Sunday, October 4, 2015

Esoterica XII: Random acts of movie watching

Time for another round of general mayhem from yours truly.  Here some brief reviews of flicks I've seen recently that either don't really warrant the full treatment or about which I just have very little to say.

 Scarecrows is a nifty low budget horror movie about a bunch of thieves who end up stranded at an abandoned farm in the middle of nowhere when one of their own turns on them.  In addition to dealing with him and some local hostages, they also have to deal with bloodthirsty scarecrows who have a knack for gruesomely killing the hell out of anything in their area.  The film is pretty solid with some nice gore and interesting characters though for such a short film, it does sort of drag in one or two spots.  Still, its well worth checking out.

 The teaming of two legendary actors was the key selling point for this one but really, it just doesn't quite play.  Jack Nicholson is fine as a cattle rustler looking to earn a living as he fights against a rancher whose daughter he's fallen for but everything grinds to a halt whenever Marlon Brando shows up as a bounty hunter hired to kill Jack and his friends.  It's a real tour de force, completely bonkers and over the top and while it's not exactly right for the movie, it at least keeps it interesting.  Not often you see Marlon Brando sporting a thick Irish accent and a dress sinking a nasty looking weapon that is more or less a multi-bladed Frisbee from hell into Harry Dean Stanton's brain.

 If you like cheesy Italian horror movies (reading this sight, I'm betting you do), this is... Well, it's one of them.  A ham radio enthusiast and his girlfriend end encountering a ghost girl and her evil clown doll in a haunted house.  Some good kills and a reasonable amount of 80's cheese make this an okay viewing but really, you can do a hell of a lot better than this and probably should.  The Rifftrax on it is good, though.

 Been getting into Italian crime pictures and this one is pretty solid, though a little off in some areas.  Mario Adorf plays Luca, a small time pimp wrongfully suspected of stealing mob money (in fact, local crime boss Adolfo Celi is the real culprit) and he is targeted by two American hit men played by Henry Silva and Woody Strode.  His wife and daughter are killed which sends him on a roaring rampage of revenge and there are some nice action beats including a good foot chase.  Performances are solid with Adorf and Silva coming off best.  It's a tough, gritty meat and potatoes 70's action movie.

 Better is this offbeat action comedy starring Tomas Milian as tough guy cop Nico (a role he would reprise several times) who is out to bust a purse snatching ring led by Jack Palance.  Milian and Palance are fun in their roles; the action is pretty good and it's also nicely funny in places.

That's all for now, until next time.

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About Me

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