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Demon Knight Review

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Brayker is a man on the run. He holds the last of seven mystical Keys, containers for the blood of Christ that were scattered across the universe to prevent the forces of Evil taking over. But (doh!) six have already fallen to The Collector, and now he's tracked Brayker down. Let the fight for the future of mankind begin!

★★★★★

Portions of salt, measured not in pinches but in sackfuls, are essential for those planning an hour-and-a-half in the company of the Demon Knight. The big screen realisation of the 1950s cult horror comic Tales From The Crypt is more Freddie Krueger than Henry the serial killer.

Although into its sixth series since being relaunched on US cable TV in 1988, this is the first attempt to make a single Crypt "storyline" into a movie. The stretch marks are painfully obvious. The Demon Knight, a drifter called Brayker (Sadler), checks into a weird motel with his nemesis The Collector (Zane) in hot pursuit. Zane arrives with two cops and politely asks Sadler, eyed suspiciously by five other misfits, for the return of an ancient key that Zane claims Sadler has stolen from him.

All this preamble, though, takes a mighty 25 minutes and the sense of relief that accompanies Zane finally unleashing some mutant demons is passed only by the certainty that each of Sadler's unwitting allies will be dispatched one-by-one.

The shaven-headed Zane is excellent as a cool, calm and only slightly cruel netherworlder, Sadler does a neat line in draft exclusion using blood held in the key, and the copious amounts of guts spillage will satiate the gorehounds. But the funny lines are too few and far between and neither horror stalwart Dick Miller's fine turn as a boozer-loser, or Pinkett's gutsy Jeryline can ever overcome the feeling that this is a story too small for the big screen horror splash it is caught masquerading as.

Despite its aspirations to big-screen scares, this delivers more kitsch than a truckload of glow-in-the-dark skeletons

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