MONSTER PORTAL (2021) Review of Cthulhu horror – free to watch online!

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Monster Portal is a 2021 British horror film about a cult that is about to awaken H.P. Lovecraft‘s most feared creature… Cthulhu! Also known as H. P. Lovecraft’s Monster Portal and formerly known as The Offering and Paranormal Cemetery.

Written and directed by Matthew B.C. (Eyewitness; Blood in the Water; Exorcist Vengeance; Medusa) from a story co-written by editor Scott Jeffrey and Mario von Czapiewski.

Co-produced by Scott Jeffrey (Spider in the Attic; The Mutation; Bats; Bad Nun: Deadly VowsCupidClownDoll) and Rhys Waterfield (Dinosaur HotelDragon Fury).

Cinematography by Jack Peter Mundy (Prototype; Easter Bunny MassacreMonsters of WarThe Legend of Jack and JillAmityville Scarecrow).

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The Jagged Edge Productions movie stars:
Sian AltmanCurse of Jack Frost; Alien Abduction; Crocodile Vengeance; The Curse of Humpty Dumpty
Louis James – Help; A Night in 97
Sarah Alexandra Marks – Witch 2022; Help; Exorcist Vengeance; Spider in the Attic; Easter Killing
Judy Tcherniak – The Surgeon
George Nettleton – Blood Myth
Richard Harfst –The Ghosts of Borley Rectory; Rise of the Mummy; The Candy Witch

Special makeup effects were provided by Chelsea Murphy.

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Our review:
Writer-director Matthew B.C. continues the promise he showed with his debut feature Medusa and to-a-lesser-extent Exorcist Vengeance with this low-budget take on Lovecraftian horror.

The Scott Jeffrey movie contains familiar themes such as grieving over a lost one and relationship issues leading to a breakup that is oft-used in his productions but thankfully here they don’t overwhelm the horror aspects. And, unlike Jeffrey’s many other films there is only a very minor amount of filler in what is already a short 77-minute movie.

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Even as far back as 1969’s The Dunwich Horror the issue of how to present Lovecraft’s other-worldly monsters has taxed filmmakers but Monster Portal gets by on some acceptably cheap CGI and by setting key scenes at night so the perils of the dodgy daylight dinosaurs seen in other Scott Jeffrey outings aren’t really an issue.

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Monster Portal is a somewhat decent attempt to tackle Lovecraft on a clearly crippling budget and for the most part, it kinda works. The cast is all decent, especially lead Sian Altman and Judy Tcherniak who plays the cantankerous housekeeper.

Meanwhile, Mike Ellaway delivers an effective orchestral moody score that compliments the proceedings well (he also scored Jurassic Valley; Exorcist Vengeance; The Curse of Humpty Dumpty and Dinosaur Hotel).

Adrian J Smith, MOVIES and MANIA

Other reviews:
The film’s low budget is obvious in nearly every frame but the monsters themselves are actually pretty impressive and director Matthew B.C. does a good job creating a properly ominous atmosphere […] The acting is a bit inconsistent but, for the most part, Sian Altman and Sarah Alexandra Marks are sympathetic in the lead roles and Judy Tcherniak goes so over-the-top as the housekeeper that she’s actually a lot of fun to watch.” Horror Critic

“Being a Scott Jeffrey film H.P. Lovecraft’s Monster Portal didn’t have the kind of budget that would let us see much in the way of giant unspeakable abominations. But it does manage to work in more creature footage than I expected and with some surprisingly good CGI too. The scenes are mostly short, but they are scattered through the film rather than just a bit at the beginning and end.” Voices from the Balcony

Cast and characters:
Sian Altman … Celine
Louis James … Rich
Sarah Alexandra Marks … April
Judy Tcherniak … Edda
George Nettleton … Nick
Richard Harfst … Peter
Elizabeth Sanderson … First Hoodlum
Helena Manchip … Second Hoodlum
Richard Lovell … Uber Driver
Chris Cordell … Hoodlum with a Hammer

Filming locations:
Pekes Manor House, Chiddingly, Hailsham, East Sussex, England (also used for Beneath the Surface and Spider in the Attic)

Technical details:
1 hour 17 minutes

More British movies
More H.P. Lovecraft movies

Trailer:

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