Thursday, May 21, 2009

THE GATE (1987)

Mediocre late 80’s supernatural horror that would have benefited from some gratuitous violence/gore and nudity. I saw THE GATE when it first came out and for all these years I’ve thought that the kid opened up the gate to Hell by backmasking a heavy metal album. That would have been awesome! But I was wrong, because the pit first opens up when a tree falls down. How...lame.

Anyway, so this hole opens up in a family's suburban backyard and nobody really thinks that it's strange that this large hole just showed up and keeps reappearing every time you fill it in. Random shit happens: a kid cuts himself near the hole; a intellectual disability dickneck buries a dead dog in the hole and BAM! Faster than you can say “HBO should discover Robert McCammon.” a bunch of ugly little minions start running around tearing up shit. They looked pretty menacing at first, but outside of the clawing up a door and unorganized your closet, they’re pretty harmless.  But I don’t think scary was what THE GATE was going for...hum…now that I think of it I have no idea what this movie is trying to do!  Still, even with the low budget and lack of action, THE GATE is an alright movie and a enjoyable time waster. You could definitely do worse. I think the reason this film has such a cult following now is because a lot of people saw it when they were kids.

Director Tibor Takacs went on to direct the smash hits MEGA SNAKE and MANSQUITO.

Part 2 - Gate 2: The Trespassers (1990)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

D.O.A. (1950)

Frank Bigelow (Edmond O'Brien) is just a regular Joe, a mild-mannered accountant who steps out to San Francisco for a few days of fun to get away from his smothering girlfriend. She never gives the guy a break! Once in SF things gets a little campy with the strange wolfish whistling sound every time a foxy dame walks by and the completely whacked out jive club scene, but then things take a serious turn when somebody slips some "luminous" poison in Bigelow's drink.

The next morning he feels sick and goes to the hospital. When they tell him he's been poisoned and is gonna die in a few days he freaks out - "This is fantastic! This is the most ridiculous thing! This is impossible! You're nothing but a coupla phonies!" - and goes running down the street like a madman. Once he calms down he gets pissed and goes out in search of his killer.

Not quite as hard-boiled as you would hope but still an awesome movie from beginning to end without a minute wasted.  Highly recommended.
Notice the names: Ernest Laszlo (Cinematographer), Marty Moss (Assistant Director) and Russell Rouse (Writer).