HEX (1972) Reviews and overview

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Hex   aka CharmsThe Shrieking and Grass Land – is a 1972 American horror film directed by Leo Garen from a screenplay co-written with Steve Katz, based on a story by Doran William Cannon and Vernon Zimmerman (Fade to Black). It was filmed on the Cheyenne River Indian Reservation.

Main cast:

Keith Carradine (Dexter; Cowboys and Aliens), Dan Haggerty (Terror Night; ElvesAxe Giant: The Wrath of Paul Bunyan), Gary Busey (Silver Bullet; Piranha 3DDMansion of Blood), Scott Glenn (Gargoyles; The Keep; Silence of the Lambs), Hillarie Thompson and Cristina Raines (The Sentinel, billed as Tina Herazo).

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Set in 1919, immediately after the First World War, a loosely knit band of motorcyclists back from fighting in Europe is making their way across the United States to seek their fortunes in California. They come upon the fictional town of Bingo, Nebraska and are challenged to a race by a local hot rodder.

The outcome of the race is disputed, and the bikers flee into the surrounding countryside. They hide on a farm owned by two sisters, Oriole and Acacia, whose recently deceased father was a Native American shaman.

The bikers are soon discovered by the sisters, who reluctantly allow them to stay overnight. One of the bikers attempts to carnally assault the younger sister, after which the older sister dons her father’s shaman regalia and casts a hex on the gang. The bikers soon start departing this world in unnatural ways…

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“Mostly humdrum, the muddled and incomprehensible plot is additionally hampered by clumsy attempts at lightheartedness. But the cast of solid ’70s performers bring a strange watchability to this wayward tale.” The Terror Trap

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“None of the characters seem to react realistically to the strange events that go on around them; when one of the characters finally says that there’s “something strange going on”, it’s so late in the movie that it became the biggest laugh line in it for me (and a lot funnier than the intentional comedy). In the end, it feels like a somewhat arty mess. Recommended only to the extremely curious.” Fantastic Movie Musings and Ramblings

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“Largely a mess, but an engaging one. A horror film/Western/World War I biker movie, it exudes an improbable degree of charm precisely because of a freewheeling script that refuses to be tied to any one genre. Although the girls’ motivations remain consistently traditional (well, almost), on the whole the film exudes the feeling of being, almost subliminally, a nostalgic valediction to the counterculture. ” Time Out

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