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What a howler!!
You will have to use a lot of "willing suspension of disbelief" to get through this turkey. Prequel shows two of the oldest "teenagers" you ever saw being stalked in the cleanest uninhabited castle on film. Rats are played by guinea pigs. The girls are tortured on the rack and killed but when their bodies are found on the castle grounds, town constable Barney Fife pronounces them dead of exposure. There is a deformed (bad Don Post mask) guy named Hugo who wonders around in a tattered three piece suit, chuckling a lot. His performance makes Tor Johnson seem like Dustin Hoffman. Add in an evil Indian (caucasian in brown greasepaint and turban), a nosy reporter who after giving the heroine a ride is ready to spend his life with her, and a housekeeper who goes by Elizabeth but everyone knows her as Betty!! The soundtrack is a mash-up of Addams Family organ and Tom & Jerry cartoon bassoon music. Where is the hidden diamond? Is Anna the reincarnation of Irene? Where is Irene's body after 20 years? Why is there a screen credit for "Trick Photography"? Watch this turkey and find out. A real howler!!!
Scared to Death (1947)
Complete idiocy and frustration
This film doesn't know whether to take itself seriously as a low low budget skid row mystery or as a Three Stooges film short. The comedy is low brow, slow paced and gets old rather quickly. Be prepared to give more than the usual "willing suspension of disbelief" to get thru the Holland tunnel sized holes in the plot. The largest hole is the pivotal role of Rene. If you have a DVD reacquaint yourself with the "woman" who appears early on in the film in a mock attempt to "blackmail" George Zucco-then compare "her" to Rene when exposed at the end of the film. Are we really to believe that this actor was in drag in the earlier appearance? Heck no. And that is only one of the staggering bits of ineptness rampant in this film. The annoying reporter and his dimwit girlfriend only add more frustration to this mess. Notice how everybody talks about it but nobody ever calls the police-excepting when the reporter says, "In the morning when the police get here..." Don't know why the police don't come out at night-maybe they have banker's hours? A real turkey. Not even so-bad-it's good! Skip it.
I'd read a lot about this film and was excited to view it. While not a complete turkey this one may not be worth your time or effort. The script seems hurried and incomplete and requires a incredible amount of willing suspension of disbelief. Could not understand how this average sized man with one machete and an old flintlock pistol could maintain control over several hearty sea dogs. Adding to this mystery is why they readily submit to his authority without much attempt to gain the upper hand. Also one wonders how this group continue to survive on a rather smallish island that looks pretty desolate-lots of rocks and cliffs and shore but not much vegetation and no animal life-other than fish. In retrospect the whole thing seems pretty laughable. The Iquana makeup effect looks like a B-movie rubber appliance and the much touted beheading scene was done with a coconut on a dummy's shoulders. Listen for the Three Stooges "ka-thunk" sound effect when the head hits the ground. Really bad stuff here. I give it 3 stars for the cinematography as there are some beautiful oceanic scenes found here. If you're curious about this film then at least you have some idea of what you're in for.
Bulldog Drummond's Bride (1939)
Out with a whimper
Most of the Bulldog Drummond films are slight on the mystery plots and were watchable mostly because of the supporting casts. Who will forget Tenny or Algy or the constantly frustrated Phyllis? You probably remember more about them then any of the plot lines they were involved in. This final Drummond film of the '30's is very tired. Way too much bumbling and comedy and not much drama ( and no mystery) at all. Watch for the scene where Phyllis and her aunt are shown listening to the radio waiting for a late BBC news broadcast.Minutes later when Bulldog arrives and inquires about the radio he is told that it was taken to the police station by Gaston. We saw that happen several scenes before. Talk about a lapse of continuity (or did some explanatory scene get excised for time?) A word of warning regarding the transfers available via Alpha Video. Almost to a title I noticed that the running time is less than what is stated on the package and the IMDb. Based upon content it looks like these may have been shaved to fit into a 60 minute time slot (allowing for commercials etc.) as these titles are several minutes shorter than listed. Most titles originally ran 55 to 67 minutes but all have been shortened to @ 48 to 51 minute run times.Makes me wonder.
Blood Harvest (1987)
A really bad movie
First off I only wanted to see this movie because of Tiny Tim's participation. Actually he is one of the better actors in the cast and that is saying something. There is so much wrong with this film that I can't begin to list everything. First, the female lead character is supposed to be a Wisconsin farm girl yet you can tell that English is not her first language. This calls for a huge suspension of disbelief right from the start. The movie uses the same gore effect-slicing the throat-over and over again. The appliance used is quite noticeable. The female lead spends 80% of her time in her boyfriend's shirt and a thong-even when people stop by to visit. There seems to be an abundance of peeping in windows-everybody including the sheriff does it. And even tho she fears for her life and is receiving threatening phone calls she never locks a door. Friends, sheriffs, murderers continually stroll in unannounced and it hardly phases her. She is a comely woman with legs that go all the way up and a nice rack. Her ample bosom is on display an inordinate amount of time even for an 80's era hack film like this. Every plot device is telegraphed and you've seen this a hundred times before and done much better. The identity of the killer isn't even hidden well-a stocking over the head-please give me a break. If you love Tiny you'll enjoy his performance but keep the fast forward button handy.I gave this film a extra point only because of the level of nudity, frequent and full frontal.
The Alley Tramp (1968)
A real howler with a moral to boot
You could do a lot worse with 69(!) minutes of your time. Here is a tight little potboiler of 16 year old Marie and her sexual awakening. Of course you have to forget that the actress is well above that age. Just compare her to the actress playing her mother and you will note that there can't be more than a couple years between them. This has the stilted acting (?),stationary camera shots (it occasionally pans from left to right) and awkward scene endings (the actors freeze and wait for a camera dissolve) that good ol' H. G. Lewis is known for. If you are part of the raincoat crowd you won't be seeing much boobage and buttsteak but what is shown is attractive. There is a shot of "mom's" prat when her lover scoops her up in the dining room to carry her upstairs. I don't know how they snuck that one in. A curiosity of the late 1960's for sure but this isn't art!!
Disturbing and gut-wrenching cinema
This one rates a 10 because it pulls no punches. The first time I saw this on a bootlegged VHS I couldn't believe what I was watching. This short film (35 minutes) plays out like a low budget documentary.If it weren't for the killings I would venture to say that most of what is being seen is actually happening. Lydia is up to the task (and genuinely seems surprised) when her client graphically porks her poop chute and later on "fingers" her with a gun barrel.I recommend that you purchase the R.Kern short film collection called "Hardcore". Along with "Fingered" there are so many more disturbing shorts to be found there. Be advised this film is not for everyone but if you like your art hot and nasty and shocking you can't go wrong here.
The Awakening (2010)
A real stinker not worth your time
Do not waste your time on this film for one good special effect (and even that is milked for all it is worth). Who would put their name on this film or even want to be remotely connected with it? It really is that bad. Pish poor in all departments, especially scripting and acting. It looks like one of those films where friends fill in for extras. The problem is the friends stick out like sore thumbs as soon as they realize the camera is running. I also gave this one a look based upon the 4 star rating on Netfilx. It took about 3 minutes to realize I had been misled. I stayed with the film for the duration but it only got worse and worse. And how about that "shock" ending?? Hee hee, who didn't see that one coming? Jeesh!
In Search of Lovecraft (2008)
Tedious and crappy
In the opening titles they give special credit to the special/makeup effects guy. WHY? The small amount of effects called for in this movie are all done pathetically bad. The acting is really atrocious, believe me it goes from bad to laughingly worse. The tedium in this script is unbearable,. It takes 50 minutes of running time to get to any action. When I say "action" I am not talking "Poltergeist" level action. Action is 5 minutes of the white witch mumbling nonsense syllables and Runic names while an empty rocking chair moves slowly back and forth. This movie is too tedious to recommend as a so-bad-it's-good movie. Avoid it. Really. Avoid it.
Red Hill (2010)
Too much suspension of disbelief required
I tried to like this film but it requires too much suspension of disbelief. First and foremost the lead character "Shayne" survives falling off a cliff and ends up with innumerable injuries. We see him profusely bleeding along the waistline. He ends up walking long distances while injured yet still has the ability to run like a rabbit when gunfire erupts. There also seems to be a problem with most of the armed men in this movie as they never take a shot at the heavy even when they have the element of surprise with them. One poor bastard even squeezes off 6 shots at a distance of 15 feet and never hits the heavy. Add to the mix that although this film happens in a small rural Aussie town, aside from the few principals, nobody else is ever seen. Keep in mind that automatic gun fire, car wrecks and explosions are occurring right in the middle of Main Street but nobody even goes to a window to see that is happening. There is talk of "a big storm brewing" but aside from the allegory to the story it fails to materialize. I guess all the town folk are hold up waiting for the big storm to blow over. Cliché after cliché leads to an ending you can see coming from the beginning of the film. A real letdown.