"The Last Shark"! (aka L' Ultimo Squalo") Oh please, not the last one, how about one more? Nope, today's film is 1981's "The Last Shark." Made by Italians and shot in Savannah and Malta, this is an over-the-top B movie. With entire lines and plot devices taken right out of "Jaws," we must give director Enzo G. Castellari credit for ripping off a great film instead of "Ordinary People" or "Looking for Mr. Goodbar." With lots of gore, bad dubbing, and a cheesy irrelevant musical score, you'll have fun with this one.
Saturday, December 3, 2016
Thursday, December 1, 2016
As the 1960s became history, the fight against illegal drug use shifted into high gear. Even before President Nixon created the DEA, a half human, half turkey being was already on the fight. Alcohol, pot, LSD, and even regular cigarettes...all of them...poison (according to our film today)! Perhaps the quirkiest anti-drug effort in U.S. history, 1972 "Blood Freak" seems to be a hippie response to a seedy side of hippy culture. Filled with pre-marital sex, nudity and gore, this low-budget goody earned an X rating from a very judgmental MPAA.
Wednesday, November 30, 2016
They're coming! No, not the refugees or disenfranchised citizens of a bordering nation. Exactly who they are is never made totally clear in 2016's "Border Patrol." This short film tackles deeper issues than who we are keeping out, or what the wall is there for. Yeah, there is a wall guarded by a border patrol unit here, but in this short film, the border may have already been crossed, and not the geographic one.
Border Patrol .
Border Patrol .
Tuesday, November 29, 2016
Poor Susan Blacklinie. She is always being put on the buffet for the animal kingdom. In "Jaws," she portrayed Chrissie. You remember Chrissie, the skinny-dipper who was eaten by the great white at the start of the film. Two years later, her fate was even more gruesome. In 1977's "Day of the Animals" she is mauled by wolves, picked apart by vultures, and then thrown of a cliff by those same birds. The pretty blonde also served as Linda Day George's stunt double in that same film.
Ahhh, where would a decade be without it's version of what will end the planet? Nuclear bombs kept people on edge in the 1950s, Communism in the 1960s, and today...global warming has us ready to relocate to Mars. But in the 1970s...come on now, any guesses? Mercury in our Tuna and aerosol sprays were gonna melt our cells and destroy the ozone layer. In "Day of the Animals," we are warned in a prologue that what we are about to see could happen if we keep using underarm antiperspirant. Unfortunately for some hikers, led by the hunk Steve (Christopher George), they will see these effects first hand. The increased radiation makes all the animals up in the California mountains attack. Mandy (Blacklinie) will be the first to go.
As Steve and his Indian (the 1970s term for Native American) Daniel (Michael Ansara) try to keep the hikers from panicking, a loose cannon ad-executive, Paul (Leslie Nielsen) goes as mad as the pursuing critters. Paul will turn into a homicidal rapist, as the snakes, tarantulas, birds, mountain lions, and wolves pursue. A cute side story occurs as Steve falls in love with his real life wife Linda Day George, who plays Terry. Uh oh, as our campers desperately try to make it back down the mountain to town, they are unaware that the animals have already eaten most of the citizens. With Steve's group dwindling, and the army on it's way, can our surviving hikers hold out?
What begins as a harmless made-for-TV looking PG flick, quickly turns into a gory and dark horror film. Some of the kills are horrifying and uncomfortable to watch. Will man emerge still atop the food chain? Will Mr. and Mrs. George think twice about a family pet? This film was decades ahead of the hit reality show "When Animals Attack," but the makers of that show clearly had this film in mind.
|The tasty Susan Blacklinie|
|Leslie Nielsen and Michael Ansara|
|Susan Day and Christopher George with Cujo|
Sunday, November 27, 2016
Set in Hawaii and shot in the Philippines, 1979's "Up From the Depths" is one of a billion "Jaws" rip-offs. IMDB bills this one as a horror/comedy, however I don't think comedy was a goal of the film makers. Directed by Charles B. Griffith, the overly stereotyped characters may indicate a comedy, but in fairness, perhaps the stereotypes are fair. For example...is it inaccurate to assume that ditzy swimsuit models are shallow and have inflated egos? With lots of nudity, gore, and a cool looking sea creature, this film is worth a watch.
Friday, November 25, 2016
Now for some serious sexploitation! 1973's "War Goddess" (aka "The Amazons'") is the story of the great Amazon nation. Made up wholly of beautiful babe warriors with no need for men. Biting commentary of the virtues of a feminine society, free of corruption by males? yeah, yeah...but also some great 1970s sexploitation featuring statuesque babes rubbing sacred oil all over their nude bodies and engaging in cat-fights and passionate lesbian love making.
Wednesday, November 23, 2016
"We want you to portray a Euro-skank who gets raped by a little kid and births alien eggs." The lovely and very classy Bond-girl Maryam d'Abo (The Living Daylights) had to begin her acting career somewhere. 1982's "Xtro" was just such a film. Yet the plight of her very unfortunate character sums up this cult horror favorite. When she heard that above line from director Harry Bromley Davenport, one wonders if she smiled and was aroused...or was she disgusted but figured she needed a paycheck to pay the rent?
Sam (Philip Sayer) is abducted by aliens while playing with his young son, Tony (Simon Nash). Tony's mom Rachel (Bernice Stegers) doesn't believe Tony and assumes Sam has just run off. Three years later, Rachel has moved to London with her son and moves in with a younger guy, Joe (Danny Brainin). Also living with them is Analise (d'Abo), a very frisky nanny who likes to have pre-marital sex. Uh oh...Sam returns with no memory of the past three years. What a return it is. A sultry babe is raped by a monster and minutes later gives birth to Sam. After birth, Sam returns to Rachel. At first he and Rachel appear to be falling back in love, much to Joe's consternation. But is this Sam? He begins exhibiting weird behavior and it becomes apparent he is actually an alien looking to reclaim his son...and much more.
Sam, or whatever Sam is now, has a plan which involves his son Tony and Analise's womb. As Analise continues to have pre-marital sex, the viewer realizes her fate will be one worse than death. Joe and Rachel remain ignorant to what Sam has become, but Tony is given some very alien powers, including the ability to make each one of his toys a homicidal weapon. As Tony's toys inflict much carnage, the boy has a surprise for the nubile Analise. What happens to Analise will be one of the most memorable scenes from 1980s horror. What are Sam's goals? Will Tony also become a monster? Is Analise's fate the best argument against pre-marital sex?
Playful and quirky, "Xtro" is also total horror. As the final credits roll, viewers will be in shock at what just unfolded. One wonders if Ms. d'Abo was ever told that her role in "Xtro" would be a stepping stone to becoming a Bond-girl. Made in England, "Xtro" probably crossed many lines into the taboo, but that is what hardcore horror fans prefer.
|Back to Earth|
|Analise and cocoon|