Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Stupidest ending of any Dario Argento film so far has to be the one in this film. There's a person in a rubber Halloween skeleton outfit yelling about being death while an "inferno" engulfs them. Maybe this looked like a cool ending on paper but the way it's filmed it just comes off as the most embarrassingly ridiculous spectacle you will see in a somewhat serious film. There's other nonsensical things that happen including a crazy(or is he possessed?) hot dog salesman who kills a guy for drowning cats and other things that may have seemed cool in the script but come off really bizarre on film. The music, even though not done by Goblin, is cool in its own way. This is a sequel to SUSPIRIA but besides the underwater sequence and some strange colored scenes here and there it doesn't come close to being the amazing trip through witchy wonderland that SUSPIRIA is.
Full tilt gonzo and crazier than a shithouse rat are just the first two thoughts that come to mind when thinking about this absurdly entertaining flick from Japan. I find it amazing that this movie was made back in 1977 and it's just now being discovered by cult movie fans. The audience I saw this with didn't seem to completely get it, which isn't surprising. Out of place happy 70's music, painted backgrounds, strange amateurish f/x that even more strangely all seem to work in the setting of this bizarre world that seems equal parts kiddie t.v. show, part outlandish comic book and part off the wall disturbing ghost story. Highlights include a guy getting turned into a pile of bananas, a decapitated head that bites asses, and a girl eaten by a piano. Truly a one of a kind surreal trip through an Asian wonderland of psychedelia with blood. I would recommend this one for adventurous cinema thrill seekers only.
Who knew that Corey Feldman directed anything? Thankfully this was his one and only directorial effort. He manages to make POLICE ACADEMY seem like a work of genius in comparison. Chocked full of unfunny gags, the only positive thing is that they at least live up to the title by filling the movie with a bunch of large breasted women which is nice on the eyes. Feldman himself, of course, gets a nice shower scene where he gets to rub up against two big boobied girls for a while as well as getting the girl at the end. The movie itself takes place in the town of Amity and they refer to a great white shark that used to trouble the town, so I guess that makes this a retardo-world, alternate universe sequel to JAWS?? Corey Haim also stars, looking even more washed up than Feldman. Todd Bridges, Eliot Gould and Ron Jeremy also shows up for cameos. The kind of movie you could catch on USA's UP ALL NIGHT (and probably not too many other places) back in the 90's if you were an insomniac.
Boobs are great!:
Monday, August 30, 2010
Probably one of the worst things I have seen in a really long time. Totally amateurish piece of shot on video garbage that looks worse than most low rent pornos do. Doesn't work as a campy slasher movie at all. I think they were trying to go for a fake snuff movie ring kinda story except you don't care about any of the actresses that get killed. The best thing I can say is they have a cool title, a midget shows up in one scene, which is always fun, some nice looking artificial breasts are on display and that's about it. So if you like silicone and a few really shitty fleeting gore f/x watch but don't expect much.
And, of course, even the trailer blows:
Professor Leon Theremin was the guy responsible for all those wacked-out sounds you hear in a bunch of 50's sci-fi and horror films that you may know and love like THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL and other such classics. He is also responsible for electronic music in general as the Theremin was one of the first electronic musical instruments invented. It is also the only instrument that's played without even being touched. Weird! This documentary takes a look at the Professor and his journey through life, which includes being kidnapped by the KGB and forced to work for the Soviets during the cold war. Like many documentaries the whole story could be summed up in a much shorter running time. The highlight for me was seeing Beach Boys member Brian Wilson talk about how young people are "the children of god" and other such ramblings. He was just precious.
Two Boris Karloffs for the price of one! Here the horror legend plays twin brothers in a creaky old 1930's piece. It's cool to see Karloff actually given the chance to act as the two brothers do have two distinct personalities, one an evil murderous tyrant and the other a gentleman. The black room itself is the place where the evil brother disposes of the bodies of his enemies. Did every castle have a body disposal system back in the day? I like to think so. The hero of the movie turns out to be a big Scooby-Doo dog. While not as amazing as the monster movies he's most known for it's worth watching if you are into the classic era.
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Probably better known under its BLACK SUNDAY alternate title, this old time Italian horror/witchcraft tale is notable for the amazingly attractive presence of its anime eyed star Miss Barbara Steele. Also notable for having some great shots by horror master director Mario Bava. Besides these things it is a pretty ordinary 60's Italian flick with people being punished for being witches(which includes getting a heavy metal "Mask Of Satan" hammered onto their faces in addition to the more typical burnings at the stake) and then coming back seeking revenge for being executed. Last time I saw this was at the beginning of an all-night horror marathon which, I must say, made for a pretty slow start to the evening. Director Riccardo Freda made a few similar 60's Italian horror flicks around this same time also which are worth checking out if you dig this one.
Also known as THE MASK OF SATAN:
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Interesting, if not overly long, look at the life of someone who lived a pretty crazy existence and did it on his own terms with the help of various substances. Burroughs talks about accidentally killing his wife during a drunken game of "William Tell", being a homosexual and other drug-fueled life stories. Patty Smith, Allen Ginsburg and others pop up too. Check it out if you're an old beatnik or just dig poetic insanity.
Friday, August 27, 2010
Knowing that this was part of a series and having heard a lot of good things about it, this 70's sexy undercover spy chick tale was not as good as I was expecting. It just moves along at such a slow pace and is done so terribly that you never really care about anyone. Title character Ginger uses the word 'jungle bunny' which, depending on your point of view, might make her even less likable. An off screen castration might be the highlight. The other two movies in the series are supposed to be better. Maybe I'll check them out someday.
GINGER 1971 Sexploitation Movie TRAILER Cheri Caffaro
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Thursday, August 26, 2010
Probably the most boring example of a mondo movie that I've ever seen. You get to see some Africans whipped with sticks getting them ready to be good slaves and that's about the most shocking thing on display. It's mostly like watching the news except that the DVD that I saw this on was so washed out and lacking in any colors that it also looked like shit as well as being dull as dirt. It doesn't help that when they use the word 'today' they are referring to 1964 which makes this about as relevant to slavery today as an episode of GREEN ACRES is to farming today. Watch MONDO CANE or MONDO PAZZO instead.
Here's a trailer for MONDO PAZZO a.k.a. MONDO CANE 2:
You get a little bit of everything in this blaxploitation gem. It starts out like a pretty light-hearted comedy, then turns into a drama and finally ends up being a chainsaw wielding, wild and wooly, bloody revenge flick complete with impalements and a hot curling iron shoved up a gay fellows ass. Plus some great 70's funky tunes. One of the best things I've seen in a while. You can see where the makers of BLACK DYNAMITE must have gotten a load of inspiration from this. Star "Mr. Jonathon" may even give guys like Shaft and Dolemite a run for their money in the bad-ass category. Director Greydon Clark made SATAN'S CHEERLEADERS the next year and WITHOUT WARNING a few years after that. Why is there no statue in honor of this man's greatness?
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Hard to believe that Dario Argento used to make movies as visually exciting as this. Everything works in this. You get gory blood-drenched murders done while heavy metal blasts your eardrums!, crazy-ass Hitchcockian birds ripping eyeballs out of heads, needles taped to eyes, an impromptu autopsy and all kinds of bat-shit insanity going on involving an opera house trying to put on a performance of MACBETH while someone with black leather gloves is getting stab-happy. The ideas even for the simplest killing(a shooting through a keyhole) are overflowing with artistic intent. Even if he can't afford to do the awesome shots that he pulls off in this if Dario put at least half as much thought into his newer stuff people would still be cheering him on instead of dreading his next film. AKA TERROR AT THE OPERA
The only reason I even wanted to see this in the first place is because it's a Greek zombie film and I've never seen a Greek zombie film before. Well now I hate Greek zombie films! Everything from the bizarre weirdo techno/noise soundtrack (I put this on one night and couldn't even manage to sleep through it because of the unevenness of the volume) to the silly DEAD ALIVEesque gore scenes are pretty crappy. It's sort of a lobotomized version of 28 DAYS LATER with really shit cgi and piss-poor practical f/x(rubber masks anyone?) and loads of running, running, running. I know there are some cool Italian horror movies filmed in Greece(ANTHROPOPHAGOUS for one) but are there actually any good Greek made gore films?
and there's a sequel which looks just as awful:
Sunday, August 22, 2010
An ultra-silly sexploitation comedy directed by the great Doris Wishman. I'm not sure who directed the sex scenes but they seem a little too close to being hardcore for Doris to have done them. Sammy Petrillo plays his usually annoying self toned down slightly from his heyday of impersonating Jerry Lewis. Manuel the superintendent is the highlight of comedy relief. Like many sexy movies of this time the actual sex scenes, unfortunately, just serve to grind everything to a complete halt and take up the majority of screen time. Not Wishman's best but still work a look for a cheap laugh.
Not as much fun as I WAS A TEENAGE WEREWOLF but a pretty typical 1950's monster flick nonetheless. It could use a little more action as the talky bits are a bit of a drag but like most 50's monster movies they keep the running time down to a little over 1 hour. Could use more teenagers and more Teen Frankenstein rampaging but an O.K. piece of illogically, nonsensical, nostalgia fluff complete with a monster lab and even an alligator body disposal system. They even throw in a color ending for added goofiness.
Here's trailers for both teen epics:
"cleanliness is next to naziness"
Very strange nazisploitation flick made in Switzerland for the German market. The main reason that it seems so strange is because the nazis are seemingly the heroes in this and the Russians are the villians that German girls need to be rescued from. This differs from about 99% of every other movie in this genre. Features a cake decked out in swastikas and a great finale with naked nazi girls running bare-assed naked towards the camera. There's not really much in the way of violence and/or torture usually contained in these types of films, except for some crappy war scenes, it's mostly just worth a watch for the wall-to-wall nudity on display and the weirdness of all the sexual hi-jinks going on.
I can't find the trailer for this anywhere so here's one from SS HELL CAMP instead, which is a way more brutal film made in Italy:
Saturday, August 21, 2010
What can you say about one of the greatest filmmakers of all time? This is supposed to be the first film that Akira Kurosawa had total control of and it's an interesting look at humanity and two fairly opposite characters. One an alcoholic doctor who, besides for his addiction to drinking, lives a pretty moral and upstanding life and the other a gangster who comes down with tuberculosis. It's great to see a young Toshiro Mifune playing the gangster role. The Japanese countryside looks pretty miserable and considering this was made right after World War II I can imagine why that would be. Not Kurosawa's best work, his samurai films are much better, but a good film to see for historical reasons. I also learned from this movie that Japanese chicks in the '40's had some crazy ass eyebrows.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Frank Henenlotter's masterpiece is BASKET CASE but this is an amusingly demented follow up film. You get one the most bizarre monsters of the 80's voiced by old time horror host John Zacherle. The monster named Aylmer looks like a dick and of course there is a blowjob death scene(the most memorable scene in the movie) involving him. Silly, blood, gory & strange(we end up in a weird homo-erotic scene in a bath house for some reason) plus there's even a message(don't do drugs!). Check it out.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
This was a 1960's shockumentary from directors Jacopetti and Prosperi made after their big hit MONDO CANE. Fairly tame by comparison to more recent gross-out stuff like FACES OF DEATH, these early works have a much more artsy style and are actually filmed pretty beautifully for a genre that would morph into the gutter of depravity it became in the 1980's. We see real human executions and tons of animal slayings on display. Surprisingly the animal killings are the ones that linger in my mind most of all and seem the most senseless. Stay away if that kind of thing bothers you but for a view into the inhumanity of the human species towards nature and each other these documents do serve a purpose. There are a few different versions of this floating around. The AFRICA: BLOOD AND GUTS cut is much shorter and contains only the most violent shots, which comes off as pretty pointless and the original Italian language print is longer with some more animal violence and supposedly a more racist commentary.
Definitely a one of a kind feature that could only have been made back in the 70's when porno films were at their peak of insane depravity. You get puppet fucking, puppet bestiality, bad puppet comedy skits, strange puppet blow-jobs, some real nudity and a few actors from the sleazoid classic BLOODSUCKING FREAKS even show up including Ralphus the midget. Director Gerard Damiano and Al Goldstein also pop up in cameos. The closest thing it can be compared to is Peter Jackson's MEET THE FEEBLES but with explicit puppet penetration. I can't imagine the poor idiot that tried to jerk off to any of this in a porn theater back in the day.
Here's a puppet blowing Al Goldstein plus Natasha D'Natalie from BLOODSUCKING FREAKS chasing away skunky cunt, two of the truly greatest moments in cinema history:
Saturday, August 14, 2010
What can you say about this one? The one that started the whole stupid series. Doesn't work as a mystery at all since we never even meet the killer until the very end but it does set the template for a whole load of maniac-slasher-in-the-woods movies to follow. This one works better than any of the sequels(and certainly better than the ass-backwards remake) in at least keeping one foot in reality. Betsy Palmer does an awesome job as a kooky nutty lady and Jason doesn't even exist outside of a dream sequence. Kevin Bacon's greatest role? Could be.
An over long meditation on the positives and negatives of living a life of selfless virtue and purity versus a materialistic life of corruption and crime played out by two sisters of opposite temperament. Klaus Kinski is kind of wasted since we never even get to hear his lovely German voice. Jack Palance does some bizarre line readings reminiscent of William Shatner on some type of strong medication. I think the final message is supposed to support the idea of being forthright and honest but if not for the greedy selfishness displayed by the more evil sister I don't see how innocence would be rewarded in any way. It is also possible that I misinterpreted the message. Overall an O. K. Jess Franco film but I think that a shorter version might have conveyed the message in a better fashion.
FRIDAY THE 13th PART 4:THE FINAL CHAPTER would have probably been a great way to end the adventures of Jason Voorhees on a fairly high note. So this sequel seems like a bad idea right from the start. Back when I was a teen I used to hate this one for the fake Jason and the absurdly bad acting and the way they just kind of make a mockery of anything that was even remotely serious about the first 4 films in this series. Now I find the dipshit insane performances, the nonsensical plot and the idea that someone can just pretend to be Jason and then somehow obtain his superhuman powers to be the selling points. Add in some embarrassingly badly portrayed rednecks and 1950's greaser stereotype characters and how can you go wrong? Also when you compare it to the shitty sequels that followed in this franchise and the retard-o remake this one looks fantastic. Stick a flare in your mouth and enjoy the ride.
Monday, August 9, 2010
Jean Rollin has made some of the most boring movies ever (ZOMBIE LAKE anyone?), so it's not very surprising that what you get here is another one of the most boring, slowest moving zombie movies ever made. I expect zombies to be slow but why does even the heroine wanders around so friggin' slowly? I use the term "zombies' very loosely as well, since they're more like the crazy nutsos from George Romero's THE CRAZIES in all actuality. There are 3 good gore scenes on display here but besides that there's nothing but very slow-paced boredom to entice the viewer. You get a decapitation, a crucifixion and a pitchforking which I guess is better than nothing but only slightly.
Don't drink the wine!: