Sunday 30 September 2012

DVD review: The Mad Bunch (1989)

A peace researcher (David Carradine) is kidnapped and a high ransom requested. The daughter of the peace researcher hires a bunch of happy amateurs playing mercenaries to rescue his father. Everything does not go as smoothly as planned and they quickly begin to realize that the task they have undertaken is much more dangerous than they had anticipated. The Mad Bunch is written by Timothy Earle and Mats Helge Olsson who also directs alongside Arne Mattson. It´s one more swedish production that tries to pass itself off as American. The acting is pretty horrible but everybody knows that nobody watches a Mats Helge Olsson movie for the acting. The camerawork and editing is pretty decent, some scenes are too dark (could be due to poor source material, I think they´ve used a VHS as master for this), the quality of picture is so and so. And I´ll mention that the audio is pretty bad. Even if the running time is just 86 minutes I found the flick to be pretty dull and I found myself looking at the clock time and again. The action is uninspired and just plain boring. We get gunplay, shootouts and some pretty bad fightchoreography. There is plenty intentional comic relief but there is also a lot of unintentional comedy due to this being so bad. There is some very brief gore as some character gets his throat cut off and there are a few squibs so it´s hard to believe that this is made by the same man who gave us the ultraviolent The Ninja Mission. Nothing to report in the T & A department.
This review is based upon the swedish region 2 DVD release from JGS AB.
Rating: 0½ out of 7. I did not enjoy this.... The Mad Bunch is utterly boring, borderline idiotic and  even if there are a few good scenes they can´t save this mess. This is without a doubt the weakest of the Mats Helge Olsson flicks I´ve seen so far.


DVD review: Fatal Secret (1988)

A computer disc is stolen and Kim Brown (Camilla Lundén) is asked to arrange a deal between LeWinter (David Carradine), which now has the floppy, and the CIA who want it. But she tricks the two and flees with the money and disc. With the CIA and KGB LeWinter behind she quickly realizes that she is playing a dangerous game. Fatal Secret is written and directed by Mats Helge Olsson and Anders Nilsson. It´s another swedish production that tries to pass itself off as American. The acting isn´t very good but we watch these movies for the action and not for the acting. The camerawork and editing is pretty good. The pacing is pretty good and there´s plenty of gunplay, shootouts and hand to hand fighting and A.R. Hellquist is pretty good as John Mitchell, Kim Brown´s former lover who comes to her aid. There are some gore in the form of squibs. There is some brief T & A in this courtesy of Camilla Lundén.
This review is based upon the swedish region 2 DVD release from JGS AB
Rating: 3½ out of 7. I enjoyed this, it´s a pretty decent action flick with a decent plot and plenty of action.

Saturday 29 September 2012

DVD review: Animal Protector (1988)

A group of animal rights activists get wind of an island where the military is conducting horrific experiments on animals in the hope of developing new biological weapon. They travel there with the mission to free the animals, but not everything goes as planned and soon realizes them that they are perhaps the only thing that can prevent a global disaster. Animal Protector is written by Anders Nilsson and Mats Helge Olsson who also is the director. It´s a swedish production that tries to pass itself off as American. The acting is pretty bad but I´ll have to say that I wasn´t expecting much and neither should you. David Carradine plays Col. Whitlock (the main bad guy) and he is actually pretty good as a baddie, he gets to shoot people and kick some ass and is suitably ruthless. The camerawork and editing is pretty good. The pacing is good and there is hardly a dull moment in it. I´ve never seen so many non-military looking soldiers in any movie, it´s quite obvious that the filmmakers must have had contacts with some local military surplus dealer as there is a wide range of uniforms, web gears and insignias. Somewhere it is said that there are marines on the island but according to their insignias they are Green Berets, Special Air Service and so on.  But I shouldn´t be nitpicking. There is a lot of gunplay, explosions and stunts. There are even some martial arts but the fight choreography isn´t very good. When our hero means business he decides to fight wearing only a  tank top for the rest of the flick, yup it´s that kind of movie. There is no gore and surprisingly few squibs in this. There is no T & A in this.
This review is based upon the swedish region 2 DVD release from JGS AB.
Rating: 3½ out of 7. I enjoyed this, Animal Protector is a decent and entertaining b-action but it isn´t a new The Ninja Mission (which is insanely violent).


Thursday 27 September 2012

DVD review: Blood Tracks (1985)

A blood bath of terrifying violence is unleashed when a group of rock musicians and their film crew venture deep into the snowy mountains to shoot scenes for their latest video. After a  series of avalanches the group is left stranded and are forced to take refuge in a remote mountain cabin. The crew decide on a nearby disused power station, as the next shooting location, but soon discover that they are not alone as they and the group fall into the clutches of the feral family that inhabit the power station. Fearing that their territory and existence is being threatened they unleash a bloody reign of terror upon their unsuspecting victims. Blood Tracks is written by Anna Wolf and Mats Helge Olsson who also is the director under the pseudonym of “Mike Jackson". The acting is pretty dreadfull but I´ll be honest and admit that I wasn´t expecting much. The dialogue is pretty bad. The camerawork and editing is pretty good. There is some use of avalanche stock footage. It´s a pretty dark movie, large portions take parts during night or in a large derelict factory. Some might think this is a bad thing but in my opinion it is a positive thing as some of the gore might not looks perfect and darkness certainly is more creepy than having everything shown in daylight. There are a few elaborate booby traps in the movie, lets just say that they do the job. The music from Easy Action who portray the rock musicians is pretty bad and feels dated (it´s very 1980s) but it´s a matter of taste. There is quite a bit of T & A in this, topless nudity from several of the actresses and it´s quite evident that Mats Helge Olsson obviously was aware of what is expected of a genre-flick as he besides nudity brings on bucket of blood and gore. The bodycount is pretty high, the make-up fx´s are all practical, we get gory impalments, throats getting chunks of flesh ripped from it, ripping out someone eye with your teeth and much more. Several kills happens on screen which is sure to delight the gorehounds. Please note that the new Studio S Entertainment release is a full uncut version version.
Blood Tracks is also known as Heavy Metal and Shocking Heavy Metal.
This review is based upon the Swedish region 2 DVD release from Studio S Entertainment.
Rating: 5½ out of 7. I enjoyed this but I do have to confess that I have a soft spot for Mats Helge Olssons independent features (I highly recommend the ultraviolent The Ninja Mission), it´s a swedish take on The Hills Have Eyes and it tries to pass itself off as American. Recommended to fans of the slasher genre.


DVD review: Psychon Invaders (Video 2006)

First I´d like to thank Jeff Leroy for sending me a copy of Psychon Invaders as I´ve had problems locating a copy of the japanese DVD release.
Sarah McKinnis (Victoria De Mare), a software engineer at a weapons factory, is accidentally shot in the head by a new type of riot control pistol. From that moment, her life becomes a nightmare. People appear to her as hideous aliens. She is the only one that can see these creatures. She tries to warn her normal looking supervisor, Ed Devon (Vinnie Bilancio), but the evil space creatures massacre everyone at her laboratory. Sarah escapes with the riot control pistol. The aliens kill her sister in retaliation. She wages a lone war against the extra-terrestrial menace, shooting and killing the army of hideous, green skinned monsters from space. But, how can one woman stop this hidden invasion from the stars? Psychon Invaders is written and directed by Jeff Leroy and it´s a micro-budget feature flick which means for instance that the riot control pistol that Sarah escapes with looks like a toygun, that the guns used by various characters in the flick look like toys. The acting is over the top, the camerawork and editing is pretty decent. There´s some gore but it´s mostly when aliens get shot, get their heads crushed or spliced open with a machete. There is a lot of computer rendered fx in this, used for the alien spaceships and I´ll say that it looks pretty bad if not very bad. As usual with Jeff Leroy flicks we get to see things get blown up, he uses miniature buidlings and matchbox cars (in my opnion it really cool that he opts to use models instead of CGI). The aliens make-up fx design is simple but pretty cool.There is some topless nudity, Psychon Invaders begins with a naked girl wrapped in writhing tentacles and then there are another scene later on. We get two women (one of which is Victoria De Mare) around in their underwear in prolonged scenes but hey I ain´t complaining.
This review is based upon the Japanese region 2 DVD release from Amsell Entertainment.
Rating: 3½ out of 7. I enjoyed this. The plot, obviously inspired by John Carpenter´s They Live, is pretty cool. After the beginning I kinda hoped for more tentacle action but sadly the filmmakers didn´t go that way. The overuse of cartoonish CGI is kinda sad, I wish Jeff Leroy would have used models or something similar instead of it.


DVD review: Creepies (Video 2003)

Deadly spiders are accidentally unleashed from a top-secret military installation. Army specialists and Tanks are called in to exterminate the deadly predators, but the outbreak is worse than expected. Weapons of mass destruction have little or no effect on the venomous spiders. Civilians are strangled with spider webs and eaten alive. The Military in a desperate effort to eradicate the killer spiders, decide to demolish the entire city. Creepies is written by Eric Spudic and directed by Jeff Leroy. The acting is pretty bad but Í don´t watch these movies for price winning performances and don´t expect any. I watch them for the entertainment factor. The camerawork and editing is pretty good. Rapid pacing, there´s hardly a dull moment in it. There's gore throughout the film as people get eaten and ripped apart by the spiders. The spiders, well we get a combination of computer gendered fx, some made out of rubber, some made out of plastic, stuffed animals and so on. The cgi is pretty bad but entertaining and has a certain charm. As usual with Jeff Leroy flicks there is miniature buildings, military vehicles, matchbox cars, helicopters and the characters are armed with toyguns (that you can buy at Toys R Us). And yes, Jeff gets to blow up things in this flick also, there is big practical explosions galore as the the military tries to eradicate the spiders. There is no T & A in this.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from Maverick Entertainment.
Rating: 4½ out of 7. I had a good time watching this. It´s yet another entertaining micro-budget feature flick from Jeff Leroy made with imagination, enthusiasm and love. Although I do prefer practical fx (I'm crazy 'bout miniatures) instead of cgi some of it is laugh out loud bad in Creepies, I realize that a flick on this scale would have been difficult or even perhaps impossible to pull off without resorting to cgi. If you´re a fan of low budget flicks and creature features this one is for you but mainstream film fans should stay far away.


Wednesday 26 September 2012

DVD review: Porkchop II Rise of the Rind (2011)

When young Simon Robertson (Sam Qualiana) moves with his family to a new town, he thinks the biggest peril will be the local bullies. Unfortunately, Simon's friend Meg (Angela Pritchett) informs him that this town has a much darker secret: a body count stretching into the hundreds - all the handiwork of Porkchop, a deranged madman with a pig mask. When the killer resurfaces, Simon and Meg will experience the most terrifying night of their soon-to-be short lives. Porkchop II Rise of the Rind is written and directed by Eamon Hardiman. The acting is intentionally bad, at least I hope that´s the case. The camerawork and editing is decent in this micro-budget feature. After a strong start the flick loses some of its momentum but it picks up the pace again after awhile. The biggest wtf moments in Porkchop II Rise of the Rind are when two of the main characters burst into song. And it doesn´t happen once, it happens twice... There is some gory scenes, practical make-up fx but some of the kills occur off screen. There is plenty of topless nudity in this, in fact the first nudity occurs within 2 minutes and it´s girl on girl action. Now some of you might think "wow" but sadly there ain´t much of a wow-factor in it.. It´s badly shot and features two pretty unattractive actresses.
Porkchop II Rise of the Rind is also known as Porkchops.
This review is based upon the region all (Region 0) DVD release from Independent Entertainment.
Rating: 1½ out of 7. Porkchop II: Rise Of The Rind is a better movie than the first one, better pacing, better plot, more kills, more T & A and more gore. If you liked the first Pork Chop then you should enjoy this one


DVD review: Crack (Video 2000)

First I´d like to thank Jeff Leroy for being very kind and generous to send me this as I´ve not been able to find a copy of it and he sent me a original DVD.
Dante and Trenton are two buddies from the hood out to make a fast buck. When their drug lab explodes, they take it on the lam until a corrupt cop forces them on a suicide missin: Rob a maffia-backed crack house or go to jail for life. The robbery goes off without a hitch, but when the cop tries to kill Dante and Trenton and takes the loot - all hell breaks loose. A killing spree ignites Los Angeles like matches to gas, and by the end everyone gets scorched. Crack is written and directed by Jeff Leroy. The acting ranges from pretty bad to decent but keep in mind that this is a micro-budget feature film. The camerawork and editing is pretty decent. The micro-budget is quite evident in many ways: The set-design, the use of toyguns, the kind that you can buy at at the local Toys R Us and so on. They also splice in some stock fotage here and there, which is notable in one of the shootouts. It´s very violent and very gory, lots of juicy squibs, heads being blown off at point blank range, baseball bat to the head and more. It´s all practical make-up fx. In addition to this we get big ass explosions and Jeff Leroy´s miniature works (which I love). In the T & A department there is a prolonged scene where a escort (I think) tries to seduce a man, she´s wearing only a G-string, while he is on the phone.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from Vista Street Entertainment
Rating: 6 out of 7. I enjoyed this a lot. It´s gritty and gloriously violent. It has a much more serious tone than the other Jeff Leroy flicks that I´ve seen.  Sure it has flaws, many of which are due to the limitations to the budget but I find those flaws quite charming and I like Jeff Leroy´s no holds barred approach. When it get violent the blood flows freely.


DVD review: Warlords (1988)

In a brutal, radioactive future, David Carradine plays Dow, the fearless warrior who is humanity´s last hope against The Warlord (Sid Haig) and his mutant horde. With the gorgeous, deadly Danny (Dawn Wildsmith) and the strange Ammo at his side, Dow makes desperate war on the fierce desert savages who threaten to overrun the world, Courage and resourcefulness on a heroic scale lead to a final, bitter triumph in this epic action adventure. Warlords is written by Scott Andrew Ressler and is directed by Fred Olen Ray. Bad acting! The camerawork and editing is decent. The soundtrack is pretty bad. The action, we get shootouts and carchases but these are just plain unexciting. There are a few really irritating characters in this, or is it because they are such lousy actors/actresses but Ammo (a malformed talking head ) in David Carradine´s backpack is really f*cking annoying, that voice just turns my stomach and Dawn Wildsmith is hilariously bad (apparently she used to be married to Fred Olen Ray which might explain why she plays one of the main characters in this). There is no gore to speak of, minimum amount of squibs and so on. The mutants don´t offer anything exciting as they are simply dressed in tattered rags and dimestore gas masks. In the T & A department there is quite a bit of topless nudity.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from Image Entertainment.
Rating: 1 out of 7. Yeah, this is dreadfully bad and a tedious experience to sit through so don't watch this movie, save your money and spend it on something else.


Tuesday 25 September 2012

DVD review: American Eagle (1989)

Twenty years ago, Vietnam turned three American boys into men, but amidst the horror Johnny Burke (Vernon Wells) cracked. When his friends, Max (Asher Brauner) and Rudy (Robert F. Lyons), stop him from torturing an innocent Cambodian girl, he wheels on them and, aflame with hatred, vows vengeance. Now, two decades later, Johnny Burke´s day has come. he masterminds the kidnapping of Rudy´s beautiful sister, Angela, and six other gorgeous models from a sleepy tropical town. Rudy calls Max, now a CIA mercenenary exhausted with death, and togheter they follow a blood-bathed trail into the heart of a madman´s cunning revenge. American Eagle is written by Asher Brauner and is directed by Robert J. Smawley. The acting is pretty decent, Vernon Wells plays another bad guy (a role he´s played in several movies) and does a good job. The camerawork and editing is good. The action-sequences are uneven. There´s no gore in this except for squibs when peple get shot. There is no T & A in this.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from Platinum Disc.
Rating: 4½ out of 7. This could easily have been a prequel or a sequel to the similar themed Merchants Of War (also written and starring Asher Brauner) that came before it but it is not eventhough it seems to have been released as Part 2 to that movie in Germany. If compared American Eagle has a better plot, better acting and is just plain better...


Monday 24 September 2012

DVD review: Merchants of War (1989)

Commandos Nick Drennen (Asher Brauer) and Frank Kane (Jesse Vint) were friends in war, in peace and beyond enemy lines. One last job gone bad delivers them into the hands of vicious terrorist criminals, Despite torture and insurmountable odds, Drennen escapes, Two tasks remain: rescue his friend and pay back the pain in blood. Merchants Of War is written by Asher Brauer and Erik Weston and is directed by Peter M. Mackenzie. The acting is decent but there are also some real bad acting, especially from Adrian Waldron who plays the main bad guy Musa Atwa he is pretty dreadful in this. It´s professionally shot and edited. After a strong start the movie pretty soon loses it pace and becomes pretty dull if not plain boring as it gets talky and nothing happens for some time. The action is pretty good, lots of guns, shootouts and explosions but the filmmakers have chosen the most annoying piece of music for these scenes and it´s played so loud that it´s hard to hear dialogue and even the shooting which irritating. There is brief gore in the form of squibs as people get shot, get their throats cut and get hung on meat hooks. In the T & A department there is some topless nudity and a sexscene.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from Platinum Disc.
Rating: 2½ out of 7. Merchants Of War is decent entertainment for the moment if you are a fan of 1980´s action flicks  .


DVD review: Armed Response (1986)

It´s a violent world of ruthless criminals that populates the underworld of Los Angeles Chinatown. Amidst the neon signs, curio shops and crowds of tourists brushing alongside the Asian locals sits the Mimosa Cafe. The saloon is operated as a partnership between a proud family of veterans. Burt Roth (Lee Van Cleef), a crusty old man recalling his days in combat during World War II, actually leaves the work to his two sons, Tommy (Brent Huff) and Jim (David Carradine), who are still haunted by remnants of the Vietnam War. When the tight-knit family becomes inadvertenly embroiled in a plot to double-cross the mobster Tanaka (Mako) in his attempts to retrieve a priceless jade statue. Armed Response is written by Paul Hertzberg, T.L. Lankford and Fred Olen Ray who also is the director. The acting is decent for the most part,  Lee Van Cleef is great but Laurene Landon is hilariously bad in this. In supporting roles we got Michael Berryman, Dick Miller and Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa. The camerawork and editing is good. The Vietnam flashbacks, comprised of stock footage spliced with newly filmed material featuring David Carradine are effective even if they at some moments look a bit cheap. It´s fast-paced and entertaining with shootouts, explosions and stuntwork  No gore except in the shape of squibs as people get shot. In the T & A department I can report some brief topless nudity as some characters visit a strip club.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from Platinum Disc.
Rating: 4½ out of 7. Even if it´s fairly predictable this enjoyable and entertaining flick delivers what is expected from it. David Caradine and Lee Van Cleef do not disappoint. I haven't seen many movies from Fred Olen Ray but I´ve gotten the impression that this is one of his better efforts and it´s certainly worth checking out


Review: Night Claws (2012)

First I´d like to thank Midnight releasing for providing me with a screener.
A bloodthirsty Bigfoot, which kills without warning, is on a rampage near a small town. This is not your ordinary Bigfoot -- This creature is lightning fast, incredibly strong and seems to thrive on not just killing but tearing people apart as well. A strong, beautiful, and sometimes mysterious woman (Leilani Sarelle) shows up claiming to represent the Federal Government and pushes the local Sheriff (Reb Brown) into hunting down this creature, but they are not alone in their hunt. As multiple groups of hunters all seek out the famed prize the lines become seriously blurred between the hunter and the hunted. Night Claws is written by Fabio Soldani and David A. Prior who also is the director. The acting is decent, it´s a joy to see the return of Reb Brown to the screen as he hasn´t done any acting since 1998. The camerawork and editing is good. The soundtrack is nice. The pacing is very good, the running time is just over 80 minutes and I like that Night Claws isn´t too predictable as there are a couple of twists along the way. There is some brief gore, the Bigfoot make-up fx design is nice and it is a man in suit design ( in all scenes except one in which I´m not sure if its practical or cgi). In the T & A department there is only some very brief topless nudity and you hardly see anything.
For more information please visit the official website .
Night Claws will be released 12/11/2012 by Midnight Releasing on region all (Region 0) DVD.
This review is based upon a passwordprotected online screener provided by Midnight releasing.
Rating: 6 out of 7. I enjoyed this a lot. It´s a  fast paced, entertaining creature flick that throws in a couple unexpected twists along the way. This is the best David A. Prior flick I´ve seen so far.


Saturday 22 September 2012

Review: I Didn't Come Here To Die (2010)

First I´d like to thank Level 33 Entertainment for providing me with a screener.
The story of six young volunteers working on a humanitarian project in the woods. Horrific accidents, rash decisions and the unpredictability of human nature leads them all to the same disturbing conclusion. Volunteer work can be a killer. I Didn't Come Here To Die is written and directed by Bradley Scott Sullivan who also shot and edited the movie. The acting is pretty good, it nicely shot and edited with a Grindhouse inspired aesthetic  The electronic soundtrack is great. I don´t want to give away too much of the plot but this isn´t a typical slasher even if it is obviously inspired by the genre. There is sprinkles of some surreal dark humor. There is some interesting, creative and brutal death sequences, the fx are both practical and computer gendered. It looks pretty good for the most part. In the T & A department we get some very nice topless nudity from Emmy Robbin who plays Sophia, she provides all the eye candy in this and oh boy she is nice to look at.
Theatrical Release Date: In select theaters October 11
DVD & VOD Release Date: Early 2013
For more information visit the official website .
This review is based upon a passwordprotected onlinescreener provided by Level 33 Entertainment.
Rating: 7 out of 7. This was awesome! I loved it! I Didn't Come Here To Die gives us a very refreshing take on slasher genre and is a fun-filled experience. I´m very impressed by the fact that this was made by Bradley Scott Sullivan, it is his first feature film, and a small very small crew on a microbudget. He does an exceptional job and there is some real artistic talent on display. It will be very interesting to see what Bradley Scott Sullivan comes up with next. Check it out! You'll be glad you did.


Friday 21 September 2012

DVD review: The Wind (Video 1987)

The setting is a magical fortress city in Greece. The perfect backdrop for a new murder-mystery novel -- and a real murder. But it´s not Sian Andersson (Megan Foster) who´ll write the plot. It´s the wind. An enemy and, perhaps, a friend. The Wind is written by Fred C. Perry and Nico Mastorakis who also is the director. The acting is pretty good, most of the flick is a kind of cat and mouse game between Meg Foster´s character and Phil (Wings Hauser) as she attempts to flee him. Robert Morley is great as Bogie, the landlord. The camerawork and editing is good, the setting is skillfully used by the cinematographer and it looks great. Creaky, fluttering shutters and the constant sound of the wind helps to create a nice creepy atmosphere. The soundtrack, by Hans Zimmer, is great. There no gore or T & A in this.
The Wind is also known as The Edge of Terror.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from Omega Entertainment and is distributed by Image Entertainment.
Rating: 5½ out of 7. I enjoyed this. The Wind has plenty of style, it is atmospheric and suspenseful.  It´s definitely worth a watch


Thursday 20 September 2012

DVD review: Nightmare at Noon (1988)

A small town in the middle of nowhere. A cruel experiment. Average folks transformed into vicious killers. An albino villain (Brion James). A town sheriff (George Kennedy). An obnoxious entertainment attorney (Wings Hauser). And a cop on the run (Bo Hopkins). Nightmare at Noon is written by Kirk Ellis and Nico Mastorakis who also is the director. Plenty of really bad acting which gives plenty of opportunities for unintentional comedy. Have read that Wings Hauser had some serious ´problem with cocaine during the making of this and that might explain his shitty performance, remember this is the same guy who was excellent in the classic Vice Squad (1982). The cinematography and editing is decent. We get lots of guns, various uninteresting shootouts, stunts and couple of explosions. There is overlong and pointless showdown between two helicopters, it looks like the most expensive part of the film and is probably the scene that obviously consumed most of the budget. There isn't really any blood or gore in this, a few squibs but that´s and I wonder why do the crazed folks bleed green blood. There is no T & A in this.
This review is based upon the region all (Region 0) DVD release from Omega Entertainment and distributed by Image Entertainment.
Rating: 0½ out of 7. This wasn´t very good, actually it´s pretty dumb and unentertaining attempt at making a modern day western with influences from The Crazies (1973). It´s in desperate need of more gore and some nudity (I´m not saying that just because Kimberly Ross that plays George Kennedy´s daughter is a real hottie). The only good thing about this is the soundtrack by Hans Zimmer.


DVD review: Tenement (1985)

After witnessing the miscreants shooting up heroin and lunching on rats they killed with loaded .357s, apartment dweller Hector gets fed up and turns in the band of basement squatting junkies. The police arrest them, but justice does not prevail. A few hours after their release, the gang returns with only one thing in mind; revenge! Their plan is simple; take over the building, terrorize, maim, torture and kill every tenant, one floor at a time.Tenement is written by Rick Marx and Joel Bender and is directed by Roberta Findlay. The acting is really bad and the supposedly scary/evil gangmembers looks plain silly their chains, black spandex and leather. And they look way too old for their characters. The are a few very corny scenes. The camerawork and editing is for the most part decent. The soundtrack is bad and the title song is horribly dated and just awful. It´s violent, although not as violent or gory as you might expect. Most of the make-up fx is amateurish and unconvincing, the highlight is when a caracter gets stabbed with a pair of scissors. There is some topless nudity in this.
Tenement is also known as Game of Survival and Slaughter in the South Bronx.
This review is based upun the region 1 DVD release from Media Blasters.
Rating: 1½ out of 7. Kind of a huge disappointment, it doesn´t live up to the hype surrounding it but it has its brief moments along the way. I do like the concept and that it´s pretty grim, vicious gang terrorizes the inhabitans of an apartment house but bad acting, bad sfx, bad soundtrack and so on hampers the impact Tenement could have had. Sure squemish viewers and the politically correct might find this disgusting and repulsive but being a bit jaded I find it to be boring if not a bit tedious.


Tuesday 18 September 2012

DVD review: The Wanted (2012)

A young woman (Sydney Ray) babysit’s for a strange couple. Throughout the night she receives harassing phone calls, tommyknockers and the overall feeling that something isn’t right. She soon finds out all is not what it seems! The Wanted is written by Greg Gale, Bryan Harmon and Joshua Weixelman. The acting is decent, the camerawork and editing is pretty good and in combination of the setting and the excellent soundtrack it creates a few nice creepy moments. There is also a twist in it. The flick When A Stranger Calls is of course a major inspirational source for this movie which means that it plays more for scares than graphic violence. There is a few off screen kills, no gore and no T & A in this.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from RHR Home Video, it can be bought from their website .
Rating: 2 out of 7. It´s a pretty decent indie thriller but the lack of on screen kills, gore and T & A is quite a letdown. There are a few good moments that has atmosphere but this has been done before and much better in for instance the modern classic Them (2006). The best things with The Wanted is the soundtrack which is pretty amazing and really creepy.

Sunday 16 September 2012

DVD review: The Terror Within II (1991)

In a world gone mad, the last human colony struggles to survive underground, beneath a land of nightmarish mutants who seek to destroy them. But when the mutant breaks inside humanity's final stronghold, the battle for survival pits the human colonists against their deadly invaders miles below the earth's surface. The Terror Within II is written and directed by Andrew Stevens. The mutant/monster rapists are back again... Andrew Stevens returns as David along with his dog Butch, they are the only reccuring characters. The acting is pretty bad but  R. Lee Ermey is good in this, but in my opinion he´s always great regardless if he´s in a good or bad flick. The camerawork, editing, soundtrack and pacing is decent. There is gore, decent practical make-up fx. One of the highlights is when a character gets an arrow in the head. The mutant make-up fx design is decent and for different reasons (won´t go int details due to spoilers) we get a new and different look besides the original one.There is some T & A, we topless nudity from two actresses, a couple of very soft sex scenes. There is also a scene where a mutant/monster rapes a woman tied down but it isn´t very graphic and is shot from a distance.
This review is based upon the region 2 DVD release from Stax Entertainment, it´s part of a double feature which also includes part 1.
Rating: 1½ out of 7. The Terror Within II is not as good as the first but it´s a pretty decent sequel. Andrew Stevens give us more action and more T & A than the first The Terror Within. The plot is pretty similar to the previous flick but expands the world as we meet more suvivors, scavengers and so on.


DVD review: Half Moon (2010)

Rose (Tori Black in her first role outside of the adult film industry) is a down-on-her-luck prostitute who s short on cash. When she hears of a mysterious client named Jacob (Marek Matousek) who pays a large sum of money for one night in a hotel, she goes against her better judgment and takes the assignment. At the hotel, Jacob proves to be a strange client: he´s willing to pay up front, and more interested in honest conversation than anything else. Then, just as Rose begins to feel at ease, she learns that her latest trick is about to undergo a transformation by the light of the full moon and she s about find herself trapped in close quarters with a terrifying monster. Half Moon is written and directed by Jason Toler. The acting is decent, this is the first time I´ve seen anything with Tori Black, I didn´t know much about her except that she´s in the adult filmindustry and with that in mind I didn´t have very high expectations regarding her performance/acting skills but she´s actually pretty good and is quite believable in her role. The camerawork, editing and soundtrack is pretty decent.I´m sure that some viewers might be put off due to the fact that Half Moon is slow, dialogue-laden and most of it takes place in one room with two characters. And there is very little werewolf action and there is only some very brief gore (practical make-up fx). In my opinion the werewolf design is pretty decent and I do love that it is practical man in suit design but the transformation scene is pretty bad.  Plenty of T & A in this, mostly provided by the Tori Black who also has a seductive dance-scene and a prolonged softcore sex-scene with Marek Matousek.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD release from Vicious Circle Films, Breaking Glass Pictures.
Rating: 3½ out of 7. I enjoyed this. It was very different from what I thought it was going to be. And on a finishing note, Tori Black is f*cking gorgeous, I simply couldn´t take my eyes off of her when she is on the screen (even when fully clothed) and her acting is a lot better than might be expected. Recommended to fans of character driven horror that focuses more on suspense than blood and guts.


DVD review: Don't Answer the Phone (1980)

A Vietnam veteran/photographer (Nicholas Worth) terrorizes Los Angeles by going around strangling young women in their homes while taunting psychologist Lindsay Gale (Flo Gerrish) by calling her radio call-in show to describe his mysogynistic ways. meanwhile, police detectives are close behind the psycho hoping he´ll slip up and make a mistake. Don't Answer the Phone is written by Michael D. Castle and Robert Hammer who also is the director. The acting is okay but the bulky, menacing Nicholas Worth does a pretty good job. We know all along that he's the maniac as they show who the killer is from the beginning, this flick has some similarities to William Lustig´s classic Maniac (1980) but this can't compete with it. I love the look of the flick, it´s nicely shot and edited and in parts made "guerilla style" without the necessary permits and so on. The soundtrack is very good and effective. There is no real suspense in this, partly due to the fact that the killer is known to the viewer from the start.There is some intentional comedy and slapstick, comic relief, that almost ruins the flick for me. While it´s pretty violent but it´s actually quite tame and there is only brief gore in the form of some squibs, this due to the fact that our killer chooses to strangle his victims BEFORE raping them. Most of the violence is off-screen but we do get clues regarding the killers modus operandi through the dialogue spoken. There is gratuitous nudity, plenty of topless nudity on display, provided by various actresses.
This review is based upon the region 1 DVD released by BCI video.
Rating: 5 out of 7. Don't Answer the Phone has a pretty nasty, gritty and sleazy vibe to it but in some parts it is kind of disappointing and it has got a sleazy reputation that it in my opinion it doesn't really deserve. The attempts at comic relief are cringe-worthy. In my opinion Don't Answer the Phone   would have been better and nastier with a consistent gritty tone and perhaps a little bit more graphic violence.


Saturday 15 September 2012

Review: Feed A (2012)

First I´d like to thank Clarke Mayer for providing me with a screener.
A S.W.A.T. team answers a call for a missing police officer sent out on a domestic disturbance call. What they find is anything but routine. Feed A is written Dale Devino, Risa Pappas and Clarke Meyer who also is the director. The plot is somewhat similar to [Rec] ² (2009) and this is also shot Point of view, the S.W.A.T. team is followed by a camera operator, so there is a lot of shaky cam. The acting is good, the filmmakers use sight, sound and the setting to good effect. There is some brief but quite nice gore, mostly seen in the background as we see victims of carnage. The creatures fx design is pretty cool and we only see glimpses of them which is good (it always dangerous to overexpose your monsters). I think that the filmmakers use both practical and computer gendered fx. There is no T & A in this.
This review is based upon a DVD-R screener provided by Clarke Mayer.
Rating: 6 out of 7. I enjoyed this and in my opinion Feed A has huge potential, I think that this could be successfully developed into a feature length film. I look forward to see more from Clarke Mayer.


Friday 14 September 2012

Upcoming on Independent Flicks: Omega Entertaiment Special

I will soon have a Nico Mastorakis/Omega Entertaiment Special here on Independent Flicks.
There will be reviews of: