June 27, 2008

Solo Review- Severance (2006)

For those of you that thought this movie is about actress Joan Severance, like I did, you're about to be disappointed. The woman has been naked in 5,233 movies, give or take, and I was all set for a retrospective of her nudity and sexual acts, but no... she's nowhere to be seen!

Sorry, Joan. We'll always have Lake Consequence.
Luckily, the movie was good enough to make me forget how upset I was: A bunch of Brit businessmen (and chicks) head into the Hungarian mountains for a team-building weekend (wow, now that's a motivational tool worth never exploring), and they all get their asses kicked by the locals. Needless to say, that Hungary has it's share of inbred mountain folk just like the deep south does here in the U.S.A., although their version is a tad more militant and they carry fully automatic weapons and flamethrowers; also, they're vengeful Russians. The cold war never fully ended, did it!?!?!

So the creepy Russian ex-militants let loose the dogs of war; they send a highly trained attack spider to wreak havoc against the foreigners, but the attempt was foiled; and they leave a special pie in the fridge for them, booby-trapped with teeth, but that doesn't do the trick either. Soon enough, they resort to good old-fashioned methods of mayhem like bear traps and Gymkata to kill the limey invaders. That's right, I said Gymkata!

I wont ruin the ending here, save to say that two Hungarian hookers save the day. This is why I love whores.

Gymkata!
This is an overall fun film, that mixes comedy and gore in just the right measure. I was waiting to be pissed off, as I am with most Horror/Comedy hybrids, but the filmmakers and actors alike pull it off and managed to make me smile a wee bit. I like the mean-spirited feel of the kills; a lot was done tongue in cheek, but they still packed the gore in, and it made me wince a few times.

Why was there no sex going on here??? Four chicks, two of them hookers, and not one person got any... although all of the killing may have put the kibosh on that...

You're telling me that they wouldn't have put out? Poppycock!
That fucking pie, man. I mean, would you have eaten that?

The hunting knife in the ass was the highlight for me, although severed limbs and bloody violence were plentiful. The bear trap was a nasty touch as well.

It's buckwheats for you, pally.
Hungarian hookers trapped in a pit... Need I say more?
I will say no more.
Finding the right lodge to begin with helps a lot, and saves everyone from being brutally killed. Also, don't mess with Hungarian hookers unless you want to have a fight on your hands! A sexy, sexy fight.

B+ This one is worth an own for me, and at least a rent for most of you. It's a good and goofy time that should satisfy the blood hungry among us, and make us laugh at the same time.

Laura Harris is in this.

Solo Review- [REC] (2007)

REC (2007)  
Sub-Genre- Epidemic/Viral Zombie 
In Attendance- Me...  
Cast Members of Note- A bunch of Spanish actors that I can't begin to name. They did real good-like though, real good.  

When fearless reporter Angela tags along with a company of Firemen on a routine midnight call, the terror of her big mouth and disregard for anything other than the damn camera filming her begins! Apparently, the fat chick from the Dawn of the Dead remake is back, and is trying to eat people in her quaint little apartment building, so the firemen along with two bumbling cops try to help her, and end up fucking up so bad that everyone ends up screwed. They kill her 24 times to no avail, and finally decide to lock her in a room with a ham, hoping she will choke to death. Does the daring plan work? You'll see... 

Thought I was kidding, didn't you?
Once bitten, the new infected zombies get really mad and try to eat everyone else; one little girl even tries to eat her mother... creepy little fuck. They start dropping like flies, these Spaniards, until there are only three of them left; thank god the guy with the camera and the loud mouthed twit of a reporter are two of them. The rest of the movie is a cat and mouse survival type of thing, with the jerk off FEMA team ordering the tenants at gunpoint to remain in the building and await "instructions." If by "Await instructions" they mean "Stay in there and die or we will shoot you ourselves", then they got their point across. Apparently FEMA  sucks in Europe too. I wont spoil the ending here, but trust me when I say that you will poop your pants, and perhaps even the pants of those near you when you see it. (I know I never expected to see Barbara Walters naked with a hammer in this movie.)

Keep crawling... you're almost free lol!

I don't think I've seen an ending as terrifying as this one in a long while. The last 10 minutes absolutely changed the movie for me, and took it to a much creepier place than just your standard "Infected people turning into killer zombie" fare. I loved the twist, and would have like to have seen that premise explored more. I'm hoping Rec 2 will give me what I want! I don't want to ruin it by saying much more, but suffice it to say that the place where the virus comes from makes me giddy. I want to see an entire movie dedicated to that subject matter. 

She looks lost.
REC is definitely frightening in a lot of ways, especially the premise. An unknown virus turning everyone around you into flesh eating madmen, while you're locked in a building with them and cant get out... that makes for some intense moments. The shaky-cam thing that is so popular in movies lately (Thanks for that one Cloverfield), is a bit distracting, but not to Blair Witch proportions. Once the creepiness begins, you'll barely notice it.  

It always drives me crazy in these movies when people wont shut up when they need to be as quiet as possible. I mean, Let's scream, argue while screaming, and scream some more when were fighting for our lives against a bunch of rabid Spaniards! Stupido. 

Scream louder, I don't think the demon in the room behind you heard that.
I still say that if the situation were real, that the camera wouldn't be used as much, and later on in the film, would be shut off completely... then again, if they did that, there wouldn't be a movie, so I digress. Still, the reporter chick didn't need to wheedle her way in front of the camera every chance she got.  

How someone didn't smack the reporter bitch in the face multiple times throughout the movie is beyond me. "Evil is after us, dummy... How about you don't scream!?!?!"  

A good mix of on screen blood and nastiness, and off screen violence you can hear but cant see. Not a gore fest, but certainly bloody enough. 

El Oucho.
 Dogs are evil, and not to be trusted. 

B+ The only reason I didn't give this one an A, was that I cant get around the blatantly dumb actions of some of the characters. Other than that, this one is well worth a rent or a buy, but see it either way.  

It's already being re-made in the U.S., as Quarantine. Look for it in October. Sigh. (*Update- Quarantine was nowhere near as good or effective as REC was.) 

June 25, 2008

#13 & #14- Anchor Bay Drive in Classics Vol. 1-

This DVD set has two movies in one; and since A Blade in the Dark is the first of them, they both get reviewed on our way through the A's. (I'll forget to do Macabre if I save it until we get to the M's.)

Sub-Genre- Giallo/Slasher
In Attendance- Me, Eryn, Machine, The Vanilla Gorilla, and Nick
Cast Members of Note- None really, save for Michele Soavi who has had a long career on both sides of the camera; working alongside Argento for many years, and directing the masterpiece Dellamorte Dellamore (Cemetery Man.)

Riiiight... Like any one on the planet can just "tell you" what an Italian Horror flick from the late 70's/early 80's is about? Guess what, they can't. Why do men from Tennessee often circumcise themselves by rubbing their peckers against rusty barbed wire fences? Can you tell me that? Oh, but that's different, right? You're all sheep. 

So anyways, our little Giallo story begins with three mongoloid children throwing a ball down a creepy staircase into a dark cellar; one of them is transgendered, and the other two nearly gay bash the poor kid to death. The kid runs for his life into the basement, only to be gay bashed to death for real this time, by the creepy killer in the cellar. At least Mr. Murder gives the other two their ball back.

Live your life, Fabrizio; I won't judge you.
We next meet Bruno, the slow-witted composer who just moved into a posh villa to finish work on his latest movie score. He soon begins to hear noises around the house and decides to investigate; unfortunately for him, he is hindered by some "slow motion" disease that he got from a hooker in Barcelona. A few hours later, he finally makes it out of the room, and (slowly) heads downstairs to the biggest basement ever made. He saves a girl, Katia, from a Scroach (That's a spider-roach hybrid for those of you who haven't been to Europe), and she asks him for a cigarette. 

Not bothering to ask her what the hell she was doing in his basement, he eventually forgets she is there, and begins composing his new masterpiece; for the record, his big accomplishment was finishing the first half of one song during his entire stay. He plays it over, and over, and over again, which I'm guessing is what drove the killer in this movie to go insane and start offing people.

Katia pays for his lack of any sort of enthusiasm and sense of urgency with her life. Within ten minutes of all of this happening, another chick randomly pops up in the house, and this time Bruno gets laid. The next morning, he kicks her out because he is very busy working on his half of a song, but is dismayed to find yet another young, sex starved girl show up randomly, only this time in the yard, not in the house. He lets her swim and shower, and then she too is killed. 

For Christ's sake Bruno, can you play more than 10 notes?!?
With all of the disappearances, some odd phone calls, a slashed nudie picture, and finding his master tape of half of a song destroyed, he wonders if something strange is going on. Far be it from me to spoil the ending here, but suffice it to say that more people die, and Bruno never finishes one frigging song. 

Lamberto Bava is the man. Like his father before him (we love you Mario Bava!), the films of Lamberto are true Giallo through and through; tense, atmospheric, bloody, creepy, confusing and poorly dubbed... they are a blood-soaked treat for us all. I can see how some people would look at a movie like this and instantly see a cheesy, dated mess... but then those are the Horror fans who pay to see remakes of The Hitcher and Shutter, and actually enjoy watching the turds. Yes, I'm an elitist prick.You should join me, because it's really nice up here on my "I'm always right" cloud.

There is so much at work in a movie like this, that it satisfies on different levels, despite it's shortcomings. Italian Horror is about atmosphere and visuals, excessive violence and tension... the price we pay for those heights that these movies usually hit is usually on the back end, and in the form of coherence and lack of sense.  It's worth every minute.

Can you please tell me just how stupid a guy has to be to find a bunch of random chicks roaming around his house,and say nothing more than"Hey, how are you?" to them? That's not very safety-minded. Not at all.

Also, let me make one thing crystal clear here: If ever I find three hot, clueless bimbos sneaking around my house, they're all getting the dick. Period. That's the price you pay for invading my sanctum, ladies.

Littlefinger?
Cross dressing children... when will it end?

Plenty o' gore to be had here, from a bloody tennis/baseball, to multiple slashings and stabbings. Stay classy Italy, we love you!

She had it coming.
A pair of late 70's style A cup pancake boobies... and that's it.

"It's not a spider, it's a cockroach!"

Scroaches do exist. Also, if you rent a villa in Europe, random slutty chicks will just show up and hang out with you.

For its time and for what it was, it's a solid flick. I'd recommend renting it before buying though, as it may not be everyones cup of tea.

B

Nick made a good point during this one, when he exclaimed: "What the fuck?" He's only 13 folks, and he already knows just what to say.

Sub-Genre- Shock/Oddity
In Attendance- Me, Eryn, Machine, The Vanilla Gorilla, and Nick
Cast Members of Note- Stanko Molnar... Come on, the guys name is stanko!

Love. This movie is about love... a 10 year old sister's love for her 4 year old brother (ages approximate), and the bathtub that she drowns him in while her mother is out whoring. Is anything sweeter? It's also about the love of a woman (the one out whoring) and a man, even after a traffic accident kills him and severs his head from his body. That doesn't stop the love, nor the lovemaking... no way. Passion will not be denied.  It's also about the love of a blind man (Blindy, we'll call him) and his ancient mother, who still loves to bathe him...  slowly, with a hard bar of soap. Sadly, she dies because she's 103 years old, so no more baths for Blindy, but he quickly falls in love with the whore who still loves a dead guy's head, and he accepts her in all of her bat-shit crazy splendor.  Love eventually drives the crazy whore to kill her other kid, mentally abuse the blind guy, and repeatedly make love to a severed head. Really.

That's Bob.
The best thing about Macabre, is that it's a disturbing flick that will make you feel like you need a shower afterward.  It's not the best example of early 80's Italian Horror, but it has it's good points; the bathtub scene, the creepy daughter, and the end. 

If you want to watch something truly morbid that's full of all kinds of WTF moments, this is the flick for you. Be aware that this one has one of those crazy, nonsensical, "WTF just happened?!?" types of endings that are so common in Italian Horror flicks of yesteryear.

There were times during this one where I would have taken a "Screaming Seagull" from someone if they would have stopped the movie. Maybe even an "Alabama Hot Pocket." It was painful at times to endure.

In the end, I just killed myself in the tub.
Seriously mom, he's like 30 years old, he can bathe himself. Drop the soap! Now! Also, what's with the horrible southern-accent dub? And why is a 10 year old girl smoking? And why are you making out with a decomposing head?!? WTF is with this movie!

The, um... "sex" scene towards the end is fairly gross... as is whats in the freezer. Other than that, Macabre is light on the blood, but heavy on disturbing scenes.

A little bit of cheesecake, but it was more creepy than it was hot.

Stanko and Stanky.
"So you're against me too! You told her my secret! Ah ha ha ha ha!" lol

Kids are evil. Also, getting head can have more than one meaning, and sometimes, all at once. Also, severed heads breathe, fly, and bite. Yep. 

Macabre is effective enough, but it is at times a rough ride to endure. Rent it before committing to the buy.

C-

That little bitch was creepy!