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A mad journey into the mind of the depraved!

A mad journey into the mind of the depraved!
Recommended for devolved primates only!

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

THE THREE AVENGERS (1979)


  This kung fu flick is sort of a Brucespolitation movie since it features Bruce Li. He shares the spotlight with Chin Yuet-Sang and an American dude named John(Michael Winston, who was only in this one film) to make up the titular three. The plot deals with Li's Auntie trying to keep her house from being sold and Li and his kung fu school coming to help her with some gangsters. It's pretty typical stuff but has some added nostalgic value for anyone who used to watch this back in the 80s on the local kung fu theater program since it was shown a bunch back then, most newer viewers will probably not be as forgiving with the goofy-ass humour and nonsensical dubbing. There is a ridiculous disco scene reminding us this was shot right after SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER came out in Hong Kong that is pretty amusing. AKA THE LAMA AVENGER and DRAGON ON FIRE





Friday, September 10, 2021

NIGHT OF THE EAGLES (1989)





  This is one of the best-looking films directed by Euro-sleaze master Jess Franco, unfortunately it's also one the more boring films of his. It's basically a drama about a love triangle set during World War 2. There's a minimum of actions scenes and stock footage, from a 1971 Italian war movie titled HEROES WITHOUT GLORY, is used for some of that. It's is a little weird to see Luke Skywalker himself(Mark Hamill) in a Franco flick but this is a very tame version of a Eurotrash film with nothing very exploitative about it. There's also a bit of music that makes me think ol' Jess wanted to do his version of CABARET or something. Christopher Lee, as always, does a decent job and might be one of the only reasons to watch this. AKA FALL OF THE EAGLES



                                                   Very CABARET-like!:

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

THE 7 GRANDMASTERS (1977)


  This kung fu master(Jack Long) has to travel around and defeat all the other masters in China just so he knows he's the best. Along the way he picks up a student(Lee Yi-Min) who he trains in the Pei-Mei(probably best known as that guy with the long white beard in KILL BILL) style. There's also the basic revenge tale here with Lee trying to get revenge for his murdered father. This one is pretty much wall-to-wall fighting(well choreographed thanks to Corey Yuen, who also appears as one of the grandmasters) so if that's your scene this will most likely be for you. 









SCREAM FOR HELP (1984)




  I caught this one last weekend down at the drive-in theater as part of a slasher-movie-themed event and while this was not really a slasher I still found it more entertaining than I had initially expected. I've never seen the horror flick THE STEPFATHER, which came out a few years later, but I imagine it was highly influenced by this. Director Michael Winner(know bets to me as the director of the original DEATH WISH and a bunch of other excellent Charles Bronson vehicles) delivers an effective tale of a girl who knows her new stepdad is trying to off her mom but nobody will believe her. There are a bunch of cheesy lines of  dialogue which I found delightful. The musical cues, credited to Led Zeppelin bass guitarist John Paul Jones, seem way out of place and more fitting to a Lifetime movie but overall I found this dumb 80s thriller worth staying up late at the chilly drive-in to view. 






Known in Germany as TRACE OF DEATH??:



Known in Italian as THE HOUSE IN HELL STREET: 


Known in Spanish as CRY FOR HELP:









Wednesday, September 1, 2021

BLOODSUCKING FREAKS (1976)


  I first saw this grimy, gruesome New York City sleazefest when I was around 12 or 13 years old back in the VHS days. It was a pretty scarring experience that left an indelible impression on my young mind. This film exists in a 70s porn-aesthetic world of gruesome misogynistic horror. At the time I thought the inclusion of jokes while horrific scenes involving brain-drilling, decapitations, eyeball-chomping cannibalism and all kinds of various tortures were going on only served to make things even more off-putting. Watching now, as an adult, there's obviously a great deal of black humour and I find the whole thing to be a riot. Director Joel M. Reed takes the basic outline of H.G. Lewis' classic THE WIZARD OF GORE and injects so much debauchery that he created a 42nd Street classic of his own. Unfortunately Reed would never reach these disgusting heights again and would follow this with only one crappy zombie movie  5 years later. Midget star Louie DeJesus, whose Ralphus character is the standout performance here, would go on to appear in a bunch of porn films. 

 This was originally titled THE INCREDIBLE TORTURE SHOW and wasn't given the FREAKS moniker until it was re-released in the 80s. Othjer AKA's include SARDU, MASTER OF THE SCREAMING VIRGINS and THE HERITAGE OF CALIGULA: AN ORGY OF SICK MINDS(video title)

 There are some alternate scenes involving Sardu & Ralphus in some homosexual antics that are included on the blu-ray release. 






"We dare you to keep your eyes open!":





Monday, August 30, 2021

MESSENGER OF DEATH (1988)


  So this Charles Bronson Cannon films revenge epic starts out with a bang as a whole family gets shotgun-massacred, including a bunch of children. Then Bronson gets involved. Now since he's just playing a newspaper reporter here there's really no logical reason why he kicks so much ass(throwing people out windows, down multiple flights of stairs and generally being an intimidating guy are some of his superpowers) except that's just what Bronson did best at this stage of his career. Basically pretty predictable but if you like Bronson at all it's still worth a watch at least once. 

 As a bonus the crazy killer from 10 TO MIDNIGHT(Gene Davis) shows up here in a way less crazy role.


Friday, August 27, 2021

CURSE OF EVIL (1982)


  This is one of the weirder Shaw Brothers studio films I've seen. The story concerns this family that has a dark past involving 13 people ending up dead. It's presented as a possible ghostly haunted house situation but becomes more bizarre as the film progresses. There are bitey, man-eating frogs(that roar like Godzilla), a rapey snake-man monster and a rapey regular guy that uses hypnotism to trick his victims. Decapitations, flesh-chomping, animal entrails and quite a bit of other gross gore are on display. It starts out a bit slow with all the family drama but more than makes up for it by the end. Now I just need to replace my shitty bootleg version of this so I can watch it without all the glitchy freezes. 

                                         Hungry killer frogs attack!:

Monday, August 23, 2021

TRIUMPH BY TWO KUNG-FU ARTS (1980)


  For a movie with kung fu right there in the title this one sure takes it's time before we even get to any fight scenes. For the first half hour or so it's all heavy melodrama about a guy seeking revenge for his dead father and his mom's disappointment with him for not getting it and generally for being such a loser. When we finally get to some fighting there are some weird choices including one of the end fight scenes being just a series of stills shown over some music. Some bits are also too dark to really see what's going on but I suspect that's just the garbage public domain transfers available. Skip it. AKA A FIST FOR A FIST


Sunday, August 22, 2021

CHALLENGE THE INVINCIBLE (1979)

  Cheap, crappy, Taiwanese kung fu flick. To make matters worse I watched this on YouTube and some scenes were so dark that they were basically unwatchable. The plot concerns a family, or maybe just a group of people that call each other "brother" and "sister" a lot, who have to deal with one of them double-crossing the group. Also there are a few scenes where they train some armies for the king which, I guess is the reason for the alternate title of THE ART OF WAR BY SUN TZU which make this seem like some kinda historical drama which it is not at all. There is one dumb scene where our main lady makes a bad guy smell her ass that gave me a chuckle besides this though it's pretty forgettable stuff.

 There is some notably absurd background Muzak including lovely renditions of The Beatles' Blackbird that appears over and over. 


Tuesday, August 10, 2021

INTERNATIONAL HOUSE (1933)


  I haven't seen a ton of comedies with Bela Lugosi in them so I checked this one out. Lugosi, as usual, does play the foreign bad guy here but at least he's not a mad scientist again. This is mainly a W.C. Fields slapstick showcase and he's pretty entertaining to watch. There's also a slew of other celebrities of the time including Burns & Allen, Cab Calloway(who sings a song about marijuana!), Rudy Vallee and Rose Marie from THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW(billed as Baby Rose Marie since she was only 10 years old when this was made). The big invention, that everyone in the movie is gathered to see, is just a T.V. but that was obviously a big deal back then. Old-timey sex jokes and weird dance numbers make this an amusing enough time-waster. 

TWISTED ISSUES (1988)


  I suppose this shot-on-video horror flick/music video at least serves as an interesting time-capsule showing what the skater-punk scene was like in Gainesville, Florida back in 1988. Besides that it's like pretty much every other experimental shot-on-video thing made in the 80s. It inter-splices news footage and TV junk with homemade gore. There's sort-of a plot about a skater getting whacked and coming back as a killer zombie-monster with his board drilled onto his foot but it seems like mostly just an excuse to feature your friend's band on the soundtrack. Apparently different scenes were shot by various people which would explain the disjointed nonsensical mess that results. Makes for good background noise and visuals if you're a nostalgic garbage-music fan but good luck sitting through it all.

                              Works better as a 3 minute short!:

Tuesday, August 3, 2021

ACES GO PLACES II (1983)



  This is the 2nd film in the ACES GO PLACES series from Hong Kong and the one I've seen the most. It's a total action/comedy mash-up with crazy stunts and car crashes galore. There's a robot vs. kung fu(plus a robot vs. an army of mini-robots) scene, lots of slapstick, bicycle stunts, dumb jokes, a character that's supposed to be Clint Eastwood called Filthy Harry, and lots of weirdness. Director Tsui Hark has a recurring role as an insane person. If you enjoy stupid Hong Kong hijinks that you could actually watch with a little kid, if you have to, give it a look.  AKA MAD MISSION 2

ACES GO PLACES series:

1. MAD MISSION (1982)

2. ACES GO PLACES II (1983) AKA MAD MISSION 2

3. ACES GO PLACES III: OUR MAN ON BOND STREET (1984) Tsui Hark directs this one after just appearing in the first 2 films AKA MAD MISSION 3

4. MAD MISSION 4: YOU NEVER DIE TWICE (1986) Ringo Lam directs AKA ACES GO PLACES IV

5. MAD MISSION V: THE TERRACOTTA HIT (1989) AKA ACES GO PLACES V

There was a Sammo Hung movie called LUCKY STARS GO PLACES in 1986 but that's part of another series and 6th movie in 1997(which seems more like a remake since it has a completely different cast) called 97 ACES GO PLACES






SINFONIA EROTICA (1980)


  The old story of a husband and his mistress trying to drive his wife crazy. The twist here is that "the mistress" is actually a rather flamboyant gay fella making this the gayest film director Jess Franco has ever made(male on male anyway, lesbianism is in almost all of his movies of course). I guess technically he's bi since there's also a nun that gets sexually abused by our male leads but ends up liking it because "hey this was filmed in the 70s!". Lina Romay does a pretty good job as the neglected wife but overall this is a pretty depressing tale with no clear viewpoint except maybe that people are pretty shitty. 

 One unexpected thing that did stand out to me from this is that during the finale they use the bed spear kill from FRIDAY THE 13th PART 2. Of course this was previously used in Mario Bava's BAY OF BLOOD but I would not have guessed it was gonna show up here.

 Loosely based on the writings of the Marquis DeSade who seems to be Franco's go-to guy for inspiration. AKA EROTIC SYMPHONY