This is where the movie picks up. In the years she was away Susan’s father has passed away and her mother has remarried a man named Harold. There is also the groundskeeper John and a few other household staff members. From the moment she arrives home it is clear that someone is shadowing Susan, scaring her at every opportunity. She also starts to see Harold, who left on a business trip, apparently dead. Though when she gets help the body is always gone. Is she losing her mind or is there something else going on? I won’t spoil this one by answering that question or by giving anymore details here.
I enjoyed the heck out of A Taste of Evil. The story had a cool gothic feel to it. The house is imposing, and you have the family/staff who may or may not want what is best for our main character. The woman in danger questioning her own sanity is also a trope of this sort of flick but is handled decently here. The creeping around the woods and the old house in the dark all adds to an atmosphere that helps to make this a bit spooky and very entertaining. There is a twist that I won’t spoil, but it also fits with the sort of story they are trying to tell here. It has a very Rebecca and/or The Uninvited feel that put a smile on my face. I love flicks like this. The shorter runtime of seventy three minutes also helps it to move along quickly and not linger on bits that could have killed the pacing. Here being a made for television flick helps it out quite a bit.
will acknowledge that the actress, Barbara Parkins, struggles a bit as Susan. There
are times when she should be carrying the movie but is lost a bit in her scenes
with the stronger supporting co-stars. Barbara Stanwyck (her mother), William
Windom (Harold), and Roddy McDowall (the family doctor) all dominate their
scenes with her. It might have been a big ask to get her to hold her own with
such a great group of actors but that is what was needed, and it hurts the
movie that she can’t. Though that didn’t spoil things for me, but it could have
been better with a stronger actress in the lead role.
Have no fear Dr. McDowall is here!
A Taste of Evil is a fun television movie that reminds me of being a kid and staying up to watch something I’d never heard of. I do remember this one making the rounds on the late show that used to start after the news on my local station. Luckily you don’t have to stay up to watch it as you can find the movie online to check out for free. Did I mention it has Roddy McDowall in it? He is awesome yet again. I recommend checking this one out.
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