Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Beastmaster

The Beastmaster (1982)
Directed by Don Coscarelli
Marc Singer ... Dar
Tanya Roberts ... Kiri
Rip Torn ... Maax
John Amos ... Seth

The Plot:
King Zed is betrayed by his high priest Maax (not a typo they spell it with two A's) is overthrown and has his unborn son stolen from him. Maax has a witch magically transfer Zed's son from the womb of his wife to that of a cow. The witch then takes the cow into the woods and cuts the baby from it and is about to kill him, when a peasant farmer stops her. Taking the boy home he names him Dar and raises him as his own son. They later discover that because of the way Dar was born he can control animals.
When a barbarian horde attacks the village, Dar goes on a quest for revenge.

Apparently peasant farmers have access to great gym equipment.

My thoughts:
I love this movie, I really do. Let's just talk characters for a minute.

Rip Torn is the evil priest Maax who looks like he just missed being in "the Road Warrior". Where exactly did he get the tiny skulls for his dreads? He also liked "arrr" sounds.

John Amos, plays Seth one of the king's bodyguards who survived the rebellion that Maax started. It was really a shock to see the dad from "Good Times" in some of the outfits he wore in this movie.

That outfit is dynamite!

I'm not going to comment on the obvious sexual nature of this photo.

Tanya Roberts played Kiri, the slave girl who is more than she appears to be. Yes there was a gratuitous boob scene with her and I didn't mind a bit. The movie was rated PG, which meant HBO showed it in the afternoon and I got to see boobs, another reason this is a classic.

The movie is filled with things that don't make sense. Bat people (or bird people) that appear to be cannibals, but help the heroes out. Glow worms that make people crazy, barbarian hordes that don't fit in with the rest of the plot, they're all there.

To me the whole movie was a teenagers D&D game brought to life. It had just enough plot to keep it moving, the rest was half naked people fighting and casting spells.

This is the type of movie that when I saw it at age 11, I thought it was a masterpiece. Later viewings showed me how I may have misjudged the quality. Now I look at this as one of those movies I will always watch when it's on late night cable. The nostalgia overpowers the bad writing and acting in the end.

Friday, July 13, 2012

The Collector

The Collector

Desperate to repay his debt to his ex-wife, an ex-con plots a heist at his new employer's country home, unaware that a second criminal has also targeted the property, and rigged it with a series of deadly traps.

This is the worst horror movie I've seen a long time. The plot was so full of holes it was ridiculous. I'm not worried about spoiling anything because I wouldn't let anyone I consider a friend waste money or time on this movie. So you've read the basic plot above, here's what it leaves out. Yes the ex-con (Arkin) breaks into the house and finds it rigged with traps, but why is it rigged? The "Collector" has the husband and wife hostage in the basement, and wants to keep them there to torture them. He had no idea Arkin was coming. So what was the point of the traps?

The time line is very muddled as well. They show Arkin leave the house at 5pm and there are still lots of people around. Assuming the other workers were all gone by 6pm, and the families teenage daughter was gone by 6:30pm (she wasn't kidnapped) so he would have got them between 6:30 and 7pm. Arkin returns at 11:30pm, somehow this "collector" managed to subdue the family and rig up dozens of traps in just a few hours.

The traps are ridiculous as well. The only person who could set up a room full of bear traps, glue and various snares in such a short time is this guy:

Maybe "the Collector" was a disgruntled ACME employee.

Another plot hole, when Arkin arrived he picked the lock to the back door to get in. Later they show him unable to leave through the back door because it's locked with eight deadbolts that require keys to open from the inside. How did he get in by picking only one lock then?

The piece de resistance of this movie came when the teenage daughter arrived home. She gets home with her boyfriend and they have the most gratuitous kitchen sex scene ever. The whole time they're getting it on the "collector" is watching and licking his tongue out of his mask. It was like bad fetish porn.

If Arkin had just brought a cell phone, the movie would have been over in ten minutes. 
One final question/comment, why was he "The Collector" they said he "always saves one", WHY?

This is another movie trying to cash in on the torture porn genre, and it fails.

Friday, July 06, 2012

John Dies at the End

It's a drug that promises an out-of-body experience with each hit. On the street they call it Soy Sauce, and users drift across time and dimensions. But some who come back are no longer human. Suddenly a silent otherworldly invasion is underway, and mankind needs a hero. What it gets instead is John and David, a pair of college dropouts who can barely hold down jobs. Can these two stop the oncoming horror in time to save humanity? No. No, they can't.

This is the horror movie I am most looking forward to this year.  Based on the novel by David Wong it looks to be the best horror/comedy since "Army of Darkness".  If you haven't read the book yet, go get it and read it. 
If the movie can manage to be half as simultaneously funny/scary/weird as the book it will be and instant classic.  I trust Don Coscarelli and since he was able to pull off "Bubba Ho-Tep" I think he will do a great job here.