When I was roaming around at Monster Mania not too long ago, I stumbled upon the Vinegar Syndrome booth. I spoke with the dude and told him to sell me something. Out of all the candidates, the one I landed on was “Cthulhu Mansion” by director Juan Piquer Simon (or J.P. Simon, as he’s known in the US).
An aging magician with a terrible occult secret is taken hostage by a group of coke dealers. They decide to hide out at the magician’s mansion with his daughter, but the magician’s secrets are deadly and bursting to get out.
For better and for worse, this film was exactly as advertised. Director J.P. Simon (Pieces, Slugs) brings his almost cartoonish energy to a tale inspired by H.P. Lovecraft. While it doesn’t have a whole lot to do, and it builds to a conclusion that just goes batshit, it’s a lot of fun and has some perfectly early 90’s camp to go with the gore and mayhem.
We start in a carnival, and end in a gothic dream. We encounter spectres, demons, zombies, and much more along the way.
Online, the film gets critiqued for not having much to offer, but if you approach it with an open mind it’s a great way to spend your time. I would recommend it to people who love the late 80s/early 90s camp, over the top situations, and intriguing ambiguity. But it’s definitely not for the people who take their horror a bit too seriously.
‘Til Next Time,