Sunday, December 28, 2014
This stock car driver becomes a rat for the police and goes undercover to stop a gang of bank robbing bikers called The Satan's Angels. The movie starts out wit a cool theme song but then the rest of the music they throw in it is disappointing in comparison. Although there is a pretty cool bassline that provides some groovy background music in places and the band that plays in the bar scene, The Birdwatchers, are pretty decent. The whole movie is kinda disappointing though since this bike gang consist of only four people(there are more bikers on the poster than ever appear in the film) and things go along in a pretty usual way for these types of exploitation flicks with very few surprises. So overall it's a pretty lightweight disposable sort of experience. I did dig that 'Wild Rebels' theme song though!
Do people consider a movie live-action if half the movie is computer-animated? I guess if you consider WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT? live-action then this would qualify also. I can't help but feel while I watch this that I've seen the exact same plot in a bunch of different Japanime back when I used to watch that stuff in the 90's. Back then stuff like this was relegated solely to nerds and now nerds are the majority and apparently run Hollywood. What a silly world we live in. I'm sure there were better Japanese cartoons from the past but since this is a modern movie and I try to put the 90's out of my mind as much as possible I'll stick to comparing it with the few similar modern things I've seen. This was clearly better than THE TRANSFORMERS since I could mostly tell what was happening during the computerized/video-game action sequences and also better than that new GODZILLA movie/cgi-thing since you at least slightly care about the human characters unlike in that one. Of course the main problem like every other modern big Hollywood-ized action-film is that you're watching what appears to be a game but not given any controllers which seems like a strange form of entertainment for me to enjoy. This would be an interesting spectacle to remake with guys in rubber-suits and cool robot costumes or I could just go watch some old ULTRAMAN or MACH-BARON episodes for that kind of grooviness.
Robots fighting monsters was way cooler in 70's Japanese cartoons:
Saturday, December 27, 2014
Abraxas was the name of some ancient god or force who was a combination of all good and evil, or something like that, and having nothing to do with any of that mystical shit it's also the name of this crappy Jesse "The Body" Ventura sci-fi/action flick. The main problem with this is that the action scenes are really badly shot and that's never a good thing when it's your main selling point. That's not the only downfall though since the plot is convoluted and dumb at the same time, the acting is terrible and the whole thing is really dull and hard to get through. Also it's got a shitty TERMINATOR rip-off thing going on with an indestructible alien running around doing a Schwarzenegger impression. James Belushi shows up as a principal but I was never a fan of his anyway and I'm pretty sure this isn't supposed to be a comedy. You would think Ventura would be better in this having been good in PREDATOR and THE RUNNING MAN and having all those years of playing "The Body" in his wrasslin' persona but he doesn't get to wear a feather-boa or any psychedelic outfits in this and that's the way I prefer to remember him.
The one cool thing about this is there's this half-alien kid who makes bullies piss their pants and that's a pretty cool super-power.
I would be pretty pissed if I paid $90 for this, I'm even a little annoyed at the 50 cents I blew on the DVD:
Wednesday, December 24, 2014
OK, so the son of Hercules here is a guy named Argolese and he wrestles a lion, a bear(guy in a bear suit) and slays a dragon who looks more like a regular old dinosaur before ending up in the titular land of darkness which is a place ruled by an evil Queen and a bunch of servants who practice cannibalism. He also gets a stupid sidekick. This is the 2nd one of these swords n' sandals movies I've viewed where elephants are responsible for executing people. Here it's a couple of them that are supposed to rip our hero apart. Now the version I watched of this was an edited-for-television cut, that was cut into 2 parts for some reason, so it's obviously missing some bloodletting scenes which sucks. The original version is known as HERCULES THE INVINCIBLE and it also goes under the title of HERCULES AGAINST THE ELEPHANTS' EMPIRE but whatever you call it this one is strictly by-the-numbers without much of interest going on but it works as a good antidote for insomnia at 3a.m. or so.
Pretty snazzy themesong!:
Wednesday, December 17, 2014
You know you're watching a really crappy kung-fu flick when the most interesting thing is the background music. This one gives us a cheesey Muzak-version of The Beatles' "Obladi Oblada". It also starts out giving us a sorta midget-comedy where our Bruce Lee stand-in, who doesn't look or act like the real Bruce in the slightest, gets a little-person sidekick for a bit. The rest of the movie has to do with some romantic plot that I quickly lost interest in with some shitty fight scenes thrown in from time to time. There is one highlight where a bunch of gals grapple with each other on the beach and we get a brief flash of boobs.
The title is a take-off on the Jackie Chan movie SNAKE IN THE EAGLE'S SHADOW but it has nothing else to do with that film.
Saturday, December 13, 2014
"He's good boss, damn good. Fuckers fast man! I couldn't even touch him!"
I would think this title was meant to capitalize on the success of or confuse people with the comedy THEY CALL ME BRUCE except that movie didn't come out until 1982 so I'm, not sure how that works. Of course actual release dates are often a bit sketchy on these bottom-of-the-barrel kung fu flicks. The main character here is a guy named Jack Lee who looks nothing like Bruce Lee even when he wears the yellow tracksuit. Also the title has lied to me since no one ever calls him Bruce Lee. Besides this the main problem with this film is that there's very little fighting or action in it and a major portion of this is concerned with love triangle drama or maybe it's supposed to be a comedy. Either way it's not much fun. On the positive side sometimes people make Three Stooges noises when they get hit and for a few seconds they play a Muzak version of Jigsaw's song "Sky High" which might be one of the greatest ridiculous 70's pop songs ever! Unfortunately neither of these things make this movie worth a watch.
This Stooges short is mostly famous for having the "Niagara Falls/Slowly I Turn" skit in it where Curly gets smacked around. Abbot & Costello used the same bit in LOST IN A HAREM which came out the same year. Technically though the Stooges scene performing this was shot a year earlier for a film called GOOD LUCK, MR. YATES. It ended up getting cut from that film and inserted here. Since this is an old vaudeville routine that neither one actually originated it's hard to say anyone ripped anyone else off but I have read that Moe Howard was not a fan of Abbott & Costello and it seems odd that both groups had films in the same year with this in it. Classic Stooges' anyway.
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
I've seen the super -gory Italian sequel to this, 1980's PATRICK STILL LIVES, where a lady gets a poker jammed up her vagina, so I figured I should check this one out. This is probably not the optimal way to watch these two movies since this first one is like the complete opposite of it's Eurotrash follow-up. While technically a better-made film I probably woulda liked this way more if it wasn't so damn long. It's a slow movie which can be fine for building tension but slow and almost 2 hours is usually a bad recipe for my personal enjoyment(there's also a 140 minute director's cut that I don't think I need to endure). Also this movie has very little gore and no blood so basically it's just a psychological thriller about a creepy vegetable-guy with telekinetic powers(which were very popular powers to have in the late 70's thanks to CARRIE) falling in love with his nurse and I'm more of a trash-cinema aficionado.
There was a remake of this made in 2013 and if I know anything about remakes made in 2013 it's that none of them are ever worth a shit. It was actually made in Australia though so maybe that's a good sign??
Sunday, December 7, 2014
This is the 7th film in Hammer's Dracula series and while I like the idea of Dracula Vs. swingin' 70's British hippies, this movie, for the most part, is pretty dull. Many Hammer films are slow and talky and often the old-timey setting is pretty unexciting. This time they set it in the modern-day(1970's) so at least you get an acid-rock band and some partying acid-heads. The whole Dracula part though is so predictable and standard that it's really hard to get into the film on any level. It starts with a flash-back which wasn't in the previous movie(SCARS OF DRACULA) and then ends in a pretty similar way. Hammer couldn't have come up with something at least a little bit original here? Pretty disappointing despite the presence of Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, some super red blood and a couple of scantily-clad English birds.
In Denmark this is known under the title VAMPIRE HUNTER HOTPANTS which might be one of the most amazing titles ever!:
In some European countries this didn't come out until 1973:
The 10th film in the Godzilla series and many people consider this to be the very worst of them all. It's hard to argue against that notion. The main problems here are that it's a kiddie movie, starring a little boy as our hero, which seems way more like a Gamera movie than a Toho film and it uses a whole bunch of stock footage from previous Godzilla monster bashes. Also all the scenes that take place on Monster Island are in the imagination of a little boy so in this reality none of these creatures even exist. If this isn't bad enough there's also a sub-plot about some annoying bungling bank robbers and the dubbed version has some of the most comedic-sounding bucktoothed Asian stereotypical sounding voices you might ever hear. The only positive thing I can say about this is when I was a very little kid I appreciated it as being a sort-of greatest hits package of Godzilla fights so it at least has nostalgic value for me but I doubt anyone who wasn't raised watching this movie multiple times would find anything that isn't cringe-worthy in it. Also the opening tune, in the American dub, is kinda cool in a wacky 60's kind of way. AKA MINYA: THE SON OF GODZILLA, GODZILLA, MINYA AND GABARA: ALL MONSTERS ATTACK and ATTACK ALL MONSTERS
The movies this pilfers footage from include GODZILLA VS. THE SEA MONSTER and SON OF GODZILLA
Released in 1971 in the U.S. on an unlikely double-bill with a British Christopher Lee sci-fi thriller:
And then later on re-released on a way more appropriate double-feature:
So is Argoman related to Superargo and what the hell does Argo mean anyway? While Superargo is more of an Italian Batman/Santo mash-up this one is way more James Bond but only if Bond had super-powers, wore a crazy outfit with new-wave/Devo glasses and then temporarily lost his powers after banging hot chicks. I probably prefer Superargo for it's outlandishness but this one's pretty cool also and feels like a not quite as stylish take-off of DANGER: DIABOLIK. There's an evil big clunky robot, goofy masked henchmen and lots of attractive Euro-ladies to ogle. The film does drag a bit in the middle and whenever our hero is in his civilian mode but overall a fun campy super-hero flick. AKA ARGOMAN, ARGOMAN THE FANTASTIC SUPERMAN, THE FANTASTIC ARGOMAN and HOW TO STEAL THE CROWN OF ENGLAND.
Here he is!: