Tuesday, January 17, 2017
David Bowie does a very good job here, with the help of some great-looking makeup, playing what is not your classic vampire, but a new(for the 1980s anyway) type of blood-drinking creep. It's all very goth with the band Bauhaus kicking the film off with their gloomy "Bela Lugosi's Dead" tune and Catherine Deneuve playing an immortal Egyptian vampiress. Director Tony Scott, brother of Ridley, gives everything a very BLADE RUNNER-ish artsy-look. You get to see Susan Sarandon's boobs, a very young girl gets viciously snuffed and the ending (forced on Scott by the studio) doesn't make much sense. If they did change the ending a bit I probably woulda dug this a lot more as it is it's still a pretty stylish ride that would probably appeal a little more to 80s-obsessed mopey goth-types than myself.
Ultra-fashionable Japanese poster!:
Monday, January 16, 2017
Not sure what's actually going on in a lot of this movie but that's mostly due to watching a version of this that has tiny little English subtitles that frequently fall off the bottom of the screen. What I could make out though seemed like a pretty decent film about a cop who has a traumatic experience and then is afraid of guns. He's sent to a police station on an island where some gangs end up using the old ultra-violence and rape on each other. There's quite a bit of violence towards women, a couple of rapes, a guy who dies from a tree-stump up the ass and some unintentional humor from the wacky subtitles I could decipher. If you can find a good-looking, better-translated print of this somewhere(not sure if this exists?) I would recommend this for some John Woo-style, but way sleazier and goofier, Category III nastiness.
Monday, January 9, 2017
A band of cowboys, and one blonde lady, travel into Injun land in a greedy search for gold. They get picked-off one-by-one by an all-female group of topless Indian maidens. Amazingly, since this was released in 1959, we get to see long shots of our redskin-ladies, and their pale-face leader chief-lady, dancing around and letting their bosoms bounce about. That is really just about the only interesting thing about this western, well that and the fact that the screenplay was written by Ed Wood. Kinda dull but watch it if you wanna see one of the first topless-features I can think of.
Saturday, January 7, 2017
A sub-par Abbott & Costello rip-off duo(Wally Brown & Alan Carney) promise zombies for a Broadway show and then have to go to the jungle and find one. While there they bump into Bela Lugosi as a mad doctor who just so happens to make zombies. This movie is really dumb and you can't help but imagine it woulda been way better with A & C in the starring roles and was titled ABBOTT & COSTELLO MEET THE ZOMBIES! but if you can deal with a dumb 40s comedy, with the classic black slave zombie-type and a typically great Lugosi performance, I guess it's passable.
Somehow Brown and Carney made a whole series of films together but this looks like the only one that's even slightly interesting and I don't think Lugosi was in any of their other comedies.
Judging by that bloody Australian VHS-cover image up above you would think this might be one of those super grimy Jess Franco naughty nun extravaganzas but it's not really. I guess because this is one of the earlier examples of this women-in-prison-like sub-genre it's way more on the artsy-fartsy/tamer side of things. We do get a little lesbianism, some mild whipping and nun suicide but nothing is very explicitly shown outside of all the perky boobies. This is not to say it's a terrible film. It is a bit slow in spots but overall it's worth a look if you can deal with a drama on a snowy Saturday morning and if you've already seen all the wilder nuns-humping-nuns classics. If not check out SCHOOL OF THE HOLY BEAST for a great Japanese version of this weirdo fetish. AKA UNHOLY CONVENT and DIARY OF A CLOISTERED NUN
The actual movie poster gives you a better look at the actual content of this film:
Way before he blessed the world with his magnum opus BLOODSUCKING FREAKS director Joel M. Reed made a couple of sleazy 60s sexploitation epics. This one features a young Jennifer Welles, before she became a big star in 70s hardcore porn, in the softcore story of a young gal with a very monstrous stage mom(Honey Hunter, sadly this is her only appearance) who knows the way to get ahead is to use your sexy feminine charms on anyone and everyone who can make you a big Hollywood star. There's a very John Waters-esque stilted acting style going on which gives everything a super campy feel and the movie takes some odd turns. The assorted characters are quite the scummy menagerie including a photographer who practices shooting pictures of a blow-up Easter Bunny, a bald scumbag director and Georgina Spelvin(before she became infamous in THE DEVIL IN MISS JONES) as a lesbian talent agent which leads to the expected girl-on-girl scene. Reed himself also shows up in a small role. The main downside to this is it all ends on an unsatisfying note after a fairly powerful buildup but hey ya gotta start somewhere.
Sunday, January 1, 2017
For some reason I always assumed this was a prequel to the similarly-titled Mexican monster-filled flick THE SHIP OF MONSTERS but it isn't at all. This one is more like the Mexican version of ABBOTT & COSTELLO MEET FRANKENSTEIN except that they replace the famous duo with only one moronic bumbling idiot named Clavillazzo. Most of the film is a pretty straight-on comedy until it finally ends up in a castle chock full of south-of-the-border versions of famous monsters of filmland including a Frankenstein monster(who's also a very Lurch of THE ADDAMS FAMILY-like servant), a Wolf-Man, a very skinny Mummy, a Creature From The Black Lagoon, an ape-man and a Dracula(played by German Robles who stars in a lot of these early Mexi-horrors including the title role in the EL VAMPIRO series). While our main funny-man can get a little grating at times this is such a goofy oddity that it needs to be seen by monster-kids who want to see a fairly obscure monster mash-up.
Monster hijinks and stupid musical cues!:
So I guess the stereotype of everyone in Canada being nice is blown apart by this film about a gang of hooligans who terrorize a douchey rich dude and his model friend. This is a really good example of grimy 70s sleaze where just about everyone outside of the main female character(played by Brenda Vaccaro who went on to be in almost everything on TV after this) is a piece of crap. I guess you could also look at this as a good feminist film if you overlook the oddball rape scenes. It all plays like a very lower-budgeted, less deep version of STRAW DOGS. The weirdest thing to me was that one of the producers here was Ivan Reitman who went on to produce GHOSTBUSTERS and tons of similar big mind-numbing Hollywood-dreck. I guess everyone has to start somewhere before selling out to the Devil. AKA THE HOUSE BY THE LAKE
This trailer makes this movie seem like a haunted house deal which it isn't:
The dumb decade known as the 80s begat the even more retarded 90s which this is clearly a great example of. Horror movies in America were now forbidden from being serious at all and everything had to include as many "witty" one-liners as possible. Thanks Freddy Krueger!
The plot here involves a serial killer turned into a psychopathic snowman. I'd only previously seen the even worse sequel, REVENGE OF THE MUTANT KILLER SNOWMAN, up until this year and this one is slightly better. The main reason for this is the shower/rape by carrot-nose sequence starring Shannon Elizabeth(who I only really know from that Jay and Silent Bob movie but she also went on to become a big name in boring Hollywood crap that your mom probably watches). Of course you could just watch that one scene and call it a day but if you like comedy/slashers I guess this is the film for you.
Monday, December 26, 2016
This is a very slow-moving, made-for-TV version of the famous Edgar Allan Poe mystery. It has an all-star cast including Val Kilmer and Rebecca DeMornay and features George C. Scott in the main role of a retired inspector coming back on duty to solve the titular murder case. While Scott is always great and believable as an ass-kicking tough fellow this is not the greatest place to see him do this. We do get one slightly bloody double murder, a guy in a gorilla suit and then the rest is tough to slog through as it becomes your standard mystery tale. I probably shoulda watched the old Lugosi version or that 70s one instead.
Floaty heads, aahh!!:
This title did make for a great Iron Maiden song!:
Sunday, December 25, 2016
The first BLACK COBRA flick is kind of a rip-off of Stallone's COBRA with Fred "The Hammer" Williamson in the role of a Dirty Harry-ish police lieutenant ridding the streets of deplorable criminals and punks. By the time we get to this third film it's mostly just another Filipino mercenaries-in-the-jungle, exploding huts action movie. In fact if you had told me this was one of those cheap-o Cirio H. Santiago films from the 80s I would certainly believe it. In actuality it's an Italian production filmed in the Philippines where blowing up lots of stuff is apparently cheaper to do. "The Hammer", or Malone as he's called here, gets a male and female partner who run around the jungle, shoot many people and even do some almost Dolemite-level of bad kung fu. Maybe if they had sped-up the fight scenes like Rudy Ray Moore had it would have been slightly more exhilarating to watch.
There is a BLACK COBRA 4 but from what I've read that one is basically a rehashing of clips from the first 2 movies so I might not need to be in any rush to view it.
Wednesday, December 21, 2016
Unlike many of these Taiwanese movies with the word 'ninja' in the title this one actually has a ninja in it(or at least a guy with a very ninja-like outfit on), so that's something. It's also a pretty decent blend of action/kung-fu and for about the first half of the runtime it's a crime drama before morphing into your more standard kung-fu flick. There's quite a bit of variety on display besides your standard fist and foot-fighting you get gun-fu, motorcycle-fu, Frankenstein-fu, skiing-fu and even some unexpected rollerskating-ninja-fu. Muzak versions of Procol Harum's 'Whiter Shade of Pale' and 10CC's "Not in Love" play on the soundtrack which are not songs I would ever pick to be in an action-packed film, but what do I know? AKA NINJA AND THE THIEF and TO CATCH A THIEF. The director on this is credited as Tommy Lee but I'm pretty sure it's not the drummer of Motley Crue.
This was recut by the specialist of re-cutting and splicing cheap crappy things together, Mr. Godfrey Ho, and released the same year as NINJA THUNDERBOLT. This version is pretty similar except that you get some additional scenes of Richard Harrison to give it more appeal to those American round-eyes.
Thursday, December 15, 2016
This movie was originally released in 1947 under the title UNTAMED FURY and it was only an hour long but I guess that was too long for somebody so it was cut down to a half-hour and re-released in 1951 with the way sexier title of SWAMP VIRGIN. While I've never seen the full-length cut I don't really think I have to since from what I can tell all the action scenes are here. You get two young boys thrown into swampy lakes by their hillbilly dads and used as human gator-bait, a young lady cutting her dumpy overalls into a skimpy jean-bikini, some alligator-wrassling, a wise old black man who conveys this whole thrilling sorta-love-triangle tale to us and it all ends with some gunfire and quicksand antics. While not the most amazing thing I've ever seen at least it didn't waste much of my time.