Dracula 1979 (Blu-ray) – Another retelling of the famous old blood sucker this time around starring Frank Langella the vampire from Universal Studios. Donald Pleasence among other great actors surrounds this adventure in vampire lure. Not my favorite version of Dracula but this film has great a great cast, bat attacks, a fun Dracula death scene, and great set design. Clearly Universal waited too late to compete with Hammer but put their best foot forward except with the part of Dracula. Frank is kind of an odd pick and it shows but don’t let that discourage you from seeking out the newer cleaned up versions of this 1979 flick because enjoy it for what it is. Looking back Frank should have been maybe their tenth pick as Dracula not first or second as everything else they did a great job with as I thought it was time to rewatch this flick and give it 3 stars.
Mr. No Legs (DVD) – I believe the first person that ever alerted me to this amazing gem of exploitation has to be popular writer and podcaster Ed Demko several years ago as he raved about this feature. This late 70s crime thriller is all about drugs and thugs but what separates it from the others is the man who plays the muscle for a crime boss is a man with no legs! But it doesn’t stop there as Mr. No Legs is reminded by his boss a couple times throughout the feature that he was the one that took care of him after his accident. But Mr. No Legs has something to prove and he is one bad ass sum of a bitch as he has shotguns built into his wheelchair, goes swimming with hot women, knows martial arts, and knows how to take care of loose ends. When Mr. No Legs isn’t on screen we have two cops Chuck and Andy that are following leads to find out about the one’s sister’s death which eventually leads them to a fight with Mr. No Legs and his boss! This movie is wacky and entertaining as hell and if that isn’t enough at one point one of the cops is stabbing a corvette with a sword during one of their big fights at the end as I give this wonderful wackiness 3 ½ stars.
Alien Private Eye (VHS) – This 1989 film is terrible but it’s hilariously wonderful if you couldn’t tell by the title? Anyway Lemro is an alien on Earth who spends his time on Earth as a private eye trying to pick up hotties with his crazy dance moves in alleys and his living room! But when his new hottie of a girlfriend Rene gets involved with an artifact that holds the info for a designer drug from his home planet it is time for Lemro to get to work and crack this case. Lemro quickly finds out he isn’t the only alien hanging out on Earth and must figure out whom to trust? This film has everything that will make you shake your head and giggle like a teenage girl which also includes Lemro shooting lasers from his wrists late into the film to save his girlfriend. Now the movie is super terrible, no lie, but I have to give it 2 ½ stars for entertaining the hell out of me and I dare you go seek this one out.
Amityville in Space (DVD) – As usual for all of those who are keeping track with me this is entry #40 where Mark Polonia is back once again and actually got a lot of press with this project late in the summer. Now saying that this wasn’t exactly movie gold like a “Leprechaun 4: In Space”. This time around a priest has decided to take the fight to the haunted house one final time as they bill it ‘Good vs. Evil’. During the battle the demonic house gets bored and forces its way out of existence only to reappear in the year 3015 near a black hole where the space cruiser “Wyoming 227” is trying to decide if they should zap it out of existence? No dice kids’ as usual dumb white people gotta still go into the haunted ass house even in space and of course the space travelers are hit with unspeakable evil and oh yeah they find the priest hanging out in a closet. I won’t bore you with all the great details of why this makes sense but bottom line even in 3015 they are still unsure how to rid the world of this evil and believe me Polonia made sure there is room for a sequel. To me this entry feels like Polonia tried to put some thought into it like his “Deathhouse” entry but just falls flat. I don’t blame him for trying something new in the “Amityville” series, just feels he may have needed more help to pull off this venture as I give it 1 ½ stars for what it could have been…
The Snow Devils (DVD) – A mid-60s flick where the polar ice caps are melting because of some space Yetis and their invention from their home planet that they fucked up years ago! Alien Bigfoots I am in as I have to give this adventure 2 ½ stars.
Winterbeast (Blu-ray) – A film like “Spookies” that was started, never finished, and then restarted again over a couple of years has found its cult audience recently with its new Blu-ray release. Apparently a monstrous Native American legend is Claymation and pissed off as these odd shaped monsters are killing good folk at a popular mountain lodge. Throw in a dumb forest ranger and you got a movie that most of us are totally sure what it’s all about but enjoy the hell out of it as I give it 2 ½ stars.
Ninja (Blu-ray) – Scott Adkins is Casey, an orphaned American teenager who was taken into a legendary dojo that still teaches the way of the ninja. After a falling out with another pupil Masazuka Casey heads to New York from Japan to protect the Yoroi Bitsu or the treasure/weapons of the ninja. If you are a fan of titles “American Ninja” or “Enter the Ninja”? Welcome to a new generation of badassery kids because Scott Adkins and crew put on a show as this isn’t any 80s hokey shit going down Dudikoff as I give this 3 ½ stars.
Ninja II (Blu-ray) – Casey is back and living the life as the new master of the dojo, has a wife, and has just recently found out a kid soon to come. But things are not well when Casey comes home one evening going out for his pregnant wife to find her murdered. Then the rest of the movie becomes one bad ass fight for revenge as Casey after fucking up people in Japan heads to Thailand to obliterate all in his path to satisfy his thirst for revenge as I give the sequel 3 stars.
Creature from Black Lake (Blu-ray) – This 1976 film known to Bigfoot fans takes place in the swamp and small town of Louisiana called Oil City. Two college students from the University of Chicago convince someone to fund their little expedition to Louisiana to investigate and try to prove the existence of a creature called Bigfoot? After hearing about multiple reports of a man losing his friend to a swamp creature they want to study it. Once there of course the two college students stick out like a sore thumb and just try to do their thing without stirring up any trouble as they are in a different country basically. After not much success investigating and only hearing sounds outside of a barn they run into old local Joe Canton who points them in the right direction. That is when the two college boys come face to face with the local swamp creature legend and now just trying to survive its attacks! Only had the pleasure of seeing this feature as a youngster during the mid-80s not remembering any of it most likely because like most fans we all remember “Legend of Boggy Creek”. That film is usually the first that comes to everyone’s mind who grew up at time so cool titles like this get overshadowed. Well now is the time to rediscover this Bigfoot film as Synapse Films has taken the painstaking task of putting a special edition out and it looks unbelievable! This might be one of their best jobs to date with this cleanup of the film and adding a couple extras that will make fans very happy: commentary from Mike Gingold and Chris Poggali, and more importantly “Swamp Stories” with Dean Cundey which is informative, entertaining, and cool how the film was taken in by this small community at the time. Great stuff as I give this package 4 out of 4 stars and available at www.synapse-films.com .
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