Sunday, February 5, 2012

VHS Memories XX: Cornucopia Grab Bag 4

Since this is the twentieth VHS Memories post, we'll be going into a little more detail on some of these than usual here.  Let the recall begin!

I saw this way back when it came out on video.  Remember when Lou Diamond Philips actually had a career?  This is lame supernatural thriller mixed with some film noir that features Lou as a detective going after a killer played by Jeff Kober.  It really says something that Wes Craven's Shocker is a better movie than this.

This is a a great film for several reasons/  First off, it's an amazingly clever parody of 70's black cinema with a funny script, funny performances and a fantastic pace.  The other reason is this: It is the last time that a member of the Wayans family was genuinely funny.  Good flick, check it out.

Maybe the worst of the Christopher Lee Dracula movies, this is an inexplicably unpleasant, bloody yet at the same time remarkably dull affair that for some reason has Dracula stab one of his servants to death and brand another with a hot iron (he really is more of a sadistic ass in this one than a vampire).  Lee has maybe one or two good moments but for the most part, the film is just awful.

 This is a neat-sounding anthology film that I'm sure is nowhere near as good as the ad makes it look.

Ah, another childhood favorite.  I think I must have seen this at my buddy's house at least ten times when I was a kid.  Reb Brown is Yor, a hunter from the future (synergy with the title, a very important part of film making, folks) and this is one of the most enjoyable bad movies ever made.  An Italian production, this was originally a made-for-tv mini-series that was cut down for theatrical release.  Classic stuff.

This one is just insane sounding.  Phyllis Diller as a morgue attendant, giant mutant poodles, this is one that I will always kick myself for not grabbing the one time I saw it at the video store.

This is a solid little WWII action flick out of Australia starring Mel Gibson before he became impossible to like, John Phillip Law before Space Mutiny and Sam Neill before...Well, before he had done anything else, really.  Haven't seen this in a while but I remember it being pretty damn enjoyable, though to be fair I was pretty easy to please at the time I first saw it.

If anything good can be said to have come out of the recent Fright Night remake, at the very least it makes me appreciate Fright Night Part II for what it is.  While the sequel to the 1985 movie is not quite up to the level the first film reached, it certainly delivers on the f/x front.  Taking the rather annoying track of "the hero has recovered from the first film and now is an ass who doesn't believe it really happened", it nevertheless delivers a sexy performance from Julie Carmen as the main vampire, some amusing moments from Jonathan Gries as a werewolf and b-movie fave Brian Thompson as a bug eating ghoul.  It's not that bad, all things considered.

Here's a fun British chiller starring Donald Pleasence as a mad scientist who has been cross-breeding humans with plants for...Well, some reason.  Hell, I don't know.  At any rate, he sells the failed experiments tp a local freak show and of course, as tends to happen in these movies, the tables are turned on him at the end.  Pleasence is the best thing in the movie which is highlighted by a rather cheesy, silly creation known as the Venus Flytrap Man.  All in all, a perfectly acceptable b-movie.

This played in heavy rotation on HBO when I was a kid so I think I have probably seen at least parts of it seven or eight times.  Peter and David Paul (known as The Barbarian Brothers) are huge, muscle bound twins who made several movies together in the 80's, this being one of their worst.  They play truck drivers who try to help out a runaway teen who has invented a machine that can turn any electric device on or off.  Martin Mull is on hand as a scientist trying to sell it and Richard Moll puts in a supporting role as the twins' boss.  It's an agreeably stupid comedy that is bad, but essentially harmless.

In spite of the title and cover that make it look like a monster movie or something, this is actually a twisted little slasher movie from 1982 that was originally called Butcher, Baker, Nightmare Maker.  It stars Bo Svenson as an idiotic, racist cop who tries to frame a young man for a murder he is sure was a result of a gay love triangle when in fact the lad's aunt, played by Susan Tyrell is the real culprit.  There's a cornucopia of sleaze in here with racism, homophobia, incest, murder, it's a really twisted movie, this one.

Like Leviathan, this is one of the many underwater horror movies released in 1989.  Directed by Friday the 13th's Sean S. Cunningham, it sports a decent (if woefully underused) monster designed by Mark Shostrom but little else.  The story is pretty much the same as Leviathan only minus the corporate greed angle and the cast, with the exception of Miguel Ferrer, is rather bland and unmemorable.  Overall, not a great movie.

And we end things with one of the most amazingly dumb, yet still entertaining things to come out of New World Pictures.  Hell Comes to Frogtown stars pro wrestler Rowdy Roddy Piper (a point in its favor already) as Sam Hell, the last fertile man on the planet who is forced to rescue some kidnapped women from mutant frogs in a post-apocalyptic wasteland.  Sybil Danning and William Smith have supporting roles and while the acting is terrible, the script is poor, the effects are lousy and the comedy is weak, this is somehow an entertaining piece of crap.

1 comment:

  1. Always wanted to see Think Big. Love the Barbarian Brothers.

    The First Power is a lot of fun. Lou Diamond Phillips at his best.

    Also I'm Gonna Git You Sucka is a comedy classic: "Any Ghetto USA" and the bit when Isaac Hayes shoots himself a million times are hilarious.

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About Me

I've been a huge fan of action, horror and comedy for as long as I can remember.