Witchboard (1987) – movie review

 witchboard movie - pic 1

Witchboard (1987)

Directed by Kevin Tenney

Starring
Todd Allen
Tawny Kitaen
Stephen Nichols
Kathleen Wilhoite
Burke Byrnes


Young couple. Jim and Linda are introduced to using a Ouija Board when an old friend, Brandon, attends a party at their place. The couple is haunted by a little boy named David, who is actually a much darker entity who eventually kills people around them and possesses Linda. He was a mass murderer who lived in the house previously and was gunned down by police. In the end there’s a half baked exorcism/battle by the boyfriend (who didn’t even believe in the spirit earlier in the movie) and this dark entity. Good triumphs and Linda and Jim get married.witchboard movie - poster

Tawny Kitean isn’t a great actress, but she has some classic, 1980s big hair and a killer wardrobe. I mean she wakes up from a nap and her hair is perfect. Plus she has the cutest dimples when she smiles. Okay, I admit, I had a little thing for her at one time because she looked somewhat like my wife did in the 80’s. (big hair, big…well let me not get into it)

The film demonstrates the progressive entrapment theory of spirit possession. Obsession, Oppression, Possession. Barely passable acting and a thinly held together plot leaves not much for the horror fan to cheer about. The effects are bare minimum, making me believe that the director never watched a horror film in his life. The annoying valley girl psychic thankfully gets killed by the spirit shortly after a hokey séance. There’s an even more annoying detective who tries hard to be Columbo but fails miserably.

Everyone has perfect haircuts, lives in gorgeous apartments and drives top-rated vehicles. No wonder the dead wanted in. Jim works in construction and doesn’t even sweat on the job. Even when possessed, the only difference with Linda is some black eye-liner and thicker mascara. She looks quite fashionable in her double-breasted suit jacket and tie, wielding an ax. She looks more like the cra-cra girlfriend in a rage after finding another woman’s name in your cell phone than someone possessed.

It’s curious that the entity’s name thru most of the film is David. What makes the film noteworthy is it was made in 1987, the same year Tawny entered the whirlwind relationship with Whitesnake vocalist, David Coverdale and starred in a series of 5 overblown, 80’s excessive, yet steamy videos for the band’s 1987 self titled album. Those videos were what really made her famous, not these sub-par horror flicks or her small role in Bachelor Party. So, if you want to see Tawny at her best, you’d be better off watching the Whitesnake videos.

witchboard movie - pic 7
Highlights include Tawny’s many fashion wardrobe changes and brief nudity in a shower scene, but otherwise not much to speak of here.

I give it 1.9 harrowing howls on the scale of hokey 80s horror with little to offer besides cheesecake.

Tawny Gallery

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