Spellcaster (1992)

Starring Adam Ant, Richard Blade, Gail O’Grady, Harold Pruett, Bunty Bailey, Kim Johnston Ulrich, Michael Zorek, Martha Demson, Traci Lind, William Butler, Michael Deak, Donald Hodson, Marcello Modugno, Dale Wyatt

Directed by Rafal Zielinski

Expectations: Moderate. I’m excited for this, but I don’t think it’ll be good.

On the general scale:
twostar

On the B-Movie scale:
twohalfstar


Spellcaster is yet another casualty of the fall of Empire Pictures. Like Robot Jox before it, Spellcaster‘s fate hung in limbo for many years before it finally saw release. The film was originally produced in 1988 and it shows, with the cheesy 80s music video opening the film being the first clue. So don’t be surprised when queuing this up, it never once feels like a horror film from 1992. Four years may not seem like a lot, but in the world of horror films, the differences are night and day.

Spellcaster follows the traditional horror film “people stuck in a location” formula, with these people being brought together by a TV station’s prize giveaway of a trip to an Italian castle and a chance to win a million dollars! The characters here are fun for the most part which counts for a lot, but there’s not enough development of any of them to make you care about the proceedings.

Continue reading Spellcaster (1992) →

Dolls (1987)

Starring Stephen Lee, Guy Rolfe, Hilary Mason, Ian Patrick Williams, Carolyn Purdy Gordon, Cassie Stuart, Bunty Bailey, Carrie Lorraine

Directed by Stuart Gordon

Expectations: Low. I didn’t know this was Empire International before I started watching it, otherwise I would have expected more initially.

On the general scale:

On the B-movie scale:
threestar


With Dolls, I’m continuing my trek through the Empire International/Full Moon catalog. My girlfriend, after watching Ghoulies with me, felt a strong urge to re-watch this film which she had seen as a kid. As the credits began to roll and I saw Empire and Charles Band’s name, I immediately knew why she was compelled to re-watch Dolls. The power of the Full Moon had struck once again and she was powerless to do anything but watch this again. On the strength of Ghoulies I knew that I wanted to watch more of these films, but I had not expected Dolls to be one of them. I love it when a plan comes together. I happened to post my review of Ghoulies last Tuesday and now with this on Tuesday, I’m thinking of making every Tuesday for a while dedicated to Empire International or Full Moon films. I was trying to think of a snappy name for the day, but all I could come up with was Terror Tuesdays or Tuesday Trash. If anyone can think of something cool, let me know. Anyway, look forward to more of Charles Band’s brand of horror.

Dolls does not live up to the bar that Ghoulies set in my head. I still enjoyed this a great deal, it’s just not nearly as well made or fun as Ghoulies was. With that out of the way, let’s get down to business. Dolls opens with a girl named Judy riding in a car with her dad and stepmother. The parents here are downright evil and verbally abusive to little Judy. While a normal, well-adjusted person might be offended by their insults, I simply thought to myself, “Hmm, I hope they’re doing what I think they’re doing… setting these bastards up for some seriously gratifying death scenes!” The car breaks down and they all start hoofing it down the road in the pouring rain.

Continue reading Dolls (1987) →

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