The Serpent and the Rainbow
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The Serpent and the Rainbow
Horror maven Wes Craven attempted a slight change of pace from his usual slasher movie milieu with this chiller loosely based on a true story. Bill Pullman stars as Dennis Alan, a Harvard researcher sent to Haiti by a pharmaceutical company to investigate the zombie legend and any possible connection it might have to a rumored drug that could be used as a new breed of powerful anaesthetic. Once on the Caribbean isle, Alan is aided by a good voodoo priest or "houngan" (Paul Winfield) and his daughter (Cathy Tyson), who runs a local clinic. Alan's search also pits him against an… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 59%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Offers a few good scares but gets bogged down in special effects."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"The Serpent and the Rainbow has a screenplay that often breaks its spell."
‑ Janet Maslin, New York Times
"Flavorful Grand Guignol"
‑ Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion
"A lame documentary-flavored horror story."
‑ Nick Schager, Lessons of Darkness
"A scary, hallucinogenic and underrated horror movie, and one of Wes Craven's best."
‑ Blake Davis, KFOR Channel 4 News
"Genuinely frightening."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"The Serpent and the Rainbow is uncanny in the way it takes the most lurid images and makes them plausible."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"Despite the strongly emphasized exoticness its Haitian scenery, The Serpent and the Rainbow may be Wes Craven's most pedestrian film."
‑ Rob Humanick, Projection Booth
"A trippy, guilty pleasure."
‑ John Wirt, Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA)
"Mildly effective "fact" based horror from Wes Craven."
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"Unfortunately, the political parallel between the ideological repression of Baby Doc's regime and the stultifying effects of the zombifying fluid is only sketchily developed, leaving us with a series of striking but isolated set pieces."
‑ Derek Adams, Time Out
"Take a powerful, revealing nonfiction book, sift through it for its most cliche'd elements and turn it into a terror film and you've got The Serpent and the Rainbow."
‑ Richard Harrington, Washington Post
"Craven combines the terrifying dream sequences of A Nightmare on Elm Street with the subtle and evocative atmospherics of Val Lewton."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"Director Wes Craven learned that the scariest things often have nothing to do with special effects wizardry."
‑ Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Spirituality and Practice
"Genuinely chilling, one of Wes Craven's best."
‑ Rob Vaux, Flipside Movie Emporium
More reviews for The Serpent and the Rainbow on Rotten Tomatoes

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