Archive for the 'Bad movie' Category

Sep

Comments Off on “Killdozer” Rest Stop Review Edition

This t-shirt from fright rags is actually scarier than the whole movie.

Back in the 70’s and early 80’s there was a rash of machines gone wild movies. There was a demon Lincoln in “The Car”, a stalking semi-truck in “Duel” and some radioactive big rigs in “Maximum Overdrive.” One movie often over looked though was “Killdozer.” This 1974 made for TV movie revolved around the idea that construction equipment while incredibly loud and slow can also be an effective stalking killing machine.  In reality it’s about as effective as an overweight ninja…..if that Ninja is flatulent….and you’re an inanimate object like a potted plant.

A group of construction workers are clearing land on an island making room for what must be dozens of  strip malls when a meteorite suddenly strikes their work site. Thankfully, 70’s star Robert Urich is there to save the day and tries to bulldoze over the big hunk of pulsating space rock. The meteorite goes mini super nova and transfers it’s glow into the bulldozer leaving a fondue faced Robert Urich to die an agonizing made for TV death. Back at the workers camp, Clint Howard is our reluctant baritoned hero. He’s a construction foreman with a drinking problem (shocking I know). After the accident he begins to suspect the strange humming bulldozer might have some homicidal tendencies but feels better to just keep it a secret. He’s not too surprised when it trashes their camp the next day and turns one of his men into a human burrito stuffed in a drainage pipe. The rest of the men flee (walk briskly) to slightly higher ground since the bulldozer’s greatest weakness is slight inclines and can only travel about 8mph. These guys aren’t the sharpest tools in the shed though and devise increasingly dumb ways to combat the malevolent machine including starting a fire that it bulldozes right over or trying to drive a truck full of explosives into it. After a failed  game of chicken with their army jeep the two survivors decide to battle Killdozer with a digger crane in what can only amount to the lamest game of rock em’ sock em’ robots ever. Couldn’t they just wait for the thing to run out of gas? A riding lawnmower is scarier than this movie. Let’s check out the Roadside Attractions: Deep fried Urich, Jeep wrangling, Rock-slide Fu, Glow rocks, Drain tube crushing, Electroshock oil change, Bulldozer hit and run..er..I mean mozy along. Retroman says check it out…but if a homicidal bulldozer is ever barreling down on you at tops speeds, be sure to step aside…after a while…ya know when you feel like it. Take your time though, there’s no rush.

You can watch the entire movie on YouTube. Shockingly, nobody has threatened to take it down. They probably figured nobody’s watching it except for the Urich family. Part 1 is below and the rest are available on that Youtube site all the cool kids are talking about.

trailers

dripper

Looking for hard to find cult movies and unreleased DVD’s of some vintage b-movies then check out www.superstrangevideo.com. They provide many of the movies we review here at the site and will give you a great price on whatever film you’re trying to track down.

Aug

posted by admin | August 15, 2010 | B-movies, Bad movie, Cult Film, Horror movies, Slasher, Slasher films, Uncategorized

Comments Off on Return to Sleepaway Camp

Comebacks usually aren’t a good thing. Just ask boxer, Sugar Ray Leonard, who stepped into the boxing ring after being retired for several years and got knocked out by Hector Macho Camacho before the first round ended. Well, for “legendary” director Robert Hiltz (How’d he get that title, anyway?) his return to the camera after being away for nearly 20 years is just as disastrous. Now, I’m not saying that the first three “Sleepaway Camp” films will ever earn a spot on the AFI (American Film Institute) 100 Best Movies of All Time, but the earlier movies, unlike this latest installment, were at least filled with funny dialogue, dark humor, cool death scenes, and plenty of hot chicks who never had a problem showing their goods.


“Return to Sleepaway Camp” (RTSC) is a direct sequel to the first “Sleepaway Camp” that ignores the two “Sleepaway Camp” installments in between (“SC 2: Unhappy Campers” and “SC 3: Teenage Wasteland”) much the same way that “Jason Goes to Hell” pretended that “Jason Takes Manhattan” didn’t exist. You know it always pisses me off when writers, directors, and movie studios pull this kind of crap with movie franchises. Just keep the series somewhat consistent and make a sequel that picks up where the last one left off. But believe it or not, this is the least of the movie’s problems. Anyway, let me get back to my review. So the “plot” for RTSC involves a “mysterious killer” who is offing campers and counselors in a variety of boring and uninspiring ways at yet another summer camp. Hiltzik tries to keep anyone left watching the movie guessing by having Angela, I mean the “mysterious killer”, wear a ridiculous disguise and use a voice decoder that sounds like a Speak ‘n’ Spell with dying batteries to conceal their real identity. But trust me, this isn’t “Clue’ Goes to Sleepaway Camp.” Felissa Rose, who played Angela in the original “Sleepaway Camp”, stars in this installment, so anyone with the intelligence level of an amoeba (sorry if I offended any amoebas out there) should know who’s doing the killing this time around. And while I’m on the subject of killing, “Sleepaway” films usually have memorable kills, right? Well not in this sequel. Thanks to some very bad directing and editing, everybody takes so freakin’ long to die. Any kind of suspense or “wow” factor from a death scene is ruined because the camera cuts back and forth to whatever object is getting ready to kill its next victim several times before a death actually occurs. It’s as if Hiltzik wanted to make sure he didn’t loose the audience. Wishful thinking on his part because hopefully anyone who made the mistake of renting this cinematic turd either turned it off before they wasted too much time, or got hammered after the film’s first death scene and passed out.

A few of the original cast members who survived the first “Sleepaway Camp” return for this sequel, but even they can’t salvage this horrible movie because it’s twenty years later, and they still can’t act. Felissa Rose, Jonathan Tiersten, and Paul DeAngelo really should have taken at least a couple of warm-up acting gigs like commercials before signing on to do this movie. Their performances are so bad it makes the acting in “Troll 2” seem Shakespearean in comparison. If any of them want to show up for the next sequel they should avoid further embarrassment and just make cameos as newspaper clippings or framed photographs, like Sean Connery did in “Kingdom of the Crystal Skulls.” The movie still had one last chance to redeem itself with a cool finale, but unfortunately what we get is a predictably lame “reveal” ending that is another huge disappointment in a movie full of disappointments, especially when compared to the gender-bender-ender of the original “Sleepaway Camp.”

For a film that was delayed more times than a Britney Spears comeback, this film sure did feel rushed and thrown-together. I read a whole laundry list of “reasons” why the film’s release date kept getting pushed back. First it was Hiltzik wanted to get the effects just right. Then re-shoots were needed. Next it was that there were problems with the CGI again, etc. Well I’ve seen the movie, and the visual effects really don’t look that bad. Movies of the Week shown on the Sy-Fy Channel have worst CGI in them. After watching the movie for about 2 mins. I found out the real reason for all of the delays, and it’s that the movie sucks, plain and simple. There’s just no other way to put it. Instead of worrying about the quality of the visual effects and whatever else, Hiltzik’s priority should’ve been to make a movie that was actually watchable.

I was really hoping that poor DVD sales for RTSC would close this camp for good. But I’ve recently read that Hiltzik unfortunately has another 3-D “Sleepaway” sequel in production, which is a real shame because it probably means that Michael Simpson who did “SC: 2” and “SC: 3” won’t get the opportunity to do his supernatural sequel called “Sleepaway Camp: Berserk” any time soon, or possibly ever. His idea sounds like it would be a fun movie to me. Click here for the movie’s brief plot synopsis.

If you want to visit a camp this summer, don’t return to Sleepaway Camp and go to Crystal Lake instead.

roadside attractions

  • Gratuitous use of the line “Your a$$ stinks.”
  • Fart-lighting 101
  • Killer wears a ridiculous disguise in between murders
  • Death by bed of nails
  • Wooden stake to the eye
  • Issac Hayes as Charlie The Chef
  • 1 Human Roman Candle
  • 1 Super-lame ending
totals

1

blood
BLOOD

About a gallon of the red stuff

2

beast
BEASTS

A gender-confused killer and a bully.

0

blood
BREASTS

None but there were plenty of nicely wrapped melons

1.25 OVERALL
dripper

Check out the trailer for “Return to Sleepaway Camp”

trailers



dripper
Aug

posted by admin | August 8, 2010 | 80's movies, B-movies, Bad movie, Guest Review, Horror movies

Comments Off on Guest Review: Poltergiest 3

angeliqueAngelique (www.twitter.com/Laughing_Bones)

“I’ve been a horror fan since my mom went to see Cujo in the theaters while pregnant with me.  That set the stage for my love of the good, the bad, and the downright ugly, and I’ve seen some of the worst and best horror movies out there, and since I was old enough, I would hold movie marathons and make my friends watch them as well.  I  When I’m not writing about horror, I blog (http://theculinaryadventuresofdangergirl.com.blogspot.com/) about whatever comes to mind.  Otherwise, you can find me in and about the wilderness of East Tennessee, preparing for the inevitable revolution/zombie apocalypse.”

Lost Highway Welcomes Angelique to the our little roadside detour of b-movie cool and without further ado…whatever ado means…here’s her review of Poltergiest 3: Why didn’t it stop at 1.

Poltergiest 3
Let me start by saying that if Carol Anne was my daughter, I’d drive her out to the middle of nowhere, leave her, and hope for the best.

OH WAIT!  That’s just what her lovely parents did in Poltergeist III, only they replaced “middle of nowhere” with “Chicago” and “hope for the best” with “foist her on your sister, her husband, and his daughter, because we can’t take it anymore.”

Following the events of Poltergeist and Poltergeist II, the story opens with Carol Anne (Heather O’Rourke) in a posh high-rise penthouse in the heart of Chicago, living with her aunt, her uncle, and step-cousin.  She is obviously a burden on the family, but they all try to put on happy faces as she sits around and plays with that damn Speak-n-Spell all the time.  I swear, when she’s not dealing with the threat of ghosts, the kid does nothing else!  I lost interest in mine when I realized it wouldn’t “say” curse words, but she can’t get enough of it!  Well, I suppose this is what happens when televisions, clown dolls, and toy phones are off-limits to little girls who attract evil spirits from the other side.  Ahem, back to the story.  This is only the beginning, for there is danger afoot, and strange things begin happening with gusto, which everyone promptly ignores.

Poltergiest 3Carol Anne has the dubious honor of being enrolled in a special school for gifted children, lorded over by the insidious Dr. Satan-er, Seaton, rather.  Seaton.  Dr. Seaton (Richard Fire), who likes to impress other psychiatrists with his acumen and impeccable goatee, makes Carole Anne out to be some Mesmer-esque master of minds, has inadvertently awakened the ghost of that crazy Reverend Kane (Nathan Davis, and an assortment of rubber masks), who will stop at nothing to get Carol Anne to lead them into the light.

This, of course, has alerted Tangina (Zelda Rubenstein), who gets on a plane immediately to help her, because Dr. Seaton is an asshole.

Bruce (Tom Skerritt) and Pat (Nancy Allen) have fights over Carol Anne between dealing with the various technical problems the building is going through; he likes her there, she wants her gone, and resents her sister for foisting her crazy child off onto them during a most stressful time in their yuppie lives.  If it weren’t for all the ghosts and such, this could have been a movie of the week about the benefits of acceptance and family change.  It’s not, but the writers certainly didn’t realize that.

Donna (Lara Flynn Boyle) is miffed because she has to watch Carol Anne and her red footie pajamas all night, but Carol Anne uses her mental might to convince Donna to go ahead to the party, she’s just gonna be sitting around, you know, playing with her speak and spell, maybe slipping into the liquor cabinet…wait, that didn’t happen.  I wish it did, for it would have given her a little more character depth.  Donna applies too much eyeliner, and Carol Anne leans into the bathroom door to give her some makeup tips.  Then, there’s a knock at the mysteriously closed bathroom door, and she opens it to see…CAROL ANNE!  What just happened?  Never mind, she has a party to attend.  After arriving at the party with her collar popped and deeming it dullsville, she uses a handy set of master keys to break into the pool and throw a better party.  She and her afro-sporting boyfriend Scott (Kip Wentz) sneak off to rob the grocery store of their cheese-doodles and Coors Light while upstairs, Carol Ann has run into some trouble.

Kane begins to torment Carol Ann in the apartment, and I can’t say that the special effects were all that ‘special,’ because 90% of them are done with dry ice fog and flashing lights, but they’re scary enough for Carol Anne, and she runs away.  She’s seen on camera by Donna and Scott, who were trying to make out in the security room holding armloads of groceries, and they follow her to the parking garage.

Let me warn you right now: throughout the rest of the movie, you will hear the name “Carol Ann” about EIGHTEEN MILLION TIMES.v

She goofs around, running backwards until she steps into a puddle.  WATCH OUT, IT’S A REFLECTIVE SURFACE!  Oops, too late; zombie hands jerk her down, Donna and Scott arrive just in time to provide a not quite convincing rescue attempt, and they all get pulled into the puddle.

Poltergiest 3

From this point on, things get a little flaky.  Scott reappears and is crazy, screaming about Donna.  Dr. Seaton comes to the building and tries to analyze him.  Tangina comes in and rubs her necklace some more.  She spouts some exposition about love and how it’ll set the girls free or something, (I don’t know, I quit listening for a minute), until she started talking about the evil beyond the bedroom door.  I thought for sure she was talking about the Speak-N-Spell, but no, she meant Kane, and the mirrors.  She and Dr. Seaton face-off, then something spooky happens and the evil reaches out and deep-fries Tangina.  We immediately have an excellent Lara Flynn Boyle freak-out as she climbs out of the still-steaming corpse of our favorite magical midget.  Arguably the best part of the movie, second only to when she pushes Dr. Seaton down the elevator shaft after he goes chasing after the reflection of Carol Anne.  Come to find out, that’s not really Donna or Scott, but doppelgangers who like to make out sloppily, then rip each others faces off.

The last half of the movie is spent following Bruce and Pat around, watching them get locked into large freezers, fighting undead livestock, almost drowning, snatching necklaces from an apparition of Tangina, being teleported into frozen, snowy parking garages and being chased by possessed cars. I’m not sure what mirrors and ice have in common, but for some reason they go together like peanut butter and jelly in this flick.  Are they playing up the idea that ghosts suck the heat out of the environment for energy?  It isn’t ever explained, aside from the light being cold.

During the final showdown in Carol Anne’s foggy room, Carol Anne shows up and spouts some angsty mess about how nobody loves her or wants her but Kane, but it’s a ruse to get the magical necklace from Pat.  She disappears,  then Pat gets strangled by her own reflection, pimp-slapped by Kane, sees the whole family lying around dead, and freaks out.  Tangina appears yet again, spouting more about this love thing, and how it’ll save everyone, and how she can end this whole thing by leading him into the light, and could have done it all along.  SHOULDN’T SHE HAVE DONE THAT TWO FLIPPING MOVIES AGO??  Why’d she leave this poor girl to be tormented?  Question for the ages, I suppose.

If there’s one thing I hate, its when horror movies try to have some kind of redeeming value.  I wanna be scared, not actually learn anything (except for maybe a few new ways that I could potentially die or enter an alternate dimension).

roadside attractions

  • Gratuitous One-way mirrors
  • Disembodied hand coffee-mug flinging
  • Elevator shaft Swan Dive
  • Undead livestock
  • Chicken-fried psychic
  • Corpse burrowing
  • Face peeling
  • Necklace rubbing
  • Decapitation by shovel
  • Face peeling
  • Head melting
totals

0

blood
BLOOD

They flash-fried Tangina

4

beast
BEASTS

I’m including the Speak-N-Spell here, you guess the rest of ’em!

0

blood
BREASTS

Lara Flynn Boyle doesn’t have much more than mosqito bites anyway

3.0 OVERAL

When the scariest thing in the movie is a Speak-n-Spell, it’s the best you can do.
dripper

Check out the trailer for “Poltergiest 3”

trailers

dripper
May

Comments Off on Video Store Memories: Video Unlimited

Almost every B-movie and horror movie fan out there has a story of how they were introduced to movies–like a cool uncle who let them watch “Porky’s” where they saw their very first set of boobies. For me, I became hooked on B-movies and horror movies after my first visit to Video Unlimited, a video store near where I lived. As a young boy many a weekend and summer were spent watching videos that I rented from both stores; they had two locations. I was very fortunate to have a really cool Mom who would let me watch any kind of movie, regardless of the genre (except porn). Hey, even the coolest Moms have to draw the line somewhere. My Mom became even cooler when I found out she was a big horror movie buff. On her days off from managing the drive-in (Rosen’s), she would usually be watching horror movies with me. Now how many kids can honestly say their Mom likes horror movies?

So, let me get back to my Video Unlimited memories. The one thing that always amazed me about both stores was that even though they weren’t very big, the staff magically found a way to somehow store and showcase thousands of titles. I always wondered if they had access to some kind of interdimensional portal with a limitless supply of videos. Video Unlimited’s selection was a lot like Video Vault in that whatever movie you were looking for, they usually had it or something similar to it.

Videos

And while I’m on the subject of selection, I have to mention the size of the movie rental catalog that was sitting on the front counter of the Laplata location. This thing was HUGE. Think a of a triple-decker club sandwich that is made of phone books, without the ham, lettuce, tomato, bacon, and mayonnaise. To me this catalog was my B-movie bible. I’m pretty sure that whenever I went near it the book was enshrined in a golden light and I heard celestial music coming from up above. Seriously, this catalog contained so many movies from every possible genre and sub-genre that if I live several lifetimes like the Highlander, Duncan MacLeod, I still wouldn’t see all of the movies listed in it. And when I had watched all of the current releases, or I just wanted to focus on a particular genre, this became my go-to book. The selection of the so-called “big boys” of movie rental back then and today–Blockbuster and Hollywood Video–could never compare to the impressive selection of the small Mom-and-Pop video stores. Try calling Blockbuster to find out if they carry “Wood Chipper Massacre”, and the people working there won’t have a clue as to what you’re talking about.

When I moved out of the area I began going exclusively to Video Unlimited’s Waldorf location, their second store. After about a year of renting several movies on a weekly basis and talking about movies with the staff, I was asked for my imput on what B-movies and horror movies the should carry at the store. So I began making movie recommendations based on previews I had seen, articles that I read in ‘Fangoria’ (when ‘Fangoria’ was still a horror magazine), and movie screeners that I had viewed. Yes, I was given movie screeners to watch, which was one of the coolest things to me. In case you don’t know, a movie screener is an advance copy of a movie that is shown to critics and distributors. I saw a lot of screeners, but the one that comes to mind was for the movie “Seed People.” It’s basically Full Moon Entertainment’s version of “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” I remember it being an enjoyable little movie, when Full Moon actually made movies worth watching, unlike the Z-grade trash that Charles Band pimps today for a quick buck. Now if helping to select movies and viewing advance copies wasn’t awesome enough, another perk of being a loyal customer was that I had my pick of all the cool posters they had from movies, like “Silent Night, Deadly Night”, “The Fly” (Cronenberg’s version), and “Friday the 13th Part 7: The New Blood.” In addition, I also got nifty movie promos like trading cards from another Full Moon release, “Subspecies”, which I still have packed in a box somewhere today. This was way before eBay. Back then nobody really thought of this stuff as being collectible or having any real value. To the owners all it was doing at the time was taking up valuable space that could be used to store copies of movies. Now I’m sure that they probably wished they had kept a lot of these posters after seeing how popular and valuable they’ve become over the years.

Soon I got a job at Rosen’s Drive-in, and I didn’t just didn’t have as much time as I used to to watch movies, but I would still visit Video Unlimited at least once a week to say “hi” and to see if there were any new releases that caught my eye. Sure, I saw plenty of movies while working the projection booth at Rosen’s, but I could never get my fill of movies. Similar to Kirstie Alley’s relationship with food. Have you seen her lately? Yikes! She looks like she swallowed a water buffalo.

Movies

Anyway, when I started a professional haunted house attraction a short time later, I found myself with even less time. Things were so crazy that everything quickly became a blur. And before I knew it, one week, two weeks had passed by in a flash, so I decided to stop by my favorite video store to see how things were going. Well, as soon as I walked across the parking lot towards the front door I had a sinking feeling–something wasn’t right. And my feeling was confirmed when I stepped inside and saw the shelves with only a few movies scattered on each of them. All around me there was a feeding frenzy similar to Piranhas attacking a helpless swimmer at a lake resort. People were quickly grabbing and buying VHS cassettes and everything else in the store, except for the floor tiles. I didn’t ask many questions even though I was shocked and upset, because whatever I was feeling was probably nothing compared to what everybody who worked there was going through. This was their business, their livelihood. From what I was told later on the video store had been struggling for a few months. And things only got worse when their rent was raised and Blockbuster (the Walmart of video stores, which isn’t a compliment) moved into town about 300 or so feet away. The competition was simply too strong and they just couldn’t survive any longer.

To this day I don’t understand why someone didn’t tell me what was happening sooner. Maybe I could have done something to help. Though in all honesty, it probably wouldn’t have made much of a difference anyway, because the profit-driven, soulless, corporate video rental chains like Blockbuster and Hollywood Video were gaining momentum in the video rental market, and it was only a matter of time before the small Mom-and-Pop video stores like Video Unlimited would soon disappear. However, the Laplata store was able to say in business for several more years until sadly, in 2002, it was destroyed by a devastating tornado that hit the strip mall where it was located. Last I had heard the owner decided not to rebuild the business.

I hadn’t been to the Laplata location in many years, but hearing the bad news was still a real bummer. It was like loosing contact with a close friend, and then years later finding out that they had passed away. For most of my childhood these two stores had been a very important part of my life. I know it’s just a couple of video stores to most people, but the movies that I was exposed to made me, Drive-in Dan, the B-movie fan that I am today. The movies that I rented from these stores led to other interests that have carried over into adulthood, like my passion for special effects makeup after seeing Tom Savini’s masterful work in films such as “Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter”, “Dawn of the Dead”, and “The Burning.” Watching films such as “Halloween” and Dario Argento’s “Phenomena”exposed me to the unique musical styles of John Carpenter and the Italian Prog Rock band, Goblin, which I still enjoy to this day. After seeing “The Road Warrior” I was inspired to make vehicles and various contraptions using parts from miscellaneous model kits, and today I continue to create things from found objects.

I will always have fond memories of the two Video Unlimited stores. I’m glad that I grew up in the 80’s and was able to be a part of something truly awesome. Hopefully, other B-movie fans out there had their own Video Unlimited while growing up.

May

Comments Off on Dead End Drive-in: Rest Stop Review Edition

rest stop reviews

We’d like to introduce you to a new format for this and some future movie reviews. We call them Rest Stop reviews. They still have that same great snarky taste but with 50% less filling. That’s right it’s environmentally friendly blogging, and you’ll still feel like you’ve gotten a chance to stretch your legs, and empty your bladder. We’ll have more in the upcoming months but in the meantime enjoy our first Rest Stop Review of the 80’s Australian cult-film “Dead End Drive-in.” Let us know what you think, and be sure to grab yourself a snack in the vending machine on your way out.

Is that the lead singer from the Cure?

In “Dead End Drive-in” Australia shows us their continuing obsession with the  apocalypse even without Mel Gibson to save the day. The world is in economic ruin, the only lucrative business is fender bender scavenging, and everyone eats Hormel chili out of cans. A weasely little man named Crabs “cause’ that’s what his momma caught” and his dimwitted girlfriend Carmen, steal his brother’s 56 Chevy for a night out at the drive-in. Turns out the drive-in is just a disguised concentration camp for vagrants, the unemployed and new wave punks… sorta like Denny’s but with electric fencing.

Carmen shows off her fruit baskets to Crabs and pretty soon they’re doing the backseat rumba like horny koalas while the cops are stealing their tires. The next day they find themselves trapped in the drive-in with 100’s of renaissance festival rejects and all the snackshop food you could ever eat. Crab doesn’t see much of a future in professional loitering so he makes an escape plan even though Carmen would rather sit around eating banana fritters and look like a homeless Pat Benatar. She’s got a few Kangaroos loose in the top paddock if ya know what I mean. Crab steals a truck during a Klan rally and  goes postal shooting up the place and driving over homeless shanties right before he does an evil Knievel off the top of a truck ramp. Multiple car crashes with explosion, red underwear of terror, drive-in hit and runs, snackshop shoot out, tow truck stunt spectacular, Cricket bat head bashing, and extreme red Speedos. The only thing missing was Olivia Newton in leg warmers and maybe a Crocodile Hunter or two. Now there’s an 80’s Australian film I’d like to see. Retroman says take this movie for a walkabout but be sure to bring a spare tire.

trailers

dripper

About the Highway

Lost Highway is your satirical detour down the twisted back roads of b-movies and cult films reviews. learn more >>