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The Blob (Chuck Russell 1988)
Trash rating

Chuck Russell made his directorial debut with A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987) the most imaginative, and best of the series. He's made a total of six films in all, most successfully The Mask (1994) starring Jim Carey, but also the Schwarzenegger vehicle Eraser (1996), and The Scorpion King (2002) starring 'The Rock'. He followed up his Krueger installment with The Blob, a remake of the 1958 cult (but hardly classic) film of the same title directed by Irvin S. Yeaworth Jr. A film that besides its hokey premise, was only notable for the fact that it was Steve McQueen's first starring role. Russell wrote the screenplay for his remake along with Frank Darabont who has since scripted The Shawshank Redemption (1994) and The Green Mile (1999) no less. The film loosley sticks to Theodore Simpson and Kay Linaker's original screenplay, all be it with added 1980's gusto and splatter.

The Blob begins with a tramp who on witnessing a meteorite landing in woodland, investigates the crater with his dog. Foolishly he decides to prod what's left of the rock with a stick, and before you know it, the slimey gunk has lept onto his hand. Enter Brian Flagg (Kevin Dillon) our motorbike riding antihero, who also saw the landing, and tries to help the old timer. When the stuff (which is growing) wont come off, he takes him to the hospital aided by love interest Meg (Shawnee Smith) and Paul (Donovan Leitch). Naturally the doctors prove useless, and soon the blob has quadrupled in size consuming everything in sight (including Paul). Off go Brian and Meg to warn the townsfolk who of course don't listen (Brian's none too popular with the local law enforcement) until the goo is the size of a house. Next thing you know, there's a bunch of sinister army scientists on the scene led by evil Dr. Meddows (Joe Senaca) complete with biohazard suits and machine guns. Far from being saviours, the military once again turn out to have their own morally dubious agenda. It's left to Brian and Meg to save the day before the blob eats everything in sight, a task aided by their discovery that it doesn't like the cold.



The Blob is bafflingly underrated stuff, that's been largely overlooked and sadly forgotten by many. Certainly better than the original film, Russell's remake has a great sense of fun, is well paced, and has some eye popping special effects. The b-movie cast is great too, with the likes of Art LaFleur as Mr. Penny, Candy Clark as Fran, and Jeffrey DeMunn as Sherriff Geller. Russell clearly knows what the audience wants from this type of fare, and provides it in spades. The film has some neat in jokes, not the least the sequence with a couple in a car stalked by a masked killer. Before you can scratch your head in puzzlement, the camera pans out revealing everyone in a cinema. Other highlights include the sink plunging sequence, a kid (anyone is fair game in this movie) devoured in the sewers, and said cinema audience who get the full horror treatment. Perhaps my only criticism would be the casting of Kevin Dillon (brother of Matt, best known for cracking Vietnamese heads in Oliver Stone's Platoon 1986) who's way too obnoxious, and not at all convincing as a hero. Overall though The Blob is a well made entertaining nod to 50's monster movies well worth rediscovering.







The Deadly Spawn aka Return of the Aliens: The Deadly Spawn (Douglas McKeown 1983)
Trash rating

The Deadly Spawn is a poverty row minor gore classic from one time director Douglas McKeown (who shot the film mostly at weekends on 16mm film for a budget of $20,000). He wrote the script along with his buddies John Dods and Ted A. Bohus, the former also acting as director of special effects. Dods has indeed been busy since the film, working in makeup and special effects on the likes of Ghostbusters II (1989), Alien: Resurrection (1997), and The X Files (1998). On its initial release The Deadly Spawn was retitled Return of the Aliens: The Deadly Spawn in order to cash in on rumors of a sequel to Alien. The film took over $300,000 on it's opening weekend, and has since built up a loyal cult following, putting profits to date in the millions.

After a meteorite crashes near a a small town (sounds familiar) a couple of inquisitive campers decide to investigate. This turns out to be a big mistake as the rock is home to a very hungry alien (that looks like a phalic version of Audry from The Little Shop of Horrors). After munching on the campers, the yucky alien takes shelter from a storm in the cellar of a nearby town house, and starts spawning babies (these look like large tadpoles with oversized teeth). Most of the rest of the film takes place in said cellar as unwitting family members become dinner for the critter. The family's son, an obnoxious horror obsessed kid in therapy (who is actually very entertaining) figures out that the beast is blind and hunts by sound. He subsequntly inlists the help of his older brother and two friends, who together formulate a clever plan to kill the thing.



The Deadly Spawn is a charming little splatter film, despite it's painfully low budget. The acting although amateur, is surprisingly natural, as characters go about their normal day to day activities. We're given scenes of them having breakfast, reading the paper and making chit chat, all of it coming across as surprisingly realistic. The imaginative creatures are the most impressive thing about the movie though, and we see plenty of them. The fact that they look so good on what was a shoestring budget is nothing short of miraculous. Shots of the tadpole babies swimming through the flooded basement look incredibly convincing, amazing to think they were puppets. The Deadly Spawn was one of the now infamous 'video nasties', and it's not hard to see why, as the film is filled with splatter. Characters by turns have their faces ripped off, limbs bitten off, and in one hilarious scene, an old folks (who fight back valiantly) home is gorily attacked by the baby aliens. Much of the film is reminiscent in atmosphere (particularly the basement scenes) to Sam Raimi's The Evil Dead (1981). Though The Deadly Spawn isn't as technically accomplished as Raimi's film, it most certainly appeals to the same audience. To sum up, this is a must see for fans of low budget monster splatter, indeed if you liked The Evil Dead then you will definitely like this. It's highly entertaining, often funny, cult, bloody fun all the way, and the final twist scene is a riot.




These sort of films are great, I'm always on the look out for this type of retro. People always remember Nightmare on Elm Street but don't appreciate it anymore, besides if were not for for these films where do they think that some of movie stars of today started? Example - Nighmare on Elm street = Johnny Depp!



Love the new 'trash' rating.

I can't remember if it was you who mentioned having reviews saved on HD? Are these some of them because if not you're turning out a lot of work! Kudos
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Love the new 'trash' rating.

I can't remember if it was you who mentioned having reviews saved on HD? Are these some of them because if not you're turning out a lot of work! Kudos
Yes that was me, but most of the reviews in this thread are new. I'm unemployed at the moment (start new job on Monday) so have a lot of free time on my hands. So far I've been knocking out two reviews a day, but this will no doubt change from next week.



Heh, thought that or something similar would be the alternate reason, i had similar abundance of time on my hands when i was unemployed. Not had anytime at all to finish my Top Movies List now.



Ouch!!!

whatever gave you that idea? You're not still smarting over my Doomsday review are you? Or was it my comments in my 100 Favourites thread? The only reason I didn't want to get drawn into debate there was because I was busy writing the thread (which took me a while) and didn't want to get sidetracked.
All right, fair enough. To honest though when you do write up a review and post it here, sometimes people are going to want to discuss things with you. And as yet you still haven't replied to what I said in your review of the film. You just think its trash and apparently that's all your going to say about it. So, am I smarting over your review? No. But like I said earlier I just didn't get the feeling you were really interested in chatting up these reviews. Especially the movies you don't like. And that's cool. In a thread like this one you're preaching to the choir most of the time anyway. I really love this genre as I know you do. So by all means please continue.
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We are both the source of the problem and the solution, yet we do not see ourselves in this light...



A PHD in Whiskey and Stonerology
My god, this has to be my favorite thread on MoFo at the moment. I am a massive fan of cult/trash/exploitation cinema, so this thread is like a godsend. Add to that fact that there are many titles on here that I have yet to see and I'm basically shivering with joy

Thanks, UF, keep it going!




Bronx Warriors aka 1990: The Bronx Warriors (Enzo G. Castellari 1982)
Trash rating

Spaghetti western fans in particular may already be aware of Enzo G. Castellari after seeing his cult flick Keoma (1976) starring Franco Nero. No stranger to the western Castellari also directed a string of crime thrillers and war movies back in the 60's and 70's, including Battle Command (1969), The Sting of the West (1972 starring Jack Palance), Street Law (1974) and most famously Inglorious Bastards (1978). In 1981 he ripped off Jaws with his film Great White, and in 1982 turned his attention to Mad Max 2 with his cheapo effort The New Barbarians. In short Castellari's b-movie output has been prolific, and often highly entertaining. Tarantino himself has long been an admirer making no secret of his desire to remake Inglorius Bastards, a project sadly yet to materialize.

Bronx Warriors saw Castellari continue his foray into the post apocalyptic genre, whilst nodding heavily in the direction of Walter Hill's The Warriors (1979). He co wrote the story with Elisa Briganti who'd already written the cult Lucio Fulci flick Zombi 2 (1979), and would go on to write further post nuke junk throughout the 80's. The story was in turn scripted by Dardando Sacchetti, whose impressive resume to date includes Cannibal Apocalypse (1980), The Gates of Hell (1980), The Beyond (1981), The House by the Cemetery (1981), Demons (1985) and Demons 2 (1986). All the b-movie Italian pedigree had been set in place to make Bronx Warriors a cheesy trash classic...

The story is set in a crime ridden future New York where the Bronx has become a desolate no go area patrolled by a biker gang known as 'The Riders'. The gang are led by Trash a likable lunkhead (who even cries in two memorable scenes), played by pretty boy Mark Gergory who looks like he's in a hair metal band. The police are too terrified to enter, much to the frustration of their owners, the evil 'Manhattan Corporation'. Further rage ensues when the company president's daughter Ann runs off. Naturally she (Stefania Girolami) hooks up with the riders and falls in love with Trash, forcing the Manhattan Corp to take drastic measures. They employ badass renegade cop Hammer (Vic Morrow) to go in, take out the gang and snatch her back. Hammer is one tough nasty dude who sets about turning the riders against each other aided by traitorous gang member Ice (Joshua Sinclair). Not stopping there, he then tries to spark off a turf war, framing Trash for the murder of a rival gang (The Tigers) member. Desperate to prevent a war Trash visits Tigers leader The Ogre (Fred Williamson) to form a truce, a journey that takes him through rival turf, and that's not the half of it...



Bronx Warriors suffers from a slow build up of twenty minutes up as Castellari sets the scene, but it's to his credit that he makes it so emminently watchable. Naturally the acting is appalling, and as a result hilarious, but what with lines like 'shut up or I'll knock ya block off!' being the main staple, you can't help but chuckle. The film is full of colorful characters like The Ogre (Italian regular Fred Williamson best known for From Dusk Till Dawn 1996) and Golan (fellow Italian favourite George Eastman) leader of the ridiculous rollerskating 'Zombies' gang. We also get Betty Dessy as Witch, a caped chick with a whip and razor fingers, plus Hot Dog (Christopher Connelly) a truck driving cripple out to make a buck. Best though, is the late Vic Morrow (a great b-movie character actor) as Hammer, who's so tough he could crack rocks with his teeth. Seriously, he steals this movie with ease, becoming an in joke between myself and friends. When life throws up a tough situation, well, 'we'll just have to put Hammer on it' (said in that gravelly video trailer voice). The fight scenes are equally colorful and amusing, characters all seem to come from the William Shatner school of martial arts, utilizing a dazzling array of four moves each. Marvel as they block with a stick, hit back with the stick, punch, and if you're lucky, kung fu kick. Of course this is not a good movie by any stretch of the imagination, but Castellari knows what he's doing keeping it highly entertaining and sometimes visually impressive. To sum up Bronx Warriors is a fun companion piece to The Warriors, watch Hill's film first, then slap this in and revel in it's endearing crapness. Followed by a sequel...




Bronx Warriors 2 aka Escape From the Bronx (Enzo G. Castellari 1983)
Trash rating
Never one to hang around, Castellari quickly churned out a sequel to his cheese fest Bronx Warriors the following year. This time he drafted in long time collaborator Tito Carpi to write the screenplay (probably in half an hour) whom he'd worked with on the likes of Battle Command (1969), The Sting of the West (1972) and The New Barbarians (1982). A veteran of spaghetti b-westerns Carpi also co wrote Ruggero Deodato's The Last Cannibal World (1977), and his fun actioner The Atlantis Interceptors (1983). Bronx Warriors 2 would prove to be even more slapdash than the original, but that didn't stop both movies becoming huge hits on home video.

Set ten years after the events of Bronx Warriors, we rejoin Trash (Mark Gregory who still looks like a Motley Crue roadie) this time fighting the evil 'TC Corporation' who plan to demolish the Bronx in order to redevelop the entire area. They tell the media that housing in Mexico will be provided for the residents, but in reality send in silver suited 'Disinfectors' headed by Floyd Wrangler (Henry Silva) who burn alive anyone refusing to leave. When Trash's parents are killed in their home all hell breaks loose as he attempts to resemble his old gang (most of whom were killed in the original film). He's joined by Toblerone (Antonio Sabato), demolition expert Strike (Giancarlo Prete), his son junior (Alessandro Prete) and crusading reporter Moon Grey (Valeria D'Obici). Together they kidnap TC Corp president Clark (Ennio Girolami) not realizing that vice president Hoffman (Paolo Malco) wants him dead anyway...



Bronx Warriors 2 is grimmer, nastier and ultimately dumber than the original. The likes of Morrow and Williamson are missed in a film that Castellari clearly threw together quickly to cash in on his initial hit. The presence of Silva is welcome, but he's given little to do as most of his scenes involve him talking on the phone or merely ordering his minions around. The rest of the cast are all pretty forgettable, as the acting once again takes a backseat. Indeed Bronx Warriors 2 lacks the charm of the original, but Castellari more than makes up for it with non stop action. Gregory as Trash is much more convincing this time round, and really looks mean as he offs countless bad guys. Infact the second half of the film is just that, silver suited 'disinfectors' being shot, bashed with crash helmets, and blown up in a sequence to rival the length (not quality) of John Woo's Hard Boiled (1992). Besides said film and Stallone's latest Rambo offering, I don't think I've ever seen a higher body count in a movie. Make no mistake though, the action here is grade D stuff, we often see the same shot of bad guys biting the dust, as all of them look alike, and well, Enzo was in a hurry. Overall Bronx Warriors 2 is a passable, badly dubbed, violent follow up, I enjoyed it, but would only recommend the film to fans of the original with low expectations. The kitsch Italo soundtrack by Francesco De Massi is a highlight. [left]

* The Bronx Warriors films were known as The Riffs 1&2 in Germany.



A PHD in Whiskey and Stonerology
Great review, as always.

I'm currently in the process of trying to find a lot of the films listed in here, with absolutely zero success. Of course, I can easily find them available to buy, but I don't want to buy anything until I know I like it (even though I'm pretty damn certain that I'll love the ones I've been looking for). I've looked through my local (A.K.A. New England/Northeast) library network, and all over the internet (not searching for downloads, just online players to watch them on [although none of the usual oddball download links have shown up either]).

So basically I was wondering whether anyone had any suggestions as to where to find a lot of these, especially you Used.



Great review, as always.

I'm currently in the process of trying to find a lot of the films listed in here, with absolutely zero success. Of course, I can easily find them available to buy, but I don't want to buy anything until I know I like it (even though I'm pretty damn certain that I'll love the ones I've been looking for). I've looked through my local (A.K.A. New England/Northeast) library network, and all over the internet (not searching for downloads, just online players to watch them on [although none of the usual oddball download links have shown up either]).

So basically I was wondering whether anyone had any suggestions as to where to find a lot of these, especially you Used.
Hi there,

if you're not wanting to buy them outright (all of them are on ebay) then checking Youtube is worth a try (search with film title and 'part 1' after it, someone may have posted the whole movie). You could also try and find out if there are any film fairs/conventions in your area, or just check thrift shops, boot sales and flea markets for cheap videos and dvds. Sadly many of these titles are hard to get hold of, as some of them are deleted and hence rare, you certainly wont find them in hmv. Other than that I can't really help, sorry,

UF.



A PHD in Whiskey and Stonerology
No problem man, and yes I've already checked YouTube several times, in the format you've suggested and in several others. I suppose I may have to buy them.



A. And as yet you still haven't replied to what I said in your review of the film. You just think its trash and apparently that's all your going to say about it. So, am I smarting over your review? No. But like I said earlier I just didn't get the feeling you were really interested in chatting up these reviews. Especially the movies you don't like. And that's cool. In a thread like this one you're preaching to the choir most of the time anyway. I really love this genre as I know you do. So by all means please continue.
Re Doomsday : -

Well this is perhaps a cultural thing as the film is British and you are American (Americans seem to like it more than the Brits). The general consensus in Britain is that the film is crap, a second rate rip off of better films, and major disapointment from Marshall.

To me the film is disjointed, has a bullsh*t third act involving medevel knights, and a thoroughly (with the exception of Hoskins) unlikable cast. Marshall doesn't just homage cult movies he rips them off, especially John Carpenter's map of New York sequence (here Scotland). The action scenes are poorly shot, with an annoying lack of wide shots letting you see what's happening. The soundtrack is intrusive thus detracting from the film, and his choice of 1980's pop songs is embarrasingly inapropiate. I love cheesy trash and Italian rips for sure, but Doomsday isn't cheap, just embarrassing, and downright shameful that such a promising director wasted millions on self indulgent twaddle.



No problem man, and yes I've already checked YouTube several times, in the format you've suggested and in several others. I suppose I may have to buy them.
Hi again,

I've heard that Netflix is very good for renting movies, Sedai rented 2019 After the Fall of New York (my favourite Italian post nuke flick) from there. It might be worth you getting an account as they may have some of the films I've reviewed here. Alternatively if you live in the UK and have a Cash Generator outlet nearby, check there too. They often have loads of pawned dvds going for two pounds each, including special editions, and foreign films. I've bought lots of great stuff in that shop. Good luck.



A PHD in Whiskey and Stonerology
Argh! I had Netflix up until a couple of months ago, before I started on this cult binge. Now I regret canceling, though I suppose it won't be any trouble to start up again

As to the Cash Generator point... no go, as I'm in the U.S.






Creature aka The Titan Find(William Malone 1985)
Trash rating

William Malone is another director with most of his fingers in the science fiction/horror pie. A lot of his work has been in television directing episodes for series such as Freddy's Nightmares, Tales from the Crypt, and Masters of Horror. Though in 1999 he gave us the passable House on Haunted Hill remake, and in 2002 further plumbed the depths with his abysmal FeardotCom. Things started for Malone back in 1981 when he enjoyed minor success with his drive in hit Scared to Death, another bargain basement Alien clone featuring a monster in the L.A. sewers. The film was buoyed by a likable cast, and a good looking monster that Malone designed himself (it's actually not that bad). Scared to Death even spawned a sequel of sorts, 1990's Syngenor (Malone recieved a special effects credit) which borrowed the monster's name and design.

Creature
was Malone's second film, a story he co wrote with one time writer Alan Reed. It's set in deep space and there's a monster on the prowl, I can't think where they got the idea for this one...

The film begins with two astronauts (one of whom is called Ted!!!?) on a Titan mining expedition who discover the remains of an intergalactic zoo. Ted's buddy decides he wants a photo of him sitting on a pod housing an alien in suspended animation (cue lots of screaming and jam on the lense). Of course, all this is setting up the inevitable mission to Titan to find out what happened to Ted and his pal (who clearly never saw a monster flick in his life). We join said mission, a group of astronauts who work for an American conglomerate called NIT. On reaching Titan they discover a rival German company called Rhicter has beaten them to it, and foolishly rush the landing scuppering their ship. Naturally our heroes visit the Rhicter ship looking for help, but instead encounter Ted's toothy alien friend who's eaten everyone and still feels hungry. After beating a hasty retreat, they then bump into Hofner (Klaus Kinski) the sole survivor of the German mission who likes groping security officer Bryce (Diane Salinger). He casually tells them, 'this creature is sly', whilst standing around eating and looking cheeky. The alien then proceeds to pick them off one by one, attaching mind controlling parasites to the dead turning them into devious zombies.



Besides the obvious hammy acting, cheap monster suit and overlong script, Creature also suffers from dim interior lighting that often makes it hard to see what's happening. It's a real shame because the exterior sets are fantastically atmospheric with eerie mist and blue gel lighting. Once the action moves inside however, it becomes clear that Malone was trying to hide the films meager budgetary constraints. Plus the plot is nothing more than generic garbage that moves way too slowly borrowing everything from Mario Bava's Planet of the Vampires (1965) to Howard Hawks's The Thing from Another World (1951). There's the obligatory nudity (a bare breasted zombie seduction) and token gore (face ripping and an exploding head) but for the most part characters just run back and forth between ships. Kinski livens things up (his introduction is brilliant) standing around munching sandwiches in supposedly tense scenes, but his appearance is way too brief leaving you wishing he had a starring role. The only other character of any interest is Bryce, who likes guns and wears a shiny black retro outfit. Sadly she mysteriously disappears halfway through, only to reappear in the films climactic scene announcing that she got lost (duh).

After having wanted to see this film for years my enthusiasm on viewing was sadly met with disappointment. It's not totally irredeemable, the space suits look good, plus you get to see Kinski acting randy and turned into a zombie. In the end though, the film is just too murky and uneventful for me to call it entertaining. Worth a look for Kinski completists and hardcore fans of space trash, but that's about it.




Man, that beast or alien or whatever it was supposed to be was just so bad wasn't it? I don't remember what rating I gave it when I went through a whole mess of these sci-fi flicks awhile back but I would definitely agree with your "trash" rating.