‘Scream of the Banshee’ Syfy Channel Movie Review & Observations

by on March 27, 2011

in Entertainment, tv reviews

'Scream of the Banshee' movie posterScream of the Banshee on the Syfy channel comes from After Dark Films (Husk, The Final, Echelon Conspiracy).  It’s directed by Steven C. Miller and written by Anthony C. Ferrante (House of Bones).   It stars Lauren Holly (Chicago Hope, NCIS) and Lance Henriksen.  We also closely follow Todd Haberkorn as Otto, Marcelle Baer as Shayla Whelan & Leanne Cochran as Janie

It’s also the Syfy channel‘s 200th ‘original’ Saturday Night movie that I’ve chosen to cover with this TV review!

Scream of the Banshee opens to a man building his own weaponry and donning his armor.  The technique of filming did not feel like your usual Syfy Original movie, but more of a sepia tone look.  We then see this man and a few men chase what looks like a woman that turns out to be some form of a monster and he ends up capturing the thing’s head in some kind of ‘decapitating the head box.’

We then flash to modern times, and a woman, Professor Isla Whelan (Holly), is doing inventory in a classroom setting.  Then during a long and convoluted scene, where a student finds a box that has been sent to them and it has the man’s armor glove and another finds a box, THE box with the thing’s head in it, was also sent to them.  The teacher thinks she hears sounds coming from the box, and says “It sounds like it’s breathing.

Ya know this isn’t good…  and then they discover that the armored glove fits into what looks like a locking mechanism on the box.  They end up opening it and it’s got one heck of a looking head inside.  (Not good, not good, not good!!!)  Then the eyes pop open and a scream erupts from the thing and it vanishes while everyone in the building collapses from pain of the scream in their heads.

Lauren Holly in 'Scream of the Banshee'The Banshee’s first victim is a building security guard, as she comes screaming out of a bathroom stall behind him.

Henriksen doesn’t show up until about half an hour into the movie.  He’s a retired professor but he’s first seen in videos of his ranting on and on.  He shows up in person in the last half hour.

The movie has a low-keyed energy to it that lends itself to a bit of tension.  After the initial event, our main cast of characters deals with “wild and vivid” hallucinations of the banshee trying to scare our characters to death.


For Syfy’s 200th original movie, this wasn’t one of their usual hokey movies peppered with hokey effects, hurried writing and flat deliveries.

Scream of the Banshee had an even keeled pace to the story, filled with plausible deaths at a mature pace that didn’t feel overboard, when compared to their usual fun Saturday movies.  The monster itself had two different looks and both were pretty decent.  Creepy decent.

But it IS a slow moving, developing story.  Slower than most of their projects.  As my ‘test audience’ put it, it’s alright.  And that’s good because usually my test audience is gagging themselves by the first 10 minutes into most of the Saturday night fare.

But alas, in the last 20 minutes of Scream of the Banshee, the smooth pace of the story fell apart as the ending felt like the writers had found themselves written into a corner and they started pulling at straws to wrap up the story.  That’s a shame, considering it had drawn me into its web of a plot.

Regardless of the ending unraveling, this was one of Syfy channel‘s better movies and I would not be surprised if it pulled in higher than average ratings for one of their Saturday night movies.

We’ll see, wont we!?

PS:  Has Lauren Holly had any “work” done?  She seems… different from her NCIS days… or was I just not paying attention then?

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Alexi March 29, 2011 at 4:48 pm

No, Lauren Holly hasn’t had any ‘work’ done since NCIS, since USA likes to replay her episodes, people forget that that NCIS was close to 4years ago. She’s simply aging.

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