KANTEMIR (2015) Reviews and overview

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‘If you die in the play you die for real’

Kantemir is a 2015 American horror feature film directed by Ben Samuels (Eyes of the Dead  aka 6:15) from a screenplay written by Mark Garbett and Ralph Glenn Howard. The movie stars Robert Englund, Diane Cary and Daniel Gadi.


A group of actors gather in a remote Northeastern town to rehearse for a mysterious stage production, only to be plunged into a hellish world where their real lives mirror the grisly story of the play.

John (Robert Englund), a notorious horror movie icon, who has fallen from grace, witnesses the murder of a cast member but when he alerts the group, no one believes him, and the harder he pushes to persuade them, the more unstable he appears.

As John struggles to retain his sanity, a cat and mouse game ensues between him and the mysterious director, Nicholas. As the theatre games continue and the actors slip further into their roles, the body count rises…

The film was released on DVD in the UK by High Fliers Films on 11 June 2018 as Transylvanian Curse

Buy DVD: Amazon.co.uk


“Nothing sticks out as particularly poor, though nothing stands up as noticeably noteworthy, either […] Kantemir is so inoffensively unremarkable when all things are considered that it can neither be loved nor hated.  A touch underdeveloped, and also a touch dull, Kantemir is a mild movie that just simply “is.” Culture Crypt

“The film itself plods along at an even pace which can either be seen as a slow build or as most people will see it dull. You can’t help but watch Kantemir and think they were trying to make a modern take of Curtains (1983) which is a far superior film. It is an interesting idea and everyone plays their roles well…” Horrorscreams Videovault

“The film never places any more twists on it than revealing what is happening. As a horror film, Ben Samuels never does much that pushes the deaths of the various characters to an extreme or for suspense. You come out feeling that the film had an idea that would have worked far better as a half-hour episode of The Twilight Zone (1959-63).’ Moria

“It isn’t bad. It’s just run of the mill – which is worse. A shame really as, given the unusual premise, in more creative hands it could have been much better. On the plus side it does have Justine Griffiths who would look good even reading a telephone directory…” Nabokov95

Main cast and characters:

  • Robert Englund … John – Nightworld; The Midnight Man; Fear Clinic; Heartstopper; The ManglerA Nightmare on Elm Street franchise; V; et al
  • Diane Cary … Rebecca – Tales from the Crypt TV series; V
  • Daniel Gadi … Nicholas
  • Justine Griffiths … Wendy – Watch Me
  • Alanna Janell … Allison
  • Stuart Stone … Brad
  • Sean Derry … Lars
  • Joshua Elijah Reese … Officer Montgomery
  • Neil Samuels … Officer Wiles
  • Bingo O’Malley … Ancient One
  • Cindy Jackson … Paramedic


The film was released on DVD in Germany as Nightmare at Horror Castle

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