The Night Stalker

release year: 1972
genre: TV horror
viewing setting: home DVD, 8/9/05

synopsis: Reporter Carl Kolchak gets involved in the investigation of a murderer who appears to be a vampire.

impressions: This was the movie/pilot for the TV series that did the same thing as The X-Files, only 20+ years earlier. It's a well-written, well-acted, suspenseful horror/drama. The main character narrates between scenes, and there are plenty of supporting characters. There are also officials who suffer from the "Jaws" effect: they're so worried about tarnishing their image and losing money that they refuse to acknowledge the danger, or reveal it to the public. The ending was a real kick in the balls for Kolchak.

something this movie has that no other movie has: Fierce dog vs. vampire.

acting: This is one of Darren McGavin's finest roles; his character is a good reporter who puts things together before the police.

final word: classic horror TV

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