Gross Movie Reviews #329
By Tim Gross
Freddy’s Nightmares TV series (DVD-R) – The Nightmare on Elm St. series started off with great intentions in 1988-1989. Hell, Freddy was huge he was on the Today show, Arsenio Hall, the character that was burned by vengeful parents and comes back to kill teenagers in their dreams was a household name in the late 80s. So New Line Cinema decided let’s make a TV show. Trying to capitalize on the Freddy character with more adventures sounded great until it hit TV. First two episodes revolve around the origins of Freddy but after that many episodes came off as lame attempt of another “Tales from the Darkside” or “Tales from the Crypt”. Most horror fans like me thought we would get more about Freddy killing the Elm St. teenagers instead you a lot boring TV show. But soon it was apparent that once the TV series was launch Freddy would come in only for an intro and ending of the show and the budget of the show was cut in half quickly. If you ever have the displeasure of watching all the episodes you will notice three or four sets were used in almost every episode. The show had its issues besides not having much Freddy: the show wasn’t on what was considered a major network at the time, budget cut in half, Robert Englund was getting tired of the make-up during this span cause he was also doing part 4 and 5, and overall the show didn’t separate itself from the usual horror TV shows that flooded the market late night on weekends. But me being Tim Gross, I pushed through all 22 episodes of boring crap to find out the show still pisses me off like it did when I was 13 years old watching it. But I did come across an episode I did not remember called “Love Stinks” starring Jeffrey Combs who plays a manager of a pizza shop who uses body parts as his secret ingredient for pizza toppings! The show was briefly released on VHS in the 90s but was scarce and many episodes can be found on YouTube but there have been no plans for this series and maybe for good reason to find its way onto DVD. For me I thought this series could have been so much more if the right writers were behind it but they were not as I give the series ½ star out of 4.
Prom Night (Blu-ray) – Some kids are playing a weird game at an abandon building until an accident happens; a little girl falls out a window and dies. The friends swear not to tell anyone about it. A few years later they are all getting ready for the high school prom but someone has other plans for those involved. Someone in a black mask is out for blood as they are killing one by one the seniors who were involved in the tragic accident they swore to secrecy years ago. Jamie Lee Curtis and Leslie Neilson star in the horror film that has now become known as the beginnings of the “slasher era”. Synapse Films has now given the film a much needed upgrade as the VHS and first DVD release were never of great quality. But also included Additional scenes, great outtakes, an interesting making-of which goes into how the film came to be, and has one of the most entertaining commentaries with director Paul Lynch and screenwriter William Guy. Most commentaries can be long winded and boring at times unless its John Carpenter which I haven’t heard a bad one yet from that dude. But these days everyone thinks they should do one for their film and it doesn’t mean it’s a good thing for the fans. For “Prom Night” I felt like I learned a lot more about the film and how it came to be and have new respect for Paul Lynch as he had some great stories not only about his stars but some of the interesting people behind the scenes. Example: there is a great story about a dude who steals a van for a scene in the movie! Mr. Lynch figured enough time has passed that he could talk about the stolen van they blew up! Great stuff… I give the package 3 out of 4 stars and more details about the Blu-ray can be found at www.synapse-films.com .
Bait (DVD) – Tidal waves hit Australia and put their version of Wal-Mart trapped under water and sharks attacking the trapped survivors. A former lifeguard, his ex, and Dr. Doom try to help get the survivors out before Australian Jaws eats everyone. I give the film 2 stars.
Dead Air (DVD) – One of my favorite underrated actors Gregory Hines is a DJ in this 90s film that has his character haunted by a female phone caller that seems to be getting in his mind and screwing with him or is she? The film is influenced by Clint Eastwood’s “Play Misty for Me” but gives the story a different twist. If you are a Gregory Hines fan the film is worth a watch as I give it 2 stars.
Found (Vimeo) – An award winning independent film made for about $8000 with the story revolving around a 12 year old boy who is at that awkward age of “are you a boy, are you a teenager?” The boy is named Marty and narrates a lot of the film as Marty looks up to his older brother who likes horror movies and does not have many friends. But Marty’s brother does have a secret and it is in the closet in a bowling ball bag. Marty likes to go and inspect what’s in the bag as it changes often. Marty doesn’t have many friends either and gets bullied often in school but he is more concerned learning more about his brother because he looks up to him and his parents who don’t care for the brother. But as we get to the heart of the film, the movie goes from a story of a boy’s innocence and awkwardness to complete off the hinge brutality in the last 20 or 30 minutes that will leave your jaw hanging open! This movie is amazing and has one of the best endings since the release of the horror film “Inside”! One of the best independent films that I have seen in 2014 as I give it 4 out of 4 stars. It is available on DVD at amazon.com and if it helps it got banned twice in Australia because its original cut of the film. It also won the first ever Elvira’s Horror Hunt Film Festival. More about the film can be found at: http://www.theoctoberpeople.net/ or their Facebook page of the same name.
Escape Plan (DVD) – Stallone, Arnie, Vinnie Jones, 50 Cent, Sam Neil, that dude that played Jesus, that weird chubby dude from “Full Metal Jacket”, who isn’t in this flick? Stallone breaks out of prison for a living to show flaws in the system for the government, etc. to fix. This time Stallone is given a job for a prison that no one knows the location and it is for people the world just wants them to disappear. It’s a new high tech prison like no other and there is no escape until Stallone meets Arnold, together they can break out of the place! This is high grade action-cheese that I love… This is the kinda of stuff I was screaming for in the early 90s and my wishes have been granted with this flick, “The Expendables”, “JCVD”, etc. I give it 3 stars.
Fast & Furious 6 (DVD) – These car racing, drug dealing, weapons stealing, completely unrealistic movie plots are my guilty non-horror pleasure for the mere reason they are entertaining and I get to see Jason Statham fuck somebody up even its for only 30 seconds. This series proves Vin Diesel may not be the best actor but he is a smart one because he knows what makes money… I give it 3 stars.
Leprechaun Origins (DVD/remake) – The film that has been four or five years in the making is a giant disappointment. Four tourists visit a small Irish village for the history only to be locked in a cabin to be a sacrifice for a creature that loves gold. They escape and learn they are not the only ones that have been sacrificed for this creature. But apparently some folks stole a bunch of gold 15 years ago and the creature aka leprechaun is pissed off and these folks try to please him by giving him random tourists to kill. Let’s be realistic the “Leprechaun” series isn’t Oscar worthy material. But it was fun cheesy entertainment that had “Leprechaun Fly Girls”! This new version pretty much turns the character we all know and love into a SyFy Channel monster movie of the week. GIMME MOTHER FUCKING WARWICK DAVIS!!! I wasn’t opposed to an update or Dylan Postal aka Hornswoggle playing the leprechaun character but with all the blur effect, the make-up and creatures effects what was the point? But be warned by the lackluster movie I was waiting for and was disappointed by as I give it 1 ½ stars at the most.
Dead Snow 2: Red vs. Dead (On Demand) – We see Martin has survived the bloodbath of the first film but has forgotten he has a gold coin in the car and the Nazi zombies still want it! After Martin has driven off the road and wrecked. The Nazi zombies have a new mission and they need new soldiers to complete it. Meanwhile Martin has a zombie arm reattached to his body and is believed by police to have killed everyone on the mountain top. Martin knows he must stop Herzog and his zombie army or this will never end. Martin gets in touch with the Zombie Squad through the internet and they are hell bent on helping Martin stopping the Nazi zombie army from completing their mission! The sequel is just as awesome as the first flick and like the first film “Dead Snow 2” wastes no time making sure this will be a memorable and over the edge zombie film you will never forget. We got supernatural zombie arms, gore, zombies driving tanks, kids getting smashed and torn to pieces, Russian soldier zombies, more gore, reviving zombies all what you would expect from a sequel to one of the most memorable zombie films ever made ! I give the flick 4 stars and to me is one of the best horror movies of 2014…
The Chilling (VHS) – Linda Blair plays a character named Mary who helps clients through the process of having their loved ones transition to the cryo freezing process in hopes of a better tomorrow. But Mary doesn’t know the doctor and his assistant that she works for are selling the people’s organs in Mexico for big bucks. That is until during a bad storm on Halloween night lightening hits the building and the cryo tubes that turns all in them into burned C.H.U.D. imitations who are pissed off and fucking people up. With the help of a client and Grizzly Adams playing a security guard they must refreeze the weird zombie/creatures in order to escape. Great low budget/late 80s fun that I give 2 stars.
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