Demonic Doggy

Devil Dog: The Hound From Hell

As horror movie “monsters” go, you’d have to dig deep to find one worse than the malevolent mutt in Devil Dog: The Hound From Hell (1978). Beside boasting one of the worst movie titles to ever come out of a movie studio boardroom, the purgatory pup, with horns, looks likes he’s been listening to a bit too much punk rock and dressing like Liza Mannelli.

With no attempt to explain why, a Northern California suburban satanic cult in nutty purple robes buys a female German shepherd, ties her to a pentagram, and invokes you-know-who to use the dog as a host. To what end? To do evil stuff. Duh.

Devil Dog: The Hound From Hell

The possessed dog give birth to ten pups, one of which ends up in a middle-class household with shag carpeting for miles: dad, sexy mom, a teen due and a pre-teen tweener. The family dog was just run over, so time to get over it and accept the new little poop maker from a stranger.

Devil Dog: The Hound From Hell

A year later, Lucky (slick name) make his eyes glow and bad things happen. The maid catches on fire. Dad nearly sticks his hand into Hollywood lawn mower blades. Prince, the neighbor’s suspicious Great Dane, mysteriously gets chomped to death. Now it’s the Dog Formerly Known as Prince. And yeah, his owner ends up face down in a really nice swimming pool. (It should be noted Lucky stays in regular dog mode and only powers up when he needs to eliminate perceived threats to domain.)

Devil Dog: The Hound From Hell

His family now under the spell of Lucky and doing bad things themselves (the son stole a watch, the criminal), dad figures things out and consults a hippie zodiac woman who tells him he’s f’d in the b-hole unless he goes to Ecuador to find a spiritual Indian Shaman in a cave who draws a protective pentagram on dad’s palm.

Devil Dog: The Hound From Hell

Dad comes home and draws Devil Dog to the industrial plant where he works in a plush office. Cornered in a room with pipes blowing off a little steam, D-Dog appears all dressed up and about ten times the size he used to be. Hate to clean up after one of his pooping sprees. This, of course, is one of the lamest special effects in modern horror cinema – it’s a projected image, with Lucky barking out his bloodthirsty tales while dad struggles with emoting.

Outside of dad shining his protected palm at Lucky and sending him back to Hell’s Kennel, you already know the “twist” ending – and it has a lot to do with you shutting off the TV.

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