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A mad journey into the mind of the depraved!

A mad journey into the mind of the depraved!
Recommended for devolved primates only!

Monday, April 23, 2018

WONDER WOMEN (1973)



 The plot of this movie seems like something some knucklehead would have made up to make one of those modern day throwback "grindhouse"-type flicks but strangely enough this was actually made back in '73. It deals with mad-scientist/gang boss lady  Dr. Tsu(Nancy Kwan) who has a whole island of female kung-fu killers that she sends out to kidnap the world's top athletes so she can cut them up and create a sort-of super-jock/Frankenstein creation. Also Sid Haig(back when he had an almost full head of hair) acts as her sidekick/money-man. There's lots of groovy 70s fashion on display, gargantuan afros, kung-fu and gun-fu fighting, a ridiculously long chase scene and nekkid supervillainesses. Our hero, Ross Hagen, comes of as a bit dull to me but overall I still find this one more entertaining than any of the big James Bond flicks from this era that it seems to be emulating/spoofing? Just make sure to skip over the Filipino cock-fighting scene if you're a big rooster lover.




                                                       That's one clunky tagline!!:




Thursday, April 12, 2018

A MINUTE TO PRAY, A SECOND TO DIE (1968)


 As far as spaghetti-westerns go this one doesn't really stand out much. The main character here(Alex Cord) has to deal with developing a shaky gun hand and generally doesn't come off as being all that exciting. There's a bunch of political corruption, vigilante gang justice, a corrupt marshall(Arthur Kennedy, who would go on to be that inspector jerk in THE LIVING DEAD AT MANCHESTER MORGUE) and many shootouts. This isn't a bad film overall, and it's shot really well, but there's probably a zillion more entertaining Euro-westerns you could watch before this one. AKA DEAD OR ALIVE and OUTLAW GUN





This movie does have a great title and The Flesh Eaters must have agreed:

Saturday, April 7, 2018

THE BEATNIKS (1960)


 Since I don't think you could really consider anyone in this movie a beatnik of any sort the title is a just a tad misleading. The plot actually deals with a group of street hoodlums/petty thieves who, after robbing a convenience store, happen to run into a talent agent who offers the gang leader(Tony Travis) a shot at becoming a pop star. The film is pretty clunky(like for example; why does this producer guy offer this piece of shit hoodlum anything after he just smashed into his car?) but moves along at a brisk enough pace that it still works as an entertaining look at 50s juvenile delinquents. My favorite character, who only appears briefly, is the old lady owner of a craphole diner named "Mama" who possesses the most cartoonish accent I've possibly ever heard. The original working title was SIDEBURNS AND SYMPATHY which is a lot more accurate. Give it a watch for some old-timey knife fights, Sinatra-esque crooning, and various 50s hooligan shenanigans. The director of this "raging teenagers in their 30s" epic was Paul Frees who is most well known for being a voice actor in tons of animated stuff and maybe most importantly on THE BANANA SPLITS program. This would be his only directing job which is kind of a shame because he certainly had that exploitation movie feel down.

"Revealing as it holds the answers to the beatnik questions all America is asking!":



 

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

THE GREAT SILENCE (1968)


 A couple of years before this, director Sergio Corbucci made the great DJANGO, which is one of my favorite spaghetti-westerns ever. After seeing this one, in it's revamped, restored and re-beautified version, at a recent theatrical showing in NYC, I'm thinking this actually tops it. Perhaps it's Klaus Kinski's standout performance, though all the acting in this is pretty top-notch, or the snowy setting which reminded me of THE CUT-THROATS 9, another favorite. Most of all though it's probably the bleak ending that makes this one really stand out for me though it's probably not everyone's cup of tea. . Corbucci drives home quite the anti-capitalist message here which I'm not even sure I totally agree with but it's all done so well that it's hard to find any other faults here. 
 There's an alternate cut of this that actually has a happy ending which I think really reduces the films power and effect.
 The hot and sexy Vonetta McGee would go on to be in BLACULA and that women-in-prison flick THE BIG BUST OUT. This was only her second role and while everyone blames the movies downer ending on it not getting a release in America or England I can't help but think that her interracial love scene played at least a small part in this being viewed as pretty controversial for the times. 




Saturday, March 31, 2018

SLAVERS (1978)


 So after the movie MANDINGO and the T.V. mini-series ROOTS were big deals a handful of these "African slavery was really really bad!" films appeared to cash in. This one might be the most obscure which is a little odd because it has a pretty famous cast including Ray Milland as an evil Arab slave-trader, Cameron Mitchell as one of his cohorts and Britt Ekland as a sexy Swedish lady and the love interest of pretty much everyone she meets which is understandable. There's some fairly shocking stuff for the time including a newborn black baby being stomped to death, slaves in a pond being used for target practice and generally being treated like subhuman garbage. Overall this was pretty well done for what's basically just a big epic Eurotrash(it was made in Germany) exploitation flick and is pretty watchable Saturday afternoon viewing if you don't mind the downer vibe.
 Probably the weirdest bit of trivia about this film is that it was allegedly released on VHS in France as MAFIA COP?? That's just bananas!!






CANNIBAL TERROR (1980)


 So rumour has it that this was directed by Jess Franco under the pseudonym A.W. Steeve. Apparently the truth is Steeve is actually a French director named Alain Deruelle who worked with Franco at times(co-directed JAILHOUSE WARDRESS from 1979) so this thing plays like a sub-par Franco cannibal flick if such a thing is imaginable. The plot deals with a couple of knuckleheaded thieves who decide to kidnap a little girl and hold her for ransom. Things eventually get too hot so they flee to a safehouse that just so happens to be located right next to cannibal country(which in this case seems to be in the countryside of Spain?). There's a rape scene, gratuitous bathtub nudity and one big gross-out gut-munching moment but for the most part these cannibals are just used as background characters. Also these might be the most European-looking cannibals ever used on screen with some of them barely having a tan and just some paint on their faces making them resemble Toucans for some reason. As far as cannibal flicks go this isn't a very good example of one but it has peaked my interest in Deruelle's filmography since I don't think I've seen any of his other films and with titles like RAGE PORNO I'm not sure I can just pass those up.


Tuesday, March 27, 2018

MIDNIGHT RIPPER (1986)


 OK, so this Italian giallo, which actually plays more like an 80s American slasher movie for a lot of it's runtime, might have one of the stupidest scenes I've seen in a long time. A lady is being threatened by our midnight slasher with a large knife and she fights him off with an electric egg beater. Now I will grant the movie that they look like they had some sharp attachments on the end of them but they were still basically just a couple of  rotating whisks. To put an appropriately dumb exclamation point on this scene after she inevitably pulls the cord out of the wall she just gives up and turns her back to this knife-wielding maniac I guess in hopes that he will magically change his bloodthirsty mind. Not director Lamberto Bava's best work but if you just want to see something very simple and bloody that gets a bit repetitive before it's all over and throws in an absurd ending then give it a look if you can find it. AKA YOU'LL DIE AT MIDNIGHT and MIDNIGHT KILLER




I guess this movie has at least one fan since someone went through the trouble of making a music video for it:

Sunday, March 25, 2018

THREE MEN TO KILL (1980)


 Most of this French thriller starring Alain Delon is a pretty dull affair but there is one crazy car chase scene so that's something. The story has to do with Mr. Delon getting involved with some mobsters after helping a guy who he thinks was in a car crash but was actually executed. Delon was way better back in the stylish 60s artsy films he is more well known for and French cinema in general was better. In addition to the car chase and a few gunfights leading lady Dalila DiLazzaro, who I recognized from a few giallos and other Italian horror flicks, is nice enough to get nekked for the viewers still I wouldn't really recommend this one to anyone.

Friday, March 23, 2018

CHATO'S LAND (1972)


 If you ever wanted to see how amazingly fit Charles Bronson was in his prime this would be a good place to discover that. When I say "in his prime" that's not exactly accurate since he was a little over 50 years old at this point but I can't imagine how he coulda been in any better shape at any point. This is the film where Bronson plays a half-breed American Indian, named Chato, who is on the run from a posse, lead by Jack Palance, seeking revenge for the killing of a white-man that Bronson made in self-defense. For a lot of the movie Bronson stays unseen and Palance is really our main focus portraying a Civil War veteran who leads our justice-seeking band of fairly racist pale-skins. Papa Walton(Ralph Waite) is another memorable member and a real jerk here. There's rape(offscreen), a scalping, a cooked dog and some other exceptionally violent bits that I would imagine could never be acceptable in any PG-rated movies for the last 40 years. A great cast and top-notch acting put this one towards the top of the western and Bronson heap for me.
 Director Michael Winner would work a whole bunch more with Bronson after this. Most importantly on the first 3 DEATH WISH films.
   



Weird-ass double-feature paired up with this comedy/drama from a  few years earlier:



Saturday, March 17, 2018

LOVE CAMP (1981)


 The idea of a cult of naked, hump-crazy hippies that worship Laura Gemser as a divine goddess seems like something I must have dreamed a few times in the past. Little did I know there was an actual film which put my dreams down for posterity. The plot here, what little of it there actually is, is obviously a take-off on the whole Jim Jones Jonestown massacre but with a way sexier outcome. There's a lot of things to love about this one besides just worshipping the Black Emanuelle though including Tanga, Gemser's constantly flexing-for-the-camera henchman who dispatches of those who dare leave this cult of love and mandatory orgies, a bunch of clunky 80s disco, a blonde head hippie fellow(Christian Anders) who prances around like a stoned John Philip Law and of course tons of naked flesh. A goofy sexploitation ride that's a new favorite up there towards the top of the Black Emanuelle series pile probably just under EMANUELLE IN AMERICA and EMANUELLE AND THE LAST CANNIBALS for me. AKA DIVINE EMANUELLE: LOVE CULT

Black Emanuelle series:

THE REAL EMANUELLE (1974) Obviously made before the first Black Emanuelle film but retitled for it's English release to be part of the series later on.
BLACK EMANUELLE (1975)
BLACK EMANUELLE 2 (1976) The one film without Gemser
BLACK EMANUELLE, WHITE EMANUELLE (1976)
EMANUELLE IN BANGKOK (1976)
BLACK COBRA WOMAN (1976)
EMANUELLE ON TABOO ISLAND (1976)
EMANUELLE IN AMERICA (1977)
SISTER EMANUELLE (1977)
EMANUELLE AROUND THE WORLD (1977)
EMANUELLE AND THE LAST CANNIBALS (1977)
EMANUELLE AND THE PORNO NIGHTS (1977)
EMANUELLE AND THE WHITE SLAVE TRADE (1978)
EMANUELLE IN THE COUNTRY (1978)
EMANUELLE'S DAUGHTER (1980)
DIVINE EMANUELLE: LOVE CULT (1981)
VIOLENCE IN A WOMEN'S PRISON (1982)
EMANUELLE: QUEEN OF THE DESERT (1982)
EMANUELLE ESCAPES FROM HELL (1983)
EMANUELLE'S PERVERSE OUTBURST (1983) Stock-footage filled

There's probably more than this thanks to various retitlings.








Thursday, March 15, 2018

THUNDER ALLEY (1967)


 Annette Funicello was America's sweetheart and beloved by all, thanks to all those BEACH PARTY movies, when she starred in this. With that in mind I found this a strange role for her since her character steals a guy(fellow 60s popstar Fabian) away from his girlfriend(Diane McBain) and comes off as a pretty big jerk. Thankfully that's not the main plot point here though and it's pretty hard to stay mad at Annette. The main drama concerns Fabian, as stock car driver Tommy Callahan, and his quest to getting back into the racing game after proving he's a nutjob who blacks out during races and murders guys with his car. You would think after sending a fellow driver to his fiery death that might be enough for Tommy to call it quits but I guess with the power of positive thinking and Annette by your side anything is possible. While I didn't care too much about the racing scenes everything moves along briskly enough and you get a raucous party with beer poured over heads, gymnastics and 60s go-go stripping! A goofy fun enough watch that is basically a slightly toned-down version of one of the BEACH PARTY movies on wheels.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

THE WHITE BUFFALO (1977)


 Before the 1980s came along and Bronson got lazy and also typecast into playing just one role over and over again in every movie he was able to stretch his acting ability a bit. This time out he plays the old west gunfighter Wild Bill Hickok. While Hickok was a real person this film takes him on a fictional quest to hunt down the bigass beast of the title. Along the way he runs into "Chief"(Will Sampson) from ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST who's out for revenge against the monster buffalo who stampeded over his kid. The film plays like a monster movie wedged into a western which gives it a unique feel and you almost get a JAWS-vibe here and there due to the similarity in battling a giant mechanical menace. Good example of a decent Hollywood-flick before Hollywood turned into a giant cesspool.

Monday, March 12, 2018

J.D.'S REVENGE (1976)


 Watching this blaxploitation classic in 2018 the one thing that stood out to me the most is when our main character confides in his best friend about how he beat the crap out of his girlfriend and his buddy tells him that she will come back to him because sometimes women just need to be smacked around a bit. Talk about different times! The main focus here is not about abusing women though it's about this law student(Glynn Turman) who gets possessed by a vengeful spirit who seeks revenge on a young-ish Louis Gossett(before he started calling himself Jr. I guess) and his brother. It fits into the blaxploitation, revenge and horror genres which makes for an interesting mix. I've seen some reviews put down the acting in this but I thought it was all done surprisingly well especially the lead role which has our protagonist convincingly turn from a sweet young man to a raging razor-wielding asshole sometimes within the same scene. An interesting entry in 70s black cinema which, to me, the only downfall was the soundtrack being fairly bland.


                                           "A mean double-bill!":