Gross Movie Reviews #373
By Tim Gross
President Wolfman (DVD) – The title alone is what reeled me into wanting to watch this gem of a horror flick. But when I opened it and started to read the sleeve and began watching the film to my amazement the project was entirely stock footage of public domain titles and major parts are from the 1973 film ‘The Werewolf of Washington’. This 1973 film stars Dean Stockwell who was the go between for Sam and Ziggy from the ‘Quantum Leap’ show. But anyway the film is edited footage with new voiceovers, music, etc. Amazing work from Mike Davis and crew to craft a horror movie about president John Wolfman who tries to spend more time with his son Bobby and is attacked by a diseased coyote on a camping trip! From there mysterious murders are happening in the nation’s capital and that is the least of their problems as the Chinese continue their takeover of America. At one point President Wolfman has surgery that turns him into a hippie but reverses to a werewolf again. John Wolfman is also being pushed by Congress to sell out to the Chinese as they all will own a skyscraper in New York City. A fun horror film and a truly amazing accomplishment in editing by all involved. There were several parts of the film that I could not stop laughing at as I give this fun creation 3 ½ out of 4 stars. You can find this and many other fine films at www.wildeyereleasing.com .
Lumberjack Man (DVD) – First, did you know there was still an “After Dark Horror Fest”? Second, this film truly points out there are some lame slasher film ideas out there… But that didn’t stop me from watching Michael Madsen try to play a doctor who runs to Big Timber Woods to warn teenagers and forest rangers of the demon that lurks in the woods! Apparently every thirty years since 1892 a demon appears in the woods and kills whoever with his pancakes? If that isn’t enough to entice you to watch it, how about the demon can be killed by maple syrup?! I swear I am not making this shit up these types of films just seem to find their way to me. But I did thoroughly enjoy a scene where a teenager is thrown against a tree and then bent into several uncomfortable positions. I give this mess of a horror film 1 ½ stars.
I Saw the Devil (DVD) – Byung-Hun Lee aka bad ass dude that has shown up in recent action films and takeover or over shadows the stars in the film plays a bad ass in this film. But this isn’t just any type of action/horror weirdo fucked up flick? No, no, no Mr. Lee plays a character whose pregnant wife is killed by some nasty serial killer and for revenge wants to capture the man an torture him. Then repeat, torture, and then repeat, until innocent bystanders are now being killed in the process. But it’s one man’s quest to make the murderer to feel his pain. One fucked up and amazing film as I could not look away waiting to see what would happen next. I give this fun family flick 4 stars.
House (DVD) – Michael Madsen and most of ‘The Devil’s Rejects’ cast fuck with two couples who just happen to be stuck at an old house off of a back road. The cast is great, the plotline is pretty good but sometimes no household Hollywood types give this type of horror movie a grittiness that is memorable for the long run? For me it comes off more like some of our favorite celebrities were collecting a paycheck instead of being a part of something really awesome… I give the film 2 stars but sorry folks no William Katt, Richard Moll, or Norm from ‘Cheers’.
America’s Deadliest Home Video (DVD) – Apparently for the first time in 25 years this S.O.V. film is available again. As described on the inner sleeve it is the first “found-footage film” and it stars Danny Bonaduce. Between the inner sleeve and the two commentaries on the disc it is full of crazy information about this very rare feature. The stories about its making are amazing and just made the viewing experience that much better as I sat down and watched Doug played by Danny Bonaduce film everything going on around him. Doug is obsessed with filming everything especially now his wife of two years is found cheating on him. So Doug decides to jump into the mini-van and travels the US to film stuff. He eventually comes across three criminals simply known as “The Clint Dryer Gang”. Doug finds the three and films them pushing a car off of a cliff. They notice Doug and they take him captive. Unsure of killing him or not, Clint comes up with the idea of Doug filming all their criminal activity. From there Doug slowly finds himself a part of the gang and being filmed trying to hold up a place until he is shot. As authorities close in they turn on each other in a bloody climax. Not a horror film but easily a S.O.V. collector’s dream for this to be available again. Great stuff, interesting concept for when it was made (early 90s), and so happy Camp Motion Pictures/Alternative Cinema makes a project like this available again. I give this rare gem 3 out of 4 stars and can be found at www.alternativecinema.com .
The Outing (DVD-R/You Tube/DVD) – A lesser talked about horror film released in 1987 that I remember watching as a teenager on Skinamax. What makes this an interesting horror film it may be the first killer genie slasher film? Also the film was once released under the title “The Lamp”. But no one is sure if that version has the extra twenty minutes that was originally cut from the film before it had a short run at the theaters. Anyway the film begins with a mysterious death in 1893, Galveston, Texas, then to present day. In present day (!986/1987) three so-called thieves break into a woman’s home and try to steal the lamp for money but never make it out the door. The three are murdered by an unseen force from the lamp. From there the lamp is sent to a museum in Houston, Texas. Where a dude that is studying it has a daughter who gets a little too hands on with the lamp and becomes possessed by the Jinn and next thing you know she and friends stay the night after a field trip. Bad move folks, as the Jinn have a field day of killing teenagers off in various odd scenarios. I give this lesser known genie horror film 2 ½ stars but at least you know ‘Wishmaster’ perfected this formula eventually in the 90s.
Pi Day Die Day (DVD/Vimeo) – Not all the holidays have been taken or obscure ones or wait not sure if this is an actual day to be celebrated? But for the movie sake and for me just enjoying another random independent slasher “Pi Day” exists. March 14th to be exact and high school students that have a connection with a shy girl named Gabriele are being murdered by a mysterious killer. Never mind the principal played by Ari Lehman is unsure on how to help the student body because the pie eating contest on “Pi Day” has been canceled because of the murders. Meanwhile the popular girls can’t believe Gabriele has found a guy and shows up to their popular party where one person’s head explodes from the beer keg… Great inventive kill! The film has its good and bad moments but I got to congratulate Michael E. Cullen II for giving me another obscure holiday horror film. Now I am not sure if the rest of the horror movie watching world is weird like me and will accept this film like this but I say “Bravo!” I give the independent horror film 2 ½ out of 4 stars. Find out more at www.pidaydieday.com .
Zombiefied (DVD) – Finally I was able to sit down and watch the sequel to one of my favorite independent films ever ‘Death Metal Zombies’. No doubt Todd Jason Falcon Cook knew there had to be a sequel but it took him many years! It’s been 13 years since the outbreak of zombies that were reversed to human form after a cassette of a new song from ‘Living Corpse’ was played backwards. But Angel and Tommy still have nightmares and it all happens again as a mysterious person goes to the local metal club and throws in a CD called “Phase II” and all in the club become flesh eaters. Now it is once again up to Angel, Tommy, and friends to stop the zombies. Reverse them to human if possible and if not find out who this mysterious person in a Nixon mask is and how he is able to control the undead. Nowhere near as much fun as the 1995 flick ‘Death Metal Zombies’ but still has some cool zombie effects. Maybe too much time had passed between films, maybe the first just had that something special (chaos perhaps), but this sequel just doesn’t live up to the hilarious fun the original is and was as I give this flick 2 out of 4 stars. You can find out more about the film at www.zombiefiedmovie.com and www.facebook.com/zombiefiedmovie .
B-Documentary (DVD) – Nick Charles for his first film chose to do a documentary about “how to make a film”. In doing that Mr. Charles traveled to meet and interview celebrities Lloyd Kaufman, H.G. Lewis, Bill Johnson, Lisa Gaye, D.J. Calvitto, Patrick Madcox, and Nurse Hatchet. With this Nick Charles gets these fine people to tell stories of “how they got started”, “keys to success”, “how to make a movie”, along with several other subjects that includes “digital vs film”. The movie isn’t so much a documentary as much as a perfect instructional guide for movie fans and filmmakers alike to hear what’s it like to make a movie or act in one. They all have sound advice and varying opinions which makes this film not just a must see but a must own for any horror movie or independent movie fan out there. Nick Charles did an amazing job first time out in the filmmaking world and now has my attention in what he does next. I personally wish him good luck. I give this wonderful project 4 out of 4 stars and more about it and where to purchase it can be found at www.officialdungeonfilms.com .
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Don’t forget you can also hear Kyle Poling and me talking about horror flicks on a weekly basis on the Bloodbaths and Boomsticks podcast at: www.bloodbathspodcast.blogspot.com/
Plus you can always go to the greatest T-shirt place online or if you are in Texas visit the store of “Fast Custom Shirts” where T-shirt Joe is the only place you should purchase your horror T-shirts: Go to www.fastcustomshirts.com for details.
Next up, you can come by the vendor table I will be at for a book, shirt, or a movie at Cinema Wasteland April 1, 2, 3rd, 2016 in Strongsville, Ohio (for details: www.cinemawasteland.com) .