a great practical monster costume complete with slime and wings.

Night Angel is ridiculous and engaging. There is a propulsive weirdness about it, and it ends being a fun little gem from the waning days of good direct to video horror. It is a fun oddity that is worth tracking down.

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