Saturday, May 14, 2011

bad/awesome flixxx review: Dudes (1987)

"Biscut, you're washing dishes in a shithole, brother. Personally, I think you could risk the career change."- Milo

"Real life is not California. Real life is a shit sandwich and every day you gotta take another bite. "- Grant

"That buddy of yours; that was the first white man we ever killed, honest!"- Thug

"Yeah, man, but my real bread and butter's the Bullfightin' scene. You really oughta' catch my act sometime - it's going nowhere but up!"- Daredelvis

Alahoyus! I found this little nugget of joy in Asheville last week on VHS. Another flick that may never see DVD release and prolly never even come close to Blu-ray. Directed by Penelope (All's Quiet On The Western Front) Speeris, we have a sort of punk rock Easy Rider story about 3 "dudes" who decide that they're going nowhere in New York, so why not split to California. The story is about what happens along the way. With a KILLER soundtrack and starring Jon (2.5 dorks) Cryer, Daniel (the killer from "River's Edge") Roebuck, Lee Ving from the band Fear (in his 2nd flixxx review! see "The Wild Life"), the Vandals, and Flea(!), BAFR presents DUDES!!!!

Milo, Grant, & Biscuit are three NYC punkrockers who are sick of eating in diners and getting the shit kicked out of themselves. They'd much rather eat in diners in California apparently, so Milo (Flea) puts up 1000 bucks he has saved up for gas so they can split. The other 2 are against the idea in the beginning, but after a near accidental fall, they give in. Hopping in Grant's old VW bug, they head across the American plains, taking pics, and listening to tunes, and being excited the way you tend to be if you've never driven across before or seen any wildlife outside of NYC.

They make it as far as Utah, and then they decide to camp overnight in this spot. All of a sudden these rednecks pull up in trucks and rob them at gunpoint. The main badguy's name is Missoula (probably because he has a tattoo of Montana on his arm). What made me go wow, I wish it was still the 80s or even the early 90s was the fact that they made it from NYC to Utah, and still had 800 bucks! That would have cost them a hell of a lot more in gas these days. Anyway, the dudes try to escape, running thru the desert but Milo has a cast on his leg, and somehow rolls down the hill, and the redneck shoots him in the face while the other two hide. The rednecks split, and leave Grant & Biscuit bewildered in the dust.

At first they are about to try and drive to Cali anyway, but they realize its futile because they are broke. They try and go into town and get the Easy Rider redneck treatment from the locals, getting their asses kicked in a diner, but having sympathy taken on them by a hot tow truck driver girl. They split, find the sympathetic redneck guy killed, steal his guns and go after Missoula. They find him but wreck trying to kill him. The tow truck chick rescues them and takes Grant riding in the woods on a horse. Biscuit dreams he's a Native American. She gives them a convertible! Then they go to kill the rednecks. They go to a rodeo and meet up with this dude Daredelvis who owed them a favor from the beginning of their journey. Then they drink some Snake Juice and trip in the desert.

Then they find the rednecks, ambush them in a theater, get arrested. The tow truck chick comes to help, the rednecks kill the cops, they get busted out of jail, then chase down and kill the rednecks. The fucked up thing is, its hard to tell whether this is supposed to be a comedy, or an action film, or what? Its another one of those late 80s dark comedies, coming of age, style flixxx with a feel very much like 'River's Edge'. You can't really believe it when their friend gets killed, you can't really believe that these kids are actually hunting down and killing these rednecks! Also somewhere in there along the way, both dudes see visions, one of a cowboy watching over them named Witherspoon, and 3 Indians. Its a weird ass flick. But in the end, Milo rides off into the sunset with Witherspoon & the Indians, and the final shot is a VERY AWKWARD scene freeze of Biscuit, Grant, and the chick. Very strange. But if you can find it, I'd say watch it. Its broken up into like 10 parts on google video if you wanna check it out there. Word.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

bad/awesome flixxx review: Trick or Treat (1986)

"Shut up! Play my tape for me tonight or die!"- Sammie Curr

"These evil people have just got to be stopped."- The Reverend (Ozzy)

"I'm gonna get all these fucking assholes back... somehow... someway."- Eddie

My buddies have been telling me about this one for a while. Its sort of in this small pocket genre of "rocknroll horror" along with Black Roses, Hard Rock Zombies, Rocknroll Nightmare, and the already reviewed Shock Em Dead. Everyone seemed to think this may be THE rocknroll horror movie. I have to admit it's pretty good, but goes on about a half an hour too long. Just when you think its almost over, the damn thing almost goes into the whole ending scene which is another 45 minutes. It gets a special mention for being a Dino "Conan" Laurentiis Production and for having Fastway do most of the soundtrack. Marc Price from Family Ties stars with cameo roles for Gene Simmons and Ozzy in TRICK OR TREAT!!!

This one starts off with a story of a kid that I could totally relate to. Eddie "Ragman" Weinbauer is a metalhead who gets the shit beat out of him pretty much on a daily basis (not that I got the shit beat out of me EVERYday). The weird thing was he was the only metalhead in the school, his only friend was a nerd kid. He's writing a letter to his hometown hero who's now a bigshit rockstar, Sammie Curr. Then he goes to wash his dirties, and BAM! The evening news smacks him in the face saying that ol Sammie has been killed in hotel fire. It also goes on to say that he had been banned from playing his alma mater, the local high school's Halloween dance. Eddie is bummed and goes to the local radio disc jockey "Nuke" played by Gene Simmons.

Nuke says come on Ragman, don't be sad, here's the fucking only copy of Sammie Curr's last ever recorded acetate. And just gives it to him because he made a tape of it. See? Bootlegging has been a problem since the 80s. Eddie is psyched, goes to school and a little subplot happens where this lil cutie digs him but his rage over the meatheads makes him oblivious to her sexual longing. He DOES go to check her out at a late night swim sesh, but is again foiled and embarrassed, sealing the deal for him to worship the devil. Not really. Actually he goes home, throws down the fresh wax, passes out, wakes up as the record is stuck on a part where some words are skipping backwards. Obviously he is pissed because this is a brand new rekkid, and he goes to check it out. Trying it just to see if itll work, he scratches the rekkid backwards, and sure enough a secret message JUST TO HIM. It's Sammie Curr speaking to him from beyond the grave.

Sammie tells him to get up to all kinds of hijinx, even going so far as to make a copy of the rekkid so he can portably fuck dudes up. He gives the main meathead a copy to listen to in hopes of getting revenge, but then the meatheads girlfriend starts taking her clothes off, and then it melts her ears and a demon fucks her. At this point, Eddie goes, hey now, I'm not sure about this shit, and he tries to get Sammie to back off, but Sammie is like, "kill everyone!" "even yer mom", and so begins the second part of the movie where Eddie tries to escape Sammie's wrath and save the town. Sammie escapes the record and starts wrecking shit. Ozzy is also hilarious as a preacher, mimicking the same old fogies who sat on similar shows saying the same bullshit about his lyrics.

Sammie gets his nerd friend to steal and destroy the tape, but the nerd doesn't destroy it, he takes it to play at the high school dance, where Sammie escapes thru the speakers and plays with his band (who SUCK). Haha, he does these super shitty rock moves that make sense knowing the actor was a solid gold dancer. WOW. Anyway, he starts killing everyone with lightning bolts from his guitar and then Eddie comes to save the day, and win the chick. Think its over? Not even close. Then he realizes that Nuke planned to play the single over the airwaves at midnight, so he tries to make it to the station, but he's way late, so there's like a citywide destruction scene where Eddie actually drives a car over a bridge to electrocute Sammie..... I guess he didn't think of jumping out. The dumbass couldve been killed himself. Anyway... its pretty good. Especially if you like 80s metal. A little long, but Its bad, and Its awesome, so it fits here perfectly. Check it out. Party.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

bad/awesome flixxx review: The Evil That Men Do (1984)

"I'm gonna rattle his cage. And when he sticks his neck out, I'll nail him."- Holland

"Human rights violations? There is no such thing. There is only the security of the state and those who'd undermine that security."- Molloch

"I've decided I should keep my opinions to myself."- Rhiana

Found a copy of this in Austin on DVD on tour. I've always been a big Bronson fan, but this was a early 80s number so I was skeptical if it would be any good, but that's the whole point here right? Holy shit, I hit the jackpot. My favorite Bronson flick has always been the Mechanic and of course its a total classic, but I believe I have found THE sleeper Bronson flick. What an incredible movie. I watched it the other night with my pop and we were just howling at how badass ol Chuck was. Not only was it pretty violent, but it was just well written and an all around enjoyable experience. It was directed by J. Lee Thompson (who did the og Cape Fear, and the last 2 og Planet of the Apes flicks). Future WWF star The Great Khali, constant background and/or supporting actors John Glover and Joseph Maher, Jose Ferrar, and Charles Bronson star in THE EVIL THAT MEN DO!!!

So this one begins with an evil dude in a hood explaning to a room full of would be torturers the finer points of electrocution. The guy they are using as the guinea pig just so happens to be a long time journalist friend of our protagonist Holland. Holland is a retired killer for hire spending his days chilling at his remote place on the Caymen Islands somewhere. When word gets out that this dude is killed, this old guy comes to ask Holland if he'll come out of retirement and seek retribution for his old friends death. The old dude brings a bunch of video tapes of all these victims and friends of victims all explaining the most horrific experiences at the hands of someone called "the doctor". One man talks about how they fed his wife her own excrement and then cut out her liver and kidneys and fed them to her. However, Holland turns the man down explaining more than once, "I'm retired".

The "Doctor" is this dude named Molloch who has 4 bodyguards and his sister hanging out with him at all times. He is a master of torture and gets hired by different governments (even the US) to take care of business. He's about to get kicked out of Guatamala so he sends his main bodyguard Randolph to his government stooge Briggs to tell him to pull some strings so he doesn't have to split, because "the air agrees with him there". Meanwhile Holland comes to town as he's had a change of heart. He says he'll do it, but he needs a woman and child to pose as his wife and kid so he can pose as a family man on vacation. The weird thing is he gets set up with his buddy's widow and child. I would have put the kibosh on that right away, but he took em anyway.

Soon as he gets there he starts checking shit out and it doesn't take him very long to get down to business. He tracks the main bodyguard to a bar, then some HUGE dude starts fucking with the widow. He tries to play it cool for a second, but then he grabs the dude- BY THE DICK- and basically picks the dude up by his weiner, puts his foot on his neck, and then squeezes that dudes weiner til he passes out!! Its one of the most intense scenes I've ever witnessed. They should teach that to chicks in self defense classes. The bodyguard is impressed, and they strike up a convo. Holland pretends to be swingers. They get the dude back to their room, and within one minute Holland hucks a fucking knife right into this dude's neck! Blood everywhere. Then he takes him over to the hideout and shoots out the lights and cameras, and throws the body in the street. Molloch sends another dude to ask about what happened, and Holland is there waiting and chokes him out right away.

I don't want to give away everything on here, but basically there's a scene where he makes it look like a dude hangs himself by wrapping a fucking emergency fire hose around his neck and kicking him off a 25 or 30 story building. Then he slips out with the sister. He pulls all these moves that you ask, why is he doing that? Like, the sister gets capped, and he takes the time to bury her before he splits. Me and my pop were like, "fuck that, I'd get out of there asap, why take the time and bury her??", but then later, the goons looking for them think that they still had her. I guess I'm not as smart as a professional killer. He had a lot of foresight. I won't give them all away. His weapon of choice? Sawed off shotgun. Blows motherfuckers clean out of the room!! I say for some badass scenes, an intense ending, and great writing, you should try to find yourself a copy of this one. One of my new favorites!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

bad/awesome flixxx review: Excalibur (1981)

"Now look, I once stood exposed to the Dragon's Breath so that a man could lie one night with a woman. It took me nine moons to recover. And all for this lunacy called, "love, " this mad distemper that strikes down both beggar and king. Never again. Never." - Merlin

"My pride broke it. My rage broke it! This excellent knight, who fought with fairness and grace, was meant to win. I used Excalibur to change that verdict. I've lost, for all time, the ancient sword of my fathers, whose power was meant to unite all men... not to serve the vanity of a single man. I am... nothing." - Arthur

"Your rage has unbalanced you. You sir, would fight to the death, against a knight who is not your enemy. Over a stretch of road you could easily ride around."- Lancelot

"The days of our kind are number├Ęd. The one God comes to drive out the many gods. The spirits of wood and stream grow silent. It's the way of things. Yes... it's a time for men, and their ways."- Merlin

This is a pretty great film. It gets confusing in the middle, but I think anyone who grew up studying the legend of King Arthur will enjoy this one. I think maybe my first experience with the story was the Disney version called "The Sword in the Stone". This gives you the beginning of the story and more of the ending concluding with the search for the holy grail. It also has a shitload of bigtime actors in it in some of their earliest roles. Liam Neeson, Helen Mirren, Gabriel Byrne, Patrick Stewart, some dude named Nigel Terry as Arthur (and one of the most badass movie posters I've ever seen) in EXCALIBUR!!!

This one starts out with a dude named Uther Pendragon & his knights trying to beat this guy the Duke of Cornwall and become King to unite the land at his sorceror Merlin's behest. He begs Merlin for the Sword of Power (Excalibur) so Merlin goes and gets it from the Lady in the Lake. Then he gets up with the Duke and makes a truce on the promise the Duke will call him King and be cool. The Duke invites him over to party since they have peace, but Uther falls in love with his chick at dinner, royally pissing off the Duke. Uther says fuck it, and lays siege to the duke's castle, and then splits after he makes Merlin promise to use his powers to let him bang Iygrane (the chick). The duke searches for Uther, but Uther rides over on Dragon smoke disguised as the Duke and bangs Iygrane getting her preggers in the process. The duke is killed at the same time and his daughter Morgana knows the truth cause she's got the sight.

So Iygrane has Uther's baby but it gets taken away by Merlin cause he tricked Uther into promising him whatever he wanted. Then the duke's old buddies come and kill Uther while he's searching for his kid in the woods, except before he dies, he crams the sword into a rock. Merlin puts a spell on it so no one can pull it out except for the kid who he names Arthur. Fast forward to a tourney where knights are trying to win a chance to pull the sword out. Arthur is there with his adopted family and he forgets his bro's sword, so he pulls Excalibur from the stone so his bro can use it (like he just happened to think "well this will work"). Everyone is like you're the king, but some dudes are pissed and say its Merlin trickery. So Arthur bolts. When he wakes up in the forest, the knights are fighting and he gets the ones on his side to go help the captain of star trek TNG out and falls for his daughter Guinnevere. Everyone bows down to him.

Then Arthur on his exploits encounters a knight from across the sea, Lancelot. Lance won't let him pass, and Arthur gets pissed and breaks Excalibur fighting him. But the lady fixes the sword since Arthur learned his lesson. Then he asks Lance to join him, and creates the knights of the round table after winning the final battle for peace at Camelot. Lancelot falls in love with Guinnevere so he never hangs around with the dudes. He hides in the woods. Brings this squire Percival home. Then Liam Neeson accuses Guinnevere of banging Lancelot. Everyone is like, "what the fuck?" Then they make him fight someone. No one will stand up for her except Percival. Then lance falls asleep on his own sword. Then he comes and fights for her anyway. He almost dies, but Arthur makes Merlin save him. He splits. But Guinn comes to bang him out in the woods. Arthur goes out there and stabs his sword inbetween them. Guinn cries and joins a nunnery. Lance splits off into the woods for good. Morgana traps Merlin in an ice sculpture and steals his magic. Then she BANGS her own fucking brother! GROSS! and she gets herself preggers with Arthurs kid.

So Morgana has the unholy kid Mordred. It makes a curse come upon the land. Since Arthur and the land are one, he gets sick as hell. Then he sends all of his knights to look for this cup: the holy grail. Most of the die looking for it. Ten years later Percival almost finds it, gets trapped, escapes, finds a haggard Lancelot, the finds it in a dream?!? And then he goes back to Camelot. He makes Arthur drink from it. Arthur gets better immediately, forms up a small army, forgives Guinn, and goes to kill his own incest son. He calls upon Merlin who wakes up and becomes a ghost and steals his magic back making Morgana advance in age so she looks like a fucking old gross witch. Mordred sees her and kills his own mother. Then Arthur and Mordred kill each other. But as Arthur's dying he tells Percival to throw the sword in some water. He lies to him at first, but then he does it, and then Arthur is floating away with three chicks. I think he was dead.
Pretty awesome. John Boorman was great. I say check it out. Swords and sorcery jams are my fav.