Speed Review: Death Spa (1989) No Pain, No Gain May 4, 2022 08:00
William Bumiller is the owner of a state of the art health club in Los Angeles, California that is managed almost entirely through a computer system designed and maintained by his late wife's brother David. Though it's been over a year since his wife's untimely death there is still tension and bad blood between them as David believes William is responsible for his sister taking her life. So when a string of "accidents" in the gym start occurring is it David acting out? Is the system on the fritz? Or is the ghost of William's dead wife out to ruin his life?
As a giallo fan the mystery / suspense approach a majority of the film traverses down combined with a healthy amount of gore and beautiful women left me pretty entertained. That was up until about the last twenty minutes when the film pulls a 180 and decides it wants to be an over-the-top supernatural American horror and spirals into insanity, and sort of ruining what had been up to that point a relatively balanced underrated 80's B-movie. Ultimately this is a film that will split viewers into two camps. You'll either love the cheesy over-the-top nonsensical ending and be bored with the meat of the film, or find enjoyment in most of it until the big party at the end and think it spirals out of control into a bloody mess.
Either way Death Spa does offers it's fair share of camp, it's got plenty of 80's American flare (which is my favorite decade for American film) and a lot of beautiful women in spandex or very little at all. Had the ending been more akin to the rest of the film this would have a been a solid new favorite for me, but even with that it still ended up being a pleasant surprise overall as I wasn't expecting much going in.