26 Aug 2012

Week 67: Tenebrae

Alternate Titles : Tenebre, Unsane, Shadow, Sotto Gli Occhi dell'Assassino
Year: 1982
Reviews / Author Comments due: 01/09/2012
DPP Status: Successfully prosecuted 
BBFC Status: Passed uncut in 2011 
Wikipedia: LINK

Feel free to use the comments section of this post to add your own reviews and thoughts about this movie.

25 Aug 2012

SS Experiment Love Camp - Will's Review

Our last Nazi Nasty! Horray! And this one isn't even that bad (by the, admittedly low, standard set by the others anyway).

The basic premise is the same as in all of these things; female POWs are kept at a special camp where they will act as whores to the third reich, and nasty experiments shall be run on them.

This time though, the women are German political prisoner (rather than Jewish women as is the norm) and are warranted slightly better treatment - they are rewarded for complicity, and (although they have no choice and therefor this is still rape) the sexual encounters are much gentler than we are used to, and do not at least look like violent assaults.

Likewise the experiments are (mostly) related to sex, with the exception of a strange electric chair bit, a few who are stuffed into the incinerator unconscious, rather than dead, and experimental overy transplants, which universally end in death.

There's also a semblance of a story this time; the colonel who runs the camp is unable to 'preform' because his testicles were bitten off (!) and he is using the sex-based experiments to find a suitable donor for testicle transplant surgery.

For all that though, this is still a film we've seen several times before these last 66 weeks, albeit a watered down version, so I really don't have much else to say, so I'll leave you with a question:
What indeed...

Body Count: 23
Boob Count: 18 Pairs 

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SS Experiment Love Camp - Lisa's Review

*** SPOILERS ***

So ANOTHER Nazi Sexploitation movie *YAWN*.  The last one I am assured, thank gawd!

What to say?  This movie is a big steaming pile of poo.  It probably didn't help that I had to watch it on a faulty laptop which made a constant loud whirring noise the entire time, but I don't think the comfort of a lounge on the sofa and my DVD player would have made much difference. 

Soooo, a storyline?  Hmmmm lots of attractive German females POW's who are used in experiments, mostly sexual, in order to spawn the perfect Arian race.  There are non sexual experiments but they seem to be reserved for the less attractive of the women and seem to have no place in the movie at all.  Everything seems to have a very 'tame' nature to it.  I know that sounds like an odd thing to say and I'm not saying I have a penchant for watching horrid human experiments or rapes, but if you're going to do this kind of movie, surely the aim is to shock, disgust, infuriate?   This movie is neither strong enough nor clever enough to evoke any kind of emotion, other than perhaps mild amusement and boredom.

 The rapes for example (as that's what they were) seemed to be something the women enjoyed.  There was no need for violence or restraint as would have been the case in this situation.   I neglected to say that it is a woman in charge of the experiments (reminiscent of The Beast in Heat), but the acting is so poor and the dubbing is so bad, there was no way you could take her seriously.

While i'm on the subject of not taking something seriously, can I point out that another of the reasons the experiments are being carried out were to find a 'replacement pair of testicles' for a colonel who lost his by way of a rather vicious prostitute.  He wants to find the perfect pair of balls to replace what he's missing.  Step forward Helmut, a patriotic German willing to do anything for his country.  I don't think he quite knew what he would be sacrificing however.

His balls are indeed removed in a shoddy looking operation and are left in a dish in all their glory, just for our amusement.  The most amusing thing of all however, is that Helmut has no idea his bits have been removed until he tries to have sex with a prisoner he is having a relationship with.   On discovery that he has been castrated, he rushes to his superior and demands to know "What have you been doing with my balls?"... I kid you not!  This is a serious line of dialogue!

I'm not really sure what else I can say about this movie as I my previous paragraph left you with an idea as to the 'quality' of this movie.  I thought it sucked.  It was weak and didn't achieve what it set out to.  I don't think it would have even titillated the perverts amongst the viewers as it was so mild, not even up to soft porn standards.   I should have known straight away to be honest.  An early scene in the movie where the female prisoners are ordered to shower as they stink should also give an idea as to the quality we should expect.  They all stand around giggling and moaning with pleasure as the camera zooms in on their 'that really needs a waxing/shaving' bits.  I mean seriously?? If all I can think about is how badly these women need to tend to their gardens, what hope does the movie have?

I won't stick an 'avoid' on this weeks movie, but its only just escaped.  Congratulations 'What have you been doing with my balls' line.  A chuckle saved you.

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22 Aug 2012

Revenge of The Boogeyman - Lisa's Review

So finally we review the long awaited 'Revenge of The Boogeyman'... well I hope none of you were waiting with baited breath...I highly doubt it to your credit.  Much sympathy should be forthcoming for myself and Will for having to sit through this travesty.  If it wasn't enough to have to sit through The Boogeyman, we were subjected to pretty much sitting through a re-hash of the same movie by way of flashbacks.

For this movie we follow Lacey from the original as she visits a friend in the city.  She relives the events of the first movie when she is convinced to commit her experiences to celluloid.  Please gawd nooooooooooooo.  We don't need to sit through any more 'Boogeymen' thank you very much (NB:  There is another one.... Redux... we shall be visiting that in our future project after completing The Nasties).  Anyways... I deviate.   As I said, the first half of the movie is basically clips from 'The Boogeyman' with some explanations as to what is going on.  Its effective enough and probably manages to make the previous installment look a little more interesting than it actually was.  There are some odd additions though, like weird sound effects and odd echoing added to voices.  I don't know what exactly the director was trying to achieve, but he failed miserably I'm sure.

When we've done with the flashbacks, we're basically treated to a pile of tosh. A lot of laughable deaths, bad acting and inexplicable situations.  If you don't hear yourself say "But Why....." at least once while waiting the deaths or the lead-up to them, I would be somewhat surprised.

Amongst the deaths are (and before I start, I promise I'm not joking) deaths by electric toothbrush, shaving foam, ice tongs and a car exhaust, which a young woman was completely unable to tear herself away from. It would be hilarious if it weren't so frustratingly awful.  She walks to the back of a car in a garage.  A ladder falls and bangs into her backside, knocking her forwards and as she falls towards the ground at the back of the car, the sudden urge to open her mouth and wrap it around the exhaust pipe on her way down (no pun  intended) emerges.  If that isn't enough to stomach... as the car revs away (by way of an invisible foot) she keeps a hold of the exhaust!!  I mean give it up woman dear!!!  WTF was that all about???

As well as the deaths being... well crap, the aghast expressions on the victims faces before they meet their maker is even worse - a wide-mouthed gawp for about 10 seconds while comtemplating their demise.  Also the lighting goes to pot and there is the reflection of a shard of glass (I neglected to say Lacey carries the original shard from the first movie around with her and a weird butler at her friends house discovers it and steals it) shone in their faces before anything kicks off.  Do they clear off?  Do they hell!!  They stand around looking nonchalent, before we get the 10 second gawp and then the eventual laughable death.

I don't know what more I can say about it really.  I realise this is a bit of a pants review, but the thought of going into detail about basically.... well nothing happening of any consequence was more than I could stomach at the minute. 

The only thing I would pass on to you about this movie, is that I think everyone should avoid it at all costs.   One for Nasties completists only!


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Revenge of the Boogeyman - Will's Review

Before I even get to my thoughts on this movie, I should explain the delay.

Knowing that this movie was also known as "Boogeyman 2" I went right on ahead and got a copy of "Boogeyman 2". Except, when that movie started, the on screen title was "Boogeyman 2: Redux"...

This was enough to make me pause and launch into research mode: it seems that in 2002, Co-Director / co-writer Ulli Lommel went back and filmed some new scenes (of himself - he's also an actor in both versions of this movie) and re-edited "Revenge of the Boogeyman" into a whole new movie, which is available as "Boogeyman 2: Redux" or "Boogeyman 2: The Directors Cut" Which is a bit of a cheek as Bruce Star is the listed director on the original version. To confuse matters further, the original and redux versions both share an IMDB and Wikipedia page, as they are classed as different cuts of the same movie.

For the sake of completeness, we should probably go back and review Redux as part of our next project once we've finished with the DPP list...

Anyway, onto the real "Revenge of The Boogeyman":
I mentioned that Lommel co-wrote/directed this; What is actually meant by that is that of the movie's 80min runtime, he wrote and directed the 31mins that are recycled footage from the first film!

Yes, over a third of this movie is "flashbacks" to the first film; all of those moments are in the first half of the film, and I found it interesting that the first half of this film was not only much better than the second half, but was actually better than the original 'The Boogeyman'.

One small thing though - I don't remember John Carradine farting in the original:
I swear I did not add that sound effect!

Not only is the pacing of original movie benefit from the "cliffs notes" approach, but the surrounding story is reasonably interesting; 6 months after the events of "The Boogeyman", Lacy (the girl from the original) has gone to visit her friend Bonnie in LA; and it just so happens that Bonnies husband, Mickey is a European Film director (Played by  Lommel). It's not long before Lacy is telling her friends what happened 6 months ago - while Bonney and Mickey's butler, Joseph listens in...

There is also a conversation between Joseph and Bonnie's daughter, which has an inexplicable voice-effect added to it, for no reason whatsoever:

Joseph also soon discovers that Lacy still has a piece of the mirror, which she carries around in a box full of charms, talismans, and crystals.

It's not long before Bonnie is throwing a party in Lacy's honour (inviting loads of Hollywood types along as she believes Lacy's story could be made into the movie that will launch Lommel's Mickey's into mainstreem success).  Meanwhile Joseph steals the mirror fragment and chaos ensues.

The Hollywood types are not painted in a remotely flattering light (word is that Lommel objected to the idea of a sequel, and this was his post-modern attack on the Hollywood system) constantly seducing people lower down the 'food chain' or being horrendously tactless to lacy, and it's no shame when they start getting picked off.

Sadly, this is where the film takes a rapid downturn, each death in the new part of the movie is preceded by a weird lighting effect; it goes completely dark, and then a spotlight (supposedly the reflection from the mirror) flashes around the area, usually in the face of the victims - but it is never clear (or rather, it is usually very clear, but entirely inconsistent) whether the characters are aware of the lighting change, or if it is just for our benefit. The victims also stand around looking blank long after things have taken a turn for the strange; one character gets smacked on the ass by a ladder and ends up with a car exhaust in her mouth, but then just crouches there, looking surprised, for a good 30 seconds while the car starts itself!

There also seems to be a strange obsession with keeping the killers identity a secrete even though they have the mirror fragment, which we saw Joseph steal!

An interesting novelty, and half-worth checking out if you haven't seen The Boogyman (or if you haven't seen it for a while), but far FAR from great.

Body Count: 13 (Including 6 of the 8 killings from the original)
Most Memorable Death: Make sure you rush all the way to the back!

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19 Aug 2012

WEEK 66: SS Experiment Love Camp

Alternate Titles : Horreur Nazis, SS Experiment Camp
Year: 1976
Reviews / Author Comments due: 25/08/2012
DPP Status: Successfully prosecuted 
BBFC Status: Passed uncut in 2005
Wikipedia: LINK

Feel free to use the comments section of this post to add your own reviews and thoughts about this movie.

18 Aug 2012

Snuff - Will's Review

After watching Snuff, but while pondering what I could possibly write about it, I happened to read an interview with (Current Doctor Who writer-in-chief) Stephen Moffat, in which he says that "All stories are endings; the rest of the story is just a way to arrive at the ending" - which is true, and sums up nicely why a bad ending can ruin an otherwise fine movie, and why a great ending can elevate an average film.

It's also never been more fitting as I come to review a movie that was sold entirely on it's final scene.

I'll get to that all important final scene in a moment; first, I'll quickly address the rest of the movie.

The rest of the movie had previously enjoyed a (very) limited release as "Slaughter", and follows a Manson-Family style cult, who's female members kill for fun, torture each other for the mildest of infractions, and swear undying allegiance to their leader, Satan (pronounced with the empasis on the second vowel, so it sounds like "sat-anne". Satan want's some rich dude's baby as a sacrifice, and has stationed one of his women to live with him to bear said child; however when rich-dude's (married) lover, an actress, is in town, Satan decides to have her husband killed, in order to pave the way for rich-dud to impregnate her instead.

Every time we see the hippy-chicks on their bikes we are regaled with the first 2 bars of "Born to be Wild" over and over again,

This literally goes on for 2 minutes, and it's not even the only 
time in the film that it's used. 

there's a carnival that uses the same 4 pieces of stock footage on a loop,

"...at hypnotising people"

and the "acting" is, well... this:

It is honestly one of the worst scripted, most incompetently made, and horrendiouslty dubbed movies I have EVER seen. At times it would qualify for a so-bad-it's-good mention, but sadly for every unintentionally hilarious minute, there are 5 that are just plain dull.

Eventually (This technically counts as a spoiler, but given the nature of the film, it really doesn't spoil anything) the actress does fall pregnant, and when she's 7 months gone, one of the cut enters her home and stabs her in her pregnant belly.

That is where the footage from "slaughter" ends. You see, the entire rest of the film really has been an excuse to get to this point - the camera pulls back, and we see the stabbing that we have just witnessed is on a movie set - someone yells "Cut" and the "dead" actress walks away, along with the "hippy" who stabbed her.

"It was all a movie" is right up there with "It was all a dream" when it comes to crappy ways to end a story - and even the shittiest film deserves to be told all the way through. But no. "Slaughter" lost it's ending to become this new abomination "Snuff" and with the fourth wall broken, the new scene is tacked on.

The marketing at the time of film's release was engineered to imply that, at the end of the film, a crew member is killed, for real, on tape. The film's tagline boasted that it was a film "that could only be made in South America; where life is cheap!", feminist groups picketed the movie (although the rumour is that, at least to start with, they were paid to do so by the distributor/producer, Allan Shackleton), and Shackleton himself refused to be drawn on the validity of the final scene, claiming that "If it is real I'd be a fool to admit it. If it isn't real, I'd be a fool to admit it"

You would have though that, having gone to so much effort, the film makers would have pulled out all the stops to make the "snuff" portion of the film realistic.

They did not.

It is vertually impossible to believe that anyone could watch the final scene of this movie with a remotliy critical mind and believe for even one second that it is anything more that a (rather poory staged) effect piece; Herschell Gordon Lewis has staged more convincing gore-scenes!

At one point the victims finger is cut off, BUT YOU CAN PLAINLY SEE IT CURLED UNDER HER HAND!!!

Later, while her (obviously fake) body is being cut into - the blood is gone... and the finger is back!!!

In summery - Shackleton took an already shitty movie... an managed to ruin it!

Body Count: 13
Boob Count: 6 Pairs
Most memorable death: The fake snuff one - and that was shit!

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Snuff - Lisa's Review

I'm not going to beat about the bush this week.  This movie is monumentally awful!!!  I usually try to come up with a positive about our movies, but this week, I'm afraid I am struggling in a big way.  The best thing about this movie is the publicity campaign which was the reason so many poor sods ended up watching it.  The possibility of viewing an actual snuff movie was obviously a big pull.  Unfortunately for them, this was a previously released and unsuccessful Argentinian movie called 'Slaughter', which the director took and made changes to (included an additional ending supposed to be a piece of snuff) and they were to be bitterly disappointed.

The movie doesn't tie together well at all.  Whats wrong with it I hear you ask?  Where do I start?  The dubbing is laughable - lips don't move at the same time as people speak, voices don't match characters, one of our main characters voices sounds like its coming through a speaker....  Then there's the editing.  Scenes end and cut away abruptly and you're left thinking  WTF?.... well I suppose I was thinking that most of the time anyway.  There are copious continuity errors that would keep error spotting nerds entertained for hours on end.  Every character in the movie is unlikable, horrid and you want to see die (a bunch of greasy, druggie hippy females who enjoy torturing each other and getting their norks out and their Manson-inspired leader Saataan.. Hmmmm great name).

The 1 main scene the movie seems to base all its advertising on, is in the last few minutes of the movie and it sooooo isn't worth sitting through the other 80 minutes just to get there.  The special effects are poor and I'm sat there spotting continuity errors rather than watching whats going on.  Also it bears no relation to what is going on in the rest of the movie, so there is no tying up and you're left wondering where the story (well, loosely speaking) went.

This is a movie I would definately never recommend to anyone, in fact I would go out of my way to tell people to avoid this one.   Wish someone would create a new 'nasties' list with something worth getting bent out of shape about.  At least with movies that contain scenes I struggle to watch, you can see how they warranted a place on the list, but with banal crap like this, its way beyond disappointing.


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13 Aug 2012

WEEK 65: Snuff

Alternate Titles : The Slaughter, American Cannibale, Big Snuff
Year: 1976
Reviews / Author Comments due: 18/08/2012
DPP Status: Successfully prosecuted 
BBFC Status: Passed uncut in 2003
Wikipedia: LINK
DVD: US Import

Feel free to use the comments section of this post to add your own reviews and thoughts about this movie.

12 Aug 2012

The Slayer - Will's Review

The movie opens with a kill!

Awesome! Straight to the action!  Except... No; No, it was a dream. It turns out that if there's one thing this movie can not be accused of, it's 'cutting straight to the action'

The pacing is terrible - the small cast (four main cast, and I believe only one other person in the entire movie) and isolated location mean that there is a LOT of time to kill. Thankfully the acting was passable, or the length of time we had to spend in the group's company would have been unbearable! That said, one thing I did like about the group is that they were all adults, not teens, which is rare.

The plot (such as it is) revolves around a surrealist painter (Kay) who isn't doing so well in the mental health department, her husband decides to take her for a break, along with her brother and his wife, to a borrowed house on an otherwise uninhabited island, with no means of contacting the outside world.

This variant on the 'isolated cabin' isn't the only thematic horror stalwart on display though; when people do (eventually) start dying, Kay becomes convinced that her dreams are to blame, and makes an effort to stay awake (this is before NOES by the way).

The deaths (5 if you count the one in the opening dream) are all fairly well executed (although one wouldn't work AT ALL as depicted), and the lighting is atmospheric. Really, with a better ending and a few more characters to improve the pacing, this could have been a fairly good movie.

The Slayer (the creature that haunts Kay's dreams) is never actually glimpsed during the killings, and when it is seen, it is only by Kay - it's possible that Kay herself may be directly responsible for the deaths, which would have been a great ending - that the heroin was in-fact the killer but didn't know it!

Unfortunately, that isn't the ending we get.

Some people would argue that what follows (highlight the white strips to read it) is a big spoiler, as it's basically the end of the movie. I however, feel that it is an overused device, and one that should be stated as the tag-line of every movie that uses it, so that I would know not to bother with that movie. (that said, it virtually was the tagline - I read the description on the box and more-or-less guessed how the film would end).

The entire movie was Kay's dream.  

I. Hate. "it was all a dream" endings!!! They are lazy, usually (as here) serve oh to save the writer from coming up with a real ending, and they waste the viewers time; we spent 90mins of our lives watching something that didn't happen (even within the fictional universe of the movie) Pah!

The is a little more to the ending than that - a little extra that I guess is supposed to be some kind of 'twist' - but it doesn't work.

Body Count: 5
Boob Count: 1 pair
Most Memorable Death: Hook Line and stinker.

Please use the comments bellow only to comment on this post - to write your own review, please comment on the main post for this movie.

11 Aug 2012

The Slayer - Lisa's Review

*** SPOILERS ***

A familiar feel to this weeks movie.... A woman has recurring dreams, which start to appear to come true and the horrid series of events can only continue while she sleeps.  If she stays awake, everyone will be fine... Hmmm sound familiar?  From a little reading however, it seems doubtful Wes Craven found his inspiration for 'A Nightmare on Elm Street' from this little movie, although the premis is so eerily similar.

Thankfully in this movie, we aren't following a group of teenagers for a change, but instead a young woman (Kay) who obviously has some mental issues (she's the one with the dreams), her husband, her brother and his wife.  They go to an island as a means of Kay getting away from things for a while, as they become increasingly worried when she starts to paint everything she see's in dreams and becomes obsessed with her dreams.  However, when they get there it becomes clear very quickly that the surrounding and buildings are the same as those which appear in Kays dreams and in her paintings.   She becomes more and more unstable and hysterical.

As expected, people start to die and when Kays sister-in-law starts to feel there may be some truth to what Kay has been saying, she is quickly reprimanded by Kays brother.  It has been made very clear from the off that Kay has issues.  Her brother is also shown to be not the most supportive of siblings, pointing out how much of a fruit loop she is and how she supposedly killed a kitten she was given as a present one christmas as a child.

So we've off'd Kays husband by way of a dropped trap door... which so wouldn't have worked that way (I hate it when its not believable), but he does die convincingly so kudos for that.  The brother follows with a fishing hook to the face, being pulled out to see.  The sister-in-law is impaled by a pitchfork while investigating the rather eerie boat-house looking for her husband.  Good death there, again very believable.

We are left awaiting the ending and there is a twist.  I won't spoil it for anyone who hasn't seen it, but it was pretty obvious for the most part.  One aspect was a bit confusing and unexpected, but the idea was pretty run of the mill.

So, this movie is quite similar to 'A Nightmare on Elm Street' in principal, but it didn't hold my interest in the same way.  The movie is very well shot and looks fantastic in places.  The locations are delightfully eerie.  The lighting is great.  Even the acting here isn't too bad (although our lead actress does over-egg the pudding in places), one thing cannot be got away from however... it is sooooooo slow.  The pacing is terrible.  I hate it when a movie takes 5 minutes to portray something that should have been over in 30 seconds.  Why should a walk across a room take 2 minutes?  It just takes too long to get anywhere.  I am not the worlds most patient person so a slow movie is torture to me, unless there's a strong storyline, but here its too obvious to attempt suspense.

The eventual reveal of 'The Slayer' is a bit of an anticlimax too.  The make-up isn't too bad, I just didn't feel freaked out enough... maybe I've been watching too many of these.

In conclusion, you could do much worse than watch this movie.  Its not bad, but its not fantastic either, but a lot of that will be down to my hatred of slow scenes and uneven pacing, maybe another reviewer would be more positive.

I doubt you will see anything here you haven't seen before.

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5 Aug 2012

WEEK 64: The Slayer

Alternate Titles : Nightmare Island
Year: 1981
Reviews / Author Comments due: 11/08/2012
DPP Status: Removed from list April 1985
Wikipedia: LINK

Feel free to use the comments section of this post to add your own reviews and thoughts about this movie.