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By Jerry Renshaw

Fans of the Tales from the Crypt series and The Twilight Zone should appreciate this early-Eighties anthology of horror tales. "Terror in Topanga" is the tale of a woman terrorized by a maniac when she just has to make a trip to the store for some cigarettes. "The Bishop of Battle" is notable for a very young Emilio Estevez as a teen whose obsession with video games gets the better of him. There's a definite nostalgia factor as he hustles other kids for money on the Paleozoic-era arcade games (listening to punk rock like Black Flag and Fear on an early-model Walkman the whole time). Perhaps the strongest segment involves B-movie stalwart Lance Henriksen as a priest who gives up the clergy and leaves his parish. While traveling across the desert, the hapless padre is pursued by a mysterious black Chevrolet pickup that systematically demolishes his car (shades of Spielberg's Duel). "Night of the Rat," rounding out the quartet, is just that; the story of a family who has a problem with a really big rat. While this little collection of tales tends to telegraph its punchlines well in advance, it still offers up a satisfying chill or two by way of its pacing and suspense, and with a bit more gore than the usual made-for-cable fare.


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Buy this VHS movie from! (Click here!)Buy this DVD from! (Click here!)Soundtrack unavailable at - try eBay (see links below)Rated RNot on an American Film Institute 100 list

Director: Joseph Sargent

Stars: Cristina Raines, Timothy James, William Sanderson, Emilio Estevez, Moon Zappa, Lance Henriksen, Robin Gammell, Richard Masur, Veronica Cartwright, Bridgette Andersen, Albert Hague

Released: September 9, 1983

Availability: DVD VHS

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