Exhumed Films Double Feature
Angel Heart / Lord Shango
Exhumed Films and International
House Philadelphia are proud to present two underappreciated, intellectual
horror films dealing with voodoo, occultism, and sexuality:
ANGEL HEART—30th Anniversary Screening
1987 / 35mm / Dir. Alan Parker / 113 min.
Alan Parker’s film noir-inspired supernatural thriller ANGEL HEART stoked controversy before its release due to reports of graphic sex scenes that originally earned the film an X-rating. Unfortunately, the puritanical clamor over ANGEL HEART’s eroticism overshadowed just how effective and disturbing a movie it is. Mickey Rourke plays Harry Angel, a troubled 1950’s private detective who is hired by a mysterious client (Robert DeNiro in a scene-stealing cameo) to track down the missing singer Johnny Favorite. The search leads Harry to New Orleans, where he becomes involved with an enigmatic young woman (“The Cosby Show” star Lisa Bonet) and uncovers a nightmarish plot involving voodoo cults and Faustian bargains. Thirty years after its initial release, ANGEL HEART remains a creepy, clever film that is worth revisiting.
1975 / 35mm / Dir. Ray Marsh / 92 min.
From the exploitative movie
poster that accompanied its release, you would be forgiven for expecting LORD
SHANGO to be a campy Blaxploitation horror movie like SUGAR HILL or BLACULA. In
reality, LORD SHANGO is an intelligent exploration of difficult topics such as
sexual abuse, religious hypocrisy, and cultural identity. Marlene Clark
(SWITCHBLADE SISTERS, THE BEAST MUST DIE) stars as Jenny, a woman whose faith
and sanity are both challenged by a series of tragedies. It begins when Jenny’s
teenage daughter’s baptism is interrupted by the girl’s boyfriend, a voodoo
practitioner who objects to the ceremony. An unexpected death resulting from the
incident puts Jenny at odds with her religion, her family, and her community,
and seems to bring about demonic possession and voodoo vengeance. Perhaps more
of a supernatural art film than a traditional horror movie, LORD SHANGO
features strong acting and a serious storyline that sets it apart from many
other genre films of the era.