Friday, June 19, 2009
(1989)I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. I remember seeing it on display at the video store when I was little and renting it because I was drawn to the cover. As a child I couldn't get past the first twenty minutes because I was a slasher fanatic and didn't have the patience for psychological thrills. I am so glad I gave it another chance as an adult! The movie is set in what appears to be typical 1950's suburbia and is seen through the eyes of a young boy, Michael Laemle, who suspects his parents may be cannibals. The boy's suspicions grow stronger as he has a series of nightmares involving his parents' eating habits. Are his parents really cannibals? Or are you watching the imagination of a mentally disturbed child? Depending on how you look at this film, the answers may seem obvious or up for debate.
Parents definitely opens up the door for a great discussion because at times you'll just be saying, "What is going on"? In fact, I thought for sure while watching this movie that David Lynch must have had some involvement due to the beautiful cinematography, choice of music, set design and weird Lynchian plot. Also, keeping with the David Lynch comparisons, the movie features a song by Angelo Badalamenti called "Meatloaf Mambo". It turns out that the similarities are just that and there is no connection to the king of visual weirdness. The movie was actually written by Christopher Hawthorne and the director is Bob Balaban, who many may recognize from the Christopher Guest film A Mighty Wind or the countless roles he has played on sitcoms such as Seinfeld or Friends. The parents, Nick and Lily Laemle are brilliantly played by Randy Quaid and Mary Beth Hurt. Michael Laemle is played by Brian Madorsky, whom it seems decided not to continue his acting career which is unfortunate because he was an excellent child actor. This movie is available on DVD, though rather hard to come by due to cult following. However, it's also highly recommended.
Monday, June 8, 2009
(1990)-Believe it or not, this was a great horror-comedy. I went into this movie not expecting very much and came away pleasantly surprised. Mary-Lou Mahoney rises from the dead and seduces a high school senior, Tim Conlon, into helping her carry out numerous murders of high school students and faculty. Tim soon changes from an ordinary guy with average grades, into a football star with straight A's that has a sexy ghost for a girlfriend. Unfortunately, Tim gets tired of Mary's murderous pranks and sends her back to hell. This movie has alot of great dark humor and pretty decent gore effects as well. The actress that plays Mary (Courtney Taylor) is beautiful and plays the role of Mary-Lou perfectly. The whole cast does a great job of making you feel like you're back in high school and that can be pretty scary in itself! Be sure to watch the R-rated version of this movie, as it is a little more gorey and throws in a little bit of nudity as well. This movie is available on DVD and is often put out as a double feature with Prom Night IV by Artisan.
(1988) AWFUL-I stopped watching about 40 minutes in to the movie and even that was hard to bare. The so-called story takes place at a home for troubled youths called, St. Boniface. A new addition to the group comes knocking on the door in the middle of the night needing a place to hide out from his murderous father. As luck would have it, the boy's father finds his hideout and proceeds to possess his soul in order to draw energy from it. The boy is now able to create telekinetic force fields that create accidents in order to draw in more energy. The acting and effects are horrible and the story-line lacks any continuity. I must say I was very disappointed because this movie was once featured on USA Up All Night and I usually have fun watching those movies even if they are bad! I would definitely skip this one! In case you are looking to torture yourself and must see this movie, it was directed by Deryn Warren and seems to have only been released on VHS. The movie also has an alternate title, The Boy from Hell.
Saturday, June 6, 2009
( 1981)-This slasher film is mediocre at best but has a few clever death scenes and an adequate body count to keep you interested. The movie begins with track star, Laura Ramstead, dying of a blood clot in front of the whole high school just after she crosses the finish line. Laura's death sparks a series of murders that are executed by a faceless killer armed with a stop watch and whatever weapon seems handy at the time. There is actually a scene where a high school football player is killed with his own football! Who doesn't want to see that? I'm not bitter at all about high school... anyway back to the review. What I really like about this movie is that it's a classic cheesy 80's b-slasher, complete with high school students who look like they're in their 30's and slow motion montage moments placed randomly throughout the film. Another plus, is that Linnea Quigley (B-movie scream queen) co-stars in the movie so that always means nudity. The movie also features Vanna White who has a very small role with not much dialogue. The movie was directed by Herbert Freed and is available on DVD. Overall I think if you're an 80's slasher fan who is always looking for more, it is definitely worth watching. On the other hand, if you're looking for a high-thrill, keep-you-on-the-edge-of-your-seat horror movie, then skip it!
Saturday, May 30, 2009
(1981)-If you like the Friday the 13th series, this is definatley one to check out! The movie begins with a group of young kids at a summer camp who decide to play a prank on the caretaker, Cropsy. Their prank goes horribly wrong and although Cropsy comes out alive, he is severaly burned. Now that he's deformed, Cropsy is pissed off at the world and decides to take revenge on the next generation of campers and their counselors. His weapon of choice is a pair of very sharp gardening shears that rack up a fair body count once you get half-way through the movie. Although the filming style and quality of this movie may be grittier and a little more low-budget than the Friday series, the movie does feature a very memorable death scene involving several campers on a raft. The movie also features some well-known actors such as Jason Alexander and Holly Hunter. Most of the music in the movie is done by Rick Wakemen,of the band Yes, and relies heavily on synthesized keyboard compositions. It is directed by Tony Maylam and is currently available on DVD. A must see for slasher fans, especially those who love classic 80's slashers!
Friday, May 29, 2009
(1988)-This a great dark, slightly comedic horror film that takes place on Halloween night. A group of teenagers who are looking for a place to party (sounds good to me already because you just know its going to go bad) are invited to a shindig at Hull House by the creepy girl at school, Angela. They all show up (first mistake) to the dilapidated mansion that was once used as a mortuary. Things start to get creepy when the group holds a seance and conjure up some demons that were just lying in wait. Bauhaus music gets played, people get possessed, nudity takes place and there are very few survivors. What more could you ask for? For some reason I always seam to get really creeped out by this one. It could have something to do with a tube of lipstick... Directed by Kevin Tenney and starring 80's b-movie scream queen Linnea Quigley. This movie is available on DVD from Anchor Bay and has two sequals.
(1980)-I loved this movie! Whats not to love when mutated amphibious sea-creatures start to terrorize a small town in order to mate with its young female population. Humanoids is the story of a salmon-fishing community who in order to keep the town thriving experiments with a growth hormone to make their catch more plentiful. As I'm sure you have already guessed, the experiment goes horribly wrong. The hormone only proves to create a breed of half human half salmon(I think) sea creatures that are seeking to keep their population alive. How do they do this you ask? By sexually assaulting a young woman so she may give birth to their offspring. I know this sounds really weird, but I found it oddly entertaining. The body count isn't that high, but there is some gore and bloodshed to be seen. Produced by Roger Corman and directed by Barbara Peeters, this was released on DVD for a short time but went out of print almost immediately. So, if you see it in some one's garage sale-definitely snatch it up!