Monday, November 7, 2022

"Even the Squirrels Are Scarce" - Invasion from Inner Earth (1974) - Film #241

We must again turn to the works of Wisconsin's Bill Rebane to discuss Invasion from Inner Earth (1974) aka They, another of the master's minimalist science fiction films. Like Mr. Rebane's later The Alpha Incident (1977), Invasion from Inner Earth is a tense exploration of a small group of isolated characters.

Some of your universe's critics fail to appreciate Mr. Rebane's work. For example, reviewer uljf writes, "Every cliche in the book is used, and the low budget assures terrible special effects. Bad all around." Reviewer Patchbunny writes, "The movie is a slogging morass of nonacting that has no real plot, coherence, or semblance of intelligence." And reviewer udar55 writes, "Even if this has a germ of a good idea, the execution is so terrible that nothing can be forgiven."

Of course, these reviewers do not understand the wonders of minimalist filmmaking. Read on for a true appreciation of Invasion from Inner Earth...

Monday, October 24, 2022

“You Don’t Have to Wear a Loincloth or Beat a Tom-Tom to be Primitive” - Devils of Darkness (1965) - Film #240

It is time to travel to 1965 France for the British vampire film Devils of Darkness, a late-career film directed by Lance Comfort, who had been directing British films since 1942 (and who directed a non-vampire film named Daughter of Darkness in 1948).

Of course, many of your universe's critics fail to appreciate, apparently, non-Hammer vampire films from the 1960s. Reviewer bjon1452 writes, “I'm at a loss as to how the actors were able to go through with this film with straight faces.” Reviewer pninson writes, “It's not exactly excruciating to sit through, but it's one of those films that makes you feel you could be doing something better with your time.” And reviewer The_Void writes, “There's far, far too much talking and none of the horror elements are even bordering on being frightening, or even interesting.”

Read on for the truth about Devils of Darkness...

Monday, October 10, 2022

"Be With It, For It" - She Freak (1967) - Film #239

It is time to return to the 1960s and examine 1967's carnival drama She-Freak, produced by celebrated showman David F. Friedman and directed by Byron Mabe. In addition to being an unofficial remake of Tod Browning's Freaks (1932), the film is also an educational exploration of the traveling carnival lifestyle.

Of course, some of your universe's critics are not enamored with She Freak. For example, reviewer Sarasate writes, "This film has absolutely nothing to recommend it. Bad acting, an even worse script, poor cinematography ... you name it, it all flops." Reviewer BaronBl00d writes, "There are some films that are bad, and there is this film which is BAD!" And reviewer firedan-2 writes, "Totally stupid. Awful writing, thinner-than-cardboard characters, UGLY photography/editing, no plot, painful acting, STUPID."

Read on for the truth about She Freak...

Monday, September 26, 2022

“I Want to Be More to Him than a Helper” - Night of the Bloody Transplant (1970) - Film #238

It is time to visit the bustling city of Flint, Michigan to witness 1970's regional horror film Night of the Bloody Transplant (not to be confused with the previous year's Night of Bloody Horror). Combining a surgical thriller with a protoslasher, the film is a powerful statement about life, death, and the things people will do to choose one over the other (usually, though not always, life over death).

Some of your universe's critics are confused about Night of the Bloody Transplant. For example, reviewer ddk999 writes, "Somehow, even at 71 minutes run time- with several scenes clearly padded with 'shooting the rodeo' footage- it still seemed endless." Reviewer Angry Ghost Kid writes, "This one was just bad. From the flat lighting and scenery, to the amateur acting, to the bad writing, to the scenes that go on way too long in clubs." And reviewer Stefano Monteforte writes, "murky lighting ruins some of it and none of it is any good, anyway."

Read on for the truth about the groundbreaking Night of the Bloody Transplant...

Monday, September 12, 2022

“I Plan on Eliminating the Middleman” - The Halfway House (2005) - Film #237

As a change of pace, let us discuss a movie from 2005 -- the light-hearted Lovecraftian exploitation film The Halfway House, directed by special effects veteran Kenneth J. Hall (who also directed the classic Evil Spawn from 1987 and Linnea Quigley's Horror Workout from 1990). Enhanced with practical monster effects and copious nudity, this monster movie is an effective throwback to the esthetics of the 1980s.

Unfortunately, not all your universe's critics appreciate The Halfway House. For example, reviewer The_Dead_See writes, "What I got instead was a horrendously boring screenplay, with very little in the way of either horror or humour. If you think you're going to get any gore in this release, think again." Reviewer Gary-P-Heath writes, "I have seen some pretty poor movies in my time, but this takes the biscuit, it is truly terrible ... the plot is dreadful, the acting is diabolical, the monster is laughable, everything about The Halfway House is awful !!!" And reviewer PartridgeFeatherz writes, "It is so bad. Bad beyond words, friends."

It should go without saying that these reviews miss the mark to an almost unbelievable extent. Read on for the truth about the entertaining monster movie The Halfway House...

Monday, August 29, 2022

“Where the Hell Is My Head?” - Night of Bloody Horror (1969) - Film #236

Night of Bloody Horror (1969) is the first film directed by The Night of the Strangler (1972) auteur Joy N. Houck Jr. Unlike that Mickey Dolenz vehicle, Night of Bloody Horror is a vehicle for a young Gerald McRaney. Like that film, however, it is an incisive portrait of a disturbed individual trapped in circumstances out of their control. It also includes axe and cleaver murders as well as desiccated corpses.

Despite these qualities, some of your universe's critics are somewhat misguided about Night of Bloody Horror. For example, reviewer nogodnomasters writes, "Sound is horrible. Acting is pathetic. Not recommended even for camp value." Reviewer soulexpress writes, "The film is quite tedious between murder scenes. And the murders themselves don't really show a lot. Fans of blood and gore will likely be disappointed." And reviewer grybop writes, "There is almost no suspense, in fact waiting to see if the next scene is worse than the one you are watching is far more suspenseful."
Are these reviewers as misguided as a shirtless Gerald McRaney? Read on for the answers...

Monday, August 15, 2022

“One of Those Church-Going Gigolos” - Savage Lagoon (1999) - Film #235

How frequently have you asked yourself, "I would like to see a combination of Zombie Lake (1981) and a Hallmark romance movie, only without any zombies"? Look no further than 1999's Savage Lagoon (released in the U.S. in 2007), known less exploitatively as Bohemian Moon. 

Many of your universe's critics have not reviewed Savage Lagoon, so for once they have little disparaging to say. However, there are exceptions. Reviewer godzillaismylife writes, "This may be the worst piece of garbage i have ever lay eyes on." Reviewer raulgomez21, in a mostly positive review, writes, "some of the Actors could use some Acting classes." And reviewer bandsaboutmovie writes, "This movie feels like walking through a lake and your feet get caught in mud and you struggle to walk."

Of course, these reviewers miss the point of the romantic Savage Moon. Read on for a more balanced (and correct) appreciation...

Monday, August 1, 2022

"We Gotta Stop Booking These Monster Movies" - Meatcleaver Massacre (1977) - Film #235

The late 1970s represent a cusp in terms of the horror movies being made and released, as the protoslasher exemplified by films such as The Severed Arm (1972) gave way to fully realized slasher films exemplified by Halloween (1978). One of the finest supernatural protoslashers is 1977's Meatcleaver Massacre, aka Hollywood Meat Cleaver Massacre (not to mention dozens of other titles). Let us discuss this near-masterpiece of 1970s terror.

Of course, some of your universe's critics are blind to the charms of Meatcleaver Massacre, some for no other reason than there are no meat cleavers in the film. For example, reviewer mhorg2018 writes, "After watching this trash, and wondering where the meatcleaver comes into play, HINT: It doesn't." Reviewer Bunuel76 writes, "Everything about the film is ugly: from the the utterly dreary look and the messy pseudo-surreal nightmares preceding the spirit's retribution..." And reviewer colaboy7 writes, "why oh why is this film called 'the meat cleaver massacre' when there is absolutely no meat cleaver used in this film?? The plot is stupid, the FX are stupid, the acting is stupid. The whole film is stupid. Avoid!"

Read on for the truth about Meatcleaver Massacre...

Monday, July 18, 2022

“Some Vacation! Boring, Boring Boring!” - The Brides Wore Blood (1972) - Film #234

It is time to return to Florida for the regional vampire film The Brides Wore Blood (1972), the final film of director Robert Favorite, who had previously directed the exploitation films Riverboat Mama (1969) and Indian Raid, Indian Made (also 1969).

Some of your universe's critics fail to appreciate Mr. Favorite's masterpiece. For example, reviewer writes, "For God's sake, don't watch this unless you can spare a few brain cells or have a twelve pack that needs to be drunk in about an hour and fifteen minutes." Reviewer cherry writes, "It was steadily going downhill from the start but it REALLY takes a turn in the second half when the writers just threw in everything but the kitchen sink and hoped it would pan out. It didn't." And reviewer Kurt M. Criscione writes, "What a slog.... so slow and boring... great title and good premise and just crap..."

These reviews must be corrected immediately. Please read on for the truth about The Brides Wore Blood...

Monday, July 4, 2022

"Some Wires Must Have Moved Around" - Dead Dudes in the House (1989) - Film #233

It is time to discuss the notoriously retitled Dead Dudes in the House (1989), also known by the other titles The Dead Come Home and The House on Tombstone Hill. James Riffel's supernatural slasher movie would be a classic by any name, and it seems to me the most widely known title, Dead Dudes in the House, is not as misleading as some would have you believe, as the film does in fact contain dead dudes in a house. (They simply aren't the dudes who appear on Troma's poster advertising the film.)

Although this film is surprisingly well regarded in your universe, as it should be, some critics are oddly, and mistakenly, unenthusiastic. For example, reviewer Inque writes, "Long story short, this is one godawful film." Reviewer movieman_kev writes, "I don't care if someone spent all his money, or shed all his blood to make a film. If said film is a turd. I'll call it a turd. This isn't a total awful film, but it's damn near close to it." And reviewer udar55 writes, "How did director James Riffell convince so many people to finance and work hard on something so poorly thought out? I mean, some of the staging and early dialog is so awkward and bad."

Read on for a full appreciation of Dead Dudes in the House...

Monday, June 20, 2022

"Poached Salmon...And Me!" - Mausoleum (1983) - Film #232

Let us turn to 1983's Mausoleum, written by Robert Barich and directed by Michael Dugan, two filmmakers who inexplicably never made another horror film. Among its other delights, Mausoleum stars a wonderful trio of acting pros: Bobbie Bresee, Marjoe Gortner, and La Wanda Page.

Some of your universe's critics belong in a mausoleum, I must say, because they fail to appreciate this film. For example, reviewer Zorin-2 writes, "The film turned out to be a total waste of time. The story was all right, but the film was made poorly, with poor performances and sets." Reviewer Huntress-2 (perhaps a sibling of Zorin-2) writes, "The "demon" make-up was the worst I've ever seen and the acting was just pathetic. This movie should pride itself on being one of the worst films out there." And reviewer dbborroughs writes, "One of the truly awful horror films ever made."

Don't believe these critics. Read on for the truth about Mausoleum...

Monday, June 6, 2022

“Everything Has to End Sometime…Or Another” - Legacy of Blood (1978) - Film #231

We return to the wonderful world of Andy Milligan with Legacy of Blood (1978), a remake of one of his early hits, The Ghastly Ones (1968).

The depth of your universe's critics' understandings of Andy Milligan's films will never fail to surprise me. For example, reviewer kdreynoldsno1 writes dismissively, "The script totally stinks." Reviewer jacobjohntaylor1 writes more dismissively, "This horror movie is just awful. It is not scary. It has an awful acting. It also has an awful story line. It just awful. It has an awful ending." And reviewer Coffee_in_the_Clink writes, "It drags along at a tedious pace and there is no semblance of talent anywhere to be seen."

Read on for the truth about Legacy of Blood...

Monday, May 23, 2022

"Murderers Who Killed and Plundered" - Devil Story (1986) - Film #230

If the only contribution the French ever made to world cinema was Nightmare Weekend (1986), their reputation would be sealed as filmmakers of the highest order. But there are more French films worthy of discussion here on Senseless Cinema, and one of the finest is the minimalist monster rally Devil Story, also from 1986.

Reviewer fredericmignard writes insultingly, "It's not very far from Jean Rollin, it is much worse actually (and that was hard to be!)" Reviewer BA_Harrison writes, "Devil Story suffers from poor direction, choppy editing, amateurish make-up effects and lousy acting, but the worst thing about it is the soundtrack, with all sound effects at maximum volume and repeated incessantly." And reviewer trashgang writes, "Some parts are too long, some parts are gory, some parts are childish."

Read on for the truth about the French masterpiece Devil Story...

Monday, May 9, 2022

“As You Know, I’ve Just Become 21” - The Rats Are Coming! The Werewolves Are Here! (1972) - Film #229

We continue to dig through the filmography of Mr. Andy Milligan and find gem after sparkling gem. Today's film, originally titled The Curse of the Full Moon but retitled after some footage inspired by the success of Willard (1971) was added, is The Rats Are Coming! The Werewolves Are Here! (1972)

The dismay your universe's critics display when reviewing Andy Milligan films is almost psychotically unbelievable. For example, reviewer BA_Harrison writes, "I can't find anything good to say about it. Not one thing." Reviewer The_Void writes, "Overall, I wouldn't be callous enough to recommend this dross to even my worst enemy and you should take that as a reason not to bother seeing it." And reviewer planktonrules writes, "The film reaches levels of amateurism that are hard to believe and you just have to see it to believe it."

Please, for goodness sake, read on for the truth about Andy Milligan's The Rats Are Coming! The Werewolves Are Here!...

Monday, April 25, 2022

“I Wish We Could All Pick the Way We Die” - Deep Blood (1990) - Film #228

It would be hard, of course, for filmmakers to exceed the quality of Bruno Mattei's later-period shark masterpiece Cruel Jaws (1995), but one precursor, Rafael Donato and Joe D'Amato's Deep Blood (1990), should be considered in the running for the prize.

Some of your universe's famous critics would disagree, sadly. For example, reviewer dogcow writes hyperbolically, "This is the worst italian movie ever, quite possibly the worst movie of all time!" Reviewer  the_wolf_imdb writes longwindedly, "This movie is crappy beyond any limits. It's incredible - a very bad ripoff from Jaws and other (better) shark movies. A really bad one - everything is really pathetic." And reviewer teebear817 writes, "A convaluted storyline that was brutal to watch. It dragged on and on and on."

Read on for the truth about Deep Blood...

Monday, April 11, 2022

"You Hated the Plastics and I Didn't" - The Aftermath (1982) - Film #227

There are many underappreciated film genres, and one of the most underappreciated is the middle-aged action here genre, which of course includes Low Blow (1986), reviewed here recently. Another classic of this genre, perhaps equal to Low Blow in excitement, and certainly surpassing it in terms of ambition, is actor/writer/director Steve Barkett's post-apocalyptic thriller The Aftermath (1982).

Of course, some of the revered critics of your universe misunderstand The Aftermath. Reviewer mhorg2018 writes, "It's a terrible little movie full of bad acting and has a contrived plot." Reviewer lordzedd-1 writes, "Saying this thing sucks is an understatement." And reviewer Terry-23 writes, "If you pick this up to watch a serious movie about life after a nuclear war, you'll give up on this in about 5 minutes." Of course, Terry-23 is entirely incorrect, as The Aftermath is the most realistic and educational post-apocalyptic film ever made. Please continue to read the truth...

Monday, March 28, 2022

“They’re Very Nice Persons, Carol” - Black Candles (1982) aka Hot Fantasies - Film #226

Let us continue our investigation of the career of Spanish director José Ramón Larraz, following our in-depth appreciations of Rest in Pieces (1987), Edge of the Axe (1988), and Deadly Manor (1990), not to mention earlier works like Whirlpool (1970), Symptoms (1974), and Vampyres (1974). We will now look at Black Candles (1982), also known as Los Ritos Sexuales del Diablo and Hot Fantasies.

Of course, some of your universe's critics are insufficiently impressed by Mr. Larraz's films. For example, reviewer Leofwine_draca writes, "there is absolutely nothing to redeem it. It's not scary, it's not sexy and it's definitely not worth bothering with." Reviewer Squonkamatic writes, "the ultimate conclusion of the film is silly, pretentious, intelligence insulting, and probably perfect for such an otherwise forgettable exercise in applied sleaze." And reviewer Zbigniew_Krycsiwiki writes, "the film is very slow going, and for the most part the acting ranges from bland to awful."

Read on for the truth about José Ramón Larraz's erotic thriller Black Candles...

Monday, March 14, 2022

"You Smell of Chemicals and Death" - Kiss of the Tarantula (1975) - Film #225

It is, of course, a truism that the finest films in history are always regional horror thrillers, and 1975's Kiss of the Tarantula is no exception to that proud lineage. Filmed in Columbus, Georgia, it must be admitted that the movie contains more tarantulas than kisses, but aside from that imbalance, the film is nearly perfect.

Of course, some of your universe's critics are misguided in their failure to appreciate this film. Reviewer jacobjohntaylor1, in a review titled "One of the worse horror movies of all time," writes, "This is awful. It has an awful story line. The acting it [sic] awful. It is not scary." Reviewer TokyoGyaru writes, "the movie is just tedium and people hilariously spazzing out and killing themselves over spiders that pose them no real harm." And reviewer Skutter-2 writes, "the movie is lacking in gore, suspense or anything juicy or exciting."
Such libel cannot go unaddressed, so please read on for the truth about Kiss of the Tarantula...

Monday, February 28, 2022

“I Hear Tell They’re Cannibals” - Bloodthirsty Butchers (1970) - Film #224

Let us continue our explanation of Andy Milligan's masterworks with a discussion of Bloodthirsty Butchers (1970). Like The Man with Two Heads (1972), Bloodthirsty Butchers is a renamed literary adaptation--in this case, an adaptation of the story of Sweeney Todd, demon barber of Fleet Street, a character that was originally introduced in a series of penny dreadfuls in 1846. Despite being based on an external source, Bloodthirsty Butchers is a prototypical Andy Milligan film, spiced up with gore, impressionistically uncontrolled camerawork, and scenes of intense, hateful bickering.

Despite the film's unassailable pedigree, some of your universe's critics remain unimpressed. For example, reviewer coventry writes, "The production is one gigantic mess, with an incoherent narrative structure, truly hideous photography, poor lighting, lousy acting and directing, laughable gore and zilch tension or atmosphere." Reviewer HandsomeBen writes, "This movie should be destroyed and never be seen again. It's THAT bad." And reviewer jbeaucha-1 writes, "Take my suggestion, and DO NOT see this movie unless you plan on falling asleep. TERRIBLE."

Read on for an unbiased look at one of Andy Milligan's many fine tales of terror...

Monday, February 14, 2022

“There’s No Way We Can Get Some Vicious Animals to Work On?” - The Man with Two Heads (1972) - Film #223

What would classic cinema be without Mr. Andy Milligan? The question is rhetorical, of course, because the only answer is there would be no cinema without Mr. Andy Milligan. We have already discussed several of Mr. Milligan's films: Torture Dungeon (1970), The Body Beneath (1970),  Blood (1973), and Monstrosity (1987). Now it is time to consider one of Mr. Milligan's treatments of the literary classic The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson. Released in 1972, Mr. Milligan's version of the strange tale about Henry (here William) Jekyll and his counterpart Edward (here Danny) Hyde was renamed The Man with 2 Heads in order to cash in on the big-budget Hollywood film The Thing with Two Heads (also 1972), starring Ray Milland and Rosey Grier.

Of course, as with any film by Mr. Milligan, your universe's critics are quick to show their lack of understanding and appreciation. For example, reviewer jrd_73 criticizes Mr. Milligan's entire body of work when they write, "Most of Andy Milligan's films are nearly unwatchable for anyone who demands a minimal level of quality. Static shots that run on forever, unconvincing (to say the least) period designs, and bad acting, that is what one gets with Andy Milligan." Reviewer leofwine_draca writes, "It's not a long film but the pacing drags out endlessly nonetheless." And reviewer Michael_Elliott also complains about the pacing (of an Andy Milligan film) when they write, "even at just 80 minutes the film drags and feels twice as long, which is what keeps it from being more entertaining."

Read on for the truth about The Man with Two Heads (1972)...(the truth being, in part, that there are no two-headed men in the film)...

Sunday, January 30, 2022

"You Scrambled the Wrong Egg" - Low Blow (1986) - Film #222

We do not discuss action films much here at Senseless Cinema, so we should remedy that by reviewing Low Blow (1986), starring Cameron Mitchell, Troy Donahue, and of course action hero legend Leo Fong. 

Some of your universe's respected critics are misguided about Low Blow. Reviewer dougriley, for example, writes (with at least a touch of hyperbole, I hope), "Having watched over 5000 movies in my lifetime, I can truly say this is by far the worst movie I have ever seen." Reviewer bzparkes-1 writes, "This movie is shocking. The acting is truly abominable and the attempts at humour really are pathetic." And reviewer Leofwine_draca writes, "An execrable film, so poor that I can't even classify it as an "action" movie."

Read on for an objective review of Leo Fong's action vehicle Low Blow...

Monday, January 17, 2022

"Dreadful Actors, Don't You Agree?" - Panic (1983) aka Bakterion - Film #221

Italian-Spanish co-productions filmed in Great Britain are some of the finest films world cinema has to offer, and Panic (1983), also known as Bakterion, is no exception. Italian director Tonino Ricci creates a memorable monster movie set in the sewers beneath what is either a city full of skyscrapers or a quiet suburb, or perhaps both.

For example, reviewer Hellraiser-1 writes, "It was just terribly boring." Reviewer wes-connors writes, "'Bakterion' (or 'Panic') is simply not a competent film." And reviewer strong-122-478885 writes, "strictly bottom-of-the-barrel stuff and that rendered Panic simply worthless as viable entertainment."

Read on for the truth about Panic...

Monday, January 3, 2022

“Yeah, Cash Flagg. All right.” - Las Vegas Serial Killer (1986) - Film #220

Eventually, all classics must receive sequels, and Ray Dennis Steckler's The Hollywood Strangler Meets the Skid Row Slasher (1980) is no exception. The Las Vegas Serial Killer--which asks what would happen if the Hollywood Strangler did not die at the end of the previous film, instead going to prison and moving to Las Vegas--was released six years after the original classic and expanded upon the significant mythology of serial killers walking around desolate urban locales.

Of course, some of your universe's critics misunderstand the sequel as blatantly as they misunderstood the original. For example, reviewer jamestkelly-93266 writes, "It maybe the worst thing I have ever watched."  Reviewer Sandcooler writes, "'Las Vegas Serial Killer' is the cinematic equivalent of elevator music. You barely notice its presence, but at the same time it's intensely irritating." And reviewer Woodyanders describes the film as "a meandering narrative that unfolds at a sluggish pace, dreadful post-sync sound, ineptly staged murder set pieces."

Read on for the truth about Ray Dennis Steckler's Las Vegas Serial Killer...