Macabre…ish Horror Review: Wishmaster


Wishmaster, 1997/ 1 hr 30 min


A narrator (Angus Scrimm) explains that when God breathed life into the universe, the light created Angels. Earth birthed man and fire gave life to Djinn. Djinn are creatures that live in the void between worlds. If a person summons a djinn, they are gifted three wishes but the third unleashes legions of djinn on Earth.


In 1127 A.D. a djinn (Andrew Divoff) asks a Persian Emperor to make his second wish. He wishes to see wonders and the djinn unleashes cruelty, torture and monstrosity upon the kingdom. The people are mutilated, some transformed into monsters. Out of misguided desperation, he wants to use his last wish to try to undo it. But he’s stopped by Zoroaster, a sorcerer, explains the ramifications of the third wish. He instead, reveals a gemstone that traps the djinn inside it.


  • Present day America…


A drunk crane operator lowering a crate containing an antique statue, loses his grip and drops it on Raymond Beaumont (Robert Englund), assistant (Ted Raimi) below, destroying the statue. Later, a dock worker sifts the through the rubble, retrieving a gemstone. He takes it to a jeweler to sell, who reaches out to an appraiser, Alexandra "Alex" Amberson (Tammy Lauren). While examining it, she wakes the Djinn.


She gets a colleague, Josh Aickman (Tony Crane), to examine it after which the gem explodes, destroying the lab and releasing the djinn. A wounded, Josh, wishes for pain relief and receives death.


Alex after being informed of Josh’s death, tracks the gem to the statue and then a folklore professor. She explains the history of the gem and the nature of Djinns. Since djinns are inherently demonic and the wishes are always twisted and ghoulish plus wishes are given in return for human souls.


Later, Alex learns the Djinn has to energize the gem by giving the original summoner, which is her, three wishes in order to open the gateway and release the other Djinns onto Earth. The Djinn takes the form of a dead man and the name Nathaniel Demerest, then finds Alex by giving out wishes to those who prove useful in helping him.


Meanwhile, Alex has visions every time wishes are granted. She decides to see the folklore professor, Wendy Derleth (Jenny O’ Hara) again but soon realizes it’s the Djinn who has taken her form. He needs her to make her wishes and she has to use them wisely.


This horror fantasy was directed by Robert Kurtzman, produced by Wes Craven and written by Peter Atkins. This movie is great! Well paced, they don’t make you wait for something to happen, great physical effects, violent, graphic and gory with excellent monster effects. Very well done. Also in this is Tony Todd and Kane Hodder. This is one of 4 in the franchise.


Recently, Peter Atkins was on my podcast, Macabre…ish Cults, Classics & Horrors. Find it wherever there are podcasts or click here. Just choose from the list of podcast providers of your choice. 


If you prefer youtube, click here. Enjoy!