The Birds (1963)
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Main Stars: Rod Taylor, Tippi Hedren, Jessica Tandy, Suzanne Pleshette
Storyline: A wealthy young woman chases a man to a small Northern California town where the birds start to attack people for no known reason.
Review (Spoils): Melanie Daniels (Tippi Hedren) is pretty well off and good looking and always gets what she wants. She falls a bit for a man at the pet store and follows him off to a small town where he is with his mother and young sister. It seems like as soon as she shows up in town things start to become strange. Birds start to swoop at people’s heads; some birds even peck people to death.
The birds are swooping and tacking everyone, we have birds doing fly by nips, a cool kids birthday party being crashed by birds, lots of people screaming and running, a nice blown up gas station and some small minor blood as bird peck people. The film has great mute sounds spots when needed to create the mood, which is some of the class of Alfred Hitchcock. Tippi Hedren steals the show in this film as the gently spoken blonde that everyone wants but at the same time why she walking herself into these situations. The birds themselves can be a bit corny but that it half the fun of the film it can be spooky but at the same time fun. The whole plot and reason of the birds is never fully explained, as most of the film is people just trying to escaping the flock of death.
Rating: I am stunned that I have not reviewed this classic film yet. This film is a horror masterpiece but is not out in the top 10 of all time as I find Psycho a much better film then this. However, the birds, the sounds and lack of is what makes this movie such a horror gem. Stay away from the horrible sequel that comes out years later… you have been warned!
Director: Jorg Buttgereit
Main Stars: Bernd Daktari Lorenz, Beatrice Manowski, Harald Lundt
Storyline: A street sweeper brings home a corpse after a bad accident and learns that his wife enjoys the body more than him.
Review (Spoils): Rob and Betty are not your normal couple. When Rob brings some a rotting corpse for him and his wife to play with things become massive bizarre. He loses his job and even ends up losing his wife to the dead.
Ever need to watch a film that is so wrong that it is makes it a classic. Well welcome to the world of necrophilia. Yes, not an easy topic, but one that is portrayed in this film massively. If your easy offended, then just skip this review and this series as this is one sick fucker. Rob makes the dumbest decision by bringing home a well rotted body for he and his wife’s pleasure. Well Bob must suck because his Wife Betty has now left him a note that she is leaving him as she does not want to waste the rest of her life with him, she takes the corpse. We have the attractive Beatrice Manowski (which makes the movie even harder to watch) playing with dead bodies and parts and when I say play I actually mean having sick with! Lots of wrongness in this film, body goo, skinned rabbit, beheadings, sex/masturbation with the dead, gore, some blood, body parts that we don’t even know what it is and morals out the fucking window!
Rating: This film is a gem as it is wrong on all levels of film. The film is not well done but the topic and the gore is so over the top that you need to laugh or puke. Too be honest it is a bit of both. You cannot call yourself a horror fan if you do not know this film. It is banned in many countries for reason and it took me forever to get a copy of this many years ago. Wait till the ending…. You need lots of beer for this one….Cult Classic!
Cabin Fever (2016)
Director: Travis Zariwny
Main Stars: Gage Golightly, Matthew Daddario, Samuel Davis, Nadine Crocker, Dustin Ingram, Randy Schulman, Louise Linton
Storyline: A group of young people go to a cabin in the woods and become sick from the water supply.
Review (Spoils): Remake time yet again in the world of horror. This time it is one of gems of the horror world Cabin Fever. The story does not stretch far from the original except the characters are a little more paper thin, the dialogue is vague and you actually can be annoyed at the beginning of the film with the characters. But it makes up some of this with the gore.
We have pretty much the same scenes as the original film (which gives a question why the remake) and the blood is not as good but there is plenty still. We have gory dogs, puking blood, the classic shave scene, unnecessary sex scenes (nice body Nadine Crocker), gun shots, rotting flesh, nasty bleeding, some stupid dropin characters that were not needed and the cute Gage Golightly.
Rating: This film is pretty much the same thing but not as funny and the characters are a bit more annoying. The film has the same amount of gore but the sex scenes are annoying and not needed and the characters that just dropin in the film make no sense. This hurts the film, if they would have just stuck with the blood and gore and Gage Golightly this film could have been rated higher.
Director: Robert Hartford-Davis
Main Stars: Peter Cushing, Sue Lloyd, Noel Trevarthen, Kate O’Mara,
Storyline: A doctor’s model lover gets her face burnt and he does whatever at what cost to help restore her beauty.
Review (Spoils): Surgeon Sir John Rowan (Peter Cushing) is dating a high profile model (Sue Lloyd) who likes to hang around some hipsters. During one of the parties while she is posing for some pictures an argument breaks out between Rowan and the photographer and a light drops on her head. She gets badly burnt and her career hits rocks bottom. She pressures Rowan to start to use a gland from the brain to regrew her flesh on her face. This works but only temporary which leads them both on a non stop hunt for more glands.
This film is not a Hammer Film but the storyline is great. Sure there is some funky hipster music and sometimes the film feels like an acid trip but once the evil pours it pours like a fine wine. Peter Cushing plays the serious doctor but at the same time he just does not fit in the crowd of the film nor does he seem like a likely match for his model girlfriend. We have red blood once the film kicks into high gear, knives, slaughtering of young women, a nasty scar on the face, a bitchy model and the long hunt for woman to kill so his love can be beautiful.
Rating: I personally really liked this film and never heard of it before it I noticed it playing. It had Peter Cushing so I was like what the Hell. This film does not disappoint the acting is well done and the chase scene at the end was great. The photographer can seem a bit annoying but you can get around that as it is a couple short scenes. Thank you Grindhouse yet again for a nice horror classic.
A Quiet Place in the Country (1968)
Director: Elio Petri
Main Stars: Franco Nero, Vanessa Redgrave, Georges Geret
Storyline: A painter haunted by nightmares moves to the country with his lover to help get away
Review (Spoils): Lenardo Ferri (Franco Nero) is a popular painter and has a unique mind and vision. In the last few months he has not done anything new or completed anything. He seems to be struggling with strange nightmares and mental issues. One of the nightmares that haunt him is the sexual perversion and ending in death dreams with his lover and I believe real-estate agent Flavia (Vanessa Redgrave). Concerned for him she moves him to the country to get away from the trauma dreams and inspire his work but leads to even more mental trips and the dreams increase.
My wife introduced me to this film early this week as she knew my love for this era and Italian film. This film did not disappoint, it is much like an erotic acid trip of images, bright red blood and confusion. So the movie was right up my alley. Sure the film did not do much on the shock and gore much like a Dario or Lucio film but the film had some feelings that it may have influenced such films like The Shinning. The acting was done very well, the dialogue kept me locked on the film and of course the erotic beauty of Vanessa Redgrave and the visual images is what really drove the film home for me.
Rating: This film is not going to be for everyone or the standard horror fan who like teen scares or spookiness. This film is more like a piece of moving art that has a nice touch oddness going for it.
The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960)
Director: Terence Fisher
Main Stars: Paul Massie, Christopher Lee, Dawn Addams
Storyline: The Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde storyline but with a twist.
Review (Spoils): Doctor Henry Jekyll (Paul Massie) is a boring man as he is stuck in his lab all day working with monkeys and mute children trying to study the workings of the mind. He is so occupied that he is ignoring his wife’s (Dawn Addams)needs and she is fooling around with his best friend Paul Allen (Christopher Lee). This leads to madness when the doctor starts to experiment on himself after being rejected by his wife. The difference is in this tale is he becomes a more cleaner looking gentleman but a madman inside.
This is a total different twist then the other versions of have seen so far with the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde storyline. At beginning of the film I was wondering what the hell was going on with Paul Massie and his voice but once the film kicked into gear I was surprised and locked on this film. The acting is well done and to be honest Christopher Lee stole the show. He is the clean cut friend who is screwing Jekylls wife and using his money. Dawn Addams plays the part of the not so nice wife who is only out for herself in her own way but in love Paul.
This film gives us the basic Hammer Film treatment of bosom women, stockings, a longer then it needed to be dance show, some snake charming ladies oh and some red blood and a nice blow to head (poor Oliver Reed)
Rating: This film is great! It actually might be up there as one of favorite Hammer Films as the story keeps you glued to the screen and the ending is very well done and the conclusion is shocking (remind me of The Fly for some reason). If you have not seen this film and a fan of the Hammer Films you need to check this one out.
The Unholy Three (1925)
Director: Tod Browning
Main Stars: Lon Chaney, Mae Busch, Matt Moore, Victor McLaglen, Harry Earles
Storyline: Three sideshow performers start a crime spree taking place from a bird shop.
Review (Spoils): Three sideshow performers a ventriloquist named Echo (Lon Chaney), a small man named Tweedledee (Harry Earle) and a strong man named Hercules (Victor McLaglen) start a plan to make some money. Echo will pose as an old lady (who can use his voice to make birds talk) as Tweedledee poses as a baby and they rob people as they complain about the birds stop talking at home. Ties this in with a love triangle and this is the plot of the story.
Checking out this film I was not sure what exactly I was getting into but this film is a silent gem. Lon Chaney played all his parts perfectly as the leader of the crime gang and the old lady. The facial expressions of Lon Chaney is outstanding and he really is the man of make-up. The lead actress Mae Busch is also great as she plays the strong woman of the gang but she tied between the love triangle of once being used by Echo and then following love with one of the victims.
Rating: This film does not scream blood or guts as it is a silent film from the 20s but what we do have here is a classic in the horror film genre. Tod Browning did something like this later on called Freaks it was more over the top this is more story based then shock based. Another Lon Chaney classic!