“The Hand” (1981)


Studio: Orion Pictures
Starring: Michael Caine, Andrea Marcovicci, Annie McEnroe, Bruce McGill
Directed by: Oliver Stone
Rated: R
Running Time: 105 min.

Synopsis: A comic strip artist’s hand is cut off in a freak car accident and the hand comes back and kills the enemies of the artist.


Chris Woods

This 80’s horror flick directed by Oliver Stone and starring Michael Caine has some great moments through out but plenty of boring ones too. This was another film I originally saw on USA Networks’ Saturday Nightmares in the late 80’s and from what I remember of it was that it was a pretty good horror film. When I saw it recently, I enjoyed some of it, but a lot of it was very slow and not enough suspense or scenes with the hand.

The film is about a comic strip artist (Caine) who is having trouble in his marriage and his wife wants to leave him. The two have an argument while driving down a road and an accident happens, causing Caine to use his hand which of course it happens to be the one he draws with. The hand is not found and Caine ends up with a robotic hand.

After the accident, it gets worst for Caine. His comic strip is taken away from him and given to another artist. His wife starts having an affair with her dance teacher and Caine is having nightmares about the accident and his hand. During all this there’s a long wait for the hand to actually kill someone. The first victim is a bum, played by Stone who is killed in an alley.

Caine ends up taking a job as a college professor in California leaving his family in New York. Soon, Caine has an affair with one of his students and soon murders start to happen when the hand follows Caine to his new location. There’s a double twist at the end that you kind of see coming but it’s done very well. I won’t give it away for those who haven’t seen it.

Good points to this film are Michael Caine’s performance. He does an excellent job in the lead role and there’s also a great supporting cast. The hand itself is creepy as hell, when they have scenes with it that is. Some good suspenseful moments in parts of the film and they do some cool P.O.V. of the hand, which plays out nicely.

Bad points to it are the very drawn out long moments at times. It takes a very long time for the first killing scene by the hand happens. Then after that there’s more slow moments until the next one. It starts to get real boring at times, especially in the middle of the film. It picks up a little at the end and finishes off good.

All in all, the film is worth a look at least once and when the horror moments happen they are worth watching plus the cast is top notch and the story is good but just a lot of slow dull moments you have to get through.