Monday, 29 July 2013

Nightmares in a Damaged Brain (1981)

The history of ‘Nightmares in a Damaged Brain’ as a video nasty is very funny. Well that whole era of over the top moral crusading and BBFC overreaction to censorship was just ludicrously hilarious anyway. The film made its presence known to stuffy tight-collared conservative types when the videotape came with the gimmicks of a competition to guess the weight of a brain in a jar and giving away free sick bags with each copy. In addition, the movie’s original British distributor was imprisoned for releasing a version not passed by the censors. It was eventually banned but passed uncut in the United Kingdom in 2005. Unfortunately, it is that same version that the distributor was banged up for which is a tad bit snipped anyway.

Monday, 22 July 2013

Raw Meat (1973)

Mishandled distribution can kill the chances of an important genre offering even making a dent when really it should be fulfilling its potential influential status as a prime innovator of a cinematic movement. Not that British horror ‘Raw Meat’ (aka ‘Death line’ in my native homeland) is an overall great movie as it suffers from inconsistences in its tone. This uneven tone makes for a confusing viewing experience in what we the audience should be feeling. We are up and down like Tower Bridge with our emotions, as we are deeply disturbed at one time then laughing the next. The tone goes back and forth. However, it does employ many awe-inspiring elements for the enthusiastic film buff that all just screams out cult classic. Unfortunately and criminally due to further bad distributing of its home video releases ‘Raw Meat’ has not even achieved that honour. This most under seen of under seen titles deserves to have a huge spotlight shun upon it.

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Tenement (1985)

A long forgotten entry into the slew of low budget B movie urban warfare action flicks that populated grindhouse theatres and video stores in the 1980s ‘Tenement’ (aka ‘Game of Survival’ and ‘Slaughter in the South Bronx’) is a scuzzy nasty exploitative version of the superior filmmaking of John Carpenter’s masterfully suspenseful ‘Assault on Precinct 13’ (1976). This is not though putting down the film in review here as judging it on its own merits it works effectively well on the limitations of its meager resources as an entertaining piece of cheesy trashy exploitation as it knows what it is and does not try to be anything more than that. Graphic depictions of violence and nudity abound weaved into a home invasion tale of residents standing their ground and fighting for what is theirs.

Thursday, 4 July 2013

The Battery (2012)

‘The Battery’ reminds me of the kind of low budget independent horror filmmaking in the 70’s Golden Age of cinema during the transitioning of the genre from the gothic to the modern. This is in the respect of how these young filmmakers with guts and vision were banging and kicking the door of Hollywood and smashing right through it with their energetically powerful films.