Wednesday, April 29, 2020

people you fancy but shouldn't (part 92).

First Deputy Director and de facto leader of the Propaganda and Agitation Department of the Workers' Party of Korea, the wonderfully evil librarian-like Kim Yo-jong.

Thursday, April 16, 2020

apocalypse sow.

With the Resident Evil 2 Remake released to critical acclaim - well my mate Paul was excited* - across PS4, Xbox One and PC in January 2019 and Resident Evil 8 coming soon(ish) I reckoned it'd be a good time to re-review some of the top quality motion pictures based on that illustrious video game saga.

Plus they've got viruses and stuff in them so they kinda suit the mood.

Have to admit tho' I did pull this one randomly from the boxset (it was a gift honest) so no idea which one this is but I think it's the second - slightly less shitey one.

Resident Evil: Apocalypse (2004)
Dir: Alexander Witt
Cast: Milla Jovovich, Sienna Guillory, Oded Fehr, Iain Glenn, Sandrine Holt, Thomas Kretschmann, Sophie Vavasseur, Razaaq Adoti, Jared Harris, and Mike Epps.

L.J.: [a Zombie walks in front of his car] GTA, Motherfucker!
[he runs over the Zombie, which flips over his car]
L.J.: Yeah! Ten points!

Welcome to Raccoon City, a normal American suburban paradise indistinguishable from any other but for the large amounts of piss stained tramps wandering about trying to bite folk.

Oh yes, and the fact that it looks a wee bit like Canada and also that the bird from The Fifth Element has taken to wandering about the streets wearing a tea-towel as a dress.

So actually nothing like a normal American suburban paradise then?

Well apart from the tramps obviously.

Anyway, while the stinky hobo's are quickly taking over and the towns residents (who surprisingly aren't evil) are desperately trying to leave - or at the very least are desperate to appear in a better film - the local law enforcement (and part time jazz dance crew by the looks of them) are fighting a losing battle to maintain order - and interest - against an overwhelming number of undead gypsies and the directors almost obscene obsession with crash zooming in on ladies underwear as they climb stairs to avoid a nibbling.

If this wasn't enough to put a downer on everyone's week, the evil multinational in charge of the town, the Umbrella corporation has decided to erect large gates at every exit and has taken to machine gunning anyone who gets too close.

Which is a mercy killing really.

Valentine: She loves you not.

The local (and I do mean local) news anchor Terri Morales (turnip nosed, topless star of Rapa Nui and latter day Mr Robot cast member Holt) is bravely (and sweatily) reporting from the front lines.

What she doesn't realize is that Umbrella are blocking the broadcast, effectively cutting Raccoon City off from the outside world.

The swines.

You see, it seems that not only do they own the local secret labs, the pound shop and the bakery but also the news channels too.

Imagine an even more patently bastard Trump empire but with sexier suits and less grating accents.

Oh yes and an ability to say 'China' properly.

Tho' you think she'd have noticed the big, fuck off Umbrella logo on the side of the cameras before now.

Back in town at the local police station, a squad of Raccoon Cities finest are doing their best not to get bitten by stinky zombie prostitutes whilst not spilling their coffees and filing traffic reports but to no avail.

Enter (oh go on, if I must) barely dressed, gun toting tottie Jill Valentine (Guillory from Love Actually and Fortitude), a no nonsense cop, kicked off the force for doing things her way.

Is there any cliche this film wont dig up and parade kicking and screaming in front of us like so gin soaked arthritic relative?

Taking time out from telling everyone to leave whilst walking around with her arse wiggling in the style of a ten year old cross-dressing Chinese boy, Jill shoots an undead hooker in the face and grabs a Snickers bar before heading off to meet up with her better looking (and far better dressed) cop buddy Carlos (the chip pan haired Fehr from, ahem, The Mummy Returns).

Which begs the question as to why she didn't just go and meet up with him in the first place rather than going to the station just to walk straight thru' and leave.

Oh yes, it was so we could all enjoy the long tracking shot of her backside.

My bloody Valentine.

Anyway some more (inconsequential but very loud) shit happens and the pair end up hiding out in a church alongside Terri the reporter and rent an ethnic sidekick Wells (Adoti from Doom - the guy must like his video games, well it's either that or he's got a huge drugs habit to fund) where our fearsome foursome come across a fat vicar and his zombie sister before being attacked by some inconsequential CGI turd-monsters with big tongues.

Slobbering slimy mouth monsters and skimpily dressed heroines?

This is where the movie could get interesting.

But no, given the choice between some girl on monster tentacle sex or having the writers wife smash thru' the window on a motorbike the director goes for the latter.

Yup, it's genetically engineered skinny bird Alice (the monkey faced, boy hipped and high Scrabble scoring Jovovich), fresh from lying strapped to a bed and flashing her smooth milky white thighs and a wee bit of bush (just enough to give the small boys watching something to do with their free hand) at the end of the first movie and ready to kick zombie bum.

Oh, and show her pants a lot.

Jovovich: Water sports.

Meanwhile back at the plot, the evil (yet sexily uniformed) Major Jeff Cain (Kretschmann, that nasty rapist from The Stendhal Syndrome) is busy arguing with the crippled (both physically - I mean he is ginger - and emotionally) genius behind Umbrella's slightly dodgy bio-weapons experiments Dr. Ashford (Harris, who is obviously getting ready to appear in Chernobyl - the miniseries not the actual place that is).

It seems that in the confusion they forgot to evacuate the good doctor's daughter before shutting down the city, mistakenly crashing the car she was in into a wall instead.


Well Milla knew exactly who to fuck to get into the picture but who does she have to fuck to get out of it?

Wheeling off in a strop (well in a wheelchair but you know what I mean), Ashford (but alas not Simpson) secretly contacts our merry band of zombie hunters - who've now picked up a wise cracking pimp named LJ ('played' if that's the right word by a shameless Epps) and offers them a safe route out of the city.

But only if they rescue his daughter first....

Seriously, this doesn't deserve art this good.

Jumping the directors ship for the abominable sequel to the lackluster (nah, I'm being polite - that should read utterly shite) Resident Evil, baby faced movie mangler Paul W.S. Anderson handed over the reigns to Alexander Witt.

Lucky fella.

As you may remember, Anderson is the 'genius' behind the brash and ballsy violent violation of Forbidden Planet that was Event Horizon, the fist fuck of a film called Alien Vs. Predator as well as the not too bad (if I'm honest) Mortal Kombat and the Kurt Russell straight to video Blade Runner-baiting abortion Soldier.**

Sorry if I'm bringing back bad memories here but people need reminding of these facts.

"Laugh now!"

So you can only imagine how much of an utter shite-fest this movie is seeing as Anderson quickly booted Witt from the director's chair for the next installment.

Tho' let's be honest, how do you make a totally unwanted and unnecessary sequel to a film that couldn't even be arsed being anything like the video game it was based on in any way halfway decent or indeed watchable?

Give credit where it's due tho', I mean Witt's DP CV is/was certainly impressive (in a mainstream kinda way) and for years previous to this travesty he'd been working alongside Sir Ridley of Scott which you'd think would be pretty good on the job training.

At the very least the film should look nice, not like it was shot thru' a gauze of watered down shite.

Saying that it was 16 years and about 400 sequals ago so some fucker must have liked it.

Which is even scarier a thought when you realise that the next one - the beige hell that was Resident Evil: Extinction - was directed by the uber-permed one-hit wonder Russell (Razorback) Mulcahy.
For those lucky enough to never have seen it, it's less a horror thrill-ride and more a virtual reality trip thru' Simon LeBon's 80s boil wash.

On a brighter note, Alexander Witt's career now seems to consist of making short films for Land Rover which must pay quite well seeing as his last major movie - the Nic Cage starer Red Squad - seems to have vanished into the ether.

Imagine that, a Nic Cage movie too shit to release?

Now if only RE:A was as scary.

"You ain't seen me....right?"

Who stole Milla's leg?

Complete and utter tosh, which has scarily given me a real urge to revisit the rest now.

Is there any hope for me?

*So excited in fact that he did a 'mod' of main character Claire Redfield so you can play the entire game with her just wearing her underwear.


**Scary but true - Soldier which was written by David Peoples, who co-wrote the script for Blade Runner is considered to be an unofficial sequel/prequel to it,

Not only does the film subtlety reference the stories of Philip K. Dick but it also features a Spinner from Blade Runner amongst the background wreckage on the planet.

And if that wasn't enough, Kurt Russell’s character is shown to have fought in the battles referenced in Roy Batty’s (Rutger Hauer) famous monologue - the Shoulder of Orion and Tannhäuser Gate - leading to some film fans to assume that they are, in fact, one in the same character.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

flaming alf.

The Coronavirus cine capers continue.....

Well that was short and to the point.

Just like yer maw.

Actually this is an oldie but a bloody goodie that I'm surprised more folk don't rave about.

I'm less worried about her getting the virus and more worried that she'll get a chill in her tummy (or a bad reputation) wearing that top.

Undead (2003).
Dir: Michael and Peter Spierig.
Cast: Felicity Mason, Mungo McKay, Rob Jenkins, Lisa Cunningham, Dirk Hunter and Emma Randall.

"When I was a kid, we fuckin' respected
our parents, we didn't fuckin' eat 'em!"

Welcome to the sleep fishing town of Berkeley in Western Australia, to the local population it's home but to everyone else it's the arse end of dullsville, the only great thing about it being the road out.

Think Dudley but with better (any?) teeth.

One of these non-believers is the towns former Miss Catch of the Day pin-up Rene (the Tefal browed Mason, best known as the voice of Audrey the Activist in the 'hit' online series Team Trashe), struggling to keep up payments on her late parents farm and dreaming of a new life in the big city.

Things aren't going well for our soon to be heroine at the moment tho' seeing as she's stuck in a horrendous meeting with the beefy and balding Mr. Chip Loan at the local bank, who  sits sweatily eyeing up poor Rene as she begs for an extension on her payments and,  after exhausting her patented female mix of giving huge puppy dog eyes and wistful sighs she ends up storming out to her friend Johnny Deadsoon's car determined to leave her troubles behind.

And with that bit of backstory out of the way we can begin.

(Poppy) eyes son.

Driving along the main road and out of town Rene soon begins to notice the sky getting darker and darker (and more blatantly CGI-ed) as the sound of thunder rumbles in the distance.

But that's not the only bizarre weather-based thing occurring as suddenly storms of burning meteorites descend from the heavens disrupting the local cricket match, destroying shops, frying children and turning the locals into flesh starved undead things.

So far so good.

Coming across (insert 'not literally' joke here) a nasty pile-up in the middle of the road Johnny pulls over and gets out the car to investigate and it's not long before the poor sod has been nibbled to death by a shite moothed, blank eyed, shambling pre-teen zombie.

With really bad hair.

Some folk have all the luck.

Beating the child to death with a steering wheel lock Rene heads off towards a nearby (and very run-down) farmhouse quick style.

"Shite in mah undead, pre-teen mooth ya bastard!"

Far from being deserted tho' the farmhouse belongs to the local monosyllabic mentalist Marion (McKay, ball faced star of Malibu Shark Attack), owner of Marion's World of Weapons and winner of the fishy beard of the year award three years running.

Luckily for Rene, Marion recognises these bizarre events as a sign of alien invasion as it appears that years ago, whilst fishing for carp the poor sod was abducted by a group of extraterrestrials under similar circumstances and since then he's been training and preparing for their return.

There's no time for introductions tho' (or any more character development than is absolutely necessary) because no sooner has Marion pulled a gun on Rene whilst muttering something slight yet meaningful in a rather gruff manner that ever more cliche riddled survivors turn up.

Enter pregnant beauty queen Sallyanne (Cunningham from Daybreakers), her hick helicopter pilot Wayne (hat wearing Jenkins), foul mouthed, bad ass, big shorted copper Harrison (The New Adventures of Flipper's Hunter) and fragile flower rookie police officer (plus token cutsie red head) Molly (ex set decorator, stop motion goddess and all round art queen Randall).

"He did WHAT in his cup?"

If the fact that the sky wasn't full of flaming meteors and the town full of zombies wasn't enough to upset everyone then the sudden heavy rainfall is.

But this is no ordinary rain, no sir.

I mean it's computer generated for a start.

You see it soon becomes apparent that this downpour not only burns skin but picks up people and animals at random in a kinda squishy shower like tractor beam.

Could things get any worse?

Bardot are looking a wee bit rough.

Deciding the best course of action is to make a Vegemite sandwich (or whatever it is these Aussie types eat) the groups attempts at making lunch are foiled when a team of scruffy undead tramps burst into the house looking for fresh meat to chow down on.

With Harrison shouting "Fuck!" at every given opportunity whilst flashing his knobbly knees to all and sundry Marion (quietly) takes command and leads everyone into his cellar cum lead lined bunker to formulate an action plan.

Think The Apprentice only with stinky beards, over the knee socks and a distinct lack of tottie and you're halfway there but probably only a quarter as entertaining*.

With the majority of the group agreeing that staying put is probably the best option it's down to Sallyanne and her rather inconvenient (under the circumstances) pregnancy to get in the way.

You see she reckons that she's about to pop a sprog at any second which may hamper any long term ideas about hiding out till it's all over.

There's only one clean towel for a start and the nearest they have to clean water is the sweat that they can mop from between Molly's ample (and sexily freckled) cleavage.

After a quick think (and helped along by Harrison waving his weapon about) everyone decides to make a break for Marion's van and attempt to drive out of town.


Nigel Mansell farted....and it was an eggy one.

Upon arrival at the town border it's fair to say that the group are fairly surprised to find that a mile high metal barrier lined with razor sharp spikes has been built surrounding the whole of Berkeley.

Marion blames the aliens that allegedly abducted him whilst Harrison is quick to point the finger at the bin men.

Sallyanne just sits cradling her stomach gurning like a loon.


As the acid rain continues to drench the town and members of the group begin to fall foul of the heavenly tractor beams it's left to Rene and Marion to discover a cure to the undead terror destroying Berkeley and uncover the secret behind the mysterious glowing monks hiding in the shadows....

As cheap as chips and as tasteful as a Dingo's dinner, the Spierig brothers second feature (before hitting the big time with the Ethan Hawke starrers Daybreakers and Predestination**) is a delightful mix of 1950's alien paranoia and 1980's pre-cert horror with an added dash of Evil Dead style black comedy lovingly wrapped in an old pair of Paul Hogan's pants.

Yes it's slight and indeed it's throwaway but if it's ninety minutes of no brainer, laugh now giggles you're after then you could do worse than watch this.

Plus it's a damn sight more entertaining than the prospect of another seaon of The Walking Dead.

Or even Waking The Dead.

Not sold?

Well tough, because I'm not going to give away too about the numerous golden moments in the movie by mentioning the scenes of exploding old ladies, groan inducing shopfronts with names like Elvis Parsley’s Grapeland, Felicity Mason in soaking undies, streets awash with gore and the best (if only) tramp bearded John Woo tribute I've ever seen on celluloid.

Go on, watch it now.

It wont change your life but it may make a little bit of wee squirt out at certain points.

And if you're honest, what more can you ask for from a cinematic experience during a global pandemic?

*Must admit I've not watched the show for years but if I'm honest I'd pay good money (at least £15) to see former Junior Apprentice Goddess Zoe Plummer oiled up in a vest cradling a machine gun lead a group of contestants thru' a heaving throng of the undead as Lord Sugar barks insults at them from the boardroom.

But perhaps that's just me.

Zombie zapping
Zoe Plummer: sorted.

**Before pissing any good will well and truly up the wall with the utterly pointless SAW sequel Jigsaw.

Monday, April 13, 2020

flesh gore-dom.

Noticed t'other day that Full Moon Pictures had recut/redubbed bits of this movie (alongside news footage of Donald Trump and footage from Zombies vs Strippers) and hastily popped it online under the title Corona Zombies in a vain attempt to make a cash-grab from the ongoing global pandemic.

Which is fair enough I guess, I mean I'm desperately trying to get new/any readers with the same idea.

Tho' obviously folk giving me money would be nice too.

Piracy - and a distinct lack of imagination - is a crime. Probably.

So I thought, what the hell, I'll re-purpose this old review under the corona time banner and join in the fun.

But before we start let me just get my favourite quote from this (any?) movie out of the way first:

"She may not know much about chemistry, but in bed, her reactions are terrific!" 

Good, now we can begin.

It's part 20 (!?) of my Corona-baiting blockbuster season and we're bringing out the big guns.

And by big guns I mean Frank Garfeeld's man-breasts.


Tho' I may actually be referring to the M-16 assault rifles carried by him and José Gras during the film.

You decide.

Zombie Creeping Flesh (AKA Apocalipsis caníbal, Zombi 5: Ultimate Nightmare, Hell of the Living Dead, Inferno dei morti-viventi, Virus, Cannibal Virus 1980)
Dir: Bruno Mattei (AKA Vincent Dawn)
Cast: Margit Evelyn Newton, Frank 'Garfeeld', José Gras, Josep Lluís Fonoll, Gabriel Renom, Bob Carolgees and Selan Karay.

This cover scared the living shite out of me as a kid. Fact.

Somewhere (cheap to film) in sunny Papua New Guinea lies a top secret research facility called The Hope Centre where armies of underpaid and overworked Italian extras spend their days dressed in ill-fitting lab coats and children's Bob The Builder hats whilst ooh-ing and aah-ing over a variety of flashing lights and diode meters.

Which if I'm honest is possibly the best job in the world.

Well it would be if it weren't for the scary puppet rat that takes a fancy to one of the poor supporting artistes (who looks way too much like Harry H. Corbett for my liking) nostrils and in a vain attempt to have nose sex with him causes a bad dad gas leak that turns the entire staff into flesh-eating zombies.

Is there any other kind tho?

"There's a rat in the kitchen dirty old man!"

Cue the Goblin score to Dawn of The Dead coupled with some felt-tip titles that take us half way across the world - or 15 miles down the road - to some unnamed banana republic where the heroically chinned and scarily hairy backed Lt. Mike London (José Gras, the star of Mad Foxes) and his Quick Fit overalled four man anti-terrorist squad are being deployed to eliminate a group of sweaty, bearded working class types who've taken the directors family hostage inside the local council offices.

These tinker terrorists are demanding the closing down of every Hope Centre in the world due to them being a cover for something bad (probably making 5G masts), which of course both the government and the military deny.

Well they would wouldn't they?

Luckily for us that world-renowned science expert, Made In Chelsea's Lucy Watson is on the case in 'the real life'.

Aren't we lucky?

This is what being tired of experts gets you. Hope you're proud of yourselves.

Anyway back to the plot and bored with sitting about looking manly, London and co. fire tear gas into the building before bursting in and machine gunning all the bad guys.

In the face.

Fuck yeah.

Children beware, their Jeep is not full of sweets.

Once the mission is completed and the bodies bagged our heroes receive an important communiqué from whichever fascist police state they work for informing them that all communication with Hope Centre has been lost and, seeing as this wannabe A-Team is a far as the budget can stretch when it comes to supplying a small army, they've to head out to New Guinea right away.

On arrival our oddly hatted he-men take in the scenery and wildlife as they drive aimlessly around what looks like a kiddies sandpit, failing totally to notice that a number of animals they encounter are all moving in slow motion on differentiating qualities of film stock whilst others just stand in the background as tho' stuffed.

An effect of the chemical leak surely?

There's unfortunately not enough time to discuss this because it's about now that we meet bubble haired journalist Lia Rousseau (Newton from The Last Hunter) and her cameraman Barney (ex-Tiswas star Carolgees), who're busy chasing the same story.

I mean the Hope centre one by the way, not the actual film plot because that would be a waste of time and effort on all parts.

Anyway, London (the character not the city obviously), realizing that Rousseau's breasts will probably be the most entertaining things we're going to see in the next 90 minutes offers to take them along for the ride.

Magrit Evelyn Newton's tits yesterday.

As their journey takes them ever closer to the facility (encountering amongst other things, even more grainy and scratchy stock footage of animals and even grainier stock footage of African tribes plus a few - none stock footage - zombies), London's crack team come across (not in that way tho' it'd brighten things up) a native village that's been recently attacked by persons unknown.

No chance it could be zombies then?

Our haircut dodging heroes desperately need information on the attack if they're to stand any chance of completing their mission and as luck would have it, Lia not content with being the video nasty equivalent of Anne Diamond is also a trained anthropologist, specializing in the tribes of New Guinea.

How convenient is that?

As we all know, the best way to communicate with a primitive tribe is to strip stark bollock (or in this case boob) naked, cover your breasts and face in poster paint and then just waltz on into town.

Frank Sidebottom always enjoyed judging the annual Ms. Timperly competition.

You may laugh but it seems to do the trick, as the team are all invited for dinner and the chance to sit thru' some stock footage (surprise) of various tribal burial rights before rounding off the evenings entertainment with a wee bit of a dance.

Luckily some zombies turn up (finally) giving our heroes a chance to quickly drive away whilst the defenseless villagers are violently massacred.

Which is nice.

Stopping a short while later (far enough away that they can't hear the screams) London and his boys decide to rest up in a deserted plantation where hopefully they can find some supplies and maybe even a ballet tutu or two (too).


It seems that the bald pated Lt. Oswald Osbourne (Fonoll) has gone a wee bit fruit loops due to the intense heat and is desperate to find his feminine side.


Rooting around the building in search of some old ladies underwear to change into, Osbourne discovers whom he takes to be the plantation owner, a wrinkly old woman, asleep in a rocking chair.

Moving slowly closer (well your hole is your hole after all) our lewd Lieutenant is shocked to find that the uncomfortable hardness of his throbbing manhood isn't the only thing stiff in the room...the old biddy is dead and the rocking motion is due to an ickle pussy cat eating its way thru' her chest.

Gah indeed.

And just when you thought things couldn't get any more uncomfortable, the Zimmer using zombie stands up and slowly totters towards a visibly repulsed Osbourne whilst pulling a terrifying cum face.

It's like waking up with your Gran's face buried in the damp muskiness of your crotch.


What your dad really gets up to on his darts night.

Screaming like wee lassies at a Gary Glitter concert the team barely make it out alive, in fact poor old Osbourne doesn't, he's unfortunately killed whilst wearing a top hat and a green ballet tutu as the house is quickly overrun - well as quickly as zombies can totter - by the undead.

Eventually, Rousseau, her bullet-like nipples rubbing against her rough yet functional cheesecloth blouse and the remains of London's team battle their way to a local boating lake cum kiddies paddling pool where, after commandeering a dingy begin the final leg of their journey to the Hope Centre.

And it's about fucking time if I'm honest.

Inside Michael Barrymore's mind.

Paddling ever nearer to the complex it soon becomes apparent (thanks to even more stock footage, this time of what looks like a school PTA meeting) what the Hope Centre project actually entails.

It seems that their top secret plan to alleviate world hunger actually involves harvesting the bodies of the dead as a cheap food source.

Soylent Green anyone?

Ironically tho', with the chemical leak causing the dead to rise the worlds starving will now devour us.

Hang on, that's a wee bit serious for this kind of film isn't it?

"Laugh now!"

Suffice to say that when they finally reach the Centre things go from bad to very bad via a quick trip to badsville; the scarily Argento fringed Zantoro (Frank Garfeeld AKA Franco Garofalo AKA The Nipples from Naples) - after spending the rest of the film turned up to eleven finally blows - going so far over the top that his performance can only be viewed from the Hubble telescope whilst good old Mike London appears to suddenly gains 2 stone (pesky reshoots) which he then takes out on poor Lia.

If anything she should be angry seeing as his tits are now bigger (and considerably juicer) than hers.

Whilst all this sweaty arguing is going on, literally dozens (OK a few) zombies randomly jump out of lifts and cupboards (but obviously don't shout) picking off - and pissing on - the survivors one by one, leaving the zombie hordes to take over the world and Lia's head being used as a novelty bowling ball.

"Aye hen!"

Nothing like finishing on an upbeat note eh?

Different title, same movie, scarier cover.

Once again the late (as in dead, not that he's terrible time keeper) great Bruno Mattei proves to the world that a lack of budget, imagination and common sense are no boundary to producing a rip-roaring, terrifyingly taunt movie.

Unfortunately it just wasn't with this one, I must have been thinking of The Tomb.

Only joking.*

Working under the pseudonym Vincent Dawn - in a thinly veiled tribute to George Romero - Mattei would continue to use this moniker till the end of his career and what a career it was seeing as it took in everything from Lovecraftian mummies, Nazisploitation, saucy Roman epics, women in prison, combat shockers and big rats as well as the undead.

Plus in his later years he introduced the world the gloriously button-nosed Yvette Yzon in his Dawn of The Dead/Alien mash-ups Island of The Living Dead and it's confusingly titled sequel Zombies: The Beginning

Indeed this man achieved everything you could ever wish for basically.

Including bedding your mates attractive mum.


Bruno and his very own Ripley, the fantastic (and fantastically smooth thighed) Yvette Yzon.

Anyway, back to the movie in hand.

Lets be frank here, it's rare to get such a bad film that actually delivers the entertainment factor so perfectly - everything about it screams train wreck - from barely adequate gore effects, ludicrously stiff dialogue and stilted dubbing - "You're beginning to bug me, kiddo - just don't break my balls!" - unnecessary nudity, dodgy face-painting, a stolen score, stock footage pilfered from such places as Nuova Guinea: Isola Dei Cannibali and the directors holiday films via a fantastic collection of ill fitting hats.

This film has all this and more besides.

But despite (because?) of all this the whole sad affair actually works.


Scarily enough tho' the film was originally envisioned as a big budget ecological horror thriller - it's original draft features the entire third world becoming zombies taking on the armed might of the industrialized nations - think Soylent Green with zombies and the budget of Avatar, but - as is always the way with these things - when the producers discovered that between them they could only scrape together £6.80 and that Charlton Heston hadn't returned their calls they realized that a major rethink - and rewrite - would be needed.

Enter Mattei (not literally you sick bastard he's been dead for over 5 years) who alongside the hack-tastic master of the macabre Claudio Fragasso soon had the entire project re-jigged to more suit the more, um, modest budget assigned to it.

And more importantly got a cast that would work for food.

Or in José Gras' case cheap cooking sherry.


And from such problems a work of true cinematic genius was born.

An average Daily Mail headline yesterday.

The films troubles didn't end with it's budget problems, sub-literate cast and lack of suitable head wear tho' as upon release in the UK Zombie Creeping Flesh was quickly pounced on by the evil forces of the DPP and unfairly (and messily) tarred with the 'video nasty' brush before being bundled into a box next to an ex-rental copy of Night Train Murders.
Night Train Murders: A little bit of chicken in a box.
But like the zombies it portrays so realistically, the critics found Zombie Creeping Flesh hard to kill as over the years, it's somewhat tarnished reputation as a perfectly formed end of the pier style, totally craptastic shocker has grown to a point where it's fans now number in the dozens.
And what other movie has the balls to feature a ending where a zombie pushes its fist into the heroines screaming mouth, forcing its fingers up through her face before poking out her eyeballs?

Not Trolls World Tour that's for sure.

Top quality entertainment for all the family.

 *Or am I?

Sunday, April 12, 2020

hop to it.

It's Easter Sunday so it has to be.....

Night of The Lepus (AKA Rabbits. 1972).
Dir: William F Claxton.
Cast: Stuart Whitman, DeForest Kelley, Janet Leigh, Melanie Fullerton, Chris Morrell, some rabbits (obviously)  and Rory Calhoun.

Attention! Attention! There is a herd of killer rabbits headed this way and we desperately need your help!

Can I just say that on those rare occasions when a movie opens with grainy, documentary footage of big hunky men armed with large pointy sticks slowly advancing on some fluffy bunnies whilst an oh so serious voice over tells of the famine and disasters caused by 'rabbit plagues' over the years you know you're about to experience something special.

And no I don't mean Mr Tumble stumbling about shit-faced in a car park whilst signing 'cheap booze' at an anorak-clad moppet.

Tho' admittedly that would be worth seeing.

And who knows, the great man himself may even turn up in this film at some point.

I mean stranger things have happened.

But I digress.

A wee bit like the film actually as the almost Blair Witch/Alternative 3 style shockumentary footage is quickly replaced by a grainy shot of a field somewhere in the American mid-west where a group of disinterested extras are rounding up a group of painfully bored rabbits.

Indeed cinema doesn't get any more exciting - or Leporidae obsessed - than this.

But is there a reason for all this bunny bothering?

Well yes there is as it soon transpires that the local rabbit farm has been destroyed by fire meaning that the rascally rabbits are all making a bid for the prairie and freedom.

This in turn is upsetting the local cow poke because their horses keep falling down the rabbit holes and breaking their legs.

Luckily the local ranch owner Cole Hillman (Calhoun - don't judge) owns a big gun and is quite happy to go around shooting any fallen foles in the face.

Well until he realizes that if it continues the whole town will be skipping about banging coconuts together if a better remedy isn't found soon.

The real McCoy? (sorry).

Luckily a local pair of entomologists, Lenny Bennett and his wife Elizabeth (an unusually sober Whitman and an obviously slumming it Leigh) alongside their pal Eglin Clark (Kelley) offer their expertise in order to solve the rabbit problem.

But which course of action will they follow?

A. Hire the Elmer Fudd like, gun crazed Cole to go out and shoot them all.

B. Rabbit poison.

C. Use a never before tested experimental DNA-altering serum that could cause hideous mutations.

Reckoning that blindly tampering with nature on a genetic scale is more environmentally sound than poison they plum for the serum, which the Bennett's decide to test on their young daughter Amanda's pet rabbit first.

What caring parents.
The company that make these refused to put "Shite in mah mooth!" on it. Killjoys.

Amanda, as you can probably guess, is slightly upset by the thought of her dad sticking something in her pet so to this end sneaks into her parents lab and kidnaps the rabbit under cover of darkness.

As in at night obviously, not whilst disguised as Justin Hawkins but to be honest that may have brightened up the movie a wee bit.

Heading over to the Hillman ranch she soon comes across Cole's permanently scowling son Jackie (current resident of Chesapeake, VA and father of 3 Morrell in his only film role) who wrestles the rabbit from the poor girls grasp before popping it down a nearby rabbit hole unknowingly setting in motion a deadly series of events the likes of which the world has never seen.

And probably never wanted to anyway.

It's only a matter of time (well it is a short movie) before the local towns folk discover that their carrot patches have all been dug up and that a number of locals start turning up dead with huge incisor marks over their bodies.

Could these things be related?

Well most of the locals are so it wouldn't surprise me.

After a quick scientific natter our heroes decide that the serum must have mutated the rabbits to giant size.

Oh and turned them into ferocious meat eaters.

Which is nice.

Surprisingly everyone completely accepts this explanation without question.

They don't even get angry, just shrug their - collective - shoulders and begin to plan a counter-attack.

You've gotta love those plucky Americans.

"Fuck me! It's George Galloway!"

Meanwhile the rampant rabbits are on the move - in slow motion to add to the menace obviously -  first eating a not only a truck driver but the entire contents of his truck before chowing down on an unfortunate group of campers and finally setting up home in an abandoned lemonade mine.

Following the trail of corpses and carrot tops our heroes soon find the loopy Leporid's lair and quickly agree that the best course of action would be to blow the furry fuckers sky high with dynamite.

But as is always the way in movies like this they decide to go and explore the mine first in the vain hope of finding some vintage lemonade bottles and therefore make a few quid on the side.

Makes sense I guess.

"Lick yer lips luv!"

Stumbling about in the dark for what seems like days whilst the crew scrape enough cash together for a halfway decent matte shot Lennie and Cole do eventually come across the rabbits and stop to take a few selfies with them.

No, really.

Not too surprisingly the camera flash coupled with incredulous cries of "Fuck me! look at the size of the ears on that!" wake the brutish bunnies who then give chase - well give hop - after our heroes.

Scrambling out of the mine in the nick of time the pair detonate the explosives burying the rabbits under tonnes of rock and Cadbury's Caramel Wrappers.

Admit it....

With a spring in their step and a song in their hearts everyone returns to the ranch for a celebratory evening of cake eating, cousin kissing and moonshine moothing safe in the knowledge that the rabbit threat is no more.

The party is interrupted by a knock at the door and Cole, expecting a delivery from the Davenports man goes to answer it.

But it's not a delivery of booze but the rabbits, returned and ready for revenge.
Scarily it turns out that in all the excitement of explosions, cakes and whatnot everyone appears to have forgotten the fact that rabbits are actually quite well known for digging.

We've all done it.

Running to the barn to find his remaining horses eaten, Cole decides to leg it to the nearest town for help but on arrival finds it spookily deserted save the big brooding shadows of giant bunnies staring at him from the darkened windows of the local pub.

"Did you spill my pint?"

Brave Cole slowly tiptoes to a pay phone and calls the National Guard whispering the immortal lines "There's a herd of killer rabbits in town and we desperately need your help!"

Will the combined strength of the US military and the surviving townsfolk be enough to repel the might of the Lepus or will they eventually defeat humanity, hopping across the entire Earth like furry, big eared stormtroopers.

But let's be honest do you really care?

From writer/producer/director William F. Claxton (best known for his work on Little House on the Prairie, Bonanza and The High Chaparral amongst other TeeVee hits) Night of the Lepus is one of those rare movies that needs to be seen - with witnesses obviously - to be believed.

Terrifyingly neither tongue in cheek or camply humorous, the movie was made as if everyone involved actually thought that the scariest thing in the world would be if giant killer rabbits existed.

And I for one raise my glass to them.

If not question their sanity.

"Laugh now!"

There's really nothing you can add to the above description as any criticism seems redundant in the face of what's on screen so I'll leave the last word to
Lee Sollenberger, one of the films FX crew who was once interviewed (by trading standards no doubt) about the films grueling shoot and enduring legacy.

"Anyone who has ever worked with animals knows how difficult it can be. "Lepus" was a very difficult film to do. We worked in tremendous heat conditions and had hundreds of rabbits to deal with. It was a fun film for the trainers I think because no one had done a horror film with rabbits before".Or it turns out, since.

A misjudged gem of a movie.

And by that I mean utterly shite in every way.