Sleepstalker [1995]

Genre: Horror
When he was a child, Griffin (Jay Underwood) witnessed the murder of his parents by a lullaby-singing, sand-sprinkling serial killer who thought he was "The Sandman" (Michael Harris). Seventeen years later, Griffin has grown up to be an aspiring journalist, but his parent's killer only now is being put to death. Before the Sandman is executed, he invokes a black-magic ritual that allows him to come back to life as a creature of sand who can change shape at will. His mission: to end Griffin's life, which mysteriously assures him immortality. Although this diverting B-movie thriller gets grounded by low-grade effects, it works around it via Michael G. Wojciechowski's stylish cinematography; the Sandman scattering to envelope one victim and later flying through air conditioning vents as a cloud of dust are effective. Despite some contrived moments and the mixed acting abilities of the supporting cast, Sleepstalker keeps things moving thanks to director-coscreenwriter Turi Meyer's confident guidance, good performances from Underwood and Harris, and an appropriately self-conscious sense of humor. (But keep an eye out for two blatant continuity errors.) The creepy opening is quite memorable. --Bryan Reesman

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