Category Archives: 1980s

Cop Game (1988)

“You’re saying Shooman is a KGB agent, out at the front, countering Vietcong attacks! Sounds like science fiction!” Sure does, but you know what else it sounds like? A Bruno Mattei movie! The fact that it was Romano Puppo who spit out this bit of soft-headed, hard-boiled dialogue only confirms it! (Puppo  (Escape from the Bronx, 2019: After the Fall of New York) spends most of his scenes chewing out Brent Huff for calling him “Skipper” prompting the classic line, “this isn’t a goddamn yacht club!”) Continue reading

Inferno (1980)

There’s some pretty poor decision making going on in Dario Argento‘s Inferno. The dippy woman who tries to steal the most evil book this side of the Necronomicon? Be glad you only got murdered later on and didn’t get your face shoved in the pot of boiling gunk the dude with the monster claws was using to fix books with. Next time try using your library card! Continue reading

Sphinx (1981)

It’s easy to see why Sphinx stinks in scenes like the one where Egyptologist Erica Baron attempts to justify her desire to get credit for a big discovery she makes by playing the gender card, complaining that men get all the breaks in her profession. It’s a scene that seems to come out of nowhere, doesn’t make you sympathetic to her since we hadn’t seen her mistreated by academia and frankly just doesn’t make any sense since the whole point of her going to Egypt in the first place was to do some research, get published and to make a name for herself. And besides, if she were a man, wouldn’t she still want credit for a discovery of such magnitude? Continue reading

Dog Tags (1987)

Three of the cinema’s best genres are finally mixed together to produce a love child of death, dismemberment, and amputee fellatio! Taking the very finest elements of the Vietnam POW movie, the stolen Nazi gold movie, and the micro-budget mid 1980s Italian action movie, Dog Tags manages to even work in a strip club scene for no reason except that director Romano Scavolini (Nightmare In A Damaged Brain) is just that damn good! Could anything less be expected from the brother of the writer of American Rickshaw? Continue reading

Massacre in Dinosaur Valley (1985)

This Brazil-set cannibal epic from one of your off-brand Italian auteurs (Michele Massimo Tarantini) is an entry level one meaning that normal people will be repulsed by its sleazy smorgasbord of violence which includes people shot, impaled, gutted, raped, enslaved, drowning in quicksand, dying in plane wrecks, animal abuse and of course a breast scratched by a triceratops claw. Continue reading

Rolf (1984)

rolfcoverMario Siciliano was a pretty minor player as far as Italian scuzz cinema goes with credits on a few spaghetti westerns, a bunch of sex comedies, and Evil Eye. Mario proves though that it isn’t how much you do, but what you do with what you have. Some folks like Lamberto Bava or Bruno Mattei may be willing to share their gifts with us three or four times a year. Others, like Mario, may simply explode one day on the scene and burn brightly for a single film or two before returning to the relative obscurity whence they came. Continue reading

Virus (1980)

virus-1980-posterMeteor strike, nuclear war, zombie outbreak. All ways our world could end horribly where the dead are the lucky ones (as the various movie posters would undoubtedly exclaim). But there is another apocalypse we should add to the list. To the top of the list that is. Big budget foreign end of the world movie riddled with actors familiar from mainstream domestic film and TV cashing easy paychecks. Continue reading