Saturday, August 31, 2013
The idea to mix mental illness with graphic sex scenes is something that seems completely absurd but it was done a few times in the 70's. The closest thing to this I can think of is something like THE DEFIANCE OF GOOD. I guess with the popularity of stuff like ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST and those movies about multiple-personality disorders like SYBIL(which this movie has a lot in common with) whack-job insane people were on folk's minds at the time. This movie starts out with some Harry Reems frolicking about and from there it takes a pretty dark turn as we end up in a mental hospital with nutty Susan who enjoys staring at the walls and being mute. How they jam anything remotely sexy into this story is very strange and if you took out the sex bits it would just be a psychological-drama situation. Susan does have a way more sexually out-going personality named Sondra who hits on everyone which leads to some lesbianism. There's also a rape scene towards the end with Jamie Gillis playing rapist #1, a role he's very good in. In fact all the acting here is really good which sells the simple plot. Apparently this was the first X-rated film to be made with card-carrying SAG members and it shows. There's also a neat twist ending that makes the movie better.
The version I viewed of this is a soft-core cut which seems like a really stupid version to release on DVD(thanks After Hours Cinema) but I'm not sure if it would make all that much difference if there were graphic penetrations since it's all kinda unnecessary and really just slows the narration down anyway.
This movie was also featured on a 42nd Street marquee in TAXI DRIVER so if it's good enough for Travis it's good enough for me.
The music in this will most likely not give you very sexy thoughts unless you're really into sappy ballads:
Friday, August 30, 2013
This gang of evil white men( one of which looks like Joe Walsh and another one, Robert Tessier from HARD TIMES, is Mr. Clean, but with hair) massacre a village of American-Indians in their hunt for some gold. Then they end up on the bad end of an angry Injun looking for revenge. This is a pretty boring film that really drags things out as much as possible. It's an American western, which to me is always worse than the Italian ones made at this time with the exception of Sam Peckinpah's films, and they sorta emulate the Euro-western aesthetic by throwing in some pretty violent scenes including a guy getting paralyzed by an arrow in the back and a snake in a bag over a guy's head. For a better example of a 70's redskin-revenge flick check out the great JOHNNY FIRECLOUD.
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Lee Van Cleef plays two roles in this spaghetti-western(at least it looks like a spaghetti-western even though it was actually made in Israel) from later in the cycle. He plays a priest who ends up getting gunned down by a gang of outlaws led by Jack Palance and then he also plays the twin brother who gets some revenge. Sybil Danning and Leif Garrett(who was also in KID VENGEANCE with Van Cleef) also appear in this. This is a pretty standard western though it seems filmed pretty poorly in spots with some stuff just not making a whole bunch of sense. Kind of disappointing considering the cast. Try one of the 10 million other spaghetti's out there instead. AKA A BULLET FROM GOD
Sunday, August 25, 2013
There's this bully character named Dugan(played by Steve Oliver who was also the lead baddie in MOTOR PSYCHO) in the movie THE VAN, which was also made by Crown International Pictures, and he returns here a year later in this, so I guess that makes this a sorta sequel to THE VAN. He seems more like he stepped out of the 1950's though since he now wears a leather-jacket and rides a motorcycle( I guess it was the Fonzie influence at the time). Unfortunately Dugan isn't the main character in this because most of the other folks are your standard teens looking to get laid and they're not all that interesting. In fact the whole movie is just a plot-less bunch of scenes of summer-fun/beach-hijinks that don't really go anywhere but there are worse things you could watch. There are lots of boobs mostly thanks to a dog who's trained to snatch bathing-suit tops, a super-fake looking JAWS-rip-off scene to end it all and Dugan finally gets the girl, giving hope to bullying muscle-head creeps everywhere.
This is basically Russ Meyer's version of a biker film made before there really were any biker films. It's also a rape-revenge tale and there's a crazy gun-wielding veteran running amuck and, of course, there's boobs. It's sorta the flipside of Meyer's FASTER PUSSYCAT! KILL! KILL! with the gang of rape-happy malcontents being male this time out. This is one of my favorite of Meyer's films and unlike most of his stuff it's mostly played pretty straight except for this one hilariously over-the-top bit where star Alex Rocco screams at the top of his lungs about sucking out the venom from his snake-bite. One of the other stars of this, the super-hot Haji, recently passed away so if you're looking for some quality Haji action, as well as some toplessness (which is something you don't even get in PUSSYCAT) then this is the movie for you.
Sort-of sequel to the great DEADLY WEAPONS also starring giant-boobed Chesty Morgan and also directed by bad-movie specialist Doris Wishman. This might be Wishman's greatest film just because it actually seems halfway competently directed as opposed to most of her stuff. Also there's a lot of silly action scenes so it moves along pretty quickly before you start to get bored by the repetition of it all. Wishman does pad things out with some stock footage of zoo animals and Florida nature but for the most part it works as well as you would expect. Just don't expect to ever get even slightly excited about seeing our star get naked as that might be one of the most frightening displays you may ever peep.
The plot is kind of a James Bond rip-off one about a secret agent who has a camera implanted in to one of her massive milk-jugs. She's like the bionic man with tits. She also uses her cans to knock guys out which is something to see. There's a bunch of dumb assassinations including exploding lipstick and Doris' version of the PSYCHO shower-scene. The worst of these has got to be a guy killed by having ice-cubes stuck in his mouth-hole.
Luckily I was able to catch this on the big screen from an actual film-print which was just delightful.
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
It can't be that hard to make a halfway decent women-in-prison movie. I mean all you need is boobs, some lesbianism and a few bloody conflicts. It's a pretty simple formula and while there are all those elements here this female-prisoner flick is probably the worst one I've seen yet. It's amazing that's there's actual well-know actors(Anne Heche & Tome Towles) in this because the acting level, and pretty much everything else, is at the level of a shot-on-video piece of garbage. They set this thing in the 50's for no apparent reason except, I guess, that the original GIRLS IN PRISON was made back in the 50's. You see this was a made-for-TV film aired on Showtime around the time when they were remaking a bunch of the old AIP exploitation films, very badly, so I guess the standards weren't very high. Amazingly Samuel Fuller is credited as a writer on this but he musta been seriously senile if he wrote any of the lines or plot in this. Also amazingly the director here, John McNaughton, is the same guy who made the great HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER. What a waste! On the plus side you do get to see Anne Heche's boobs but you can also see those in the equally shitty PSYCHO remake. Go watch the original 50's GIRLS IN PRISON instead of this!
Watching this clip saves a bunch of time:
Monday, August 19, 2013
What you get here is an 80's teen sex comedy which is a lot like a 70's teen sex comedy but even dumber. According to this film marijuana fixes all problems and can save the world. I'm not too sure about that reality since anytime I've smoked it all I felt was sleepy and stupid but it sure seems a lot more fun in the movie. In addition to gratuitous pot smoking you get tons of naked flesh, bad jokes, a gay fleet of coast guards, idiotic racial stereotypes and even a stupid kung-fu scene thrown in for no reason. This whole film is basically one big party scene with a very slim storyline about a prudish gal who just needs to get drunk and high in order to lighten up a little bit. I guess there are worse messages they coulda went with. The cast is mostly made up of no one recognizable except this one blonde chick(Tessa Richarde) that was in THE LAST AMERICAN VIRGIN and this other lady(Mary Jo Catlett) who plays that nosy neighbor in SERIAL MOM. Adam Roarke is in this also and I know he was in a few biker films from the 70's but he looks very different here. This is definitely a time-capsule from a land before ironic and depressed humans were the majority. I'm sure this was shown a bunch on USA's UP ALL NIGHT and other late-night cable channel's back in the day. Check it out for some stupid laughs.
Sunday, August 18, 2013
This here is a French art-house flick which seems to be a commentary on the dangers of society and some deeper issues as well that I would pontificate on more if I was smart enough to decipher all the bizarre imagery on display. Luckily I'm not that smart so I'll just say that this is a very strange almost Jodorowsky-like film. EL TOPO is probably the closest of his movies that you could compare this to with the desert being a main setting in many scenes. There's a whole gigantic laundry list of insane things that you will see here including footage of animal experiments, a penis used as a candle, a guy eating sand, a tranny, a giant fake spider, nude child execution, cannibalism, poop, urine used as a healing balm and a whole bunch of other unsettling elements. There's also a homosexual theme which was probably pretty controversial at the time this was originally released. The story itself is about a guy who may have killed his mother and is on the run from the police but I don't think the plot itself is all that important since the director seems to be more preoccupied with the visual experience.
There's also a great interview on the DVD of this, put out by Cult Epics, with director Arrabal in which you get the feeling he might be a complete lunatic. This definitely made me want to check out more of his crazy stuff.
What you get here is a Spanish art flick with Nazis and little boys getting killed. Not a very happy film and the closest thing I can compare it to is something like SALO except here they use actual little kids as the victims.
The story concerns a former Nazi doctor/child murderer/child molester who attempts suicide and winds up being kept alive in an iron-lung. Then a young fellow shows up who wants to be the old Nazi's nurse and maybe follow in his pervy footsteps. There are some horror-film elements and it's all pretty downbeat but worth a watch if you can handle something pretty depressing that explores the ugliness of man and the consequences of one's actions. There's also a very striking ending image which sums up the theme of the cycle of violence and depravity running throughout the film.
There was a sorta similar film from 1998 called APT PUPIL which was based on a Stephen King book but I never bothered watching it since it just looked like another big Hollywood waste of time. I'm also sure there are no 10-year-old boys getting their throats cut in that one.
Saturday, August 17, 2013
I saw this as part of a Rifftrax show a couple of nights ago and it was a good time. Not so much for the movie itself though, mostly just for the making-fun-of-the-movie stuff.
If this film had been made back in the 50's it might have been pretty cool, unfortunately this was made in 1997 and by that time the ability to even make a stupid aliens vs. humans movie was pretty much lost to the sands of time. The main problem, of course, is that this movie is one of the stupidest things ever made. In addition to this the acting is grating and generally terrible, the action scenes are repetitive and illogical, the story is just ALIENS with spider-aliens instead of the H.R. Giger creatures and the message is an obvious anti-fascism one. Given all this though there were way worse things made in this sorry excuse for a decade so comparably this would probably only rate somewhere around the middle of the garbage heap of shitty films from that era. I also understand that director Paul Verhoeven was attempting to make a satire of American society and as he usually does he takes the sledgehammer approach to do so. Also comparing this to other things in his filmography this wouldn't even be the stupidest thing he's done. So I guess overall I would say this is watchable, at least for the gory bits of people getting torn apart and brains getting sucked out of heads, but this should rightfully be mocked and ridiculed and partially blamed for all of the awful action/sci-fi movies that came out after it.
This was based on a Robert Heinlein book but from what I've read they changed quite a few things to make the movie extra dumb.
There have been 3 sequels to this made so far but I'm sure I can find more exciting things to watch.
Monday, August 12, 2013
Dan Curtis, who did that 60's DARK SHADOWS show and made a bunch of TV stuff, here directs a big haunted house feature. It's probably the best cast ever in a ghost movie with Karen Black and Oliver Reed as the couple who along with their aunt, played by Bette Davis, are slowly pulled into madness. The great Burgess Meredith also appears in a smaller role so everything is done really well. I do have a natural predilection to dislike ghostly movies since they never make much sense but if you're into that sort of thing this is a pretty good entry in the genre and it comes complete with a nice downbeat 70's ending. There's also a few elements, as the family begins to unwind, that sorta reminded me of THE SHINING which is a good thing.
Sunday, August 11, 2013
This film starts out with a very Charles Manson-esque hippie cult-leader character named Billy Joe who doesn't mind dabbling in a little murder in order to get his Jesus-y religious message across. He's basically Manson with a mid-west accent and some flowing white robes.The beginning portion of this is pretty cool and ends up with a guy getting nailed to a big wooden cross. From there it switches over to a little courtroom drama and finally ends up being a typical home-invasion story. The majority of this movie is way too goofy to get across any kind of message they may have been trying to convey and this takes away whatever sense of drama was trying to be built. It also has a very TV-movie-of-the-week kind of a vibe going on, no doubt due to it's PG-rating, that adds to the silliness quotient. There's also a twist-ending that doesn't really make much sense when you think about it too hard. Worth watching, the first quarter at least, for Manson aficionados but I'm not sure anyone else would dig it too much.
In the Spanish version apparently the Devil does all the screaming:
Way before "torture-porn" became a trendy thing most horror films didn't have graphic torture scenes on display in them but over in Italy they didn't care about that and made this anyway. Mickey Hargitay, who was Hercules and Jayne Mansfield's husband, here plays a crazy psycho fellow who oils himself up, dresses like a pro-wrestler/superhero in bright red tights and a matching hood and has the wrestler-like name of The Crimson Executioner. He gets himself sentenced to death in the most heavy-metal of ways by being placed in the iron-maiden and then returns many years later seeking vengeance and blood. Luckily a whole gang of beautiful scantily-dressed women happen along to his castle looking for a creepy place to have a creepy photo-shoot. This is obviously a pretty stupid movie with the most minimal of plot but it's also a really fun trip, mostly due to Hargitay's over-the-top acting and the crazy torture devices that get put to good use. There's also an amazingly ridiculous giant spider that shows up at one point. Check it out unless you suck as a human in which case go immediately to your nearest multiplex for your cinematic lobotomies.
Played on a double-bill with fellow Italian shocker TERROR CREATURES FROM THE GRAVE:
Also inspired this rockin' tune from one of New Jersey's greatest punk bands:
Saturday, August 10, 2013
The East Side Kids, who later went on to be known as The Bowery Boys, starred in a whole bunch of stupid Three Stooges-esque films that they used to continuously show at late-night/early morning hours back in the old days before TV sucked. Along with Charlie Chan, Tarzan and similar low-budget black & white oldies these films were most likely only viewed by 80 year-old invalids and myself. This one is the 7th in the series and has the boys meet Bela Lugosi in an old dark house full of skeletons and a midget(Angelo Rossitto). This one is pretty dull overall and I think I'm more of a fan of the Bowery Boys-era stuff when they just went all out with the slapstick but this is only about 65 minutes long so that's a plus. Lugosi would meet the kids once again in GHOSTS ON THE LOOSE in 1943.
This was filmed back in 1958 as MONSTROSITY and released 5 years later on the bottom of a double-bill. It was given THE ATOMIC BRAIN title for TV showings. It's your basic creaky old 50's brain-transplant/FRANKENSTEIN-rip-off kind of film. Dr. Frank, as he's conveniently named here, does a bunch of transplants resulting in various "monstrosities" including an animal-man, a lady with a cat's brain who scratches out another ladies eyeballs, a zombie lady and a cat with an old ladies brain. The main plot is about greedy folks trying to get their hands on an old ladies fortune. There's lots of voice-over narration instead of actually having the characters let us now what is going on, which is usually the sign of not-so-great film making, but at least this guy sounds creepy. While this is a mostly forgettable film I couldn't help but think while watching how there was probably more thought put into this cheap-o production than anything made in Hollywood in the last 30 years.
Wednesday, August 7, 2013
This starts out as an Italian mobster/crime flick then turns into a women-in-prison thing and then it kinda jumps back and forth between the two throughout the rest of the run-time. I can't say I ever got totally into the story-line that was going on but I thought it was pretty cool how they at least tried to do something different here by blending two sub-genres together. You get the expected female nudity, cat-fights, lesbianism and shower scenes in the prison bits and on the mafia side of things you get some car chases and a guy burned alive among the killing and mayhem. Not the best or worst and fairly generic overall but maybe worth checking out if you've seen everything else and need more 70's sleaze in your life. Personally I much prefer Jess Franco's similarly titled WOMEN IN CELL BLOCK 9.
This was released in a cut version titled LOVE AND DEATH IN A WOMEN'S PRISON.
Available on a steamy triple-feature DVD set along with ESCAPE FROM HELL and THE HOT BOX:
Sunday, August 4, 2013
This is a weird little obscure Greek flick about a murdering rape-happy fellow who looks a little like a sweaty Oliver Reed. The plot takes some strange twists as our protagonist teams up with a guy looking to off his wife so he can get his hands on her cash. There's lots of backstabbing and some old Greek dancing thrown in. Going into this I thought I would be getting a more explicit giallo or horror type film but things unfortunately play out in a more straight-forward thriller fashion despite the more lurid components involved. The poster screams "you will never see this on TV" but ironically I think if you just cut the couple of boob shots out I could imagine this would probably play very much like a TV-movie. Then again the version I watched of this may have been cut since it ends very abruptly.
This was also released under the way cooler title of THE RAPE KILLER and the way more literal title of HE MURDERED HIS WIFE.
Saturday, August 3, 2013
This starts out like some sort of jungle woman/Tarzan adventure then slowly turns into a full-on Indonesian cannibal movie. You get decapitations, kung fu vs. cannibals and people getting ripped apart and eaten. Amazing that this was filmed in 1988 since it looks like something from 1977 at the latest. The only thing that hints at this being in the 80's is the soundtrack which is comprised of horrendous repetitive synth music . The natives make strange child-like/retard noises to show how primitive they are, they use magical powers(the force?) to throw rocks, shoot energy beams and turn people into jelly and all the men act like complete morons. I would say there's some anti-male bias in this but most of the female characters aren't exactly rocket-scientists either. The female tribe, or Jungle Virgin Force as the title calls them, are the only effect group in this entire film. They eventually figure out how to use voodoo dolls to kill their enemies(the evil male cannibal tribe). Lots of insanity that doesn't make much sense and will only be appreciated by lovers of the craziest of Asian cinema.
Thursday, August 1, 2013
Well there's no hitchhiking or school in this but at least there are girls. These two gals come upon an abandoned house so naturally they decide to get down to some lesbian antics and have a sleepover. Then they run into some mobsters who they have sex with. From here you get the feeling that this might turn into a roughie of some sort but it never really does, there is some fairly mild torture(ie; whipping and nipple pinching) but it just sorta gets bogged down in a silly story about missing jewels. There is a gunfight at one point but since this was directed by Eurotrash cult fav Jean Rollin, who doesn't shoot action scenes very well, it comes off very oddly staged and not very action-packed. Maybe this woulda been better if there were a couple of vampires or zombies thrown in like some of Rollin's better films but as it is it's pretty dumb. Also every character does stupid brainless things so it's hard to relate to any of them luckily it's a short film and there's lots of naked French gals. AKA HIGH SCHOOL HITCH HIKERS