The Comeback (1978)

comeback poster 1978 movie horror
6.5 Overall Score
Story: 5/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 7/10

Some decent jumps and nice atmosphere

Story lacks direction

Movie Info

Movie Name:  The Comeback

Studio:  Peter Walker (Heritage) Ltd.

Genre(s):  Horror/Mystery/Suspense

Release Date(s):  June 16, 1978 (UK)/September 1979 (US)

MPAA Rating:  R


Someone’s got an axe to grind…

Nick Cooper (Jack Jones) is a former superstar looking for his comeback album.  His marriage to Gail Cooper (Holly Palance) has recently fallen apart and returning to writing and performing is his goal.  In a rural home run by an old couple (Sheila Keith and Bill Owen) set up by his manager Webster (David Doyle), Nick plans to write his next great songs, but someone is hunting Nick and everyone who knows him…and the only comeback Nick could be facing is from a past mistake.

Directed by Peter Walker, The Comeback is also known as The Day the Screaming Stopped.  The horror-mystery-thriller was released to mixed reviews and received distribution by Troma.

The Comeback seems like a totally generic ’70s thriller.  It has some good concepts and ideas, but it doesn’t really live up to them.  By the end of the movie, you are thinking it is a pretty blasé thriller.


Apparently Bosley always wanted to be one of the Angels…

The movie has a completely odd set-up.  The movie seems to have peaks of horror but then nothing happens with them.  Nick’s wife is killed off the bat by a creepy mask wearing killer, but it isn’t discovered for ages…and ends with a goofy let-down ending.  The story builds to the “shock” that the caretakers are behind much of what is going on in Nick’s life…which was pretty obvious since they were pretty bizarre.  The movie is considered an early slasher however due to the style of the film.

The cast is rather typical for a ’70s movie.  Jack Jones was known for singing more than acting and that works for the role though Cat Stevens and Ringo Starr were allegedly considered for the role.  Nick’s new love interest is played by Linda Everett but both Melanie Griffith and Kim Baysinger were considered for the role.  The bizarre casting is Charlie’s Angels’ “Bosley” David Doyle as Nick’s manager Webster who randomly has a crossdressing scene to give his character more layers…I guess.


I’m your biggest fan!!!

The horror is done pretty well with a lot of build-up and suspense.  It is unfortunate that this atmosphere is blown on the story which just feels half-baked.  It is hard to tell what this movie is about for a lot of the movie (the creepy house, the apartment, the killer, Nick?), and the look of the film can’t overcome this uneven story.

The Comeback is a short horror film that is kind of what you’d expect going into it.  It isn’t great, it isn’t awful.  It looks like the period from which it sprung and it has enough scares to keep it from being a snoozer.  I could easily see this movie being remade sometime with a modern cast (or a woman lead)…just don’t get it confused with the Lisa Kudrow HBO series of the same title.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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