The Night Stalker (1972)

John Llewellyn Moxey directs Darren McGavin, Simon Oakland and Carol Lynley in this horror movie where a maverick journalist covers a series of vampire attacks in Las Vegas that the authorities do not want to acknowledge.

One of the most watched TV movies of its era, a formative horror experience for the generation before mine and an acknowledged influence on The X-Files, The Night Stalker felt like a must see. While it does have an air of paranoia and conspiracy that definitely hooked Chris Carter at an early age it didn’t hold up well to modern eyes. A creaky simple mystery, variably acted, with some weak tea bloodsucking horror. The sunny Technicolor Nevada location shoot makes a seedy and garish impression. Yet the only element that has truly stood the test of time is Darren McGavin’s dogged reporter Kolchak. He is like a cheaper Walter Matthau and the character is a pleasing cocktail of Hunter S Thompson and Darrin from Bewitched. Imagine that!… You can’t, can you? So you’ll have to watch this then.

5

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

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