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LOW BUDGET BRITISH ANTHOLOGY HORROR FLICK 'SCREAMTIME'

Dione Inman in SCREAMTIME Year: 1983 Rating: ***1/2

"They're British," says New York lowlife Vincent Russo after stealing three video rentals, "I can tell by the way they talk." But it's more than that: the mellow pace and steady acting punctuates British cinema while SCREAMTIME involves a wraparound story where two thieves insert and eject short films that they and we are viewing...

And the best is the first, THAT'S THE WAY TO DO IT, about creepy puppet Punch handled by an old man with a nagging wife — plus a goading stepson whose girlfriend Dione Inman becomes the "final girl" as the deaths leading to her climactic chase are predictably well-deserved...

Followed by DREAMHOUSE where a married woman is tortured by images of the title location's past: This one's more cerebral and a bit plodding yet ultimately saved by a fantastic twist, which is all DO YOU BELIEVE IN FAIRIES amounts to: a dirt-bike racer housesits for two ecentric old ladies... and while a Punch puppet is the first tale's tiny killer, here it's a slew of Garden Gnome statues led by wide-eyed Kim Thomson's telekinetic Fairy Queen ghost. And it's lucky those East Coast punks actually robbed a London video store since Britain's super-cheap horror flicks are usually worthwhile: Like a broken antique clock can't tell time but is still magnificent to look at, there's plenty here to savor.

Dione Inman in SCREAMTIME story one THAT'S THE WAY TO DO IT
Vincent Russo, Michael Gordon and Marie Scinto in SCREAMTIME the Wraparound Story
Former British New Wave starlet ANN LYNN as the nagging wife in Screamtime's first tale
Punk ass stepson Jonathan Morris in SCREAMTIME the first story
Great ass Dione Inman and Jonathon Morris in SCREAMTIME first story
Robin Baily prepares a Punch in SCREAMTIME: That's The Way to Do It
Dione Inman in SCREAMTIME: THAT'S THE WAY TO DO IT
Dione Inman in SCREAMTIME: THAT'S THE WAY TO DO IT
SECOND "SCREAMTIME" tale "DREAMHOUSE" with haunted Yvonne Nicholson
SCREAMTIME second story DREAMHOUSE
THIRD "SCREAMTIME" story 'Do You Believe In Fairies?' with Kim Thomson
Kim Thomson in the third SCREAMTIME story Do You Believe in Fairies?
Kim Thomson in the third SCREAMTIME story Do You Believe in Fairies?
David Van Day with Kim Thomson in SCREAMTIME Third/FInal Story
Vincent Russo in the wraparound of SCREAMTIME
Vincent Russo with Michael Gordon in the wraparound of SCREAMTIME
Vincent Russo in the wraparound of SCREAMTIME eyes the fictional Screamhouse/Dreamhouse
Vincent Russo in the wraparound of SCREAMTIME with THE BLOB visible
IMDb says this is Kevin Smith from Xena in SCREAMTIME and it ain't obviously those dummies
Third video watcher Marie Scinto in the wraparound of SCREAMTIME
Screaming Marie Scinto in the wraparound of SCREAMTIME living up to its name
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