Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Hating Eli Roth is a popular past-time amongst hip horror fans. I think this might have more to do with maybe not liking him as a person because he's a geeky horror fan(self-loathing anyone?) or jealousy of his relationship with Quentin Tarantino or the fact that these HOSTEL movies(along with the SAW franchise) ushered in that whole era of "torture-porn" that all the kiddies love. And while I don't know the guy personally and I'm certainly no big fan of that particular genre of films I can't say I've ever honestly hated any of his movies that I've seen. This one I saw when it first came out theatrically and was entertained enough. Even if it goes off into the ridiculous territory towards the end of the film they at least use practical effects and don't flinch on the gory stuff. Watching it again, even though it's overshadowed by all the crap that came out after it, I still can't find anything to hate here and still find it a decent enough watch. I guess I can't sit at the cool kids table now.
One of my favorite directors Takashi Miike shows up here and there's a little homage to the Japanese horror flick SUICIDE CLUB.
HOSTEL II is basically the same movie but with females replacing the annoying guys. It is also not as deplorable as popular opinion would lead you to believe. Especially when compared to all the horrible remakes and other worthless ghost-movie/possession film garbage that was spewed out in this decade. HOSTEL III, which Roth didn't direct, is set in Vegas and is mostly crap and there's a fake trailer for a HOSTEL IV online but I don't think an actual movie exists.
Tuesday, April 29, 2014
When you hear this title, and that the movie is from 1975, you might think this was some kinda LSD flick but they're just referring to an actual field trip with a busload of female students and not even one joint is smoked. Their teacher here looks to be around the same age as the gals which is convenient when they run into a couple of rapist/killer bikers and get their clothes ripped off. Basically I think of this film as a kinder/gentler version of LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT. There is murder and rape going on but, for the most part, it's not very explicitly shown, at least not in the versions I've seen going around on the various Crown International box sets. One of the bikers looks like Joe Walsh and the other, our main psycho, Mr. Zalman King, even kinda resembles David Hess with his curly hair, but he's kinda like a lackadaisical Krug who takes a lot of naps in between his crazy hijinks. King would go on to be a director & producer of real Hollywood-type movies after appearing in this drive-in-type stuff. AKA DEADLY FIELDTRIP
Monday, April 28, 2014
Well this is one of the worst things I've seen in a while. If the idea of mixing zombies, gore and porn together sounds good to you maybe you'll like this but I kinda doubt it would appeal to much of anyone. It's a plot-less bunch of sex scenes strung together where people either fuck or get fucked by zombies. Of course the cheap-ass zombie make-up gets rubbed off during the various sex acts so it ends up just looking like people covered in dirt having dirty sex. There's one memorable bloody scene where a guy gets his cock bitten off which I think is what they blew the whole budget one because it looks halfway decent. Everything else about this is pretty awful and forgettable though. From the fake "aging" of the video to make it look like a film to the long dull screwing to the shitty death metal that randomly plays in the background. Go watch some horror porn from the 70's when they knew how to do that kind of thing.
Sunday, April 27, 2014
Most kung fu movies are pretty simple. This Shaw Brothers one here might have the most complicated plot of any martial arts movie I've ever seen. You see there's this guy called The Bat, or Mr. Bat to his friends, who lives on Bat Island and grants wishes to martial arts masters. Sort-of like an evil hooded Santa. Why exactly he's referred to as The Bat I'm not sure since he's just a kung fu guy in a white hood & cape ensemble. Then there's the main plot which is basically about solving the mystery of who killed a bunch of chopsockey masters and also about getting some cure for this gal with a fatal illness. This might have been a bit easier to follow if there wasn't 1001 characters who are introduced and then killed-off in record time. Luckily there's plenty of action and crazy set-pieces to keep your mind occupied. There's also a Carp Island but unfortunately no Mr. Carp to be seen. AKA BAT ISLAND ADVENTURES
This is a sequel to 1977's CLANS OF INTRIGUE and maybe if you saw that one this might make more sense. For added confusion that film also goes by the title LEGEND OF THE BAT.
Saturday, April 26, 2014
Some guy named Jeff Cameron, who was also a stuntman, plays Django here and as with pretty much all of these Django rip-off movies this one has nothing to do with the original character. Here he's just a bounty hunter looking to collect the price on some Mexican banditos but at least he is named Django which makes it more authentic than some of these so-called DJANGO movies. The plot moves along quick enough and they throw in some light-hearted almost comedic bits which seem a bit out of place in a movie like this but might give you a chuckle. There's also a Mexican barmaid who was pretty hot so I guess that's at least something to look at. I guess this might be enjoyable to hardcore spaghetti-western fans but anyone else should just stick with the original Franco Nero classic for more exciting action. AKA A PISTOL FOR DJANGO and EVEN DJANGO HAS HIS PRICE
Friday, April 25, 2014
This might have more sentimental/nostalgic value to me than actually being a great movie or anything but I think it's still a goofy entertaining watch. Plus you get a bunch of 60's/70's stars including Eddie Albert, Tom Skerritt, William Shatner and the great Ernest Borgnine looking like a goat/ram-man and playing the eternal leader of a group of desert-dwelling Satanists. I musta blinked a couple of times the last time I watched this because I completely missed John Travolta but I know he's in there somewhere(this was his first film) and Anton Lavey who, of course, plays a Satanic priest. I did watch it on an ancient VHS tape with an extremely full screen print with constant audio noise. Perhaps a DVD-upgrade is in order but this did serve to remind me of how it looked when viewed on some late night showing back in the late 70's/early 80's. Another cool thing about this film is that it uses a Hieronymus Bosch painting (that I also have hanging on my wall) in an effectively creepy way. Also there's a crazy melty finale which kinda made me think of the movie STREET TRASH that came out a decade later. So if you dig the Satanic 70's this one might be worth a look.
Saturday, April 19, 2014
If you took HOSTEL and mixed it with FIGHT CLUB and maybe added a pinch of MARTYRS this might be the end result. Zoe Bell, who's best known for her Tarantino connection, is our main gal here who is kidnapped, stuck in a what's basically a women's prison/dungeon and forced to fight her fellow female inmates to the death with the threat of her daughter being murdered if she doesn't comply. This is all done for the entertainment of some weirdo geek couple who I'm assuming is very rich and has ton of free-time on their hands. What I liked about this movie is the fact that it doesn't flinch on the extreme violence and is pretty bleak throughout it's run-time. Unfortunately you never really learn all that much about most of the characters to care all that much about any of them beyond the most basic things(one gal is the sadistic "bad-gal", one gal is the "innocent-gal", one gal is the tough "black-chick" etc.) It's also a pretty slim plot to hang a full length movie on and gets a little repetitious with the non-stop bloody gal-on-gal face-smashing, bone-breaking annihilation. But if you're into that kinda thing and wanna see an action movie that teeters way over into the bloody horror genre or maybe if you just hate women in general and want to see them all beat each other to a bloody pulp I guess this would work equally good for either of those purposes.
I saw this in a local theater last night with an intro by Miss Bell and felt it was worth a viewing even with it's clunky narrative and highly improbable ending.
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Back in the 80's I was too busy watching Hong Kong action movies to give any of these American straight-to-video movies a chance and looking at this one now I can see why. First of all this title alone is about as dull as you can get without just calling your movie "ACTION". Secondly, Gary Daniels, while a good enough martial artist, is a pretty bland and forgettable hero. I know these action movies stars were a dime-a-dozen at this time but why they picked this particular fellow I'm not very sure except that he looks fit enough. He's basically an even more run-of-the-mill version of Michael "AMERICAN NINJA" Dudikoff with an English accent but apparently he was a good kick-boxer in real life so that works. On the positive side this movie is wall-to-wall action and it looks like they spent a bundle on the bunch of cars that they're constantly wrecking throughout this(which makes me think this possibly might have had some kinda theatrical run?). Also they kill kids here so that's something different. Ultimately if you're just looking for explosions and crazy car chases this will probably work well enough for you. I think I'd rather watch anything from Asia from this time period instead but that's probably cuz I'm more of a kung fu fan than an explodey-action guy.
As crappy a title as RECOIL is there's a few other RECOIL's out there. One is from 2011 and stars "Stone Cold" Steve Austin and Danny Trejo, there's one about a killer mutant snake from 2009 starring Luke Perry and there's one from the 50's about gangsters amongst others. Who knew such a shit title could be so popular?
Friday, April 11, 2014
Mark Forest plays the title role of Goliath here(in the original Italian version he's just Hercules and why they felt the need to change that I'm not sure) and he gets to battle a variety of creatures including a big fire-breathing, three-headed dog, a fucked-up-looking Man-Bat monster, a bear(or at least a guy in a shit-ass bear costume), and naturally the titular dragon(who's sometimes a stop-motion character and sometimes looks like a big rubber puppet-head). The scene that kinda blows my mind here though is the one where we get an elephant whose job is to execute people by stomping on their heads like he's making wine or something. This might be the most bad-ass role an elephant has ever played. He also gets to wrestle our muscular hero of course. Just to round things out a heroic midget and an evil half-man/half-horse centaur guy show up. So while this is pretty typical of the swords and sandals genre in many ways they at least pack enough off-beat stuff in it to make for a good bizarre 3a.m. viewing. AKA VENGEANCE OF HERCULES and HERCULES' REVENGE
Thursday, April 10, 2014
New movies suck! New shot-on-video zombie movies really suck! Strange as it may seem this movie actually ended up playing at a local theater for a few days. How that happened I have no idea. A friend of mine dragged me to this and, not surprisingly, we were the only two people in the theater. It occurred to me while watching this that pro wrestlers should theoretically be better actors. I mean they spend their whole lives playing the part of a "good guy" or "bad guy" but I suppose that's mostly improv because, judging by this movie, when it comes to reading already written lines they're not so good at it. There's not really much good to say about this. The main wrestlers(Roddy Piper & Shane Douglas) are past their prime, "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan, in particular, looks like he might require a walker to get around. There's way too much horrible nu-metal music playing through almost every scene! Whoever this shitty band is that did this soundtrack I now feel like I've heard their entire discography and it hurt me. The gore is really badly done. They do use practical effects as far as I could tell but they're just really awful ones and the whole thing comes off as a super amateurish home video that really has no business playing anywhere someone would have to pay for it. I wonder if they could have possibly sold more than 2 tickets?
For a less gory but far better-made wrestler battling zombies flick go watch SANTO VS. THE ZOMBIES.
Thursday, April 3, 2014
There's a scene in the early part of this movie where Joey Silvera(billed here as Joseph Nasi) gets head from what we are led to believe is a guy wearing a ski-mask. It turns out to be a bit of trickery going on but that's not something you would see presented in very many straight porn flicks. Besides this unique touch we get a few gang-rapes set up by Mr. Silvera. The assailants do use knives to threaten their victims but nothing all that super violent happens except for women getting taken against their will as bras and panties are sliced. A few interesting touches like this, including a cop looking to figure out what the hell is going on, make this one at least a slightly more memorable watch than many of your more basic pornos.
The Japanese don't fool around, they get the raping right on the poster!:
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
I was a little disappointed in this one. Mostly because I was expecting more of a horror/kung-fu kind of a situation and this one is more of your straight ahead classic Shaw Brothers martial arts with warring clans kind of deal. There technically is a witch here but she doesn't really do anything very witchy and just serves as your standard lead baddie of a group of wily ninjas. There is a little bit of female nudity thrown in and also some blood, including a decapitation, which is exciting but overall I don't feel that this one is near the top of the heap when it comes to old-school Shaw flicks. Still even an average Shaw flick can be an entertaining viewing.
There's apparently also a 1970 Taiwanese kung fu flick with this same title but from what I've seen of that it's not much of a horror film either.
Faces get bloody!: