Archive for the 'Action' Category

Nov

posted by admin | November 25, 2007 | 80's movies, Action, B-movie Reviews, B-movies

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Death Wish 3

“ok tell me again which end the bullets come out of?”

After the carnage of another Thanksgiving day bloated and sleepy, I couldn’t stomach another gruesome horror movie blood bath so instead sat down with a copy of the vigilante movie Death Wish 3. Nothing like a Charles Bronson film to help regulate the old digestive tract. Have I seen the first 2 yet? nope…I figured third times the charm though and really do I need to understand the intricate plots of the first two movies to understand this film? It’s pretty much Charles Bronson with a big gun shooting up bad guys who have poor aim. That really sums up most of the plot of this movie. But what a glorious ballet of old western style vigilante shootouts I’ve ever seen.

Charles Bronson plays Pual Kersey who is accused of a crime he didn’t commit while visiting an old friend in a bad part of town. (acting without a license?). Kersey is arrested but offered a deal by the head balding cop of which there is many. He can murder all the street villains he wants as long as he occasionally calls in and lets the cops know about it. Sounds like a fair deal so Kersey moves into an apartment building in the mean part of the town that looks like a demilitarized zone. The building is occupied mostly by elderly people harboring giant shotguns and pistols and addictions to stuffed cabbage just waiting for a crazy man in a mustache to lead them to destroy the neighbor youth. When Senior Citizens go bad.

The neighborhood is ruled by a gang leader known as the Fraker who played by Gavan “check out my haircut” O’Herlihy. The gangs dressed in a variety of strange ensembles they found at a bargain bin costume store harass the residents and sneak thorugh windows stealing TV sets. Obviously their punishment should be death by a 52 magnum! So Kersey lays down his own law and sets up some mcgyver-like boobie traps for them. people are stabbed, shot with machine guns, thrown from rooftops, set on fire, ran over by cars, beaten with chains, blown-up with missile launcher, kicked, strangled, bludgeoned, and there’s even a few mighty evil glares exchanged. Between all the carnage Kersey even falls in love with a public defender played by Deborah Raffin who is young enough to be his daughter. After they spend the night together she dies in a horrible car accident only to further the revenge fuel for the fire and get back to the killing. The movie finale is great with a huge death toll on the gangs side while Bronson and his magnum walk through the city streets picking off bad guys like some sort of shoot-em up videogame.

I can’t say this is a great movie. In fact it’s pretty laughable but worth watching for the battle royal at the end. Also listen for the insane 80’s soundtrack…everything is emphasized with a 80’s Casio keyboard riff chord even when someone flashes their headlights it apparently needs some music support. Absolutely hilarious.

Keep an eye out for…

– renaissance festival reject gang members
– home tooth removal kits
– extreme foot acupuncture
– geriatric gun control
– reverse mowhawk tattoos
– spikes to the forehead
– extreme stuffed cabbage dinners
– missile launcher pest control
– gratuitous use of an 80’s soundtrack

Charles Bronson has only two speeds, walk and kill.

rated 7.2 out of 10 for the movie

Check out the trailer for Death Wish 3

Sep

posted by admin | September 18, 2007 | 70's movies, Action, B-movie Reviews, B-movies, Cult Film, Cult movies, Uncategorized

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Gone in 60 Seconds

“If stealing cars doesn’t work out, I plan to convert this place into an AppleBee’s”

I learned to drive a stick on my 69 Camaro back in the late 80’s. I was 16 and felt indestructible but really had no business being behind the wheel of such a fine tuned performance machine. Luckily my Dad trusted me that I wouldn’t wrap the bumper around a tree and took me out on a back road for some driving lessons in humility. This was so just woodland creatures could point and laugh. I stalled and stopped quite a few times before getting that engine to actually push the car down the road. Once I did, I realized the thrill of a driving a street machine so I was hooked and never looked back. But my how times have changed, now I drive a mini-van and attend PTA meetings. So soccer mom’s best watch out for the mini-van man cruiser.

Vickinski certainly didn’t need driving lessons in gone in 60 Seconds. This original 40 minute chase extravaganzas with 58 minutes of horrible b-movie schlock padding. Vickinski is a professional car thief played by the multi talent H.B. Halicki. HB directed, produced, wrote, distributed and starred in this giant ad for effective car collision insurance. I think he even did the catering. The deal is his team of car thieves have to steal 46 cars for some insurance scams, one of which is a 1973 Mustang Mach 1, which they’ve codenamed Eleanor. Eleanor seemed to be all around town though. The city apparently has more Yellow 73 mustangs per capita than any other city in the world. They’re standard issued to people like the Peter Frampton Comes Alive album.

So Vickinski gets multiple chances to steal the mean muscle machine and eventually succeeds but somehow forgets to disable it’s car alarm. So the cops with their superior observation skills start chasing him…and chasing him…and oh yeah more chasing. Hundred’s of cars are trashed, crashed, and burned. Lawsuits are being filed everywhere. The Mustang takes quite a beating as well but keeps on going like an Energizer bunny on crack. If Ford Motors built cars like that today maybe they wouldn’t be begging on the street for spare change.

It’s funny seeing the pedestrians standing around in the film as they’re obviously there to just to watch a movie getting filmed. Especially look the big jump finale for a huge crowd on the hillside. Did they pay for tickets to that event? I guess the director wants us to believe large groups of people congregate randomly near highways for potential traffic accidents.

This was a great film if you can endure the first half of porn-actor quality acting and constant Polish ethnic slandering but as soon as that Mustang revs it’s engine, get ready for a ride.

Keep an eye out for…
– chop shop wall-o-porn
– gratuitous use of polish slurs
– road-sweeper sized sideburns
– car crusher kung-fu
– towed! in 60 seconds
– the fast and the frizzy hairstyles
– boat sized pimp cars
– flour bag o-rama

“The hair-do’s in this movies were so large that the actors looked like frizzy oranges on toothpicks.”

rated 8.1 out of 10 for the movie

Check out the trailer for Gone in 60 Seconds

Sep

posted by admin | September 12, 2007 | 80's movies, Action, B-movie Reviews, B-movies, Cult Film, Cult films, Cult movies, Kung-fu

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Big Trouble in Little China

“Oh no… not another one of my gas attacks.”

Why do my fortune cookies always give me such vague predictions. “You will enjoy prosperity and good health.” Uh… okay when? It might as well say “You will have breakfast and you will be full and enjoy a brisk walk to the front door from your car.” Let’s get some specifics. How about…”avoid pork on Wednesday or it will give you botulism” or “Don’t go hiking on Saturday with granola bars in your pocket or you will be mauled by a bear” But nooo…I only get to know that my lucky numbers are 6-23-56-7. Not even enough numbers for a Lotto ticket.

Kurt Russel should have read his fortune cookie a little closer. “Avoid lawyers who look like Kim Cattrall and green eyed Chinese woman. Go home and take a nap.” But Kurt’s Character Jack Burton, just can’t help finding Big Trouble in Little China. Jack and his friend Wang Lee are at the airport to pickup Wang’s green eye girlfriend only to end up getting her and a couple of other ladies kidnapped by a local gang of sunglass wearing crip gang wanna-be’s. So much for Jack’s introductory demonstrations of heroics. Later they attempt track them down while driving the narrow streets of San Francisco in Jacks’ Giant Pork Chop Express Semi Truck. Not exactly being stealthy, they stumble upon an impromptu Chinese street war. Safe in the confines of the truck they watch the live kung-fu show as if only missing their buckets of popcorn and some gum on the floor.

Suddenly some supernatural powered fighting masters appear out of sky like rejects from Mortal Kombat and start unleashing their own Wang-chung style of justice. Dressed in oversize baskets hats from Pier One Imports, these demon gods can shoot electricity from their finger tips, spin claws of death at their enemy, and fly through the air via some not so well hidden special f/x wires. There’s also the head demon, Lopan who turns out to be the ghost of a living old guy waiting in an underground temple for a green eye Chinese girl that he can sacrifice. Then he can become mortal again and rule the world through a series glowing sword rituals. Confused yet? Don’t worry because Jack is just as confused, probably even more so but that won’t stop him from attempting to kick some supernatural butt.

Jack realizes his hero limitations yet again when he loses his truck to the street gang and is momentarily blinded by Lopan’s secret eyes on high-beam defense move. Man this guy can’t keep track of anything. Finally coming to their senses he and Wang enlist a small army of yellow bandanna wearing martial art experts and a local tour bus driver/alchemist named Egg “overeasy” Shento to find the girls and more importantly help Jack find his truck. They travel to the underworld via a conveniently place firepole and encounter a variety of monstrous roadblocks along the way including a rabid Orangutang, a floating orb of eyeballs, and the black blood of the earth (big clue.. it ain’t oil.)

Jack and Wang spend a lot of time blindfolded and stuck in wheel chairs conversing with an extremely geriatric senior center escapee or having to hold their breath for a variety of underwater magic escapes. Eventually there’s a big battle-royal in the underground temple ala 80’s neon style resulting in lots of aerial sword play, gun fire, and explosive stone throwing. Can Jack and Wang escape the evil clutches of Lopan, save the girls, and find Jack’s beloved truck? Will Kim Cattrall survive to make movies like Mannequin and City Limits?

This is definitely one of John Carpenter’s greatest cult films. Even if it’s been a while since you’ve seen it, you’ll definitely enjoy checking it out again. It really holds up to the test of time just like that box of Chinese takeout still in your fridge.

Keep an eye out for…
– impromptu kung-fu street brawls
– gang members in ridiculous sunglasses
– handicap accessible ancient underground temples
– Buddha vandalisms
– giant rabid monkeys
– floating eyeball spheres
– explosive weight gain 2000
– static electric kung-fu
– glowing old guys stuck in wheelchairs
– firepoles to netherworlds
– Chinese buffets with $1.99 all you can eat specials

“I have a black belt in feng-shui! Stop your evil ways or I will arrange you furniture to achieve harmony with the environment!”

rated 9.3 out of 10 for the movie

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Check out the trailer for Big Trouble in Little China

Sep

posted by admin | September 2, 2007 | 80's movies, Action, B-movie Reviews, B-movies, Sci-Fi

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Trancers

“I’m thinking about having my shoulders lengthened. Any problems with narrow doorways?”

In the future when I regain consciousness from my cryo-freezing I’ll easily tell how long I’ve been asleep simply by the size of the shoulder pads people are wearing around me. Seems movies in the 1980’s denoted the future by making everything bigger…bigger hair, bigger cars, brighter neon lights, and huge shoulder pads. The movie Trancers supports my theory.

Jack Deth played by Tim Thomerson is a cop in the future who is tracking an evil crimelord known as Whistler in the remains of Los Angeles after the big quake. Whistler while not exactly sounding like an evil mastermind has the power to convert people into zombie creatures known as Trancers much like the power of an Amway pep rally.

Whistler had transferred his consciousness back to the 1980’s rent-a-cop to kill the ancestor’s of the leaders of the future so he can return and gain control of the city. You can almost hear James Cameron’s lawyer’s warming up their typewriters. Jack is enlisted by the government to get sent back in time to track down Whistler and bring him back to stand trial before he kills all of the line-back inspired fashion leaders of the future.

Jack wakes up in one of his own distant relatives who happens to be dating Helen Hunt and amazingly he’s not turned into Paul Reiser. After defeating a trancified Santa Claus at local mall Helen’s character, Leena reluctantly join Jack on his quest to save future LA. I think if she had seen how lame the future gets, she might have changed her mind. Jack is packin’ heat, wearing raincoats in 90 degree weather, and is equipped with a watch that can freeze time for 10 seconds which also gives the director the added benefit of padding the film. He also can magically make his car stay in the very center of the road while he swings the steering wheel around like a drunk sailor navigating a storm (see video clip sample below.)

Unfortunately the targeted ancestors are getting picked off left and right while Jack is side tracked by Leena who takes him on scooter rides through geriatric apartments, or to punk rave parties, and near death tanning/surf parties. They also end up kidnapping homeless unemployed baseball players and forcing them to take showers. It must be a L.A. thing.

This movie inspired 5 sequels which is an amazing feat of direct-to-video magic even for Full Moon Entertainment whose motto is “we skip the theaters and pass the crap directly onto you.” I say check it and watch out for that crazy looking dude with bad skin sitting across from you. He could be a Trancer…or he just wants to sign you up with Amway. It’s hard to tell the difference.

Keep an eye out for…
– shoulder pads of THE FUTURE!
– middle aged punk ravers
– Santas gone wild
– flame broil settings for tanning booths
– scooter kung-fu
– gratuitous use of neon lights
– drunk underground baseball games
– loose steering convertibles

“the new Trance-o-matic, it dice, it slices, it can make it’s own direct to video sequels.”

rated 6.8 out of 10 for the movie

Check out this amazing clip from “Trancers”

Jul

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Deepstar Six

“Dead Lobster, For the sea food killer in you”

I think the most prevalent signs of the apocalypse happened back in the 80’s. Reganomics, the band Wham!, and the sudden occurrence of a multitude of underwater monster movies including the Abyss, Leviathan, and this seafood disaster called DeepStar Six.

Greg Evigan plays “no first name” McBride, a scraggly lumber jack navy pilot waiting to get out from deep sea duty to return topside for some well deserved McRest. Yes the same Greg Evigan from the horrifying tv show “My Two Dads.” I believe that show was canceled right after “Alf” thankfully.

McBride is a part of a group of underwater military rejects including a Amish looking porn peddler, a Russian scientist cranked up on Red Bulls, and resident scientist babe Nia Peebles who appears to have stumbled onto the wrong movie set by accident.

The story revolves around a poorly planned deep sea missile base the underwater team is supposed to setup on the sea floor but discover an ancient cavern instead. In the tradition of other film’s underwater caverns you always get a malevolent mutant sea creature thrown in for free. So get your bibs and shell hammers ready because there’s not enough butter to stop this lobster mutant.

The crazy crustacean attacks submarines, swims faster than a missile and infiltrates the DeepStar Six base via chomping on canned spam victims and a quick snack of Ms. fruity Peebles. The remaining survivors, which unfortunately includes Mr. Evigan, load up on their stock piles of shotguns and co2 tipped spears to take on Mr. Crabs now blocking their way to freedom.

A lot of the characters are cheaply killed off through a series of accidents mostly due to a weasely character named Snyder who trips into people with co2 canister tipped spears and accidentally detonates nearby nuclear bombs. Snyder freaks out and tries to get to the surface in an emergency escape pod before he should properly decompress….
pop goes the weasel.

The remaining survivors must battle the monster while figuring out a way to escape to the surface before the base has it’s own nuclear meltdown or they run out of air. Can the movie budget handle all of this?

This film wasn’t as great as I remember when I saw it in my local theater as a teenager. With very little plot and gallons of of water, it’s directed by the same guy that brought us Friday the 13th so I had hopes that a hockey masked scuba diver would arrive on a submarine and clean house. That would have made the movie more interesting and maybe now I wouldn’t have such a craving for buttery lobster. I say check it out and order a side of shrimp.

Keep an eye out for…
– underwater door crushing
– scuba diver chomping
– 2 accidental underwater nuclear explosions
– death by jiffy-pop de-compression
– emergency CPR (Crustacean Pulminary Resuscitation)
– pool party strobe lights
– lobster harpooning
– explosive c02 spear to the chest

“This movie defines deep sea doodie”

rated 6.7 out of 10 for the movie

Learn more about this movie at imbd.com

Check out this riveting clip from DeepStar Six. Snyder’s response at the end is priceless.

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