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To me, I know what to expect when I see a video box that has a woman on
the front cover wearing a bra and holding a machine gun, along with a
4-Star Rating from Joe Bob Briggs. It always amazes me that people rent
this stuff, apparently expecting Bergman or something, and THEN decide
they have to write negative reviews denouncing the overall silliness,
bad acting, cheap production values and amount of nudity and/or
violence. To me, HARD TO DIE delivered exactly what it promised on the
box...action, blood, babes, machine guns, Corman references (this is,
after all, a New Horizons video) and loads of cheesy fun.
Five scantily-clad young women (Gail Harris, Karen Mayo-Chandler, Deborah Dutch, Melissa Moore and Bridget Carney) are hired to work a temp inventory job at "Acme Lingerie" in a closed down for the night high-rise. They all get naked in a touching group shower scene that alludes to the powers of female bonding (HA!), try on the new Fall lineup of underwear, then accidentally open a "soul box" containing the spirit of Hockstetter, the notorious "sorority house killer" (last seen in Wynorski's similar SORORITY HOUSE MASSACRE 2). Someone in the group becomes possessed by the evil spirit and starts killing the others with a hook. Thankfully there's an armory shop in the same building, so the surviving girls get to defend themselves with high-powered machine guns! Big Peter Spellos returns from SHM2 as hulking Orville Ketchum, who is mistaken for the killer and outlives a dozen or so knees to the crotch, stabbings and gunshots (not to mention a fall off the roof!).
If you decide to take these zany proceedings seriously, that is your choice, but approached in the right state of mind, it's often hilarious. There's B-movie ingenuity at work here in this silly time-waster. It is action, nudity and in-joke packed and the ladies are all all pretty fun and energetic, so it's fine viewing for the audience intended. If you do not like these films, simply do yourself a favor and stop watching them.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
***SPOILERS, IF I CAN REMEMBER THEM***
A college roommate introduced me to this unforgettable little film, based on my love for laughably bad movies, and it did not disappoint. Purely a vehicle for slasher T&A, the movie makes no excuses and doesn't really take it itself all that seriously - what movie COULD, after having a man fall off a 15-story building and walk away?
To me, the shower scenes were just a softcore running gag, but I suppose some people could be turned-on, by them. It's just funny, for me, thinking about the writers' meeting that must have taken place ('Okay, the story's finished. Now, how do we get all of them into the shower?').
The highlight of the film, for me, was the irrepressible Orville coming back from one death after another, and not seeming to hold all the abuses against anyone, when it's over. Favorite scene: Orville pulls the mail spindle he has been stabbed with out of his heart, and uses a stapler to attach a bandage to his chest.
Worth the 99-cent rental fee.
Jim Wynorski's movies are, frankly, beyond criticism. They don't pretend to be anything other than what they are--an excuse to see beautiful women naked. That's it. Nothing else. No messages, no points to ponder, no pleas for peace, love and brotherhood. Just gorgeous women in varying and frequent stages of nudity. Wynorski, unlike many directors of this type of flick, actually has a sense of humor and salts his films liberally with it. This one is a bit different than usual, but not much. It has great looking women, nudity, guns, nudity, blood, nudity, a fat guy, nudity (not the fat guy's, thankfully), and, on top of all of that, nudity. If that's what you're looking for, this film delivers. The girls aren't good--or even competent--actresses, but then again, they're not supposed to be. They're there to giggle, look scared, run around in lingerie and take their clothes off, and they do all that quite well. You rent a Jim Wynorski movie pretty much knowing what you're going to get, and he seldom disappoints. Wynorski's films deliver what they promise--a characteristic many films nowadays fail to follow through on--and you can't ask for much more than that.
I simply love this film. The five main characters are just gorgeous. Sure this movie is badly acted, but its lots and lots of fun. Rent it and you'll see how the director exploits the babes' bodies. IT HAS LOTS of nudity, some blood, barely dressed chicks shooting each other, a lot of screaming and a really high sense of fun. I am proud to say I own a copy of this film and its one of my favorite slasher movies from the 90's.
This mountain of melted cheddar is dumb, dumb fun. Director/producer
Wynorski (who also helmed the raucously cheesy Chopping Mall) proves
himself to be the unsung B-movie hero. Wynorski's films win because he
creates schlock that believes in itself. This production doesn't have
an air of superiority. It carries its ludicrous premise with a
conspicuous joie de vivre and at a boisterous pace, all while avoiding
the doldrums of self-parody. Wynorski also succeeds in that his
intentionally funny and over-the-top ending is actually funny. He thus
accomplishes the rather difficult task of creating a film that people
will laugh at AND laugh with.
This film is actually the third entry in the Sorority House Massacre series, but stands just fine on its own (I've never seen the two preceding SHMs). It may be the best of the trilogy, downplaying the derivative slasher element that defined the first two films and instead taking an exuberant action-horror-comedy slant (the title, in case it wasn't obvious, is an obvious spoof of Die Hard). Just the image of our trashy-lingerie-wearing, bloody-breasted heroines brandishing automatic firearms is enough to alight the predilections of any cult film fan.
Jim Wynorski knows how to make a movie! He doesn't skip on the T&A and never takes his flicks too serious. If you're familiar with Wynorski you'll love Hard To Die, it has all the same elements of Sorority House Massacre II, pretty much the same story with the same girls running around in lingerie being stocked by the spirit of Hudsacker which has taken over a girls body. Our friend Orville is back too. He's trying to help the scantily clad girls, but they just keep killing him. And much like SHM II, it takes the time out to for the girls to all take showers, God bless you Jim please make more movies! Its perfect for movie night with your friends. Check it out!
I loved this movie. It was pure entertainment the entire time. This, and the three other movies Spellos starred in as Orville Ketchum, are some of the greatest films i have ever seen. Anyone who thinks otherwise, should go through the amount of punishment that Orville's body takes.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
ORVILLE KETCHUM WILL NOT DIE!!!!!!!
that is the overall theme of the unsung hero in this movie. ORVILLE KETCHUM RULES!!!!!!!!!! if you want to see plenty of hot chicks showering Goofy violence and the overall awesomeness of Orville check this movie out i first saw it on USA network years ago and have been wanting more Orville ever since Check it out!! and bring back Orville!!!!!! but what this movie is about is basically a serial killer chases around scantly clad women who have the weird urge to take showers while they are running from the killer. Orville is stabbed thrown off the building and other ways that would cause the demise of ordinary men. but not Orville. i think this movie is very underrated and wish that they would bring it back to put it on DVD. a famous quote from Me Ketchum throughout the film is "I Just Got To Tell You..." what does he have to tell the girls..... just watch to find out!!!
Hard to Die (1990)
** (out of 4)
Unofficial third film in the SORORITY HOUSE MASSACRE series features most of the same cast as the second film, although they're all in new roles (obviously). The story is pretty simple as five ladies dressed in lingerie's must fight off a killer while trapped inside a skyscraper. HARD TO DIE is a pretty silly and over-the-top film that is quite campy from the first scene to the last but what else would you expect from director Jim Wynorski? Like the previous film, this one here has a few confusing moments dealing with a completely different series. The Orville Ketchum (Peter Spellos) character from the previous film is introduced here as the "suspect" from the "previous events" but when he tells the story of what happened that night, instead of using clips from SORORITY HOUSE MASSACRE II they instead use clips from THE SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE. I'm not exactly sure why this was done as the story here perfectly concludes what happened at the end of the previous one but oh well. As for HARD TO DIE, it's a fairly entertaining movie as long as you don't take it too serious. The five actresses obviously all have big boobs and they're constantly shaking around throughout the 78-minute running time. The actresses are all good for what they're asked to do and this includes one of the most obvious "shower scenes" in the history of horror movies. Forrest J. Ackerman has a brief bit as does Wynorski who plays a porn director. Spellos is a lot of fun as the suspected killer who is constantly scaring the girls no matter what he's doing. There's a long-running gag dealing with him scaring the girls, which is pretty funny and we get an even longer running gag dealing with his constantly being shot, beaten, stabbed and yet he can never die. The gore level isn't all that high and you never really see any deaths on screen as we usually just hear a scream and then blood being splashed on the wall. The film eventually runs out of steam and especially when you consider this is pretty much just the previous movie only just set in a skyscraper. Either way, fans of trashy and silly direct-to-video movies should get a few laughs out of it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
You gotta respect low budget director Jim Wynorski: he never pretends that his films are more than what they are, and he knows how to deliver silliness and sleaze in equal measure. He demonstrates that with this dumb but fun melding of a "Die Hard" homage with a supernatural slasher flick. Five ultra sexy babes from a temp agency are hired to do the inventory for a lingerie company, but they'll have their mundane task interrupted by a killing spree while a storm rages outside their office building. Could the killer be the off kilter janitor (Peter Spellos) on the premises? Or is something else going on? "Hard to Die" comes off as a true mans' fantasy in that our protagonist babes are dressed skimpily and sexily right from the start, and they're a delight to behold, particularly when towards the end two of them are toting machine guns. Hotties and firearms DO always make for an irresistible combination. In addition, Wynorski shows early on that he will go for a cartoon like, tongue in cheek quality, and this extends to such things as sound effects, not to mention the fact that good old Orville the janitor proves to be completely impossible to kill. The acting is just right for this sort of thing. Gail Harris is delectable as Dawn, our plucky heroine, and Karen Mayo-Chandler, Deborah Dutch, Melissa Moore, and Bridget Carney round out the quintet of potential victims. Toni Naples, as a police detective, and Carolet Girard, as a porno actress, add even more eye candy to the proceedings. Wynorski works with regulars such as adorable Kelli Maroney as the porno wife and Monique Gabrielle, who's unrecognizable in a character role as the delivery woman. There's a sizable role for the legendary Forrest J. Ackerman of "Famous Monsters of Filmland" fame, and Wynorski himself appears, uncredited, as the porno director. Composer Chuck Cirino contributes a typically catchy electronic score, and Wynorskis' pacing is up to snuff; the movie clocks in at a fairly short 84 minutes long. It's got a couple of in-jokes, posters of the directors' past efforts, archive footage taken from "The Slumber Party Massacre", and is well worth watching for the generous screen time devoted to ogling the main actresses' assets. Seven out of 10.
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