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!
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.
Werewolf of Ohio* (1998, dir. Matt Brassfield)- When I was in high school, some friends and I made a short slasher movie called Deth Killr 42. This is sort of like that, only stretched out to 42 minutes (which I would not normally count toward the Challenge, but I had no idea it was that short when I bought the DVD, so I’m counting it, dammit!) and much less coherent. A guy wearing a plaid shirt and a werewolf mask appears every so often and the screen goes black just before he attacks people, then the picture fades back in and you look at the dead people. Meanwhile, a guy who lost his sister to the werewolf teams up with a werewolf hunter and his friend who owns a VHS camcorder to track down the beast and videotape it. The entire movie is made up of a patchwork of short shots that fade in and out of black every 10-30 seconds with occasional longer scenes, and TONS of music that would cost any studio film a small fortune to license. This one has some moments of incompetent hilarity, but they’re few and far between– this one feels a lot longer than its 42 minutes.
Death Metal Zombies* (1995, dir. Todd Jason Cook)- This was also shot on VHS camcorder, but it looks much, much better than Werewolf of Ohio and the pacing is considerably better, so even though it runs nearly twice as long it breezes by. Metalhead Brad wins a radio contest where the prize is an exclusive tape by the band Living Corpse with an exclusive song available nowhere else. When he plays the tape, he and his friends become shambling murderers (“zombies” seems a little generous) who set out to expand the ranks of the living dead and please their master Shengar, Lord of the Undead (who is just a dude in a skull shirt). Brad’s girlfriend Angel teams up with Brad’s friend Tommy to find the tape, play it backwards, and send Shengar back to the underworld. This is shockingly competent for a SOV feature, flying by at 82 minutes and packed with decent gore effects and tons of period metal, most of which was furnished by Relapse records. Really fun and worth digging up!
Gorgasm* (1990, dir. Hugh Gallagher)- Hugh Gallagher’s “Gore trilogy” kicks off with this nasty bit of business about an S&M hooker named Tara who takes out ads in underground Xeroxed zines and offers her clients “The Ultimate Climax.” Considering this costs the client all the money they have in the world, we can assume they know they’re not going to survive the experience. Gallagher plays off of contemporary mainstream ideas of S&M with his characters– in other words, anyone who’s not already into it is absolutely terrified of it. The main plot is somewhat similar to films such as Hardcore or 8MM, where a normal guy descends into a grimy underworld of weird sex and people getting murdered with garage door openers. Despite being technically fairly well made, there’s not much to separateGorgasm from other SOV horror films of the era.
Gorotica (1993, dir. Hugh Gallagher)- Opening with a dedication to the memory of Anthony Perkins, Gorotica is the real centerpiece of Gallagher’s “Gore trilogy.” Bleak, nasty, and blackly funny, this is pretty much what I expected Nekromantik to be before I actually saw that film and realized it was a comedy. In Gorotica, a jewel thief named Max swallows a huge diamond that he and his partner Neil had been contracted to acquire for a third party; unfortunately, he is then shot by a cop who happens to catch them in an alley. Neil drives to a cemetery to figure out what to do when he realizes Max is dead. The car is spotted by Carrie (Ghetty Chasun, truly the unsung scream queen of the SOV movement), a necrophiliac out digging up a reasonably fresh body. She offers Neil a hideout in exchange for “taking care” of Max. While Neil tries to arrange a drop-off for the diamond, Carrie enjoys Max’s company. Maybe it’s just the fact that my copy is obviously a copy of a copy of a copy, but the makeup on Max is pretty effective, giving the necrophilia scenes a queasy sense of reality that Nekromantik may have had if its sex scenes a) weren’t shot like Red Shoe Diaries and b) weren’t scored with hilarious Ferrante & Teicher-style epic piano ballads. The film ends with a jaw-droppingly offensive twist that makes that Anthony Perkins dedication even more ridiculous. Definitely not for everybody, but if you’re looking for sick-making late 80s SOV horror, you’ll probably want to seek this out.
Gore Whore* (1994, dir. Hugh Gallagher)- Gallagher ends his “Gore” trilogy with this film, “Dedicated to Lorena Bobbitt.” The video quality on my copy of this film is much better thanGorotica, but mostly it just shows up how goofy some of the effects look. The severed penises still look pretty good, though. Detective Chase Barr (Brady DeBussey) is hired by research scientist Dr. Whitman (Paul Woodard) to track down Whitman’s female assistant Dawn (Audrey Street), who has disappeared with some important (and valuable) information. Barr soon discovers that Dawn was not exactly Whitman’s assistant– Whitman used her as a guinea pig in his experiments, and she’s actually a reanimated corpse who must consume human blood to survive. Despite the penile trauma dealt out during the course of Dawn’s reign of terror, this is probably the most accessible of Gallagher’s “Gore” films, with the makeup and effects ranging from pretty awful to surprisingly effective/disgusting. With all the reissues of late 80s/early 90s SOV films happening lately, hopefully someone will be able to track Gallagher down and give his films another shot; if nothing else, they’re an interesting time capsule of the period, but they also manage to be morbidly entertaining in a fairly unique way.
Running totals for October:
First-time views for October: 15
Total views for October: 17