Lace Crater (7/10)

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Awkward New York millennial Ruth takes a trip to the Hamptons with her awkward New York millennial friends. Amongst the laconic drug-doings and internecine romantic maneuverings, Ruth manages to meet an awkward New York millennial ghost in the property’s haunted coach house. This friendly but socially inept ghost fellow, Michael, is oddly solid for a ghost, and also sufficiently tumescent for a nice romp in the haunted coach house.

The next day, on the ride back from the Hamptons (who goes to the Hamptons for one night? I don’t know, I don’t go to the Hamptons), Ruth pukes in her friend’s car. From there, it’s all down-hill for Ruth, as she experiences ectoplasmic night-sweats, eldritch vaginal discharges, and non-therapeutic skin-peels.

So, first off, this is the first movie (as far as I know) that combines body horror with disaffected millennial angst. Interesting choice. Maybe millennials need a little more body horror in their lives; maybe that’s what’s been missing from that generation. Anywho, Ruth is very underdeveloped. As a character, I mean — her boobs were just fine. I’m guessing much of the dialogue in this movie was improvised, so maybe Ruth’s actress just wasn’t the improv sort. Which is ok, since millennials are typically rather underdeveloped anyways. And when they are developed, they’re mostly whiny and selfish, which was portrayed well by the other characters.

Now that I’m done with generation bashing, let’s talk ghosts. There’s definitely some new territory covered here. For example, I had no idea that humping a ghost would get you Ghost AIDS (or whatever it is). Ghostliness as STD, interesting idea. Also, the portrayal of Ghost Michael as just some dude that happens to be dead and doesn’t know how he feels about it is probably the best part of this movie. He’s not scary, or violent, or threatening, just rather lost and alone. The ghost sex arose naturally from his predicament, and the penalty that Ruth pays for her kindness inspires sympathy.

All in all, a decent enough flick with a few interesting ponderables. One thing that grates the nerves though is the soundtrack. It was done by somebody famous that I’ve never heard of (“Neon Indian” or some such). Some of it was good retro 80s synth stuff that is popular these days, and some of it sounds like Romper Room after a bad night at the strip club. Overall, it was more distracting than anything. So remember kids, just because you’re famous, doesn’t mean you’re any good.

Night of Something Strange (7/10)

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Cornelius is a janitor at a morgue. One night, while working alone, he comes upon a relatively fresh and fairly attractive female corpse, which he then comes in. As he’s going to town on Jane Doe, we see from her toe tag that she died of radiation exposure combined with an STD. When he gets home, he promptly turns into a zombie and rapes his wife (or girlfriend, or mother, it’s not entirely clear). And, he eats her pussy (not euphemistically, but quite enthusiastically). This is all in the first 7 minutes, so we’re clearly off to a great start!

So, next we are introduced to some obnoxious high school seniors on their way to a beach somewhere. On the way, they stop at a creepy gas station where the zombie had recently chowed down on a used tampon and puked all over the toilet, and obnoxious bimbo #1 catches zombie from the toilet seat and spews chunks all over the place while the zombie watches, masturbating, from the woods. Yes, that is what I just wrote.

Soon, the obnoxious teens arrive at a creepy pedo hotel on the way to the beach, where we are treated to scenes of zombie carnage, unfortunate sexual acts, long emo conversations, and sometimes all three at once. And then things get weird. Like, talking vagina weird.

This movie is chock full of puking, pissing, and periods. And more than the usual amount of masturbating, for a zombie movie. Plus rape, cousin-fucking, accidental homosexual necrophilia, and a guy named Dirk. Really, it’s got it all, and a little more. It’s also pretty funny. And gross. And insanely deranged. So, of course I’m going to recommend it. Did you expect otherwise? You really don’t know me at all, and that makes me sad.

Best line: “How could I think your balls were two clits?”

 

Slasher House (6/10)

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We open on a nude and unconscious young woman (8/10 would bang) with unnaturally red hair laying on the floor of a jail cell. Soon, she wakes and wonders, how did she get here? She opens a locker and finds a frilly dress in red and black with a post-it note that says “Wear Me.” After some more butt shots of her screwing around in the cell (I’m not complaining), an alarm goes off and the cell door unlocks. Realizing she’s still nekkid, she decides she should probably heed the post-it note and put on the dress (sad face).

As she explores what seems to be an abandoned prison, she finds a whiny dude in another cell. We learn that, while neither of them know why they’re there, the whiny guy remembers things from before, but the girl doesn’t remember anything, even her own name. We’ll call her Red.

Soon, another alarm goes off, indicating a door has been unlocked, but it’s not the one to Whiny’s cell. Red goes to investigate, and finds that a creepy killer clown with a history of child murder has been released from his cell and is very interested in seeing Red’s insides. In very short order, Cleaver the Clown has Red pinned down and is about to start hacking away, when he is stabbed in the back by Whiny. Red and Whiny team up and start trying to find a way out. They soon find other unsavory denizens, each locked in their own cell and waiting to be released. But which are the hunters, and which are the hunted?

This was a well-made low-budget romp with above-average acting (thanks, British thespians!) There were a few missteps and questionable decisions in some of the confrontations with the baddies, but nothing that can’t be forgiven. Photography and gore effects were quite good, each character was given enough of a backstory to make them interesting, and Red has a nice ass. While the plot had a somewhat paint-by-numbers feel to it, there were a few twists (some more successful than others) along the way, and the baddies were entertainingly comic bookish. Overall, it’s probably worth a watch.

Sweatshop (6/10)

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A bunch of slutty retarded goth losers are setting up for a rave in an old abandoned warehouse when a masked killer starts dispatching them in increasingly graphic and creative ways. This plot is so simple I don’t even need commas.

Lots of titties and humping. Good stuff.

Spliced (aka The Wisher) (6/10)

Mary is a high-school girl who looks like a hotter Natalie Portman and gets horny when she watches horror movies (where was this chick when I was growing up? Or now, for that matter). She also suffers from nightmares and dangerous bouts of sleep-walking, so her dad locks her in her bedroom at night and won’t let her go to horror movies. Despite the ban and after wishing her dad would “just go away”, she goes with her friends to see super-popular but cheesy horror movie “The Wisher”. This movie-within-a-movie is about some kids summoning an evil dude that grants wishes but, of course, twists them around to be horrible. During the movie she pukes and runs out. Also, her dad finds out where she is and goes to get her, managing to get into a car wreck and dying on the way. Mary blames herself and starts seeing The Wisher around the house. Then she wishes she didn’t have to go to school, and someome burns down the school. After some more fishy wishing business, she goes to the googlenets and finds reports of strange behavior by some people who saw so the movie. Is she crazy? Are the wishes coming true for supernatural reasons? Or because someone else who saw the movie is making them come true? These are truly the most important questions of our times.

So, this started well, with hottie Mary telling her guidance counselor (an increasingly puffy Ron Silver) about her horror movie turn-on. I really thought this was going to get into some fun and twisted territory, but unfortunately this plot-line got dropped really quick and apparently was only there to give her the impetus to disobey her dad and go to the creepy movie. So, this turned out to be a much more conventional story with some Scream-like sensibilities, which kind of makes sense given that this came out in 2002, when the scream series was still rolling out frequent sequels. While nothing special (other than the cuter-than-a-button Mary and some good but non-Mary titties), it was a decent straight-to-video production with a few good moments. Really though, I am now inspired to find the actress that played Mary and make the kinky masterpiece that this could have been if they’d followed through on the promise of the opening plot-line. Anybody want to give me a million or two to fund it?

I Can See You (9/10)

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Doug, Richards, and Kimble are three scruffy young men trying to start a new ad agency in NYC. Doug’s girlfriend, Sonia, has scored them a gig with her employer, big-time cleaning product manufacturer Clara Clean, whose products may or may not be involved in ecological damage and de-forestation. Suffering from a lack of clarity in both their artistic vision and their stock photos, the three men decide that camping in the woods to get back to nature is just the ticket, so they head out of town, Sonia in tow, to the countryside where Richards grew up. Once there, Richards attempts to take some photos of nature’s grandeur, but the photos are marred by mysterious wisps of smoke, which seem to be invisible to the naked eye. That night, some old friends of Richards are invited to the camp for a barbecue, and he hooks up with his old flame, Summer Day. The next day, Doug and Summer disappear after a swim, which leads Richards to fear the worst. When Doug shows up that night without Summer and with a bad case of the crazies, things really go bonkers.

So, this movie is about as good as mini-micro-budget filmmaking can get, which, turns out, is pretty goddamn good. This thing starts out weird, and gets to be positively batshit crazy by the end. Nevertheless, it is consistently compelling, and features some genuinely creepy and jarring visuals and editing. The acting is better than one might expect at this price-point (including a great performance from indie guru and producer Larry Fessenden in a small but pivotal role), and the lack of production value really only adds to the lo-fi nuthouse vibe. The whole thing is reminiscent of something you might find in the “weird part of YouTube”, but holds up surprisingly well as a feature-length film. I really don’t want to say anything more about it, so just go watch it.

Electra Love 2000 (5/10)

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Watching Troma’s “Electra Love 2000”. I think I have uncovered a forgotten masterpiece of campy crap.

What the hell is happening?

Holy shit this is dumb.

I’m still not sure if this is good dumb or bad dumb.

I’m leaning toward bad dumb.

If we could get some titties up in here my opinion might shift.

And now it’s a musical.

Wait, is that Kim Greist?

No, it’s not.

“Dope-addicted street-stroller.” That’s a new one.

Wait, is this based on Hamlet?

I think this is based on Hamlet.

Or maybe Hamlet is based on Electra. Either way, it seems similar.

Ho’s got hooked up with a new, scrupulous pimp.

This is getting very Shakespearean.

Definitely good dumb. Maybe not even dumb at all. Still no titties though.

Pimp Shakespeare: “Life is a hell for me. I don’t even have sex any more. Do you know who washes dishes every night around here? I do. And you call me scum.”

Ho: “If you leave us, baby, the one dry candle in our dark lives will dematerialize into the infinity of non-being.” Whoa. Deep.

Ho: “We hate men, and men hate us. That’s why we get along so well.” Oh hey, titties!

Ho, with titties out: “I knew this guy once, and he believed in the concept of enemies. And he was going to be married. And then one night he listened to the president speak on television. ‘The Enemy is Evil. The Enemy commits atrocities against his peaceful neighbor. We must rush to the aid of the peaceful neighbor. Defend peace, defend freedom, defend your God, your home, your kitty cats, your trash cans.’ And he believed him. And now he’s dead, and his fiancee is a whore. That’s the joke.” Nice titties.

Ho: “Revenge for the past isn’t good.”

Boom mike.

“The promises you make as a child are the ones you must keep.”

“Vengeance is a fire that burns inside her.”

“This is a matter for doing, not for thinking.”

This is definitely a masterpiece of something.

“How can an idiot like you beat a genius like me?”

“Divide, and conquer.”

“When we find we’ve been going in the wrong direction, we must stop, and reverse ourselves.”

Oh, weird erotic poetry!

“Between the opening of of mother’s birth and the closing casket of death. And those that do not see me, do not know the happiness they have missed.”

“I sometimes think that all of us are artists that never were.”

“Political economy is an exciting field for many.”

“Oh, ménage à cinq!”

“Are you such a civilized man, your soul can’t be touched?”

“You would be surprised at the number of things that seem wicked from the outside, but are actually quite nice from within.”

Boom mike.

“I’ve always tried to seek being from nothingness.”

Fuck, I’m out of wine.

“That is my curse. I have found too much truth. People talk a lot about truth, but they won’t pay a penny for it. Lies, they’ll pay millions for.”

“In plain English, why don’t you have the guts to murder the man that killed your father.”

“I’m a free man and I determine the meaning of this game, and it means nothing to me.”

“Cops don’t protect you, Insurance agents don’t protect you. Your deodorant doesn’t protect you. And your magic charms really don’t protect you.”

“The gods destroyed us long ago.”

“She has no tricks, she is as simple and clear as the water.”

“Fuck fate, we’re free!”

“Those of us who declare ourselves free, we’re just fools.”

I wish I had more wine.

“The men from the hunger charity are still waiting.”

“Send them in, and send in the lunch.”

“I’m as busy as a call girl on Valentine’s Day.”

There seems to be a lot of crosstalk on the audio track.

“Let me tell you, it is heaven and hell, it is sublime and terrible.”

Golf club scissors fight!

“A toast to justice! For one day, she was not blind.”

“The fighting has ended, but the echoes of bombs keep screaming inside my head.”

“Because you’re beautiful even the lies that fly out of your mouth sound pretty, like the truth. But I know better.”

Well that was different.

Antibirth (10/10)

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Lou (Natasha Lyonne) and Sadie (Chloe Sevigny) are super-skanky junkies who like to party with pimp/drug dealer Gabriel. After a night of drug-fueled partying, Lou begins to show symptoms of pregnancy, even though she is sure she hasn’t had sex in months, which nobody believes because she is a total ho. Over the next few days, during which she continues drinking heroic amounts of alcohol and sucking on a huge bong, her symptoms become increasingly, and disgustingly, bizarre. She is befriended by Lorna (Meg Tilly!), who talks about aliens and weird abuse at the hands of the government. As they investigate Lou’s condition, they learn of a shadowy rich benefactor to Gabriel, who is getting girls from him in exchange for a strange new drug, which may have been given to Lou at their last party. What happened to Lou at this party? And why is Sadie spending so much time with Gabriel? Does she know more than she is letting on?

This, right here, is the shit. This is a motherfucking horror movie right here. Natasha Lyonne gives a fantastic performance as the tragicomic Lou, whose drug-laden body horror seems as much an extension of her terrible life choices as it does the result of some mysterious conspiracy. This movie is filled with bizarre characters and happenings, but they flow naturally from circumstances, never seeming like weirdness for weirdness’s sake. She views her increasingly desperate situation as just one more shitty thing that’s happened to her in her already shitty life. Even Lorna, her protector and advocate, is a freakin’ loon. It’s all just another day in the life in the seventh circle of hell that is thug life in Michigan. This is one of the most fucked up movies I’ve seen in a long time, and it is glorious.

Dark (7/10)

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So we open with hot, naked lesbo sex. I’m good with that. But, it’s not kinky enough for our main lesbo (Kate), and it’s too kinky for our supporting lesbo. Which is a recipe for frustration, no doubt. Much like the next 20 minutes of the movie, where Kate goes about her daily business, which is exceptionally mundane. Then, finally, there’s a blackout in the city (New York I think, or maybe some Canadian shithole), so maybe something interesting is about to happen… And, no. Nothing continues to occur. We watch as Kate puts batteries in her ghetto blaster. We watch as Kate plays a CD on the ghetto blaster. We watch as Kate looks at not-naked pictures of ex-girlfriends while listening to the CD playing on the ghetto blaster. Kate looks stressed out and bored. So, presumably, do I at this point. Oh hey, now Kate’s going out! Something’s bound to happen now! At least, I hope so, because there’s an hour of movie left at this point. So she goes to a club and meets a pretentious douchenozzle from Canada (yeah, we’ve established this is New York now, in belaborous detail), and they have a super-tedious conversation about boring shit. At this point, I check to see if this was written by a woman, because sometimes women have odd ideas about what should be in horror movies. But no, it’s some dude named “Elias”. Just Elias. Like, you know, Sting, or somebody. Then she wants to have sex, but he won’t because they’ve both been drinking and he’s Canadian. So she stumbles out of the club, pukes in the street, and totters off home. And now there’s 45 minutes left in the movie and I’m worried I might not have enough laundry left to fold to keep me busy for that long. Then Canadia-boy figures out he’s got at least one nut and shows up at her apartment, where they fuck, off-screen goddammit. So I guess she’s not 100% lesbo. Then in the next scene, she’s bitching to him about how shitty her life is, except that he’s not there, so he either left or he was never there in the first place. I’m out of laundry to fold, so I begin to contemplate my navel more closely. Is that some lint? Oh hey, she took her shirt off and there’s boobies and flashbacks. Now I think she’s contemplating suicide; I know I am. 30 minutes left. Remember kids, I’m doing this for you. Normally by now I’d be wrapping up the part where I talk about the plot, but nothing has really happened, so it’s difficult to figure out where to leave off.  Maybe when I get to the end of the movie, I’ll be able to figure out the point at which the plot thickened. So hold on, I’ll be back after the end, if I haven’t blown my brains out.

Ok, I’m back. Turns out I did pick the right spot, which makes sense, because I’m a professional. And as a professional, I can admit when I’m wrong. The stuff that happened in the last 30 minutes of this movie, while still not exactly throbbing with action, made me reevaluate everything that had happened up to that point, and I actually have to say, this was quite good in a very subtle, slow-burn way. Probably not for everyone, but it was not at all what I thought it would be. Also, Whitney Able was really damn good as Kate. So, I’m going to call this recommended, if you’re up for something that’s really more of a psychodrama with some horror overtones. And it does have some nice boobage.

Chopping Mall (7/10)

The Park Plaza mall has just brought its new Protectors robot security program online, and promised “Don’t worry. Nothing can possibly go wrong.” So we now how that’s going to go. The way it goes is a freak lightning storm that scrambles the brains of the Killbots. Or does it? Yeah, it does. I’m not sure why I asked that. Coincidentally, some guys that work at the furniture store are planning an after-hours party with the food court girls. As you may have guessed, mayhem ensues. Fortunately, this is the 80s, so the mall has a gun store, and our spunky kids are able to arm themselves and fight back!

God I love the 80s. They really knew what you need in a horror movie back then: Killer robots, lasers, electrocutions, oddly colored fake blood, exploding heads, flame-throwers, and boobs. Lots and lots of boobs. Well, maybe not lots ands lots, but it’s not a paucity. Anywho, this is a semi-classic Roger Corman 80s movie featuring some familiar faces — including Barbara Crampton (boobs!) and Kelli Maroney, and cameos from Mary Woronov, Dick Miller, and Paul Bartel. And the Killbots are actually pretty cool. It’s not the best the decade has to offer, but it’s not bad either. Worth a watch for nostalgia and boobs, if nothing else.