Sunday, May 18, 2014

1982: The Rest

The stuff that lies in between...

Entertaining early release from New Line Cinema about a trio of lunatics who torment the new shrink at their mental home after their favorite doc leaves.  Good work from the cast, especially Jack Palance and Donald Pleasence.

Terrific stage performance from the comedy troupe that has several classic bits as well as a little new stuff.  Funny as one would expect and really, the last solid bit of business from Python as their last film, The Meaning of Life, ended up being rather underwhelming.

Okayish adaptation of the Craig Thomas novel with Clint as a Vietnam vet enlisted to steal a top secret super plane from the Russians.  Clint doing the spy thing doesn't quite work and the film only really gets going once he steals the plane but for the  most part, this one is entertaining enough.

Pretty decent slasher film with William Shatner in a supporting role and Michael Ironside in a great turn as the killer.

From British horror director Norman J. Warren comes this sort of blah riff on Alien, alternately known as Inseminoid and Horror Planet.  This time, a bunch of scientists examining some alien caves end up having to deal with some unfriendly beasties after one of their own is impregnated by a monster on the planet and begins running amok as a result of the alien's influence.  Too many characters you don't give a damn about (foreshadowing one of the problems Alien 3 had, funnily enough); a rather dull and vague plot and some bad acting overshadow the enjoyably sleazy, gory tone and interesting creature design.  It's probably a bad thing when the most sympathetic character is the chick who's been taken over by an alien force and is gruesomely killing and eating her fellow crew members.  To be fair, she is pretty cute.

Equally sleazy (though with better effects) is this creature feature from Howling II director Philippe Mora about a young man who finds himself turning into a giant were-cicada.  A dumb story (I know the brief plot I just gave makes that a shocking revelation) is really only helped by the graphic Tom Burman f/x including a nice transformation scene at the end.  I could really do without the rape aspect in the monster movies I've been watching as of late.  Interesting plot though with  a solid cast and exactly the sort of weird, cheesy style Mora brought to the second Howling movie, minus the weird editing.

Early Cannon slasher movie about a deranged nut going after a woman he had a crush on as a child. As cheesy as one would expect from a 1982 slasher movie, this doesn't quite have the same level of creativity that Halloween II brought to the "killer in a hospital" sub-genre, but it does have the wherewithal to lift one or two kills directly from that film.  Still, the gore is plentiful, there are some bizarre gags sprinkled here and there and if its sleaze and weirdness you want, this one is 90 minutes of it.

Now here is one that just misses being one of the greatest things ever made.  Chuck Norris is a small town sheriff who has to deal with an unstoppable psychopathic killer who has been given superhuman endurance through medical procedures.  It's a fantastic idea and while there are moments of blissful awesomeness, there just isn't enough horror or martial arts mayhem to satisfy either of the demographics the film was going after.  Still, it's got some great moments.  My favorites are the final showdown between Chuck and the killer and the first scene the killer is in before he becomes superhuman.  It's darkly hilarious to me as he's a boarder at the home of a harried mother whose kids are just annoying as all get out.  She's just as bad, not even noticing the man visibly having an internal meltdown right in front of her.  Pricelessly funny and you sort of wonder how her husband didn't off her way before the film's killer did.

Overly complex, sorta tiresome political thriller/farce that's never quite sure whether it wants to be serious or a dark comedy.  Sean Connery is fun as always as a hotshot TV newsman caught up in a conspiracy involving the death of a Middle Eastern king, terrorists, the president and a bunch of other players.  Still, as a semi-satire of the media and politics it is an interesting misfire.  Not a really good movie, however.

Chuck Norris' other release from 1982 is this pretty damn entertaining revenge flick starring Chuck as a former soldier whose adopted Chinese/Jewish family is threatened by some bad guys.  Fun action, an acceptably predictable script and a brisk pace make this one an easy weekend watch.

Coming soon: The Best of 1982

No comments:

Post a Comment

About Me

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