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OBSCURE CULT EXPLOITATION OF 'BLOODTIDE' AKA 'DEMON ISLAND'

Martin Kove and James Earl Jones in BLOODTIDE Year: 1982 Rating: ***1/2

Long-neglected and newly-restored BLOODTIDE is a hybrid of several horror/thriller types, from deadly sea creature to underwater treasure hunting to creepy village full of spooked locals (led by Jose Ferrer) with dark secrets...

One involves a cover-up, but only because American couple Martin Kove and Mary-Louise Weller entered the Greek island in the first place, seeking his sister (and plot-McGuffin) Deborah Shelton, an oddball/artistic brunette beauty contrasting the blondes also including Lydia Cornell, girlfriend of James Earl Jones...

Deborah Shelton in BLOODTIDE

As a diver named Fye who, with that famous baritone voice, can't play anything but bigger-than-life roles; and although technically a rogue loser, his goal is immense, seeking antique coins with a history of the penultimate horror trope and perhaps most important overall, virgin sacrifice... 

That which Shelton is obsessed with taking part in, leading to the overall aura of/and final sub-genre involving the Gothic Lila Kedrova as a sea-cliff monastery nun, warning Shelton of the creature that Jones's Frye had awakened with his fortune-seeking explosives, tying the random loose-ends together...

Proof that the original title of BLOODTIDE is BLOOD TIDE

Yet overall there are fewer body-count deaths than BLOOD TIDE subconsciously teases (not including poor Lydia making like the doomed JAWS' skinny-dipper), especially with the lovely ladies and their cocky, braggadocious men primed for seemingly logical b-movie massacres...

But what lacks in exploitative violence relies upon shifty suspense throughout the sun-soaked yet curse-laden island, mostly involving who could be sacrificed next (including a preteen native girl)... and it's surprising how maligned this terrorizing mash-up has become since BLOOD TIDE is anything but boring or uneventful. 

Lydia Cornell and Mary-Louise Weller in BLOODTIDE
Preteen would-be virgin sacrifice Rania Photiou and Jose Ferrer in BLOODTIDE
 Lila Kedrova takes the gothic mantle in BLOODTIDE
Prologue ancient-times virgin sacrifice Irini Tripkou in BLOODTIDE
Prologue ancient-times virgin sacrifice Irini Tripkou in BLOODTIDE
Martin Kove and Mary-Louise Weller in BLOODTIDE
Martin Kove and Mary-Louise Weller in BLOODTIDE
Mary-Louise Weller and Martin Kove in BLOODTIDE
James Earl Jones in BLOODTIDE
Mary-Louise Weller in BLOODTIDE
Mary-Louise Weller and Martin Kove in BLOODTIDE
Lydia Cornell in BLOODTIDE
James Earl Jones in BLOODTIDE
Mary-Louise Weller and Martin Kove in BLOODTIDE with Jose Ferrer
Mary-Louise Weller in BLOODTIDE
Deborah Shelton in BLOODTIDE
Deborah Shelton in BLOODTIDE
Lydia Cornell in BLOODTIDE
Deborah Shelton in BLOODTIDE

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