“Five Dolls for an August Moon” is a wonderfully entertaining example of massive style over substance. The gleeful Bava was peeved at not getting what he asked for so he delivered something entirely different than anyone expected.
In an age where bona fide classics in the horror genre get the remake treatment or are being re-imagined there are some cult films out there that really could do with a make-over treatment. A little finesse story wise, some polishing in the gory department and a bigger budget that could help realize better a possibly great location could work wonders for a film that has a solid premise. Case in point; “Blood Rage”.
“Pieces” is an unapologetically sleazy and gory slasher film without any socially redeeming qualities to hide behind. It’s misogynistic, overall in bad taste and, in the end, completely gonzo so there’s no way of taking it seriously. It’s there for the bloody set-pieces and the gratuitous nudity and so it goes all out in delivering those.
Give “Night School” the benefit of the doubt is you’re a slasher fan. It’s very competently made, has some inventive kill scenes, a killer looking head chopping villain, some good dialogue, overall solid acting performances and a polished look. The meanness of the villain and some sleaze compensate for the lack grisly gore on display.
A group of people arrive at an abandoned mansion on a remote island. All of them are relatives of a money mogul who is believed to have perished in a plane crash somewhere in Panama. The host, Peterson, is nowhere to be found and all the guests have individual letters upon arrival and are assigned to a specific room. The only other person there is a male maid who serves them dinner and seems to be in love with one of the guests.
A maniac dressed as Santa Claus is picking off the citizens of the Midwestern town Cryer he deems as naughty. Sheriff Cooper (McDowell) is understaffed so he calls in Deputy Aubrey Bradimore (King) to work on Christmas Eve. Aubrey has a host of personal issues to deal with, not least the fact that this will be her first Christmas since her husband’s passing.
“Prom Night” is one of my personal favourites and this flick can stand up to multiple viewings. The plot is as simple as they come but that doesn’t prevent director Lynch from trying his best to serve up red herrings as to who’s doing the killing. It takes it’s time in the build-up and firmly establishes it’s characters and the film is all the richer for it.
“The Dark Half” is definitely a second tier Romero film when you think of his classics and it’s most certainly a middle of the road novel for King. But the film improves markedly on the book by making some subtle changes and further cementing the otherworldly relationship between author and his fictional creation which (with no agreeable explanation in book or film) suddenly springs to life.