Monday, December 5, 2022

Blood Beat [1983]

This film is very poorly represented by its poster. There was no sex in the movie. The vibe of this movie is some sort of combination of Things and Hereditary but without the humor of the former or the quality of the latter. Frequently something would happen in this film and we would all look at each other in the hope that someone understood what happened but no one ever did. The lore of this movie is kind of nonexistent, and the film kind of feels like an attempt at justifying someone's purpose of samurai armor.

The plot is about a woman's two kids coming home for Christmas with their significant others. She's a painter who refuses to marry her boyfriend, and her son's girlfriend thinks she can read her mind. There's some deer hunting. Sometimes the girlfriend freaks out and has visions of a samurai. People start dying. This samurai seems to have something to do with the mom, but it's not clear. It might give her the ability to paint or just possess her to make its own paintings? The samurai is defeated kind of easily by her two kids who may have magic powers that they got from her. That's the end.

We only really got two brief laughs. Mostly we were confused.

Spoon Rating: 2

Monday, November 28, 2022

Killpoint [1984]

Gonna be honest here: I definitely watched this movie and I definitely don't know what it's about. Some guy named Night Hawk stole guns? Some guy named Marx killed a prostitute? I literally couldn't follow it and even the Wikipedia summary is only two sentences long. And that's not because it's badly written (but it is). It's because every once in a while an absolutely wild scene would happen and I would forget everything else that happened before it. Most of those scenes involved Cameron Mitchell talking to or about his tiny black poodle who mysteriously disappears 3/4 of the way through the movie. Some of them were just scenes of Leo Fong, staring dead eyed into the camera, not a trace of acting attempt made. There were some moments of downtime and some lengthy, very poorly choreographed fight scenes, but ultimately the crazy energy of this movie was pretty consistent throughout. I liked it, but I already don't remember it.

Spoon Rating: 5.5

Monday, November 21, 2022

Sorceress [1982]

This movie asks the question, what if Andy Sidaris played Dungeons and Dragons? 

The plot is kind of hard to follow for basic logic reasons. An evil sorcerer goes after the mother of his children in order to sacrifice their first born to a god who gives him power. The surprise is that she had twins and won't tell him who the older one is. The twins are given connection powers by a wizard or something and then they are raised as boys (for no discernible reason) by some peasants. They encounter a Pan-like man and a red-bearded viking who take them to a Middle Eastern style brothel where they meet some blonde guy to help them. They are captured shortly after and the guys who caught them do a spell to see which is older. The older one is taken to an Egyptian style palace with the blonde guy as her consort, given soma (yeah, like from Brave New World), and then set up for the sacrifice. There's a final battle. The good guys win and it's kind of implied that the blonde guy gets both twins?

This movie is lame. Most of the film operates under the "rule of cool." There's a lot of boobs peeking through absolutely hideous costumes. The lore doesn't really make sense. The acting and fighting are unconvincing. There's gotta be better fantasy out there.

Spoon Rating: 2

Monday, November 14, 2022

Standing Ovation [2010]

There needs to be a name for the genre of films that seem like Disney Channel Original movies but aren't. Popstar was the last movie we saw like this and, honestly, this kind of movie is actually a win, far more than actual DCOM since those actually have some standards. This time we have Standing Ovation, a movie that combines the inappropriateness of Popstar with the absolutely nonsense of something like Deadly Lessons. It was a ride.

On paper, this film is pretty basic. It's about a quintet of preteens call The Ovations who are trying to win a singing competition against their rivals, The Wiggies, a quintet of high school seniors or something who look 23 and are all the adopted daughters (or sugar babies?) of a rich wig manufacturer. There's also an annoying "little sister" character who is no one's sister but is trying to join both groups and her voice is like nails on a chalkboard. The main girl of The Ovations, Brittany, is struggling with trying to keep her Irish grandfather from gambling away what little money they have while her songwriter brother is off giving his songs away to The Wiggies. Brittany meets a girl named Joey who definitely has mafia connections and agrees to be her manager. She's also 12 by the way. Joey has her own mission to get revenge on the man who robbed her family, leading to her father's early death. Again. she is 12. I honestly hesitate to say much more about the plot because part of what makes this movie so off the wall is how many times it genuinely surprises you, often with Joey. It's kind of like if Step Up was combined with a bad neo-noir. It's also a musical and while the dancing is fine and the production of the music is pretty okay generic pop, the lyrics of some of these songs are just pathetic or curious. The boy groups sings a song about how Beyonce, Britney, Rhianna, and Whitney all want them in their dreams but they're saving themselves for you, girl. Oh, and the wigs are bad but The Wiggies all wear pretty cute 50s throwback clothes to make up for it.

This movie genuinely shocked us with a lot of moments while still having the most predictable last 15 minutes ever. Adam might have hit the nail on the head with the assessment that the movie feels a bit like it was written to have adult characters initially but then they changed it to kids for marketing purposes. Or the writer is secretly a bit inappropriately fascinated by little girls, if you get what I'm saying. But hey, the writing is bad (fat jokes and gross out humor: why), the camera work is occasionally hilarious, and it's full of cringe or WTF. I wouldn't really want to watch it again myself, but I definitely would to watch someone else's reaction. Give it a go.

Spoon Rating: 6

Monday, November 7, 2022

Chuck E. Cheese In The Galaxy 5000 [1999]

Since we just had Halloween (where we watched the original Hellraiser instead of a bad movie), we couldn't think of anything scarier than this: Chuck E. Cheese In The Galaxy 5000. Although obviously this was made for children, it has such a strange vibe it's hard to think of what parents would actually decide on this film to show their kids. Also strange is that apparently Chuck and his buddies (Helen the chicken and love interest, the Texan dog Jasper, the purple alien Mr. Munch, and Pasquale the Italian stereotype) are all in a band, which would clearly make for a better story than this.

The plot is that Pasquale introduces a kid named Charlie to the crew because he needs $50,000 to help his aunt and uncle replace their tractor. Farming is actually a motif in this movie for some reason (was the franchise established by a farmer?). The crew decides to enter into a race on another planet to win the prize money. Sure. Sounds easy. There they meet two very queer German bodybuilders and a stereotypical blonde who is into Chuck. Helen tries to make Chuck jealous using the gays who then lock her up after explaining their evil plan to win the race with zoom gas, designed by a mad scientist named Dr. Zoom. Apparently it makes you go fast but think slow so it's probably a drug allegory. Team Cheese ends up winning the race after Chuck gets some training from Pasquale in disguise as a Scottish stereotype. There are a lot of bad songs. Blonde goes off with the bodybuilders, which means she has no gaydar and is presumably into three ways. Dance party!

This movie was actually pretty fun to watch. It's stupid enough to make fun of easily and doesn't really drag at a swift one hour timestamp. 

Spoon Rating: 5

Monday, October 24, 2022

Slaughter High [1986]

 Let's cut to the chase with this one: this movie sucked. Thankfully next week since it's Halloween, we will be treating ourselves to a good movie instead.

The film is about a bunch of popular kids torturing a really dumb nerd who ends up dropping nitric acid on himself while the chem lab is on fire. They return to the school for a high school reunion, but it was just a ploy to get them in one place so the nerd can kill them. They mostly die in stupid and not funny ways but there's a great mud sound effect at one point. The final victim is the girl who pretended she was going to have sex with him to lure him into the girl's locker room. She fails at throwing a stick at him and he gets her too. Then all the kids come back as zombies but surprise, it was all a dream the nerd had while in the hospital. The film ends with the nerd killing his doctor or something with a satisfied smile, but none of us understood why. It was lame.

Also, all the actors sounded like they were doing accents but from where we'll never know.

Spoon Rating: 2

Monday, October 17, 2022

Night Of The Lepus [1972]

In what was clearly an effort to try to horror-ify as many nonthreatening things as possible, we get tonight's film, Night of the Lepus. If you don't know what a lepus is, they tell you twice within the first five minutes that it's the Latin name for rabbits. 

Apparently there is a situation with too rabbits in Arizona so they decide to transgender the rabbits with some hormones to keep them from being as fertile (instead of calling it open rabbit season in a place where everyone seems to own a shotgun anyway). The scientist injecting the rabbits even admits that he's not sure what the results will be so that bodes well for the experiment. Then his stupid daughter decides to switch up a control and experimental group rabbit because one was her favorite. They let her keep it and she immediately loses it in the wild. From there we get exponentially-increasing-in-size rabbits that are out for blood. They are more determined to just make everything bloody and occasionally dismember than they are to eat, but we mostly just get a lot of slow motion shots of them running through unconvincing miniature sets. At one point we do get a man in a suit, but it was pretty briefly lived. The movie does start to drag, but at least they never stop being cute and they never look menacing no matter how many under the snout shots and growling noises they try. The humans eventually set up an elaborate plan to electrocute them all on some trains tracks that works.

This movie is good for a few laughs from it's pretty poor effects but ultimately it feels like a 50s horror film in the way it drags and the way in lacks any irony. Camp would have really improved the movie in this case for inexplicably, they tried to ground it somewhat in reality. A giant, fluffy murderous reality.

Spoon Rating: 3