Every month we discuss some of the best and worst cult films ever made, from the hits, classics, underground, grind house, and utterly obscure, from Full Moon, and Empire, to Cannon and American International, it’s all here, minus the popcorn, and car fumes.
Aliases: None Vestron Pictures
Directed by: Anthony Hickox Starring: Zach Galligan, Deborah Foreman, Dana Ashbrook, David Warner, Patrick McNee
The Plot is Afoot! A group of rotten teenagers are invited to a local “Waxwork” wax museum by its mysterious curator David Lincoln. Little do they know that each wax exhibit is a supernatural portal in to another realm composed of monsters and ghouls of many kinds. Before long young Mark and Sarah learn that the curator has sinister plans for the unwilling participants, and it’s now up to them with the help of a wheelchair bound historian to stop him and destroy the gallery of supernatural beings.
You have to give it to Synapse films. With the decline of physical media, more studios are open to delivering movie buffs the classics, and the obscure titles. Let’s face it, until now, no other major label would have ever made the “Violent Shit” collection available for mass consumption. At the end of the day, this five movie collection of shot on video horror gore films from Germany are strictly a niche release, but they’re at least there for everyone to view. While the “Violent Shit” movies, in fact, complete shit, they are also important cinematic relics. Back in the eighties, when Germany enacted heavy censorship on all film releases, including horror movies, that were cut for mass consumption, a bunch of indie filmmakers got together and made their own gory, graphic, and obscenely splatterific horror movies.
Despite a rocky start, “The Walking Dead” season seven was absolutely stellar, as we finally got to meet the man known as Negan. Since Season one most of the threats from outside haven’t shaken Rick and his group’s confidence. Hell, not even a town filled with cannibals could really shake Rick’s determination. It isn’t until Maggie was near death and the massive numbers of the Savior for Rick to be shaken at the core. Negan is a vicious monster who is just as organized and orderly as Rick and his group are. He commands big numbers, strikes fear in to the hearts of many, and is never afraid to demonstrate his wrath over others. Season seven saw Rick be knocked down, and find the courage to get back up again and fight for Alexandria. It was a compelling season and these are ten of the best moments that shocked, amazed, and gripped me.
A sequel to the 2011 video release Skeleton Key 3, this new film is in no way shape or form related to the Kate Hudson starring film from 2005. This film follows a man dealing with the (blue) zombie apocalypse while saddled with a demon sidekick/bully and a ragtag team of helpers. John Johnson, the man credited as the brain behind this film and the star of the film looks to be specialized in the anything goes/what the fuck type of horror films by the looks of his IMDB page. As this particular film is not listed and this reviewer will not be watching it again to pull the credits, the little bits of credits available on Midnight Releasing’s website are all that will be used to identify the players here.
Jonathan Straiton’s “Night of Something Strange” seems to exist only to test the audience’s gag reflexes and nothing more. There is no story, no main character, the narrative is a mess, the pacing is uneven, the zombies that Straiton conceives are so poorly fleshed out, and in the end when Straiton throws out the script to deliver a non-ending, the joke falls flat. To prove how inept the movie is, after the prologue we enter in to the main narrative with character Christine delivering a heaping helping of exposition, narrating the set up for the movie as she writes in her journal. The latter portion of the movie reveals that, no, she’s by no means the central character and final girl. It’s just unfocused badly drawn out dreck that makes the movie such a chore to endure.
David Cronenberg’s “Shivers” and “Rabid” are pseudo-erotic statements based around violent anomalies rooted in science fiction that are metaphors sexual elements of civilization. While “Shivers” was a lot about a parasite that unleashes taboos of human sexuality, “Rabid” is a very eerie metaphor for STD’s and what happens when a very promiscuous woman with a lust for blood begins spreading it around Canada. The late great Marilyn Chambers is enticing and alluring in the role of Rose, a buxom and beautiful young girl indulges in motorcycle riding with her boyfriend Hart. One day while riding the country side, the pair gets in to a vicious accident that leaves Rose deformed.
If you hate zombie movies, and think there’s nothing left in the sub-genre, you’ll be surprised with Yeon Sang-ho’s “Train to Busan” and what it does with big budget zombie movies. Director Yeon Sang-ho practices the tradition of George Romero’s horror movies with thick social commentary, while also tapping in to the blockbuster crowds and proves you can have one without losing the value of the other. “Train to Busan” came completely out of left field for me back in 2016, and was not only the best horror movie of the summer, but one of the best movies of the year, easily. Yeon Sang-ho explores how a massive society is destroyed by flesh eating, rabid zombies, all of whom are relentless and charge rapid fire at their victims from around corners.
Most horror fans agree by now that most creative minds have pretty much tapped the zombie well dry, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t a lot of filmmakers still trying to reinvent the wheel. “Attack of the Lederhosen Zombies” does not re-invent the wheel and probably won’t change anyone’s mind on zombie movies, but for devotees of the sub-genre, there’s a lot of fun to be had. There’s some good music, a brisk pace, and a different setting beyond the typical country farm house or city back drop. Two snowboarders head out to the Swiss Alps with their manager Branka to film a publicity video for their corporate sponsor. When snowboarder and slacker Steve botch’s the filming altogether, the trio are left on the mountain, stranded.