Don’t Panic – Mexico, 1988 – reviews

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‘The real nightmare is just beginning!’

Don’t Panic – aka Dimensiones ocultas – is a 1988 Mexican supernatural slasher horror film written and directed by Rubén Galindo Jr. (El psicópata asesinoResucitaré para matarlos; Grave Robbers; Cemetery of Terror).

Main cast:

Jon Michael Bischof, Gabriela Hassel, Helena Rojo, Jorge Luke, Juan Ignacio Aranda, Eduardo Noriega, Roberto Palazuelos, Raúl Araiza, Edna Bolkan, Evangelina Elizondo, Mindie McCullum, Cecilia Tijerina, Mario Iván Martínez, Lucho Gatica, Humberto Elizondo. 

Plot:

On his seventeenth birthday, Michael is given an Ouija board by Tony, his best friend. At an Ouija session, Tony unwittingly unlocks the evil forces of the board.

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Soon, there is a wave of violent killings and the chief suspect appears to be Michael. He has been witness to all the killings via premonitions and out of body experiences. Is Michael the killer? Can he prove his innocence or is someone else being possessed by the evil spirit?

Reviews:

“Galindo could have taken the easy way out with Don’t Panic, patching together a serious, bloody, and ultimately forgettable slasher that may well have never made its way out of Mexico. But he didn’t. For he knew the secret to cinematic immortality: Demon faces fade into the ether, gruesome deaths dissipate into dust, but preposterous characters and dinosaur pyjamas will live forever.” Not Coming To a Theater Near You

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It’s also pleasingly sanguine, with some nice gore fx from 80’s supremo Screaming Mad George (a dagger blade shoved underneath through the chin of one unfortunate teen, and wiggling around messily in his mouth, is a standout). But it’s the over-the-top performances from the young (and not so young) cast that really makes this enjoyable (in a guilty pleasure type of way).” Hysteria Lives!

” …a great roller-coaster of cheesy thrills. Don’t Panic may be too campy to be scary, but it has been put together with thought and it adds supernatural touches to the age-old slasher clichés better than most. Yeah, I honestly recommend this and it rivals the extremely good (and from the same director) Grave Robbers from 1989.” A Slash Above…

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“Much like its American brethren, it’s nice to see that Mexican slashers hit all the same highs, lows, and laughs … Between the stabbings and throat slicing things are kept interesting by the lovely atmospheric score by Pedro Plascencia. It’s everything you want out of 80s horror…” Horror’s Not Dead

“Devilishly stupid, Don’t Panic is ridiculous, fun and totally enjoyable. It’s overflowing with unintentionally hilarious scenes that elevate an indecipherable plot. Yes, it’s awful, but it’s the best kind of awful! If you’re looking for a “best worst” horror movie to watch this Halloween, forget Troll 2 and get your hands on Don’t Panic!” Pop Culture Beast

“Sure, the acting is sub-par and the (very) bad audio dub is practically laughable but I’ve seen much worse come out of the 80’s. Though the last bits of Don’t Panic are more than satisfying, the final confrontation between Michael and “Virgil”, sadly, isn’t anything to write home about.” Icons of Fright

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“It’s amongst a very elite grouping of slashers that I consider to be perfect examples of their own kind of art. A balance of humor, horror and ineptitude that creates a symphony of trash cinema to the likes of which I am honored to experience again and again.” Atomic Caravan

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Alternate titles:

A Maldição de Ouija – Brazil
Virgil, la malédiction – France
Não Entre em Pânico – Portugal
El secreto de la ouija – Spain

Filming Locations:

Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico

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