The Comeback (1978, aka The Day the Screaming Stopped)

The Comeback (1978, aka The Day the Screaming Stopped)

Synopsis:

An American singer (Jack Jones, Airplane II: The Sequel), who stopped performing after he got married, decides to restart his career after he gets a divorce. Meanwhile, the crooner’s ex-wife (Holly Palance, The Omen) is brutally murdered and this is just the beginning of a series of bizarre murders.

Reaction & Thoughts:

The Comeback (aka The Day the Screaming Stopped), written by Murray Smith, is an entertaining British chiller by cult filmmaker Pete Walker (House of Whipcord, Frightmare and House of the Long Shadows).

The film’s title could be interpreted in various ways. It alludes to both the singer’s “comeback” and the idea of the past coming back to affect the present. I’m sure that there are other interpretations too. It is a little on the slow side, but the leisurely-paced narrative held my interest.

The Comeback starts off with a terrific murder set-piece that lingers in your mind for a long time. The killer wears a wonderfully scary costume. It’s similar to the one used in the American slasher Terror Train (1980) and Canadian chiller Curtains (1983).

I also liked how director Walker combines the real with the supernatural — it’s essentially an old-school slasher with paranormal elements. Smith’s script contains delightfully quirky touches too; he adds a welcome touch of black humor to the mayhem.

Sheila Keith (House of Whipcord), a member of Walker’s stock company, is fun as the passive-aggressive Mrs. B. Popular character actor David Doyle (Bosley in TV’s Charlie’s Angels) gives an excellent performance as a music producer. With Richard Johnson (The Devil Within Her) and June Chadwick (This Is Spinal Tap).

Conclusions & Final Thoughts:

The Comeback is a freaky and entertaining horror movie. A must-see British spook-fest for Pete Walker fans. Color, 100 minutes, Rated R.

3 responses to “The Comeback (1978, aka The Day the Screaming Stopped)

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