After murdering a drug dealer at an amusement park, Hawk (Brad Fisher) and his gang of teenage thugs take Chandu (Frank Finlay) and his daughter, Lisa (Marcia Layton), hostage. As Hawk and company set up shop in Chandu’s mansion, Chandu warns them that they should leave before the mansion destroys them. Chandu has been summoning the forces of darkness and now they’re living in his basement. They already killed Chandu’s wife and now, they’re prepared to kill Hawk and the gang.
Hawk doesn’t believe a word that Chandu has to say. Plus, Hawk’s younger brother has been shot in the leg so they have no choice but to spend at least one night in the mansion. That turns out to be a big mistake. Before the night ends, Hawk’s brother ends up possessed, a woman gets pulled into a refrigerator, Hawk’s second-in-command drowns in a shower full of blood, and the mansion’s just getting started!
A Spanish-American co-production, Cthulhu Mansion was directed by Juan Piquer Simon, who earned a cult following for directing movies like Pieces, Slugs, and the immortal Pod People. Cthulhu Mansion never comes close to being as good as any of those films. Legitimately great actor Frank Finlay hams it up as Chandu and gets to wear some headgear that makes him look like Carnac The Magnificent but everyone else in the movie is forgettable and, with the exception of the blood shower, none of the deaths show any of the creativity that Simon brought to Slugs. Worst of all, Cthulhu doesn’t even make a cameo appearance.
While some may be tempted to watch because of the film’s appropriation of the Cthulhu name, resist the call of Cthulhu Mansion. H.P. Lovecraft wouldn’t have even stepped foot inside this house.