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Elvira: Mistress of the Dark (1988)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Horror | 30 September 1988 (USA)
Upon arriving in a small town where she has inherited a rundown mansion, a famous horror hostess battles an evil uncle, and townspeople who want her burned at the stake.

Director:

James Signorelli
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Popularity
1,660 ( 254)
1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Phil Rubenstein Phil Rubenstein ... Director
Larry Flash Jenkins ... Technical Director
Cassandra Peterson ... Elvira (as Elvira)
Damita Jo Freeman Damita Jo Freeman ... Associate Producer
Tress MacNeille ... Anchorwoman
Edwina Moore ... Hairdresser
Mario Celario Mario Celario ... Rudy
Lee McLaughlin Lee McLaughlin ... Earl Hooter
Bill Swearingen Bill Swearingen ... Cameraman
Charles Woolf Charles Woolf ... Manny
Bill Dance Bill Dance ... Messenger (as William Dance)
William Cort William Cort ... Lawyer / Game Show Host
Sharon Hays Sharon Hays ... Game Show Girl
Bill Cable Bill Cable ... Cop
John Paragon ... Gas Station Attendant
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Storyline

When a chauvinist millionaire buys the television network where the sexy Elvira is the horror hostess of a late show, she quits her job with the intention of producing her own show in Las Vegas. However, the producers demand 50 thousand dollars from her and Elvira does not have the money. Out of the blue, she receives a telegram informing that her great-aunt Morgana died and she has an inheritance to receive. Elvira drives to the uptight town of Fallwell, Massachusetts, where her convertible breaks down. While repairing her convertible, Elvira inherits an archaic mansion, a recipe book and a poodle. Her great-uncle Vincent Talbot proposes to buy her book, but the poodle hides it in the sofa. Meanwhile, the conservative council of Fallwell feels uncomfortable with Elvira's clothes and behavior and does not let her find a job. But cinema owner Bob Redding and the local teenagers help Elvira. When she decides to cook a dinner to impress Bob, she uses Morgana's recipe and finds that it is... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Unpleasant dreams... See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Horror

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 September 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Elvira See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,660,041, 2 October 1988

Gross USA:

$5,596,267

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$5,596,267
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

NBC President Brandon Tartikoff had set his sights on producing an Elvira sitcom, but Cassandra Peterson wanted the character to have a big-screen outing prior to appearing in another weekly show. The monstrous success of Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985) (which also featured a popular established character as well as a brief cameo by Peterson) convinced Tartikoff and his fellow NBC executives to finance the movie. See more »

Goofs

Elvira uses her magic ring to cause a downpour, which douses the flames meant to burn her at the stake. Elvira and Bob should be soaked, but in the next shot when he unties her, they are completely dry. See more »

Quotes

Vincent Talbot: [to Elvira] You think you're someone special. Well, mark my words. I'll get you and your little dog, too!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The widescreen version is actually the regular full screen version but with the top and bottom blacked out. This is proven in the scene were the teenagers are watching Attack of the Killer Tomatoes! at the theater. For the scene were a woman with a shopping cart is running from an oversized tomato, the board with rollers the tomato is sitting on is cut off. As is the shot of Elvira's Elvis T-shirt when she suddenly sits-up from her nightmare. This is because the movie was shot in full screen, and matted for theaters. The extra space in the full screen version is dead space that was never meant to be seen. See more »

Connections

Featured in In Search of Darkness (2019) See more »

Soundtracks

I Put a Spell on You
Written by Screamin' Jay Hawkins (as Jay Hawkins)
Performed by Joanna St. Claire
See more »

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User Reviews

The cup(s) of horror runneth over with titillating humor
22 October 2001 | by Eric-1226See all my reviews

This movie is simply the best horror-film parody ever made. And it's also just one darned enjoyable flick. I guess you could call it a guilty pleasure. True, it is pure cornball, but I have grown to love it, and I watch it regularly every year around Halloween, since (naturally) several channels on TV routinely feature it as part of that select batch of Halloween pictures that just scream for annual broadcasting.

Extremely well filmed (IMHO), I am always really amazed at how nice it is to see it again each year – it holds up well and looks fantastic even today, after 13 years.

From a physical perspective, Elvira (Cassandra Peterson) - with that showgirl figure and that over-the-top tight-fitting black costume - just grabs your attention with both, um, *hands*, from the get go, and never lets go. But there's much more to revel in here than just her physical assets: her acting, her ditzy charm and irreverent risqué sense of humor will just have you lapping it up. In short, you'll just love Elvira from top to bottom (unlike the townies in the story, many of whom decidedly did not take kindly to her sudden arrival in their up-tight little burg in Massachusetts).

This movie is just busting out all over with titillating, slightly off-color humor (or: off-colour humour for those of you on the other side of the Atlantic) from start to finish. There are many funny and memorable lines in this movie of the double-entendre variety; it's hard to keep abreast of them all. (I'd list a few of my racier favorites here, but in the interest of not offending the delicate sensibilities of anyone reading this who is NOT into that sort of humor, well, it might be best for you to just go watch the movie and compile your own list).

I can't say anything bad about this movie at all, except that sadly it does end, and you are left wanting more (of Elvira). LOTS more. Alas, c'est la vie.


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