Monday, October 7, 2019

Repugnant Review: Zombie/Zombi 2 (1979) - Lucio Fulci

If I had to choose my favorite zombie film of all time, it would be Lucio Fulci's Zombie (Zombi 2, Zombie Flesh Eaters). Lucio Fulci has always been a good go-to when it came to super gory horror films, but for me, it all really started with this movie. Having seen all the Romero movies, I thought I was in for the same zombie flick I've seen a thousand times, but Fulci's Zombie is almost a throwback to classic zombie films such as White Zombie (1932), King of the Zombies (1941), and The Plague of the Zombies (1966)... with more gore. Zombie stars Tisa Farrow (Anthrophophagus), Ian McCulloch (Doctor Butcher M.D.), Richard Johnson (The Haunting 1963), Al Cliver (The Black Cat, The Beyond), and Olga Karlatos (Once Upon a Time in America, Purple Rain), and of course, a killer soundtrack by the great Fabio Frizzi.

Zombie has all the elements for a great zombie film. It has a great cast, creepy atmosphere, disgusting special effects, and an all around solid story. The movie is about a woman by the name of Anne Bowles (Farrow) who teams up with a journalist (McCulloch) to help find her missing father after his boat is found off the coast of a New York harbor. They gather some info from her fathers boat, and track down his last whereabouts to the Caribbean island of Matul. In order to get there, they find the help of a couple who are sailing around the world, and agree to take them to the island. The island of Matul has a history of being cursed by voodoo, and most people tend to stay away out of fear of being cursed themselves. In between the scenes of the group making their way to the island, we are introduced to Dr. David Menard (Johnson) and his wife Paola (Karlatos). He resides on the island studying voodoo curses, trying to figure out why the locals are dying, then immediately coming back to life as flesh eating monsters. Back on the boat, one of the woman take a quick dive underwater, but then she finds herself caught between a shark, and a zombie, giving us one the craziest sequences ever seen in a horror movie. The zombie tries to fight the shark, getting it's arm ripped off, and then the shark rams the boat, damaging it. They eventually arrive to the island, meeting Dr. Menard there. Anne finds out her father has died due to the mysterious illness on the island, and this is ultimately when shit really goes down. I honestly don't want to spoil much about the plot, but I'm sure most of you are aware of the gory bits. Let's get in to why I enjoy this movie so goddamn much.

This movie oozes with gothic atmosphere reminiscent of classic Hammer films. It's utterly creepy the entire time on that island, and the zombies are scary as all hell. The makeup on them were incredible, most notably the main zombie with the worms falling out of its eye. The kills are as gruesome as you'd expect from the Italian Godfather of Gore, and I'm sure you're all aware with the legendary eye gouge scene. Even to this day, that scene makes me squirm. I really love the fact that, for the most part, the origin of the curse, or how the zombies have even come to be, is all a complete mystery and never gets explained. People are coming back from the dead to eat other people, and everyone is left helpless trying to find a way off the island. Other than the cast, and gore, it's the overall creepiness of the location that keeps me watching this movie. By this time, slashers were on the rise, and horror movies started to get more obnoxious, losing the atmosphere of their predecessors. Sure, I love mindless gore-fests as much as the next guy, but I also love a movie with great atmosphere that gets you going before any killing happens.

Yeah, this is my favorite zombie film over all time. It has everything that I want out of a good horror film, and Fulci knows how to not only creep the shit out of you, but to deliver you a solid horror film with buckets of gore. If you've never seen this, go out and it get it. I know you won't be disappointed.

My Other Fulci Reviews!

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Repugnant Review: Terror Firmer (1999) - Lloyd Kaufman

Terror Firmer, in my honest opinion, is the greatest Troma film ever made. It's everything that is Troma, but on fucking crack. The copious amounts of gore, sex, and comedy are taken to a higher, fucked up level, and even to this day, I think it's Lloyd Kaufman's most extreme film. Terror Firmer centers around a Troma film crew working on their latest feature as each of them are picked off by a mysterious and sexy psychopath. The film itself is based on a book that Lloyd and James Gunn wrote called "All I Need To Know About Filmmaking I Learned From The Toxic Avenger: The Shocking True Story of Troma Studios", and other than the gruesome murders (unless Lloyd actually killed a few PA's on set), it's basically the same "story". Terror Firmer also stars Alyce LaTourelle, Will Keenan, Trent Haaga, Debbie Rochon, and Ron Jeremy, with kick-ass cameo's from Eli Roth, Lemmy Kilmister, Joe Lynch, Matt Stone, and Trey Parker.

So, during the making of the latest Toxic Avenger movie, members of the film crew start getting murdered in incredibly bizarre ways. Impaled by bongs, eaten by escalators, dismembered by moving trucks, shocked by stage lights... this movie depicts some of the coolest and cartoonish ways you can kill a person. During all of this, there is a love triangle between Jennifer (LaTourelle), Jerry (Haaga), and Casey (Keenan). There is so much wacky shit going on, that you can't look away from whatever the hell is happening. It can be a bit jarring, but in my opinion, a Troma movie is just an extremely graphic version of a Tom and Jerry cartoon. I'm not knocking it though, because I love the craziness of the entire film. Terror Firmer is just as nutty as it was in the beginning, up until the explosive finale, and you won't stop laughing for a single second. Did I also mention that, yes, this one also has the car flip scene... only involving a naked fat guy who just ran through Times Square with his insanely small donger hanging out. Holy shit... even thinking of all the other shit that happens in this movie is making my head spin. Scene after scene after scene... blood, gore, tits, and poop... what more could you ask for?

Terror Firmer is just one of those movies I watch constantly. I've seen it enough to recite more than half the movie word for word, and even when I'm writing my own scripts, I'll put it on for inspiration. It's honestly one of my favorite movies ever made, and I consider it the best Troma film ever made. I highly suggest picking this up, especially now considering Troma is re-releasing this on blu-ray for it's 20th anniversary this year. I also highly recommend the "Making Of" documentary "Farts of Darkness". It's just as funny as the actual film and I honestly can't get enough of Lloyd freaking out on everyone. I'll post a link down below to where you can find this film, along with the trailer as always. Watch this fucking movie, and let me know what you think!

Repugnant Review: I Spit On Your Grave (1978) - Meir Zarchi

 October is here, and what time is year is better than this! I figured for the entire month of October, I would review my favorite horror films of all time (yeah, I know, I missed the !st, but you know what, double the reviews!). For my first feature, I had to chose something I find completely gut-wrenching, but exciting at the same time. I Spit On Your Grave might not be the ideal Halloween movie, but it's absolutely one of the most devastating films out there. I personally love this movie, and every time someone asks me what they should watch when they want to dig deeper into more extreme stuff, I always mention this movie. Even to this day, my ass is hanging off the edge of my chair, and my teeth are embedded into my bottom lip when I watch this. It's so brutal, but they pay-off has you cheering at the end. If you want some crazy-excitement this Halloween, throw this classic on.

I Spit On Your Grave is a horror/exploitation film written and directed by Meir Zarchi. What's interesting about the making of this film, is that it's based off of a real life situation where filmmaker Meir Zarchi found a bloodied woman in a New York park after she had been raped by a couple men. This horrible situation fueled the story for what would be I Spit On Your Grave, or originally titled, Day of the Woman, and there film world would be shocked for years to come. The film is about writer Jennifer Hills (played wonderfully by Camille Keaton) who rents a cottage out in the woods so she can quietly write her first novel. When she arrives, she's met by a few men who take a liking to her. They begin to cruise by her cottage and stalk her, until one day they eventually attack Jennifer, and brutally gang-rape her. After the prolonged assault, the group tasks their mentally challenged accomplice to finish her off. He couldn't bring himself to do it, so he dips a blade in her blood, and shows them he did it. After Jennifer realizes she's alone, she tries to collect herself, and that's when she plots her brutal revenge. A little while passes, then Jennifer starts to make herself known to the ones who raped her, and one by one, she kills them all in the nastiest ways possible.

Say hello to Mr. Dickless, everyone!
Like I said before, it's a tough watch, but they pay-off is just fucking incredible. I always tell people to tough out the rape scene, because after that you're just rooting for Jennifer to completely eradicate these pieces of shit. They get hanged to death, their junk cut off, sliced to pieces by a bot propeller, and more. The more I think about it, these have got to be the same thoughts that Meir Zarchi had when he found that woman in the park, like as if he imagined this woman's own revenge and what he would personally do to these rapists. I totally get that, as I react violently whenever I read about someone being raped at a local park or party. It's an absolute shame, but this movie tells assholes like them that there are strong women out there who are more terrifying than you think. I just enjoy everything about this movie, and if you're one of those folks who can stomach the prolonged rape scene, you have to watch this. It's just an incredible film and I'm not even sure what more I can say about it. Fucking watch it.