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Film / The Gate

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The Gate is a 1987 Canadian horror movie directed by Tibor Takács and starring Stephen Dorff.

Three children are left home alone for the weekend. Through a set of contrived circumstances, they open a gate to hell in the backyard.

Received a sequel in 1990, title Gate II: The Trespassers.

This movie provides examples of:

  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: The master demon is appropriately enormous in height.
  • Building of Adventure: Every scene occurs in or around the house.
  • Call-Back: Earlier in the movie, Terry tells Glen that a workman died while building his house years before he and his family moved in and that he was still stuck in the walls. Glen's father brushes it off a few scenes later as Terry making things up on account of struggling to deal with the recent death of his mother. Later, when a zombie busts through the wall of their house, Glen whispers, "It's the workman" but Terry quickly informs him that he made it all up.
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  • Darker and Edgier: The first film was PG-13 while the second film was rated R, mainly due to John's horrific transformation into one of the trinity demon gods.
  • Dream Intro: The film opens with the main character walking into an eerie empty house, then climbing a tree which gets struck by lightning and falls down... And then he wakes up to the sound of a tree being cleared in his backyard.
  • Everybody Lives: In part 2, Terrence, John, and Moe all come back to life at the end.
  • Eyes Do Not Belong There: The demons cause an eye to grow in the protagonist's hand at one point.
  • Our Demons Are Different: Mostly small, hunchbacked gray imps with one huge, four armed sloth thing leading them. They also have more Lovecraftian themes surrounding them than Satanic ones.
  • Separated from the Adults: The whole movie takes place while the parents are on vacation.
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  • Shapeshifter Guilt Trip: The demons appear as the parents seconds after they first arrive. They break their disguise before they even speak, but all they ever say is "YOU'VE BEEN BAAAAAD!".
  • Subliminal Seduction: Inverted. The record is openly occult and is actually part of the coincidence that summons the demons. Playing it backwards provides the spell to banish them.
  • Unexpectedly Real Magic: Some boys find a record with a recording of a demonic chant. They think it's amusing, and play the record. Because of multiple elements in place, the chant actually opens up a Hell Gate.

Alternative Title(s): The Gate II


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