Archive for Fangoria Movie Friday

AWESOME-tober-fest 2016: Jason X (2001) review

Posted in Friday the 13th, Genres, Halloween, holiday, horror, Jason Vorhees, movies, nostalgia with tags , , , , , , , , on October 28, 2016 by Paxton

Awesometoberfest banner

Yesterday for my “greatest hits of AWESOME-tober-fest” week, I looked at the novelization for the movie Jason X, of which I am a fan.  I thought maybe for Fangoria Movie Friday I should revisit the movie itself and see if I do still, in fact, enjoy it.  A 15 years later retrospective on a very maligned movie.

In the late 90s, when Freddy vs Jason was still in “development hell”, Friday the 13th creator Sean Cunningham wanted to make another Jason movie to continue fostering interest in the character. Writer Todd Farmer pitched “Jason in space” and develpment began on what would become the 10th Friday the 13th movie, Jason X.

Jason X poster

The movie starts off in 2010. Jason has been captured by the government and kept in the Crystal Lake Research Facility. They have been testing his ability to regenerate tissue and stay alive. After several failed attempts to kill him it is decided to put him in cryo stasis, but certain other shadowy government departments want him for further study so they prep him for transfer to another facility. However, Jason escapes and kills nearly everyone. One of the researchers, Rowan, traps him in the cryo chamber, but Jason pierces the chamber with his machete and both Jason and Rowan are trapped in cryo sleep as the facility goes into lockdown mode.

vlcsnap-00309

Over 445 years later, a scientific team stumbles upon the two and transports them to their ship. The crew revive Rowan from cryo sleep with nanotechnology and just as she is about to warn them about Jason he revives and starts killing all of the scientists. Rowan and the few survivors must figure out a way to stop Jason and get off the ship before it is destroyed.

That’s the elevator pitch, there’s a little bit more to it. But not much.  Getting this out of the way, the movie is ultra low budget.  Especially for being in space.  The actors are mostly unknowns but the lead girl, Rowan, was on Andromeda, as was one other cast member.  The cast is as good as any other standard Friday the 13th.  The kills are pretty good.  One of the more infamous being the “liquid nitrogen head smash”.

vlcsnap-00310 vlcsnap-00311

For the characters, Rowan is pretty good as the female lead. The other “lead” if you want to call her that is an android a la Data from Star Trek: TNG named KM-14. You also get the typical smattering of other character types; “the tough military sergeant”, “the computer dork” and “the outspoken one with loose morals”. They work as well as any of the other F13 movies. Certainly no worse than Jason Takes Manhattan or New Beginning.  But saying “they work as well” and “they are good and interesting characters” are two different things.  They do what they need to do but they aren’t great.

vlcsnap-00308

As far as the story goes, I like the idea of the government wanting to test the captured Jason’s supernatural healing abilities. He has this ability to regenerate after nearly 100% damage. Of course the government is going to want to study him.  I also like the idea of trapping people on a spaceship with a hunting Jason. You can tell the premise of this movie was “borrowed” from Alien. As a plot device, for me, it works.  What also works for me is the idea of Uber Jason.  Towards the end of the movie, the android character gets “an upload”, becomes Rambo and “kills” Jason by shooting off his leg, part of his rib cage and part of his head.  And despite the fact that Jason hasn’t died from some seemingly fatal wound at least 5 times before this, everyone assumes he’s dead.  Then the damaged medical station thinks Jason needs to be fixed so it takes over and rebuilds Jason.  As a cyborg.

vlcsnap-00318 vlcsnap-00324

And so is born the best thing in this movie, Uber Jason.  We get precious little time with Uber Jason.  He’s awesome and should have been onscreen more than 20 minutes.  He’s relentless and kills gloriously.  The movie really picks up and seems more fun once Uber Jason is on the scene.  Here’s a nice gallery of Uber Jason pics.

vlcsnap-00321 vlcsnap-00322

vlcsnap-00325 vlcsnap-00326

At one point they trap Uber Jason in a simulated 1980 Camp Crystal Lake environment.  He gets to kill two simulated co-eds by smacking their sleeping bags against a tree.  It’s a pretty great homage to past movies (the sleeping bag stunt was done back in Part VII).

vlcsnap-00327

So, is this a great movie? No, not really. But it’s fun. It has fun with the concept of Jason and the idea to move him into outer space and turn him into a futuristic cyborg Jason was a clever idea. Did everything 100% work? No, of course not. The budget is uber cheap and you get what you pay for with the actors. But I had fun with what the filmmakers were trying to do and I still say I enjoy this movie.


2012 banner
Also, check out the blog Countdown to Halloween for more Halloween-y, bloggy AWESOMEness.

Advertisements

AWESOME-tober-fest 2015: Destroyer (1988) movie review

Posted in Genres, Halloween, holiday, horror, movies, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 30, 2015 by Paxton

Awesometoberfest banner

This is it!  The final day of the final week of AWESOME-tober-fest 2015. It’s been a blast. I really hope you guys have had as much fun as I’ve had. I’m sad to see the Halloween season come to a close. But, all good things, am I right? Anyway, without further ado, here is today’s final AWESOME-tober-fest article and it’s the last of this week’s look back at all of my previous years’ AWESOME-tober-fest subjects.

Last year, my theme was Bloody Best of Fangoria.  I went through the vast history of the magazine, showed you articles and pictures and each Friday I reviewed a B-horror movie that appeared in the pages of the magazine.  Those reviews were called Fangoria Movie Fridays.  The last FMF was the awesome Cheerleader Camp starring Lucinda Dickey.  But it was almost a different movie.  As a matter of fact, it was so almost a different movie that I had watched and mostly drafted a completely different movie review but I changed my mind at the last second.  I think it’s time to bring that movie back and give it its due.  That movie was the flick Destroyer from 1988.  It starred Lyle Alzado, Debra Foreman and Anthony Perkins.

Here’s the ad they used to promote the VHS release.  I remember seeing it in an issue of Fangoria.

Destroyer poster

Lyle looks like he’s holding his head weird.  Or is his head just Photoshopped into the poster?  I can’t tell.

Here’s the actual poster for the movie.

Destroyer_FilmPoster

 

Yeah, this is actually a bit more bonkers and awesome.  Did you notice that they added a LASER SCOPE to the jackhammer?  Why the f**k does he need a laser scope on the jackhammer?!  Crazy.  And weird.  And awesome.

Anyway, this movie poster obviously spoke to me.  Lyle Alzado as a “half dead” serial killer?  Anthony Perkins as a horror movie director? Yes, please.

So, first, is this movie any good.  Ehhh, it’s okay.  It’s not bad for a late 80s slasher flick with a ton of cult pop culture familiar faces in it.  What’s it about, well, Alzado plays a serial killer who is on Death Row.  He is about to be executed when a power surge while he’s in the electric chair makes him “half dead”.  Essentially it makes him a savage, nearly indestructible killing machine.  The jail is abandoned and Lyle is left to roam the empty jail.  Flash forward two years or so and a horror film crew arrives to film their movie in the infamous jail.  They, of course, stir up Lyle who starts killing off members of the crew.  How do you stop an unkillable monster?  I. Don’t. Know.

That’s the basic premise.  Did I mention this movie had familiar faces?  Yep, let’s quickly look at the cast. You’ve already seen sweaty Lyle Alzado up there on the poster as the “lead”. Lyle is known mainly for football but he also appeared in this movie, Ernest Goes to Camp, Zapped…Again! (yes, the sequel to Zapped!) and the sadly short lived wrestling sitcom Learning the Ropes.

The next most notable face would be the aforementioned Anthony Perkins, best known as Norman Bates in the Psycho movies.  Anthony is playing the director of the horror movie-within-the-movie, Death House Dolls.  Honestly, Perkins is pretty much the best thing in the movie.  He’s very entertaining and I loved every scene he’s in.

destroyer05

Here’s a familiar face, Clayton Rohner.

destroyer01

I did not expect him to pop up in this movie. This guy is an 80s staple with lead rolls in Just One of the Guys, I, Madman and another little horror film I love called April Fool’s Day.  If you haven’t seen April Fool’s Day, watch it.  It’s pretty great.  But also starring in April Fool’s Day was an actress named Deborah Foreman.  And in a nice little reunion, Deborah is in this movie as well.

destroyer04

Deborah is adorable.  You’ve seen her in a ton of 80s flicks like Valley Girl, Real Genius, Hot Pursuit and My Chauffeur.  Unfortunately she goes with “Hilary Clinton” hair in this movie which is rather…unfortunate.

I do like both of these guys, so it’s nice to have them here.  Clayton comes off a little better because he’s written to be a funny, irreverant writer so he has some funny lines.

So, how’s Lyle?  He’s okay.  I mentioned his character is described as “half dead”, which I assume means he has “crazy eyes”.  Because that’s what he does at every opportunity.  Gives us his “crazy eyes”.

destroyer02 destroyer03

He does seem to have a lot of fun with that jackhammer, though.

destroyer06 destroyer07

Easy, Lyle, you can go blind handling that jackhammer so much.  Take a break, buddy.

If you like cheesy 80s “horror” with a dash of comedy, I think you’ll like this.


2015 banner
Also, check out the blog Countdown to Halloween for more Halloween-y, bloggy AWESOMEness.

AWESOME-tober-fest 2014: Cheerleader Camp (1988) movie review

Posted in Genres, Halloween, holiday, horror, movies, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 31, 2014 by Paxton

Awesometoberfest banner

Happy Halloween, everyone!

Okay, this is it. The final Fangoria Movie Friday Review and the final post for this year’s AWESOME-tober-fest.  Like I mentioned yesterday, I had serious issues deciding what movie to review today.  There were so many awesome 80s slasher movies to choose from.  But one movie stood out just a little from the rest.  Sort of “the little movie that could”.  So, I went with my gut (and other parts a little further south of my gut) and chose Cheerleader Camp from 1988 starring a metric ton of 80s cult movie stars.

Cheerleader Camp poster

This poster is balls-out amazing. I love it. FYI, the alternate title for this movie was Bloody Pom Poms. And I’m not even kidding.

bloody pom poms

So you see why I picked this movie. BECAUSE IT LOOKS F**KING AWESOME.  Plus, there’s like five hot, known 80s actresses all over this movie.  The premise consists of a cheerleading competition that takes place at some remote “camp” (read: isolated cabin) in the middle of the woods.  Suddenly cheerleader campers start showing up dead and everyone wonders just who is the killer.  We get several red herrings that are almost immediately proved to be untrue.  The eventual culprit was a surprise to me up until a few minutes before the big reveal.  But I wasn’t really sitting there trying to figure it out.  We get lots of angsty female teen melodrama and pent up horny boys drama like in a typical Porky’s but less skin.  The ensemble 80s female cast is pretty epic and you get several bikini/underwear scenes with all of them.  This is a fun watch.  I’d watch it again if only for the great visuals and not for the amusing story or dialogue.  All in all, a great 80s sexy horror romp.

Here are some of the visuals because they are GREAT.

cc_00
Awesome, colorful title card.

cc_01
There’s going to be LOTS of pictures of the chicks in this movie because the vast majority of them are really hot and many of them are awesome 80s cult stars. You will probably recognize the chick in the middle here. That’s Lucinda Dickey. One of my personal favorite 80s actresses most famous for both Breakin’ and Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo but she also awesomely starred in the phenomenal Ninja III: The Domination.  The blonde on the left is Lorie Griffin who is most famous for playing, Pamela, Scott Howard’s crush in Teen Wolf.  On the right is Betsy Russell.  This brunette hottie is probably most known for her star turn as Angel in the movie Avenging Angel as well as the 80s sex comedies Tomboy and Private School and most recently playing Jill in the last five Saw movies.  There are two more ladies in the back I’ll get to next in a better screenshot.

cc_03
In the middle of this pic is Lorie Griffin again.  She plays a dumb blonde in this movie which is weird compared to her sultry turn as Pamela in Teen Wolf.  On the left is Rebecca Ferratti.  She was Playboy’s Playmate of the Month in June 1986.  She had a small roles in Three Amigos and Beverly Hills Cop II but I know her most from her small but memorable appearance at the very beginning of Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.  And, on the right, we have Teri Weigel.  Teri has been in a TON of movie and TV appearances such as Predator 2, Embrace of the Vampire, Return of the Killer Tomatoes and Married With Children.  However, she is also most recently known for being a porn star.  And these are the five ladies that awesomely headline this movie.  But, wait, there’s more!

Continue reading

AWESOME-tober-fest 2014: Zombie Nightmare (1987) movie review

Posted in Genres, Halloween, holiday, horror, movies, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2014 by Paxton

Awesometoberfest banner

Yesterday you saw the ad for the flick, Zombie Nightmare from 1987.  It starred Adam West, Tia Carrere and Jon Mikl-Thor.  I’ve loved the look of that ad since I first saw it in Fangoria so I decided that it was going to be this week’s Fangoria Movie Friday review.

Zombie Nightmare poster

The only thing I’ve ever seen on this movie was yesterday’s home video ad. I remember the image vividly from when I bought the issue. So, since I’m filling in holes in my cult horror movie watching this month, I decided to track down this movie and give it a watch.

The premise is simple enough.  A guy is run over by a bunch of teens in a sports car and killed.  He is resurrected as a mindless zombie by a voodoo priestess in order to get revenge on all the teens that were in the car.  Bloodshed ensues.

It stars Adam West and Tia Carrere, so this should be 100% a winner.  And I mean that in the most B-movie awesome way.  Now that I’ve watched it, what did I think?  In a nutshell it’s a bit disappointing.  There’s definitely some high moments here and there.  The aesthetic is early Troma, as it seems with all the movies I’ve picked this month.  Not a whole lot of gore, surprisingly, but a metric ton of cheese.  Production values are on par with something like Street Trash but that movie was endlessly more fascinating than this one.  Do I recommend?  Hmmm, not really.  I don’t plan on watching it again, even though it amused me a bit during my viewing.  Another movie this reminded me of was Hard Rock Zombies which I reviewed last year for AWESOME-tober-fest 2013.

Let’s look at some of the more choice moments of this movie.

zn00
zn01 zn02
And the movie begins, and we see that right away, this movie has the potential to be several different kinds of awesome. Adam West in a schlocky zombie movie? Yes, please? Tia Carrere?! Yes! And maybe she’ll get topless for her kill scene.  Those are the thoughts running through my head when I see the title cards.

zn03
Wait…slick back hair, tight t-shirt, cigarettes rolled up in the sleeve.  Did I put on The Outsiders by mistake?  Is Leif Garret going to show up in a letter sweater?

zn04 zn05
Oh, I see. Those greasers are here to endanger that young lady. And the husky, sweat panted dude is going to do something about it.  And that something is participate in the most ridiculously choreographed fight scene I’ve seen since Miami Connection.  Yes, husky sweat pants actually does spin around with the guy on his shoulders.

Continue reading

AWESOME-tober-fest 2014: HP Lovecraft’s From Beyond (1986) review

Posted in Genres, Halloween, holiday, horror, movies, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2014 by Paxton

Awesometoberfest banner

Well, this week has been Stuart Gordon Week. All of this week’s content has been leading up to my Fangoria Movie Friday review of Stuart’s 1986 horror classic, From Beyond.  The movie, like the previous The Re-animator, was based on an HP Lovecraft short story.

From Beyond poster

You’ve seen this week how much Fangoria was in love with the idea of this movie.  I remember it all over the magazine back in the mid 80s.  For some reason, even though I love Re-animator, I had never watched this movie.  But now I have.  And it’s not bad.

The premise is rather interesting.  A machine called “The Resonator” stimulates your pineal gland to allow you to see other dimensions which causes creepy creatures to manifest all around you.  And the more you are exposed to the effects of “The Resonator” the more it changes you.  Dr Pretorius and his assistant, Dr Tillinghast, who created the machine, turn it on and see these weird creatures appear.  Suddenly an accident occurs where Pretorius is seemingly killed and his assistant locked up in an asylum for the murder (an asylum because he’s spouting gibberish about inter dimensional creatures killing the doctor).  A beautiful psychologist, Dr McMichaels, believes the assistant is innocent and convinces him to take her to “The Resonator” to investigate the crime scene and they are accompanied by the awesome Detective Bubba Brownlee.  And lots of horror and interdimensional craziness occurs.

This movie definitely has a “by the Creators of Re-animator” vibe.  Not just because of the two principles, but the whole feel of the movie is very Re-animator-ish.  Which, of course, I like from the beginning.  Also, with like only 2 or 3 set pieces and only four principle actors, this also has a very stripped down, minimalist feel.  Like we are watching this performance as a bizarre theater production.  It absolutely feels like something you’d go see in a dark theater WAY off Broadway.  And that works in the movie’s favor.

The actors are very good too.  Jeffrey Combs is a little less crazy in this but he’s every bit as manic and interesting as he was in The Re-animator.  Barbara Crampton is great as Dr McMichaels and I still have a huge crush on her.  She doesn’t have an iconic scene in this like she did with the severed head giving her…well…head…in The Re-animator, but we do get a great scene of her in a leather dominatrix outfit.  I was very surprised by Ken Foree as Detective Brownlee.  He was AWESOME even going so far as fighting inter-dimensional creatures in nothing but a red thong.  Seriously.  It’s awesome.  The final principle was Dr Pretorius played by Ted Sorel.  He was the least interesting to me, but he played it fine.  Nothing to complain about, but nothing really to praise either.

Is this as good as The Re-animator?  No, it’s not.  However, it’s a pretty fun little flick and I’d recommend giving it a shot especially if you loved The Re-animator.

I mentioned that this movie was based on a short story of the same name.  I hadn’t read the story either, but since it was only like eight pages I went ahead and read it after I watched the movie.  It’s essentially like a prologue to the movie.  The events in the story are mostly what happens in the beginning of the movie with the machine getting turned on, the creatures showing up and Dr Tillinghast (Pretorius in the movie) getting killed and his best friend/partner taking the rap for it.  It’s not bad, but short.

Let’s look at some of the more choice moments of this movie.

title card Jeffrey Combs
There’s the title card on the left and on the right, the opening shot of the movie which is a cozy image of one Jeffrey Combs, wrapped in a warm fuzzy sweater, biting down on a #2 pencil and drinking from a (vintage!) Coke can as he focuses all of his concentration on typing into that ancient computer that probably runs on a combination of steam and gasoline.

old computers old computer monitor
Here’s more old as the Bible computer machines.  It looks like something Doc Brown would have in his basement.  Check out the monitor colors on the right.  Green background with blue writing?  We honestly didn’t care about our retinas in the 80s, did we?

Barbara Crampton
Here’s the psychologist Dr McMichaels played by the lovely Barbara Crampton. Those giant 80s glasses are so f**king adorable.

Continue reading

AWESOME-tober-fest 2014: Street Trash (1987) review

Posted in Genres, Halloween, holiday, horror, movies, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 10, 2014 by Paxton

Awesometoberfest banner

I’ve talked a few times this week about an obscure little movie called Street Trash.  I described my fascination with the articles and pictures I’d seen in Fangoria magazine in the late 80s and the fact that I was never able to find a copy to watch nor was I ever able to find it on cable.  So, like I did with Rawhead Rex, I found a copy of this movie and I am now about to fill a giant hole in my 13 year old self’s soul by watching this movie.

For, as I mentioned the last few days, this week’s Fangoria Movie Friday review is Street Trash.

Street Trash poster

This movie started out as a film school project that received a bit of buzz in some grindhouse theaters in New York.  The director was offered seed money to make it into a very low budget feature length movie.  It’s gore and shock factor lead it to be a small cult hit in 1987.

As I said, I remember the Fangoria article about this movie fondly.  If for nothing else than the described toilet melting scene and the picture of the blond makeup artist with a (now vintage) Coke bottle filled with gore.

fan63_streettrash03b

Well, I have now finally watched the movie and I’ll talk about it…..right…..now.

This movie, at its heart, is a Troma film.  Not surprising since Toxic Avenger was released only 2 years prior.  All the hallmarks and tone are there, even if this wasn’t made by Troma proper you can tell it’s influenced by their style.  The movie is super gory.  And, honestly, the gore effects are actually pretty good considering the rest of the production is bare f**king bones.  The ubsurd, gory, dark humor is there throughout as are the surreal, dirty, grungy characters that populate the world.  To be fair, I’m not a huge Troma fan.  I really like the original Toxic Avenger but I haven’t really liked anything else they’ve released.  So, Troma-style isn’t necessarily a slam dunk for me.

This movie is just all so bizarre.  But in a weird way it works.  Essentially, the story begins when a sleazy liquor store owner finds a 60 year old case of Viper wine sealed up in his store room and decides to sell the bottles at $1 a pop to the dirty homeless guys that come in.  One bottle is sold and passed around and we see that the decades old wine will immediately disintegrate anyone who drinks it.  Lots of gruesome deaths happen on a fire escape and, awesomely, on a public toilet.  There’s even a scene in which a homeless guy has his penis cut off and tossed around “keep away” style as he runs around trying to retrieve it and put it on ice.  It’s gory and gross and just a wild ride.  And, like I said, bizarre.

There are a few other weird subplots going on like two brothers trying to cope with being homeless, a violent cop out to solve the mysterious melting murders and the brutal antics of a deranged Vietnam Vet named Bronson who rules the local junkyard.

I told you, the movie is bananas. But in a fun way.  I definitely had fun with it and I’d recommend it to anyone interested in these types of movies (you know who you are).

Here’s a look at some choice moments in this movie.

st_005 st_001
This is the sleazy liquor store owner finding the case of Viper in his storeroom. Looks like vintage Ron Jeremy, doesn’t it? That could very easily be a version of Spanish Fly and he’s going to use it to bang all the chicks.

st_003 st_004
The infamous toilet melting sequence. This looks a little weird in static images but I assure you it actually comes together in the movie. It’s gross and fun.  There’s another scene where a bum actually melts through the bars of a fire escape.  Very imaginative.

st_009
I mentioned this film is populated with Troma characters, here’s one of them. This is the guy that owns and/or runs the junkyard. He hates bums, despite the fact that the junkyard is full of them.  He’s a fat, disgusting slob and reminds me of the mayor character from The Toxic Avenger.

st_010 st_011
More Troma characters!  This is the crazy Vietnam Vet Bronson (left) who seems to control the junkyard and his disgusting, dirty bum whore (right).  She is seriously gross.  And Bronson treats her like sh*t throughout the movie.  He even hilariously belts her one right across the eyes.  It’s so Looney Tunes that I had to make an animated gif of it.  Check it out:

street_trash_hit
Hilarious.  For some reason the cops actually think this Bronson is a threat.  A threat to dirty bum whores, maybe.  But not much else.

st_007 st_013
On the left is a sign at the entrance of the junkyard which warns against bums.  That’s funny because the junkyard is FULL of bums.  As you can see from the pic on the right.

st_008
At the end of the movie, this homeless guy doesn’t just melt, he f**king EXPLODES in an awesome firestorm of wino gore.  If nothing else, the effects on this movie are seriously great.

So, that’s Street Trash.  I did mention earlier that this started out as a short for film school.  I was actually able to watch that original 14 minute short and the movie is a lot better.  The short, you can tell, was a rough draft of the feature length movie.  If you get a chance, give it a watch, otherwise, the movie is the way to go.

I’m so glad this turned out more like what I was expecting than the disappointing Rawhead Rex.  Maybe I’ll be pleasantly surprised by next week’s movie as well?


2012 banner
Also, check out the blog Countdown to Halloween for more Halloween-y, bloggy AWESOMEness.

AWESOME-tober-fest 2014: Review of Rawhead Rex (1986)

Posted in Fangoria, Genres, horror, monsters, movies, nostalgia, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , , on October 3, 2014 by Paxton

Awesometoberfest banner

On Wednesday I showed you the cover to Fangoria #61 with a cover story on the movie Rawhead Rex. And I told you I’ve been fascinated with that movie since 8th grade. Yesterday I showed you the guts of that Rawhead Rex feature story (pun intended).  Well, for my inaugral Fangoria Movie Friday I finally watched Rawhead Rex and now it’s time to see if it stands up to what I thought it was going to be.

As I’ve mentioned, Rawhead Rex was written by Clive Barker and released in 1986.  Here’s the terrible and confusing poster for the movie.

Rawhead Rex

What the hell is going on with that poster?  Needless to say, that didn’t clear up anything for me about the nature of this movie before watching it.  Horrible, horrible poster.

As background, I enjoy some of Clive Barker’s early stuff, but I’m not really a devotee.  So his name alone on this movie isn’t really doing anything for me.  The movie will have to stand on its own.  Unfortunately, bottom line, it’s not very good. Very low production value. Very low kitsch value. Not a lot to love. Sort of straight forward slasher monster movie. No subversiveness. Really just a by-the-numbers job. Very disappointing.

The story is about an ancient pagan fertility god, Rawhead Rex, who is awakened in a small town and starts going on a killing spree. That’s basically it. And I’m seriously giving more information than the movie gives you.  There’s long stretches of no killing and long stretches of no boobs or nudity. So, as an 80s monster/slasher flick, this really kinda blows.

You want to know how bad this movie is?  They actually put the below sentence in the plot synopsis on Wikipedia:

“On the road, Howard’s daughter needs to go to the bathroom, so Howard pulls over and lets her go by a tree.”

Someone wrote that.  Specifically to be published online.  For the movie’s plot description.  Seriously.  However, they had to put it in there because that scene is a crucial part of the movie.  THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT.

While I can’t really recommend it, let’s look at a few things worth mentioning.

RR_000 RR_001
Here’s the title card and a face shot of Rawhead Rex after he’s awoken from his thousand year slumber. The makeup/costume work on Rex is not good. You can’t tell by this small static picture on my blog, but it’s pretty bad.  His design would be cool in a comic book, maybe, but on the screen, it’s less than stellar. And his big reveal during the awakening, which you see in the poster above, looks like complete dogsh*t.

RR_004
This is a stained glass window found in a church discovered early on by the main character played by David Dukes. At first glance he doesn’t find it odd that a church would have a giant red monster with huge fangs and bones and skulls all around him captured in a stained glass mural.  I mean, I’d be like “HOLY SH*T! WHAT THE F**K IS THAT AND WHY IS IT ON YOUR WINDOW?!”

RR_002
A clear Easter Egg for fans of Angus Scrimm and the Phantasm movies.  The first of which was released in 1979.

Continue reading