Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Assault on VA_33

 Howdy all! Freelance work is coming in bursts so to speak and I have been neglecting the Readers of Rotten and I apologize. Today's film gets a lot of negativity due to be low budget and a "knock off of Die Hard". Look, I can direct you to close to 25 films using this particular formula, coupled with the fact is the talent that went into our movie of the day did a bang up job. I have one nitpick about the flick but we will get to that later. This is Assault of VA_33. 

 

C'mon out to the VA, do some tests, have some laughs.


 

 

 

 

 

Jason Hill (Sean Patrick Flanery of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, Suicide Kings, Best Men, Simply Irrestistible, The Boondock Saints, The Strip, Dead Lawyers, Demon Hunter, The Insatiable, Savage Planet and The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day) is a highly decorated vet suffering from PTSD (Post Tramuatic Stress Disorder) is meeting his sessions, dealing with the stress and the freaking out, trying to be a civilian for the sake of his little girl Sara (Sarah Elizabeth Jensen of Homicide City, Ministry of Evil: The Twisted Cult of Tony Almo, Assault on VA-33 and Jungle Room) and his wife Dr. Jennifer Hill (Gina Holden of Final Destination 3, Psych, The Butterfly Effect 2, Blood Ties, Flash Gordon: A Modern Space Opera, Screamers: The Hunting, Harper's Island, Saw: The Final Chapter, Dear Santa, Sand Sharks, The Exorcism of Molly Hartley and Boy in the Attic) who specializes in treating Vets that have suffered mentally and physically from foreign wars. 

 

Do NOT interrupt Sudoku time!


 

 

 

 

 

Jason and Sara have a lunch date with Jennifer but she gets a last minute arrival patient that needs to be evaluated for the Pentagon's satisfaction, the head of Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Welch (sOooooo many grape jelly references to be had) (Gerald Webb of The Stalker Within, In My Sleep, Megashark vs. Crocosaurus, Camel Spiders, Battle of Los Angeles, Almighty Thor, 2012: Ice Age, A Haunting in Salem, Zombie Apocalypse, Super Shark, Lizard Man, Hold Your Breath and Android Cop) who is torn from his last mission and how his men were put into the equivalent of a wood chipper and he is messed up from it.


While he is in session, a collective of mercenaries are assembled under the command of Adrian Rabikov (Weston Cage Coppola of Lord of War, Raven, Rage, As Night Comes, Undercover, Circus Kane. NCIS: Los Angeles, D-Day: Battle of Omaha Beach, Get Gone and Assault on VA-33), a Brativa Captain and looking for revenge for his imprisoned brother. He is our Hans Grubber if you will. The man with the plan. FYI, son of this Nicholas Cage guy. I hear his dad has done some movies here and there.


The mercs move in, secure the building, load it with explosives and have men at key entry points assuring no interference. Hill heads out with his daughter but his trained eyes senses something is off and proceeds to call the cops. Chief Malone (Michael Jai White of Silverhawk, Spawn, Universal Soldier: The Return, Exit Wounds, Justice League Heroes, Tyler Perry's Why Did I Get Married?,The Dark Knight, Black Dynamite, Blood and Bone, Mortal Kombat: Legacy, Falcon Rising and Skin Trade) tries to talk down Hill with a bit of condescension and hangs up on him. 

 

Healing is a slow process and it can.. Hey! Eyes up here!


 

 

 

 

 

Their main sniper Jackson (Marc Dacascos of Only the Strong, Drive, The Crow: Stairway to Heaven, Brotherhood of the Wolf, Cradle 2 the Grave, I Am Omega, Wolvesbayne, Kamen Rider: Dragon Knight, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. And John Wick: Chapter 3- Parabellum) is topside and takes care of the roving cop checking on the VA, only to get smoked like salmon.


The chief is required to get the lead out of his ass and the crap out of his brain. He sets up a command center only to be swayed by the FBI telling him the old song and dance, " We do NOT negotiate with terrorists."

 



Hill dealing with his demons and the mercs is making his way to his wife, using weapons tactics and some solid martial arts. If anything, watch this for Dacascos and Flanery squaring off. AWESOME SCENE!

 

Yes, I will get Nicholas Cage's autograph for you.


 

 

 

 

 

Will Hill save the people in the VA? Will he lose his wife or daughter? Will Zero get out of the van?


Okay for those having an issue with the budget, shaddup! Solid stunt people co-ordination, airsoft guns and rifles with post-production instead of blank guns? Boo hoo! It is capable work, good cast and crew and gave it a concrete standing. My lone complaint? Michael Jai White NOT getting to whoop some ass. Oh sure, he got a gun fight but I didn't get to see him uncork and break out his substantial collection of martial arts. It's a popcorn flick! Don't look for a deep meaning or extensional philosophical mindset. All in all, a fun film and was well put together.

 

When paintball games go bad...

 

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Rattlers 2

 Hello there Readers of the Rotten! So I received a few films courtesy of The Williamson Management Company, it was at the request of an old friend that I could give a review. Well considering I thought I was only getting a screener, I think I can get started on this.


So a sequel to a TV movie in 1976, thus putting 45 years since the previous outbreak; who could have seen a return of a creature feature? Why, the director/producer Dustin Ferguson (Camp Blood 4, Camp Blood 5, Nemesis 5: The New Model, Runaway Nightmare, Meathook Massacre II, Horndogs Beach Party, House of Pain, Aliens in LA, Axegrinder 2 and Tales for the Campfire 3) is bold enough to try. This is Rattlers 2. 

 

I just wanted a bath!!!


 

 

 

 

 

Giving you a bit of continuity; in 1976 deep in the Mohave Desert, a town was infested by a plethora of rattlesnakes due to an experimental nerve gas that the government cancelled for use. It was buried into an abandoned mine that the snakes just happened to been dwelling in and they went mad, attacking people left and right. A cover-up, a military tribunal and a lunatic major was the order of the day, along with bell bottoms, dated dialogue, a misogynistic herpetologist (study of reptiles) and a very angry feminist photographer. 

 

Killer snakes? This is what you bother me with?


 

 

 

 

 

Penned by Josh Price (After Hours Cinema, Rattlers 2 and Lone Star Horrors) and Lee Turner (Shadowmarsh and Rattlers 2) tells the tale of 45 years later, a small town in California has been having a rash of snake attacks. Our film opens with a series of establishing shots that says... yes this is Southern California, possibly the Mohave. Some wonderful drone shots on the very rattlers in question. Enter our hapless photographer on a quest to be first one attacked. Taking snaps of rattlesnakes and getting closer and closer to them. Yup can't foresee anything bad happening there.


From the title card, it really feels like a throwback to the 1970s TV creature feature era, which I love.


The Sheriff's station is going to get more than a few concerned citizens calling in, but I don't think he'll have enough deputies at hand for this potential crisis. Sheriff Wilson (D.T. Carney of Cold Blood Canyon, Forbidden Border, Transmorphers: Fall of Man, John Dies at the End, Garlic & Gunpowder, Moon of the Blood Beast and Tales for the Campfire 3) has got his work cut out for him. With a minor amount of exposition and flashback footage of the original film, Josh Price and Lee Turner manage to connect the two films without it feeling like it was forced down your throat.

It feels like a natural progression and catches folks up to speed.

 

SNAKE HICKEY!!!


 

 

 

 

 

With all the blasting around the rattlers and given their mutations from the first film, 4 decades could easily create new hybrids ready to reek havoc on the town. Commissioner Lewis isn't going to close the beaches..er wait. No, sorry that's Jaws. My bad. The tearing up and rebuild will bring revenue to the town and this talk of roves of killer snakes is poppycock. Dare we even say balderdash?


We do have more than a few familiar Ferguson faces attached to our feature. The original Scream Queen herself, Brinke Stevens, amazing character actor Mel Novak, the wonderful Dawna Lee Heising, the very comedic Shawn C. Phillips, the tattooed beauty horror actress Julie Anne Prescott and Malvolia: The Queen of Screams herself Jenn Nangle. I really enjoyed Mercedes Peterson's performance as Dr. Kaye and cannot wait to see what she does next.




You'll have to bear with me as I had only seen the original twice in my life. Once when I was all of 5, and later about 42 when Cinematic Titanic was teasing and riffing their way through it.


Naturally I feel the name of  Professor McCauley is a nod to writer/director John McCauley (Rattlers and Deadly Intruder) and the film truly feels like an homage to the original.  This was clearly a labor of love and well executed. It's almost reminiscent of Richard Franklin tackling Psycho II to Hitchcock's original, in the sense a fan made film did as well; if not better than the previous movie. Once again, Dustin knocks another one out of the ball park. 

 

Damn snakes even attacked my paperwork!

 

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Camo vs Genevieve

Welcome back Readers of the Rotten. Yes I have been pounding the virtual pavement and getting a handful of freelance gigs but nothing continuous writings. But enough of that, today we have a reprising director/writer Nicholas Michael Jacobs (Night, Urban Fears, Tales from Six Feet Under, Genevieve, Genevieve Wreaks Havoc and Twisted Tales), who has asked me to review his horror/comedy continuing the legacy of the warped little doll and the monstrous behavior that we are accustomed from her. This is Camo vs Genevieve 

 

Genevieve is a messy eater...of souls.


 

 

 

 

 

So back again from NMJ Films request to gaze further into the warped world of Genevieve. We last we looked in on Genevieve; our little murderous moppet, she had just dispatched David (actor/producer/director Nicholas Michael Jacobs of Puppet Master X:Axis Rising, Night, Urban Fears, Tales from Six Feet Under and Genevieve) and was found roaming about by Ted Morris, (Shawn C. Phillips of Camp Blood 4, Camp Blood 5, Grindsploitation, Killer Waves, Witchcraft 16: Hollywod Coven, Cannibal Cop, Urban Fears, Axegrinder 2 and Camp Blood 8: Revelations) home owner and distraught father who had just returned home from his son's funeral. It is unclear if he knew Genevieve's dark past or her homicidal tendencies but boy you'd think you would want to keep a close eye on that or the cops are going to wonder why there are so many dead mail carriers on your front porch.


Alas this good wisdom will not been carried out by Ted as Genevieve decides she is better off without Ted and turns on him as well. Given the sheer convenience of having Ted out of the house while is attending his late son's funeral, this critic wonders if it was in fact, the dark doll doing in Ted's son.


Flying Squirrel Attack!

 

 

 

 

 

 

No sooner has Genevieve dealt a death blow to Ted, a camouflaged jumpsuit and hockey wearing, knife wielding individual makes his way into the house. Given this is in the middle of the morning, my question should stand when I ask, "What the hell did the neighbors think seeing this garbed guy with a butcher knife?!" What went through their heads? Hmm, is that a cosplayer? Maybe a Friday the 13th fanboy? A disgruntled paintballer by chance?


Our lurking hulk is known only as Camo (actor/producer/director Nicholas Michael Jacobs of Puppet Master X:Axis Rising, Night, Urban Fears, Tales from Six Feet Under and Genevieve), as he purposely came to the house in search of what or whom? Could Camo be after Genevieve? Perhaps they have crossed paths before. Is Genevieve responsible for some tragic event that created Camo? Can Camo end Genevieve and her evil ways or is he simply mad at her for taking his chosen kills?


Genevieve's previous address was Amityville.


 

 

 

 

 

 

Scouring the house trying to find Genevieve, Camo realizes there are plenty of places for her to hide, given she is about 24 inches tall. Before any of you scoff at that, keep in mind she could bite into a calf muscle, that nerve cluster up the outside your calf or just slash open the Achilles tendon and watch Camo flop to the floor.


Camo and the murderous, malefic moppet do battle. Genevieve seeming to have the upper hand but Camo stabs her to the level worthy of Norman Bates.  One would conclude the fight has ended and Camo may want to tend to his minor wounds. But is Genevieve finally over?


Again the synthesizer score brought by Nicholas Michael Jacobs ratchets up the tension well and gives it an old school slasher vibe about the movie. The impeding battle score to the lulling persons into a false sense of security, mellow chords. All this is accomplished on a meager budget, with good camera and lighting techniques, that makes me wonder what could be captured with a large funding.

Having Sockmonkey murder flashbacks...

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

DC Showcase: The Spectre

 


Hidey-ho, Readers of the Rotten! Sorry but I had to change up that intro, otherwise it gets rather dull. Today, I wanted to look at some of DC Comics animated showcase. What I thought was going to be a fairly longer and more played out story line turned out to be a short. That will not detract my want to write this but it won't be all that detailed aside from my knowledge of the existing character. This is The Spectre.


The Dreaded Emo!!!


 

 

 

 

 

 

Not to be confused with the alternative title to the 1963 Riccardo Freda's The Ghost ( A common misconception, I know.), the short film in question can be found on the 2010 release for Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths. An early morning in the hills of Los Angeles, a movie mogul name of Foster Brenner (Jeff Bennet of Johnny Bravo, Star Wars: Jedi Knight- Jedi Academy, Looney Tunes: Back in Action, Striperella, The Powerpuff Girls, Dave the Barbarian, Duck Dodgers, The Batman, Saul of the Mole Men, and Justice League: The New Frontier) lands a blockbuster and decides to take an 9 a.m.dip in the pool, only to have an explosion and shock-wave send him into the hereafter. Well at least his last flick wasn't something like Ishtar or Gigli.


Told you that Michael Bay kid had moxy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Police are notified by the butler (also voiced by Jeff Bennet) and homicide and probably the bomb squad's expertise is on the scene, along with veteran detective, Jim Corrigan (Gary Cole of Office Space, Crusade, Vamp U, The Penguins of Madagascar, An Officer and a Murderer, 30 Rock, Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, Archer, The Good Wife, Justice League Action, and F Is for Family) who is friends with the family, decided to survey the blast site and offer condolences to Aimee, (Alyssia Milano of Who's The Boss, Commando, Fear, Embrace of the Vampire, Deadly Sins, Charmed, My Name Is Earl, Hall Pass, Romantically Challenged, Tempting Fate and Insatiable)vowing to right this tragic wrong.


Things and people aren't always what they seem to be in this crazy town and...okay I have to tone this down or it's going to sound like a knock off of Mickey Spillane or Raymond Chandler. Sorry about that. Our detective is no slouch in the powers of observation, primarily around the wages of sin.   You see, Corrigan has a little secret he has kept quiet for some time.  He's been dead for quite a few years.   I know the whole inert investigator, the ghost gumshoe sounds awkward at best but he has been chosen by a higher power to redeem his soul.  This is the portion of the review of a bit of exposition dump.  I normally don't do such a thing buuuut, our short is 13 minutes long so we need a little background.


Oh yeah? What about the rights of that little girl?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jim Corrigan was LAPD detective 2nd class before mobsters dropped him in an oil drum filled with cement and into the bay to sink. Given he was a hard nosed cop, he may have beaten a confession out of a few suspects in the day or threaten their rights so he is a soul that should head to redemption. His soul is linked to an ancient power. The Wrath of God known as The Spectre. (Not KHAAAAAAAN!!) He can be a physical person when he wants to and he can go ghost if needs be. Manifests over objects, warps reality and can do serious damage to the living and the physical plane. Hell, in the comics he ate the souls of the damned and sent them to judgement. Technically he has been with the department since 1932 when he got gacked but hey, who's really in charge of record keeping, right?


The police captain (Voiced by the late great character actor Jon Polito of C.H.U.D., Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins, Highlander, Crime Story, The Equalizer, Barton Fink, The Rocketeer, Homicide: Life on the Street, Lands of Lore III, and The Tailor of Panama) is looking to bust Corrigan's chops for stepping into an investigation that isn't his, nor can it really be due to his personal involvement. The captain wants Corrigan to look into the sudden death of one of the suspects into the Brenner murder. Yup so go investigate the murder of one of the potential murderers of your family friend. Um, isn't that still a no-no due to personal involvement of the victim's potential victim?


Jim starts nosing around in these suspects' lives to come up with the clues needed to close his case and God's will. Unlike anyone else kicking this dirt clod of a planet, Jim is focused, capable and not easily distracted by Life's pursuits or fancies. That helps keep a sharp mind and well you can't very well bribe, cajole or distract with jiggly girls to a guy that pushed off the mortal coil.


Overall, while brief this short is got that gritty L.A. Noir vibe of the dogged detective, maybe a femme fatale and more than a few homicides. The music score sounds like something out of Dirty Harry or The French Connection.  While I wish it was a longer story, it had a great vo cast, gorgeous music score and the animation was top notch. Yes I would love a Spectre series Live Action or animated but so far, that is not in the works. C'mon DC! The fans would love it.


Additional; holy crap Gary Cole did awesome voice work! Keep tossing him in front of the mic!

 

Stop crowding and just go around me!!

 

Friday, February 26, 2021

Ten Minutes to Midnight

 Hey folks, welcome back to reading some rotten. This last year has been a rough patch. Reviewing films strictly from home and not a theater operational, putting jobs on hold and some outright terminated.  We can only hope to get through this pandemic.

And now away from that bit of morbid and on to what we are up to this day.  Today I have heard nothing but good things for your soon-to be reading pleasure.   A veteran Punk Rock DJ (Caroline Williams) dealing with being on the way out and her plucky replacement (Nicole Kang) being all sorts of bubbly, it's enough to break the spirits.  This is Ten Minutes to Midnight.

 

Terribly pleased or waiting to eat your soul? Who can say?


 

 

 

 

 

Shock jock Amy Marlowe (Caroline Williams of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, Stepfather II, Days of Thunder, Leprechaun 3, Halloween II, The Unleashed, Hatchet III, Blood Feast and Greenlight) has ruled the graveyard shift for some time, being more diva than DJ, she's has stepped on more than toes and rubbed people the wrong way. As if her mood wasn't foul enough, a storm is brewing out in the night, she's been attacked by a bat and feeling a bit weird.

Front desk/security drone, Ernie (Nicholas Tucci of Choose, You're Next, Chilling Visions: 5 Senses of Fear, Faults, Wolfenstein: The New Order, The Cobblestone Corridor, Daredevil, Person of Interest, Quantico and Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus) warns Not Stretch that if it was a bat bite, she could have rabies. He offers her a lift to the hospital but the roads are completely thrashed and she is too professional to miss a show.  Ernie has the awful job of informing Amy that "Bob" wants to see her in his office. Yeah being called to the mat is never a good sign before you punch in. 

 

Totally BFFs with Batwoman. For realzy.


 

 

 

 

 

Station Manager Bob does not have bitch tits (Yes, a Fight Club reference. I couldn't pass it up) but he certainly has something in his craw about Amy. He is also a skirt chaser with a bit of a belly and enough clout in the station to make or break a career. You know, a local base, but I suppose enough slander on a former employee might cause hell for any future prospects. Amy meets with a young, perky girl Sienna (Nicole Kang of You, The Social Ones, Swallow, Orange Is the New Black, Instinct, Acting for a Cause and Batwoman) plans on sitting in on Amy's show and all starry-eyed at what will be her new job.  Clearly Bob is hoping to plow her like the back 40 but hopefully Sienna doesn't fall for the casting couch.


Sound producer Aaron (Adam Weppler of Twelfth Night, The Cobblestone Corridor, Groove, Long Lost and Alien Warfare) is fully aware that Bob is being a horndog, agrees with Amy that Sienna is pretty much eye candy but she has some good range and pitch for vocals. I daresay kittens on not on Aaron's mind but a certain blonde cougar on the other hand, yeah boy has the hungry eyes for her.

Amy is already in a mood and decides she's gonna cut loose so callers beware when you "Ask Amy". After dropping enough "F-bombs" that would have made even comedian/pod-caster Joe Rogan a bit uncomfortable, Bob steps in the booth to chew some hinder. Amy responds with a savage series of retorts and ends up biting the hell out of Sienna's hand, growling and fleeing to the bathroom. She's hearing voices, hallucinating scenarios out of the norm and frankly kinda going a bit bat-shit crazy. 

 

I make this same face after Taco Bell.


 

 

 

 

 

Now it could have been linked to the bat bite oooooor...Sienna dropped acid earlier and it is floating in her bloodstream because Amy is tripping BALLS!!!   Convinced she is getting a bit "close" with Bob (Greg Balla of A Crime to Remember and Ten Minutes to Midnight) looking young and dapper but a bit of a sleazy attitude, is giving Amy the eye.   Yup little bit of make-out or DID IT REALLY HAPPEN??!!!

 



 This flick just jumps ten hellfire-imbued flaming sharks over Coppersnake Canyon and baffles the crap out of me, more so than that explanation did for you.  A veritable Behind the Looking Glass via Lewis Carrol vibe happening and it is bizarre.   To be shocked by a film is so damn uncanny any more; especially in Horror films this day and age. When we have so many existing tropes to lend a hand, so to see something with a small cast, a normal environment and watch it go off the rails is a rarity to behold.


Produced by Mainframe Pictures (The Cobblestone Corridor, Ghost Tour, Intermedium, She Came from the Woods, Long Lost and Weekenders), this movie embraces a myriad of vampire mythology, a woman's mind frame about aging, goals, friends, family and love all changing over time and how we see ourselves year after year. Between the two women, I cannot say who I enjoyed more, Caroline or Nicole. Both brought their ""A-Game" and both delivered. What I thought was going to be a hybrid of From Dusk 'Til Dawn meets Play Misty for Me turned out to be wildly entertaining, very bloody and just downright creepy. This is not a typical vampire flick, nor could I put this in a per-designated category as I normally can.


Director Erik Bloomquist (The Cobblestone Corridor, Ghost Tour, She Came from the Woods, Long Lost and Weekenders) spins a macabre tale of aging, feeling obsolete, craving youth and being young with dreams on the rise. With enough blood and gore to satisfy most horror fans but enough story to bring a wide array of viewers to stay in front of the screen; this movie delivers the goods. I was happily surprised and frankly, I am wanting it for my collection. Hell, I want the soundtrack too. 

 

Really? A Leatherface joke? Really?


Thursday, February 11, 2021

The Butchers

 Greetings Readers of the Rotten. Well I'm back with a much requested horror movie. Yeah I'm thrilled to be diving back into this genre (he said with the greatest amount of sarcasm), so we will see if this is remotely entertaining. A gathering of strangers on a bus having their bus break down, brings them to a house and yes THEY READ FROM THE BOOK! This is The Butchers a.k.a. Death Factory a.k.a. The Factory 

 

Silent but deadly...


 

 

 

 

 

Now the film I found had the title "Death Factory" but it was not the Brad Sykes 2002 movie. So it is a film of alternative titles!!! YAY! Always a good sign! Yes we have the trope goodness of young teens to 20 somethings recipe of disturbing the dead, the monster, the ancient curse. Those pesky kids with their boozing, fornication and loving life. Our opening credits look like a combo platter of Super 8 movies, old stills, TV static and an acid trip. Combining eerie chamber music with these visions makes this flick already bizarre. Oh and I forgot the biggest spoilers of them all, the fricking serial killer trial publications. Way to let that one slip out of the bag.


Brothers Simon (Damien Puckler of 666: The Beast, Death Racers, Camel Spiders, Grimm,Chase and Redwood Massacre: Annihilation) and Brian (Cameron Bowen of Blue's Clues, Touched by an Angel, Fraiser, Disney Golf, American Dreams, Seabiscuit, Mystic River, Wristcutters: A Love Story, Young Justice, and Young Justice: Legacy) are stuck on a bus, Simon relives a nightmare of him killing his father after his father slain his mother. Always a classic, right?

 

That chick in the earlier picture float an air biscuit?


 

 

 

 

 

Meanwhile a eerie looking lawyer JB (Semi Anthony of Circle of Influence, Against the Grain, The Chosen Ones, Death Factory, Modern Family, Triumph, Abby Grace and Headgame) is "hell bent" to purchase this a museum honoring serial killers or edifying them. The landowner on the other hand, he doesn't feel like selling in spite of the generous offer by JB.   JB decides to fall back on his second offer and stabs said landowner to death and get on about his business.   His business is reading from THE BOOK OF THE DEAD??!!! He get that from Ashley J Williams??!  Ash drop that on eBay?!   Actually, that does sound like a bonehead move Ash would do.  Don't forget to say every, tiny syllable.


The museum happens to hold the blood samples of all said serial killers. Hold up. Suspending disbelief here. Since when did this particular ghoulish effect occur in forensics?  Why would law enforcement as far back as Albert Fish a.k.a. The Cannibal Vampire would have blood samples and how on God's green Earth and convoluted plot line would this dinky museum have the money, power and connections to acquire their blood???

 

Daggum CGI fires!


 

 

 

 

 

 

At this point, the bus breaks down in the same dinky, ghost town and our passengers are forced off the bus for repairs.  PLOT POINT!!!  Let's get a Mouseketeer line-up of our soon-to-be deadies. There's plucky Nicole (Ire Wardlaw of Leverage, Hopelessy in June, Blackstar Warrior, Gone Girl, Intruder and State of Desolation), premiscous Candi (Charito Mertz of Passions, The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, Greek, Days of Our Lives, Trapped: Haitian Nights, Next Stop fo Charlie, CityBird and FCU: Fact Checkers Unit), steadfast Star (actress/stunt person Tonya Kay of The Muppets, Fully Loaded, Silverwood: Final Recordings, Raze, The Lone Ranger, Dark Space, The Kill Corporation, Nightmare Code, Bastard, The Other Wife, The Amityville Terror, The Fosters and A Better Place), doofus horndog Kip (Jacob Hobbs of Almost a Woman, Hercules, Death Factory, Headgame and Army of One), bellicose Ren (Jeremy Thorsen of America's Court with Judge Ross, Decisions, Tosh.0, Girls of Sunset Place, B4, Deadly Wives and Hotels Secrets & Legends), Daisy (Mily Sanders of Profiler, Boyz Nite Out/Grrlz Nite in, The Removals, Humbug, Sunday Driver and Here Piggy Piggy) and...Bill (Braxton Davis of Samurai Cop 2: Deadly Vengeance, The Ghetto, WEAPONiZED, A Weekend with the Family, Let It Bleed, Causal Encounters, Better Criminal, The Aliens and American Exorcism).


Off the bus and screwing around, Ren and Star find the Book of the Dead and OF COURSE they read from it, thus resurrecting six nutter butters to a night of holy terror.  SMOOOOTH!!! Your encore is what?  Bad touching someone's mother while simultaneously pouring sugar in my gas tank??!!

 

Tee hee. Plot development.


 

 

 

 

 

 

And yes, yes yes fellas, there's titty. Every friggin' time I review a slasher film, it is almost always asked so yes bewbs are a happenin'. They can't further the plot, but they can momentarily distract you.


Let's not make this out like all I am doing is bashing the film. This was a professional crew, lighting, sound and film all commercial grade, the cast did their best with the given dialogue and money was made.   Thing is I simply was not captured by it.   So at the end of the day I was not emotionally invested in the film and this is just my opinion.   Would I advise people to watch it?  No.  That doesn't mean someone else won't watch and take away from the movie what I could not.

 



Overall, there is some clever ideas like what was done with Jack the Ripper, the SFX gore and a bit of CGI is feasible but it boils down to gore gags, less than stellar dialogue and two-dimensional characters.  That's not to say this was a bad film, it just lacked cohesion.  A lot of ideas and a limited ability to house them all.  I have seen better movies but again this wasn't crap.   A lot of thought went into it but clearly this was a real difficult one to pull off well.


Your weapons, your clothes, give them to me.


Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Chopper Chicks in Zombietown

How do Readers of the Rotten. Well, it's time once again for a fan request and yeah it's a Troma movie. I'm not pleased at that but I will let it go and not vent my spleen. Yeah we are back in B-movie territory so buckle up, brace yourself and make peace with your dear and fluffy lord. This is Chopper Chicks in Zombietown a.k.a. Chrome Hearts a.k.a. Zombie Town a.k.a. Cycle Sluts 

 

Looks like they just barely "Escape From the Bronx!"


 

 

 

 

 

Yup right off the bat, we got alternative titles with writer/director Dan Hoskins (Pretty Smart and Chopper Chicks in Zombietown) seemed to wanted some dark humor with his horror film and I believe he managed it.


Our opening title card begins with "Life's a bitch and then you die. Usually." Followed by a maniacal cackle, I think that sets a tone. Cut right to the girls on bikes zooming along. Hey! California is a helmet law state! Rule breakers!


A gang of biker chicks are out raising hell and giving it their all. They screw around in this remote California town Zariah, scaring the locals and creating all sorts of malarkey. Heavens!  They could ratchet it up to tomfoolery. These girls are far less intimidating than The Switchblade Sisters and I love the serious tone the film is trying to put out. 

 

Welcome to Thorton's Casting Couch.


 

 

 

 

 

These group of Jezebels are ran by Rox (Lyica Naff of St. Elsewhere, The Clan of the Cave Bear, Fame, Lethal Weapon, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Return to Green Acres, Total Recall and The Flash (1990 version), this brunette smoke show and IMDB is showing her as T.C. Sooooo somebody screwed up and I don't think it's the film.  Getting back to our opus of a film, the girls had an encounter in the last town and gave exposition about a member name of Candy, stating we don't need any more heat on us.  FYI, their gang is called The Sluts. Not exactly terrifying. Might I make a few suggestions that won't get you laughed at? The Vipers? The Ball Breakers? The Insanguinators? Hoes of Death? Just mull those over.


Feels like I just stepped into some 70s biker exploitation movie and got a little bit of zombie on my boot. Big surprise is the local yokels don't take kind them there biker trash. The local mortician just removed a body and replaced him with sand bags in the coffin. Foreshadow perhaps? Or maybe he's either a necromancer (mage with powers over the dead) or a necrophile (man or woman with obscene infatuations for the dead). Either way, I am sure it will progress the story.


Bob's gotta roscoe now, see? Meh.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The local dwarf, Bob Littleton (Ed Gale of Howard the Duck, Phantasm II, Child's Play, Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey, Dolly Dearest, Land of the Lost (1991-1992 version) and O Brother, Where Art Thou?) is in charge of population. That is he and his chalkboard establish the live ones accounted. Bob Littleton. They really just gave Bob the shaft there, didn't they? Guess Seymour Butts was too classy. FYI, Ed there is credited as Chucky's stunt double in Child's Play. Does that mean they tossed him into fireplace or the wall? One wonders.


The town Sheriff Not Wiggum (Lewis Arquette of The Real Ghostbusters, A Pup named Scooby Doo, Tango & Cash, Tales from the Crypt, Book of LoveYo Yogi, Hypernauts and Mojave Moon) and his mustache might not care for these chippies in his here jurisdiction. And yes he is father of Patricia, Rosanna, Alexis and David Arquette. Even stars in Scream 2 as Chief Hartley.

 

Ernie?!


 

 

 

 

 

Shockingly enough, our mortician is also a mad scientist name of Ralph Willum (Don Calfa of 1941, The Return of the Living Dead, Weekend at Bernie's, Bugsy, Doctor Dolittle, Downward Angel, Night Creep and Sharkskin) is responsible for all this mayhem to even happen. Shame on you, Ernie! Didn't you learn from The Return of the Living Dead?


Naturally the best way to not provoke the undead, the supernatural or demons is to STOP PESKY KIDS. You all know what I am talking about. They read from the book, they trash the cemetery, they take a crap in your refrigerator's crisper bin.  KEEP an eye on these little chaos factories.


As luck or plot point would have it, a bus full of blind orphans (many of which are smoking) has been stalled out not far from the abandoned zombie mine. Uh-oh Spagetti-Os! By the way, as a subplot, no I have no idea why the blind orphans are doing out in the heated two lane blacktop. Traveling to go see The American Gladiators? That may require sight. Um...off to hear New Kids on the Block? No wait, that would require wanting to listen.


Well, the cat or in this case, the scourge of zombies? Maybe a plethora of zombies? A mass of zombies? Well however you want to quantify it, the ghouls are loose and looking for flesh.

 



Sheriff Not Wiggums asks for the Sluts' help in saving those blind orphans and defending the town. The proper answer is NOPE. ALL THE NOPES! Alas the Sluts may have hearts of gold and join in the fray. With the populous be zombie food? Couldn't they call in the National Guard or Raccoon City's S.T.A.R.S.?


We have a quote from the Austin Chronicles via its VHS box cover claiming, "Shades of Night of the Living Dead and a bit of The Seven Samurai, Chopper Chicks in Zombietown is a very smart and very funny movie." Hmm, late 80s...beating the deadlines. AHA! Cocaine was the deciding factor!  It all makes sense now.


What did I take away from this picture? Well the humor was dark to the level of Night of the Creeps, some decent tongue-in-cheek gags and the zombie FX was fair for this low budget job. Gorgeous girls beating the crap out of zombies. Sorry fellas there is absolutely no titty in our flick today WHATSOEVER.   I too, was stunned at this.   Guess they were going more for female empowerment rather than give off a jiggle fest.  Now use those McDonald's napkins and dry your tears, boys.  At the end it was gory and goofy. Felt like I took my brain offline and just had a few laughs.

 

She really likes that jukebox.