Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Exploitation/B-Movie/Drive-In Challenge 2013 - Last Days & Wrap-up

Before I run down the last few days of the challenge I have to give a shout out to the unofficial sponsor of my month's viewing, Wild Eye Releasing who generously sent me a bunch of DVDs to check out and one I had already seen I was able to give away as a prize. Wild Eye is responsible for releasing lots of weird, trashy and independent horror, sleaze, comedy, and other types of crazy movies. Whether I loved the movie or I hated the movie I knew I was in for something different and for that reason alone Wild Eye is a company worth checking out and supporting.

The 26th and 27th of the month had no viewings for various reasons so there was really no reason to update until now. I got back on track on the 28th with 4 flicks.

First was GOLD. This is a weird movie that apparently didn't get shown in the US until very recently despite it being over 40 years old. This is the story of a hippie commune, full of love, nudity, drugs and sex being terrorized by the local law for all of their raunchy indecency. It was made on the fly it seems, with little budget or pre-planning and a lot of drug use. It actually isn't bad and is interesting to look at from a historical standpoint of that time and culture.

Next up was DEAD SUSHI. This movie is a freaking blast, that will have you smiling the entire time. The plot is a basic Kaiju plot with an evil corporation experimenting in drugs that will bring back animals from the dead. Well it works on sushi and the sushi grow teeth, spikes and sharp blades and begin flying around killing people. It is hilarious, and total tongue in cheek fun. This description doesn't even begin to describe the total shenanigans that occur during the very quick 91 minute runtime but you'll have to see it for yourself.

What would this month be without a little Russ Meyer action? I didn't get to see as many as I would've liked, especially since this challenge just screams out for his movies but I did manage to get one in at the end. I'd never seen it before so I popped in the DVD of MOTOR PSYCHO. The story isn't anything you've never heard before, a group of motorcycle riding weirdos terrorize passing cars on a desert road. The women in the cars are of course big breasted and beautiful as women not of that nature seem not to exist in Russ Meyer's world. I'm okay with his world. The movie is a good tale of revenge and has a rather violent finale with TNT. Very enjoyable stuff.

I couldn't decide what to watch after that so with plenty of beverages in hand I popped in XTRO 2. I'm a fan of the creepy weirdness that first movie offers but the second is just crap. Having nothing at all to do with the first Xtro, XTRO 2 is sort of like a really bad Alien ripoff... except that it is more like a ripoff of an Alien ripoff. What a shitty movie.

The 29th featured just one movie, and it would be the final Wild Eye movie of the month. THE DEATH OF ANDY KAUFMAN is an independent documentary digging into the possibility that Kaufman faked his death. This isn't really an exploitation movie in any sense but Kaufman kind of exploited people with his act, and hell, he may be exploiting all of into thinking he's dead... not sure what he'd get out of it than his own satisfaction but whatever. The documentary is okay, probably as good as I could hope for given it's seemingly DIY nature. There is a lengthy interview with Kaufman's brother and a rundown on Kaufman and his history and life. The film never gets deep enough into the idea that he did fake his death or "finding the real Andy Kaufman" and who he truly was. It scratches the surface but could've been so much more.

And on to the final day...

KEOMA was on tap. This is a sort of trippy, psychadelic, dream-like spaghetti western that is great. From Enzo Castellari's direction to Franco Nero's performance as the titular character I love this movie.  Check it out the next time you watch a western. And the image won't upload so no poster... whammy.

And the challenge comes to a conclusion with THE LOVE GARDEN. I won't say much about this now because it is part of a disc review I have coming up in a few days but it is an absolutely textbook definition way to end an exploitation marathon.


Total Films Watched
- 64
1st Time viewings - 59 (92%)
Average Film Score - 5.6/10
Best First Time Viewings - Ms. 45, Godzilla vs. Hedorah, Emergency Squad, My Dear Killer
Biggest Surprise - That I had as much enjoyment with Nazisploitation as I did.
Biggest Disappointment - The Iguana With The Tongue Of Fire
Thoughts To Sum It Up - There was a metric ton of shitty movies this month and it really drained me at times. From a disappointing giallo to unbelievably shitty shot on video horror fare this month was a struggle. There were some great movies though and putting a big dent in my "to watch" pile is always a good thing. I probably should have planned out what I wanted to watch instead of winging it but where's the fun in that? (Where's the fun in this?) The exploitation fun rolls right on into May with disc Reviews coming from Synapse and Vinegar Syndrome. And a new branch of Celluloid Terror is coming. WOO! Thanks for following along this month.

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