Ahh late night Cinemax. Where would I be without you? For that matter, where would Fred Olen Ray be without you? Nowhere that's where. Yeah, using double negatives and hustling suckers for quarters in the circus sideshow that is his life. Thank the Gods there are so many women out there who want to bless us with their surgically enhanced bodies performing a little late night lesbian kissing and tribbing. No pegging though. That's too hardcore for Ray and his softcore romps.
"Baby Dolls Behind Bars" is another in a long line of borderline worthless softcore flicks from Ray and his buxom partners in crime. This time the story revolves a blonde who breaks into prison to stop a jewel thief. Or maybe she gets herself caught. Actually she could have been going undercover. Ahh who cares why she's there? Anyway she runs into a corrupt warden, (the lovely Christine Nguyen), who wears a dog collar and likes having lesbian sex. Then some other stuff happens and some more sex and then I went to bed.
This is a weaker entry in the Ray oevure. What makes one softcore movie better than another you ask? Why the sex scenes of course. This one has the same cast dry humping the same people in the same positions. More of the same, etc, etc. zzzz... The only thing that saves this movie from complete oblivion is Christine Nguyen. My God she's lovely. She always give me the impression that she enjoys having these softcore adventures and she's a pleasure to watch. Her sex scene in the cabin with the jewel thief was magical.
So if you're up late and "Baby Dolls Behind Bars" is on, let a good half hour go by and hold on for the Nguyen scene. It's the only scene worth watching. Christine and her dog collar choker bring some sleazy joy to this barren B-prison experience.
The piranhas are back and they’re silly. A waterpark is being constructed for the sole purpose of letting killer fish swim down the water slide. The usual group of B-movie characters fumble around waiting for their chance to die. The fish do their best to eat as much human flesh before people figure out whether they should throw chlorine in the pool. But it’s near impossible to stop a prehistoric fish when he’s hungry. It’s almost as hard as stopping a B-movie producer when he sees a chance to make a quick buck off of suckers who like Piranha movies.
“Piranha 3-DD” filled me with hope when I saw the movie poster. I believed this was going to be a worthy sequel. The first piranha movie truly earned the horror movie praise, “Orgy of gore”. It was a fun movie filled with porn stars, blood and an Oscar worthy performance from Jerry O’Connell. Unfortunately, “Piranha 3-DD” did not apply any of the lessons learned from the first movie. Instead we are treated to a cut-rate piranha movie that should have gone straight to video. I didn’t think a piranha movie could sink any lower. I was wrong.
The filmmakers should be ashamed and embarrassed that they can’t even make a reasonable sequel to a piranha flick. Fish, boobs, blood. What is so hard to understand about this? Well, let me help you understand what went wrong. You see, in any monster movie that involves aquatic creatures, you have to find a reason to get the victims in the water. In the first movie, we have porn stars swimming naked in a lake full of killer fish. Brilliant. In this movie, we have dopes going down the water slide that get rubber fish thrown at them. Not as brilliant. Actually boneheaded. A waterpark? Seriously? Cheap, lazy and stupid. That pretty much accurately describes this movie.
But then again, is “Piranha 3-DD” any different from the hundreds of B-movies I’ve seen? Not really. As a sequel to a mainstream horror movie, it’s a piece of junk. But as a run of the mill B-flick, it’s pretty standard stuff. There are random shots of naked women running around the pool, a worthless Gary Busey cameo, and scenes of splashing and blood that inevitably happen when a school of CGI fish swarms your pool. I wanted a little more quality out of this sequel but I didn’t get it. I was so sure this movie poster wouldn’t lie to me. Oh well. There’s always “Piranha 3-DDD”. Triple the dollars. Triple the deception. Can’t wait.
Sister Sarah is a bad nun. She gets mixed up with some drug dealing pimps who can’t wait to rip her vow of chastity from her. When a drug deal goes sour, (as they often seem to do), Sister Sarah is thrown into the whorehouse. The humiliations and drug abuse pile up until a Good Samaritan saves Sarah from her private hell. For his troubles, Sister Sarah puts a bullet in him. Now she will have her vengeance against all men. Lowlife, stinking, rotten, no good, abusing men. She is a (sometimes) nude nun with a (sporadically) big gun.
“Nude Nuns with Big Guns”. There are two elements clearly stated in the title that better manifest itself in this B-movie. I’m pleased to tell you that there are nude nuns and they do, on occasion, carry big guns. But I was more concerned about the nude nuns than I was about the big guns. It could have been “Nude Nuns with Big Knives” and I would have been just as happy.
So Sister Sarah goes on a rampage and kills a lot of scum. Is there anything more to this movie? Anything else worth mentioning? Not really. The title pretty much highlights the message the filmmakers were trying to convey. Well, there was a nice lesbian scene between Sister Sarah and another woman. That scene served as a crucial plot point to show Sarah’s tenderness manifesting itself with some sweet lovemaking. And yes, I’m just kidding. It was yet another scene of mindless exploitation to please the B-movie fans.
That pretty much sums up “Nude Nuns with Big Guns”. Mindless exploitation. I suppose it was trying to be a competent rip-off of a Robert Rodriguez movie. It even sampled some “Grindhouse” music and named its strip club the “Titty Flicker”. I’m sure Rodriguez is impressed with this tribute to his A-movie success. As for me, I found it to be a reasonable way to spend an afternoon. The nuns were nude and the guns were huge. That’s all I needed to see.
Five friends want to go to a cabin in the woods for the weekend. They want to party, get high, get laid and other things college students do at a cabin in the woods. But they’re not the only ones who want to see them take off for their backwoods party. A mysterious corporation is monitoring their activity to make sure that everything goes as planned. There are certain rituals that have to be followed if you want to have a successful venture into the woods. Will everything go as planned? Why does the corporation care about how to stage a creepy backwoods thriller? They know that they’re not the only ones watching. You have to keep your audience happy.
“Cabin in the Woods” is a brilliant movie. It is one of the few movies I have actually gone to see twice in the theaters. Round two was just as good. But this movie is shocking in how good it is in keeping you wondering why these potential horror movie victims are being monitored. You will have more fun watching this movie if you don’t know too much about it. All you need to know is that it is made for horror fans by acknowledging all of our hopes and desires for a horror flick.
What are the buttons that need to be pressed to stimulate the audience‘s senses? “Cabin in the Woods” explores this question by having two puppet masters, (Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford in hilarious performances), literally push the buttons that propels the story forward. If the “slut” victim doesn’t feel like having sex, Jenkins is there to release the pheromones necessary to get her juices flowing. Once she has opened her blouse to reveal her breasts, she has transgressed enough to warrant her death. Why showing breasts is a transgression I’ll never understand but the horror movie gods must be satisfied.
“Cabin in the Woods” kept me guessing throughout the entire movie. I knew that these college students were being set up but I had no idea why. I assumed it was for the amusement of some off screen entity but had no clue as to where this movie was heading. The ending of the movie is a huge payoff scene. I won’t spoil it for you here but just know that you won’t see it coming. I had a blast watching “Cabin in the Woods”. It needs to be seen. Loved it.
Josie Ho has a dream. She wants to buy a condo with a seaside view. But real estate in Hong Kong is a tad expensive. She’s had to work hard to save up enough cash but it looks as if her struggles are going to be rewarded with a new ocean front condo. Alas, it is not to be. The seller’s greed has raised the price and Josie cannot afford her dream home. What’s a despondent buyer to do? Kill them all of course.
“Dream Home” is a tale of Hong Kong real estate, greed, and the massacres they inevitably provoke. Josie’s life has been a tough one. She’s had to take care of her sick dad and then lament the fact that his life saving operation won’t be covered by insurance. She also had to contend with the man she was having an affair with actually having the gall to go back to his pregnant wife. What is this world coming to when a man won’t be faithful to his mistress? This will not do.
Josie’s life is full of stress and she needs to find a way to blow off a little steam. The perfect release from all of these real world problems is homicidal vengeance. Josie stalks her lover’s wife and attacks. The fact that the woman is pregnant means nothing to Josie. Her moral compass has broken but her aptitude for extreme violence is surprisingly high. In an ingenious move, Josie sticks a vacuum space bag over the pregnant woman’s head and sucks all of the air out of her body. Hell hath no fury, etc.
This violent episode turns out to be a training ground for Josie’s true targets: The scum who have stolen Josie’s dream home by actually living in it. Once Josie sets her sights on the dream home’s occupants, the movie becomes a long splatter episode as they all have to pay dearly for stealing Josie’s dream.
“Dream Home” is an interesting splatter flick. Frankly, it had a little more plot than I was expecting from a Category III movie. Did I really need to see scenes of a young Josie talking to her friend via the two cups and a string device? I would argue no. There is only so much set-up needed to get to the splatter highlights. This is not a parable which instructs us on the folly of the real estate market. This is a horror flick pretending that it’s teaching a lesson. Those pesky censors always fall for a supposed moral lesson.
But “Dream Home” has some violent content which satisfied me. It also didn’t hurt that Josie Ho looked good hacking and slashing her way across Hong Kong. I only hope that the Category III flick makes a comeback in HK cinema. That would be my dream. I won’t go homicidal if it doesn’t come true but I’d be upset.
A brother and sister are trapped in the woods with a madman. Meanwhile a car full of tennis players gets lost near the woods and run into the brother. This leads to mass confusion as the importance of friendship gets lost in the quest for survival. Before you know it, there are two cops and a park ranger thrown into the mix which leads to bloody results. Why is everyone going insane when they approach these woods? Who is the madman? Why are the brother and sister out there in the first place? So many questions but so few answers as madness seems to have an iron grip on anyone who ventures into the dark Israeli woods.
The first thing to know about “Rabies” is that no one has rabies. There’s no drooling St. Bernard dog, no one has Cabin Fever and no one gets rabid. Upon further research, the word Kalevet, (original title), can also mean “anything that isn’t good.” So it’s a very Kalevet afternoon in the woods for the characters in this movie. While there isn’t any rabies in the literal sense, everyone seems to go a little crazy. Sometimes they go a lot crazy. It’s just one of those Kalevet days.
“Rabies” is an Israeli made horror movie. A very unique horror film in that regard as I don’t recall ever seeing another Israeli made slasher flick. That would also explain why there was a scene with an air freshener painted with the Israeli flag dangling from a car rear view window. But I feel there may be some sort of subtle political message that perhaps I didn’t get. The movie may be trying to say something about the country going insane. Or maybe the filmmakers just don’t like the national park system. Or maybe the woods were close by and they decided to film there.
But if this movie wasn’t set in Israel, would it be as interesting? I’m not sure. One thing I am sure of is that Yael Grobglas is hot. She plays the blond tennis player who ventures into the woods. She was a pleasant sight to see as her world crumbled around her. There were extended scenes of her going to the bathroom, which one character insisted was hot, but I insist is not. I’m only saddened by the fact that she never consummated the lesbian crush that her teammate had on her.
“Rabies” is an interesting horror flick as it plays on the slasher conventions without fully committing to them. People are trapped in the woods, there’s a mad killer on the loose but nothing works out the way you think it would. It’s worth a look. The good news is that “Rabies” has plenty of bloodshed as the woods exert its homicidal hold over anyone who gets near it. The woods were completely Kalevet. Yael Grobglas wasn’t Kalevet though. She may have gone a little nuts, but nowhere near Kalevet.
Stripperland. It’s a magical place where strippers remove their clothes for free and everyone gets a complimentary lapdance. A land where the drinks are cheap, the music is always set to hip hop and the women bump and grind the night away. That land is locked away deep in my imagination. This film shows an alternative reality to my fantasy. Their version of Stripperland is full of zombie strippers that love to eat human flesh. My version is a lot more fun.
“Stripperland” is a B-movie take on “Zombieland”. It gladly rips-off every element of its A-movie predecessor. It also manages to mangle a few “Star Wars” quotes along the way just so you understand the level of geek knowledge the filmmakers possess. The plot is essentially the same. The only difference is that all of the zombies are strippers. Two guys hit the road to Stripperland, (Portland actually), to look for life and freedom from zombies. They pick up two sisters who also want to be free of undead strippers. There are many gory interludes along the road to freedom. It all ends in a strip club with zombie women trying to hold in their guts after being blasted by shotgun wielding grannies. Just like “Zombieland”. Well, the ending was a little different.
“Stripperland” is a competently made B-rip-off of “Zombieland”. It moves briskly along from one gory set piece to the other but doesn’t provide much excitement or humor along the way. One of the main characters has an obsession with baked goods. Instead of lusting after twinkies, he wants to taste well prepared cakes. That is as humorous as “Stripperland” gets. If that’s the only funny thing I can remember about a movie called “Stripperland”, you can probably feel OK about skipping this one.
There’s one big problem with “Stripperland”. If you’ve already seen “Zombieland”, you’ve seen a better version of this film. But I was hoping that this would be an unapologetically sleazy affair which would make up for its lack of creativity. But I was disappointed again. “Stripperland” is too nice. There should have been so many undead breasts flopping about I should have lost count. Remember this B-movie golden rule: Strippers who don’t strip are not strippers. I can’t emphasize this enough. There were plenty of zombie strippers lurching about but very few actually took the time to show their rotting bodies.
So shame on you Stipperland for making me want to visit your city. I came to Stripperland to visit your glory holes and all I got was this half-baked remake.