Ogre, The / La casa dell'orco (1988)

2.0 out of 5

Cheryl suffered from a recurring nightmare as a child, in which a hideous ogre pursued her relentlessly through an enormous castle. Now an adult and a successful horror writer, she travels to Italy on vacation with her husband and young son, lodging in a familiar-looking castle. While working on her latest story, she finds that her childhood nightmare has returned and that the castle itself is identical to the one from her dreams. Were her nightmares actually premonitions or is she suffering from an overactive imagination?

The Ogre is one of four made-for-TV films directed by Lamberto Bava for the series Brivido giallo, and is commonly mistaken as part of Bava’s Demons series due to its misleading U.S. DVD title, Demons 3: The Ogre.

Highlights include atmospheric dream sequences, a surreal electronic score by Simon Boswell, and a menacing castle with armor-lined corridors and creepy subterranean basement.

The film disappoints with an anticlimactic finale and mediocre creature makeup effects. In one ludicrous scene, Cheryl dives into a murky green pool of water in the basement to retrieve a piece of paper and discovers submerged corpses, in a carbon copy of the underwater scene from Dario Argento’s Inferno.

Maurizio Merli header graphic courtesy of Paddy O'Neill of Foxyfide Graphics