Monday, August 26, 2013

Deathstalker (Another goodie)

Score: 7 Out of 10

   This is now the second film I've seen in this genre (low budget sword and sorcery) and I have to say that I am really enjoying these movies. "Deathstalker (1983)" was directed by James Sbardellati. It stars Rick Hill, Barbi Benton and Lana Clarkson (who also played the lead in "Barbarian Queen (1985)). The film tells the story of an adventurer who enters into a fighting tournament in order to rescue a princess. This is another film just like "Barbarian Queen." It has plenty of action and nudity and the pacing is really good. Unfortunately the film is marred by bad acting, bad dialogue and bad writing. In addition, the first half of the movie does not seem to make a lot of sense. Most of the scenes leading up to the fighting tournament do not seem to serve a purpose. They do little in the way of character development and with the exception of a few lines of dialogue here or there, the film as a whole does almost nothing to build a back story for any of the characters. The end result is a cast of characters who feel very one dimensional. When a couple of the main characters die, I felt almost nothing for them.

    Humor, however, is this films strong point. The movie from start to finish does not take itself seriously at all. It almost feels as if the director knew he did not have a chance at making a really good movie so he just had fun with it. The violence in the movie is also presented from a humorous stand point. There is quite a bit of gore in this movie (an amount that almost makes it more like a horror film than an action film) but even when a character was being pulled apart by horses it managed to get a chuckle out of me. Overall this is a pretty fun movie. It is also the first of a four part series so I look forward to watching the sequels.

   The B-Movie Guy
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Monday, August 19, 2013

Barbarian Queen (Not as stupid as it... Never mind)

Score: 7 Out Of 10

     This movie was a real surprise for me. I will start by saying that I am a big fan of films like "Conan The Barbarian (1982)" and "Red Sonya (1985)" as well as the "Heavy Metal" comic series (1977-Present), so in hindsight, I should not be surprised with myself for liking this movie. "Barbarian Queen (1985)" was directed by Hector Olivera. It stars Lana Clarkson, Katt Shea (who went on to direct "The Rage: Carrie 2 (1999)") and Frank Zagarino. The plot follows the story of a tribal queen who's village comes under attack by Romans on her wedding day. After the attack she rounds up some other female warriors and sets off on a quest to rescue her kidnapped fiance and the other villagers. The plot really does not get any more in depth than that, but I am betting if you are reading this than you are not looking for a deeply intellectual experience anyway. There is, however, a lot to like about this film.

    The film is very well paced and is full of fun (and sometimes funny) action. It really had me entertained during an especially creative (and silly) torture scene. This film does have it's problems, though. The acting, more often is than not, is downright terrible and the dialogue is just laughable. Some of the actors were not speaking English while shooting and there is a pretty bad dub job to replace the original audio (think 1970's kung fu movies bad). This is no academy award nominee, folks. It is low budget, schlocky, campy and barely clothed fun. Pop some popcorn and invite your friends over and just enjoy it for what it is.

   The B-Movie Guy
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Monday, August 5, 2013

Hallowen Night (What Did I Just See?)

Score: 2 Out Of 10

       Do not be fooled by the first fifteen minutes of this film. It is not a rip-off of Rob Zombies remake of "Halloween." It was actually released about a year before. In fact it makes me some what suspicious of Mr. Zombies film. "Halloween Night" was directed by Mark Atkins and stars Derek Osedach, Rebekah Kochan and Scot Nery. The plot is about a killer who escapes from a psych ward and returns to his childhood home to wreak havoc on not-so-innocent party goers (that first part should sound familiar). No joke, the acting is bad, the dialogue is bad, the direction is bad, the special effects are bad and the writing is bad. There are a few good ideas in play here, but the film is so bad over all that it does not even seem worth it to acknowledge said good ideas... so I won't. One of the things that bothers me the most about this film is that if it was not for the horror elements, the film would have served as an at least half way decent drama (as a drama I would have given it at least a five out of ten).

      Unfortunately what we have here is a mess. The characters feel paper thin and relatively uninteresting and the villain himself is just all over the place. At one point he is beating people to death, then a few scenes later someone puts him in a headlock and he just completely takes it. The film makers try to make him in a couple of scenes seem sympathetic but even that completely fails. All of this leads up to a "twist ending" that just winds up being predictable and forgettable. An almost total waste of time.

The B-Movie Guy

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