Archive for the 'Review by Doktor' Category

Jan

posted by Doktor | January 21, 2013 | 80's b-movies, B-movie Reviews, Cult Film, Review by Doktor

Comments Off on Miami Connection

Tagline: Survival the ultimate test…

Year: 1987 Runtime: 120 min

Director: Y.K. Kim & Woo-Sang Park

Writer: Y.K. Kim

Starring: Y.K. Kim, Vincent Hirsch and Joseph Diamand

Are old enough to remember the 80’s? If so, welcome to generation existential. Oh, and you can skip the next paragraph unless you just want to walk down memory lane. If not, let me set the scene for you that is the back drop to Miami Connection.

Florida in Movies/TV circa1980s

Playing for the bad guys there’s Cuban refugee Tony Montana running llello (that’s cocaine to you and me) in Scarface. On the good guy side there’s Sunny Crockett, Ricardo Tubbs, Martin Castillo and the rest of the united colors of the Miami Vice taking out the trash. Burger King was still leading the world in Whopper sales. Walt Disney started programming the robot Mickey Mouse death squads on the much less expensive, yet far more user friendly Commodore 64.

As accurate as these depictions of Florida are, they are sadly lacking in the darkest secret of Florida during the 80s. To this day it is still only mentioned in hushed tones, but that whisper is a lion’s roar compared to the previous silence surrounding this plague. The plague of the Ninja.

For a millennia Florida was the mecca for the Ninja. Not just any old run-of-the-mill ninja. These are extraordinary ninjas, specialized like their brethren the Tree Ninja, Cave Ninja, Beach Ninja, Teams that form Giant Ninja, Topless Female Ninja, etc. These are the Miami Motorcycle Ninja (MMN) otherwise known as Llello Ninja. They power was so great, their vengeance so swift and frightening, that it took master martial artist Y.K. Kim to bring their evil into the public consciousness.

It took Angelo Janotti, master guitarist, to bring the fight against the Ninja onto the charts and into the hottest discotheques. But don’t take my word for it. Download the tracks, “Against the Ninja” and “Friends,” for free here.

The story follows a band of friends, Mark (Y.K. Kim), John (Vincent Hirsch), Jack (Joseph Diamand), Jim (Maurice Smith), Tom (Angelo Janotti) and Jane (Kathy Collier). By day they’re mild mannered college students, by night synth rock gods, Dragon Force. Both diurnally and nocturnally (as needed) guardians of peace with black belts in Tae Kwon Do. As you can easily guess, Florida (and possibly the world) is not big enough for Dragon Force and Llello Ninja.

Much ass is kicked.

Before you write this off as just another mindless action film, know this: it’s not! A subplot involves Jim, who has been looking for his father. It is more heart wrenching than Oliver Twist, Little Orphan Annie and Quick, Burn Them Alive: The Nelson Brothers Story combined. If you’re not moved by Jim’s story you’re some sort of heartless monster. Or a Llello Ninja.

I can say no more. Words will only fail to capture the majesty of this film and I shan’t be responsible for ruining it for you.

roadside attractions

  • Coca Cola shirts
  • Half shirts & short shorts (on dudes)
  • Mullets
  • Headbands
  • Synth rock band singing about Ninjas
  • Programming in basic
totals

10

blood

BLOOD

One word: Ninjas.

5

blood

BREASTS

Actually, there’s no breasts. But, for some reason, Jim can’t seem to button his pants when he’s at home. So, I’m giving it a five because this movie has a little something for the ladies.

10

beast

BEASTS

Technically, there are no beasts. But there are Llello Ninja, and they are twice as bad as any beast.

8.0 OVERALL
dripper

Check out the trailer for “Dead City” aka “Legion of the Night”

trailers

dripper
Dec

Comments Off on our picks for best post-apocalyptic films

The Mayans may have just punked us for armageddon so we thought it might be best to get our favorite post-apocalyptic films online just in case they forgot daylight savings. Sure the Mayans brought us corn and mayonaise but they could have never predicted these films of the apocalypse. So without further ado, here’s our mutant editor’s picks.


Di-Anne Takillya’s Pick: “Escape from New York”

Escape From New York: My favorite above all other post-apocalyptic movies; The president’s plane has crash-landed in the New York penal colony, and they’ve gotta get him out! But how? Send in the ultimate in bad-assery, Snake Plissken! The eyepatch wearin’, scruffy-cheeked, leather-clad assassin is basically shanghaied by the government to go get the President back. He’s given a glider, a tracker, and a gun, then dropped over the fence. He meets up with a cabbie who runs the streets like the Devil hisseself is at his heels, and joins forces with The Brain and Adrienne Barbeau to pry the president from the clutches of The Duke. (Who, incidentally, is A-Number 1, and don’t you forget it!) Chock full of fights, sneaking around, and horrible (early) computer graphics, you get your top-secret cassette tape’sworth out of this flick. I watch this movie almost religiously; which is getting rough on my liver, because if you watch the movie like I do, you take a drink every time someone says, “Snake,” “Plissken,” “Duke,” or “President.”

I can’t go this whole time without mentioning that Donald Plesance plays the president, and you can tell that Dr. Loomis has done very well for himself, except for now The Duke is holding him for ransom, and The Duke is one bad mother- Shut your mouth! Hey, I’m just talking about The Duke! He’s debasing and humiliating the president, and that just won’t be tolerated! The Snake… Plisskin busts him loose, and the chase is on! Blam, boom, POW! The president is safe, long live democracy! A happy, or at least as happy an ending as John Carpenter will allow, which I think is good when the apocalypse is going down. At least there aren’t any aliens or the anti-Christ!

Tiger Sixon’s Pick: “The Road Warrior”

Resource scarcity is a scary thing, be it water, Twinkies, or as Road Warrior (aka Mad Max 2) warns us, clothing. Wait, I mean gasoline. There seems to be a shortage of pants as well for some reason, as leather underwear is pretty much the standard workplace attire. As a post-apocalyptic fable, Road Warrior nails it: civilization has gone to hell (at least in Australia. Things might be slightly better in Milwaukee), gasoline is worth more than gold, and it is survival of the fittest.

And like any great b-movie, Road Warrior has a villain wearing a goalie mask: The Humungus. He speaks a bit more than Jason too, or heck even Max himself. That’s right, Mel Gibson, back before he went off the deep end, only has about four lines. Maybe five an’ half. I ain’t counting grunts an’ groans neither. That would probably bump him up to about ten.

Survival is a main theme of Road Warrior, as in bein’ able to survive on what ya can. If that means eatin’ dog food, so be it. If that means picking over corpses for music boxes, OK. And if’n that means having to sew yer own leather jackets or underoos, then go for it. Yes, Road Warrior is pretty much a documentary survival. Except super-violent and full of desolation. But, if you look past all the sand, blood, and leather, Road Warrior teaches ya a few things.

The most important of which might be: “Don’t try to catch a razor sharp boomerang with yer bare hands.”

Tiger Sixon says, Road Warrior is a must watch.

General Relativity’s Pick: “Waterworld.”

I am from the future, so to me what you call a “post-apocalyptic thriller” is what I would call a “documentary.”  Of these, Waterworld most accurately portrays the poisoned ecological hellscape you people have inflicted upon my present.  Sure, they laughed at Kevin Costner back in 1995, but now that your cities are flooding, and the fish and polar bears are dying, and the rains have stopped, I don’t see anyone giggling.  Just wait until the fish-people start showing up.


Also, “Waterworld” is hilarious.  I mean, the dude drinks his pee.  And there is our dearly departed Dennis Hopper in a performance second only to his turn in “Super Mario Brothers.”  And Jane Tripplehorn was at her hottest in 1995.  And how did those horses survive on Everest?  Wouldn’t the Yetis rule the Earth?  These questions aside, I recommend you start saving up your dirt to use as money, because you want to be in the 1% when the ice caps flood and the evil jet ski pirates show up for your trimaran.  Dry land is not a myth!


The Doktor’s Pick: “Hell Comes to Frogtown”

Michael Stipe said it best when he said, “Everybody cries and everybody hurts sometimes.” Personally that song gives me the diarrhea (cha, cha, cha), but that’s neither here nor there.

Speaking of painful colonic discharge, how’s about that Mayan end o’ the world stuff? If this is the end of the world, I feel fine. Mostly because the end is like every other day. Mostly.

What would be awesome is if the end of the world was exactly like Hell Comes to Frogtown. The frog mutant creatures would be a bummer, but getting chauffeured in a 50’s panel van with a M60 machine gun, piloted by Sandahl “Valeria” Bergman and Cec Verrell would more than make up for it.

Here’s the gist: Nuclear war mutates frogs into mutant frog men creatures, sterilizes most of humanity and kills off most of the men. Into this arena comes a man, Sam Hell (Roddy “Hot Rod” Piper). Naturally, it’s his duty to get up in that boo— I, erhm, mean, he is sought after for his milk of mannesia, as it were, by the provisional government to help bolster the human population. The only problem is, the fertile virgins he has to impregnate are in the clutches of Commander Toty, the evil leader of the greenies, a derogatory term for the frog people. So Sam, Spangle and Centinella have to make a trip to Frogtown to get ‘em back. Can he do it? Hell yeah! It’s Roddy “Nada” Piper. Duh!

Giallo Goon’s Pick: “Future Force”

In the distant future 1991, so the distant future about twenty years ago, crime was at an all time high. The cops are no longer in control, so they were sold to a corporation (no, not OCP) who then rounded up the rootinest, tootenest rowdy bounty hunters there ever were. They were judge, jury and executioners. They were known as Judges… oh, sorry. I was thinking of a better movie. These dupes are known as COPS. I know what you’re thinking: “Wait, so they fired the cops and formed COPS?” Yup. Civilian Operated Police… Something. I can’t really remember what the ‘S’ stood for. So why wouldn’t they just give the police more power or declare martial law? Look, it’s all very complicated, but in a few words, you wouldn’t have David Carradine drunkenly beat people up. Carradine plays the lone wolf on a justice mission, John Tucker. He has the quickest draw and the meanest attitude. Cleary a healthy candidate to be dishing out lethal justice.

So in a huge shocking twist, turns out the CEO of this corporation (we are going to call them Evil Co), is *choke* *gasp* a bad guy! A TV reporter who will later become the pale, pasty love interest to Tucker, catches wind of all his wrong doings. A bounty is put on her head and Tucker intercepts her, only to learn the truth. Together, they fight through waves of mulleted thugs and misinformed mulleted COPS and finally take on the villain himself in the ultimate battle of good and evil. Tucker does this with the most advanced form of weaponry: A remote controlled, groin socking, laser shooting power glove! This advanced piece of death technology is at Tucker’s disposable whenever he needs, which is like twice. He could seriously use it all the time and it would save him so much trouble, but he only uses it at the beginning to show off his cool toys and then at the end to remind you so you go, ‘Oh yeah, I thought he had that thing.’ Nothing can stop him. Not the hundreds of thousands of bullets shot by machine guns, snipers, grenades, thugs with knives, people punching him in his doughy mid section or literally the dozens of jack booted thugs in leather vests that pile drive him. Nothing will stop Tucker from getting to the ultimate truth: That he was once in Kung Fu.

So if you like seeing ripped denim and eye patched thugs with the coolest hair styles in a post apocalyptic 90’s (sorry, Full House has been canceled… perminately!) or watching a drunken David Carradine phone in a performance and stumble around and slur cheesy one liners all to hair feathering 90’s rock, then Future Force is for you!

Oh and the best part… there is a sequel, Future Zone!

Barry Goodall’s Pick: “Zardoz”

Some movies make perfect sense. Movies like “the Godfather” , “Star Wars” or “Breaking 2: Electric Boogalloo”  But others take you to a whole new level of weird and incomprehensible. A place where reality and time don’t matter. A dimension where you’ll find the movies like “Zardoz” waiting for you.

But what exactly is a Zardoz? Well, it’s not a new cholesterol drug but it could have some of the same long lasting side effects.. dizziness, upset stomach, a lost of free will. It could have been a 80’s hairband since it contains many of the same outfits. Zardoz is actually a giant floating head that upchucks guns and ammo to aborigines like an NRA bulimic. Sean Connery is our post apocalyptic hero in a leather man-kini who hides inside the giant noggin’ and shoots the pilot right above his drawn on mustache. Why? because he’s James Bond wearing hooker boots that’s why!

The head flies him to the Vortex, a land of cellophaned house plants and lazy immortals needing Viagara. That’s where he’s kept as a pet forced to watch 70’s porn and have tests performed on him, usually involving sharp things poked at his crotch. He escapes to a retirement home where a bunch of old people can’t die but are forced to listen to ragtime  music and wear their prom outfits for eternity. Feeling sorry for all the old folk, He invites his aboriginal friends into the vortex to put them out of their misery. Oh, and there’s boobies…lots of boobies. So much nudity I felt overdressed watching it. At some point in the film Sean Connery wears a full on wedding gown… I passed out from shock & horror, “Double oh please make this stop!”  Yes, this movie was bad but it was based on the Wizard of Oz book which makes perfect sense if you’re taking experimental drugs living in a 70’s commune. Barry Goodall says check it out and If you feel the same  way then congratulations, you’ve been Zardozed. Now go get a job you dirty hippy.

Sep

Comments Off on Hausu

Year: 1977 Runtime: 88 min

Director: Nobuhiko Ôbayashi

Writer: Chiho Katsura (screenplay), Chigumi Ôbayashi (original story)

Starring: Kimiko Ikegami, Miki Jinbo and Kumiko Ohba

After the massive success of Jaws, the suits at Toho contacted Nobuhiko Ôbayashi to develop a similar script. What they got was a ketamine fueled wet fart or, in common parlance, a screenplay both twisted and swarming with juvenile poo-poo humor. I cannot imagine the demented fever which destroyed the writer’s fragile grip on reality as he wrote this. Sweet Sweating Christ outside Mary Magdalene’s door! What ungodly torture to endure, even for a moment.

See. The mere mention of it brought me to a frenzy. I have to relax, there is more to tell.

The final product can only be considered a film only in the strictest meaning of the word. That is, it’s a collection of pictures, one after the other, playing at 24 frames per second for 88 minutes. Truth is, Hausu is something you experience, like love or LSD or a colostomy. Each has their allure, but rarely do they make sense. Even in retrospect.

Hausu is the story of a young girl, Gorgeous (Kimiko Ikegami), and her six friends who visit Gorgeous’ aunt over summer break. Gorgeous and her friends are named for their asset: Gorgeous is beautiful and fashion conscious; Prof is the smart one with glasses and her face in a book; Melody can play any musical instrument; Kung Fu is a master of martial arts; Mac is the fat, hongry one; Sweet is sweet; and finally, Fantasy is the overly imaginative one.

Aunt, who is never named, broods in her mansion on the hill, the titular house. For thirty years she has haunted the place, waiting—love never effectuated. She and her fiancé had made a pinky promise to marry once he returned from WWII. Because he never did the years of solitude twisted Aunt into a malevolent demon.

That ends the logical portion of the film. The rest is a hellish string of things-that-happen in Hunter S. Thompson proportions, if he were a Japanese school girl in a Jaws reinterpretation.

The madness experienced first hand by the girls is usually explained away as “an illusion.” I tend to agree with that assessment. How else would you explain disembodied fingers playing a piano, or a grown man transformed into a pile of bananas or skin falling away to reveal a new body of flame, a la Johnny Storm, or equality for all in the eyes of the law?

Never watch this film before going to bed. Strange and terrible things will stalk your slumber. I will speak of it no more because my blood runs cold remembering my dreams. I ask that you trust me on this.

I do not want to spoil the roller coaster ride, so I will just say this and be done with it: Hausu is the epitome of schizophrenic genius. The absolute best anti-drug propaganda I have ever witnessed. And, just for the record, as diametrically opposed to Jaws any film could be.

roadside attractions

  • killer mattresses
  • disembodied head biting her friend
  • painting projectile puking
  • awesome Kung Fu action
  • Monkey’s style musical montage
  • gratuitous
  • cat tossing action (but NOT to scare you)
  • hongry, hongry piano
  • Watermelon Man transformed into a skeleton because Mr. Togo likes bananas
  • house under six feet of cat’s blood
totals

10

blood

BLOOD

Houseful

4

blood

BREASTS

Four. Exactly the right number for two naked women. A bit of sanity in the midst of the bedlam that is this film.

10

beast

BEASTS

Awful and depraved hysteria presented in hyper-unrealistic papier-mâché

8.0 OVERALL
dripper

Check out the trailer for “Hausu”

trailers

dripper
Sep

posted by Doktor | September 2, 2012 | 80's movies, B-movie Reviews, B-movies, Comedy, Review by Doktor

Comments Off on Pick-up Summer

Tagline: We’ll make your engine run hot.

Year: Runtime: 99 min

Director: George Mihalka

Writer: Richard Zelniker

Starring: Michael Zelniker, Carl Marotte and Karen Stephen

The year was 1980. The 70s were officially gone, but not far enough to persuade caucasian men into thinking white fro’s were NOT cool. Arcades were stocked solely with pinball machines. And most importantly, women wore their short shorts up past their navels, making a paradise of moose knuckles and buttock cheeks.

Into this nirvana came the movie Pick-up Summer, a teen-age sex comedy that breaks from most expected plot points and tropes in the genre. Originally it was titled Pinball Summer, but changed because there is far more pick-up, and I mean this quite literally (more later), than pinball. There is a bit of pick-up, read: hooking up, but the act of physically sweeping one off their feet way out numbers any getting together.

One of the most disheartening omissions is the lack of sweater meat. Sure, there is titillation in the form of nipples visible through flimsy t-shirts, but only three scenes of full on bazooms. What’s worse, two of the three scenes are quick flashes.

Sex comedy sans boobs?

The biggest departure from the genre is the lack of the outsider/loner/geek who has to challenge the dashing stud at the fad competition highlighted, in this movie’s case pinball. There’s no initial challenge where our hero fails. There’s no training montage to build up the hero back up. And though there is a final showdown, it’s hard to make a game of pinball exciting. It’s like an ugly contest. You can’t get excited about the competition. You feel sorry for the winner. And, at some point, you realize that you simply don’t care.

Instead, what this movie does offer is an hour and twenty minutes of rivalry building, in the form of two sets of idiots stealing a trophy from one another. The trophy they are taking from one another is half of the prize for winning the pinball tournament. The other half being a date with the Pinball Queen, the dream of all young girls. I understand that this is a small town, and a comedy not to be taken seriously, but really, fighting over a trophy? And Pete, the owner of the arcade, is really worried about it being stolen? What, he can’t afford to replace this piece of crap trophy?

Oh, and just to make sure the audience hates everyone in the film, there’s a liberal amount of unwarranted pranking. You would be hard pressed to find a film with kids more deserving of getting viciously murdered than these jerks. Where was Mike Myers, Jason Voorhees or Freddy Krueger?

Everyone in this movie—the teens, the adults, the cops—are all best described as a “shower of bastards.”

Then there’s the new fangled pinball machine, Arthur: The Talking Pinball Machine. This is the creepiest piece of technology since Hal from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Nothing says fun like, “Hey! Don’t tickle me there!” coming from a pinball machine painted to look like Ronald McDonald’s lecherous uncle.

Why would you want to watch such an cinematic abortion? There’s a few reasons. First, there’s a smashing drinking game you can play. (I’m quite fond of the maxim, “The more you drink, the better the film gets.”) Every time someone gets picked up, drink. You can use either definition, getting with someone or sweeping off their feet. The latter will get you good and drunk. Just don’t play this game if you’re going to be driving. I don’t want to be responsible for any DUI’s.

Second, although this movie is a far cry from from what you would expect from a film of this genre made in the 80s, the fact that it does stray so far off corse makes it fun to watch. Fun in a Mystery Science Theatre 3000 kind of way. You can’t help but sling snarky comments at the screen as you watch this film. Go on, try it.

Third, there are quite a few scenes with extras, some of which where obviously there as extras, some just happened to be in the area, or “production value”. It’s fun to watch what these people are doing, partially because of what the camera is focused on is so retarded, but also because there’s some very funny stuff happening, most unintentional. There’s a few scenes where the fourth wall is broken. There’s people who don’t know what the hell they’re supposed to be doing. Better still, in the dancing scenes, the people who are dancing (and I use that term lightly) are only barely doing so. Tonic-clonic seizure comes to mind.

The best background hijinks is during the gym scene. I don’t want to spoil it for you, but I will say this, it is intentional. Despite the filmmaker’s best effort to make a bad comedy, this is pretty funny.

Finally, there’s some unintentional bromance. Greg and Steve spend a little too much time together, during which they get too close for way too long. And then there’s the biker dry humping his fellow— enough of that. You get the idea. With all the touchy-feely tom foolery this film should have been called Grab-ass Summer.

This film isn’t bad enough to be remembered among the greats (Plan 9 from Outer Space, Manos Hands of Fate, KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park) but it is entertaining enough to watch, especially if you’re in a nitpicking mood. It seems counter intuitive to say, but it’s the fact that it strays from the genre that makes it worth your while.

roadside attractions

  • Pressed ham to impress the ladies
  • Futurific talking pinball machine
  • Pinball championship
  • Funny pervert flasher
  • Teen-age boy turning down sex
totals

4

blood

BLOOD

None. But there is a lot of ketchup, which in b-movies is the same thing.

7

blood

BREASTS

Not nearly enough for the genre, but Joy Boushel makes up in quality where this film lacks quantity

9

beast BEASTS

Everyone in this movie is a monster.

7.0 OVERALL
dripper

Check out the trailer for “Pick-up Summer”

trailers

dripper
Aug

posted by Doktor | August 15, 2012 | 90's movies, Comedy, Cult Film, Rest stop, Review by Doktor

Comments Off on There’s Nothing Out There: Rest Stop Review Edition

Tagline: A horror film of comic proportions.

Year: 1992 Runtime: 91 min

Director: Rolfe Kanefsky

Writer: Rolfe Kanefsky

Starring: Craig Peck, Wendy Bednarz and Mark Collver

Damn you and your clever ways, Rolfe Kanefsky! How in the hell am I supposed to make snarky comments about the cliched tropes your film is doing the very same thing? I have been racking my brains trying to get something started that doesn’t create a recursive loop. Every time I think I find a chink, the center caves in and I end up staring at the blinking cursor on the otherwise blank white page.

Interestingly, this intellectual black hole is exactly what happened when Mike, Crow and Tom Servo attempted an episode where they broke the fourth wall, becoming self aware. The universe narrowly escaped existential destruction. Can you imagine? A dimension where Jean Paul Sartre was right. How horrible!

Here’s the thing, if you didn’t know any of the history of There’s Nothing Out There, you might think this was a Screamsploitation film. It’s not. Actually, this movie preceded Scream by 4 years. (Quick note: I’m not going to go into any conspiracy theories about stolen ideas, but I bring it up because there is a possibility of some cross-pollination.) When you know that, things get interesting. There’s Nothing Out There is the product of a 20 year old, first time director, which is damned impressive.

There’s Noting Out There is a great film. It is the transplantation of the audience’s knowledge into the film. When the dumb couple go out for a “stroll” through the dark woods, there’s Mike, the omniscient, with the warning, “You’re actually going? You’re actually going outside. We’ve had warnings, murder attempts and you’re going out for a walk in the woods?” which is exactly the same thing the audience is thinking. This is the ultimate of existential horrors, the Angst and the Nausea. It was misery to be a teenager, but imagine being a teen-ager stuck in a horror movie and you KNOW you’re in a horror movie. At every turn your friends are disappearing and dying and there’s nothing you can do about it, despite the fact you are warning them every step of the way. This is brilliant, and to be written by a 20 year old, it borderlines sublime. If you have no interest in all this film theory deconstruction there is something very practical you can get from this film. B-MOVIE SURVIVAL TIP: Make sure you have well stocked reserves of saving cream. “Nobody likes a mouthful of shaving cream.”

Roadside Attractions:

  • Proper use of “boom in the shot”
  • Gratuitous breasts 80s style
  • Boglin on steroids
  • Decapitation, face melting and green slime gore

For more on Rolfe Kanefsky, check out our interview with him.



Check out the trailer for “There’s Nothing Out Therre”

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 >>