Friday, March 30, 2012

Khooni Murdaa (1989)

Yep, yep, yeeeeeep! Yes Virginia, there is a Bollywood Nightmare on Elm St.!

This one in particular-Khooni Murdaa-was made in 1989, four years before Mahakaal (the other Bollywood NOES), and it was because of this movie's ripping off of A Nightmare on Elm St.'s death scenes that Mahakaal opted for ripping off ones from later in the series, rather than just the first NOES movie.

The movie (which has no English subtitles) opens with one of those usual funny-looking (to us westerners as least) company logos, and has some calm muzak playing, then, without warning the movie suddenly switches to an image of a corpse and the creepy music ramps right up!

After the opening credits (which credit a guy for 'thrills') we cut to a guy with a bouquet standing outside a house where a teenage girl and her mother are chatting. The girl goes off to her room, and after changing clothes, sees a rose on her room's window. The mother comes in and the girl tells her about something to do with someone named Ranjit.

Meanwhile, Ranjit, an obsessive stalker type spies a couple making out in a car, and he runs over, bursts through the car window and slices the two up, filling the car with strawberry paint (though these aren't the worst blood effects that I've seen before).

The next day, a police inspector is in bed with his girlfriend/wife when he gets a call from the station about the murders. Then the girl from before, whose name is Rekha, goes to school-a medical college-and tells a cluster of people something. Then, when everyone goes to their classes, Rekha bumps into Ranjit. He starts ranting at her about something for a couple of minutes, then she walks off and the scene switches to Rekha walking in a street, at night, with a storm brewing, and then Ranjit pops up again and starts ratting, again! This guy!... There was only had a ten second break in between rants, both at different, completely random spots!

Then suddenly, a bunch of cops turn up and arrest Ranjit-Rekha was in on a sting. A sting that requires a dozen heavily armed policemen to take in a single stalker! Even for arresting a killer (which they might suspect him as being) that'd be overkill!

So Ranjit is taken to court, and it's here where one of the most confusing aspects of this film are most at play-in this movie, there are random words spoken in Engilsh. Some are just little phrases like 'hello friends', and some are very annoying, like the whole court scene, where the lawyers and judge keep switching from whatever Indian language they're speaking to English, then back again!

So Ranjit is found guilty...of something, and is put...somewhere, either jail or an asylum (I heard the judge say a word vaguely resembling 'mental'), and everyone is happy!...And it's nearly half-an-hour into the movie and Ranjit isn't even dead yet, let alone a dream monster!

So Ranjit is in a hospital and he hears Rekha's voice screaming 'I hate him' and something in Indian, which drives him over the edge and apparently gives him superstrength! He escapes the hospital, throwing people out of the way with no effort, and avoids gunshots as he runs off. Meanwhile, Rekha and her friends are having a Bollywood-style song-and-dance number...that goes for over six minutes!

When the song ends...finally...ends...Ranjit crashes the party, and after threatening Rekha, he ends up fighting away all of Rekha's friends (which isn't actually that big of a problem for this guy! They manage to get a rope lassooed around his neck, and the friends all pull the opposite ends of the rope, but even then Ranjit manages to snap the ropes with his bare hands! You'd need kryptonite to put down this guy!

The group manage to kill Ranjit by pushing him onto their campfire, burning him alive. Then the friends have what I can only assume is an I Know What You Did Last Summer conversation. They wrap the body up and drive it to a disused car lot, where they hide it. Next we cut to everyone in their class, and a goofy guy with a massive scarf rides in on a bicycle and starts talking to the class. A weird part (well, weirder) is when the guy (Indian comic Jagdeep) holds up a chalkboard eraser, leading the class to shriek and hide behind their desks, and they all go back to normal when he puts the eraser back, then he gets it out again and everyone hides again, and this goes on for a few more times. When the class ends, Jagdeep goes to the staff room and starts chatting up a teacher, leading to a strange scene.

Then I think a sleepover is arranged between Rekha and a friend, and that might finally mean that fifty minutes into the film is when the plot starts! We cut to the car lot, where Ranjit rises as a zappy-lightning-dream-ghost while some awesome music plays. He zooms to Rekha's house in a POV shot and rubs a rose across her, which she sees when 'waking up' and grabs, then she wakes up for real and Ranjit's laugh echoes around the room. Rekha's mother comes in to see what the problem was and she sees that Rekha is holding a rose (what Ranjit constantly tried to give her in life)...

Rekha's parents (the main police guy is her father) are very worried, and I think that they still think Ranjit's on the loose. A little while later, two of Rekha's friends are getting it on, and when the woman falls asleep, a disfigured Ranjit shoots lasers from his mouth at her, then levitates her. People who've seen A Nightmare on Elm St. may be sensing a 'vague' pattern here.

So Rod flee...Oh wait, am I calling him Rod? I guess I just must be getting confused with another movie, I can't remember what though. So 'Rod' flees, but is eventually captured by the police. Then we're treated to another scene with the weird teacher, Jagdeep, who I want to be killed by Ranjit Krueger right now! When class finishes, one of the girls goes home, then gets a phone call, which is I think meant to be another I Know What You Did Last Summer scene. She hangs up quickly, but the person calls again. She hangs up again, and disconnect the phone, but it starts ringing again. She answers it, and a snake comes out from the receiver...well at least she didn't get a tongue, like Nancy!

So Ranjit comes, and attacks the girl while she clutches the pillow to her chest. This scene would be intense, but the way it's done makes it seem like Ranjit's having a pillowfight with the girl! So Ranjit kills her, then Rekha's policeman father talks to all of the teenagers about something, then we cut to 'Rod' in his cell. Sooo, two death scenes within five minutes-good track record!

So the guy befalls the same fate as Rod in NOES, and all the teenagers go to the cell to see him, and find him hanging. Intense music flares!...and is the scene abruptly changes! Two policemen talk, then we cut to Jagdeep again, who's decked out in medical scrubs  and is teaching the class over one of the students doubling as a dead body. The 'dead body' grabs Jagdeep's arm, which makes the whole class laugh like three of their friends weren't murdered in the last few days! So the class ends, and later that night, a guy and girl are studying together. Everything goes fine, until she's posessed by Ranjit...

She goes up to him and starts stripping, so they go to the bed. While they're kissing, girl/Ranjit bites the guy's tongue out, stretching it into a hugely long size, then uses it to bind the guy to the bed, then she/he levitates the bed, spins it around and tosses out a window! She becomes unpossessed and runs out of the room, terrified, and says something to her mom (whatever it is, it doesn't upset the mother too much!). While the police arrive and talk with the mother, Jennifer goes...hey, am I calling her Jennifer? I wonder why I'm calling her that?

Oh yeah, THAT'S why!

So after she's eaten by the TV, the movie abruptly cuts to another happy musical number, which takes the form of a bizarre dream involving Jagdeep, and just like the last song, this one goes for six minutes as well! And then it's followed by the Jagdeep in an even weirder scene. Then the film gets serious again with the police doing...something involving groups of yelling prisoners in cages. Then Rekha is home and goes to take a bath, which doesn't end well...

She is left untouched by Ranjueger (that sounds like an awesome drink!), who just gives her a rose. She rushes to the phone and tells a friend about something. Then the scene cuts to one of the teenagers, who's in her kitchen when everything starts flying everywhere. She runs away, then bumps into Fredd...jit and is stabbed by his extendo fingertip claws. So of course, the natural course of action for the remaining teens is...go see a wizard!

So the wizard performs a ouija-board like thing, and chants stuff, eventually saying 'Ranjit!'. During this chanting, the wizard manages to do the impossible-out overact Jagdeep! So the kids leave and talk about stuff, and then comes the moment when I was at my most giddiest during this film! The Glen scene!

So how does the bed death play out in this version? Well only a dollop of blood goes up a few inches! So then the scene immediately cuts to Nancy talking to her father about Ranjit, and I guess she told him the whole 'my stalker is now an undead superman' story, which he doesn't seem to buy at all. Then the wizard suddenly arrives and starts talking to the father. Then cop-father, Rekha and the wizard go out to Rekha's friends (most of whom are all conveniently at the same place, at the same time!) and a fisfight breaks out between the teens and the cops (and wizard) complete with laser sound effects. Rekha, the wizard, and the cops fight them, and a couple of other friends arrive and knock the remaining 'bad guys' down.

One fight, three exploding fireplaces and one shock-surprise Jagdeep reappearance later, the teens finally go to the car lot to end the menace of Ranjit once and for all!...

Khooni Murdaa (translates to Deadly Corpse, I think) would have been a super fun watch, but it isn't really, thanks to its two hour running time, which feels a lot longer, in no small part due to the long, LONG superfluous musical numbers! And as for this two hours and over problem, many, if not all Bollywood horror films are that long!

The direction by Mohan Bhakri is good, and the movie is well-shot. As for the film's effects, they're pretty good for a film like this! The violence effects are good, and the bed scene is very well done, and made me wonder how the hell they did it.

The film's story and tone are crazy though! Over the first forty miutes are an 'obssessed stalker' storyline, with, stalking, serial-killing, a long-ish courtroom scene and a stalker's revenge scene to boot, and then the script suddenly 180's and turns into an Elm St. ripoff. And it would have been a decent Elm St. ripoff too, if the film wasn't nearly as long as the two NOES films it rips off combined!...

Speaking of what this film rips off, it's not content to simply rip off the first Nightmare on Elm St., no, it rips of NOES 3: Dream Warriors as well! A few of the death scenes are from Dream Warriors, as is the ending. The ending is a massive battle-royale between the remaining teenagers and Ranjit, while Rekha, her dad, and the wizard go to his bones and try and destroy them, which isn't easy when they're attacking you! Since they don't have dream warrior powers, the teens make do with beating the total shit out of Ranjit until da muddafuckah stays down! Of course, even though he temporarily dies when impaled by an antenna, he never stops his assault until he's destroyed by the wizard!

As for Ranjit, his make-up is ok. He doesn't look scary though, he looks like a burnt fish! And he never talks after his death, he only laughs maniacally. As for his powers, they're not clear to those who don't understand fluent Hindi, Tamil or whatever language this was spoken in. I'm not sure if he sometimes attacks people in their dreams and sometimes in the real world, or if it's all in the real world.

And how does the film end, you say? Well, abruptly for one, and without ending credits (though that may just be because I watched the movie on youtube) but here's how it all wraps up. Ranjit has been destroyed, and the surviving heroes all walk off and then SHOCK, SURPRISE Jagdeep (yes, he wasn't killed, which is good, because he's sort of entertaining.  Also, this is a different shock-surprise Jagdeep appearance, not the one I mentioned earlier-We really do see a lot of this guy!) suddenly pushes through a door with his teacher beau and acts weirdly as usual, and everyone laughs, even though they've only just destroyed an evil dream monster and several of their friends have just died, some only minutes prior!...

So this was partly good, but partly bad as well. But what of the other Elm St ripoff, Mahakaal? Will it be better than Khooni Murdaa?...

...No, it really isn't, it has many of the same problems, which I'll talk about soon enough...

Friday, March 23, 2012

Raw Force (1982)

 This movie is goofy insane! Also, Cameron Mitchell is willing to appear in anything!

Raw Force opens with a bunch of people flying in a plane to an island. While they fly over it and the opening credits roll, the VHS transfer dies a few times in static. The plane lands, and a bunch of heavys take a group of women out of the plane, where some monks are waiting for them. This sinister group is led by Mr. Speer (who has a 'historically subtle' choice of moustache and an over the top German accent) and his cohort, Cooper, a hippie-type. The head monk, Charlie (Vic Diaz) wants the women's clothes taken off, which Speer instructs Cooper to do, leading to some hilarious dubbing from the women, who only sound mildly inconvenienced at being stripped and thrown into a cage.

Charlie takes one of the women out of the cage, since she's 'too skinnny', which pisses off Speer. Cooper calms him down, and he and Speer go to leave in the plane, while the screen starts static-dying some more. The released girl tries to get on the plane, but is knocked over by Cooper, and while the plane leaves, the monks advance on her, laughing maniacly. Then a zombie samurai bursts from the bushes and kills her!...That did just happen!...I swear I'm not lying, and I also swear that this movie's insanity is still calm and in check so far!

Then the movie cuts to two guys heading for a boat. While they're bing driven there, one of them reads out a pamphlet of an island that was the home to several disgraced martial artists, and a sect of monks who raise the dead. They arrive at the boat and board it, and we see the boat's captain (Cameron Mitchell), who says a hilariously clunky line. The two guys are martial artists, Taylor and Schwartz, and there's a third guy, O'Malley, who is the 'guy who decided to come at the last minute'.

As the boat sails, the two guys spar on the boat with bo staffs, breaking various things, leading Mitchell to yell at the ships owner, Hazel. Next, Schwartz wants a woman for a trick, and a woman, Cookie is volunteered, who, unbeknownst to Shwartz, is an LAPD squad team member. He's teaching what not to do in case of an attack, and he ends up getting thrown against the floor by Cookie. Next we cut to Hazel, who is talking with Chin, a crewmember, about where the boat is docking next. Instead of going past Warriors island (the monks and zombies one), they are stopping by it and going on it. Chin warns the woman that only disgraced martial artists can go there, but is ignored by Hazel.

Before the boat goes to the island, the passengers take a sojourn in the nearby city. Two of the guys go to the Palace of 1000 Pleasures, then we cut to Cooper talking to Speer about the expenses of their jade smuggling operation (there's such a thing as A-grade uncut jade?) and how he's entitled to a bigger cut of the profits. Then the two go with some policemen (Speer may or may not be a cop) and raid the Palace of 1000 Pleasures. The two guys get away, along with most of the staff, and later that night, a bunch of passengers from the boat are at a bar. The guys are talking to Mitchell, until he leaves to go to the bathroom. When he walks in, he's held at knifepoint by Cooper, who orders him to walk back out again. Crewmember Chin sees the trouble and attacks Cooper and his men, leading to a huge brawl in the bar.

Cooper tries to get away in his van, but when he starts driving, one of the guys jumpkicks through the window and kicks Cooper in the face, leading the van to crash into a box full of chickens. Cooper and his thugs run away. The next day, the ship is leaving, much to the anger of Speer, who doesn't want anyone near the centre of his jade smuggling operation. A little later, everyone on the boat is celebrating the birthday of one of the passengers (with heaps of T&A!), leading to a bunch of strange people, from an over-macho male stripper, a bald bartender who gets ice blocks for drinks by bashing a massive cube of ice into bits with his head, a mafia wife who murdered her husband, and a super-religious guy who thinks fashion is satanic.

Come nighttime, everyone's having fun until the boat is attacked by pirates. Several passengers are killed (like the fat guy who says ow when he's axed in the back), as are several pirates, thanks to the main guys, and Chin. The remaining pirates set fire to the boat and flee, and the surviving passengers and crew escape in the lifeboats.

The next day, Speer and Cooper are back on Warrior island, and Speer reveals that the monks need women because female flesh helps raise the dead. They leave, and meanwhile, the passengers/crew are on their lifeboat drifting in open water, until they come by land-Warrior island!...

They decide to trek across the island to look for help. After a long time walking, they decide to camp for the night. The next day, they keep trekking, and they come across a cemetary. And even though Speer left the island, he's suddenly on it again, and he fires a bazooka at the group! Then Cooper and some other henchgoons (including a guy in a superman shirt with a katana) machine-guns at them with A-Team level marksmanship. The group fight them off (and manage to get ahold of the bazooka), and after the smugglers run away, the monks are suddenly behind them. They are taken to the monk's house or whatever, and will be given a boat to leave the island, but only if they prove themselves in battle against the island's fighters.

While the group feasts, the monk raise the dead warriors and are about to feed a woman to them. One of the group recognizes a woman at the feast from the Palace of 1000 Pleasures, and she tells him that there are several other women kidnapped by the monks in cages, and that one-an American-is with the monks. The group head for where the monks are about to sacrifice the American woman to the zombies and open fire with their weapons, leading to the darkly-lit action finale...

...It involves piranhas!

Raw Force is an insane and insanely fun odyssey of a film, from its jade smuggling, to the madcap boat scenes, the sojourn in Manila, to the final showdown between the cannibal monks and the kung-fu zombies, the terrible dubbing, the hilariously bad fight/violence choreography, and the fact that the movie has no idea whether or not it's serious or camp, and the fact that despite having a definite ending, it still has a title card saying...

Sure, it's been 30 years, but Raw Force 2 needs to be made! We need more sleazy Love Boat movies with cannibals and zombies!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Legacy: His Name Was Jason and May Monster Madness

There are two upcoming blogfests that I am participating in, 'The Legacy: His Name Was Jason', from Jenny Kreuger of Memoirs of a Scream Queen, which takes place on April, Friday the 13th, and the May Monster Madness blog hop on Annie Wall's blog, which goes from May the 1st to the 7th, in which anything horror related goes.
For the former, I'll be doing a post on the Friday the 13th 'trilogy', parts 2, 3 and 4, and for the latter, I'll be doing various different horror flicks (ghost, cenobites, Italian demons, Chinese and Fillipino horror, and some Fred Olen Ray's if youtube/google video have any).

I hope to have a fun time, and I hope that everyone else participating in the blogfests do as well!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Kurt Russell Day-Overboard (1987)

Note: I don't own this movie on DVD, so I rewatched it on youtube, and pulled screenshots from the same source, so the images might be a bit grainy and they have subtitles.

March the 17th, normally St. Pattie's Day, but a much more important reason to celebrate the day is because it's Kurt Russell Day! ...And I don't actually own any Kurt Russell moves, so I've resorted to looking on youtube for the whole of 1987 romantic-comedy Overboard...

The film opens with carpenter Dean Proffitt (Kurt Russell) being called onto the boat of snobby rich-bitch Joanna Stately (Goldie Hawn, so he can fix her shoe closet. While he gets the job done, the bitchy Joanna is disgusted at his 'slobbish' demeanor (leading to a great comeback from Russell-Joanna: "You know, forks were invented so man could at least make a pretence of seperating himself from the apes!" Dean: "So were thumbs."). A couple of days later, Dean finishes the closet, but it's not done to Joanna's 'satisfaction' so she fires him, leading Dean to have an angry outburst at her, which makes the boat's whole crew cheer! Joanna refuses to pay Dean and pushes him off the ship.

After borrowing replacement tools-for the ones destroyed by Joanna-from his friend, Billy (Mike Hagerty), Dean goes back to his house, where the local school's principal has come to visit and is being 'attacked' by Dean's kids. She tells Dean that as a single father (his wife died three years prior) he can't properly take care of his children by himself, and storms off.

Meanwile, come nightfall, Joanna realizes that her wedding ring is off her finger, and on the boat's deck. She goes out on her own to get it, and falls overboard, which her husband, Grant (Edward Herrmann) doesn't give too much of a shit about because he turns the volume of the tv he's watching up so he can't hear her cries for help.

The next morning, a garbage ship has picked up Joanna and she is taken to the hospital, suffering from amnesia. Grant goes to the hospital and is about to collect Joanna until he sees her being her usual abrasive self to a doctor, then he ditches her and leaves. Meanwhile, Dean sees a tv report on Joanna and thinks of a plan to get her back for what she did to him!...

Dean goes to the hospital and claim's to be Joanna's husband ('proving' that he is by telling the doctor's of a birthmark on her...think Carry On Screaming). Telling her that she's Annie Proffitt, he takes her home to his ramshackle house, and after explaining her 'past' to her, he gets her to do several chores (which involve a chainsaw and killer laundry equipment).

Over the next few days, Dean starts to warm to Joanna and vice versa, leading to Joanna helping Dean and Billy with their plans for a miniature golf course. Eventually Dean starts to feel guilty and decides to tell Joanna the truth, but gets cold feet and tells Joanna that it's her 'birthday'. They go out to celebrate, and grow closer.

Meanwhile Joanna's mother is calling the boat, forcefully asking Grant where she is, leaving Grant to go and get her back...

Overboard is a fun movie! It has very quotable lines throughout, funny scenes, adorable dogs, and Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn are loads of fun in their roles, and they both have visible chemistry with each-other. The rest of the acting is good, and there aren't really any bad performances. One weird part though is when Joanna's husband Grant randomly goes insane and think's he's a god at the end for no reaason!-(ala Hammer at the end of 1990: The Bronx Warriors)   Roddy Mcdowall (the film's producer) is only in the film briefly until a scene at the end, and he's very good in the role.

So in closing, despite being a romantic-comedy, a genre that I normally can't stand, Overboard is an entertaining, worthwhile watch.


...Yeah, this is a blog named after a Fu Manchu character, and I've reviewed a romantic-comedy of all things before I've gotten around to reviewing anything with 'The Devil Doctor'!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Not This Time, Nayland Smith's One Year Anniversary!

Well actually said anniversary was 7 days ago, on the 9th of March...

Let me tell you, it really doesn't feel like a year ago when I first penned the reviews for Jaguar Lives, and Frostbitten (which was a couple-paragraph long filler review, just so my blog would have some kind of post until I wrote and put together my first proper review).

It's been a fun year!       I didn't get around to watching the Howling series for my Howlathon, due to me being busy with other stuff;      despite my blog being named after Nayland Smith, I've practically reviewed everything under the sun except for a Fu Manchu movie (most differingly will be my upcoming Overboard review, to be posted on the 17th of March-Kurt Russell Day!);         I saw the great Dirty Dozen Mission double feature;             I would have watched and reviewed the goofy Street Fighter animated series if not for the fact that just as I saw the first two episodes, all eps of the show were removed from youtube;           I saw Fire Dragon, a movie that I'm not sure even exists, and my review may have been not only the only review of Fire Dragon on the whole internet, but also one of the few sources on the net (and definitely the most comprehensive) to even acknowledge the film's existence, but that day, blogger decided to screw me over for no reason and it sliced my Fantasy Mission Force/Fire Dragon double review right in half!;            I've reviewed a Christopher Lambert-Mario Van Peebles buddy action movie (that I accidentally spoiled the ending of!);             I talked about a not-very-well-known, fantastic Argentinian crime/horror show, Epitafios (Epitaphs);          I saw a Turkish film where Spiderman counterfeits lira, kills a woman with a boat propeller, wears a Hannibal Lecter skin suit, strangles a woman to death with a telephone cord, stab a couple to death in a shower, and feed a man's face to ravenous guinea pigs!;              I reviewed an Ulli Lommell (the first, and definitely not the last time I'll be talking about his cenobiticly bad films);            I reviewed one of forgotten 80's action hero Pierre Kirby's most obscure movies;         I watched and reviewed a horror box-set of mixed quality;               and to top it all off, there was the huge december (plus the tail end of november) where I wrote and posted nine, NINE reviews! (which took a LOT of effort and a LOT of procrastinaton to deal with-if I hadn't have procrastinated as much, I would have gotten over six more reviews up).

I've got to thank all of my readers and all of my followers. I'm not sure I would have gotten this far if no-one ever read this blog of mine-and I am glad that many did and still do!  Thanks everyone!   Now I've got to sign off and write the rest of the Adventures of Fu Manchu episode reviews, all of the Tremors: The Series episode reviews, and all of the The Persuaders episode reviews, as well several random films, ranging from sword-and-sandal, to wartime martial-arts "starring" Jackie Chan, a horror film staring one 'Sarah Bey', several Charles Bronson film reviews, several reviews of early Alfred Hitchcock films, to a random Dutch DVD (with no English subtitles) I bought of a Dutch detective series called Baantjer, several action films, namely the rest of the Daniel Bernhardt Bloodsport series and several Jim Wynorski and Fred Olen Ray action flicks, Italian post-apocalyptic and spaghetti westerns reviews, and much more! Here's hoping for another great year for Not This Time, Nayland Smith, and hopefully one where I won't be constantly be plagued by screenshot problems with my computer...Here's to many more years!