Thursday, October 24, 2019

snake eyes.

Ended up watching this whilst trying to finish up some work t'other night.

It was late, I was tired and just couldn't be arsed turning it off.

So it's my own fault obviously.

Welcome to the continuing saga of 31 days of horror.

Brennan: Not you.

Tho' as a plus point it does feature a stand out performance from Joy Bang who looks a wee bit like top teen crush Peggy Lee Brennan from Message from Space.

In a certain light.

And if you squint.

Night of The Cobra Woman (1972).
Dir: Andrew Meyer.
Cast: Joy Bang, Marlene Clark, Roger Garrett, Vic Diaz, Rosemarie Gil, Vic Silayan and Slash Marks.

“I don’t know about you chicks running around cockfights but take off your dress.”

Welcome to a World War II torn Philippines (where life is cheap but film stock - and people willing to get their tits out for coppers - is cheaper) where army nurse Lena Aruza (Ex missis Billy Dee Williams Clark) and her equally nursey pal Francisca (Gil, currently starring as Doña Carmen Cortes in the hit teevee show Ngayon at Kailanman) have decided to take a break from saving soldiers to explore the local caves.

As you do.

Well Lena is exploring the caves as poor Francisca is scared of the dark so decides to sit on a rock and watch out for any evil Japanese types who may be skulking about.

Unfortunately as she's sitting adjusting her hat who should sneak out of the shadows but cult Filipino film star and professional bad guy Vic Diaz who grabs the poor girl before roughly putting it in her before shooting her in the tummy.


The gunshot startles a sleeping cobra in the cave who in turn bites Lena's (ample) arse but rather than kill her the venom imbues her with magical powers which she then uses to save her pal.

Sounds legit.

"I can see your house from here Peter!"

There's no time to think about any of that tho' as we're suddenly transported thru' time (via the medium of fim, not in reality obviously) to the 'modern day' where the toothsome student and UNICEF researcher Joanna (Bang - the reason we are here) is busy helping her kindly college professor Jeff Tezon (Silayan, creator of those little toy animal families that cost a fortune to collect) create (non-Autism causing) vaccines for snakebites.

Anyway it seems that during the course of her studies she'd heard about a reclusive old woman who owns an ultra-rare kind of snake (you can spot it by the shoddily marker penned diamond on its neck) that may have a venom that can cure stuff - or something - so decides to go visit her.

Arriving at the old ladies house she's greeted by an aged - well dipped in PVA glue) Francisca and told that as Lena (for the old snake lady is she) is meditating she can’t be disturbed so she should come back later.

Undeterred she decides to have a nosy around the garden where she's startled by a fat man in a set of comedy teeth and a too tight T-shirt dribbling and gurning from in a tree.

Turns out that this is Francisca's son Lope (Diaz again), who unlike his dad is only interested in the flower on her hat.

Terrified at the thought of his sweaty sausage fingers anywhere near her Joanna beats a hasty retreat back to the car and heads home to prepare to meet her boyfriend, the scarily skinny Stan Duff (One time Laverne & Shirley guest star Garrett) who is flying in from America to visit her that very evening.

And by prepare I mean have a crafty wank whilst gazing at his photograph obviously.

You have to admit that if nothing else she has a packed day.

It's just a pity that none of it is very exciting to watch.

Not even the furtive fiddling.


Anyway, arriving at the airport just as Duff is picking up his luggage the pair have a girly hug n' kiss before firstly kidnapping an eagle that's sitting on a wall minding its own business and then offering a fellow American - Sergeant Angelus Merkle (Marks in his only film role outside the CCTV ones of him exposing himself in a kiddies playpark) - a lift into town seeing as his GI pals haven't turned up to get him.

Obviously worn out with all this action (and bird stealing) the pair head back to Joanna's room for some cuddling and stuff. and all whilst she wears really ill-fitting - yet oddly arousing - underwear.

The next day after Joanna has headed off to work Duff finds himself at a loose end so to amuse himself and maybe help his girlfriend out he decides to visit Lena himself in the hope of getting the information/venom/whatever the fuck it is/ that Joanna seeks so to this end puts on his best denim shirt and drives off to the village.

"Are you the farmer?"

As he's about to ring the doorbell tho' poor Duff is bitten by a deadly cobra and falls unconscious to the floor, luckily Lena appears just back from the local Aldi and sucks the venom out of him before putting him to bed to recover.

Worried about where her man has gotten to Joanna heads up to Lena's house and soon bumps into Francisca who, quite nonchalantly goes on to explain that Lena is an evil cobra woman cum deity whose psycho-sexual powers drain any man who sleeps with her and that Duff may be next on the list after Lope who is in fact Francisca's son.

Surprisingly Joanna takes all this information on face value and offers to steal some of the snake venom Lena's keeps in her drinks cabinet so that they can do something with it.


I honestly don't know.

She returns the next day with the eagle in tow (because eagles are the only creatures that can kill a cobra) and rings the bell only to be told - by Lena - that Duff's very tired after the biting and is still asleep but she should come back later.

Somehow (I wasn't paying attention) Joanna manages to steal the venom and leg it out of the house eager to meet up with Francisca but as the pair chat the evil cobra (who may or may not be a supernatural being) leaps on the poor woman and bites her.

To death.

Cue an exciting - if not entirely ethical real-life snake on bird fight as the eagle kills the cobra whilst Joanna heads off to work to study the vial of venom.

"I love you....could it be magic?"

With her pet cobra killed Lena has no choice but to seduce Duff and make him her sex slave and draining his life force, you see it turns out that fucking random blokes till they whither and die is the only thing that stops her turning into a snake herself.

I think.

Unfortunately she needs to get the venom back from Joanna as that's the only thing that will restore Duff and make him fanciable again.


Honestly I really don't know as I was more interested in catching a glimpse of Joy Bang in her pants again.

Look I'm only flesh and blood.

So to this end Lena hatches a plan where Duff will head over to the lab to steal back the venom whilst she wanders around the local market picking up random guys to have sex with, peeling her ever growing snakeskin off as she goes.

Just like you'd peel glue off your fingers in school.

"Raff row!"

And so begins a race against time - and tedium - as Lena's psychopathic sexcapades continue and more and more local studs (as well as Sergeant Merkle, who it turns out is a wee bit rapey so no loss) fall prey to the evil cobra woman.....

Will Joanna find a cure?

Will Dr Tezon ever get to smoke a full fag?

Will anything remotely interesting actually happen?

Only one way to find out cos I'm not telling.

From the late, great (well OK late) actor/writer/producer/director Andrew Meyer comes a film hat's probably most famous for being the first Roger Corman produced Filipino fright flick.

And even he's uncredited.

Let that sink in for a second.

Scary eh?
Doubled up for its US release with the Mel Welles’ classic Lady Frankenstein, Night of The Cobra Woman feels like a strange hybrid of 30s monster movie and 50s sci-fi with added breasts and big pants hastily bunged together with a plot that's as nonsensical as it is convoluted.
And all that with a running time that's under 90 minutes.

I fang you.
It's not all bad tho' - only mostly - Marlene Clark gives it her all as the lizardy Lena whilst Joy Bang is her usual infinitely watchable self, Roger Garrett's performance on the other hand is so inconsequential and forgettable that they may have well as cast a scarecrow and had done with it.
His screen presence or lack of it may be due to the fact that he contracted a bizarre poultry infection whilst filming so I'll try not to be too harsh.

Nah fuck it he's shit.
But for every shite scene or eggbox effect there's a moment of true genius, like when Lena kills a topless farmer as a local guitarist jams in the background - nodding to the director as he waits for his cue to leave or when Lena upon attempting to seduce a street trader seductively lips her lips at his exposed arse crack.
Actually that's about it really.

But to be honest I can slag it off too much seeing as Andrew Meyer's first film - at the age of 23 - 'Match Girl' featured Andy Warhol in a starring role which is a fuck of a lot more than I achieved at that age.
Plus it does have a rather bookish heroine in glasses and big granny pants which is always a selling point.
Just me then?

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