Rupert Pupkin Speaks: VHS Gems: Halloween Hoedown (by Zack Carlson) ""

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

VHS Gems: Halloween Hoedown (by Zack Carlson)

Zack Carlson is a gentleman among slothy, frothy psychopaths(and a longtime friend of RPS). He has articulately demonstrated his Halloween spirit by putting together the remarkable list of VHS classics below.
 (Zack is the ringmaster of the Alamo Drafthouse's cute and cuddly Terror Tuesday  film series(as well as Zzang!!!))
Check out his other RPS lists too!


Goddangit. Many of my pals n' colleagues have already understandably swooped on some of the top VHS-only horror titles (i.e. THE TOWER, THE RITUAL OF DEATH), but there's still plenty of DVD-free whoopery to go around on this unholy night. The following are 13 unstoppable examples of the form, destined to shiver your timbers without the crutch of post-'80s technology!

(Dir. Efren C. PiƱon, 1983)
Don't be fooled by the crummy bootleg DVD on Amazon. This movie is pure, unrelenting, big box VHS Filipino fury!! A middle-aged man named Lando uses his magic elbow to defeat an army of Satan's minions, and then takes on the Big Red One himself in fearless hand-to-hand, lazer-eye combat. A heapin' helpin' of South Seas mythology mixes with '80s effects to send this one into the thermonuclear wildzone.

(Dir. Jag Mundhra, 1988)
A child is led to the occult by his Satanic grandfather (power-ham Hy Pyke), who operates under the guise of a lowly pumpkin salesman. As the boy becomes a man, he allows heavy metal cassettes to pull him further into the abyss. On Halloween night, he's expected to fulfill his dark destiny. This movie features heartbreaking nudity, live rock and stand-up comedy, each equally awful but as endearing as a legless kitten.

(Dir. Beverly Sebastian, 1984)
Continuing with rock horror! Second only to the venerable TRICK OR TREAT in pure metalpower, this thrasher-slasher from the married couple behind the GATOR BAIT films features an undead shredder returning to annihilate his former bandmates, punctuating each vicious homicide with a piercing rock n' roll shriek. Hairifying!

(Dir. Franco Prosperi, 1984)
Those goshdarn drug dealers have gone and flushed all their PCP straight down the terlet! Naturally, the narcoticized sewage line links directly to the local zoo's drinking water, and all the animals find themselves all jiggered up and ready to rage! Watch a spun-up cheetah knock a motorcyclist off his hog at 65 MPH! He's all like "Daaamn"!!

(Dir. Robert Scott, 1987)
The VHS-era life-remover that rewrote the rules of post-mortem warfare. These combative corpses exit through your picture tube and can only be defeated if you shoot them with three arrows. Homemade horror majesty to the ultramax. 
NOTE: There's a fakey unofficial DVD version on Amazon that looks like poop. Don't bite the hook.

(Dir. John Llewellyn Moxey, 1974)
TV-movie misanthropy starring Peter Graves (KILLERS FROM SPACE; POOR WHITE TRASH) as a well-meaning schlub who wakes up to an unpopulated Earth. Plenty of wasteland-wandering and city-spelunking in the not-so-ruined ruins of civilization. A masterpiece of Cold War end-days paranoia. The only thing more terrifying is a world with all the shitty, worthless people still in it.

(Dir. Kenneth J. Hall, 1990)
I really couldn't care less about cleavage and suggestive aerobics, but I can watch guys in rubber monster masks jump up and down all week long.

(Dir.Doug Robertson, 1991)
The absolute stinkiest play-on-words in VHS history! Also, a primitive slash-crazy mangulator concerning a Halloween funhouse being stalked by a vengeance-fueled nutzapoid.

(Dir. Jose Alcalde, 1984)
This decades-late Mexican lift of The Little Rascals features adorable chubby-cheeked munchkins racing shopping carts and irritating Dracula. The world's most malevolent bloodsucker basically plays Mr. Wilson to their Dennis the Menace. As a dumb white person, I can't tell what anyone in this movie is saying, but I bet they're slingin' some real humdingers 'cuz Dracula's pisssssed!!

(Dir. Renny Harlin, 1988)
Viggo Mortensen removes his shirt as often as possible to do battle with a possessed prison that mutilates, broils and electrocutes its inmates. From the director of DIE HARD II and several additional movies that aren't as good as PRISON.

(Dir. Oliver Drake, 1969)
A herd of drunk uncles stumble around Las Vegas wrapped in toilet paper and Egyptian jewelry. Essential!!

(Dir. Michael Fischa, 1989)
A furious dead witch possesses a gigantic, rectangular computer to unleash her wrath on a workout gym. Originally titled "Witch Bitch," and featuring an iconic moment where a weight machine tears open a beefy fella's ribcage just like it's no big thing.

(Dir. Bernard Launois, 1985)
I mentioned this one in a column here a couple years back, but I just can't leave it off this list. Mainly because this French slasher-Nazi transdimensional mummy opus with man-eating crabgrass and a ghost horse will forever alter your comprehension of movies. And film synopses.

1 comment:

zombivish said...

nice list, i've only even heard of a few, let a lone seen most of these. going have to hunt them down.
Video Dead i caught recently -i think it's still streaming on Netflix in the US and nice to see it's getting a real release via Scream Factory.
DEVIL STORY is one i've got and started to watch- jeez talk about nutso!