Archive for category New Reviews

Misses the mark

Direct HitDespite being a PM Entertainment production, Direct Hit is a lesser ’90s direct to video actioner.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.

New at 1000 Misspent Hours and Counting

Let’s start with the roundtable reviews:

Dead of Night (1945), the first classic horror anthology, released decades before there were enough of them to constitute a proper subgenre…

Dead of Night (1976), Dan Curtis’s somewhat feebler follow-up to the notorious Trilogy of Terror

and…

Nightmares (1983), one of the rare failed TV pilots to get elevated all the way to theatrical release.

 

As for the rest, we’ve got:

Christiane F. (1981), in which the teens of West Berlin shoot a whole lot of smack…

Critters (1986), in which the Hopkinsville Goblins are reinterpreted as the galaxy’s deadliest Muppets…

Destroy All Monsters (1968), which far from destroying them, gave the monsters a new lease on life…

The Funhouse (1981), in which we can naturally count on Tobe Hooper to deliver the grodiest horror movie fun fair of all time…

Green Room (2015), in which “gifted” isn’t quite the right word the youth which Patrick Stewart is mentoring this time…

Microwave Massacre (1983), which flogs you with the dumbest jokes you can imagine until eventually you start to think they might, just maybe, be funny after all…

Sole Survivor (1982), in which just dying in the damn plane crash is arguably the better deal…

and…

Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song (1971), in which Melvin Van Peebles might’ve known that only Huey Long was really going to get it.

 
 
 

El Santo rules the wasteland-- and also 1000 Misspent Hours and Counting.

Kidnapping is seldom this fun

The BetrayedThe kidnap drama The Betrayed has all the ingredients needed to be given sleeper status.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.

Badly conceived

PaternityWhile the Burt Reynolds comedy Paternity is thankfully not irritating like his worst yahoo comedies, the end results are all the same too bland and unsurprising to generate many laughs.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.

A serving of spirits

 

 
 

KWAIDAN (1964)

Kobayashi Masaki’s first colour film is an anthology of four ghost stories, in which the meetings of humans and spirits have an impact upon both.

Both chilling and sad in its implications, Kwaidan is also a stunning exercise in visual style.

 

 

 

Liz Kingsley is the insane genius behind And You Call Yourself a Scientist!

A different kind of monster mayhem

ArenaNot your typical hand-to-hand combat movie with aliens, Arena is one of the more enjoyable movies to come from Empire Pictures.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.

…but not enough for the viewer

A Billion For BorisWhile the family movie A Billion For Boris has a great premise, the overall execution does not really work despite a few nice touches here and there.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.

Just fantasy…and not enough of that

 

A Resurrected Review so old, I’m calling it as new!

(There is something genuinely new on the way, but personal issues have me running behind schedule…)

 

 

 

 

FLESH AND FANTASY (1943)

A spectacular cast and some gorgeous visuals can’t quite paper over the cracks in this half-hearted triptych examining destiny and self-determination.

However, the central story of the three, which finds palmist Thomas Mitchell telling sceptic Edward G. Robinson that he is doomed to commit murder, almost rescues the rest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liz Kingsley is the insane genius behind And You Call Yourself a Scientist!

Amicus Briefs

Room For One More: The B-Masters Get On the Omnibus

Asylum (1972)

When it comes to anthology horror films, there is one set of films that is likely to spring to mind immediately… a series of independent but closely related films, from a certain island nation that had become well-known for its horror films ever since the 1950’s.

That cycle, needless to say, is the 15-movie Philippine series called Shake Rattle and Roll. But there’s no way I have time to dive down that particular rabbit hole, so for now it’s time to talk Amicus.

Amicus Productions put out seven classic anthology films between 1965 and 1974, starting with Doctor Terror’s House of Horrors and ending with From Beyond the Grave. Asylum falls in the middle of the cycle, and as usual for Amicus it’s a film with an impeccable pedigree. Written by Robert Bloch and directed by Roy Ward Baker, it stars such impressive talents as Patrick Magee, Herbert Lom, Charlotte Rampling and Peter Cushing. It may not be the very best of the cycle, but in many ways it is unique, and it contains some memorably grisly images that are still potent today.

Will Laughlin is the Braineater.

Won’t have you seeing red

Russian RouletteThe thriller Russian Roulette is good enough that you could almost swear that it’s not Canadian.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.