Starring: Dee Wallace Stone, M Emmet Walsh, Billy Green Bush, Scott Grimes, Billy Zane
CRITTER 1 – “They have weapons.” CRITTER 2 – “So what?” <Critter 2 is blown up> CRITTER 2 – “Fuck!”
As I’ve explored in numerous reviews in the past, such as Bride Of Chucky and Puppet Master III, there comes a point in some horror films where it becomes clear that the killer isn’t very intimidating.
There are ways to deal with this. The Puppet Master solution was to turn its killers – the titular puppets – into the heroes and make the audience root for them.
The Bride Of Chucky solution, meanwhile, was to acknowledge that the concept of a killer doll was a daft one and therefore the best thing to do was not only make Chucky the hero but also play the film entirely for laughs.
Starring: Charlie Sheen, Tom Berenger, Corbin Bernsen, Wesley Snipes, Rene Russo, Dennis Haysbert, James Gammon
CERRANO – “Bats, they are sick. I cannot hit curveball. Straight ball, I hit it very much. Curveball, bats are afraid. I ask Jobu to come, take fear from bats. I offer him cigar, rum. He will come.”
HARRIS – “You know, you might wanna think about taking Jesus Christ as your saviour instead of fooling around with all this stuff.”
CERRANO – “Ah, Jesus. I like him very much. But he no help with curveball.”
HARRIS – “Are you trying to say Jesus Christ can’t hit a curveball?”
Let me cut to the chase: if you’re from the UK, chances are you don’t care about baseball and haven’t heard of Major League. And yet – spoilers – I’ve given it five stars. Lol wut etc.
The truth is, I’m slightly biased here. I have family who lived in Cleveland, Ohio and as a result I grew up following the Cleveland-based sports teams, most notably the Cleveland Browns of the NFL and the Cleveland Indians of the MLB.
Major League, a comedy movie about the Indians, has therefore featured in my life for more than two decades. Over the years I’ve watched my worn-out VHS copy, DVD copy and Blu-ray copy so many times I could probably act the whole thing out from start to finish. Continue reading “Major League (1989) review”→
Starring: Malcolm Stoddard, Cyd Hayman, Angela Pleasence, Wilhelmina Green
“Do you know what a cuckoo does? It lays its egg in another bird’s nest. And do you know what the fledgling does? It pushes the others out, one after the other, until it has the complete attention of the parents. That’s Bonnie. Bonnie must go.” (Alan, The Godsend)
You can tell a film is iconic when it spawns its own brood of knock-offs. Take Night Of The Living Dead and the way every zombie film that followed had shambling, moaning monsters just like Romero’s, for example.
The Godsend is one of these offshoots, going so far as to go right down the ‘British couple inherits child that isn’t theirs’ route. And you know, it isn’t absolutely terrible, even though it’s about as original as a Harlem Shake video. Continue reading “The Godsend (1980) review”→
Starring: Noah Hathaway, Michael Moriarty, Jenny Beck, June Lockhart, Phil Fondacaro, Julia Louis-Dreyfus
“Harry, your sister isn’t an alien. She’s something much worse.” (Eunice, Troll)
You may already be aware of Troll 2, the movie some claim is the worst film ever made. I’ve already reviewed it, because that’s how cutting edge and cool and shit I am.
But what about the first Troll? What was so interesting about that film that someone decided it needed a sequel? Is it just as bad as its successor? How do they link up?
Actually, Troll has nothing to do with Troll 2. The latter was originally named Goblin until it was decided that changing the name to pretend it was a sequel to Troll would gain it extra credibility. No punchline necessary. Continue reading “Troll (1986) review”→
Starring: Kane Hodder, Jensen Daggett, Todd Caldecott, Tiffany Paulsen
“I think the time has come for your first swimming lesson. You don’t wanna end up drowning like that Voorhees boy, do you? He never learned how to swim, either. And he’s still at the bottom of this lake.” (Charles, Friday The 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan)
By the time the Friday The 13th series had reached its eighth incarnation it was clear ideas were running a bit thin on the ground.
After all, there’s only so many times you can recycle the whole ‘masked killer stalks horny teens through the woods’ routine without eventually jumping the shark.
Starring: Paul Kelman, Lori Hallier, Neil Affleck, Keith Knight, Cynthia Dale, Helene Udy, Alf Humphreys
“Roses are red, violets are blue, one is dead… and so are you.” (killer’s note, My Bloody Valentine)
Valentine’s Day can be a pain in the arse at the best of times.
If you’re single it can be a thoroughly depressing affair as you hear countless tales of lovebirds wooing each other with gifts and other tokens of their adoration.
Meanwhile, being one of said lovebirds is no picnic either, what with the stress of having to buy your partner a present and hoping it’s the right size, or the right colour, or the specific type they asked for.
Starring: Paul Le Mat, William Hickey, Irene Miracle, Jimmie F Skaggs, Robin Frates, Matt Roe
“Metaphysically speaking, I killed myself.” (Neil, Puppet Master)
Over the past few months many of my reviews have been dedicated to films by Full Moon, one of my favourite B-movie studios.
Full Moon were responsible for a raft of low-budget 80s and 90s horror films and while the majority were as atrocious as you’d expect (hence exhibits A, B, C, D and E here), every so often they’d come up trumps with a gem.
Starring: Carrie Lorraine, Ian Patrick Williams, Carolyn Purdy-Gordon, Guy Rolfe, Hilary Mason, Stephen Lee, Bunty Bailey, Cassie Stewart
RALPH – “You know, I can remember every toy I had as a kid.”
GABRIEL – “And they remember you, Ralph. Toys are very loyal, and that is a fact.”
This may appear to be your fairly bog-standard review of a cheesy ’80s horror film, but for me this review is a confrontation of my childhood fears and a firm “up yours” to many a sleepless night.
You see, when I was a young sprog of around five or six, I used to go with my dad to the local library to rent videos. Usually I’d end up with something suitably child-friendly but for at least a year there was a cardboard standee in the corner that used to scare the living piss out of me.
The offending display simply showed the poster image you see to the side of this text. The word ‘Dolls‘, along with an image of a doll holding its eyeballs in the air. It was also accompanied by the UK VHS tagline: “They want to play with you”.
Starring: Peter Weller, Nancy Allen, Kurtwood Smith, Miguel Ferrer, Dan O’Herlihy, Ronny Cox
REPORTER – “Robo! Excuse me Robo, any special message for all the kids watching at home?”
ROBOCOP – “Stay out of trouble.”
What can be said about Robocop that hasn’t already been said? Probably that it’s a satirical medieval-themed romp about an enchanted candlestick. And that’s probably because it isn’t entirely accurate.
Still, I might as well throw my opinion into the endless ocean of praise it’s received since its released back in 1987, just in case you’ve already heard 17,000 people say it’s great and you’re the sort of person who isn’t convinced unless you’ve heard 17,001. Continue reading “Robocop (1987) review”→
Starring: Brian Matthews, Leah Ayres, Brian Backer, Jason Alexander
“They never found his body, but he survived. He lives on whatever he can catch. Eats them raw, alive. No longer human. Right now, he’s out there. Watching, waiting. Don’t look: he’ll see you. Don’t move: he’ll hear you. Don’t breathe: you’re dead!” (Todd, The Burning)
Although there were a number of slasher films before Friday The 13th (most notably Halloween and Black Christmas), it was that film’s success which led to the birth of a sub-genre that was by far the most oft-imitated during the ’80s: the camp slasher.
(Obviously, by that I mean slasher films set in a summer camp, as opposed to films where a killer prances around going “oo-er missus” before stabbing someone.)