I should note that I will be dealing heavily in spoilers for some of these movies, but in general those are movies I would absolutely not recommend another human being actually watch. Still, fair warning. Also, films denoted with an asterisk are first-time watches. Films denoted with TWO asterisks before the title are available on Netflix Instant! Also, it should be noted that some of these trailers can sometimes be NSFW.
My request is simple: For every movie I watch, I am asking for a small donation. As I mentioned above, I watched 90 movies last October. This year I will probably not quite hit that number, but I will still try to watch as many films as I can. Assuming I hit more around 50-60 films, a donation of just 10 cents per movie would be a total donation of $5 or $6. For the price of a bargain matinee, you could help out needy pug dogs! Even if you just pledged 5 cents or a penny per movie, every cent will go to help out pugs who need homes and medical care. You could alternately make a straightforward donation of whatever amount you wish if you prefer. Additionally, if you would like, I will take requests to watch excruciatingly bad movies and write them up in my reviews for extra pledges! Every little bit helps and many hands make for light work. Together, we can make a big difference for some sweet, weird-lookin’ little dogs who need our help! This year, I’ve chosen a different pug rescue: Curly Tail Pug Rescue, based out of New York City.
My friend Paul and I drove out to the Cinema Wasteland convention on Friday, October 5th and returned on Sunday, October 7th. I caught several film screenings there, including all those listed below as well as Ilsa the Tigress of Siberia, Macon County Line and Chesty Anderson U.S. Navy. It was a lot of fun, and I’m hoping to go to the April show, where I will totally have Sergio Martino sign my Torso Blu-ray (fingers crossed)!
Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers* (1988, dir. Fred Olen Ray)- A hardboiled private eye provides narration for the story of a group of hookers on a chainsaw murder spree in Los Angeles. This is about as good as it gets from Fred Olen Ray, with some genuinely funny dialogue and plenty of what you’d expect from a movie called Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers. Michelle Bauer and Linnea Quigley star, and the whole thing’s over in 75 minutes. If you’re looking for a way into Fred Olen Ray’s filmography for some reason, this would be a good place to start! Not that I would necessarily recommend anyone head down that particular rabbit hole…
Sexquatch* (2012, dir. Chris Seaver)- This is sort of like a bunch of 8-year-olds found an old “Letters to Penthouse” magazine and read all the dirty parts in front of a camera for an hour, and also there’s a guy dressed in a bigfoot suit. The filmmakers of Warlock Home Video have clearly been thoroughly schooled in their Troma, and it shows. There’s barely a line of dialogue in this film that isn’t a filthy joke or loaded with inventive profanity, but there’s also not a bared breast anywhere to be found on-screen. Sexquatch is way too dumb to be offensive, and too infantile to get mad about. The Wasteland crowd seemed to enjoy the show, although a few of the jokes had even these folks groaning in disgust. Mission accomplished?
**The Food of the Gods (1976, dir. Bert I. Gordon)- Marjoe Gortner plays a pro football player out for a weekend of hunting and relaxing on a remote island when he gets mixed up with giant insects and, worst of all, rats. Bert I. Gordon may be best remembered for his movies featuring giant animals (or humans), and The Food of the Gods is one of his best. Gordon uses trick photography, miniatures and big animal models to great effect in conveying an attack by giant rats and other animals (the giant wasp is not quite as successful). Watching this one as a kid, I thought it was pretty scary, but as an adult the thing that bugs me most is whether or not they killed a few hundred rats during the making of the movie. At the very least they shot a bunch of them with paintball guns or something; in any case, if you’re bothered by animals possibly getting hurt or killed this is definitely one to avoid, unless you make a special exception for rats.
Tonight You Die* (2010?, dir. Jim Roberts)- After an extremely long and super enthusiastic introduction by some guy who really, really loved this movie (we got in to the screening room after he started talking, so I’m afraid I don’t know who it was), this no-budget shot-on-video horror film started up with the promise that it would restore the audience’s faith in the future of horror films. That guy also had a tallboy in one hand and obviously had a pretty good start on it, though, so I figured it would best to take anything he said with a pound of salt, which was definitely the right approach. This is apparently Jim Roberts’s second film, and it’s basically a competently assembled gore film that is definitely better than the vast majority of films answering to that description, but wasn’t quite the life-changer its introduction suggested. The film has some comedic elements that are very spotty, some of them hit and others fall seriously flat. The best part of the production by far is the practical blood and gore effects, virtually all of which are pretty spectacular for such a low-budget production.
The Infliction* (2012, dir. Matthan Harris)- Folks, I believe this film is the reason God sent me to Cinema Wasteland. The Infliction is an almost unbelievably bizarre serial killer horror film, so removed from anything resembling reality that it feels like Tommy Wiseau must have been a script consultant. For the first hour or so, The Infliction is just sort of bad, but then something happens and the film takes a hard turn into “so bad it’s like it was made BY ALIENS” territory. The last half-hour or so of the movie features two different scenes and bits of dialogue that made me laugh so hard I was crying– I don’t necessarily think writer/director/producer/star/etc. Matthan Harris meant for this to happen, but he had the Wasteland audience rolling in the aisles. As an elaborate performance art satire on vanity film projects, The Infliction is genius; as anything else, it’s just jaw-droppingly weird. In other words, it does for serial killer movies what The Room does for all other movies. Hilarious and inexplicable, The Infliction is a must-see, because you would never believe that it exists otherwise.
Necromancy* (1972, dir. Bert I. Gordon)- Gordon snagged Orson Welles for this mostly low-key horror film in which young married couple Lori and Frank Brandon (Pamela Franklin and Michael Ontkean) move to the strange small town of Lilith after losing their baby. Frank gets a job working for the mysterious Mr. Cato (Orson Welles), who literally owns the town and runs the toy factory where everyone works. Lori is unsettled by the strange actions of the townsfolk, but Frank thinks it’s all in her head and is just glad to have a high-paying job. As things get weirder, Lori discovers the truth behind Lilith and Mr. Cato, but by then it may be too late for her. There are some creepy moments in Necromancy, but there is also a lot of goofy, dated dialogue, and the ending suggests Gordon had painted himself into a corner with no idea what to do to actually end the movie. Still, as a time capsule of post-Rosemary’s Baby/pre-Exorcist satanic horror, Necromancy is worth a look.
Nothin’! Drove home from Wasteland and basically went to bed at around 6:30 p.m. Whew!
Running totals for October:
First-time views for October: 11
Total views for October: 12