Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Carnival of Blood, Coney Island Carnage

As with all films which gained popularity at the drive-in, 1970's "Carnival of Blood" is flawed. Sure, some of the scenes go on too long, and the film quality is grainy, etc.  However, our feature today is better than anything Harrison Ford has done in 30 years, and the gore is quite graphic. Oh yes, an interesting note, in addition to being filmed at the amusement park in Coney Island, this is the screen debut of Burt Young ("Rocky").
Tom and Gimpy
Oh so sweet, Dan (Martin Barolsky), an assistant DA, proposes to the nubile and quite shapely Laura (Judith Resnick). At the same time, the horror begins at Coney Island. The beautiful Claire (Linda Kurtz) is decapitated on a house of horrors ride. No clues. No witnesses. Dan, a real jerk, cancels his celebration date with Laura in order to take her to Coney Island to investigate the murder...the case is assigned to him in the prosecutor's office.  Distraught at the un-romantic nature of this date, Laura wants to break off the engagement.  Enter Tom (Earle Edgerton). Tom mans a booth at Coney Island and convinces Laura to change her attitude. Actually, lots of passionate pre-marital sex with Dan also helps her attitude adjustment. Tom loves giving teddy bears out to people who win his dart game.  Interesting point however, as the body count increases, all the victims were obnoxious to him just before their demise.
Dan looks for clues
Then there is Gimpy (Young). A hunchback with a deformed face, he helps Tom run his booth.  He is very antagonistic to customers, and mentally unbalanced.  Then a beautiful young lady is gutted underneath the pier, and her entrails are pulled out.  No spoilers here, but the next murder will be even gorier.  As Laura and Dan seem to make-up, Dan continues to investigate the homicides.  Feeling neglected, Tom and Gimpy take pity on her and keep giving her teddy bears.  Uh oh, the beautiful blonde Laura seems to have drawn the attention of the maniac.
Tom consoles Laura
Will Laura ditch her un-romantic fiance in favor of a doctor?  Is our hunchback too easy of a suspect? How about Tom? Why is he so interested in comforting a babe way out of his league? The gore is intense, and the acting is just fine.  Burt Young is great and it is easy to see why he was cast in "Rocky," a few years later.  Drive-in horror fans will want to catch this grainy and raw horror/exploitation film.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Terror at Baxter U, Spartans Dismembered

Lots of great looking college kids in much peril from a bloodsucking beast! Yep...a plot line that can't fail. 2003's "Terror at Baxter U" should have been titled "Nubile Michigan State University Babes and Hunks Torn to Pieces." Okay, so my title is a bit contrived, but our feature today was made at Michigan State and Psi Upsilon Fraternity. Whatever virtues possessed by Ohio State and the University of Michigan and other Big 10 institutions, the kudos go to Michigan State for releasing a slasher film filled with blood spatter and decapitations.
Mary Lewis before being gutted
As our film begins two very hot Michigan State University students (Mary Lewis and Daniel Linton)  are engaging in pre-marital sex. A monster-thing intrudes, pulls apart the male and chases the coed, clad in intimate undies, through the anthropology building. As our nubile coed races through the corridors, our filmmakers seem to be saying "Hey Ohio State, we have hotter chicks than you do!" She'll then be decapitated and have her blood drained.  The cops, Lt. Emil Klinger (Ron Blankenhorn) and Detective Barbara McIntosh (Amy Vanden Berghe) respond. Uh oh, Lt. Emil finds an ancient Mexican (Aztec) amulet at the crime scene suggusting these killings may have been some sort of ritualistic sacrifice...after all, this is Michigan State.
Mary Lewis after being gutted
Lt. Emil connects these killings to similar ones that befell MSU 25 years earlier. Suspects? Oh yes, Professor Cassandra Dregstone (Janet Lockwood).  Dregstone has some connection to ancient Aztec rituals and tries to recruit nubile babes to participate in them.  The  slow and elderly Professor Moxie (Bill Vincent) suspects Dregstone and recruits his anthropology class to get to the bottom of this bloody mystery.  Uh oh, more great looking students get gutted and drained of blood and now the lovely Detective McIntosh gets an ax buried in her skull. As more nubile coeds and hunk underclassmen are shredded, Dregstone seems to be preparing for some grand Aztec ritual which will put the entire Big 10 in peril.
Professor Moxie and his class
Does Michigan State University have the hottest student body in the Big 10? Is the University of Michigan's refusal to counter this film an admission to that very point? Is there any stopping some demented Aztec deity from being resurrected in East Lansing, Michigan?  However amateurish this film class project is, the questions it poses are important and worth extensive debate. Directed by Jeff Burton, see "Terror at Baxter U," available on YouTube.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Bloody Reunion, South Korean Torture Porn

Torture porn from South Korea? So it would appear, but appearances can be misleading. So how is a beautiful woman having her eyelids stapled and her fiance forced to swallow dozens of razor blades not torture porn? Today we look at 2006's "Bloody Reunion," directed by Dae-wung Lim.  A word of warming for all you teachers out there...you better be perfect because all the blame will head your way. Confused? That's appropriate.
Suffering from a terminal illness Miss Park (Mi-hee Oh) will die soon. Her former student, Mi-Ja (Yeong-hie Seo) is now her beautiful nurse. Sensing her patient is close to death, Mi-Ja arranges a reunion of Miss Park's last class. 7th graders from 15 years ago will now convene at Park's house on the shore for a remembrance of happier times. Oh yes, Miss Park gave birth to a deformed child who doesn't appear to be around anymore. The students arrive and at first they appear to be full of affection and admiration for their former teacher.
Uh oh, something is not as it seems. We learn each student was emotionally crushed by Miss Park and in fact, hate her guts. Double uh oh...one by one each student is grabbed, tied up, and tortured unmercifully to death. The blood flows, and razors, bugs, and staples seem to be the villains tools of preference. Who is doing all this awful stuff? Could it be Miss Park, after all, she tormented the kids 15 years ago? Wait, wasn't there a deformed son? Where is he? Or is the answer more ominous and surprising?
Gory and heartbreaking, "Bloody Reunion" will leave you needing a few stiff adult beverages. The answer to the mystery is almost as disgusting as what the fiend did to the victims.  The cast is great looking, and resemble a flight crew of a Korean Airlines plane. Not the feel good movie of the 21st century, but horror film fans will love this gore-fest and relish in the surprise, though very macabre, ending.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Audition, Not for the Squeamish!

Not for the squeamish? Ha! That's an understatement! In what may be Harvey Weinstein's biggest nightmare, from Japan, we have 1999's "Audition." There is the final 30 minutes of this film, which I will keep quiet about, as even the description isn't for the squeamish. Remember, all you lonely and vulnerable souls out there, this film is a warning. When the heart speaks, the brain turns to peanut butter. Perhaps the more seasoned among you may take "Audition" (directed by Takashi Miike) as a metaphor for what 'the perfect gal' is likely to turn into once you get to know her.
Shigeharu (Ryo Ishbashi) is a lonely widow yearning for female companionship. Since his wife's demise seven years previous, he has put together a successful talent agency. His friend and partner, Yasuhisa (Jun Kunimura) suggests a phony audition. A casting call for a new TV show, but in reality, this audition will allow Shigeharu to view dozens of Japanese beauties and select one. In short, he selects Asami (Eihi Shiini). Mysterious, beautiful, and apparently in need of someone like Shigeharu. Ignoring red flags that come to light in a cursory background check, he dates her and the two get very serious.
Now the second half of the film. Yes Asami is beautiful and of course, mysterious. Okay, we see her sanity is...well...perhaps non-existent. Unfortunately for Shigeharu, he learns this too late, probably because his hormones over-ruled his brain! What we, and Shigeharu find out about Asami is that she is...a demented and sadistic monster.  All you divorced guys out there, I don't want to hear it! Too late. What follows...oops, I promised I wouldn't go into that. Suffice it to say, "Audition" may have been the inspiration for "American Mary." Syringes, pins, dissection, torture, and amputation will grace the final half hour of "Audition."
I have always warned my family that anyone can appear sane and normal for a few days.  Give it a week, and watch out. Like Shigeharu, by the time a week has passed, phone numbers have been exchanged and a symbiotic relationship has seized you. If you dare, take a look at "Audition." You have been warned. All you guys approaching middle-age, heed this film as a warning. When a beautiful 24 year old beauty seems intrigued by you, she may really only be intrigued by your internal organs.

Monday, October 23, 2017

The Burning Dead, Lava Oozing Zombies

Okay, our film today has received a 2.2/10 rating on IMDB.  Perfect for this blog. How can a film containing lava spewing zombies, a volcano that spits out those zombies, and lots of intestine and internal organ dismemberment be bad?  Oh yes, it also has Danny Trejo!  Directed by Rene Perez, let us take a look at the much maligned "The Burning Dead."
The soon to be eaten nude blogger
As the film begins it is 1846 and cannibals (...or zombies) are finishing off the Donner Party. A volcano erupts swallowing all the zombies in a river of lava. Fast forward to today, a volcano is about to erupt and a California mountain town needs to be evacuated. The handsome, and newly single Sheriff Denton (Thomas Downey) comes to help the single mom Mindy (Moniqua Plante) box up her belongings, The two are sweet on each other. The volcano erupts spewing out lava-oozing zombies. Our first victim will be a young damsel (Jenny Lin) who is in the mountains snapping nude pictures of herself. She'll be eaten in an elongated scene in which we see the nude blog-model's internal organs eaten. As more lava-spewing fiends are ejected from the volcano, Denton races back up the mountain to rescue his new GF Mindy and her daughter Nicole (Nicole Roberts).
The Donner Pass horror
Now trapped up the mountain, the zombies converge on our survivors which also include Nicole's beau, grandfather Old Ben (Robert F. Lyons), and a sultry geologist Eve (Julie Lehman). They'll be attacked and soon find out that head-shots don't work on these walkers. As they flee from these monsters, we are given a clue as to how the living may prevail. An old Cherokee called Night Wolf (Danny Trejo) knows about the Curse of Donner Pass, and perhaps how to break it.
Lava spitting fiend
Will Night Wolf be able to end this reign of terror? Will the Sheriff and Mindy be able to swap some spit with Nicole and her boy toy nearby? Will we get to see the pictures of the nude blogger before she was eaten, or will the lava claim that treasure forever?  Cannibals, zombies, and Danny Trejo! Sure, the elite film critics may give this a 2.2/10 rating, but fans of this blog know better. Enjoy 2015's "The Burning Dead."

Saturday, October 21, 2017

The Sinful Dwarf, Sex Slaves and a Midget

A faded and disfigured canteen singer performing "Chu Chu Bamba." A demented and perverted dwarf. Three nubile beauties turned into sex slaves. From Denmark we take a look at 1973's "The Sinful Dwarf." Warning, this film has no socially redeeming value and a mention of it in polite company will relegate you to an outcast to be avoided at all costs.  So as we proceed...you have been warned.
As our story begins, Olaf (Torben Bille), a weird dwarf, lures a Danish beauty (Jeanette Marsden) to his rooming house where he clubs her unmercifully, addicts her to heroine, tortures her, strips her, and turns her into a sex slave. Nothing unusual here for Olaf and his mom, Lila (Clara Keller) the scarred has-been nightclub performer. Their new gig? After addicting girls to heroine, they charge perverted guys to go up and do whatever they want to them. Rape, whippings, or other tortures are the most popular pleasures. After a few doses of the narcotic, the gals are reduced to drooling drones only too happy to please Olaf and Lila.
Desperate for a cheap room, the very sultry Mary (Anne Sparrow) and her husband Peter (Tony Eades) arrive at the boarding house. After taking a gander at Mary, and seeing her potential, Lila rents them a room. Olaf is happy as he peeks through a peep-hole at the naked Mary, especially when she is having marital sex with Peter. As Olaf and Lila wait for a chance to turn Mary into an addicted sex-slave, we are treated to Lila's nightclub act covering up the moans and screams of the three existing slaves. The torture porn (a literal in this film) is overwhelming and gratuitous, and naive Mary seems no match for the evil that is about to enslave her.
Will Mary emerge from this nightmare? What of the fate of the three existing slaves? Has Torben Bille's performance as the fiendish Olaf typecast dwarfs in Hollywood to weird miscreants? This is a dirty and violent one and after seeing it, you might want a very long shower. Directed by Eduardo Fuller, for some extreme sexploitation, see "The Sinful Dwarf" at your own peril.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

The Living Dead Girl, Lesbian Vampire and Toxic Waste

Jean Rollin (who died in 2010) finished his film making career creating porn films. Before that, the French director made fantasy/horror movies featuring lesbian eroticism, vampires, and madness. Hence 1982's "The Living Dead Girl" (aka "La Morte Vivante"). I don't believe Mr. Rollin was influenced by Japanese horror, however, the spurting blood in this film will remind you of those Asian gore-fests.
An unfortunate grave robber
Two French schmucks seeking to get rid of some toxic waste decide to kill two birds with one stone. They break into the spacious crypt at the Castle Valmont, deposit their barrels of radioactive goo, and pry open the coffin of Catherine Valmont (Francoise Blanchard) and steal her jewelry. Earthquake! The barrels fall and spill their toxic waste creating fumes that reanimate Catherine. Catherine, a blonde beauty returns as a vampire-like vixen with sharp finger nails. She punctures out the eyes of her would be necrophiliac grave-robber and her blood drinking rampage begins. The zombie-like Catherine wanders out of the crypt and goes upstairs into the Valmont Castle where she begins remembering her lesbian lover, Helene (Marina Pierro).
Helene and Catherine
The castle is on the market so a sultry realtor and her lover stop by for pre-marital sex. Big mistake, as the two are in the throes of intercourse, Catherine arrives sending the blood of the lovers spurting. Helene figures out that Catherine is back and races to the castle. The two beautiful lovers have obstacles to overcome, such as Catherine only dines on human blood in her resurrected state. Helene lures pretty French women to the castle and Catherine feasts on them. Uh oh, an American photographer, Barbara (Carina Barone) shoots a picture of Catherine from a distance and returns to the castle to investigate.  Helene realizes the world is getting curious about reports of Catherine coming back from the dead. Catherine's kills are getting more graphic as now she punctures arteries and rips guts out of formerly stunning French women.
An over-the-top ending
What does Helene have in store for Catherine's future? Will the two be lovers again? Is Catherine's new appetite for human blood and guts an ominous omen for Helene's desire to be intimate with the resurrected beauty? Erotic and very gory, Jean Rollin's "The Living Dead Girl" will arouse you and turn yoiur stomach at the same time. Oh yes, be warned, the last 15 minutes will have you diverting your eyes in horror and disgust.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Super Babes, Heroines Turned to Damsels

You have to love the folks at Secret Identity Films. Fans of this blog have read about their masterpieces featuring beautiful super-heroines in tight shiny costumes and hooker boots. These heroines usually end up abducted, chloroformed, beaten, tortured, humiliated, stripped and raped (by villain and villainess). Sometimes they survive the end of the films, but always soiled and subdued. Hence 2014's anthology film, "Super Babes."
In an adrenaline boost to the fetishes of Japanese men, let us look at the trio of tales in this anthology. "Cosmic Girl: Battle Arena" features Alisha Adams as the sultry Cosmic Girl. Clad in a tight, white costume (which will be torn to pieces), she falls into a trap and now is a prisoner of Lady Roulette. The beautiful Lady Roulette abducts super heroines to fight in her on-line TV show 'Meta-Battle." Cosmic Girl will have to fight an opponent three times her size, Titanium Man. As Lady Roulette has stripped Cosmic Girl of most of her powers, Cosmic Girl will have quite a humiliating time of her contest.  Will she be able to regain her powers and fight back against her abductor?
Cosmic Girl in distress
Next, "Black Diamond: Search for the Soul Taker" features Maddie as Black Diamond. She has infiltrated the warehouse of an evil organization in search of a weapon that steals souls. She'll be grabbed, groped, spanked, and have her costume ripped apart in the process. She'll find the soul taker, but her nemesis has plans for her that will violate her and leave her weak and vulnerable. Can our heroine fight back? Finally, CJ the Model in the title role in "Live Wire." The evil Queen Zentra (Doxy Love) has come to conquer the Earth.  Live Wire, in a tight green leotard and the aforementioned hooker boots attempts to stop her. Zentra is smart and subdues Live Wire. Zentra plans on turning Live Wire into one of her slaves, and to do that, must rape her. She and her evil henchman, Brute, will take turns and Live Wire must resist or be their slave for eternity.
Queen Zentra rapes Live Wire
The three heroines in "Super Babes" will get their lunch handed to them, big time. They will be spanked, stripped, and enslaved. Not all of them, if any, will prevail, but defeated super-heroines are a trademark of Secret Identity Films. Why are these films so appealing? I'm not even going to touch that one. Cheesy, and possessing the morals and tenets of 1970s exploitation films, "Super Babes" is infinitely more entertaining than the preachy, modern day superhero offerings.
For more on Secret Identity Films, click the below links to three other films reviewed on this blog:
Heroines of S.W.O.R.D.
Agents of P.O.W.E.R.
Heroines of F.U.R.Y.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Blood Tracks, Cannibals vs. Rock Band

Actually, cannibals versus a rock band and the nude skank groupies who hang with them. A slasher film from Sweden, and a bloody one at that, 1985's "Blood Tracks."  A Swedish adage dating back to Viking times is loosely translated to English as "...the more naked you are, the gorier your demise." You would think with all that snow in Sweden, clothes wouldn't be shed as freely as they are in the States...think again!
A rock band (played by the Swedish band 'Easy Action') heads into the mountains to shoot a music video. As luck would have it, the manager, Bob (Michael Fitzpatrick), finds an abandoned and condemned factory there. Bob makes the executive decision to shoot much of the video there. Accompanying the band is a bevy of, mostly nude, skanks who will pose in the snow...mostly nude. Uh oh, abandoned factories are never really abandoned in slasher films. Living in the bowels of the machinery is a family of cannibals, hidden from society for decades.
Suzie (Naomi Kaneda) is the lead singer and she gets sweet on her guide/gofer John (Jeff Harding). As an avalanche cuts this crew off from civilization, the rock band retreats to a neighboring cabin for lots of pre-marital sex. A few of the crew wander into the factory to get some shots, but they'll be decapitated, impaled, axed, burned, and impaled some more. The offending cannibal family then sends its males to the cabin for some gory mayhem and to collect the nubile skanks who might serve their mating needs. As the nubile babes are chained to a bed in preparation for mating rituals, the few survivors band together and follow the fiends into the factory where a bloody war will decide the fate of cannibal and skank alike.
What is the backstory of our hungry and horny cannibal clan? Did this film prevent Easy Action from surpassing ABBA as Sweden's most popular band? After the release of "Blood Tracks" in 1985, for the first time in centuries, Swedes began talking about the cannibalism that has cursed them since the 11th century. For some gratuitous cheesecake and gore, enjoy "Blood Tracks,"directed by Mats Helge Olsson.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Varan the Unbelievable, A Speed Bump in Japan's Post War Reconstruction

Just what is "Varan the Unbelievable"?  This is a difficult question as 1962's "Varan the Unbelievable" is about Obaki the devil monster. Directed by Ishiro Honda ("Godzilla"), but since Japan lost World War 2, and history is written by the victors, Jerry A. Baerwitz is credited with directing this film. Perhaps this film is a bargain basement version of "Godzilla," but don't fret...its still a terrific Japanese monster movie with a big dinosaur-thing marauding through island villages and the Japanese military.
General Douglas MacArthur, WW2 hero, was sent to Tokyo to supervise the reconstruction of Japan. He's not in this film. We get Commander James Bradley (Myron Healy) who supervised food contracts during the war. He is sent to a remote island to implement his new invention...a water purification system. Joining him is Anna (Tsuruko Kobayashi), his sultry Japanese bride. After ticking off the natives and using the Japanese army as crossing guards, Commander Bradley sets loose his experiment on a salt-lake on the island. It fails! You might say "EPIC FAIL," as it does drive Obaki the devil monster out of the depths.
Obaki is ticked. Faster than you can say "Sayanora," the poor-man's Godzilla destroys all the peaceful villages on the island and nearly eats Anna and Bradley. Instead of rescuing villagers, the air force is dispatched to save Anna and Bradley, allowing the villagers to be crushed by Obaki. Obaki isn't done as Japan is a very large country with many airports and cities. Battling the navy and more jet fighters, Obaki heads to mainland Japan.
Now that Obaki is threatening politically sophisticated city-folk, will the military find an urgency to stop it?  Would the air force have rescued Bradley and Anna if Anna was a homely Geisha-reject? Just how do you get "Varan the Unbelievable" from "Obaki the Devil Monster"? Okay, not "Godzilla," but definitely a pleasing monster movie.  Tokyo got General MacArthur and roared back after the war ended. The small remote island in this film got Commander Bradley and got wiped out. Even in post-war Japan, political influence eludes the common man.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Razortooth, Hungry Eel

After feasting on an appetizer of 'gator bites at a restaurant called The Magic of New Orleans, I came up with the law of the swamp. EAT IT BEFORE IT EATS YOU! This maxim stayed with me at a Los Angeles restaurant last year when I ate eel. 2007's "Razortooth" hammers this logic home as it shows us the danger of not eating our slithery friends before they become mutated and hungry.
Two escaped convicts are fleeing through the swamp and pursued by a dozen shotgun wielding cops. Lucky for them, a giant mutated eel eats the pursuing men in blue. The toothy creature continues its swamp buffet leaving half eaten unfortunates littering the ecosystem. Enter a goofy, harmonica wielding, animal control officer named Delmar (Doug Swander). Also enter his ex-wife Ruth (Kathleen LaGue), who is also the sheriff. She is on the hunt for the two escapees and he is hunting something that's eating dogs, diner patrons, a naked babe in a sorority house, and fishermen. Soon the two realize they are hunting the same foe and celebrate this point by having sex. Oh yes, a bunch of youths hit the river/swamp for a canoe regatta...they'll all be eaten.
As Delmar and Ruth finish up carnal relations, they meet up with Dr. Abramson (Simon Page), the mad-scientist that created the eel-monster. As the fiend eats Abramson's interns, except for the full figured Holly (Kate Gerston), he joins the hunt. Hunting parties will be eaten leaving a small group to figure out how to kill the elusive, but deadly eel. Mercifully, Delmar puts down his harmonica and looks toward spears, grenades, guns, and toxins...this really turns Ruth on.
Will our ill-equipped swamp team figure out a way to kill the monster? Is the scene when the monster eel joins the naked coed in her shower a mere metaphor for Harvey Weinstein, and the carnage he has caused young actresses? The gore is over-the-top and the creature is quite ominous and toothy in this monster film.  For a neat monster and plenty of icky gore, see "Razortooth," directed by Patricia Harrington. It has not been confirmed if Ms. Harrington has ever met Mr. Weinstein.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Eyeball, Vermont Psychos head to Spain

Is everyone in Vermont a homicidal maniac? America's dirty little secret, though not from Italian director Umberto Lenzi, concerns this very question. So all you Europeans beware, and look at 1975's "Eyeball" as a warning, they may look like peaceful tourists, but if they're from Vermont, I assure you they are homicidal maniacs slaves to the imaginary voices in their heads.
A bunch of tourists from Burlington, Vermont (this is mentioned many times in this Lenzi film) land in Barcelona for a week of sightseeing. These are weirdos. A dad who fantasizes about murdering his daughter, a creepy priest, a secretary having an affair with her boss, two bickering but sultry lesbians, and more make up the group. Paulette (Martine Brochard)...we see her nude a lot...joins the group for a mysterious reason. Naiba (Ines Pellegrini) and Lisa (Mirta Miller) are the two lesbians...we see them nude a lot. The first murder occurs, a young lady has her eye gouged out as she is stabbed several times. A half second after this slaughter, Mark (John Richardson) appears at the crime scene. In fact, he has a penchant for doing this throughout the film. Mark is Paulette's boss and his wife Alma (Marta May) is insane and may have killed a girl in Burlington, Vermont.
As we meet more of the characters, they all have motives for killing indiscriminately. The old priest is really weird and usually is the last person the victims see before they assume room temperature. As Paula tells Mark he must divorce his wife if he wants any more sex with her, Mark gets grouchy and discovers that his dagger he used in Vietnam is the murder weapon. When Lisa takes a break from having sex with Naiba to help Mark find the killer, she is killed, hence her eye is taken. As the tourists diminish in number and eyeballs are gouged out, the nudity and gore increase. As Mark emerges as the number one suspect, it appears that his crazy wife Alma has followed him to Barcelona. Is Paulette in peril from an insane and jealous wife? Is a jealous lesbian the insaniac? Just why is the killer gouging out eyeballs of the victims?
Umberto Lenzi has done a fine job capturing the homicidal insanity of Burlington, Vermont. The questions are all answered and I gotta say that the answers are quite shocking. You won't believe why the insane Vermonter desires eyes of corpses. This film is perhaps a good old fashioned sex and gore Italian horror film, or a warning to the world community to join an effort to isolate and quarantine Vermont from civilization. Enjoy "Eyeball" (aka "The Secret Killer") available on YouTube.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Blood Salvage, Organ Harvesters and Beauty Queens

The most remote parts of rural America hold many surprises for main stream Americans. Moonshine and marijuana crops aren't the only deviant industries thriving away from metropolitan sophistication. Today we look at 1990's "Blood Salvage," where down-home preaching and organ harvesting play havoc on a stunning beauty pageant hopeful.
She's blonde and, as her white swimsuit suggests, pure. April (Lori Birdsong) has come to a rural peach festival to compete in a pageant. Uh oh, a disease has relegated April to a wheelchair, but her charm just may win her a crown. She captivates the judges and the owner of a towing/salvage company, Jake (Danny Nelson). Jake, also a pastor, can't control his drool and he knows he must have April. Bad news for April and her family; Jake and his two boys, Hiram (Christian Hesler) and Roy (Ralph Pruitt Vaughn), bump cars off the road, and tow them and their occupants to their salvage yard. There, Jake turns into a mad-scientist and surgically removes the organs of out-of-towners to sell on the black-market.
As Jake and his two boys abduct April and her family, the fun begins. April's mom, dad (John Saxon), and little brother will suffer such gruesome fates. Jake has plans for April, however. As both boys want to rape April, Jake wants her for himself. The white-clad pageant beauty won't be soiled without a fight. As Jake harvests organs, he also keeps his victims alive so he can visit the well repeatedly. Oh yes, Jake is a pastor, remember. As he cuts out organs he preaches sermons to the no-longer-whole miserables locked in his barn/lab. Being a widow for so long, Jake is ready for April and he readies his lab for a special surgery.
What does Jake have planned for the beauty in white? Will April ever walk again, and if so will she be able to mount a counter-attack on Jake and his boys? Is "Blood Salvage" a thinly veiled metaphor of rural America's rejection of the over sexualized culture overtaking society? You will cheer so hard for April to walk again, even more so than our parents cheered for Heidi to walk. I will say, the urgency for April to walk beats that of Heidi's, as Heidi wasn't going to get her organs pulled out...I don't think. Fans of "Motel Hell" will love "Blood Salvage," directed by Tucker Johnston.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Hammerhead, The Bold and the Beautiful Meets Re-Animator

Hunter Tylo is a courageous actress best known for role as a sultry beauty on the soap "The Bold and the Beautiful." When she became pregnant while starring in "Melrose Place" the beauty was told to have an abortion or be fired. She chose life. Jeffrey Combs has emerged as the greatest film mad-scientist in modern day cinema. As the demented scientist in "Re-Animator," Mr. Combs became a modern day Dr. Frankenstein. In 2005's "Hammerhead," the beauty runs head first into the monster scientist and the results will spurt a lot of blood.
Amelia grabs a shotgun
Amelia (Tylo) is the R & D director at a struggling pharmaceutical company. Dr. King (Combs) is a mad-scientist who has come up with a cure for cancer on his remote island lab.  The company sends Amelia, her BF Tom (William Forsyth), and several other employees to the island to convince King to sell them the drug. Uh oh...Amelia was engaged to King's son, Paul. Paul died five years ago of cancer (...or did he?). Double uh-oh, King is angry at Amelia and the company for firing him many years ago. Triple uh-oh, King plans on killing the team and saving Amelia to mate with his monstrous creation.  See, King has perfected the cross-species insemination and has created a hybrid man/hammerhead shark.
A bevy of mad scientists
As the film progresses we see a lot of this hammerhead monster as it kills swimmers and nubile babes. King has mated his monster with these babes who have birthed deformed and toothy mutations. Now he wants Amelia to mate with this thing.  Why Amelia? You guessed it...though I won't deliver the spoiler to you. As the team escapes Dr. King's lab, they will be hunted by the creature, man-eating plants, and flesh eating microbes (...after all, mad-scientists stay busy when not curing cancer). The team will dwindle in number, as the prettier the team member, the gorier the death. Unfortunately for Amelia, she will endure capture and a fateful reunion with her former fiance.
Paul has lunch
Limbs will be severed and fly, blood will spurt, and nubile babes will have mutant monsters explode out of their bellies...yes, "Hammerhead" is a worthwhile view. Hunter Tylo plays to the camera well, and has some very gratuitous scenes, and Jeffrey Combs is masterful as the mad-scientist. Will Amelia mate with her ex-fiance? Will a cure for cancer hit the market, even though human experimentation was key in its development? Can a mutant hybrid shark creature find love among a large sample of beautiful women? Shot in Bulgaria and directed by Michael Oblowitz, "Hammerhead" will please all of you gore-hounds.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Murderlust, Church Going Serial Killer

No cute puppies. No adorable babies. No fury kittens. No babies playing with cute puppies and fury kittens. Nope. In 1985's "Murderlust" we have nothing but seedy and perverted violent carnage. The acting is quite good and the plot is painfully ominous, but if you like your horror on the horrific side, this film will get you going.
Steve (Eli Rich) is a serial killer who kills vulnerable young ladies after strangling and raping them. This monster dumps their bodies in the desert.  Uh oh...he has another side to him. Steve is also a Sunday school teacher of teenagers and has the confidence of the church community. Away from church, he finds prostitutes and goes to town on them. The cops have no clues in tracking the Mojave Killer, but Steve is above suspicion.
While trolling for his next victim, he picks up Cheryl (Rochelle Taylor), a disabled motorist. Cheryl is different. She is smart...aggressive...and has no victim in her psyche.  Cheryl also recognizes Steve from Church.  The two will start a romance which will lead Cheryl on a path toward a gruesome fate. The romance with Cheryl has Steve off his game and his choice of victims now affect the church community. With his murder count over a dozen, will Cheryl show enough spunk to figure out Steve's real identity and fight back?
This is a gritty film with no humor or feel good moments. The kills are graphic and heartbreaking. The introduction of Cheryl, as a strong and smart would be heroine is a nice touch. We cheer for Cheryl to succeed but our devil is awfully good at his trade.  Directed by Donald Jones, if you can stomach true horror, see "Murderlust."

Sunday, October 1, 2017

The Man Without a Body, Nostradamus Does Wall Street

Forget financial apps, Merrill Lynch, or Fidelity. To make a killing in investing, one needs a prophet who is never wrong. The problem is Nostradamus lived in the 16th century. Imagine if you could have this great prophet at your service to make those tough investment decisions. Perhaps you could tap into his brilliance and wager on Super Bowls and World Series.' Hence 1957's "The Man Without a Body." Warning...after seeing this film you may not want to know the future.
Karl Brussard (George Coulouris) is the richest, most powerful man in the world. He has built a financial empire. Bad news...he's dying of a brain tumor. Desiring to send his empire into the future, he barges in on Dr. Merritt (Robert Hutton), the greatest brain surgeon in the world. Karl knows Merritt has perfected brain transplants. Merritt's laboratory is adorned with his macabre experiments. A monkey's head swivels and watches the goings on. An eyeball, suspended with wires watches one's every move. Brussard wants Merritt to remove his damaged brain and replace it with the greatest mind in the history of mankind. You might ask who's brain would that be?
Karl then pays for a grave-robber to travel to France and steal the head of Nostradamus. The theft goes forth perfectly, but as you can imagine, difficulties arise. Brussard's trophy girlfriend Odette (Nadja Regin) falls for Merritt's assistant Lou (Sheldon Lawrence). The two plot to make sure Karl doesn't  survive the transplant operation. Even more awkwardness arises when Merritt is successful in reanimating Nostradamus' head. The old prophet isn't keen on the idea of being mounted on Karl's torso. As Karl pumps the prophet's head for financial advice, Nostradamus devises a horrific plot. No spoilers here but you won't believe the last 15 minutes of this film.
Will Merritt ever put Nostradamus' head on Karl's body? Will Nostradamus manage to master the financial markets? Will the 500 year old head develop an attraction to the sultry Odette? This is a wild one. The plot is far fetched and has a couple of big holes, but the ambition of "The Man Without a Body" is very inspiring. Directed by W. Lee Wilder, this film will gratify any B movie fan.