Fear City (1984)

On the surface, it looking like a cheap bit of crime drama. Just under the surface, a lot more T&A than expected, but I should have seen the “Thriller” tag and put two and two together so that’s on me. Beneath all that, a far more complicated movie which tries to push at the boundaries of what cinema could . Or, at least, something that throws every idea it can think of into a mafia / slasher / romance / cop / action / psychological / thriller cheapie.
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Dark Disciple (2016)

Allan Caggiano, who by his own admission has no formal training, set out with a four-person production crew to make a movie and for that I applaud him. He also said that “reviews (even the harsh ones) are greatly appreciated” so on the off change he gets to read this I hope he doesn’t think I’m being unfair with what’s about to be said. Making any kind of film is a soul-breaking task, and at the very least he brought into the world something that a group of us spent a pleasant hour and a half watching.
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The Stranger (1995) kicked some spooky arse

Ruffians are running the town in Arse End Of Nowhere, and the sheriff can’t stop them. A mysterious Stranger with a mysterious past rolls into town, all mysteriously, and starts dishing out some brutal street justice. We’ve seen the movie a hundred times, but is it enough that in this 1995 Fritz Kiersch The Stranger is a woman?
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The VelociPastor (2019)

Yes, I know this was the talk of the psychotronic town a couple of years ago. I was too busy watching other junk to get around to it, and I’ve got a weird (possibly anti-hipster) aversion to popular B-Movies, so that’s another cheap newscycle I missed out on. Anyway, I’m here and I’m sorry I missed the start of the party because, holy heck, this is one fun movie. Continue reading

Double Dragon (1994)

In the history of films based on video games, Double Dragon will always be the one that people go “oh, they made that? Really?”. It had the misfortune of coming out a year after the first videogame movie, Super Mario Bros, and a month before what is still one of the most heavily promoted, Street Fighter. It also had about a quarter the budget of either, and no big-name stars. But, much like the game itself when I was a kid in the arcade, I had to give it a go.
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The Suicide Squad (2021) Review: Or “James Gunn is one sick puppy, and I love him”

Is it a reboot? Is it a sequel? Is it an investigation into the mind of the anti-hero, asking the question “can bad people still do good things?”? Who cares: I saw a man get ripped in half by a giant man-shark, in full-frame with slow-mo, and laughed like a hyena while it happened.

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Prey Of The Jaguar (1996)

This 1996 low-budget superhero/vigilante movie was picked for the Thursday night Trash Or Treasure watch party because sometimes you just want some light-hearted action nonsense to get in your eyeballs. It had a solid batch of B-Movie headliners and a premise so simple it couldn’t go wrong. Yet what we ended up with was significantly lesser than the sum of its parts.

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Returner (2002)

Ever since James Cameron asked the eternal question, “can I get away with ripping off an episode of The Outer Limits?”, time travel movies have followed a fairly set rote; man comes back from apocalypse, finds Partner/Scientist/Chosen One/Tits McGuffin, fights things through a combination of True Guts and Slow-Motion, and saves the day/saves the future/sets up a time-paradox you can drive a lorry through. So, after picking up and reading the back of the 2002 Takashi Yamazaki directed Returner, I was expecting more of the same but with a bit of gun-fu.
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Nemesis (1992)

Let’s cut to the chase: does the line “86.5% [cyborg] is still human” send the kind of shivers down your spine that you haven’t felt since you were a teenager, imagining how wicked-ninja-cool it would be to live in a world of corps, cyborgs and corruption? If not, then this bit of contrived more-cyberpunk-than-cyberpunk nonsense from 1992 will bore the pants off you. If, however, it gets you revved up like the first assault rifle you fell in love with whilst thumbing through a hand-me-down copy of Guns and Ammo, then it’s quite possibly the film for you, depending on how much derivative, corny content you can put up with.

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Six String Samurai (1998) Buddy Holly, Nuclear Mutants, and Fancy Swords

When people describe a film as having “a singular vision”, they normally mean something like the perfection of The Godfather, the scale of Heaven’s Gate, or the symbolism of 2001: A Space Oddity. They normally don’t mean “so bugnuts crazy, that it’s the only example of its genre ever likely to exist”, but Lance Mungia’s 1998 independent work Six String Samurai can only be described as such, because if there exists another post-apocalyptic samurai rock ‘n’ roll road movie homage of the book the Wizard of Oz, then I sure as hell don’t know about it – and trust me, I’ve looked!. Having seen it, you’ll understand why it’s a both a pity and a grace that this is the case, because it does what it sets out to do with so much style and swagger, and you’ll be convinced that no other attempt could ever get it so right.
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