Macabre…ish Horror Review: Cellar Dweller

Cellar Dweller, 1988/ 1 hr 18 min


A woman, Whitney Taylor (Debra Mullowney)  and fan of Colin Childress (Jeffrey Combs) wants to create comic books in his style and joins an artist colony called Throgmorton Institute for the Arts, that is Childress’ former childhood home and the place he died. The story goes, he hacked a woman up with an axe and then lights himself on fire.

Whitney insists on working in his former office in the basement. She cleans it up and gets to work. Meanwhile, her former rival, Amanda (Pamela Bellwood) is also attending and has been commissioned to spy on Whitney by Mrs. Briggs (Yvonne de Carlo) under the guise of a visual arts project.

It is not long before Whitney’s work conjures a beast into reality, the same one that Colin drew and after she realizes what Amanda has done, she draws the beast attacking and consuming her nemesis.

The other residents become curious when Amanda seemingly vanishes, Norman (Vince Edwards) is particularly interested and starts ‘investigating’ looking for evidence and motive. And it does not end well for him. And Whitney’s comic mysteriously continues on it’s own with a new character and a new death. It appears a fabled curse is real after all.

And when the story continues right in front of Whitney and Phillip (Brian Robbins), they try to save Lisa (Miranda Wilson) before the story gets to the end. Somehow they have to stop the beast or the curse before it is too late. And she does! But a major mistake reverses it all.

This 80s horror is a good, short monster flick! The characters are annoying and I found myself excited for their deaths. But when the mayhem begins, the pace is really fast. It is also a little gory and graphic but this is no gore fest, there are no buckets of blood or shockingly graphic death scenes. There is some nudity but actually not much considering this is an 80s horror. Also it took me half the movie to recognize Lily Munster, it was good to see her!