Maintaining a straight face even as the action takes a turn toward the ludicrous, English horror entry “London Voodoo” should please genre fans, though it lacks the originality or name thesps that might’ve merited theatrical pickup. Debut feature for writer-helmer Robert Pratten is a mixed bag, but suggests better things to come, and will prove a viable rental item.
Yankee yuppies Lincoln (Doug Cockle) and Sarah (Sara Stewart) have just moved with their toddler daughter into a spacious London home, drawn here by transfer of his high-pressure corporate job. Her ambivalence about the uprooting suddenly changes upon discovery of two entwined skeletons hidden beneath the cellar floorboards. Reason for Sarah’s turnaround — and increasingly bizarre behavior — turns out to be her possession by the spirit of an African warrior-priestess killed here long ago. Slowly paced exercise is well-directed and shot, though some viewers may titter as the somewhat bland Sarah turns aggressive sex-bomb nutcase (“Faggot! If you can’t keep me satisfied, then I’ll find someone who will!” she barks at her astonished hubby) and terrorizes an au pair (Vonda Barnes) whose junior-seductress role seems gratuitous. Package is slick on a budget.