Tuesday, June 5, 2012

VHS Memories XXIX: Vidmark Home Entertainment

Vidmark started in 1984 and has been a very consistent distributor of various horror, sci-fi and action movies.  They still exist to an extent, if you consider having your library bought by Lionsgate and locked in a vault to be existing.  Let's take a look...

What better way to start than this classic Peter Jackson zombie comedy.  Outrageously gory, hilarious, this is one of the few movies I can honestly say makes me feel a bit nauseous every time I watch it.  An absolute classic.

 On the other end of the spectrum is this utterly predictable movie starring Warwick Davis as the title character.  Incredibly, this spawned five sequels and is set to be remade by WWE Films.  Outside of Davis' enthusiastic performance, the only noteworthy thing about the movie is that it provided an early role for Jennifer Aniston.

 Better is the sequel (though that's really not saying a lot) as David turns in another energetic, pun-laden bit of acting that really makes me wish he was cast as Dr. Loveless in that crappy Wild Wild West film from 1999.  Sure it might not have saved the film but at least it would be entertaining as hell!

 Vidmark also put out the first UFC show and continued distributing them up until 2001 when they were absorbed by Lionsgate.
 This is an utterly bizarre, wild movie that combines aliens and Bigfoot.  From what I've read, it's either one of those movies that is just so incredibly bad that it ends up being great, or just a colossal waste of time.

One of the major traits of mid-90's Vidmark was their tendency to glom onto any franchise they could and milk it like the world's largest cow.  They did it with their own Leprechaun franchise and they also brought the Amityville Horror franchise back from the dead for several sequels starting with part 4 and going all the way to part 8.
 Impressive, really.

 Not much more to say.  If you must know the whole damn story, the entire series has been covered by Liz over at And You Call Yourself A Scientist!.

 Also riding the crap wagon was this lousy riff on Child's Play only this time the doll gets a gender change.  All I can say is that the fact that this made the cover of Fangoria really shows how bad a year for horror 1991 was.

 Here's one of their more notorious releases, a nasty slasher from Lucio Fulci that's mainly gore and little else.  I don't even want to think about it any more.

 Here's an interesting find: A 1985 TV movie about a couple of cops (Yaphet Kotto and Alex Rocco) and DA (James Woods) who try to solve the brutal murders of police officers.  Oddly enough, the cover makes it look like a standard cop thriller and somehow, this CBS made-for-TV movie managed to score an R rating.  Pam Grier also has a supporting role.

 This is an interesting case as it was made in 1989 but sadly didn't see release until two years later.  Julian Sands is very good as the title character, an evil warlock awakened and freed after several hundred years of captivity who wants to bring about the end of the world.  It's surprisingly good with good direction from Steve Miner, some nice f/x and a nice second lead role for Richard Grant as the warlock's nemesis who travels through time to kick his ass...which definitely qualifies as a personal vendetta, I think.  It's definitely one to check out.

We end things with this, one of the greatest bad movies I have ever had the pleasure of viewing and owning.  I wrote about it for The Agony Booth a few years ago and I can safely say it is the greatest thing you will ever see.  Michael Biehn stars as a troubled con artist who gets involved with his uncle, played by James Coburn, another con man.  Charlie Sheen pops up briefly but the real highlight is the gonzo, kabuki-esque performance Nicolas Cage gives as one of Coburn's employees.  It really has to be seen to be believed.  Buy this.

1 comment:

  1. Love me some Vidmark!

    Deadfall contains Nicolas Cage's best performance! He looks like an insane orange Mexican. Haha.

    Also totally agree about Badge Of The Assassin. Solid drama-thriller.

    ReplyDelete

About Me

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