Movie: Crowhaven Farm
My Rating: 1 star
Oh wow! Was this movie ever a piece of garbage! But, of course I was expecting that because this is a made-for-TV movie from 1970. But, I definitely still wanted to see this film because these old stinkers can be really funny to watch. And, where else was I going to find a story about creepy, murderous Puritans just in time for Thanksgiving?
This is the story about a young, struggling couple from New York (Maggie and Ben,) who go to live on a farm they’ve just inherited. (Although, I think the 70s definition of “young couple” is a little different from ours. These actors each look about 40). This inheritance is a windfall, because they’ve been having a hard time making ends meet in Manhattan. Plus, the busy city life has really been stressing them out—especially since they’ve been trying for (and failing at) having a baby. This could be just what the couple needs to make a fresh start.
But, Maggie is getting a really creepy feeling about the place—like she’s lived there before in a past life . . . and had come to an untimely end. And, whenever she goes into the yard, she’s been seeing visions of evil pilgrims, dragging away a woman who looks remarkably just like her, to kill her for being a witch. Spooky! Things get even weirder when a mysterious, dying, old woman comes to visit, and practically forces the couple to adopt a creepy, but beautiful, little 10-year-old girl, Jennifer. Even grosser, little Jennifer and Ben become almost immediately, skin-crawlingly close. What’s wrong with these screenwriters?!? That’s just disgusting.
This movie is from 1970, so I knew it was probably also going to have some hilariously outdated social conventions. That’s always good for a laugh. And boy, did it deliver! The interactions between men and women in this story are really quite staggering. Early on in the film Maggie’s husband yells at her, “You’re not getting a job, and that’s final!” Men grab women and forcefully kiss them on their mouths, against their will. And, the doctor treating Maggie for her infertility kindly suggests to her that all the ghosts she’s been seeing are probably just hysterical hallucinations due to her childless state. “Yes, that could be it,” she meekly replies.
I think this movie is definitely worth a watch. It’s good, spooky, Thanksgiving-themed fun, and full of so much unwitting humor! This was definitely meant to be a horror film—or as much of a horror film as they could get away with putting in a TV movie in the 70s. (So, it’s pretty tame). And, being a TV movie, it’s mercifully short—only 75 minutes. But, it’s ridiculously silly and good for a few laughs. So, go ahead and rent this one.