In 1980 a small little Indonesian film called Satan’s Slave was released. Over the years it became a cult hit and was incredibly hard to find. It became so popular over the years it was remade in 2017 and was very well received. Directed by Sisworo Gautama Putra (who helped write the screenplay as well) the film is definitely something to see. Well now thanks to the fine folks over at Severin you can watch this beauty uncut on Blu-ray, and let me say you should watch it.
Satan’s Slave centers around a family whose mother, Mawart has just passed away. She had left behind her husband Munarto, Daughter Rita, and son Tomi. One the day after her death Tomi begins seeing her. He of course freaks out and decides rather than talk to her that he should go and consult a fortune teller who tells him his entire family is in danger and the only thing that can help them is the use of good old fashioned witchcraft. Let me point out before I go further that this film has a very deep religious overtone. The family in question are Muslims who have all but abandoned their faith. The father cares only about work, the daughter about having fun, and now the son who is using black magic to solve his haunting. But don’t worry Rita has a boyfriend who advises they also use black magic to counter the evil spirt, as he believes a spirit can torment the family for 40 days. If this was not bad enough the dad gets advice to use a Shaman to perform protection rituals.
While all of this is happening a new housekeeper shows up named Darminah. She says she was hired to look after the house. Problem here being, you guessed it she is evil. And shortly after her appearance people begin dying, and the family starts seeing Kuntilanak’s which is essentially a ghost. To make matters worse the people that have mysteriously started dying are now coming back to life. The climax essentially features the family battling the evil beings while trying to reconnect with their faith.
Satan’s Slave is a unique film to say the least. The religious nature is very different from the standard family under attack from evil. Focusing on how a person’s religious beliefs can turn disastrous when they go towards evil religions are not something you see in a normal film. Yes there is blood, and gore, and hauntings, and jump scares, but the main theme of this picture is faith, and not abandoning yours. Its definitely a film to watch if you’re a horror fan, as I can guarantee you have not seen anything like it before. It moves slow, almost methodical but its never dull. Throw in a creepy score and good acting and you have a unique atmospheric piece that is something to see.
Presented remastered and fully uncut from Severin this looks great. They do such a masterful job with these transfers they are quickly becoming the go to company for obscure horror films. The audio is amazing. The score sounds fantastic as is bellows from your surround sound. Plus they once again outdid themselves with special features.
· Satan’s Box Office: Interview with Producer
· Indonesian Atmosphere: Interview with Screenwriter
· Satan’s Slave Obsession: Audio Interview with Remake Director
· Short Films Inspired By SATAN’S SLAVE By Remake Director : Jenny (2016)/Don’t Blink (2016)
Although not for everyone this is definitely a must watch for horror fans and just for people looking for something different. I recommend checking this one out.
Overall 3 out of 5 Stars!