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"WISHMASTER"
(1997) (Tammy Lauren, Andrew Divoff) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Mild Extreme Heavy *Extreme Heavy
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild Mild Heavy None Extreme
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
None Mild Minor Mild Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Horror: A woman unknowingly unleashes, and then must stop, an ancient, powerful, and evil being that will take over the world upon completion of granting her three wishes.
PLOT:
Alex (TAMMY LAUREN) is a jeweler for an auction house who is given an emerald opal to appraise. She believes it to be extremely valuable, but while looking it over unknowingly releases an evil and powerful being, the Djinn, that was imprisoned inside. After her friend Josh is killed when the being erupts from the stone, it takes the human form of Nathaniel (ANDREW DIVOFF), and sets off to collect people's souls by granting them their wishes. After he has enough souls to reactivate the stone, Nathaniel then pursues Alex, for since she is the person who unleashed him, upon completion of granting her three wishes he'll become omnipotent and then take over the world. Once Alex learns this, it's everything she can do to stop his plans while not asking for her third and final wish.
WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of horror films they probably will.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For horror violence and gore, and for language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • TAMMY LAUREN plays a jeweler who accidentally releases the evil being and then must do what she can to outwit him. She smokes in a few scenes, but her character isn't developed enough to have any other bad or good traits.
  • ANDREW DIVOFF plays the evil being whose goal is to rule the world, and in his attempt to do so, he kills and tortures many people.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    OUR TAKE: 2.5 out of 10
    Live Entertainment and those responsible for this film are trying to make a fast buck with this flick before it quickly disappears in the heat of superior competition this fall. They didn't provide any previews for the press, thus ensuring that they'll make their early box office haul before critical and audience word of mouth gets out about this feature. Surprisingly, it's not as horrible as one would expect, and it easily could have survived such previews since the core audience of teenage males won't pay much attention to the reviews anyway. That said, the picture isn't that good either, and certainly isn't very scary for a film dealing with demonic forces. Most of the "scares" come from all of the blood, gore, and violence that permeate the film, and while all of that puts a lot of technical people to work, this effort certainly wasn't trying for the writers or director. While Wes Craven's ("Scream," the "Nightmare on Elm Street" movies) name is associated with this movie (as executive producer), none of his originality can be found anywhere in it. If you've seen any other "B" grade horror films where gore out rates imagination, then you've seen this one. The plot offers few surprises and the characters land mostly in the throw away league and could easily have been played by anyone, both of which are typical in the low end of the horror genre. Additionally, the film has little or no much-needed humor, and even less imagination. Although the main character finally figures out how to dispatch the evil being, the old "Aladdin" three wishes plot constricts what could have been a fun and inventive run at making wishes (and having them horrifically or humorously go wrong). That is done for a bit in this film, but mainly with the supporting characters, and just once with Alex. Of course to do it right, the film makers would have needed to have done some character research and plot development. The budget didn't have room for anything like that (whatever you do, don't ask or pay the writers for better material), so they just spilled some more blood, ripped open some more chests, and figured that would sell some movie tickets. It will, but not for very long as this film has "straight to video" written all over it. I may be wrong about this, but I certainly hope audiences won't reward such unimaginative, lackluster film making with strong box office figures. People used to make wonderfully scary, terrifying and occasionally disturbing horror films, but that art seems to have all but disappeared. It certainly can't be found in this film, and thus we give "Wishmaster" a 2.5 out of 10.
    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    This film gets most of its "scare" power from shock effects and all of that blood and gore that should probably please the teenage males at which this film is based. Preteens, however, might be terrified by this film (for those very reasons) and younger kids will have nightmares after seeing the many graphic events unfold on the screen. Beyond all of the blood, gore, and violence (of which there's plenty), profanity also scores an "extreme" rating with 15 "f" words and many others. Parents and others who are concerned with occult or supernatural material will also probably want to stay clear of this film, for it deals with topics such as souls being traded for wishes and there's a demonic being that wants to rule the world. Since some kids (probably male teens) will want to see this film, we suggest that you check out the content before allowing them to do so.

    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • A dock worker pours alcohol from a flask into his Styrofoam cup. He appears to be drunk and accidentally causes a crate to fall onto a man, killing him.
  • Alex pours herself a glass of wine.
  • A professor pours herself a drink.
  • People drink at an art reception.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • In ancient Persia, blood is poured into some sort of mystical concoction. Later, after Djinn grants a wish, many people are "injured" and have bloody wounds, a creature erupts from a man's abdomen, and another man spits up blood as his chest and face rip open and eventually his skeleton rips out of his body (and of course is also bloody).
  • Josh is very bloody after the opal explodes inside his lab.
  • A very slimy, gross-looking creature makes its way toward Josh.
  • A store owner's face and skin begin to bubble up and large bloody welts show up after Djinn grants a wish.
  • We see some partially dissected cadavers in an autopsy room and a worker finds Djinn working on removing one of their faces. He then pulls up the skin (leaving a bloody mess behind) and puts it on his own face.
  • Blood squirts out from two police officers who are repeatedly shot and the suspect then pulls a man's jaw from his face before being shot and killed himself (both of which are extremely bloody).
  • We see a dead professor on her bed and she's very bloody.
  • Djinn literally blows his brains out with a handgun shot to the chin.
  • We see some gory and gross-looking souls in Djinn's world.
  • The entire end of the movie has people who are injured/mutilated/killed and consequently are bloody and/or gross looking. This includes a man being decapitated by piano wire and we see his head hit the floor, and lots of blood comes from people's mouths and/or wounds.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Obviously Djinn and his evil plan to take over the world (that involves killing many people) have extreme cases of both.
  • Some viewers may see this film that deals with the occult and/or demonic forces as having both -- especially since people are trading their souls for wishes.
  • A street bum wishes a horrific death for a store owner and it's granted.
  • Djinn (in the guise of a man) looks down at a woman's butt (and the camera does the same).
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • This category received an "extreme" rating due to the fact that it would scare very young kids. Older preteens and teens will probably find it only mildly to moderately scary. For details of scary elements, see "Violence" and "Blood/Gore.
  • Alex has a quick flashback to her house burning down years ago.
  • Alex has quick visions/flashes of horrific images throughout the movie.
  • A scene shows Djinn collecting all of his souls (people having attacks, screaming, etc...)
  • Alex finds herself in Djinn's Hell-like world where a strange dog-like monster chases after her and we also see suffering, damned souls who scream and/or are whipped.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handguns: Used to kill several people, by Djinn to blow his brains out (temporarily) and fired at statues that have come to life. See "Violence" for details.
  • Several statues comes to life and injure or kill people with swords, arrows or other medieval-looking weapons.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Dumb ass, "Up yours," "Piss," "Geez" and "Bastard."
  • Alex drives like a mad person down the road, swerving between cars and on both sides as she tries to find her sister.
  • Since this film deals with demonic/supernatural elements (that grant wishes), some kids may be inclined to pursue this further, but no character in the film knowingly and willingly summons such activity.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • Alex's boss surprises her by suddenly being next to her when she looks up from her microscope.
  • Alex has a nightmare where she suddenly finds a gross-looking Josh sitting next to her.
  • A person is surprised when a worker suddenly juts out a jar full of eyeballs at him.
  • A person in a mask suddenly surprises Alex.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • There is a heavy amount of suspenseful and/or scary music throughout the production.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 15 "f" words, 10 "s" words, 3 slang terms using male genitals (the "p" word), 11 hells, 5 damns, 4 asses (3 using "hole"), 1 S.O.B., and 5 uses of "Oh God," 4 uses of "Oh my God," 2 uses of "My God," and 1 use each of "G-damn," "Jesus Christ" and "God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • None.
  • SMOKING
  • Alex smokes on several occasions and we also see Djinn and several other people smoking as well.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • A comment is made about Alex saving her sister from a fire, but failing to do the same for her parents who perished in it several years ago.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Supernatural or demonic forces.
  • Wishes and being careful what you wish for.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Many people are graphically killed or wounded in ancient Persia when Djinn grants a wish that wrecks such havoc on these people.
  • Josh is killed in an explosion in his lab.
  • A store owner is killed by a bum's wish (he quickly and graphically gets cancer).
  • A suspect in a police station grabs a gun and shoots two officers dead. He then attacks another and rips his jaw from his head before he himself is repeatedly shot until dead.
  • Djinn causes an airliner to blow up, killing untold amounts of people on board.
  • Djinn blows his brains out with a handgun to the chin, but the damage is only temporary.
  • A woman turns to glass and the shatters, sending shards everywhere that injure and kill people.
  • The entire end of the movie has many people being mutilated, wounded, or killed. We see several people on fire, a bloody creature coming from a man's mouth, and several warrior statues come to life and kill or injure people. Security guards shoot at these statutes, but to no avail and are killed. A painted character then comes to life and kills a man with a large, sharpened blade.



  • Reviewed September 19, 1997

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