[Review] The Green Slime (RetroFantasma, 1968) – by Paul Cardullo

Paul Cardullo returns with another Groovy Gory Gruesome Gold entry that should not be missed. Doc Rotten and Paul Cardullo ventured to the RetroFantasma event recently at the Carolina Theatre in Durham, North Caroline to catch a Sci-Fi classic double feature, the epic Forbidden Planet (1956) and the film Paul reviews here and now, The Green Slime (1968). Paul shares his views on the ups and downs of this z-grade classic that should not be […]

[Review] Effects (1980, Groovy Gory Gruesome Gold) – by Paul Cardullo

Paul Cardullo takes a look at an unusual Groovy Gory Gruesome Gold film this week — writer/director Dusty Nelson‘s Effects (1980). Though it was shot in 1978 and ostensibly released in 1980, it did not receive a proper release until the DVD came out in 2006. Paul takes a look at the new 4K Blu Ray restoration just released by American Genre Film Archive. The cast and crew is comprised of a number of once-and-future alumni of […]

[Review] Re-Animator (1985, Groovy Gory Gruesome Gold) – by Paul Cardullo

Paul Cardullo tackles another retro classic with this week’s Groovy Gory Gruesome Gold entry. Arrow Video is releasing a limited edition of the iconic Re-Animator (1985) with a special edited cut of the film and tons of extras. Paul is here to give his thoughts on the film, enjoying the opportunity to revisit a classic that holds up today just as awesome as it did when released 32 years ago. Check out his review below. […]

Evil Ed

“Evil Ed” (1995): Goofy, Goopy Love Letter to 1980s Horror

One can tell when a horror film is made by fans of the genre; there is a certain love for the material that comes through. Of course, this is even easier to tell when the filmmakers fill their movie with homages to their favorites. Such is the case with Evil Ed (1995), a goofy and goopy low-budget Swedish horror comedy that wears its love for 1980s horror on its sleeve. A mild mannered film editor […]

Pulse (Kairo) - Ghosts on the Internet

“Pulse” (“Kairo”) (2001): A Creepy Modern Classic of Terror, Isolation, & Dread

The impersonality of modern society can lead some people to feel absolutely alone even when they are in the midst of a crowd. Writer/director Kiyoshi Kurosawa infuses this idea into his super creepy and disturbing modern horror tale Pulse (Kairo) (2001). Visitors to a mysterious website find themselves haunted by shadowy figures and subsequently lose the will to live. Can a group of young people find out what is happening before they end up dead […]

An injured woman lies on the floor and reaches up toward the camera pleading for help

The Bird With the Crystal Plumage: A Near Perfect Giallo From the Genre’s Golden Age

Noted Italian director Dario Argento’s directorial debut, The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (L’uccello Dalle Piume di Cristallo) (1970), is not the first giallo, but it is one of the prime examples of that genre. An American author in Rome witnesses an attempted murder in an art gallery, which may be tied to a serial killer stalking the city. He has seen a vital clue but cannot recall it. Now, as he mounts his own […]

Madhouse

“Madhouse” (1981): Unusual Giallo Featuring Death by Rottweiler

Madhouse (1981) is an unusual thriller that is a hybrid of an American slasher and an Italian giallo and which features an unconventional murder weapon — a Rotweiller. A young teacher is frightened for her life when her deformed twin sister, who tormented her as a child, escapes from the local mental institution. Their twenty-fifth birthday is approaching, and many people close to the main character are either disappearing or being found dead. Though it is […]

Wolf Guy

“Wolf Guy” (1975): Funky Werewolf Film Without a Werewolf

The film Wolf Guy (Urufu gai: Moero ôkami-otoko) (1975) is pretty hard to classify. The lone survivor of a werewolf clan investigates murders reportedly committed by an invisible, phantom tiger. As he delves deeper into the mystery, he finds himself in the clutches of a shadowy organization that has other plans for him. The film is evocative of its era, feeling like a mid-1970s cop/detective drama. Starring martial arts legend Shin’ichi Chiba (better known as […]

Aylmer the monster from "Brain Damage"

“Brain Damage” (1988): Social Commentary Served With Gore, Laughs, & A Brain-eating Monster

Writer/director Frank Henenlotter’s Brain Damage (1988) is a thoughtful and powerful exploration of the dangers of drug addiction. It also happens to be a gory horror-comedy featuring a singing, dancing, phallus-shaped, brain-eating monster. A young man awakens one day to find a strange creature somewhat attached to his body. The monster provides him with hits of its drug-like venom, but it demands to be fed human brains in exchange. Combining puppetry, stop-motion animation, practical effects, […]

Caltiki: The Immortal Monster - header

“Caltiki: The Immortal Monster” (1959): Boring Blob but With Bits of Bava

There is a certain charm to 1950s low-budget monster flicks, though that charm can only take one so far. Caltiki: The Immortal Monster (1959) is an Italian riff on The Blob (1958). Scientists investigating possible causes for the fall of Mayan civilization discover a hidden cavern filled with treasure — and occupied by an amorphous monster. After one of their number is killed and another member maimed by the creature, they take a sample back […]

Dead or Alive: Final

“Dead or Alive: Final” (2002): Lackluster Sequel Proves 3rd Time Is NOT the Charm

Sometimes, it can become painfully obvious when a filmmaker loses interest in a particular series. Dead or Alive: Final (2002), the third film in director Takashi Miike’s action series featuring Shô Aikawa and Riki Takeuchi, appears to suffer from lack of interest. Set 300 years from now in a run-down city in a post-apocalyptic world, the population is kept in check and under control by forced birth control. With the help of an android fighter, […]

Dead or Alive 2: Birds

“Dead or Alive 2: Birds” (2000): A Return to Innocence — With a Touch of Violence

Mention the name of director Takashi Miike and bizarre visions of violence and depravity come to mind for many fans of his films. While Miike’s body of work certainly is filled with more than its share of unusual and disturbing imagery, it also has its softer moments. In Dead or Alive 2: Birds (Dead or Alive 2: Tôbôsha) (2000), Miike shows that he is equally skilled with displaying touching and emotional scenes as he is […]

Dead or Alive - Jojima

“Dead of Alive” (1999): Depravity, Violence, & Social Commentary

Director Takashi Miike is known for his often bizarre and violent films, but, as with George A. Romero’s zombies, the more exploitive aspects of Miike’s movies are generally in service to a broader social commentary. In Dead or Alive (1999), Miike throws his audience headfirst into the Tokyo underworld, where a gangster is waging a private war against both the Chinese Triads and the Japanese Yakuza. A police lieutenant with problems at home is investigating […]

Donnie Darko

“Donnie Darko” (2001): Enigmatic & Slyly Funny Existential Classic

When it comes down to it, life and death can be quite funny, enigmatic, and hard to classify. The same can be said for writer/director Richard Kelly’s existential comedy, mystery, science fiction thriller Donnie Darko (2001). A teenage boy begins having disturbing visions, including ones of a six-foot skull-faced rabbit that tells him that the world is ending soon. Are these simply hallucinations brought on by improper medication, signs of a mental breakdown, or is […]

House II: The Second Story

“House II: The Second Story” (1987): Good-natured Comedy Sequel Swaps Horror for Adventure

Not all film sequels share strong ties to their predecessors. Sometimes, the only connection is thematic, resulting in an anthology-like feeling for the series. Such is the case with House II: The Second Story (1987), the sequel to the horror-comedy House (1985). House II: The Second Story takes the audience to a completely different haunted abode than the first film. A young man and his girlfriend move into an old mansion he has inherited, which […]