"PG-rated Horror from 1971, so you already know what to expect"
Seemingly inspired by "Village of the Damned" and the last fifteen minutes of "Rosemary's Baby", forgotten horror flick "The Brotherhood of Satan" manages to deliver a handful of entertaining moments. Unfortunately, those few moments come real early on, and nothing of any real interest happens throughout acts 2 or 3. I guess if you’ve seen one "Midwest town overtaken by maniacal senior-citizen Satan worshippers" flick, you've seen 'em all.Ben and Nicky are enjoying a quaint picnic in the seemingly quiet town of Hillsboro, while Ben's young daughter KT frolics about joyously. While on their way home the domesticated trio comes across a mysteriously crushed car... and yes, there are dead bodies involved. Ben wisely decides to head back into town in order to inform the authorities, but suffice to say that the family is not met with open arms. Ben is immediately accused of being a killer, while various townsfolk flip out when they see the young KT.
Interesting setup, dreary resolution: It seems that the town of Hillsboro is under the control of a coven. As in the Satan-worshipping kind, and not just the guys who do terrible things to goats. This coven of wrinkled old codgers has already kidnapped twelve local children, hoping to "transmogrify" into new, young bodies. Unfortunately, the old bastards need a thirteenth child. Enter Ben's precocious daughter.
The Brotherhood of Satan isn't an awful little horror flick, but there’s very little to get excited about here. Presented in a dry-yet-serviceable fashion by longtime TV director Bernard McEveety, it's an unconfusing and clearly plotted horror tale, but the truth is that the story is just not all that compelling.
The acting performances range from 'stagy' to 'silly', with B-movie icon Strother Martin (Slap Shot) a standout as the kindly town doc who moonlights as a Satan-loving lunatic. Adorable blonde Ahna Capri (Enter the Dragon) fills her every scene with sexy blonde goodness in lieu of acting talent, and L.Q. Jones (co-writer of the film) delivers an oddly enjoyable performance as Hillsboro's frustrated sheriff.
If you're a fan of stagy old gothics, you could do a lot worse than The Brotherhood of Satan, though it's a film that you won’t remember a week after watching it.Crafted and presented in a derivative and somewhat bland style, this is one that will probably appeal most to those who saw it way back when it was first released - though it's not likely to win over a lot of new fans.