Sunday, March 27, 2016
"They're dykes! Women! Man-haters!"
So what I learned from this 60s roughie is if you do not bang your wife there is a good chance she will run off with a female biker gang and become a lesbian. Of course the more blatant message here is that even the most dyke-est of dykes just needs some good loving from a man to set her on the road to heterosexual bliss and away from a life of the "unnatural". This totally un-p.c. thought-process is probably the aspect of the movie that I love the most. I imagine if a movie was made today with an even slightly similar idea in it everyone involved would have urine thrown at them by bands of militant "feminists" offended by any thought that does not go along with their view of society. Besides these modern-day offensive ideas the movie has just a silly plot about blackmail and a bunch of scenes of people,mostly ladies, rolling around with each other half-naked while smooth jazz plays. There's also some naked motorcycle driving at a beer picnic if that's your fetish. A real retro treat to piss off your lesbian friends with.
Friday, March 25, 2016
This has to be the most stylish women-in-prison flick that I've ever seen. You get wacky upside down camera shots, super use of colors and some great fashions for something that mostly takes place insid a prison. The film successfully straddles the line between being a downbeat sleazy jailhouse movie(complete with mandatory shower scene and sadistic warden) and an absurd ultra-violent cartoon and this is not an easy thing to do. You get a tale of female vengeance involving tons of cat-fights, torture by miso soup, plenty of nekkid Asian ladies, bondage, kung-fu, knife-fu and gun-fu and as a bonus a prison guard who looks like Tony Clifton that never takes off his sunglasses. One standout scene features female-on-male rape(sure to please any "feminists" brave enough to watch this). There's also some of your more traditional gang rape and even some symbolism involving the Japanese flag thrown in which would probably mean more to me if I was either Japanese or smart. The one thing that does get to me after watching this a couple of times is how long it takes for our heroine, Meiko Kaji(who gets to don her big floppy hat similar to the one in STRAY CAT ROCK: SEX HUNTER), to get any payback for all the abuse she takes at the hands of pretty much everyone. I mean realistically she shoulda been dead before she even gets a chance to get her vengeance but luckily the absurdity of the violence level is matched by the absurdity of her mutant-like healing powers.
There were three sequels to this which I have yet to see but if they're half as good as this one I can't wait to check them out.
Tuesday, March 22, 2016
I'm a pretty big fan of these ridiculous 70s "documentaries". I don't actually think any of them have one bit of actual science or information in them but they are completely riveting to me none the less. This one kicked off all those funky ones to follow for the next decade including the most well known example of this genre- IN SEARCH OF... with Leonard Nimoy. While this one is not nearly as absurd as something like MYSTERIES OF THE GODS with William Shatner it does have a groovy/spooky soundtrack and enough wacky claims about ancient alien encounters to make it a fun watch if you can't sleep at 3am. It does get a bit tedious by the end which also makes this a good movie to fall asleep to. I can't imagine the type of person that would take any of these docs seriously but I guess there's all kinds of insanity out there. Perhaps the insanity of it all is the reason I love these movies. I mean not once does the narration ever give any other explanation to anything presented except that "aliens musta done it". I'm pretty sure if I did even a little research into this movie I would find out that everything in this has been debunked by now by why ruin the joy of viewing some crackpot theories?
Sunday, March 20, 2016
Super stylish giallo starring the very sexy Edwige Fenech as a woman who's a bit nutty but she has good reason to be as she's being stalked by a maniac who wears black gloves and slices up gals with a straight razor. She's also involved in a love triangle(rectangle?) and gets into some kinky sex involving blood and broken bottles. All the standard tropes of this genre are present here(including a whole boat-load of plot-twists that show up towards the climax) but they're all laid out really well and this one has shot to near the top of my personal favorite giallos list.
Director Sergio Martino would follow this with TORSO which is an example of a gorier giallo that plays more like a slasher flick but I don't think it tops this one in anything but blood. I really need to check out more of Martino's thrillers from this era.
It's a bit sad that by the 80s slasher flicks would replace films like this but not have any of the flair that these movies exhibit. AKA BLADE OF THE RIPPER and THE NEXT VICTIM!
While I enjoy pretty much every Shaw Brothers kung fu flick this one delves a lot more into the fantasy world than the more gritty films that are my favorites of the martial-arts genre. This is based on some Chinese mythology involving the legendary Monkey King character and his journey to the west. Along the way he encounters the title villain who isn't actually a baby but just a young god. There's also a whole slew of other gods who show up to help and it all ends with a very pro-Buddhism message. Most of the fights here are super stagey and dance-like and the whole movie seems more like an opera than a film the way it's presented. It's also really short. The version I caught was about an hour long. There are some weird elements like fighting tree-men, a statue who transforms into a man and then into a centaur and a pig-man which may make you feel like you might have dropped some acid before viewing. Check it out if you like the more DRAGONBALL Z-feeling stuff but skip it if you're into the more traditional Shaw classics.
Saturday, March 19, 2016
Most well known as THE DEVIL'S NIGHTMARE this was a non-descript VHS tape that I picked up for $1 that just had a SUCCUBUS label on the side. Not being able to pass up such a mystery or such a bargain I had to check this out again. The movie itself is one I've seen many times over the years starting with Commander USA's Groovy Movies program and then on VHS as THE DEVIL WALKS AT MIDNIGHT and I always enjoyed the creepy atmosphere and general Eurotrash-horror-vibe of the whole thing. It starts out in shocking fashion with a Nazi stabbing a baby to death! Along the way it does slow down and drag in places but if you can overlook that it's an entertaining watch with a sexy Erika Blank wearing some skimpy attire and offing, in various ways, a group of travelers who represent the seven deadly sins. An extra spooky Satan also lurks about, we get a death by iron maiden and even a lesbian scene is thrown in for the hell of it.
Besides the alternate titles shown above this is also known as THE DEVIL'S LONGEST NIGHT, NIGHTMARE OF TERROR, CASTLE OF DEATH and my favorite(though it doesn't fit this movie very well) VAMPIRE PLAYGIRLS.
Played on a double-bill with a rape-filled British giallo:
This is a weird re-titling since there's only one kinda/sorta-vampire chick in this:
Friday, March 18, 2016
There was a whole slew of these serial-killer bio-pics released in the early 2000s. I'm pretty sure all of them were released direct-to-DVD and like most every other horror movie made in that time period they mostly all sucked. This one is no exception. It at least gets many of the facts of Dahmer's life right with a reenactment of his very first killing, mummified heads in boxes, arguments with his dad and some gay-bar rape shenanigans. At the same time it omits pretty rudimentary stuff like cannibalism and Dahmer's big vat of acid he used to dispose of body parts. For a movie about some pretty gruesome murders there is very little blood or gore in this thing and plays more like some 90s indie drama about a lonely weirdo looking for some gay love. It also has a mostly sappy boring soundtrack that makes me want to take a nap. To be fair I've only viewed the R-rated disc of this movie and there's apparently an unrated version out there which might make things at least a bit juicier if not any more exciting.
There is what is supposed to be a way better, and way gorier, Dahmer flick called THE SECRET LIFE OF JEFFREY DAHMER (1993) which I unfortunately have never seen but I will have to rectify that soon.
Wednesday, March 16, 2016
So this movie starts out with Prince Mamuwalde getting bitten by Count Dracula and holed up in his tomb. Then we jump forward 200 years or so to the 1970s where pimps and groovy soul musicians hang out at nightclubs. Lots of necks get bitten turning people into green-faced blood-slurping monsters. This is probably one of the better known relics of the blaxploitation era due to it's goofiness and it makes for a fun watch. The highlights are definitely a couple of appearances by a cool dude named Skillet(Jitu Cumbuka) who totally should have had more screen time. Thalmus Rasulala as the main hero is also pretty damn suave as he usually is in these types of films..
Got a chance to catch a print of this last night on the big screen and even after many viewings both on TV and VHS it's still a good time.
There was a sequel the next year with Pam Grier which, from what I remember, is just about as good as this one.
Known in Spain as BLACK DRACULA!:
Tuesday, March 15, 2016
Probably the spookiest and most entertaining documentary about ol' Charlie Manson came out pretty quickly following the sentencing of "The Family". How much of this thing is actually true or not I have no idea but at least the people spouting off all the tales of madness and murder and drugs seem to be pretty convincing and if some acid-head freak believes Manson can bring dead animals back to life, who am I to argue? Appropriately creepy weirdo hippie tunes(thanks to a couple of former "Family" members) fill the soundtrack and we get some great soundbites(mostly from Squeaky Fromme and Charlie himself) where chaos and murder is promised if you don't get your shit together man!! If you're ever feeling too happy about life throw this on for what's sure a downer of a ride through a messed up time. AKA MANSON AND SQUEAKY FROMME (reissue title after Fromme made headlines for attempting to assassinate President Ford)
There was a sequel/follow-up film made by the same director using some of this same footage in 2007:
Monday, March 14, 2016
I saw this movie when it first came out back in 1986, which was kinda hard to do since I was only 15 at the time and it was released unrated, but despite this struggle it instantly became one of my favorite things in the world. I could quote entire scenes from memory(especially any scene with Chop-Top in it!) and figured no movie could ever match it's insanity, gore and absurd humour. As I've gotten older it's gotten harder to ignore some of the obvious flaws with this film. The main thing is there's really no reason for a sequel to what is the greatest horror film ever made and if you were going to make one, maybe making it an over-the-top black comedy isn't the best choice. I can see why director Tobe Hooper wouldn't want to try and top the aura of the first movie but it woulda been interesting to have seen him attempt something at least a bit scarier. There are really just jump scares here and there and the rest is all gore and dumb 80s jokes but if you were in your teens or 20s in the 1980s or if you just wanna see a really goofy cartoonish version of Leatherface then this might be the best thing ever for ya.
There are 2 more sequels after this in the 90s which ignore this movie and in comparision make this movie look amazing! There's also a complete dogshit 2000s remake and a retarded prequel and finally another sequel(in 3D this time!) which ignores those all movies and somehow has people traveling through time or curing the aging process or something since it makes zero sense.
Friday, March 11, 2016
I've met director Ted V. Mikels before and he's a really cool guy with a sweet moustache. I kinda wish I enjoyed his film more. This one is cool almost solely because it's the other movie that the great Tura Satana stars in and just like in FASTER PUSSYCAT, KILL, KILL she kicks ass here. Executing her foes and really anyone who doesn't follow her orders. These parts are great but sadly there are many other long drawn-out bits where we get to watch John Carradine fiddle with knobs and perform experiments in his lab while his hunchbacked assistant snarls and leers constantly. In addition to this there's talky bits where the forces of good are trying to stop "The Astro Zombies"(really just one Astro Zombie) from murdering gals. It's almost like there are three movies going on and two of them are really dull. You do get some very small blood splatter during the kill scenes, a toy robot war and the plot does basically come together at the end. The biggest obvious flaw here, outside of the not so great acting and insane storyline, is the totally unconvincing day-for-night shots which make up a big portion of the movie towards the end. Scenes of people running around in super bright daylight while you hear crickets chirping and it's supposed to be midnight certainly spotlight Mr. Mikels shortcomings at creating any realism but the movie still has enough schlocky charm for me to recommend it to die-hard trash fans. Released on VHS as SPACE VAMPIRES.
There were three sequels to this made in the 2000s by Ted V. but a. they're too new for me and b. they appear to have been shot digitally so I'm not in any hurry to watch those but if you're more adventurous than me give them a look.
Tuesday, March 8, 2016
The original ONE ARMED SWORDSMAN came out back in the 60s, starred Jimmy Wang Yu and had a few sequels. This one is not actually a sequel but does star Mr. Wang Yu and he does fight using just one arm throughout most of the movie. Also for a "swordsman" he doesn't use a sword much at all but just fights bare-handed for the most part. To further negate the title I'm pretty sure he kills more than nine killers. There's also a big reveal at the end which negates even more of the title. Accuracy in title for these kinds of films isn't really all that important but what is important is seeing what's going on during the fight scenes. Sadly the version I have of this on DVD from some company called Bonzai Media Corporation is wretchedly cut to shit. There's parts where our hero is fighting some evil villainous fellow and before you can blink his foe magically just disappears with no clue as to what did him in. This is pretty frustrating viewing and while I can't judge the actual movie because of this it definitely left a bad taste in my mouth watching what I assume is some kinda clunkily-edited-for-TV version. On the plus side at least it was widescreen and seemed like it might be a halfway decent chop-sockey flick with some wacky elements thrown into it like a gigantic chessboard with humans used as chess-pieces, a half-woman/half-man(tranny?) person and a swordfighter who uses a sword bigger than himself to battle with. The plot here is pretty much just ol' One Arm going from fight to fight so maybe if someone could edit a story into this along with all the bloody violence I would give this a rewatch.
This subtitled Youtube version is way bloodier than my DVD. Still not much of a plot though:
Sunday, March 6, 2016
I'd been wanting to see this for a while after hearing it compared to HOUSE which is one of my favorite haunted house/ghost movies ever. Sadly I shouldn't have believed the hype on this one. It does outdo HOUSE in the gore department which is cool and you get a guy ripped in half by acid of some sort, another guy completely melting down to a skeleton and then ashes and a big battle-axe to the head. Unfortunately none of this stuff makes any sense and you have stupid scenes of people running away from shadows, a burned up ghost-baby and various things happening for no reason at all illuminated by POLTERGEIST-looking lightning and whatnot. This was based on a Japanese video game which should have been my first clue that this wasn't gonna be anything great since I can't even think, off the top of my head, of one movie based on a video game that's worth a shit.
There is a more recent SWEET HOME which is a Spanish movie about murderers in an apartment building which has nothing to do with this.
While romantic comedies are not something I normally watch this movie looked bizarre enough that I gave it a shot and it did indeed turn out to be pretty strange. It all starts out as a sort of Asian SEX AND THE CITY with a group of gals discussing their sex life and coming to the conclusion that all men are dogs. This theme will obviously be the main thrust of the movie and this may endear it to the more feminist-identifying members of society. From there it turns into one of those stupid Hollywood "people's-personalities-switching-bodies-movies" like FREAKY FRIDAY or something, except here it's a porn-obsessed guy swapping with our main lady's beloved dog. Then things get weird and raise a few questions. Mainly does this lady love her dog so much she wants to fuck it and would that be bestiality if he resided in a human body? Why does the dog character have so much trouble getting turned on by humans? He claims they smell awful but how can anything smell worse than a pile of dogshit and they seem to enjoy that scent on a fairly regular basis. In America, I assume, this would most likely be a kids movie but here it's clearly going for a more adult audience with it's sexual hijinks, peeping Toms and some parts where dogs are threatened to be chopped up and eaten by various folks. Who exactly was this made for besides weirdos who enjoy bizarre cinema? There's a super-fake looking dog puppet head that shows up in the movie for like 5 seconds. Why would they use that for the poster shot??? And finally why the hell is there a blue and purple dog, who don't even show up in the movie, on the DVD cover for this? These questions are sadly never fully answered and this is a pretty dumb movie overall but I will at least give it a couple of points for being unique in its dumbness.
Very similar to the earlier SANTO AND BLUE DEMON VS. THE MONSTERS, this Mexican wrestlers vs. monsters flick pairs down the creatures to two big main villains. Of course there is the hump-backed Igor-like assistant that sets everything into motion, Dracula's vampire slaves and, what I found to be one of the coolest elements, a whole gang of werewolves led by main Wolf Man, Mr, Rufus Rex. Rufus not only has one of the best names for a werewolf person but he also sports some snazzy outfits including a golden shirt and very massive 70s sideburns. As a bonus he also looks a lot like Paul Naschy's Hombre Lobo which is pretty sweet. There's also a surprising amount of bloodletting, most notably when Dracula is revived by having someone's neck slit like a slaughtered pig above him, in a film that I assume was viewed by many young Mexican children at the time. While I would rank ...VS. THE MONSTERS as the king of these kooky wrassler movies this one is a close second. This does get a little bogged down in the long grappling scenes which look as though they were filmed in an empty arena in outer-space, besides this though it's good kitschy times.
Hazing is tough for wolfmen:
Wednesday, March 2, 2016
This is really a tough kung-fu flick to get through. I think my main problem is that the fighting here is really quite lackluster. The main hero(Ming Chiang?) basically just jumps around and shoves guys and it's not just him because the main female protagonist(Ching Ching Cheung?) shows off pretty much the same technique. Also since this made way back in 1972 and not in the 80s there are no ninjas at all despite the title on my DVD and that picture up there. There is a guy who wears a vest that looks like it's covered in bananas that shoots spikes and some fire-twirling acrobats, besides this though it's a lot of boredom and sleep-inducement. Original title- THE FIST THAT KILLS
Whenever anyone asks me what my favorite HG Lewis movie is I can't help but say this one. Of course Mr. Lewis will always be remembered as the guy who pretty much invented the gore film with his classic BLOOD FEAST but this is the one out of all his movies that I've probably re-watched the most. The kitchiness is overflowing here and all that over-the-top ridiculousness can't be ignored. The story is basically a strange feminist inversion of the biker flick with a gang of snazzily-attired ladies called The Maneaters led by a gal named Queen who sounds like Alice Kramden while barking out orders to her gang of insatiable nutjob ladies. This being an HG Lewis film you do get some ultra-violence including a guy dragged behind a bike and a decapitation to move things along and while most of the bad stuff happens to men there is a rape thrown in. Why weren't there more female biker flicks like this back in the golden era? I guess the world wasn't ready for such amazing sights yet.
The Cramps were fans!: