Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Film Discoveries of 2015 - Sarah Jane ""

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Film Discoveries of 2015 - Sarah Jane

Sarah Jane has seen over 4,700 movies. She is partial to exploitation genre. She originally hails from Southern California but it currently stuck somewhere in the South West. She had lived in England and in Austin, TX for a time. Sarah Jane once studied to be a script supervisor. She generally uses a lot of curse words in her writing. She doesn’t write reviews as much asshe just writes some crap about what she’s just watched. Her ramblings can be found at www.letterboxd.com/fookthis. Sarah Jane can also be found on Twitter at @FookThis.
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The Damned AKA These Are the Damned (1963) - Directed by Joseph Losey
“Black leather, black leather, smash smash smash
Black leather, black leather, kick kick kick...”

One of Hammer’s oddest entries. More science-fiction than horror. It stars MacDonald Carey and one very young and extremely handsome Oliver Reed. Reed, during this early period, is on fire. He oozes a sexy sinisterness that cannot be denied. Reed is the leader of a motorcycle gang who terrorizes Carey in a seaside town. Meanwhile, there is a top-secret military base just outside of the town and, naturally, they are up to some shenanigans with children hidden in caves. Say what?! It feels like they shot two different films and just merged them together but, no matter, Reed alone is worth the watch. It’s on a double-disc with another Hammer gem, “Never Take Sweets from a Stranger”.

Truck Turner (1974) – Directed by Jonathan Kaplan
I adore the Blaxploitation genre and how I managed to not watch Truck Turner before this year is beyond me. I kinda have a thing against Isaac Hayes because, you know, $cientology, but I loved this movie. Hayes plays an ex-NFL player turned bounty hunter. He’s after a pimp who has skipped out on his bail. Shit goes down, cats gets hurts, and Dick Miller shows up. I adore Yaphet Kotto and he does not disappoint. The real scene stealer was Nichelle Nichols. No one says "pussy" like she does.

10 to Midnight (1983) - Directed by J. Lee Thompson
Charles Bronson and Andrew Stevens star in this delicious piece of early 80s sleaze. Bronson plays a ‘damn the rules!’ cop, who gets a new partner (yes, that old saw). They are after a weirdo who is going around murdering women. The film is infamous for the sex toy that Bronson waves around. Really, it is worth watching just for that. There is no mystery here about who the killer is, we know from the start. He’s a creep who kills in the buff. Nothing more horrifying than a naked man in only running shoes coming after you with a knife. Jeana Tomasina shows up as one of the victims. Kelly ($cientologist) Preston is another of his victims. Rounding out the cast is Wilfred (Diabete$)Brimley, Geoffrey ($cientologist) Lewis, and Lisa Eilbacher

The Spider Labyrinth AKA "Il Nido del Ragno" (1988) – Directed by Gianfranco Giagni
The last 10 minutes of this film are batshit crazy and I loved it. It’s not really an outright Giallo, kind of a hybrid supernatural-Giallo. If you put Argento, Soavi, and Fulci in a blender you’d a get a big fucking mess but you’d also get this movie. Most of it doesn’t really make any sense and it doesn’t matter because of those last 10 minutes. Sadly, the version I saw was of poor quality. This movie is screaming for a remaster. 

Sssssss (1973) – Directed by Bernard L. Kowalski
Strother Martin and Dirk "I have the voice of a boy who hasn't reached puberty yet" Benedict star in this bad ass movie about snakes. Specifically, about Dr. Stoner, an ophiologist (look it up) who is crazy as a fucking loon; Strother Martin in a role that would not surprise you. He does some sort of research in his house/lab (with assistance from his daughter) where they also "milk" their snakes of their venom and sell it to various factions.Dr. Stoner gets up to mischief when he starts cross-breeding his assistants with snakes. Mind you, these are real bona fide snakes in this movie. No special effects or stunt doubles; when a snake bites Strother Martin, the snake bites Strother Martin. Reb "Captain America" Brown co-stars as the asshole jock. You know the one; the one who gets drunk and starts fights. Crazy scientist + snakes = Magic.

Runners up: Murmur of the Heart (1971), The Phynx (1970), The Madmen of Mandoras (1963)

1 comment:

beamish13 said...

The Phynx is one of the greatest rediscoveries from the Warner Archive collection. Hilarious, pathetic, cringeworthy and shocking in equal measure