Shitty Movie Sundays: The Demolitionist

When I set out on this crusade to raise awareness of the merits of shitty movies, I never expected to write about two films in a row featuring Richard Grieco, but here we are. He’s not the star of today’s film. Rather, he is the most electric member of the cast. So sorry, Nicole Eggert.

From 1995 comes The Demolitionist, the directorial debut from longtime special effects makeup artist Robert Kurtzman. It’s a Robocop ripoff. There’s not much more to it than that. It is also an ambitious flick, with a decent title, some outrageous performances, and a hot lead who tries her best. Continue readingShitty Movie Sundays: The Demolitionist”

October Horrorshow: Halloween 5

What a putrid mess. Halloween 5 is a shameless cash grab. (The full title is Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers, but that full title seems only to exist on posters and other promotional material. The title card of the actual movie has no subtitle.) Halloween 4 was a cheap b-movie that sought to bring a recognizable brand to heel after the failure that was Halloween III. And it worked. Audiences didn’t like the fact that Michael Myers wasn’t the villain in the third flick, and producer Moustapha Akkad took notice. He brought back the slasher icon for the fourth installment, and saw a tidy return on investment, so it was inevitable that there would be a fifth. Of course, since abject cheapness didn’t hurt the bottom line with Halloween 4, there was no incentive to produce a quality product with Halloween 5.
Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Halloween 5″

October Horrorshow: Piranha 3D

It’s October, when calm nights are suddenly pierced by screams, unseen malevolent presences terrorize entire families, crazed masked murderers stalk virginal teenagers, and Missile Test celebrates all that is evil in the world with the October Horrorshow, a month’s worth of horror film reviews. A good horror film? We’ll watch it. A bad horror film? Bring it on. An absolutely putrid pile of dog shit that had no business being produced at all? Yep, we’ll delve into those, too. Because the only thing that matters during the October Horrorshow is that there’s blood. And today’s selection has plenty of that, and not much else worth watching. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Piranha 3D”

October Horrorshow: From Dusk Till Dawn, or, a Tale of Two Movies

From Dusk Till DawnOctober has come again. It being the month of Halloween, we at Missile Test choose to celebrate by watching and reviewing horror films. Ah, blood. There just can’t be enough in October. Today’s selection has plenty of it, even though it’s mostly green. But what the hell, it’s all in fun.

Quentin Tarantino was riding high after the success of Pulp Fiction, a film that had a strong case for winning Best Picture at the Oscars the year it came out. Was it Tarantino’s youth which kept his opus from taking home the top prize? Who knows? Some of the competition were no slouches in their own right, but none broke any new ground, nor did they spawn a whole genre of imitations that crop up in cinema to this day (just like Alien and all its clones). And the winner that year, Forrest Gump, felt like little more than the Baby Boomers trying to justify their actions in retrospect by infusing their youths with blandness and innocence, when naiveté (with a sharp edge, at least) would have been a more apt description. This trivializes the profound role they played in turning public opinion against the war in Vietnam, but their role was not nearly as important as that played by the news media who brought home the images of war to the American public. The youth had always been suspicious, and were never onboard with the war policy from the beginning, but every other demographic in America couldn’t have given two shits if we had been winning the war instead of losing it. Anyway, I honestly can’t tell if that film was an apology to their parents or an apology to the directionless void of malaise left behind by their sudden thrust into real adulthood that was then passed on to their slacker Gen X children. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: From Dusk Till Dawn, or, a Tale of Two Movies”

October Horrorshow: Diary of the Dead

Diary of the DeadThe October Horrorshow rolls on here at Missile Test, when we devote the entire month of October to watching and reviewing horror films. The good, the bad, and the putrid all have a viewing. With this review we wrap up the run of zombie films made by George A. Romero. Sure, we’ve been reviewing them out of order, but it doesn’t really matter.

Diary of the Dead, from 2007, is Romero’s followup to Land of the Dead. For whatever reason, Romero regressed when it came to his budget with this film. Land of the Dead wasn’t exactly a blockbuster production, but it did recoup its $15 million budget three times over, yet Diary of the Dead was made with the paltry amount of $2 million. A cut in resources like this isn’t normally made by choice, but Romero did decide to make this an experimental film of sorts, so maybe it was on purpose.

Anyway, Diary of the Dead takes place on the eve of the zombie outbreak that began during Romero’s first zombie flick, Night of the Living Dead. With each of his Dead films, Romero has played fast and loose with the real world timeline when it comes to the zombie apocalypse, which is why the outbreak in his films occurs in the 1960s, ’70s, and 2000s. In that way, his story of the outbreak is timeless. Despite the intervening years between releases, all films take place within the same continuity. That’s only a flaw if one lets it be so. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Diary of the Dead”

October Horrorshow: Day of the Dead

The zombie hordes have once again invaded the October Horrorshow here on Missile Test. After a short interlude that featured an amorphous blob, a ghostly pedophile, and a village full of children with psychic abilities, we return to the realm of the undead with George A. Romero’s second sequel to his groundbreaking film Night of the Living Dead, 1985’s Day of the Dead. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Day of the Dead”

October Horrorshow: Land of the Dead

Cracked.com recently featured an article about surviving a zombie apocalypse. It concluded that all we know and all we’ve learned about surviving from zombie horror films is wrong. Tactics such as raiding the local gun store and fleeing from cities have become so imprinted on our psyches, Cracked argues, that everyone will have the same ideas, and those ideas will serve to create nothing but the world’s largest smorgasbord for the undead. They have a point. Well, they would, if the danger of a zombie apocalypse were real. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Land of the Dead”