Mark Baines (Roy Jenson) is working a mine in Guanajuato, Mexico. His wife Jennifer (Samantha Eggar) comes to visit him in the mine. She accidentally causes a small rockslide that reveals some mummies that are missing their left hands. The workers at the mine are spooked by the sight. They believe the mummies are victims of a demon. When they refuse to go back into the mine Jennifer decides to go in to prove that their fears are only superstition.
Mark and Jennifer stumble onto a temple built by a satanic cult that practices human sacrifice to the devil by cutting off the victim’s left hand. In the temple they also find a small metal container in the shape of a hand. Mark takes the container back to their hotel. After getting drunk Mark opens the container and finds ashes. While he is asleep the ashes form into the shape of a hand. The hand creeps onto the couple as they sleep. When Mark is awakened by Jennifer’s scream his left hand becomes possessed by the eerie manifestation.
Mark takes off and ends up in Las Vegas where he wins at craps. He ends up attacked by a small-time hood, Frankie (Ted White) and his girlfriend, Angela (Haji) who want to know the secret of his winning. The hand forces him to kill both of them. Wanting to get away from the evil hand, Mark sets himself on fire.
Mark is buried at Our Lady of Hope cemetery in Englewood, California. The church there is run by Father Cunningham (Stuart Whitman). Mark’s corpse reanimates and digs itself out of his grave. He then severs his own hand. The hand escapes by attaching itself to patrolman Matson (Lew Saunders). As the possessed hand travels from person to person, Jennifer enlists Father Cunningham’s help in trying to find and destroy the hand.
“Demonoid” AKA “Demonoid: Messenger of Death” AKA “Macabra: La mano del diablowas” was released in 1981 and was directed by Alfredo Zacarias. It is a Mexican horror movie.
This is one of many severed hand movies. The difference here is that it is a Mexican film, and as far as I know, the only Mexican horror movie to feature a disembodied hand. It is also one of those Mexican films that play it straight unlike the ones from the fifties and early sixties that were so charming. Had it been, it might have improved the film. It was OK but not as interesting as it could have been. The movie started out with a bang but as soon as it advanced to present time the movie lost any atmosphere it could have had.
Erika Carlsson plays both the plastic surgeon’s nurse and the possessed woman in the beginning of the film that had her hand severed. She was only in the credits for her role as Nurse Morgan. Reportedly she holds the distinction of being killed twice as different characters in a single movie.