The Serpent and the Rainbow Blu-ray Review – Enjoyable 80’s Wes Craven Horror

Having recently taken a look Wes Craven’s horror The Hills Have Eyes II (1984) I was left far from impressed, may be his 1988 film will fare better. I’ll admit this one has gone under my radar; it’s a zombie horror that stars Bill Pullman.

So without further ado here’s my The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988) blu-ray review.

  • The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)
  • Genre: Horror
  • Directed by Wes Craven
  • UK Rating 18
  • Discs: 1
  • Released By Fabulous Films
  • Blu-ray Released: 4 May 2015


Dennis Alan (Bill Pullman) is sent to Haiti by a pharmaceutical company to recover the secret drug used in Haitian Voodoo to create zombies. The aim is see if the drug can be used for good such as curing various conditions. However upon arrival he discovers that in his pursuit of his goal his own life may very well be in danger.

Style / Direction

The film is directed by Wes Craven whilst the cinematography is handled by John Lindley. Craven does a very good job of keeping the story interesting helped in no small way to high tempo of the storytelling. The locations used include small towns and villages set by nearby jungle. I’d have to say this is a very well made and good looking horror movie.

Music / Audio Effects

The music is composed by Brad Fiedel.

Acting / Characters

Bill Pullman stars as Dennis Alan a man sent to recover a drug that turns people into zombies. He plays the role exceptionally well and I found myself fully invested in his character’s plight.

Cathy Tyson stars alongside Pullman as Marielle Duchamp and provides a character that is both his guide and lover. Also worth noting is the casting of Michael Gough as one of the men responsible on sending Dennis Alan on his search.

Good acting all-round help to make this an enjoyable watch.


  • Bill Pullman as Dennis Alan
  • Cathy Tyson as Marielle Duchamp
  • Zakes Mokae as Dargent Peytraud
  • Michael Gough as Schoonbacher
  • Paul Winfield as Lucien Celine
  • Brent Jennings as Louis Mozart
  • Conrad Roberts as Christophe Durand
  • Badja Djola as Gaston
  • Paul Guilfoyle as Andrew Cassedy
  • Dey Young as Deborah Cassedy
  • Francis Guinan as American Doctor
  • Aleta Mitchell as Celestine
  • Badja Djola as Gaston
  • Philogen Thomas as Priest
  • Evencio Mosquera Slaco as Old Shaman

Conclusion: The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988) Film Review

I’ll happily admit this was a Wes Craven film that had passed me by but one I enjoyed. The zombie theme is not the normal ones you see with mindless husks walking slowly toward you. No this is one based on what happened in Haiti in which a drug was administered to victims that gave the appearance that they were dead while in actual fact they were alive. This resulted in many people being buried alive.

Craven delivers a fast paced and highly enjoyable horror movie that’s made all the better for having Bill Pullman in the lead role. There are plenty of mind-bending hallucinations that result in plenty of scary moments.

So if you are looking for a slightly different horror film then I highly recommend taking a look at this one.

the serpent and the rainbow blu-ray review

Craven delivers a fast paced and highly enjoyable horror movie

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Conclusion: The Serpent and the Rainbow Blu-ray Review

There’s good news on the picture quality front as the image is clean of speckles and is nice and sharp. Overall I have nothing really negative to report which is always a good thing and should now be the norm.

So the audio and visuals are good but what about the extras? Well all you get is the theatrical trailer but I’m fine with that and as I say time and time again, image quality is my number one priority. If a few interesting extras are included then even better.


  • Theatrical Trailer

Popcorn Cinema Rating:

The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)





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The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988) Trailer

For those of you yet to see the film I’ll leave you with a little taster…

Clip may not be representative of the blu-ray version

What Do You Think?
Summary: The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988) Blu-ray Review
The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988) Blu-ray Review

Movie title: The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)

Duration: 98 mins

Director(s): Wes Craven

Actor(s): Bill Pullman, Cathy Tyson, Zakes Mokae, Michael Gough, Paul Winfield, Brent Jennings

Genre: Horror

  • Movie Rating
  • Blu-ray Picture Rating
  • Extras


Craven delivers a fast paced and highly enjoyable horror movie.


  • Fast paced and highly enjoyable horror
  • Bill Pullman
  • Good Picture Quality


  • Lacking Blu-ray Extras