The best film adaptation to date of the writings of H.P. Lovecraft isn’t even based on anything H.P. Lovecraft wrote. John Carpenter‘s In the Mouth of Madness is best described as “Lovecraftian” and then some, with Sam Neill (who’s excellent) as a freelance insurance fraud investigator who’s assigned to find a reclusive horror writer named Sutter Cane (Jurgen Prochnow), whose latest book seems to be turning its readers into homicidal maniacs. He tracks Cane down to a small town called Hobbs End, a place that supposedly only exists in Cane’s books, and then… well, you’re just going to have to pay a visit yourself, but be warned that the hotel is run by a seemingly nice old lady who keeps her husband naked and chained underneath the check-in desk. Carpenter is at the top of his game here, delivering some of his best work as a director, and his Memoirs of an Invisible Man pal Neill keeps even the most outrageous B-movie elements classy with his terrific performance. A genuinely creepy, unsettling and severely underrated horror film.
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