My very first video store was called “Hollywood Video” and it was located at the King of Prussia mall. It was a tiny place as home video was still in its infancy. The horror section was about the size of a closet door. I’ve always been fond of bragging that I watched every horror tape that was available but I realize now that is not true and I have been exaggerating all these years. The truth is that I could never bring myself to watch a film called DEMENTED (1980)!
A major reason for that is because DEMENTED is a rape movie but unlike say, LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT and I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE it doesn’t have nearly the reputation to push me into enduring it. In fact, when I worked at a video store years and years later I bought a used copy of DEMENTED for the place and I still never watched it- even for free. I suppose my main reason for resisting mostly involves the photos on the back, particularly one of the rapists wearing ghoulish masks. There’s also a photo of the attack in progress with a couple guys wearing stockings on their heads. There is nothing scarier than a stocking on the head. I’m reminded of both THE BOOGEY MAN (1980) and the SALLY STRUTHERS‘ TV movie A GUN IN THE HOUSE (1981) both of which freaked me out at around the same time.
Another thing that unnerved me about the box for DEMENTED was the fact that it was pink! There’s something twisted about using such a bright color in juncture with something horror related. Who would do such a thing? For a while DEMENTED was available on Netflix Streaming but it seems to have disappeared into the ether once again. Maybe that’s for the best. Though I have to say, watching the trailer now makes me think that the movie is probably too amateurish to be taken quite so seriously by me. Has my aversion been unwarranted all these years? I sorta love the synth-y soundtrack! In any case, the box still gives me the creeps.