AKA Demoni 3 Director: Umberto Lenzi Starring:Keith Van Hoven, Joe Balogh, Sonia Curtis, Philip Murray, Juliana Teixeira, Maria Alves, Clea Simones .Italy/Brazil. 1h 28m
With a host of amazing titles under his belt already, from Giallo, Poliziotteschi, horror and gore, Lenzi struggled to make such an equal impact as Cannibal Ferox, Almost Human and Nightmare City in his 90’s Voodoo romp Black Demons. Originally titled as Demoni 3, with the anticipation of being a third in the Lamberto Bava’s series the movie has very little to do with the cult series.
What starts out not a million miles away from any other Voodoo based zombie story, an accidental uttering of a n ancient curse in a foreign tongue results in the undead coming back to life to prey on the living. But is this the first undead race war? Usually zombies don’t see color, even though this sketch does suggest something to the contrary.
Director: Wes Ball Starring: Dylan O’Brien, Will Poulter, Ki Hong Lee, Kaya Scodelario, Barry Pepper, Aidan Gillen, Giancarlo Esposito, Thomas Brodie-Sangster. UK. 2h 22m
I’m a big sucker for well planned trilogies, but if I don’t feel there’s much going for them, like the Matrix, I’ll only watch the first and last. Generally the 2nd movie is just fluffy filler, something to make the fans ever eager for the penultimate showdown. I like to see the set up and close down and I feel that I’ve not missed anything by skipping straight to the final chapter here. At last we all get some closure to a franchise that has a curious beginning, the ending won’t be much of a payoff.
Director: Marc Forster Starring: Brad Pitt, .USA/UK. 1h 56m
For every great book there is a highly anticipated and terrible movie. Even the “good” movies fail to hit all of the high notes of a novel, but spending 2 hours watching one person’s perspective of something that might have taken you a week or month to read will never compare. At least World War Z was very open that it was never an attempt to “be” the book but just to give a flavour of one of the books ethos, but more importantly for studio this was going to be the biggest grossing movie with the best stars and have fancy graphics and the world was going to love it.
Director: William Cooke, Paul Talbot Starring: Gunnar Hansen, Robin Roberts, Tres Holton .USA. 1h 28m
Some of the best horror movies from the golden era of the 80’s and 90’s are some of the most down to earth, homegrown labor’s of love that cinema has ever presented and this entertaining anthology is one of the lesser known fun flicks that offers a bit of psychotropic kicks more than anything all too seriously scary it’s totally off the wall b movie goodness. Continue reading Campfire Tales (1991)→
(a.k.a. Zombies, Zombie Bloodbath and Voodoo Blood Bath)
Director: Del Tenny Starring: William Joyce, Heather Hewitt, Betty HyattLinton, Dan Stapleton .USA. 1h 25m
There’s a kitchy comic wanderlust feeling about this movie which is what makes it so memorable, no matter how cheesy or racist it ends up, it’s from the mid 60’s it’s going to be questionable by todays standards but it had a great vibe, a goofball story and possibly the first suicide bomber zombie?
Written, Produced and Directed by Del Tenny in the mid 60’s there wasn’t much scope for getting the movie released until 1971 when it was unshelved and became a drive in legend with a similar named production called I Drink Your Blood (1970) and as off key freaky duo they work together however with the addition of savage natives, zombies and evil scientist neither are really all that scary. Tenny’s other swinging flicks include The Horror of Party Beach and The Curse of the Living Corpse both from 1964 and share all the psychobilly themes of any halloween tiki party. Continue reading I Eat Your Skin (1964/1971)→
Director:Lucio Fulci . Writer : Dardano Sacchetti Starring. Tisa Farrow, Ian McCulloch, Richard Johnson, Al Cliver, Olga Karlatos, Auretta Gay. Italy. 1h 31m.
I had seen a great deal of movies around the time I finally found a copy of this on DVD and being in my early 20’s I prided myself on seeing a lot of horror and gore films, banned movies galore, I honestly thought I had seen it all, but half way through this Zombie Flesh Eaters, I realised I hadn’t see anything quite like the Tiger Shark Vs Zombie scene… I got into more detail here, but the film is a testament to Fulci’s ability to try new things while being a staple in the 70’s horror scene.
Director: Paul Maslansky Starring:Marki Bey, Robert Quarry, Don Pedro Colley, Betty Anne Rees, Richard Lawson, Zara Cully, Charles Robinson .USA. 1h 31m
For me this Blaxploitation thriller is a testament to Fulci’s zombie culture, with a strong vibe from a more authentic hoodoo background mixed with a strong black female lead this could be a damned near perfect blend of real gore horror but it just falls short but doesn’t fail to entertain.
Paul Maslansky managed to recreate the pure essence of a woman scorned, by killing Sugar’s lover in the opening scenes, this spurting her on the road to bitter revenge. Spicing the story up with a Fulci’s zombie hoard, the amalgamation almost works but if he had only added a bit more of a dangerous woman about town a la Pam Grier, gun fights and blades this would have been absolutely perfect. However despite its reputation of being a bit of a joke it’s still a wonderful film, just lacking some bite. Let me explain… Continue reading Sugar Hill (1974)→
Director: Andrea Bianchi. Starring. Karin Well, Cianluigi Chirizzi, Simone Mattoli,Antonella Antinori, Pietro Barzocchini. Italy. 1h 25m.
AKA Nights of Terror, Zombi Horror, The Zombie Dead, Zombie 3
This seems to be one of the long-lost zombie films of the 80’s, but there’s a reason why this isn’t talked about that much in the same circles as Fulci, Argento and D’Amato.
During the 70’s and early 80’s Italian cinema became saturated with dark tales of zombies and ghouls coming back from the dead to feast on the living. While Burial Grounds seems to follow all the popular trends of the golden age it somehow does this without much of a narrative. but still remains a fan favourite and is admittedly a very unexpected thrilling viewing experience. Continue reading Burial Ground : The Nights of Terror (1981)→
Director: Justin Timpane. Starring. Cory Eskridge, Okouchi, Daniel Ross, Dan Guy, Carla Okouchi, PJ Megaw. USA. 1h 26m.
Independent cinema is a minefield to navigate sometimes, there are bad films and bad bad films and good bad films, but those gems which really capture fan attention are those which no matter how bad they appear, there is a clear attempt do make something to the best of one’s abilities here and to have fun while doing it and that just might be the charm which makes this a unusual cut above the rest.
This is definitely a homemade, call in the help of some buddies and maybe a local band to get this project off the ground; but in all fairness without the years of classical training and millions of bucks it’s quite an accomplishment, although on par with the video segment from VHS 2.5. It’s strange how we take some projects to heart and ignore others, luckily though it’s small cult following there have been a few follow ups. Continue reading Ninjas Vs Zombies (2008)→
In the summer of 1979 Lucio Fulci released Zombi 2 also known as Island of the Living Dead, also known as Nightmare Island and sometimes known as Zombie Flesh Eaters, and possibly many other titles. This bold and sensual movie was intended as an unofficial sequel to George A Romero’s Dawn of the Dead (1978), it was quite a popular theme for Italian directors to make unofficial sequels to American releases, for me the most iconic would be Alien 2 : On Earth (1980) which was Ciro Ippolito and Biagio Proietti’s attempt to make an earth bound sequel to Ridley Scott’s 1979 cult classic Alien. It’s as different as day and night to Alien and the intended sequel Aliens, but it’s a really wacky but thrilling lower budget movie. It’s brilliant that the ambition to make a daring sequel spurred on a wonderful director to try and achieve something new, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Continue reading Zombie Vs Shark→