Glenn Kenny
January 19, 1996 AT 05:00 AM EST

LORD OF ILLUSIONS Scott Bakula, Famke Janssen (1995, MGM/UA, R/unrated, priced for rental) SALOME and THE FORBIDDEN Clive Barker, Doug Bradley (1973/1978, Redemption USA, unrated, $19.95) Though Illusions’ mix of the detective and gore genres is a little uneasy, and Bakula doesn’t quite convince as a hard-boiled detective, this story of a David Copperfield type who fakes his own death to escape a cult leader is horror maestro Barker’s most accomplished filmmaking effort. It features a cohesive plot and a nifty hook: the wobbly line between illusion as entertainment and the actual black arts. Salome and The Forbidden, combined on one tape and available in the U.S. for the first time, are both black-and-white silent shorts Barker and friends made in the ’70s. Arty and muddled, they contain wild visuals and amusingly uninhibited performances (Barker himself dances in the nude). And for all their graininess, the shorts possess a power Illusions lacks. Both tapes: B-

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