Thursday, January 28, 2016

FINAL SPAWN (2008)



FINAL SPAWN (A.K.A. DYING GOD) (2008)

Director: Fabrice Lambot
Writers: Nicanor Loreti, German Val, Jean Depelley and Fabrice Lambot

Starring: James Horan, Lance Henriksen, Erin Brown

Don’tcha hate it when a movie choice that seems like an ace in the hole misses said hole by two motherfuckin’ miles? “Rated R for Strong Violence and Gore, Sexual Content, Nudity, Language and Brief Drug Use”!? Sounds like my kinda fuckin’ movie: trashy and artistically worthless. Sadly, the movie in question is Final Spawn, a flick that should have been aborted before it was conceived. But it wasn’t and our cinematic universe is still recovering from the blow.
     Hookers are being found raped and mutilated in some unknown city. On the case is corrupt cop Sean Fallon (James Horan), a hard drinkin’, hard smokin’, coke snortin’ detective who sells guns on the side. Through his investigation he discovered that the perp might be the last of a race of monsters who is looking for fertile women to impregnate and carry on the race. Will Fallon be able to stop him before dying of a coke overdose or alcoholic seizure—or, ya know, before other hookers are raped and killed?
     To say Final Spawn is crap would be an understatement. Let’s go ahead and get the good outta the way: Sean Fallon. I enjoyed the character, mainly because I enjoy the flick Filth and Fallon reminds me of a dollar store version of Bruce Robertson.
          I’ll also give the film credit for some decent effects. The guts look good as does the blood, but blood and guts alone do not make a worthwhile film. There needs to be some meat to hold it all together. Unfortunately, this film is on a strict
Look at that expression of suicidal sadness!
vegetarian diet.
     Okay, okay, there was a scene where a hooker dances for her john. But that’s fuckin’ it, okay? Nothing more.
     The film looks like it was shot on the first digital camera ever made: every time the camera moves the picture freaks out. It was seriously starting to give me a fuckin’ headache. And the editing is so damn choppy that I’m pretty sure it could be accused of having killed Vic Morrow and the evidence would hold up in court. And the production values were probably found in an abandoned shed and covered in mold. The acting is pretty shite, as is to be expected, even on the part of Lance Henriksen who plays Charlie, a gangster confined to a wheelchair. I can guaran-goddamn-tee you Henriksen only agreed to act in this if he didn’t have to walk around. “This script sucks. The pay sucks too but I have rent. Tell you what: I’ll star in your little shitty movie if I don’t have to walk around. Shit, just saying my lines is going to require enough effort, don’t wanna use any more than I have to.”
     Okay okay, so I’m being a little hard on a low budget film. But you know what? When I’ve seen films that were filmed for practically nothing come out looking and playing better than this piece of shit, so what do you expect? Am I just supposed to sit back and go, “Oh well, it’s low budget. Why should I expect anything from a low budget picture?” Fuck that: I have my standards, as low as they may be, and I expect them to be met!
     Okay, rant over.
     Anyways, the film seems to think what it contains is worth showing off because the fucking thing drags on and on and on. I’m talkin’ legless turtle pace. It seemed like I was checking the remaining runtime every ten seconds, praying to the Cinematic Gods to hurry this fucker up—“Bring on the closing credit sequence! I’ve got better shit to do!” But no, it just wants to take its time going about nothing, and more of the same. “But at least you get some cool monster action, right?” HELL NO! At best, you get to see a shadow and someone being dragged away. You don’t even see the monster until the last twenty minutes of the film—which happens to be the exact time you find out where the film’s entire budget went. Admittedly the monster design is decent, but you can still tell it’s just an anorexic dude in a rubber suit. Or maybe dressed in painted garbage bags. Fuck if I know, fuck if I care. (Side note: there is one scene early in the film when we catch a brief glimpse of the monster while he rapes a women. I shit you not it looks like a dude dressed in a gimp suit. I’m guessing he got lost on his way to an S&M party and wound up in Final Spawn.)
     Straight up, I’d rather listen to an album of power ballads three times in a row than watch Final Spawn again. There’s nothing to recommend here—unless you’re a masochist and enjoy torturing yourself. If a friend wants you to watch this flick not only do you tell them no, but you exorcise that friend from your circle. They ain’t right in the head.
James Horan is hunting for a better movie to star in.

ROOM 33 (2009)




ROOM 33 (2009)

Director: Edward Barbini
Writers: Edward Barbini and Donnie Dale

Starring: Chad Michael Collins, Nicole Dionne, Ace Gibson

Room 33 was on one of those cheap DVD multi-packs often found in the Get This Stuff Outta Here bins at some DVD retailers. I decided to check it out because the cover (not the one pictured) in all its craptastic glory, intrigued me. Surely the film would be a smoldering turd worthy only of the un-finest piss and shittery.
     Well, color me impressed when the film turned out to not stink quite as bad as the cover let on.
     But that’s still no recommendation.
     After a pretty cool credit sequence, we are introduced to our group of Death Fodder who are all on their way to a roller derby contest; en route, they pick up Chad (Chad Collins) and Allie (Austin Highsmith) whose car has been wrecked. After the “running-low-on-gas” cliché strands them at a rest home that may have once been a psychiatric hospital, the group decides to hold up there for the night. While there, Sarah (Nina Hauser) is attacked by a girl with a shovel, Roxy (Olivia Leigh), who’s babbling about Rachel. Who is Rachel? And who is the strange man in black wandering about the grounds and killing people off one by one? And what secrets lie in Room 33?
     Sure, this damn thing is no masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination (even when placed next to SyFy Channel fare), but it wasn’t as awful as I thought it was going to be. Sure, it’s still a piece of crap, just not a soggy, maggot-infested one. The biggest flaw with this flick—and it’s a pretty damn big one—is that it simply isn’t engaging. We don’t give three shits about any of the characters because they’re all boring and spend a bulk of the running time arguing and arguing and arguing over dumb, inconsequential shit. Things don’t get going in earnest until about the 45-minute mark, but I’d stopped caring by that point. After this, the film just sort of meanders its way to a conclusion, upon which the film just ends. Thinking about it, it’s not so much a conclusion as it is just the filmmakers being unable to find anything else to pad out the runtime.
     As mentioned earlier, there is a killer stalking the grounds and offing the idiots by screaming at them. Are the kills good? Bad? Who knows! All, except one, happen off-screen. And the one they do show is so great that I don’t even remember what happens.
     There are only about two positive things I can say about this flick: the location is nice, and it’s the females who have the guts in this flick. The men come off as little more than impotent idiots and are simply here because men exist in real life.
     In the end, it’s understandable why this film ended up on a multi-pack: no one in their right mind would dole out any amount of dough on such a turd. Dull, unimaginative, and uninspired are three perfect words to describe this flick. Definitely not gonna watch it again.
     However, compared to the film I watched afterwards (Final Spawn), Room 33 is a mid-grade masterpiece…

ZOMBEAVERS (2014)



ZOMBEAVERS (2014)

Director: Jordan Rubin
Writers: Jordan Rubin, Al Kaplan, Jon Kaplan

Starring: Rachel Melvin, Hutch Dano, Courtney Palm

Ya know, the concept sounded wonderful, a sure-fire hit: combine zombies with nature-run-amok. Come on, the idea is fuckin’ golden. Sadly though, the concept took the shape of Zombeavers, one of the unfunniest horror-comedies I’ve yet to watch. Many horror fans I’ve dealt with seem to think this flick is golden. However, their senses of humor seem to be leaden, proportionate to the ratio with which they enjoyed this flick. No, you will not have a fun time with this flick. I mean, unless you think the epitome of humor is a fart joke.
     Two morons from the Mamaronneck Medical Research Facility are driving down the road. They plow into a deer which causes one of the barrels they’re transporting to abandon ship and land next to a beaver dam, shooting its contents everywhere like a chemical money shot. Okay, so let’s meet our three leads: Jenn (Lexi Atkins), Zoe (Cortney Palm) and Mary (Rachel Melvin), three ladies heading out to the country for some much-needed time without their boyfriends. After swimming and showing off some cleavage, the idiotic boyfriends arrive—and some Bedspring Music is made…except between Jenn and Sam (Hutch Dano), who’re having relationship troubles because Sam kissed some unidentified girl at a party. But the boyfriends aren’t the only uninvited guests: a horde of zombie beavers have gathered outside the cabin—and they’re eager to take a bite out of some college girl beaver! Can the gang stop the zombie beavers? Will any of them escape? Will the actors be able to continue working with a shred of dignity?
     Oh, and did I mention that whatever/whomever gets bitten by a zombie beaver turns into a zombie beaver/whatever-the-hell-it-is hybrid? Fun.
     Okay, so it should be obvious that the big draw here is the comedy: the flick doesn’t take itself seriously for a second. However, the comedy is unfunny—almost offensively so. And if it isn’t unfunny, then it’s simply desperate, reaching with all it’s might to touch your funny bone, even if it’s just a teeny tiny bit. Sure, you might get a laugh or two, but any more and you might wanna have your sense of humor checked out by a doctor because it’s surely incurred some problems. Most of the jokes revolve around beaver puns, beaver puns and more beaver puns. Color me unimpressed because I expect a little bit more outta my comedy than juvenile humor. If I wanted that I’d just go hang out around a middle school and listen to all the idiotic jokes flying hither and thither.
     What else can be said about this flick? Well, it has practical effects. So I’ll give ‘em that. It also has titties—nice ones at that—so I’ll give ‘em a point there, too. Oh, and a guy gets his dick bitten off by his girlfriend who becomes a zombeavhuman (yeah, I made the name up). So, another point.
     Yes, as you can see I’m really reaching for something nice to say about this duller-than-dishwater flick. And I’m pretty much pulling up jack shit.
     Okay okay, enough grasping at straws. Basically, the flick is boring, the comedy is D.O.A., and the movie drags even at only 74 minutes. Yeah, I was pretty bored by this damn thing and about popped open a bottle of cheap champagne when the end credits appeared. Skip it, skip it, skip it. And then skip it again.