Sunday, December 13, 2009

"Live Evil" review

Live Evil (2009)

Director: Jay Woelfel
Writer: Jay Woelfel

Tim Thomerson ... The Priest
Mark Hengst ... Benedict
Åsa Wallander ... Sydney
Ken Foree ... Max
Lee Perkins ... Officer Hicks
Cassie Courtland ... Hot Party Girl
Elissa Dowling ... Jerry the Bartender
Jenny Hendrix ... Naked Party Girl #1
Ann Marie ... Naked Party Girl #2
Marlie Moore ... Naked Door Girl
Kimberly Sanders ... Roxy
Tiffany Shepis ... Spider
Cherrae L. Stuart ... Cee

I was sent this DVD. Vampires are on the hunt for clean blood. Since human beings have been polluting their bodies with drugs, alcohol, fast food, etc, the blood supply has become tainted. Vampires are now forced to prey on each other or be on the lookout for other "pure bloods". A (very) wayward priest, (Tim Thomerson), is hunting a clique of vampires that are tearing their way across the country. The vampires are heading to Los Angeles to find a Blood Dealer that can supply them with the pure blood they desire. The priest, with his trusty samurai sword by his side, will try to finish them off before their bloodsucking lust consumes us all.

I usually end up trashing most movies that are sent to me. I was expecting more of the same with this movie. It was getting to the point where I wasn't sure why filmmakers even wanted to send me their movies in the first place. But I'm happy to tell you that I was entertained by this low budget vampire flick. "Live Evil" was a pleasant surprise. It's not often I get to say that so we must celebrate this exercise in B-movie madness.

"Live Evil" has all of the exploitation elements necessary to make an entertaining B-flick. It's got a vengeful priest, amoral vampires, naked women appearing at random intervals and plenty of blood to keep things moving along. Its only hampered by it's low budget. Some scenes needed some more money thrown at them to make them more effective. But then again, I suppose it wouldn't be a B-movie if it had the money. "Live Evil" did the best it could with what it had.

There are a couple of familiar B-movie faces who pop up during "Live Evil". When I heard that I was getting sent this movie, I told my friends that I had a Tiffany Shepis vampire flick heading my way. They were very excited. Unfortunately, this turned out to be false as Shepis is only in the movie for five minutes during a vampire party scene. I'm also sorry to report that there isn't any Shepis nudity but there are a few topless women roaming around the party. I also noticed that Elissa Dowling was in the movie as well. I almost didn't recognize her as she plays the bartender with a full beard (?). But when I saw the tattoo on her stomach I knew it was her. Ken Foree is the host of the party who brings all of the B-movie people together.

"Live Evil" is a fun and inventive vampire flick. There is plenty of blood, guts, and action to satisfy B-movie fans. I got a kick out of it. It's worth a look.

SCORE: 2.5 out of 4 dead evil

Friday, December 11, 2009

"Cleavagefield" review

Cleavagefield (2009)

It's another late night romp through Wynorski's cleavage filled wonderland. This time we get a cut rate parody of "Cloverfield", cleverly titled "Cleavagefield". The movie starts off with a hot blonde having sex. She's unwinding before a party where she'll get naked again. Rebecca Love is already at the party having some bedroom fun with one of the girls. This is a good party. Then a monster shows up and ruins everything. The rest of the movie consists of the girls running around in heels, jiggling their way to freedom from cheap horny monsters.

"Cleavagefield" shows us once again Wynorski's obsession with filming the only thing that interests him in life: Topless women. Not sex, not anything kinky, just large breasted topless women. I can't even tell if he enjoys filming sex scenes. Every instance of coitus in this movie is filmed like they're either in a hurry to get it over with or is done so mechanically that the ladies are banging to the beat of Wynorksi's metronome. 1,2,3, bend your knees, 4,5,6, show me your [breasts].

It's clear at this point that Wynorski is just making home movies for himself. He has decided to bless us less fortunate late night viewers with a glimpse into his vast archive of topless adventures. Throughout "Cleavagefield", there are scenes of two blondes bouncing around Hawaii. These are supposed to be flashbacks that the main character is having while running away from the fattest monster in the world. But in reality they are flashbacks that Wynorski is having to his Hawaiian trip he took with these ladies. He has them vamp it up for his camera as they strip to please him. He also manages to coax a halfhearted sex scene out of them before losing interest. Once he's seen you pop the top a few dozen times, his mind starts to wander onto other breasts.

But there's one woman who doesn't stray far from Wynorski's mind, and that woman is Julie Smith. Everybody needs their muse and Miss JKS doesn't disappoint. Although I'm disappointed that she didn't show up in "Cleavagefield" until the very end of the movie. Wynorski should have known better than to hide his best babe away until the end.

Near the end of the movie, Rebecca Love shows up in Sgt. Julie Smith's laboratory to get checked out. Smith is a thorough doctor and must examine every inch of Ms Love's body. When Julie threw off her white lab coat to reveal a fish net body outfit, I knew "Cleavagefield" was about to take a very positive turn. Sure enough, Julie Smith's scene with Rebecca Love is the highlight of the movie. In fact, it's really the only scene worth watching although Rebecca Love's scene at the party wasn't too bad either.

So if you're up late one night and not sure what to do, "Cleavagefield" may be worth checking out. Certainly "Cleavagefield" is nothing more than another lazy excuse to show female breasts. But Wynorski is so committed to his particular infatuation that his love for heaving cleavage sometimes distracts you from the fact that he doesn't care about much else. Like plot, editing,coherency, etc.

SCORE: 2 out of 4 cleavage blessed Julies

Sunday, November 15, 2009

"Pulp Fiction" review

Pulp Fiction (1994)

Director: Quentin Tarantino
Writers: Quentin Tarantino Roger Avary

John Travolta ... Vincent Vega
Samuel L. Jackson ... Jules Winnfield
Tim Roth ... Pumpkin - Ringo
Amanda Plummer ... Honey Bunny - Yolanda
Eric Stoltz ... Lance
Bruce Willis ... Butch Coolidge
Ving Rhames ... Marsellus Wallace
Phil LaMarr ... Marvin
Maria de Medeiros ... Fabienne
Rosanna Arquette ... Jody
Peter Greene ... Zed
Uma Thurman ... Mia Wallace
Quentin Tarantino... Jimmie Dimmick
Harvey Keitel... Winston 'The Wolf' Wolfe

I received an email from a fellow movie review blogger who wanted to know if I wanted to do a guest post for her blog. Mermaid Heather is having a blog anniversary and is seeing what her favorite bloggers consider their favorite movies. Glad to know I fall in her favorite bloggers category. The timing is good for me because I needed a little break from bashing painful movies and was in the mood to heap some praise on a good film. So for my guest post, (and a review on my blog), I've chosen one of my favorite movies. "Pulp Fiction".

"Pulp Fiction" is three interwoven tales of drugs, blood, crime, dates with married junkies, fixed boxing matches, dead body disposals, and movie references galore. The first story has hitman Vincent Vega, (Travolta), taking out his bosses wife, (Uma Thurman), on a drug fueled "date". The second story follows Butch (Bruce Willis), and his quest to get his beloved watch back from gangsters and survive the day in hellish L.A. The last story goes back in time to follow Vincent and Jules, (Jackson), as they go about their business and handle the stress of having to dispose of a dead body.

"Pulp Fiction" starts off with hitmen Vincent (Travolta) and Jules (Jackson) paying a visit to some neglectful employees of Marcellus Wallace. Vincent nonchalantly informs Jules that he has been picked to babysit Mia Wallace while Marcellus is out of town. "You going to be taking Mia Wallace out on a date?" Vincent doesn't understand what the big deal is until he meets Mia. It turns out that she is even more in love with drugs than he is. The date goes well until Mia snorts up too much white powder. The rest of the story has Vincent scrambling to make sure Mia doesn't ruin the date by dying on him.

The second story has Bruce Willis obsessing over his gold watch. He has to leave town after a rigged boxing match but can't bear to part with his watch that his father left him. His decision to return into the heart of L.A. to retrieve it will cost him a heavy price as hitmen and other freaks are lying in wait for him.

The last story goes back in time to show what happened between Jules and Vincent's rendezvous with the wayward employees of Marcellus and Vincent's date with Mia. Vincent accidently blows a guy's head off in the back of the car while discussing the merits of divine intervention. They are so frazzled by having the guy's brain's splatter all over them that they need to call in an expert on body disposals. The Wolf, (Harvey Keitel), shows up to school them on the proper way to clean a blood soaked car.

"Pulp Fiction" is a near perfect movie. There are so many good elements to this movie it's hard to know where to start. From the writing, to the acting, to the direction, "Pulp Fiction" exceeds your expectations of what a crime movie is supposed to deliver. Samuel Jackson should have won an Oscar for his performance as Jules Winnfield. Why he didn't is a true injustice. John Travolta was also amazing as Vincent Vega. "Pulp Fiction" is Tarantino's best movie so far. It has inspired countless imitators but none have even come close to being as potent as "Pulp Fiction".

But for me, Uma Thurman was the highlight of "Pulp Fiction". If you don't fall in love with Uma Thurman after watching "Pulp Fiction" you are not human. Although I don't obsess over Uma's feet like Tarantino does, it's easy to see how men can fall under her spell. Her "date" with Travolta is a classic scene. Tarantino films her as if he is completely smitten with her and it's hard not to agree with him. Every look and gesture she portrays makes you a believer in her seductive charm.

"Pulp Fiction" is a must see movie. It has everything you could possibly want from a movie. It excels as entertainment and as cinema.

SCORE: 4 out of 4 Mia Wallace dates
You're gonna be takin' Mia Wallace out on a date?
It ain't a date. It's like when you and your buddy's wife go to a movie or somethin'. It's just... you know... good company. It's not a date.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

"Biohazard: The Alien Force" review

Biohazard: The Alien Force (1995)

Director: Steve Latshaw
Writer: Patrick Moran

James L. Miles ... The BioMonster
John Alexander ... Det. Morley
Dorothy Best ... Caitlan Palmer
Robin Chapman ... Newspaper Editor
Katherine Culliver ... Shana Alexander
Trevor David ... Donner
Tom Ferguson ... Quint
Susan Fronsoe ... Nicki Carstairs

An evil corporation, (is there any other kind?), is conducting an experiment to see if they can create a monster to wreck some cheap havoc. Their dastardly plan comes to fruition as an outrageously cheesy monster breaks free and runs wild. The beast wants to kill anyone who recklessly donated their DNA to help speed along his existence. Many fools will pay the ultimate price for daring to mess with mother nature and playing B-movie gods.

Monster on a rampage. It escapes from a lab. It wants to kill people. You know the drill. But while the monster is certainly a biohazard, he wasn't actually an alien force. Although in this instance, the filmmakers may be referring to the ecology definition of alien which states that its "An organism, especially a plant or animal, that occurs in or is naturalized in a region to which it is not native." Or maybe they were just trying to ripoff better Sci-fi movies. Or perhaps I'm thinking too much about this.

At any rate, the monster in "Biohazard: The Alien Force" was made out of the finest rubber money can buy. It was one of the few things I enjoyed about this movie. I was concerned the thing was going to catch on fire and release deadly toxins into the air. That would have been the real biohazard. That's how he should have threatened his victims: "One more step and my scales get torched. RARRRRRR!!!"

If you've seen one rubber suited alien bust out of a lab movie, you've seen them all. I keep thinking I've seen them all and yet there always seems to be one more B-movie biohazard waiting to strike. "Biohazard: The Alien Force" is from the same writer/director team that gave us "Dark Universe" or the "Monster in a marsh" movie. They believe in no-frills, straight ahead B-movie making. Monster, victims, death, the end. It gets the job done. That's not to say the job was done well mind you. Just done.

SCORE: 1.5 out of 4 biohazardous aliens

Monday, October 26, 2009

"Demon of Paradise" review

Demon of Paradise (1987)

Director: Cirio H. Santiago
Writers: Frederick Bailey C.J. Santiago

Kathryn Witt ... Annie
William Steis ... Keefer
Laura Banks ... Cahill
Frederick Bailey ... Ike
Leslie Scarborough ... Gabby (as Leslie Huntly)
Henry Strzalkowski ... Shelton
Nick Nicholson ... Langley

These B-movies really know how to sell themselves to a guy like me. I saw the video box cover and knew that this was a movie I had to rent. It had an illustration of a lizard man dragging a bikini-clad girl underwater. Illustrated covers are usually a sign of bad things to come. But since I never seem to take my own advice, I rented it anyway. I mean, come on! It had a lizard man and a girl in a bikini for crying out loud. It's got to be good.

A bunch of fishermen throw dynamite in the water and wake up the Demon of Paradise. This demon loves dynamite as he causes massive explosions with alarming regularity. It doesn't faze him as the monster loves the smell of dynamite in the morning. It smells like demon victory. Lizard man proceeds to attack everyone at the resort and only a few brave souls can stand up to him.

"Demon of Paradise" went exactly like I expected it to. It's a standard B-monster movie with a low budget and a cheap rubber costume. The demon had this hilarious habit of waving to his victims. Sometimes it seemed like he was trying to signal the director he was drowning but I think he was actually trying to scare his prey. Jaws sticks his fin out of the water when he charges his prey. The demon waves at you. It looked like he was waving from miles away but then he would suddenly appear and attack. Then there would be an explosion. No particular reason, just spontaneous demon combustion.

Another scene had the demon tackling a helicopter. The fools were dropping dynamite on him. Little did they know how much dynamite excites him. The demon shoots out of the water like a missile and drags the helicopter into the water. Then there was an explosion. Truly, a fine B-movie moment.

"Demon of Paradise" is cheap and stupid but entertaining. As these things go, it was decent. It gave me a few laughs. Demons, bikinis, etc.

SCORE: 2 out of 4 waving demons

Sunday, October 25, 2009

"Bachelor Party in the Bungalow of the Damned" review

Bachelor Party in the Bungalow of the Damned

Director: Brian Thomson
Writer: Brian Thomson

Trina Analee ... Michelle
Monique Dupree ... Emerald
Gregg Aaron Greenberg ... Sammy
Kaitlyn Gutkes ... Vermillion
Rebecca Hodges ... The Reader
Zoe Hunter ... Snowy
Lloyd Kaufman

I was sent this DVD. A bunch of guys head out to the Hamptons to have a bachelor party. They decide to have their party at a geeky friend's bungalow. Unfortunately, it turns out to be a bungalow of the damned. Bummer. But this doesn't stop the festivities as three strippers/escorts/hookers for the damned show up to give the guys a show before dispatching them to hell. Tensions arise as this was not the bachelor party they were hoping for. Only the one level headed friend can come to grips with the situation and do battle with the damned escorts.

"Bachelor Party in the Bungalow of the Damned" is a bad movie. Are you shocked to hear that? The acting is bad, the special effects are a joke and the horror is non-existent. Although it is obvious that the filmmakers had no intention of making a serious horror movie, it still would be nice to believe I was actually watching a movie instead of a bunch of guys goofing off with a camcorder at their friend's house.

While "Bachelor Party in the Bungalow of the Damned" keeps moving along, it's not heading anywhere worth watching. A B-movie title of that magnitude should have delivered a fun movie with bachelors running for their lives from demonic women. Instead the entire party is laid to waste within minutes which only leaves one guy left to fight off the hooker horde. Then the movie wanders off into some other ridiculous storyline about past humiliations, vampire spawning and other topics that don't have anything to do with hookers massacring a bachelor party.

However, there was one pleasant element in "Bachelor Party in the Bungalow of the Damned" and I must praise her now. Monique Dupree shows up as one of the escorts from hell and unveils her very large demonic breasts. She knew how to get the party started. She is also the only thing I liked about this movie. Her presence in this movie shows how absolutely vital the B-movie babes are. This movie was heading for the landfill until she showed up. Sometimes the B-movie women are the only thing that makes these movies watchable. This was one of those times.

SCORE: 1.5 out of 4 Moniques for the B-movie damned

Sunday, October 11, 2009

"Trailer Park of Terror" review

Trailer Park of Terror (2008)

Director: Steven Goldmann
Writer: Timothy Dolan

Nichole Hiltz ... Norma
Trace Adkins ... The Man
Priscilla Barnes ... Jean
Stefanie Black ... Tiffany
Jeanette Brox ... Bridget
Arielle Hakian ... Trailer park girl
Lindsay Johnston ... Nuclear Daughter
Michelle Lee ... Miss China
Hayley Marie Norman ... Amber

A trailer park is filled with despicable cretins who are trying to keep the one pretty girl in their midst from leaving. When they obnoxiously kill her fiance, she strikes a deal with a heavily armed guy to send the trailer park to hell. Flash forward a couple of years and a busload full of wayward youths strolls into town. Norma, (the pretty girl), asks them to stay the night so she can show them some southern zombie hospitality. You know, like some sweet tea, place to sleep, dismemberment, disembowelment, decapitation, etc.

"Trailer Park of Terror" starts off looking like it's going to be a lot of fun but then slowly devolves into the standard zombie flick. The complete destruction of the trailer park in the first fifteen minutes was a great way to start the movie. I was hoping this movie was going to go for something a little different. But then the standard horror movie victims got off the bus and made their way to their inevitably gory demise.

The redneck zombies all get a chance to have their gut munching turns with the delicious juvenile delinquents. There's the obese zombie who just wants her meat. Then you have a zombie who thinks he's Elvis and blasts his guitar from the rooftop. There are other southern (undead) stereotypes who manifest themselves and eat every wayward youth in sight.

But my favorite zombie let me down. There was a large breasted Asian masseuse zombie who specialized in happy endings. I was sure we were going to get a glimpse of her undead breasts but it was not to be. For some reason, she was a shy zombie and kept her robe on. For shame. Zombies should learn to let go of their pride and let their beautiful corpses rot away for all to see.

That's not to say the movie doesn't have some good gore moments. "Trailer Park of Terror" keeps a comedic tone as limbs are hacked off and devoured. There were some entertaining scenes as the zombies regularly clawed their way through the teens. But you get the feeling that you've seen this movie a few (hundred) times before and seen it done better.

"Trailer Park of Terror" is worth a look if you're in desperate need of some zombie thrills. If not, you can let this one go.

SCORE: 2.5 out of 4 dead trailer trash

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

"Halloween II" review

Halloween II (2009)

Director: Rob Zombie
Writer: Rob Zombie

Sheri Moon Zombie ... Deborah Myers
Chase Wright Vanek ... Young Michael (as Chase Vanek)
Scout Taylor-Compton ... Laurie Strode
Brad Dourif ... Sheriff Lee Brackett
Caroline Williams ... Dr. Maple
Malcolm McDowell ... Dr. Samuel Loomis
Tyler Mane ... Michael Myers
Danielle Harris ... Annie Brackett
Margot Kidder ... Barbara Collier

I met my friends at the Mann Chinese 6 in Hollywood to see a double feature. "The Final Destination" followed by "Halloween 2". It just felt like the right thing to do. We had just finished watching "The Final Destination" and decided to take a lunch break while we recuperated from the D-Box experience. The D-Box is a vibrating chair that keeps up with the movie and shakes when something exciting happens. We hoped that "Halloween 2" would turn out to be just as much fun as the first part of our double feature. We were very wrong.

Going from the euphoria of a shaking D-Box chair to this debacle was truly a sobering experience. We should have stopped while we were ahead. "Halloween 2" has Michael Myers joylessly slaughtering people so he can reunite with his baby sister. Many poor souls will die needlessly horrible deaths as a fake Laurie Strode, (there is only Jamie Lee Curtis), screeches and wails her way around town as she tries to escape Michael's wrath. A second rate Dr. Loomis, (there is only Donald Pleasence), shows up as a greedy, narcissistic con man who tries to cash in on murder and mayhem. Rob Zombie tries to as well but there is only one John Carpenter and he's not it.

Enough is enough. No more. No more needless, unwanted remakes of classic horror movies. How could Zombie, who is clearly a lover of pop culture and horror movies, go so wrong with this movie? Everything that makes the "Halloween" movies enjoyable is shamelessly discarded. Dr. Loomis was a great character in the original movie. Why does Zombie want to turn him into a sniveling weasel? Was he too enjoyable as he was? There is not one likeable character in this movie. Jamie Lee Curtis was perfect as the innocent Laurie Strode while Zombie's version is a whimpering basket case. And where was Michael Myers theme song? One of the most iconic horror movie theme songs in history is scrapped for no apparent reason as Zombie doesn't seem to have any other tricks up his sleeve. The only thing he knows how to do is film people being brutally murdered. In Zombie's world, everyone is pathetic and deserves to die.

But there is one notable exception for Zombie. He loves putting his wife in his movies. Now I have nothing against Sheri Moon Zombie but she did not need to be within miles of this movie. Sheri shows up as Michael's dead mother who guides him towards his murder filled destiny. She also manages to have a pale horse walking along side her which symbolizes Zombie's pretentiousness. Every time that ridiculous horse ended up on screen, my friend couldn't resist letting out a contemptuous snicker for the audience to hear. I heard you man. I was laughing on the inside.

There's a lot wrong with "Halloween 2" but is there anything right? Well, Zombie does enjoy inflicting pain on his characters and there are many scenes of blood and mutilation. But it's a joyless movie as Zombie has no sense of humor about horror movies and prefers to keep things miserable for the characters and the audience. He also has a fetish for the 60's and 70's as there are many references sprinkled throughout the movie. Laurie Strode and the girls kick out the jams and dress up as Rocky Horror Picture Show freaks. There is also an extended scene as "Nights in White Satin" plays on the TV. Now that's realistic. If there's one thing you can count on in late night television, it's videos of Moody Blues tunes. Well, I suppose it's his movie and he can do what he wants.

But what did he want to do? Make a disappointing sequel to a mediocre horror remake? Ahh, who knows what's going on in his head? All I can hope for is that John Carpenter is cashing in on these movies and getting some well deserved compensation for his contributions to the horror genre. Even Zombie's bloody misfire can't destroy all of the goodwill that the original "Halloween" has built up over the years. Maybe Zombie needs to watch it again to remember why he liked it in the first place. "Halloween 2" only shows his disdain and disrespect for the original slasher classic.

SCORE: 2 out of 4 dead horses

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Monday, September 21, 2009

"Sorority Row" review

Sorority Row (2009)

Director: Stewart Hendler
Writers: Josh Stolberg Pete Goldfinger

Teri Andrzejewski... Bra–Clad Sister
Adam Berry... Danny
Megan Wolfley... Trampoline Sister (as Megan Elizabeth Wolfley)
Marie Blanchard... Over-It Sister
Briana Evigan... Cassidy
Margo Harshman... Chugs
Rumer Willis... Ellie
Jamie Chung... Claire
Leah Pipes... Jessica
Carrie Fisher... Mrs. Crenshaw

I saw "Sorority Row" at the Arclight in Hollywood. Why I felt the need to pay a premium to watch this movie is unknown. I was one of three guys in the theater. The other two were near the back. I had three rows near the front all to myself. I think one of the guys was a regular at the Arclight as some of the ushers seemed to know him. Only die hard horror fans made it out to see this one. Slashers hunting sorority girls is a time honored horror movie tradition that needs to be embraced every time it creeps its way into a movie theater.

The girls of Theta Pi decide to pull a prank on some dim-witted guy. They want him to believe that his girlfriend is dead and that they have to dispose of the corpse. Hilarious! But their acting is too convincing as the guy feels the need to take matters into his own hands. He plunges a tire iron through her chest to make sure all of the blood pours out of her lifeless body. The problem is that she wasn't really dead. Now they really do have to dispose of a body and keep their dark secret from getting exposed. Months go by and a tire iron wielding lunatic starts stalking them at their graduation party. Could it be the girl come back from the dead? Who else could have known about their grisly prank? Someone knows what they did last summer...

"Sorority Row" makes the classic slasher movie blunder. It actually tries to have a plot. Is there anything more superfluous for a slasher movie than a plot? The guilt and accusations that arise form butchering one of their sorority sisters makes the movie much more convoluted than it needed to be. You don't need a plot when it comes to these movies. You have slashers and sorority girls. The movie writes itself! Just turn the slasher loose on their pajama parties and the movie will turn out just fine.

At their graduation party, the girls get picked off one by one as the slasher moves his way up the sorority ladder. The killer employs a tricked out tire iron with various knifes attached to each end. Some of the kills are fun but most are tame. The girls are the usual slasher movie cliches waiting around to get slaughtered. "Sorority Row" doesn't have any scenes that really stand out but it does provide a few gory kills and some brief nudity to assuage one's hunger for slasher movie entertainment. If you're in desperate need of seeing sorority girls screaming, it may be worth a look. If not, then you can let this one go.

One last thought, "Sorority Row" asks a very important question that we must answer now. Who was the hottest sorority girl at Theta Pi? Most of the girls looked good but for my money I would go with Jamie Chung, (Claire). She had the prettiest face to go with her hard body. None of the main characters in "Sorority Row" got naked but Jamie would get my vote as the girl most likely to succeed if she had. If she didn't succeed, at least I would have appreciated the effort.

SCORE: 2.5 out of 4 sorority row girls

Top of the Row.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

"Jennifer's Body" review

Jennifer's Body (2009)

Director: Karyn Kusama
Writer: Diablo Cody

Megan Fox ... Jennifer Check
Amanda Seyfried ... Needy Lesnicky
Johnny Simmons ... Chip
Adam Brody ... Nikolai Wolf
J.K. Simmons... Mr. Wroblewski
Amy Sedaris... Needy's Mom

Jennifer, (Megan Fox), is having boy trouble. She needs to keep eating them or she will die. A horrific fire serves as the catalyst that allows a demon to possess her. Megan Fox is a succubus. Not surprisingly, many men happily follow her to their doom. Her BFF, (Amanda Seyfried), starts to realize that there might be something amiss with her hot friend after she shows up at her house drenched in blood. Dead bodies start piling up in their small town as Jennifer uses her body as bait so she can chow down on the horny high school guys. Only a true best friend can stop Jennifer's evil.

I walked into this movie with one hope, one dream for "Jennifer's Body" to fulfill. I dreamed of a scene where they linger over Jennifer's naked body. It is with profound sadness that I have to tell you that there are no Megan Fox nude scenes in this movie. This is clearly the most obvious error in the film. The title promises Jennifer's body yet they do not deliver it. For shame. There was one scene where she was swimming topless in a lake, (not sure why but who cares), and she slowly pulls herself out of the water. The camera veers away from any of the interesting Fox parts so that we don't see too much of Jennifer's body. Why couldn't there have been a scene where she stretches out on the dock and does some topless sun bathing? Where is Jennifer's Body when I needed it?

So without salacious scenes of Megan Fox's nubile body, what else does this movie have to offer? There are a couple of bloody scenes as Jennifer tears open a few necks but nothing too gory to get excited about. "Jennifer's Body" is not scary enough to be an effective horror movie and it isn't funny enough to be a comedy. So what exactly is it? It's a Megan Fox vehicle disguised as a Diablo Cody high school fantasy. I can't believe that there weren't any characters named Juno in this movie. I was expecting to see a pregnant girl get bitten and say something witty while she's dying like "but I just drank my weight in Sunny D". It's never too early to start referencing your own work.

But let's discuss what's really important here. What is it about Megan Fox? Is Megan Fox just a younger version of Angelina Jolie? No she isn't. She's a young Megan Fox and we must cherish these precious moments that we have with her. "Jennifer's Body" gives us a lot of sexy scenes of Megan but they're just not lascivious enough for me. If they had put a prolonged Fox nude scene in this movie, the box office gross would have tripled. If Amanda Seyfried had joined in, it would have quadrupled. If there was a prolonged lesbian scene between the two, the sky would have been the limit. You have to think about the exploitation potential that a horror movie has to offer. Well, you don't have to but I like to.

Overall, "Jennifer's Body" is a fair movie. It's got sexy girls making bloody messes so it can't be all bad. It's trying to be a little different than the average horror flick but ends up being just another piece of Hollywood product off of the assembly line. It was designed for Megan Fox to strut her stuff and in that respect it succeeds.

One last thought, the best scene in the movie is the one that saved "Jennifer's Body" for me. Jennifer shows up at her friend's house to tell her the truth about her demonic demeanor. But first, they have to kiss hello. The camera goes into extreme close-up so we can enjoy every subtle nuance of two pretty girls kissing. This scene was magical. This is a brilliant example of how to film women kissing each other. Concentrate on the lips and you can't go wrong. As you may know, this is what girls do when they're alone. Oh yes. It's true. This beautiful scene helped save "Jennifer's Body". I wasn't sure how I was going to rate this one until Megan Fox and her lips saved the day. Now, it's worth a look.

SCORE: 3 out of 4 Jennifer's kisses

And Jennifer's Body

Saturday, September 12, 2009

"Busty Cops: Protect and Serve!" review

Busty Cops: Protect and Serve! (2009)

Director: Michael Whiteacre
Writer: William Williamson

So there I was, watching what I thought was "Busty Cops 2" on late night Cinemax. That's what the cable guide said. This was not "Busty Cops 2". It's actually "Busty Cops: Protect and Serve!" I had seen half of it one night but wanted to watch it from the beginning so I could get the full Busty Cops experience. Since I couldn't wait another minute to get some Busty Cops in my life, I discovered the joys of cable on demand. It was ready to go in seconds. I demanded some Busty Cops and Cinemax delivered.

As I'm watching this rough facsimile of a movie, I swore I had seen some of these scenes before but I couldn't remember where. One scene has Hannah Harper in front of a brick wall and it jogged my memory to visions of another Busty Cops adventure. For the answer to the origin of my Busty Cops flashback we must go Back In Time....

I had seen clips of this movie when it was known as "Busty Cops: Back in Time". The director, Michael Whiteacre, shared a few scenes from the movie with me awhile back. In his version, the Busty Cops travel back in time to the 1980's to do battle against nefarious Reagan-era bad guys. He didn't share any of the sex scenes with me, (dang it!), but there were a few funny scenes that showed the Busty Cops hanging out in the 80's. Cocaine and Rubik's Cubes were prevalent in most scenes. Belinda Gavin was also in an extended scene with a coked out surfer guy.None of the scenes I saw made it into the finished movie.

So now in 2009 we have "Busty Cops: Protect and Serve!". But what the heck is it? It is a stripped down, bare bones, brutally efficient, cut all the noise and get naked version of Whiteacre's movie. It also makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. But it is clear that the businessmen behind this spectacle are not interested in little details like plot, coherence or anything else that distracts from the softcore action.

"Busty Cops: Protect and Serve!" is a hard movie to describe but an easy one to like as one sex scene rolls into another. Nikki Nova, Hannah Harper and Lexi Marie are the Busty Cops. They are sent on a dangerous mission to get laid as much as possible. An annoying narrator tries to hold the film together but only ends up exposing the movie for the stapled together mess that it is.

So "Busty Cops: Protect and Serve" took the sex scenes from the original movie and trashed the rest. This is B-movie madness in action. The good news is that there are some quality sex scenes to enjoy. Hannah Harper has the best sex scene with two other women in front of some blood red lockers. This scene is followed almost immediately by a foursome with Aimee Sweet and Nikki Nova. While an abundance of nipple licking is going on, there is a glimpse of a "Footloose" poster on the wall. Then the girls go over to a dresser drawer and there is a pile of cocaine on it. A few images of the 80's managed to make their way into the finished movie after all.

But not all of the sex scenes were working for me. Lexi Marie was fairly disappointing in this one. She has one sex scene with a guy on some stairs and another with two submissive guys in a dream sequence. Both scenes are shooting blanks as she seems dazed and confused as to why she's there. Although there's an orgy scene where a girl wearing pigtails, (Princess Leia look maybe?), starts making sweet love to Lexi's rear end. That whole sex scene was pretty good.

Overall, "Busty Cops: Protect and Serve" has some good softcore sex scenes and little else. It is a nonsensical late night adventure with plenty of sex and nudity to help keep you awake. Although, I have to wonder what Whiteacre's version would have looked like if the Cops had hopped into the Delorean so they could tell some 80's punk to go ahead and make their day. I wonder how the movie ended up as this version from the scenes I originally saw. I wonder...

SCORE: 2 out of 4 busty cops

I don't know the context of this cut scene, (nor do I need to), but Belinda bound and gagged should have been in the movie for the Busty Cops to rescue. Busty Cops in big trouble. Who will save them? The editors got around that dilemna as this scene is also nowhere to be found.

Friday, August 14, 2009

"KillerKiller" review

KillerKiller (2007)

Director: Pat Higgins
Writer: Pat Higgins

Richard Collins ... Perry
Scott Denyer ... Samuel
Dutch Dore-Boize ... Lawrence
Cy Henty ... Rosebrook
Rami Hilmi ... Wallis
Danny James ... Victor
James Kavaz ... Harris

So there's a killer running loose in an insane asylum. Actually there is a killer killer. A bunch of psychos have been released from their cells by some mysterious force. As the loons bicker and argue about who could have freed them, the mysterious being, (who cleverly disguises itself as a hot blonde), picks off the crazies one by one. Who is this malevolent beast who sometimes, (one time actually), dresses as a cheerleader to send serial killers to their grave? Is she the ghosts of victims past? Does anyone care?

I take B-movie advertising seriously. I don't know why but I do. You'd think after all this time I would get the message that B-movie showmen are a deceitful bunch of weasels who get perverse pleasure out of ripping me off. The cover of "KillerKiller" has a blonde cheerleader holding a pom pom in one hand and a bloody hatchet in the other. Based on this cover, I thought it was reasonable to expect to see a killer cheerleader attacking the inmates of an asylum. I was at least expecting a campy horror movie showing psychos being hunted by an even bigger blonde psycho. I was wrong again.

"KillerKiller" is a actually a character study of different inmates and how they deal with the sins they've committed. The blonde beast that has been unleashed on them attacks them using their own sick murder fantasies against them. So if a psycho likes to remove people's organs and replace them with automotive machinery, then he'll turn up on the slab getting his guts ripped out. If some guy likes putting a power drill through hooker's heads, then his body will get some ventilation, etc.

Thankfully, there is a murder tag team who loves killing cheerleaders. When they slip into her fantasy world, she appears as cheerleader bait for them to pounce on. This whips the fiends up into a murderous frenzy but the cheerleader strikes first and ruins their day by butchering them. This is the first and last appearance of the killer cheerleader in the movie.

Since selling a movie based on a bunch of guys sitting around an ugly room arguing with each other is near impossible, the marketing department decided to latch on to the one exploitable element in the movie and plastered the killer cheerleader on the DVD cover. My expectations were dashed. Dreams have died. This is not a killer cheerleader movie. It should have been. The movie they made is not nearly as entertaining as some whacked out cheerleader rampaging through the halls of an insane asylum would have been.

Overall, "KillerKiller" was disappointing. It teased me with its fraudulent advertising. I wanted bloody pom poms, I got maniacs debating each other in a foul, paint peeling room. Nothing of interest comes out of their banal conversations. How many times can they argue about who's killing them? They're serial killers for crying out loud. Start acting on your homicidal impulses and do something interesting. Also, the sound quality of the DVD is terrible. Actually, disgraceful would be a better word for it. You have to blast the volume to hear the dialogue. When the blonde monster finally shows up, you have to turn it down quickly before the neighbors call the cops on you.

One last thought, I did learn something from this British movie. There are no cheerleaders in England. I never thought about it before but I suppose cheerleading is an American phenomenon. It makes me wonder why they bothered to put a cheerleader on their cover if there was no way a British serial killer could have racked up a body count. Could it be they just wanted the exploitation fans rental money? I wonder...

SCORE: 1.5 out of 4 violent cheerleaders

Sunday, August 09, 2009

"G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra" review

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009)

Director: Stephen Sommers
Writers: Stuart Beattie David Elliot

Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje... Heavy Duty
Christopher Eccleston... McCullen / Destro
Joseph Gordon-Levitt... The Doctor / Rex
Byung-hun Lee... Storm Shadow
Sienna Miller... Ana / Baroness
Rachel Nichols... Shana 'Scarlett' O'Hara
Kevin J. O'Connor... Dr. Mindbender
Ray Park... Snake Eyes
Jonathan Pryce... U.S. President
Dennis Quaid... General Hawk

Call off the Oscar race. Recall the ballots. Voting is not necessary. We have a winner. The Best Picture of the year has arrived. Actually, I think "G.I. Joe" might sweep the entire ceremony. It could grab a couple of statues for Best Director, Writer and all of the acting awards. Book the limos now as the entire cast and crew will be up on the stage receiving accolades from their peers. Wait till you hear the fans screaming "G.I. Joe!" outside the awards ceremony. It will be a magical night. Well, actually it won't. The only way "G.I. Joe" is getting into the Oscars is if they invade the building and repel down from their helicopters.

Terrorists have seized a dangerous weapon which threatens the existence of humanity. Time to call in G.I. Joe. The Joes spring into action because when others fail, they don't. The terrorists have a green cloud of death which eats metal and they can't wait to unleash their maniacal plans on the planet. The Joes do battle with the leather suited Baroness and her minions all over the world. From Paris to Egypt to the polar ice caps, there is nowhere on Earth you can run from the Joes and their quest to blow up everything they see.

"G.I. Joe" is no better or worse than the hundreds of other brain dead action movies that plop off of the Hollywood conveyor belt. It is product made for a perceived audience of neanderthals and the ten year olds who love them. But the men and women who run Hollywood studios are not stupid. These are very intelligent, shrewd business people who hire filmmakers to make their companies profitable. The filmmakers comply with their corporate masters wishes and deliberately make imbecilic movies. The continued financial success of these decisions has doomed us all. We can expect more "G.I. Joe" movies to rape and pillage our wallets for years to come.

A common defense among mainstream filmmakers will be to spout out something along the lines of, "Just turn off your brain and go on a two hour thrill ride!" or "I'm giving the audience exactly what they want.". But what does the "audience" want? How do filmmakers come up with the magic formula that gives us exactly what we desire? Part of the fun of watching movies is to try to figure out what the filmmakers were thinking when they made their creative decisions. After seeing "G.I. Joe", it's clear that they think we're all a bunch of morons who like to see things blow up real good. The contempt Hollywood shows for their audience is staggering.

Of course, I'm the kind of guy who watches B-movies and enjoys their sleazy antics. But B-movie filmmakers have an excuse for making bad movies. They don't have the resources or (sometimes) the talent to make a good movie. "G.I. Joe" had all the time and money in the world to come up with an entertaining movie. While there were some scenes that were enjoyable, (the Paris chase scene), most of the movie is taken up by monotonous action sequences. You've seen one secret underwater army base blow up, you've seen them all.

One last thought, I'd like to comment on the only truly important question that "G.I. Joe" asks us to consider: Who's hotter, the Baroness, (Sienna Miller), or Scarlett, (Rachel Nichols)? In the cartoon, it was definitely the Baroness but in the movie, I may have to go for Scarlett. She was showing off her cleavage even more than the Baroness. And they both wore skin tight leather outfits which showed off all of their curves. Clearly, an extended fight between these two was the crucial scene that was missing from this movie. Remember filmmakers, it's all about giving the audience what they want.

SCORE: 2.5 out of 4 leather suited warriors

Saturday, August 08, 2009

"Vice Girls" review

Vice Girls (2000)

Lana Clarkson ... Jan Cooper
Liat Goodson ... Edith Block
Kimberley Roberts ... Mindy Turner (as Kimberly Roberts)
Bart Muller ... John Russo
Warren Draper ... Captain Chandler
Richard Gabai ... Quentin / Hilowitz
A. Michael Baldwin ... Tralaine
Caroline Keenan ... Polly
Ari Bass... Man at Party
David Gohman... Man At Party
Jim Wynorski... Man with Top Popper

There's a serial killer on the loose in Hollywood. He likes videotaping himself while he kills teenage runaways. This fiend must be caught. Lana Clarkson and two other babe detectives need to hit the sleazy streets to see what they can find out. Their investigation takes them deep into the sordid underbelly of L.A. And when I say sordid underbelly, I really mean cheap movie sets. The killer's trail leads them to a host of scummy characters. Could the fat pornographer be behind the killings? What about the conceited director? How about the Quentin Tarantino wannabe filmmaker? The Vice Girls are on the hunt.

"Vice Girls" is a typical B-thriller. Actually, it's little lighter than I was hoping. I was in the mood for a sordid "Charlie's Angels" rip-off. The DVD cover has one of the Vice Girls, (Liat Goodson), in a skin tight leather skirt. I was hoping to see more of her but was denied. In fact, only one of the Vice Girls gets naked. Lana Clarkson gets topless in a quick sex scene in the bathroom. The other Vice Girls don't join the party. How sad that Lana had to carry the nudity burden for her whole squad.

Unfortunately, "Vice Girls" is just not as much fun as it should be. Lana Clarkson does what she can but the other two Vice Girls are non-entities. There was one scene where the tech advisor hinted that she knew the other Vice Girl back in San Francisco. I thought this was leading to a lesbian scene but was denied. Instead, they started beating each other up in a rather inept fight scene. Another scene had two teenage runaways talking about their latest shoplifting adventure in a stationary store. One girl turns to the other and says something like, "You're my only friend". I thought this was also going to lead to a lesbian scene but was denied again. Maybe I think every scene is going to lead to a lesbian scene. But when you have a movie called "Vice Girls" with the tagline "They're no Angels!" it's not too unreasonable to think that the girls will get some vice in their life.

But "Vice Girls" has some fun scenes as they look for the mad killer. One scene has the girls going undercover in the pornographer's store so that they can check out the lecherous creeps. They decide that they need a secret way to film the weirdos so they devise a brilliant solution. One Vice Girl starts dancing with a camera inserted on the nipples of her bra. They know where the guys will be staring. This is solid police work. Unfortunately this also means they can't take their camera bra off as they don't want pictures of the floor. I felt as let down as the wackos. We both felt swindled.

So where is the vice in "Vice Girls"? It's hard to find. Only Lana Clarkson knew what she was doing in this movie. She drags a guy into the bathroom to have sex. Twice! Thank you Lana for saving "Vice Girls". Lana gets topless and the movie is better for it. At least hard drinking, amazon woman Clarkson indulged in some much needed vice.

SCORE: 2 out of 4 vice girls

Side note: I was looking for a hot picture of Lana Clarkson to post but went with some real Vice Girls instead. If you do a Google search on Lana Clarkson you'll actually end up with more pictures of Phil Spector than Lana. Well, seeing Spector and his many fake wigs drained me of my Lana desire. RIP Lana.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

"Satan's Baby Doll" review

Satan's Baby Doll (1982)
AKA La bimba di Satana

Director: Mario Bianchi
Writers: Gabriele Crisanti

Jacqueline Dupré ... Myra / Maria
Mariangela Giordano ... Solo
Aldo Sambrell ... Antonio Aguilar
Joe Davers
Giancarlo Del Duca
Alfonso Gaita

I saw the cover for "Satan's Baby Doll" and was hooked. It was love at first sight. I was whispering sweet love songs to it: Suddenly, life has new meaning, to me... I can't imagine how it's escaped my attention. Surely I would have heard something about this obviously fantastic film by now. The DVD cover has a winged demon, (Satan I suppose), rubbing a girls naked body, (Satan's baby doll I presume). This exploitation film has been kept from me for too long. It was time to see what Satan does with his baby doll.

"Satan's Baby Doll" has nothing to do with Satan or babies or dolls. It concerns the trials and tribulations of a dysfunctional family inside a big, scary castle. The matriarch of the family dies but her horny soul wants to live on through her frequently naked daughter. The mother wants to use her to get revenge on everybody in the house so she can finally be with the one person she truly loved. She's had a crush on the castles live-in nun, (who's also frequently naked), and has come back from the dead for her chaste body.

Nothing says good times like lustful possessions and naked nuns. "Satan's Baby Doll" has all of the elements of a classic exploitation flick. Lascivious evil spirits, gratuitous nudity and naughty nuns are a good starting point for any B-movie. But now I realize why I've never heard of this movie before. "Satan's Baby Doll" does not come close to the sleaze potential it's DVD cover art promises. The idea of a mother coming back from the dead to use her daughter's body for revenge should have been a sleaze gold mine but the concept is wasted on banal scenes of bloodless revenge.

Every time the mother's spirit jumped into her daughter's body, I was expecting the daughter to jump on someone else's body for a little revenge sex from beyond the grave. Instead the possessed girl dispatches her mother's enemies as quickly and as mundanely as possible. You would think a soul brought back from the dead would be filled with insatiable bloodlust but you'd be wrong. There is almost no blood shown in any of the daughter's attacks. I was quite disappointed at the dead mother's lack of depraved imagination.

On a positive note, "Satan's Baby Doll" does have copious amounts of nudity. All of the women get naked at regular intervals. But overall it's not sleazy enough to necessitate a viewing. Still, the DVD cover is amazing. It might be the sleaziest cover of all time. I just wish it had the movie to go along with its salacious picture of an ass grabbing devil.

SCORE: 2 out of 4 satan's baby dolls