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Grave Secrets (1989): Dead and Breakfast

Grave Secrets (Donald P. Borchers, 1989)

Movie poster featuring shots of stars Soutendijk and LeMat.

How could this go wrong? Look at how much attention they lavished on that poster!
photo credit: IMDB

The IMDB trivia section for Grave Secrets, also known as Secret Screams (under which title it is as I write this available on Netflix Instant Streaming), is the directorial debut of producer Donald P. Borchers. It neglects to mention that Borchers would direct just two more films in the following two decades. Once you’ve seen Grave Secrets, you will find it all too easy to understand why.

Soutendijk and LeMat discussing their ghost problems whilst picnicking.

“There’s nothing quite like a picnic to take your mind off the ghost trying to kill you!”
photo credit: MGM Channel

Plot: Iris Norwood (Abwärts‘ Renée Soutendijk) has inherited an old bed and breakfast that is rumored to be haunted. She calls in local psychic David Shaw (The Long Shot‘s Paul Le Mat) to investigate. At first, Shaw is skeptical that anything is really going on in the house, but as the sexual tension grows between the two, Shaw slowly becomes convinced that something is, indeed, going on. (I didn’t mean to imply those two things are connected. The film may have meant to imply this, but if so, it failed.)

Soutendijk looking aggravated.

“You can sit there are not tell me where we’re going all you want. You’re still getting charged two bucks for every ninth of a mile.”
photo credit:

The best way to describe this is a basement-budget ripoff of the underrated 1980 fright classic The Entity, but if The Entity had been a made-for-TV movie that did nothing in the way of boundary-pushing and relied on ridiculously bad special effects instead of atmosphere to generate what few jumps it has. At least it stopped before revealing the oh-so-predictable secret relationship between the bad guy and…DAMMIT. Really, as with pretty much every movie containing Paul Le Mat, you would do very well to stay away from this one. *

Not hugely related to the film, but should be mentioned because of a title mix-up at Amazon: please note this is not the 1992 TV movie starring Patty Duke. It was released three years earlier and is a theatrical release.

Trailer…IF YOU DARE.

About Robert "Goat" Beveridge

Media critic (amateur, semi-pro, and for one brief shining moment in 2000 pro) since 1986. Guy behind noise/powerelectronics band XTerminal (after many small stints in jazz, rock, and metal bands). Known for being tactless but honest.

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