This 1985 exploitation film is quite bad but still reasonably fun for fans of trashy, sleazy, B-movie exploitation films and 80s nostalgia.
F Street was heavily trafficked in the 1970s and early 80s. As the decade progressed, slashers became the lurid genre du jour, and exploitation films became less common. Evils of the Night from 1985 is an outlier.
The movie is a strange mix of cabin-in-the-woods slasher, alien invasion story, and straight-up sex romp.
A trio of aliens is capturing teenagers and draining their blood. If only it were as straightforward as it sounds.
Evils of the Night has a strange subplot in which a pair of creepy mechanics are in league with the alien invaders. It sounds simple enough. Every alien invasion film requires treacherous humans; the problem here is how strangely it plays out.
The pair who are in cahoots with the aliens are just randomly introduced before disappearing for a long stretch of time. When they are brought back in the final act, they are portrayed as the true villains. This includes one of them giving off serious David Hess in The Last House on the Left vibes.
While the plot is paper thin, Evils of the Night does keep audiences engaged.
For starters, the characters are fleshed out. (No pun intended.)
It is generic hornball exploitation stuff, but there are defining characteristics. The movie also follows an important drive-in movie rule. As the plot heads towards its finale, there are a number of shocking deaths. This is very much a movie where anyone can die at any time.
There is an almost improvisational feel to the acting.
This is unsurprising as the cast is filled with first-timers and adult film stars. What will catch some off guard is the fact that Hollywood legend John Carradine, Tina Louise, who played Ginger on Gilligan’s Island, and Julie Newmar, who was the original Catwoman in the campy 1960s Batman television series, are also in Evils of the Night.
There is a clear divide here. The big-name actors spend little, if any, screen time with the rest of the cast.
The writing does a passable job of connecting its sex romp and UFO plot lines, but the fact that there are essentially two separate casts really impacts Evils of the Night. There is no chemistry, and everything comes off as forced and silly.
As with any good exploitation movie, Evils of the Night is unafraid to include nudity for no reason.
Within five minutes, there is a graphic sex scene (for the 80s) that gives audiences a clue of what they are in for.
Not content to leave it at T&A, the dialogue also includes some doozies, like, “Nothing, my boob! What’s the matter with this pair, buster?” It is almost impressive how blatantly misogynist this film is.
The DNA of Evils of the Night is found in the many modern films that are intentionally “bad” in order to garner laughs; the difference being this is not meant to be bad. Sure, it is a low-budget B movie, but there is no irony in the filmmaking here.
While it never reaches “so bad it’s good” territory, it has genuinely entertaining moments. That’s something most movies that are ironically awful cannot say.