Deadly Weapon (1989)

When Zeke finds a crate marked “office supplies” floating in the local river, takes it back to his dump of a house and opens it to find an advanced, highly destructive anti-matter ray gun, the audience’s excitement builds in anticipation of the entire hick town of King Bee, Arizona being zapped into the Negative Zone, along with the abusive family, bullying kids, and cruel school officials who make his life hell.

But a funny thing happened on the way to the rampage as Zeke spends much of the film holed up in a cafe, holding the mayor, sheriff, and town pastor hostage. And then anonymous Saturday Night Live alum Gary Kroeger shows up as a smarmy TV personality to interview the troubled Zeke. Didn’t director Michael Miner know that whenever Kroeger came on SNL, that meant it was time for a bathroom break? Continue reading “Deadly Weapon (1989)”

Creature (1985)

It’s been a while since I’ve been on any space missions and even longer since I did a hitch on one involving skulking around an ancient alien archeological site, busting open strange storage cases, putting the make on the ship’s sexy computer expert and arguing with the corporate douche aboard whose main mission seems to be to put everyone in as much danger as possible.

But even in my semi-retirement, I still know enough that after battling a space monster who ate almost everyone on your ship, you need to do more than poke him a couple of times after electrocuting his slimy butt before pronouncing him dead and leaving your old lady all by herself with it. Continue reading “Creature (1985)”

Monster Dog (1984)

Monster Dog was written and directed by Claudio Fragasso. Claudio was a frequent collaborator with Bruno Mattei, but he also had a decent-sized body of work he did on his own. Beyond Darkness, Troll 2, and Night Killer all demonstrated what he could do without Bruno’s help.

With Monster Dog, Claudio tells the tale of a monster dog that is terrorizing the countryside and who may have some connection to music superstar Alice Cooper. Regardless of who else is involved, fans of the big name talent associated with this project will probably figure that his abilities can overcome the obvious obstacles the movie suffers from. But alas, I am sad to report that the unfortunate presence of Cooper was even too much for Claudio to overcome! Continue reading “Monster Dog (1984)”

Thunder II (1987)

ThunderWarriorIICoverWhen we last saw Thunder, he was shooting arrows into cops, blowing up cars with a bazooka, and demolishing a bank and the police station in his home town with a stolen front end loader. Forced to take the law into his own hands when an Indian burial ground was being desecrated and when his girlfriend was almost raped, Thunder clearly didn’t have the time or patience for the White Man’s law. Especially since it was being enforced by crooked cops who hated Indians! It makes perfect sense then that Thunder II finds Thunder a deputy sheriff! Continue reading “Thunder II (1987)”

Thunder (1983)

ThunderPosterWhat Fabrizio De Angelis was able to accomplish with Thunder (Thunder Warrior in the U.S.) as a first time director is undoubtedly not unprecedented. I’m sure there’s several good examples of directors who make good movies their first time behind the camera, but I’m a man, so all I know is sports. Besides, what Fabrizio did here is more akin to winning a championship as opposed to just making a better than average flick. Continue reading “Thunder (1983)”

Curse II: The Bite (1989)

Vacations are a funny thing. Depending on the circumstances they can go from awesome to disaster and back again with little warning. For example, when I was a kid in Chicago, my parents threatened each other with divorce while we stayed in some flea bag motel, but then my sister had to ruin all those good vibes when she threw a tantrum at the Field Museum.

Likewise, for Lisa (Jill Schoelen only two years removed from The Stepfather and her greatest success) there are break ups and screaming that mark her cross country holiday with her boyfriend Clark (soap opera legend J. Eddie Peck). Of course those involve Clark mutating into a snake, eating her pet birds, and worst of all, going on a murderous rampage and not killing Jamie Farr’s character. Continue reading “Curse II: The Bite (1989)”