Sometimes I grow lazy, a lot as of late it seems, so I naturally get a pretty good build up of back logged flicks. Sure, I still watch a lot of crap, but sometimes I just don’t feel like writing about them! So we haven’t seen it in awhile, but here it is once again as I clean out the pantry to make space for a boatload of new crap just around the corner.
Filmed throughout the summer and the traveling punk rock show Vans Warped Tour, Punk Rock Holocaust is a low budget nearly fan made level of film featuring the gooey murders of dozens and dozens of punk bands. While not necessarily well made, nor necessarily well written, it still manages to be a fun little romp feature some rejected hair metal wannabe who wanted to be on the tour. Since his band couldn’t play, he figured he might as well take revenge. There are some creative deaths in here (animal parts in the vegan catering tent for instance) that makes for some good laughs. I will warn you that being a fan of the bands usually involved with the Warped Tour makes this movie a lot better. If you’re not a fan, you will be mostly annoyed by the soundtrack and you will be pretty clueless as they go through and hack up one band after another. Myself being a fan, it made it worth watching if not a little long.
Written by Charles Band of Puppet Master fame, fans of the puppet movies will know pretty much what to expect from Bad Channels. Rubber monsters, fairly longwinded storyline, it’s all there. This time around we have shock jock Dan O’Dare, who’s ticked off to many people with his antics in the big city, is now launching a new station in Podunk, USA. While carrying on with his inaugural shock fest, Dan’s station is taken over by an alien hell bent on capturing earth’s females. (Aren’t we all?)
Bad Channels is a schlock fest, aiming more for cheese than any sense of serious scares. While it does work to an extent, it mostly comes across as a longwinded rambling on 80′s styles and clichÃ©s. There is nothing scary here of course, but there are some good chuckle points, and the plot does in fact have a beginning and an end, so there’s always that. The best part, as the alien hones in on his next target, he twiddles the switches on his big alien machine to lock on to the girl. When the signal is locked in, the girl zaps into some bizarro dream state and we watch along as the girls are suddenly acting music videos dancing and grinding along to random hair metal tracks. These range from dancing on a diner bar, grinding with a band geek (redemption at last!!), and a scantily clad nurse boogie. So while the story’s pretty meh, at least you get hot dancing girls yah?
Here’s the gist. In a space faring culture, two female body guards wind up crossing paths while chasing their bounty. Unfortunately for them, they wind up on a back water planet that is the process of upheaval from both an oppressive government and a deadly street drug that is ravaging the planet. In nut shell, Planetfall is a spaghetti western in outer space. Old west looking frontier towns, leather dusters, the works. While many people did not like this one at all, I found it enjoyable if not a bit engrossing. Keep in mind I get sucked into a lot of sub par sci-fi fare, this one managed to stand a bit above the rest in terms of quality. The special effects look cheap and the pace is a bit plodding, but overall it’s worth a once through if you like to watch for a story as opposed to all the gloss that’s usually heaped on top. If you like old BBC science fiction with their paper thin sets, etc, then you should get some mileage out of Planetfall.
What’s there to say about Grindhouse that hasn’t already been said? While I saw this opening weekend, there was such a glut of coverage on this one I figured why bother. That said, for myself this flick was excellent on pretty much all facets. Planet Terror was a cheese infested zombie thrill ride that captured the feel of the grind house features pretty damn well. With Death Proof, while it was a complete 360 in terms of pace from the first feature, it was still a slow burning dialogue fest that, after the snowball started rolling, gained moment continually throughout until we hit the unexpected thrill ride ending. Everyone involved was enjoyable to watch, highlights being Kurt Russel in Death Proof
The fake trailers in the intermission where a complete blast and left me longing to see their full featured equivalents. When the entire theatre screamed aloud in laughter at the conclusion of Eli Roth’s Thanksgiving, it was quite apparant that many people agreed.
Bruce Campbell, killer cop. Enough said. An 80′s attempt at mixing up the slasher drama, this time around we see one of the boys in blue hacking away at the populace. Entertaining in the way only 80′s slashers can be, Maniac Cop runs slower paced the most, and doesn’t rely as heavy on the jump scares here. While the killer is kept mostly in the darkness through, we rely more on dialogue to flesh out the mystery on who’s killing who. Bruce Campbell is Bruce as he normally is, providing a framed cop caught in his web of adultery and being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Really, this one is pretty sleepy as far as 80′s slasher go, but the story’s pretty complete making it worth a watch. And it’s not that often you see the good guy’s turn bad.