31 in 31: Play Misty For Me


Story: Lucille Bluth was a controlling psycho even in the 70s. Case in point? Here she calls herself Evelyn Draper and stalks a DJ until he sleeps with her. She gets crazier and crazier until he cuts her off. Think that’s gonna stop her? Bingo!

Scares: Evelyn is one creepy chick, and as her psychosis grows so do the chills. Though I’m guessing that if you’re a guy? This is seriously scary shit.

Splat factor: More thriller than flat-out horror, this movie doesn’t have much blood.

Closing scene “shocker”: Nup.  It’s 1971, and endings are endings.

Remake, Sequel or OG (Original Ghoul): This is Clint Eastwood’s first time directing a movie, and it’s a one and only.

Trick or Treat?: Something that everyone says is good that actually is good? Hell-o! I’d heard about this film from many horror fans, and it’s been touted as a successor to Psycho. But I hadn’t seen it yet. And more than a successor to the great Norman Bates, Evelyn (and this film) remind me more of Alex Forrest in Fatal Attraction. Play Misty For Me is a horror film in that niche; real world spooky. It’s effective as hell, and definitely should be on your watch list if you haven’t seen it yet.  It’s choppy in a few places, and the editing during the climax is so quick that it’s one big spin, but all in all the film holds up, and is a definite classic in the genre.

Eastwood doesn’t shy away from a gorgeous shot of Carmel, CA; it’s a mini travelogue. Thank you, Clint. Donna “Knots Landing” Mills as Clint’s former-maybe-on-again girlfriend is crazy young – I almost didn’t recognize her – and rocks a Klute hairdo like nobody else. (Sorry, Jane Fonda.)  Which reminds me, some of the 70s styles the characters are sportin’ are terrifying in and of themselves.

Play Misty For Me shows that Eastwood knows how to do suspense just as well as straight drama. Here’s hoping he’ll do another one. Hey, a gal can hope. Y’know, as long as you don’t get all psycho about it….

Score: wpid-pumpkin9.jpg wpid-pumpkin9.jpg wpid-pumpkin9.jpg wpid-pumpkin9.jpg  out of 5 pumpkins.

About Denise

Professional nerd. Lover of licorice.
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