Salem’s Lot was Scariest TV Movie Ever Made

So my family was lucky enough to own a VCR around 1980. With corded remote control, top loading tray, and an audio dub feature, this RCA was a work of art.

And like many families in our neighborhood, we traded VHS tapes. Somehow, we got a tape that had TWO awesome made for TV movies on it. One was Captain America 2: Death Too Soon (which I blogged about on this site some months back) AND..the second half of the Salem’s Lot mini-series on CBS, directed by Tobe Hooper.

Have you ever seen the 1979 Salem’s Lot mini-series? It’s quite honestly THE SCARIEST FREAKING MOVIE (TV or NOT) EVER MADE. Now, I believed that when I was 9 years old watching it on VHS and I believe it now, when I’m 38 years old watching it on..well, VHS tape. I bought a two cassette set a few years ago.

The scene where Danny Glick floats into his brother’s room? FREAKY. That part where Mike Ryerson is rocking in the chair, waiting to feast on his own teacher? WATCH THAT RIGHT BEFORE YOU GO TO SLEEP.

The film freaked me out SO much, that on palm Sunday (which happened to be around the time I watched the tape for the first time), I grabbed a handful of extra palms, and put them on all the doors of my house. No, I’m not making that up.

That retro bumper, while awesomely groovy, doesn’t do the film justice. Well acted, well directed, well scored, well written – this mini-series delivers on every level. Starring James Mason, David Soul, Lance Kerwin and a SMOKING HOT Bonnie Bedelia, it’s top notch and one of my must see Halloween viewings.

Also, do some digging on YouTube – the whole film is there. But don’t say I didn’t warn you. Fine, you can say it, but doesn’t mean it’s true.

Look at me….teacher!

(NOTE – Do NOT watch Salem’s Lot: The Movie from 1979 – it’s a two hour cut down of the mini-series and severely lacking in the full length’s awesomeness. And don’t be confused with the 2004 TNT Salem’s Lot mini-series starring Rob Lowe. It’s good, but not 1979 Salem’s Lot mini-series good. And don’t bother with A Return To Salem’s Lot. Look, I’m just being thorough for you guys.)

Patrick J. Doody

Patrick J. Doody is a horror nerd and Mexican Pepsi enthusiast living in Los Angeles.He writes movies and makes TV shows. Check out his latest endeavor, Beyond Stranger Things streaming on Netflix.

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