Young babysitter Amanda arrives at the Lloyd residence to spend the evening looking after their young son. Soon after the Lloyds leave, a series of frightening occurrences in the gloomy old house have Amanda’s nerves on edge. The real terror begins, however, when the child’s biological father appears after recently escaping from a nearby mental institution.
Kevin Steinhauer <[email protected]>
User Reviews: Susan George seemed to have spent a large part of 1971 being terrorised in rural houses by maniacs; in Straw Dogs she suffered violence at the hands of vicious country yokels and in Fright she is threatened by an escaped lunatic with murder on his mind.
Unfortunately, despite a great cast including George Cole, Honor Blackman and Dennis Waterman, and direction from Peter Collinson (who gave us the classic The Italian Job) this somewhat tedious thriller/horror rarely manages to be anything more than average.
Susan George (looking a lot like Sarah Michelle Gellar to me only much sexier) is great as Amanda, the babysitter who must protect baby Tara when his homicidal father drops by for a visit; she convincingly portrays the terror of the situation (whilst simultaneously looking great in a very short dress), but even her performance cannot save the film; the histrionics in the latter part of the film undermine all that goes before and the finale, in which Amanda exacts revenge on the killer, is quite ridiculous.
Director Collinson manages a few nice touches (I particularly liked the intercutting between Susan George and Honor Blackman to show how the maniac was unable to discern between the two women), but the tension of the housebound action is dissipated by some dreadfully dull scenes set in a nearby restaurant and the local police station.
With a little more action, a bit less talk and maybe one or two more deaths, this could have been a classic little chiller as it stands, it is just another so-so horror film which is unlikely to cause anyone sleepless nights.