Monday, June 2, 2014

Junesploitation Day 2: Slashers!

If you think you're safe...you're DEAD wrong!

53 comments:

  1. Pete Walker's SCHIZO (1976) on Amazon Prime for the first time.

    What a pleasant and unexpected delight. Most slashers feature a complete mad psycho offing off random strangers along with a convoluted plot/story forcing all these people to be in close proximity to one another. "Schizo" is different that that it's how each of the handful of victims know each other and their relationship to the stalker/killer (whose identity and whereabouts we're aware of at all times) that guides the idiot plot decisions, which looked at with the hindsight of how it all ends kind-of pass the smell test. I'm at a disadvantage here because I don't want to reveal too much (I'm not even mentioning movie comparisons or other directors who clearly pillaged from Walker to build their own classic horror work), but "Schizo" is that rare type of horror film where not paying attention to little things or trying to guess the end game pays off huge when the final credit rolls. Gore hounds need not apply (it delivers enough to barely qualify for a 70's "R" rating) but those that want some smarts to go along with their slashing can do a lot worse than "Schizo." It's not a genre classic, it just feels like one for a handful of minutes after you've finished watching it.

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    1. You sold me. I'll write up something else, but I'll be watching this too. It's been on my watch list for way too long besides.

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    2. Thanks. Believe me, one or two words (or even a movie comparison) would have totally ruined it for someone that hasn't seen "Schizo," because this one has been ripped off as much as "Schizo" pillaged from what came before it (which nobody paid much attention to because, you know, no internet ruining everything for everybody back then). ;-)

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  2. Blood Harvest (1987) clip

    Threadbare and dull yet somewhat unsettling midwestern slasher from the director of The Giant Spider Invasion. Stars the genuinely fucking terrifying TINY TIM as a mentally unbalanced man-child in clown makeup who menaces the frequently nude heroine in her parents' farmhouse in-between bouts of crying and falsetto renditions of nursery rhymes. Of note: the girl has a poster for Commando on her bedroom ceiling.

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    1. Also watched today:
      Terror on Tour (1980)
      KISS knock-off band inspires groupie murderer. The Soup Nazi makes his debut.
      Bloodbeat (1983)
      Samurai ghost murders midwesterners somehow. See Chaybee1's review below.
      The Toolbox Murders (1978)
      For Cameron Mitchell, crazy runs in the family.

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  3. The Initiation (1984)

    As I watched this movie i had the idea of what I was going to write in mind because everything about the plot and killer were laid out, seemingly unintentionally, from the opening scene. However, my plans were dashed when in the movie's climax a massive twist occurs that had no bearing on anything that came before it, resulting in a very rushed exposition delivery explaining what the hell was meant to have been going on through out the movie. This turned my "Oh, come on. Its Obviously....." mind set into a "You Waaaa? But, Who, why.....huh?" mind set.

    Points of note to give you an idea what sort of movie it was: The majority of kills are done with a gardening trowel, the comedy relief is in the form of a research assistant who's hook is that she is zany and not feminine although she wears a dress majority of the time and delivers all her lines in a very dull manner, and the love interest is a Psychology researcher (para-psychology actually because thats interesting? but there is no paranormal goings on, so..yeah) who we know if a psychologist because he works Jung and Freud into every second line of dialogue...and he gets real angry for no reason all the time.
    But there's a Daphne Zuniga shower scene, so, worth the price of admission? no not really. (Druidiaspolitation)

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    1. ps. im only realising how long my comments are after i post. Theyll be shorter in the future.

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    2. Your comments are fine! BETTER than fine.

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  4. All the Boys Love Mandy Lane (2006)

    Film is a misguided attempt to make a slasher film with a post-Columbine bent, but which ultimately falls flat. It’s too serious to make an entertaining horror movie, and too shallow to make a decent serious movie. The movie has good production value, but sacrifices coherent characters and narrative on the altar of the TWIST, which is actually not too hard to guess. Starring Amber Heard, Michael Welch, and Discount Robert Pattinson.

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    1. This is my choice for tonight. I've been meaning to watch it for what feels like forever. I have a feeling it will not be worth the wait.

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    2. The screenwriter is one of my son's profs at AFI!

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    3. I was supremely disappointed with this one, but that was unfairly due to the amount of hype around it, and the years and years when it was unavailable. A shame all around.

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  5. Killer's Moon (1977)

    Four dangerous mental patients are roaming the countryside and thanks to a large exposition dump we realize that they have been experiminated on to the point where they are under the belief that they are all in a dream. Wouldn't you know that a group of British schoolgirls' bus just broke down in said countryside?

    This barely qualifies as a slasher. Except for an axe killing, most of the deaths are bloodless. This movie is more focus on being clumsily titillating and EXTREMELY rapey. Most of the schoolgirls characters are just there to be nude and to be completely incompetent(one character faints every time she is in peril). The one proactive female character tells a fellow schoolgirl to forget she was raped by one of the mental patients. Ugh. Skip it.

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  6. My Bloody Valentine (1981)

    Actors who can act. Characters who have character. Killer who works on more than one (2) level. Are you sure this is an 80s slasher movie?
    Being so early in the 80s this movie has more of a 70s feel, in a good way.
    It also has a boiling pot of water death. Its not quite corn-water (its hot dog water), but its close enough.
    And seriously Creepy Prophet-of-doom Bar Keeper, its not that funny. Bipolarbarmansploitation

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  7. Wolf Creek (2005)

    Brutal Australian exploitation slasher, often underrated and mislabeled as "torture porn". It has a mean streak a mile long, but I find it way too full of suspense to be written off as a torture flick. Its shot well and the acting is believable, despite the thin characters. This isn't a fun film by any stretch of the imagination and it clearly owes a lot to Hoopers' Texas Chainsaw, but it is well done. I think most genre fans will find things to like about it, and its definitely worth a watch.

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  8. BLOOD HOOK (1987)
    An evil fisherman is killing people off in and around a small-town fishing tournament. “Fishing” is the movie’s gimmick, in case you couldn’t tell. This is described as a horror-comedy, and it’s directed by Jim Mallon, who went on to co-produce Mystery Science Theater 3000, so I had high hopes for a good time. But, unfortunately, it’s… just… so… boring. The killer’s M.O. is uninspired. He uses his rod and reel to stab you with fish hooks, which seems like it would be more flesh wound-y than murder-y. Even so, the kills are few and far between. There’s way too much business with the tournament and the characters sitting around their cabin (in the woods!) doing nothing. Bummer.

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  9. The Funhouse (1981): Listen to Patrick - watch this movie! I really loved it. So filled with fun, I also really like the way they use The Funhouse and will definitely watch this again in the future.

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    1. Nice! Glad you liked it. In the last few years it has become one of my favorites.

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  10. Slumber Party Massacre II (1987)

    I enjoyed the first Slumber Party Massacre when I saw it for Scary Movie Month, but this is a pretty major step down from that one. In a shocking move for a 75 minute movie, not a goddamn thing happens for about the first 45 minutes. The last half hour is gory, silly, exploitative fun, but getting there is a draaaaaaaaag. Points for the crazily nonsensical electric guitar-slash-drill murder machine (hooray for truth in advertising!) and a fun guy-on-fire stunt, but the movie as a whole is a disappointment.

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  11. Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998)

    Confession time. Apart from the original this is the first time I have watched a Halloween movie. And what a way to go! I’m not a big horror guy (obviously), but I just found this so boring. All the scares are entirely score driven and staggeringly unimaginative. The film wants to be Scream, we even see a scene on TV, but only really shares expensive(ish) production values. LL Cool J reading erotic stories to his girl is one of those ‘What The Fuck?’ moments while (SPOILERS!) Joseph Gordon-Levitt gets his name on the opening credits, after he has already been killed off! Also, and this may be my ignorance, why is Michael super-fast off camera but shuffles around like a zombie on screen? The whole thing is dead like Michael’s eyes… Is it worth watching any of the others?

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    1. I like Part 4 a lot and Part 3 has its own crazy charms. I go back and forth on 2 every time I watch it (right now I'm in a "like it" cycle). If you liked the first movie, I still think you should check out the sequels through 4 but you can probably stop there.

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    2. Loved the first one, just never felt compelled to watch the sequels for some reason. That's cool though, i'll save 2-4 for October!

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  12. Student Bodies (1981)

    Ineptly made but hilarious parody of slasher films, written and directed by Mickey Rose. There is a rumor that Michael Ritchie directed some of it. My favorite jokes revolve around an overzealous shop teacher obsessed with horse-head bookends and "The Breather."

    Highly recommended.

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  13. My Bloody Valentine 3D (2009) - First Viewing

    Aside from some above-average brutality to the kills, and one scene with wanton-gratuitous nudity, this is generic in every way. I just wish the same effort and creativity that went into the kills went into the rest of the movie. Also there is something inherently scary about a gas mask. Overall I would say skip it, watch my all-time favorite Slasher instead: Black Christmas (also Canucksploitation!).

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  14. Bloodbeat (1983)

    HOLY F, this movie! Slasher via samurai possession. my description cannot do it justice. Imdb's simply says "A woman who lives in deer-hunting country in rural Wisconsin is possessed by the spirit of a Japanese samurai warrior". If that's not enough - watch this - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9wJFp2oK8Cg&feature=kp

    One of the most fun films I have experienced in a while. A bit slow to get going, but it doesn't matter at all. Has instantly become a classic to me. Thank you Junesploitation!

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  15. Hatchet 2: I bought this one off Amazon and now have eventually got round to watching it. Should have came to it much sooner considering I loved the first one. I didn't love this as much but I thought it was a lot of fun with some pretty insane kills. I am very happy to pretend that the series ended with that last shot!

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    1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_sMG9ehoTa4

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  16. Nightmare on Elm Street 4

    I've never seen parts 4 or 5. Now I can say I have seen part 4 and that's it's boring, gross (bug girl) and a little depressing. Lisa Wilcox is cute though. It drove me nuts that everyone was sitting so close to each other in the movie theater scene.

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    1. I love 4. I know it's purely nostalgia and a crush on Lisa Wilcox (someone once sang about her being a stone fox, you may recall) talking, but 4 is the one I go back to most often. It's like cinematic comfort food for me. I love the Renny Harlin-ness of it all. And that Dramarama song is fantastic.

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    2. Sorry to crap on a movie you like then. I like the first one, three and New Nightmare. I'll finish off the series with part 5 in October. And then I'll go fall in love or something to pass the time.

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    3. Nothing to be sorry for! I recognize that it's not a particularly good (or even well-regarded) movie, I just dig it. I know that 1, 3 & 7 are all better (and all genuinely good-to-great movies), I just tend to watch 4 way more often.

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    4. I don't like that kid's spiky haircut. He's going to go bald putting all that goop in there. You know, if he survived.

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  17. The Prowler (1981)

    Even though I have great affection for The Prowler, it wasn't my first choice for today. I was going to go with Peeping Tom, but I forgot I loaned it because I want as many people as possible to see it. (Pardon the shameless little plug, but seriously... if you haven't seen Peeping Tom you need to fix that!)

    My second choice was My Bloody Valentine, but by the time I got home from work both versions were already claimed and. That naturally lead me to The Prowler, because I think it and MBV are very similar films (really really very very). I've got to try to keep this short so I'll just mention two things I think The Prowler did better than MBV. The first is atmosphere. I find The Prowler to be the creepier and more tense of the two. Unfortunately, this is at the expense of pace. The second is weight. The Prowler feels heavier to me. I think this is largely due to the brutality of the kills and Tom Savini's effects. For it's day this one was pretty f'ing gory. Now that I type and think this out a bit I actually think I prefer The Prowler to MBV, but I think MBV is the better of the two... They're both worth watching, especially in tandem. It's fun to compare and contrast them with friends.

    Oh, one more thing even though this went a little long ;The Prowler has a way better ending.

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  18. Malevolence

    A mother and daughter are held hostage by bank robbers at an abandoned farmhouse. Or is it abandoned? Both the acting and screenplay are terrible. There is no suspense in this movie. The movie doesn’t know how to end either. It just keeps going and going until a lame attempt at a jump scare. There is one good idea in this movie. Near the end of the movie, we are told the origins of the killer. I wish I could have seen that movie instead.

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    1. I just watched this a few weeks ago and had pretty much the same reaction. I still feel like I should watch the sequel (Bereavement), but it seems like it would be work.

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    2. Patrick, It takes no work to watch Daddario, 'nuff said.

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  19. Return to Horror High (1987)

    I was completely on board with this for about 20 minutes. It was good, campy fun. And then it quickly deteriorated, unsure of what kind of movie it was attempting to be. Is this a supernatural slasher? A masked menace? I still have no idea. There's also a good portion of the middle that's so incredibly boring.

    And then we get to the last half hour, where I repeatedly said, out loud to myself, what the hell is going on?

    Seriously, what?

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  20. The New York Ripper (1982, dir. Lucio Fulci) I still don't totally get Lucio Fulci, but this was my favorite of his movies that I've seen. That's a horrible thought, because this is a sleazy, gory, misogynistic, ugly movie about a murderer killing women in New York. This is one of the most exploitative, grindhousey movies I've ever seen; if I weren't caught up in the spirit of the month, I might have hated it. Instead, I found it fascinating and watchable, even if I hate myself for finding it so. Also, the killer talks like a duck. Like, seriously does a Donald Duck impression. The whole movie. It never stops being funny.

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    1. Oh man this is my pick for Serialkillersploitation. Sounds like I won't be bored. I have only seen one other Fulci movie (Zombie), I know you don't love it but I think it's an A+ horror movie.

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  21. Bloody Birthday (1981)

    Three kids that are born on an eclipse go around town 10 years later killing people. I'm not spoiling anything here, they let you know who the killers are about 10 minutes or so in. I wasn't a big fan of the movie, however it was hilarious when these very small kids would be dragging adult bodies away trying to dispose of them.

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  22. Alice in Murderland (2010). Exactly what I needed tonight, an almost completely incompetent slasher film at an Alice In Wonderland themed 21st birthday party. Cast obviously from the local community college and filmed there as well, this is just the kind of two-bit wanna be camp fest that I wanted. Visible crew members, laughable slasher effects, characters who don't get introduced before they're killed; this movie has it all.

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  23. Halloween (2007) aka The Dead Horse

    I've been meaning to come back to this movie for a while. I first watched it back when it hit the second run theaters and haven't come back to it. My opinion has done the... uh... opposite of improve. Too keep it short the movies spends about 45 minutes making Halloween not scary and then remakes Halloween. On this viewing I also realized just how big my problem with Zombie as a filmmaker is. Granted I've yet to re-visit his other two movies since I saw them in theaters, but re-watching this one reminded of how much I disliked them. Dude just really rubs me the wrong way. Eh, Thunder Kiss '65 is still awesome...

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  24. All the Boys Love Mandy Lane (2006)

    Steve K was spot-on with this movie earlier today. What a disappointment.

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  25. Sleepaway Camp (1983) - or as I call it "holy shit bonkers what did I just watch??"

    If I hadn't have stumbled upon the fine fthismovie website and its resident F Heads I may never have heard of, or watched this little cinematic lady boner. (woops, Spoiler alert). I don't know whether to be grateful for this, or wash my eyes out with corn water....I'm thinking the former.

    The less I say about this movie the better, not because there's nothing to say...but because the Fthismovie guys say it all and more in their commentary.

    If you haven't seen it, then watch it, then watch it again with the commentary. Then when you're done, go outside, take in some fresh air and be glad you aren't as bat shit crazy as Robert Hiltzik.

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    1. I'm so happy Sleepaway Camp exists. I don't watch it a ton, but just thinking about it always makes me smile.

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  26. Maniac (1980)

    Still one of the most repugnant films ever made… and I mean that as a compliment. Playing like the slasher equivalent of Taxi Driver, I almost get queasy just looking at the film print.

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    1. This is what I'm going to watch for Serial Killer day. I have still never seen it (though I did see the remake).

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  27. The Horror Show (1989)

    I don't think I didn't not dislike this movie? Nah, I didn't like it - it started out okay and I was impressed with the genre-star-studded cast, but after a great execution scene early on it mostly drags with little in the way of any real scares.

    Thank God I EXPLOITED a Cineplex Store website error and got this Scream Factory blu-ray for only $3 because it means I only overpaid $3 for this stinker (SF's first and only miss?). Pass on it unless you're a Lance Henriksen/Brion James/Sean S. Cunningham completist.

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    1. I am a Scream Factory completist, which means at some point I will have to buy it. If you find another $3 copy, let me know. I don't remember loving the movie.

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  28. Maniac (2012)

    Genuinely surprised I hadn't yet seen this in Patrick's basement.

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