DARK TOWER (1989) Reviews and overview

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‘In a city that never sleeps… this building is a nightmare’

Dark Tower is a 1989 released horror film about an office block that is haunted by a deadly presence targeting the building’s architect.

Directed by Freddie Francis and Ken Wiederhorn [both credited as ‘Ken Barnett’] from a screenplay co-written by Robert J. Avrech (as Robert J. Averech), Ken Blackwell and Ken Wiederhorn, based on Avrech’s story. Produced by John R. Bowey, Paco Poch, David M. Witz) and Sandy Howard [uncredited].

The movie stars Michael Moriarty, Jenny Agutter, Carol Lynley, Theodore Bikel and Kevin McCarthy.

Blu-ray release:

Vinegar Syndrome is releasing Dark Tower on Blu-ray on March 2nd 2021. Special features:

Newly scanned and restored in 2K from its 35mm interpositive
Dark Inspirations – An interview with special effects artist Steve Neill
Promotional still gallery
Reversible cover artwork
SDH English subtitles
Region A Blu-ray


After a window cleaner plunges to his death from a Barcelona high-rise office building, several people come to investigate, including security consultant Dennis Randall (Michael Moriarty).

Randall cannot locate a problem but decides to investigate further when more gruesome deaths take place inside and around the office building. His investigations prove that there is a sinister force behind all the deaths, a supernatural entity, that hates humans…


“The pacing somewhat recovers with the finale, wherein it essentially becomes a haunted house movie in a skyscraper […] Poltergeist III is an obvious point of reference, as both revolve around high-rise buildings that are as much a character as any actor in the film, but Dark Tower lacks the in-camera effects that make Poltergeist III so effective.” Broke Horror Fan

” …everyone becomes overwhelmed by the awesome vapidity of the film. Randall becomes possessed by said spirit, apparently Carolyn’s dead husband, and barks out the whole back-story like a steaming hairball into Carolyn’s lap. Inexplicably he becomes a cheap rubber zombie and chases Carolyn around the building…” Lost Video Archive

“The film’s a mess, as one would expect based on the two directors who wanted their names nowhere near the final cut. I can’t imagine the script would have ever been translated into a successful film, but the movie is full of continuity errors that are hard to know whether to blame on faulty editing or just sh*tty storytelling.” The Pink Smoke

” …the whole thing boils down to a movie version of one of those old EC comics. That isn’t all that surprising given that director Freddie Francis directed a couple of the better British horror anthologies that took their inspiration from those same comics (Doctor Terror’s House of Horrors and Tales from the Crypt). If the events of Dark Tower had been condensed down to a twenty-minute segment, it might have been watchable.” Stomp Tokyo

“When things get intense, and they rarely do, we’re often shown supernatural life-threatening situations with alarming music and ominous camera movements taking place inside the walls of the building which, by the way, looks much more threatening from the outside. Dark Tower has an interesting gimmick, but it chickens out on us after the first kill.” Tales of Terror

” …dull, talky, and incoherent haunted-skyscraper suspense thriller.” TV Guide

“Moriarty has always had a weird energy about him that makes him fun to watch.  If it had anyone else in the role, Dark Tower might’ve been even more torturous to endure.  I especially liked the scenes of him mumbling to himself while doing research on his computer.  Agutter (using an American accent) is pretty much wasted, but Kevin McCarthy gets to chew the scenery late in the game…” The Video Vacuum

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Choice dialogue:

Dennis Randall [Michael Moriarty]: “Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action. This is the third time!”

Sergie [Kevin McCarthy]: “The time has come, I am ready to spit in the eye of death”

Cast and characters:

Michael Moriarty … Dennis Randall
Jenny Agutter … Carolyn Page
Carol Lynley … Tilly
Theodore Bikel … Max Gold
Kevin McCarthy … Sergie
Anne Lockhart … Elaine
Patch Mackenzie … Maria
Bob Sherman … Williams (as Robert Sherman)
Ricardo Azulay … Charlie (as Rick Azulay)
Ramiro Oliveros … Joseph (as Radmiro Oliveros)
Jordi Batalla … Mueller
Jaime Ros … Beck (as Juame Ross)
Monica Fatjo … Rebecca
Juan Ramón Romani … Philip Page
Mara Vador … Rebecca’s Mother (as Mara Bador)

Filming locations:

Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain, in 1987

Technical details:

91 minutes


Director Ken Weiderthorn left the production or was sacked and Freddie Francis took over.

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