Sunday, July 31, 2011

Terror Firmer (1998)

Man, I love this movie. Terror Firmer is of course a Troma film but its one of my favorites from the team. Lloyd Kaufman gets back in  the directors chair and shits out the best movie he has done since the 80's with movies like The Toxic Avenger and Class Of Nuke Em High.

With a pace that is faster then hell and every frame filled to the max with extras and any kind of oddity that you can think of Terror Firmer makes for one of the silliest and fun gore flicks ever made.

It is also sort of Kaufman's autobiography. The plot revolves around an independent film crew (Troma Studios to be exact) who are struggling to finish the latest Toxic Avenger sequel. There is a murderer running around on set killing off the cast and crew in slasher fashion and every kill is soaked with blood. Scream queen Debbie Rochon shows up as a nymphomaniac who offers up some bare breasts in numerous sex scenes "Don't get any blood or snot on my hair, on my face, on my nipples or in my pussy" and even gets some golden showers from Mr. Lloyd Kaufman himself.

Firmer has plenty of other naked flesh running around from men and women "Now where are them big breasted women at" and in one of the greatest moments we have a naked man with a nub-penis running through Time Square NYC. "Do you love my nub penis?" We also have close-up's on a hermaphrodites genitals. Ron Jeremy also appears as a child molester who has been severely mutilated and locked in a cage. Jeremy lost his eyes, lips and even his giant rocket and the makeup is somewhat reminiscent of that 80's Linda Blair flick Grotesque. Terror Firmer also comes complete with numerous exploding heads, exploding breasts "Thanks for the mamories", exploding Lloyd Kaufman's, Achy-breaky skulls (complete with a sharp broken bong being smashed into a mans head and his brains are pulled out and dropped into a frying pan full of cocaine), Bong water is also poured into the victims anus. Troma fans will be happy to know that the Penis Monster also appears in the movie. Then we get some penis wounds (complete with feminist rantings and stretched out genitals), hand dismemberment, leg dismemberment's and decapitations are all on display. We have crucified puppets, gratuitous vomiting, a fetus is ripped from a woman's womb, fingers are chopped off, a escalator eats a fat man (complete with axe hacking), We get car explosions, crazy costumes, eye-violence, stabbings, gun violence, pickle masturbation and countless other perverse ways to die.

Terror Firmer is bound to get a laugh out of anyone who likes extreme cinema and offend the rest of the world at the same time. My only recommendation is that if you have a stick up your ass you do not watch this movie because it will just make it more sore.

Tenement (1985)

Michael and Roberta Findlay were making some of the trashiest exploitation flicks from the mid. 60's through the late 70's. Their filmography ranged from sexploitation sleaze-fests with titles such as Touch Of Her Flesh and Curse Of Her Flesh to schlock horror such as Shriek Of The Mutilated and the cult classic Snuff. After the tragic death of Michael Findlay in 1977 Roberta continued making movies, leaving us a path of cinematic trash. Tenement being one of her best.

Tenement, also known as Game Of Survival and Slaughter In The South Bronx follows a violent street gang from... Well the Bronx. The gang which consists of some actual South Bronx gangsters and junkies along with actors such as Paul Calderon who would go on to do King Of New York and Dan Snow who most would remember as Cigar Face from The Toxic Avenger... Anyway this leather clad gang of punks declares war on the helpless people who live in a Tenement. The tenants within consist of a blind man, a pregnant woman, senior citizens, a fat drunk, women and children. They don't stand much of a chance against these city street punks who armed with guns, knives, chains and are flying high on p.c.p. but they fight till the end and it makes for one hell of a nasty watch.

One women is gang raped by the gang and is killed with a broomstick to the vagina. Another old women has her throat cut with a straight razor and then is necromanced by a ruthless gang member. We get a pair of scissors through the eyes, a German Shepard is gutted, penis wounds (complete with a baseball bat to the penis and a knife through the penis), gun wounds, some hatchet-fu, death by electrocution, a rat is impaled on a switchblade and then shoved into a mouth, third degree burns from boiling pots of water, a women is crushed by a falling refrigerator, metal rod through the guts, rat poison disguised as heroin overdose (complete with spasm and a bit of blood), gory stabbings, strangulation, death from 5th floor window (complete with achy-breaky skulls to the pavement) and some bare breasts for added entertainment.

The body count is pretty high in this movie and just about everybody dies in original and violent ways. I have heard people compare Tenement to Troma movies and I can see where they are coming from at times but on the other hand Tenements level of violence is much more serious then something like Class Of Nuke Em High or something like that.

Roberta Findlay would later go on to do Prime Evil and the horrible Blood Sisters. My personal favorite of hers is a 70's  porn flick called Dear Pam which if you can find on video is well worth the money. Tenement is another example of Roberta Findlay's sleaze-genius and is highly recommended for fans of over the top violent revenge flicks. It holds no punches and makes no apologies. Check it out!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

A Taste Of Blood (1967)

A Taste Of Blood is the most boring out of all the Herschell Gordon Lewis gore flicks. It is also has the most production value out of all of his films and is the longest movie the Godfather Of Gore has ever done. A Taste Of Blood runs at just under two hours where all of H.G. Lewis other stuff stuck at the typical 90 minute mark.

Bill Rogers who plays the priest in the sexploitive Shanty Tramp takes on the role of a vampire named John Stone. Stone is a direct descendant from the late Count Dracula and when a bottle of "Brandy" arrives in the mail from his ancestor, Mr. Stone becomes a murderous blood-sucker. (P.S. it wasn't Brandy in the bottle.) Bill Rogers has a striking resemblance to Hammers Christopher Lee and makes for a pretty good vampire.

Aside from Bill Rogers there is a actress who looks exactly like Miss Shanty Tramp herself but according to it is two different actress's. If it is not the same actress then they must be identical twins. The Godfather Of Gore shows up himself in a cameo as the captain of a ship with a big mustache and the worst fake British accent of all time.

A Taste Of Blood runs to long with not enough of the H.G. Lewis gore that we all know and love so much. Sure we get multiple steaks through the heart and a few blood drinking moments but the film is as tame as can be. The best qualities of the film is the crusty makeup that Bill Rogers wears when he transforms into the vampire. The blue lighting also adds a element of weirdness. On the other hand Lewis seemed to have no concept of night for day and vice verso shots on this one. The day and night continuity in A Taste Of Blood is even worse then that of Gore Gore Girls.

Only worth a watch for die-hard Herschell Gordon Lewis fans. The rest of the world should skip it. It runs to long and doesn't offer enough blood and guts.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Death In The Shadows (1985)

I now know what Johnny Rotten meant when he said "Ever get the feeling you're being cheated". He must have seen Death In The Shadows. Okay maybe not because he said that in 1978 and this piece of shit came out in 1985. Either way I definitely feel cheated and forcing myself to sit through it in it's entirety was a task and a half.

The title is Death In The Shadows and I find that quite suiting considering the few murder scenes take place in the dark. In fact these shadows are so dark you can barely see whats going on. This movie makes Andy (Ghastly Ones) Milligan's movies look well lit.

The story: follows a 17 year old girl named Valerie (in the shadows of course) who's mother was murdered by a hit and run driver. After the autopsy Valerie learns that her mother was a virgin there for she is not in fact her mother. The deeper she digs to find out who her real parents are the more the danger grows. She is stalked by a mad man with something to hide. He murders Valerie's uncle and slashes Val up a bit in one scene but none of it is interesting or worth watching. Valerie gets naked a few times but its usually to dark to enjoy the sites.

Stay far away from this Dutch title. You're better off turning off your lights and trying to watch the posters on your wall.
Click the image below for an example...

Sukiyaki Western Django (2007)

Takashi Miike proves every time that he is a weirdo. This time around Miike tries his hand at a western but just doing a Japanese western isn't enough for Miike. Instead he chooses to do his own version of the Franco Nero, cult classic, spaghetti western, Django.

The movie was shot in Japan with an all Japanese cast with the exception of Quentin Tarantino. As if this isn't weird enough Takashi Miike chooses to shoot the film in English instead of dubbing over it later. The obvious language problem amongst the Japanese cast just adds to the bizarre tone that Sukiyaki Western Django gives off. Similar to the way that dubbing in Italian horror of the 70's and 80's added a sureal vibe that doesn't exist in the subtitled versions.

Sukiyaki plays more like a prequel to Django then a remake and Miike's stylish form of film making really takes the film further away then anyone could have imagined.

A mysterious gunslinger comes to town in the search of gold but this time he isn't dragging a coffin (that comes later). He is not so humbly greeted by two rival gangs, the Reds and the Whites. Both gangs are in search of the gold and are constantly at war. When our gunslinger doesn't choose sides the odds are stacked against him and we get a total shoot-em-up blood bath. We get a new version of the oh so memorable Gatling gun massacre which really doesn't live up to the Italian original. We get lingerie wearing Asian prostitute (unfortunately no nudity), plenty of gun-fu, some samurai action, crossbow-fu, rape, and a bad-ass bitch who pisses while standing up. holes are blown through stomachs, gang members are blown to shit with dynamite, we get some split skulls with swords, and a man is implaled with a giant crucifix. The best part is that its all done with bright red gore.

Check it out for a fast paced, action packed, mindless good time with bright colors and some very stylized murder scenes. Some call it stupid, some call it art, but I call it fun.

Succubus (1968)

Jesus Franco films have a tendency to be either long, drawn-out, nonsensical, boring, droolers or high entertainment in exploitation art. Sometimes that barrier is very thin in the world of Franco and the viewers mind frame at the time of screening can have much to do with the overall experience. Of course this would stand true with most movies but it seems a bit more so with a Franco film. In other words, you really have to be in the mood for a Franco movie to enjoy it. For instance, Vampyros Lesbos is considered by many to be one of Franco's best but nobody can deny the fact that it can also be a real sleeper if one is not prepared for this sort of thing.

In this sense Succubus is very much like Vampyros. It carries the same dream like vibe and every camera angle is unique with perfectly framed characters, props and local. The soundtrack on Succubus might not be rockin as is that of Vampyros but it definitely adds a level of surreal weirdness that is necessary for this sort of film.

Succubus is a true piece of art and its almost hard to believe that the same man who did movies like Barbed Wire Dolls and Sadomania is capable of creating such class amongst his trash (if that makes any sense).

There isn't much plot to follow on this one. Instead we follow a pretty red-head through strip clubs, art houses, night clubs, weird bondage role playing shows and of course her love life. She is a mystery to all and wanted by women and men alike. The only problem is most can only have her once... As we follow our Succubus through a distinguished Franco camera lens, the bodies of her lovers drop.

Aside from the dreamy. artsy-fartsy stuff Succubus offers up a hippie-delic acid scene (complete with creepy midgets, and a house party on their hands and knees pretending to be horny doggy's). We also get a fair amount of nudity (after all this is a Franco movie). Mr. J&B appears constantly, We get a strip-teasing, Lesbians, whippings, multiple stabbings, achy-breaky skulls (complete with angel statue to the face), Mannequins come to life in one of the creepiest moments in the film but the thing that I found most interesting was certain dialogue. Mainly in scenes where the characters discuss various artists and their first association with them.

Succubus is the perfect movie to watch alone. It's not the type of movie you can recommend to entertain a group of friends with. In that case you would need something like Devils Nightmare with Erika Blanc as a Succubus. Come to think of it the two films would make a pretty good double feature, Succubus would have to play first though. Otherwise there will be some soaring in the audience.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Torso (1973)

Sergio Martino, the same director who gave us exploitation greats such as Mountain Of The Cannibal God, Hands Of Steel and Screamers delivers one of the sleaziest Giallo's in euro-trash cinema with Torso. If you came to see beautiful butchered women, you came to the right place.

The full uncut version of Torso also know as Carnal Violence offers up lots of hot euro-babes who bare it all... breast and bush. The only problem is there is a sex-maniac running around in true Giallo fashion with black gloves and strangling the girls with a scarf. The killer also wears a mask that is reminiscent of a Mexican wrestling Luchadore mask. However last time I checked Santo didn't chop up any pretty girls in Santo Vs. The Zombies and I suppose the whole masked killer thing is more of an American thing then Italian thing, Except of course in very few like Bava's Blood And Black Lace. The iconic American masked villain-slashers like Michael Myers wouldn't appear on screen for another five years or so.

For me the plot isn't overly interesting on this one and the story doesn't keep you on the edge of your seat like some of the better Argento or Fulci Giallo flicks but then again. I came here to see people die and this guy is one sick fucker... In the one scene that made this film so affective for me the audience sees a girl who is hiding in the corner of a room that is filled with her best friends dead bodies. The killer hacks all of her friends up one by one with a hack saw. The girl witnesses everything and has to hold her breath (or vomit) back while the horrible atrocity is going on. This whole scene reminded me of the Richard Speck massacre with the one survivor hiding under the bed while her friends were being raped, murdered and mutilated. For this scene alone I found Torso to be delightfully sick and twisted and this moment in the movie earns the film the right to be gifted with a title as great as "Torso".

Lovers of blood, breasts and gloved killers should get a kick from this one. I won't say who the killer is because that's not any fun but I will say that fans of this movie would most likely be fond of the equally trashy Slaughter Hotel with Klaus Kinsky.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Terror Train (1980)

Jamie Lee Curtis is terrorized yet again in this 1980 slasher. Although Prom Night which came out the same year is the more popular of the two Terror Train is still a cool little slasher flick with a few elements that make it stand out from the rest. First off the killer changes his mask constantly which keeps the movie interesting and unpredictable... Well at least unpredictable for a "typical slasher".

Along with the constant change of masks and costumes the killer doesn't have a weapon of choice. He uses swords, knives, an axe and various other sharp objects. Jamie Lee Curtis digs back to her Halloween weapon of choice and proves yet again that a coat hanger can do damage on more then a unborn. My main problem with this movie is that to many of the murders happen off screen. Still the aftermath is somewhat satisfying and we do get a bit more blood then the average off-screen-slash-em flick.
Terror Train offers up a decapitation, hand dismemberment, achy-breaky skulls complete with faces being smashed through bathroom mirrors, throat slashing, bare breasts, a sword through the gut, a sword through the back, a sword through the head, finger chopping. a paper spike to the face, an earring is ripped out, bodies thrown from a train and one guy is run over by the train.

Another thing that makes this movie unique is that the famous magician David Copperfield plays a big role and also has a death scene. This is Copperfield's one and only film. Perhaps he didn't enjoy having a sword pushed through his torso and head.

Terror Train is one of those 80's horror flicks that is filled with characters who like to play really silly and usually gory pranks on each other. Similar to movies like April Fools Day or the character of Shelly in Friday The 13th Part 3-D. Although still cheesy I suppose the gags are slightly more effective in this one. One of them offers up a scene with a mutilated torso, complete with a bit of necrophilia.

I personally have a thing for these horror on a train movies. Night Train Murders is my personal favorite. Then you always have the nazisploitation movies like Hell Train and Fraulein Devil. Check this one out for ridiculous costumes, Jamie Lee Curtis & magic shows.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Death Warmed Up (1984)

If this one isn't from Mars then it definitely must be from New Zealand. This 80's gore flick is totally off its rocker. It doesn't make to much sense but its a whole lot of fun to watch.

A mad scientist hypnotizes a kid with murder for a mission. The kid blows away his parents with a shotgun in gory detail and he is locked away in a mental institution ran by the very same mad scientist who had him blow away his parents. Seventeen years later the kid is released from the loony-bin and he tracks down the mad scientist who did him wrong to act out some revenge but things don't go as planed when there is a outbreak of sub-human, lunatics with very violent tendencies.

Its a cool story but it really doesn't make any sense. Things seem to happen for no reason and are never explained. We don't even ever find out why the mad scientist is creating these sub-human, psychos. Another thing that is really weird about this movie is that the kid who is seeking revenge brings three friends along with him on a vacation. His friends are unaware that they are going to be taking part in some bloody vengeance.

On the other hand Death Warmed Up is a totally fun gore flick. It doesn't even really fit into any horror sub genre because it plays like a cross between a post apocalypse flick and a zombie movie. With human melt-downs and of course the mad scientist.

The movie offers up some exploding head action, more then one open brain surgery scenes complete with bone saws and other skull cracking devices, We get 80's achy-breaky skulls complete with that special effect that was used in all the 80's werewolf movies, where it looks like there is a balloon under the flesh. A sexy nurse is stabbed with scissors (complete with bloody splatter), two shotgun murders (complete with flying guts). Dirt bike chase scene that ends with a biker impaled on a pole (complete with gut spilling), repeated gut stabbing, a pervy hunchback, a tid bit of tit & a muscle man shower scene from the guy who played in that awful 90's Hercules television show.

Leave your brain at home or with your favorite psycho-surgeon and check out Death Warmed Up for a splattery good time from New Zealand.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Street Trash (1987)

If you were to ask me to define the 80's splatter genre the first films that would come to mind would be Bad Taste and Street Trash. This movie has a level of camp that makes it impossible to take the movie serious at all, nor does it want you to but on the other hand they took the special effect very seriously. Not in the realistic sense that movies like Maniac (1980) went for because the blood spattered mess that this one leaves behind is some of the brightest colors ever.

I always said that the perfect double feature would be Street Trash and C.H.U.D. because both films are filled to the brim with filthy, dirty bums and they are both horror flicks. I suppose now that Hobo With A Shotgun has been unleashed upon all of us homelessploitation nuts, we can have a triple feature.

I have always related Street Trash to Troma films. It has that sort of chaotic style running through it that is found in films like The Toxic Avenger and Class Of Nuke Em High. Where Troma uses seemingly thousands of extras to fill the screen and help their films move along at an insane pace Street Trash does the same thing with... well trash. The sets and locations are packed out with trash and garbage and it adds a level of dirtiness that the movie needs to work.

The plot if you can call it that follows a bunch of "Bums" through their daily lives of drinking and... well bumming. They live in a new york city junk yard and when a local liquor store gets a bad batch of "Viper" booze, the bums start melting down. Neon colored blood flows through the streets with every bum-melt-down. Street Trash offers shit-loads of memorable scenes. One consists of a homeless man who is pulled into a toilet. First his hands brake off, then ooze pours from his mouth and out his pant legs. When its all said and done we have a strange looking toilet monster left floating. We also have hand made knives from human bones which are imbeded into the back of rival homeless folk, we get kleptomaniac bums who trash grocery stores, a decapitation, exploding bodies, bum-sex, a homeless gang-bang rape scene, achy-breaky skull smashing, Vietnam flashbacks (complete with explosions), necrophilia, a quick titty scene, a fat pervert who tries to rape his Secretary, and a whole bunch of memorable lines "Fuck you! Give me a bottle of booze... Here's my dollar... Suck my dick!".

Street Trash is a perfect choice of trash that is best used to entertain a room full of drunken friends. If they aren't amused this probably means they are offended and if they are offended you probably need to chose better friends.

Contraband (1980)

Luci Fulci is remembered by most for his graphic violence and gory depictions of death in his horror films. He is recognized by many as The Godfather Of Gore, a name that is also used while referencing the great Herschell Gordon Lewis. Many of Fulci's films outside of the horror genre go unwatched by the pure horror audience which is a big mistake because he has ventured into many different genre's. Sexploitation movies, comedies and crime flicks like Contraband still have much to offer and sometimes can be as gory as his horror flicks.

Contraband offers up plenty of the red stuff, with graphic scenes of gun violence. We have brains being blown through the back of skulls, shattered skulls, machine guns to the face, a woman has her face burnt off with a blow torch and it is one of the few moments in cinematic history where it is shown in great gory detail. Contraband shows massive shotgun wounds to the torso (complete with chunks of guts flying across the screen), a nasty rape scene, brutal stabbings... Couples are blown up in bed while screwing for fuck-sake. Contraband is pure bloody mayhem.

These were Fulci's greatest days. The cult classic Zombie a.k.a. Zombi 2 would come out only one year before this epic crime flick and titles like The Beyond, Gates Of Hell and New York Ripper were right around the corner.

Fabio Testi (What Have You Done To Solange?) takes on the main role as Luca, a member of an Italian mafia family who has a vendetta against rival crime lords who killed his brother. Ajita Wilson (Sadomania, Hell Penitentiary) also shows up as a prostitute and shows a bit of tit as usual. Fulci himself also appears in a much appreciated cameo as a machine gun wielding psycho who blows away the enemy and leaves a bloody mess as well.

Contraband is probably my favorite of all Italian crime flicks and is on the top of the recommendation list as far as I'm concerned. Gore galore!

House That Screamed (1969)

While watching this for the first time I kept thinking to myself, this thing has to be made for television. It's as soft as can be and the violence is to a bare minimal. The whole thing takes place in a boarding school for girls but there isn't any nudity. The girls even wear clothes in the shower scenes. Then I realized that this thing is widescreen, so there is no way that it was made for t.v. back in 1962 but it apparently was a big t.v. movie in Spain.

As I mentioned the movie takes place in a school for girls and it offers the perfect setting for a nasty Euro-Trash flick. We have the sadistic teachers, a pervy teenage boy who spies on the girls while bathing and there is even whippings for punishment. The problem is that is just done with to much class and we all know that class equals a boring movie... Why would you even make a movie like this and not bare any flesh or at least cash in on the sex and violence. Well I suppose this is why The House That Screamed is the perfect candidate for television. This is also why I completely despise the movie.

It did a good job as far as cinematography, lighting, setting and wardrobe goes because it is an effective period piece. It is sort of a clash between the Hammer Studios, Gothic horror and an Italian giallo with elements of a women in prison movie. We have a straight razor killer running around but he only kills two people on screen. Then we have a Pieces style ending when we learn that the killer is putting together his dream girl with the best body parts from each girl. The ending is stupid and the whole movie is a giant waste of time. Some how this thing got great reviews but for me this house just had me screaming for the end credits. Boring!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Official Halloween Parody (2011)

Zero Tolerance releases yet another crappy horror-porn parody. Unlike the terrible Official Friday The 13th Parody this one offers up a few laughs, mainly from actor James Bartholet (Saw : A Hardcore Parody) who plays Dr. Loomis this time.

This parody would be completely unwatchable if it wasn't for Bartholet. His portrayal of Loomis is childish but extremely funny. Bartholet seems to be the only one who did his homework here and he doesn't do a horrible job impersonating Donald Pleasance. If only the rest of the cast and crew showed the slightest bit of interest we might have had a decent movie here.

This XXX parody was misleading with an opening that was pretty true to the 1978 original. With the steady-cam lurking around outside the windows while a young, unsupervised couple make-out on the couch. This is a porno so of course it goes into a hardcore sex scene and then the Michael Myers character picks up the clown mask and a kitchen knife and slashes his sister up. From here on the movie really goes downhill with inadequate direction and enough continuity to choke a Troma Studios member. They had a real hard time with the day for night and night for day on this one. After a while it almost seems to be done purposely.

The Official Halloween Parody offers up some loony-bin mayhem in a scene where a female patient flashes her vagina and pretends to be masturbating a penis while screaming "Where's my penis?". We get lots of genital grabbing from Dr. Loomis and repetitive yet comedic talk of "The Evil" that is Michael Myers, Anal sex, a tid bit of blood, a nympho nurse, some gun violence, and an obnoxious amount of dirty talk.
Not quite as bad as the average Zero Tolerance horror-porn but not very good either. Only worth watching for a few cheap laughs.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Keep My Grave Open (1976)

S.F. Brownring, the director of the great loony-bin flick Don't Look In The Basement goes on to do Keep My Grave Open. Also known as The House Where Hell Froze Over... Well you can call it whatever you want but I call it a piece of shit. Somehow this movie has good reviews but for the life of me I can't understand how because its just plain boring. We get a few slash-em-up scenes but the gore is as limited as can be and the weapon of choice is a sword which is kind of lame. Keep My Grave Open offers a body count of five but none of the deaths are interesting. There is no nudity to be found either and the whole thing is just a big sleeper.
The movie follows a mentally disturbed woman who believes her brother is her lover and is living with her. Her delusions become dangerous when she starts dressing up like her brother. She is sort of a reverse Norman Bates. The doctor in the film would probably be rememberd by most as the Judge in Don't Look In The Basement. "Use the axe judge! Use it! Strike down Judge! Again Judge! Once more!" He also appeared naked in the shower scene in The Goonies. Gene Ross also has a few other interesting credits to his name but he couldn't save this one. S.F. Brownring should have done us all a favor and just did a sequel to Don't Look In The Basement.