Archive for the 'Review by Barry Goodall' Category

Mar

posted by admin | March 1, 2010 | B-movie Reviews, B-movies, Contest, Grindhouse, Review by Barry Goodall

Comments Off on Prepare to Get Bitch Slapped.

Lost Highway was helping field some questions at this past weekends live DVD release uStream party for the cast and crew of “Bitch Slap.” In case you missed it, Erin confessed her love for Lost Highway, a mime juggled chainsaws, and then America and Julia got into a vicious cat fight over a gin and tonic. Ok well maybe that’s a bit exaggerated but the cast and crew answered some great questions posed by Q&A master Maria through the Twittersphere and I think everyone had a great time being a part of it. You can see some photos from the event here.

Their fame is now your gain as Lost Highway got the just released uncut DVD and an autographed poster from the starlets to give away to a lucky reader. Simply follow us on twitter and send us your best b-movie survival tip @losthighway and you’re automatically in the running! A twitter user with the best original b-movie tip will be chosen on Saturday March 5th and be sure to check out our list of b-movie survival tips so you can come up with something new. Yeah it’s a challenge I know.

So after reading our review below, go pick yourself up a copy of “Bitch Slap” at your local store today (ask for it by name and see the interesting looks you get.) Oh and be sure to check out the exclusive promo for “Behind Bitch Slap: Buidling a Better B-movie” at the bottom of this review. Thanks to the cast/crew and a big thank you to Kristal Bailey for Letting Lost Highway get Bitch Slapped. It’s still stings but we liked it that way.

Bitch Slap

Ah the bachelor party. That rite of passage for every man who is about to enter the holy bonds and shackles of matrimony. Sure there’s always the next day stories of  couches being set on fire, waking up with a goat drinking beer out of the toilet and of course more strippers that a convention of paint removers. But unless there was some photographic evidence these guys probably didn’t even remember the night before so they most likely were that… just that stories. After all what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas…well maybe except for the syphilis. But with every bachelor party you’re gonna need the perfect bachelor movie. A testerone fueled politically incorrect scantly clad women filled movie of cool. Something that if you wife caught you watching she wouldn’t stop slapping you.

bitch slapSo move over “Roadhouse” “Bitch Slap” is the new perfect bachelor night tradition and all without waking up with a hangover or your wallet stolen. What would be considered a loving throwback to the yesterday of exploitation and grindhouse, this modern day film knows how to play it up campy-style with a sort of wink and nod to it’s audience. When it comes to the 3B’s of B-movieness, “Bitch Slap” pulls out all the punches with a lot of emphasis on the big “B” of Breasts. Wether they’re in slow motion, zoomed in, bloody, cover in dirt, hosed down it’s a definite boobcam of babeliciousness. Throw in some explosions, big guns, and samurai swords and you got yourself a guys perfect wishlist of b-movie gold.

The story revolves around 3 gorgeous girl out cruisin’ in the desert who look as though they’ve just escaped from a Victoria Secrets photo shoot. They’re on a quest to dig up a loot full of diamonds from a has been gangster whom they’ve stuffed in the trunk. Hel (Erin Cummings) is the cool as ice red headed undercover agent who seems to be the lady in charge. Trixie (Julia Voth) is a “angelic” stripper whose crotch glows like a disco ball when she’s doing the nightly grind and Camero (America Olivio) is your resident psycho- pill poppin’ criminal who at any moment might stab you with a rusty screw driver for looking at her cock eyed. Sorta like my ex-girlfriend only a bit more reserved.

Through a series of flashbacks the true identities of the girls and their intentions are revealed just as punk rockers with turrets, and naughty japanese school girls with bladed yo-yos show up for the trailer park party. A lot of time is spent digging and there’s slow mo’ glamour shooting while 3 girls gyrate and shimmy for the camera. My only response to that can be…. “Hell yeah!” and “more please!” Things are not all fun though as a growing mistrust over a secret love triangle is revealed… but hey that’s nothing that another slow mo water fight or trailer romp won’t smooth over. There’s also some plot points involving ancient demon samauri swords, killer viruses stored in lunchboxes and didn’t I see Kevin Sorbo with a bazooka? But hey you gotta rest your eyes sometime from all that cleavage fatigue.

Also keep an eye out for one of the best girl drag down brawls ever to be filmed with Zoe Belle masterly handling choreography of sweet punches, groin kicks, and hair pulling. Girls get kicked, punched, bitten, dragged and body slammed more times than a TV wrestling match so let the feminists flame mail commence.

I think all this film needs is a guest cameo of Xena the warrior princess as a nun…oh wait it’s got that too.

Sure “Bitch Slap” may play a bit like a dear Penthouse letter written by Russ Meyers and mixed in a blender with some Will E. Cyote cartoons but that’s just the perfect recipe for mindless b-movie fun. Rick Jacobson, the director never tries to pretend to make anything different and for that you’ve got to admire the guy.

Retroman Steve says check it out, and be sure to bring some extra dollar bills. There’s no cover charge but it’s got a 2 drink minimum.

roadside attractions

  • Multiple breast shots
  • 2 crotch kills with 1 groin peel out.
  • 1 death by yo-yo
  • Stripper rodeo riding
  • Cleavage cam
  • Water fights
  • Slow mo digging
  • Multiple babe brawls
  • Kevin Sorbo-ing
  • Glowing strippers
  • Turret tantrums
  • Big guns
  • Xena Warrior Nun
  • Vegas gun show spectacular
  • Trailer shagging
  • Exploding car
totals

7

blood
BLOOD

plenty of cat fight scratches

3

beast
BEASTS

Kevin Sorbo

9

blood
BREASTS

isn’t that the point of this movie?

9.4 OVERALL
dripper

“It’s kooterlicious”

Feb

Comments Off on After Midnight

after midnight

Everybody has to deal with fear. There’s the fear of snakes, fear of fire or dark places, and more people are more afraid of public speaking than actually dying. Strange how someone would rather be the person in the casket than the one delivering the eulogy, but there are a few lesser known phobias that are just as terrorizing. One such condition is Arachibutyrophobia, the overwhelming fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth and causing instantaneous death. There’s also Mulletphobia the fear of mullets and hockey hair. It’s a phobia approaching epidemic levels in certain parts of Canada. Some people also sufferer from Bananaphobia and won’t even be in the same room as the menacing yellow fruit referring to it as the “Devil’s Snack Food.” To them eating a bowl of fruit salad would be a dance with death.

Unfortunately there’s no help for me and my rare condition. I suffer from LaBeoufophobia…….it’s the irrational fear of the actor Shia LaBeouf. Ever since I saw Transformers the guy just gives me the creeps. He’s like a tiny man stuck in a teen body with facial hair and the mere thought of seeing his giant man-boy face on a 30ft screen makes me want to curl up in the fetal position. Even actors that have French sounding names make me feel queasy.

I’ve taken precautionary measures though, so as not to trigger an all out Shia-attack. I  avoid all movies starring giant talking robots. I steer clear of McDonald’s Playlands for fear a tiny Shia is hiding in in the ball pit. He’s well under their height requirement and has ninja like hiding skills. I’ve also put away all my vintage transformer toys into secure boxes for fear they will report back telepathically to Shia with my location and activities. So take heed my b-movie fans, the LaBeouf walks among us and he’s hungry searching for souls to steal. Only then can he remain perpetually 15 years old and still make movies with Megan Fox. It’s the perks of his deal with the Devil or as the unknowing public refer to him as “Michael Bay.”

Speaking of dealing with phobias. Allison (Jillian McWhirter) just signed up for a class in fear headed up by professor tall dark and creepy. After “pissing off” a frat guy by playing some Russian roulette, and threatening campus wide keg bans, Professor Derek pulls an Elvis and fakes everyone out with a staged suicide. This gets the college board of trustees’ undies in a bunch and they force him to conduct private classes in his home as punishment. Allison and her friend Cheryl along with a few others college kids who can’t find a kegger head to his house for some private tutoring. While I was holding out for virgin sacrifices or blood orgies for the extra credit, instead they get to sit around and tell scary campfire stories.

After Midnight

The first story told revolves around a couple out for a birthday celebration that decide to take the scenic route home only to get the inevitable flat tire in front of the spooky mansion. Seems that always happens in horror films. Car warranties should really cover drive by hauntings. They decide its safer to go into the house where there had been a vicious murdering spree rather than wait for a tow truck. The wife disappears upstairs, and the husband who has all the kahunas of a Don Knots starts freaking out, and sword swinging at anything that moves. Sufficient to say heads roll and the birthday bash ends on a big bummer. But hey at least he won’t have to deal with marriage counseling anymore plus he still gets cake.

After the tale of birthday beheadings we get stuck with a story about a bunch of whiny teen girls who haven’t discovered texting or the internet yet. They instead head out for a night of downtown clubbing in their 84′ Chrylser LeBaron. While trying to find a club that allows high school girls dressed like hookers, they get held hostage at an abandoned Gas n’ Go by some guard dogs, and a bum who looks a lot like Tommy Chong. Completely out of their weed stash the girls escape in their “teenmobile” which can easily achieve top speeds in the low twenties. It gives the bum plenty of time to hitch a ride on their roof to go get some snacks for his munchies. Fortunately, the girls innate driving skills slam them into a parked car sending the bum through the windshield like a test crash dummy. The relief that they’ve helped with downtown vagrancy is short lived though as the hungry guard hounds show up and turn one of the panicked girls into a doggie chew toy. The rest of them see that as the perfect time to get away but actually run out of gas, and have to hoof it to an abandoned warehouse instead. In the final standoff of lame they try to outsmart the hungry hounds in a battle of wits and hide and seek. It’s hard not to root for the dogs at that point.

after midnight

The third and final story is about a  pre-CSI Marg Helgenberger who plays Alex. She’s works at a late night call center hoping around on crutches because apparently nobody had invented message machines in the 80’s. She starts getting crank calls from a psycho with a fetish for heavy breathing, and phone cord strangling who just offed one of her only customers. Alex’s mild apathy grows to terrified victim mentality as the psycho easily takes out her best friend, and uses her as a elevator door stop. Alex starts frantically hopping around knocking out incandescent light bulbs like some sort of photo sensitive jack terrier, and winds up falling down the stair well and impaling a security guard with a wood stake. This eventually leads to a showdown back in the main office. It’s all just an obvious assassination attempt from the phone recording machine industry. AT&T workers probably tell this story to their kids at night.
After Midnight
Back in reality the college kids are now all effectively creeped out and cranked up on caffeine, and Jujubees. A power blackout forces the professor to “check the fuses” in the basement where he gets strung up like a Piñata, and is about to get flame-broiled by the frat boy he had humiliated earlier. But things go sour as frat guy chickens out, and Edward emerges from the flames as an evil skeleton with a hankering for chopping on Greek pledges. Amongst the fiery chaos Allison ditches her friends, and high tails out of the house across multiple movie sets of all the previous stories while professor “Skeletor” is in hot pursuit with an axe to grind. Yeah it started getting a bit weird around then.
“After Midnight” is not one the scarier films to come out during the anthology band wagon of “Creepshow”, and Tales form the “Darkside” but it’s still a pretty entertaining ride. Hard to believe this movie was directed by the same guy that made the Ewoks film.

Retroman Steve says check it out, and never trust a professor who wants you to stop by his place for some “extra credit work.” They inevitably turn into blood thirsty undead skeletons that will try to steal your soul. It’s all right there in the fine print of your syllabus on page 24.

roadside attractions

  • 1 accidental beheading party
  • 1 headshot
  • Multiple heads rolls
  • Pants wetting
  • Homeless joyride stunt spectacular
  • Flame broiled attack dogs
  • Teenage doggie chew toy
  • Professor Piñata
  • Body chopping with axe
totals

6

blood BLOOD

a fake headshot with exploding brain bits

5

beast BEASTS

the professor I think qualifies

0

breast BREASTS
no naughty bits
7.7 OVERALL
dripper

I believe Shia LaBeouf roughly translated in the ancient french dialect means “Hungry Like the Wolf” or “Shy of the Beef.”

Check out the trailer for After Midnight

trailers

dripper

Jan

Comments Off on Dreamscape

Dreamscape

I’ve been having trouble sleeping lately. Normally I’d attribute it to the 2 liters of Monster Energy drink I normally consume while watching schlocky late night cinema, but I’ve been cutting back on that. So now when I finally do fall asleep I have some really weird dreams. One in particular I keep having is where I’m being chased by zombies in a city and when I try to drive away my car will only go 10 mph. Sure it looks like a Lamborghini but drives like a Prius. Then I realize that I actually have the mutant power of Spiderman and used my web slinging ability to climb to the top of the Sears towers. That’s where I discover Oprah Winfrey perched like a vulture in her pants suit gnawing on a chicken leg. It figures Oprah would be the one person to survive the zombie apocalypse. So she gave me keys to a free car and a Oprah book of the month club membership and I go swinging back to down to my car. It all ends when I try to peel out, and I find my tires have been replaced with large sprinkled doughnuts and there’s a monkey dressed as a bellhop in the passengers seat singing Celine Dion songs. That’s when I wake up in a cold sweat. Sure zombies and a benevolent Oprah I can handle, but not monkeys singing “My heart will go on”. Guess I should ease up on the Chinese food before bedtime.

dreamscapeSpeaking of bad dreams. Dennis Quaid plays Alex, a psychic womanizer who uses his gift to predict the future, bet on horses and read girl’s minds. A former associate Dr. Novotny (Max von Sydow) hates seeing him squander his money on effeminate casual wear from the Penny’s catalog and gets him to join his classified government dream project instead. And you know when it’s secret and the government is involved someone is going to die. The military is using psychics to enter people’s dreams all in order to advance military science or in-dream banner ads which ever is more profitable. Alex, when he’s not gallivanting his boney torso around in his Underoos likes to play the saxophone Clinton-style and hit on lab technicians. Jane (Kate Capshaw) plays the queen of the babe lab technicians and works with Alex to sharpen his dream linking skills. They play card games, he reads her mind for a quick lite read and they get right to some train shagging during Jane’s power nap.

dreamscapeAlex starts warming up his dreamcatcher skills through some subconscious marital advising and construction stunt work all leading up to a big snake hunt in some little fat kids head. This was apparently during a time when science didn’t really need a specific purpose. Buddy has been having bad dreams of being stuck in a Tim Burton movie while being pursued by the Boogeyman and it’s been really cutting into his eating time, so Alex plugs his mind into Buddy’s brain and they do battle with a big demonic snake creature who wants to make little buddy into ground round. It’s a sort of Anne Coulter of the subconscious. Buddy succeeds in chopping the creatures head off with a big kill axe while Alex gives it a nice bear hug. I believe Buddy’s been doing a lot of free weights in his spare time.

Meanwhile back in Washington the president has been having nightmares of kids with bad acne jumping out of broom closets while nuclear blasts are going off all around them. The dreams are so bad that the president decides he wants to disarm all the nukes at the next Geneva convention. It’s obviously a plot by bunch of commies, so they must be destroyed, and the president is rushed into the dream institute to have him studied to end this horrible threat. The military dream program is headed up by Bob Blair. One of the most politically evil character’s ever to wear a polyester suit and yet they named him Bob. “Oh no!…tremble before the fear of…. Bob!” But Christopher Plummer can just ooze evil out of any character even if you stuck him in a Barney suit he’d still make children cry. Bob also has a hit squad in rented suits ready to run over phone booths on a moments notice, and his own pet psycho psychic, Tommy played perfectly by David Pat Kelly. Tommy enjoys stuffing his face with food while harassing Alex about whose the better dream-linker, and when he’s really bored he kills patients “Just for the kicks man.” Bob doesn’t want the military machine to stop churning out nukes, so he hires Tommy to try to dream assassinate the president at nap time.

dreamscapeAlex discovers the assassination plot thanks to the cunning investigative reporting by Norm from Cheers but then gets rick rolled out of a moving car before he can get the news back to Dr. Novotny whose already been killed by Bob’s goon squad. There’s a motorcycle road race and Alex gets chased down by Lincoln Continentals at the race tracks narrowly escaping into the back of a horse trailer. That’s a lot of horses a** for one trailer. Alex works his way back to the institute just in time to remote link up with the president who is dreaming he’s on a Amtrak in Hell, next stop downtown Armagedonville. They fight subway zombies, ninjas, and radioactive wolf-beasts while being pursued by Tommy who just impaled the train conductor with freddy fingers and turned into a giant Snakeman. I had that exact same dream once but I was in high school and I was in my underwear. Oh wait… maybe that wasn’t a dream.

Dreamscape’s a pretty fun little 80’s flick with big nods to influencing Wes Craven’s Nightmare on Elm St., complete with a bad guy sporting Freddyish finger blades, and a giant nightmarish snake creature. I saw this movie when I was 10 years old and back then the Snakeman scared the heck out of me, but this time around I found it rather goofy. Dennis Quaid without a shirt was the most horrifying thing about it. Retroman Steve says check it and be sure to not eat Chinese food before bedtime.


– 1 motorcycle chase with crash and bale
– 2 nuclear explosions
– 2 Snakemen
– Multiple radioactive mutants
– Norm from Cheers cameo
– Steel beam circus acts
– Train shaggin’
– Emergency heart removal
– Lee press on Freddy nails
– Numchuck chucking
– Mutant dogs

7.1 out of 10

“it’s Dennis Quaid-tastic”

Check out the trailer for Dreamscape

Jan

Comments Off on Horror Hotel (Bloody New Year)

Bloody New Year

I gotta admit I prefer budget lodging in this Michigan economy. Just give me a room with a bed and a TV and I’m living the life of a king. It probably comes from my dad whose idea of a family vacation was going up north with us in the back of the pickup so we’d just slide around like loose change. Apparently he thought we could just go limp if we were in an accident. Luckily we’d only stop for some deer venison jerky or to close up that loose tailgate. Once at our destination he could always find the cheapest hotel in the area. I kept holding out for the possibility of a pool but my dad would just say “They charge you extra for that…I can just spray you down with the hose out back.”

Bloody New Year

The motel would have signs advertising amenities like “AIR” or “COLOR TV” usually placed over a flickering neon sign with a letter or two burned out. Yes enjoy your stay at the “HO EL” where you too can fall asleep to the gentle sounds of a bug zapper killing it’s prey or play that always popular game of “name that stain.”

The room would usually smell of dank mothballs and your feet would sink immediately into an inch deep matting of wall to wall shag carpet. All this fenced in by your standard issued 60’s wood paneling. I can still feel those walls closing in on me like I was Han Solo in that Death Star garbage room scene. “Wait, there’s something moving in the carpet!” If you were lucky you’d get a bed with those vibrating magic fingers and for a mere quarter you could get your inner organs reorganized or your spine realigned without those hefty chiropractor bills. Now that I have my own kids I too find myself drawn to those roadside budget lodgings but I know to always keep a can of bug spray handy and look for one with a heated pool. So if you’re ever on Lost Highway I suggest Big Marge’s Sunset Motel. The Sunset has clean rooms, great rates, and the morning coffee will put hair on your chest. Marge is proof of that.

Bloody New YearSpeaking of hotels you don’t want to stay overnight at. The Grand Island Hotel in “Bloody New Year” redefines the term “tourist trap.” A group of middle aged looking British teens after a long day of harassing carnies crash their sail boat on a remote island. There they find a strange Bavarian looking hotel seemingly abandoned and hastily decorated for a New Years party. Turns out an experimental government plane took a nose dive on the island back in the 50’s creating this sort of time rip in space where the dead are stuck haunting the hotel. Sorta like the line at Secretary of State only for the undead so rightfully the spirits there are a bit cranky. At first things seem pretty normal, maids service is sporadic, beds get turned down mysteriously. There’s also open bars and peeping toms, but nothing you wouldn’t otherwise expect at your Hotel 6. Unfazed the soggy group find some vintage clothes left over from a Happy Days rerun to change into and proceed to investigate the rest of resort. Downstairs there’s a B-movie marathon playing on a makeshift theater showing a much more interesting “Attack of the Brain Stem” film but then they cut over to some lame home movies of the hotel instead. “Bring back the brain stems!”

Things do liven up a bit when an Arabian sheik fresh from the set of Aladdin leaps out of the screen and kills Spud “I’m Alrighta” with a scratch to the face. A good reminder to always wash your hands! This horrifying event doesn’t seem to affect the rest of the group which range from apathy to boredom “Oh bullocks Spud’s dead… maybe we should wrap him in tinfoil and poke holes in him.”

The group wisely decide to split up to make the killing go more quickly  Tom and his girlfriend head off to investigate a nearby beach house and try to get in some nooky time. Once inside they they get attacked by a malevolent fish net and a demonic end table that they impale with a fish hook. If only they had learned early on the true horrors of Red Lobster decor!

horror hotelMeanwhile Rick and his girlfriend head down to the beach front for some afternoon clam digging but are soon drawn to mysterious sounds of laughter in the nearby woods. The sound gets louder as they approach the center of the island and find themselves in an arborist nightmare of giggling trees and laughing shrubs. The chia-pet demons start dive bombing them so they run out of there faster than Mark Wahlberg in a crappy Shyamalan film. They end up at at crash site of vintage WWII action plane where a zombie pilot’s head explodes and ruins Rick’s stylin suit jacket.

But then things get weird…

Like a Scooby Doo episode the carny gang from the mainland appear on the island fresh from their rowboat workout to terrorize those darn meddlin’ kids. People start turning into fondue faced zombies and  carnies get their heads ripped off like twist caps on soda bottles. There’s disappearing maids, dandruff storms, elevators that soak up patrons like big bounty towels and there’s evil furniture banisters with Kung-Fu grip. I think I might have hallucinated that last part but I swear at one point they get attacked by ping pong balls and ride a billiards table like a surf board in a zombie disco. These are just some of the many amenities you too can enjoy at the Grand Hotel island!

The guest list dwindles down as most of them now are Demonites under hotel management. Rick and his girlfriend not wanting a bad case of bed hair or getting disemboweled battle their way back to shore to find the getaway rowboat. Will they discover the secrets of Grand Island? Will they escape the ghosts evil clutches? Was Mr. Bean the only thing funny to ever come out of Britain? All this and more can be answered in “Bloody New Year.”

I was half expecting Bloody New Year  to just be another run of the mill holiday themed slasher but it turned out to be a fun little creepfest with some obvious nods to The Shining..well except without all those pesky things like plot or acting to get in the way. Retroman Says check it out “and be sure to bring a clean pair of Alan Whickers you bloody land lover, or I’ll box yer blimey ears you bugger. Gots No time for Rumpy Pumpy!”


– 1 exploding zombie pilot
– 1 shotgun zombie blast and dismemberment
– 1 neck corkscrew
– 2 banister demon Muppets
– Carnival boat parades
– Peeping tom ghosts
– Multiple arm choppings
– Paranormal furniture movers
– Invisible bed turnover services
– Sheik scratch fever
– End tables demon possessions
– Laughing bushes
– Death by boat propeller
– Attacking fish nets
– Gut punching
– Killer ping pong balls

8.2 out of 10

“ohhh Bullocks.”

Check out the trailer for Horror Hotel (bloody New Year)

Dec

Comments Off on Phantasm II

Phantasm II

It’s not too early to sharpen up your pinball skills. In April Pinball at the Zoo’ returns with all the flashing lights and dinging sounds your senses can handle. Now I wouldn’t really consider myself a pinball wizard. I’m neither deaf, dumb, nor blind… well…. o.k 2 out 3 ain’t too bad, but I do play a pretty mean pinball. I rate my pinball playing skill at a “David Blane” level. It’s lots of hype with no really big payoff. Mostly it’s just  me jumping around and yelling obscenities at the ball. But I can’t help it, I’m addicted to the game. The combination of precise skill shots and random chaos, the lights, the cheesy digital music, the way the arcade owner gives me an evil glare when I tilt the machine on it’s side. It all makes my fingers twitchy just thinking about it.

This year the Zoo’ will have the usual assortment of vendors to buy some cool pinball swag but the big draw has got to be that tournament trophy and 1st place pinball machine. Oh that would look great in my living room right next to that leg lamp Santa brought me. There’ll also be an arcade auction where you too can take home a piece of your childhood memories minus the pubescent humiliations and locker stuffings. Hundreds of arcade and pinball machines going cheaper than what you’d pay for a Playstation, and just like a cheap hooker if you overlook some cigarette stains you can get yourself a good deal. So come all ye pinheads and basement Game Room dwellers. Pilgrimage forth squinting in the sunlight to play with ye balls and flippers. You might just go home with a trophy to impress the ladies or at least a used game. Good luck fitting it in the back of that 83 Pinto.

Phantasm IISpeaking of evil silver balls hurdling at your face, Phantasm II continues the fine tradition of flying death spheres ready to impale and dismember. The Tall Man, Angus Scrimm, is back to work digging up corpses and shrinking them down to evil dwarf monks for his army of the dead. Mike (James LeGros) has recently been let out of the insane asylum and is heading back home with his old pal Reggie from Phantasm I. Reg is a balding unemployed ice cream truck driver and ever since the ice cream market tanked he’s been living at home with his family. He refuses to acknowledge the events of the first film ever happened until The Tall Man kills his whole family in a spectacular gas explosion that would make Michael Bay weepy. All those gallons of ice cream lost forever… oh the humanity!! Hungry for revenge and Rocky Road they take a road trip in their Hemi Barricuda searching abandoned towns and dug up graveyards for the evil mortician.

The two take a pit stop in a creepy abandoned town where Mike communicates telepathically with his out of state girlfriend Liz when he sleeps. She’s a squeaky voiced bimbo whose in love with Mike even though they’ve never actually met. It’s sorta like Internet dating only with ESP. Liz’s grandfather just kicked the bucket recently so she’s been hanging out in mausoleum filing her nails, and getting tossed around by the tall man like drinking night at Ike Turner’s house. Soon her recently buried and now zombified grandpa tries out his new door to door sales job on the local town’s priest knocking at his door and giving him a good scare then crawls into bed afterwards with grandma. Dang! Grandpa didn’t get this much action when he was alive.

Liz heads to the mausoleum where grandma’s already been Shrinky Dinked down into a Star Wars Jawa and proceeds to viciously attack Liz’s knee caps. She easily put her down with a china vase to the noggin’. This sort of begs the question, why would the tall man raise an evil army of weak midget monks with thin skulls? Doesn’t seem like the best way to take over the world. Maybe he could have stretched them out instead of leaving them in the oven so long.

Phantasm II

Meanwhile the priest catches a bad case of van Gogh-itis losing an ear and gets his head drilled in by a flying Cuisinart. This barely gives Liz enough time to escape into the nearby cemetery tripping over Mike and Reg already hiding out in an open grave. They all run like little girls and barricade themselves in a nearby abandoned house where they make S’mores, sing Kumbaya, and rig up grenades with Budweiser cans. Reggie then puts his moves on the nymphomaniac hitchhiker they picked up earlier whose got a thing for balding hippies who play guitar. Wow what are the odds? While those two are doing the naked lambada upstairs, Liz is left alone so she can be more easily kidnapped through the a convenient plate glass window. At this point she’s probably feeling like she should’ve just stayed in bed.

So it’s back to the mausoleum again where Reg and Mike battle evil henchmen in gas masks with giant chainsaws and shoot up dwarfs for target practice. They also get attacked by more flying drill spheres with upgraded seek and destroy lasers and then wrestle with some pasty white guys in rented tuxes.  Seriously guys some blondes just aren’t worth all this. But they do eventually free Liz from a pre death embalming and get sucked into a cross dimensional gateway…all because Mike had to be all “wonder what this button does?” Turns out the “other side” looks a lot like an abandoned beach in Jersey complete with red skies and mutant dwarfs in toxic waste barrels. One of the baby dwarfs nearly eats Reggie’s face when it’s turkey pop up timer goes off. This all leads up to a big showdown back in the real world with the tall man, a embalming needle, and some sulfuric acid and that’s when you know you got a party.

In typical Phantasm fashion the ending doesn’t make a lick of sense but who really cares. It’s such a fun ride just getting there. Any movie that has four-barreled shot guns, 5 foot long chainsaws, and homicidal dwarfs gets extra bonus points in my book. The director Don Coscarelli really out did himself on this one with some obvious nods to “Evil Dead”, and  “The Beyond” and it also gave us more of The Tall Man and his evil scowl of creepiness. Phantasm II is one of those rare films where the sequel really out performs the original. Retroman Steve says check it out…. but only during visitation hours. Also be sure to keep your coffins stored in a cool dry place for freshness.


– Exploding house
– Exploding rats
– Ear choppin’
– Embalming-fu
– Chainsaw to the groin
– Corpse stabbing
– Forehead drilling
– Exploding Cudas
– Hand choppin’
– Flame-throwers
– Sawed off double barrel shotguns
– Dwarf tossin’
– Head drillin’
– Embalming acid
– Barrel-o-dwarfs

9.5 out of 10

“it’s Phantastic!”

Check out the trailer for Phantasm II

About the Highway

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