Scavenger Hunt (1979)

Scavenger HuntStarring Richard Benjamin, James Coco, Cloris Leachman, Cleavon Little, Roddy McDowall, Richard Mulligan, Scatman Crothers, Tony Randall, Dirk Benedict, Willie Aames, Stephanie Faracy, Richard Masur, Maureen Teefy, Robert Morley, Hal Landon Jr., Vincent Price, Meat Loaf, Avery Schreiber, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Ruth Gordon

Directed by Michael Schultz

Expectations: Low.

twohalfstar


Hey you vultures! You want a review of Scavenger Hunt? Well, alright then! I’ll give you one! You’ve got till 5 PM Pacific Time to collect all kinds of crazy stuff and bring it back here, and whoever has the most points wins!

Here’s what you’re looking for:

Toilet Stuffed Fish Fake Teeth Kayak Teddy Bear
Hockey Stick Jack in the Box Head Safe Suit of Armor Police Uniform
Nitrous Oxide Cash Register Ostrich Basketball Hoop Bulletproof Vest
Medicine Ball Wedding Dress Innertube Pedal Car Foxtail
Cowbell Piñata Brass Instrument Rolls Royce Grill Microscope
Safety Cone Totem Pole Moose Head Baby Carriage The Fattest Person You Can Find

……….AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNNNND GO! Good luck!

Update: 5 PM has come and gone! It’s all over, folks! Hit the break for the review… you’ve earned it!

Continue reading Scavenger Hunt (1979) →

Trespass (1992)

Starring Bill Paxton, Ice T, William Sadler, Ice Cube, Art Evans, De’voreaux White, Bruce A. Young, Glenn Plummer, Stoney Jackson, T.E. Russell, Tommy ‘Tiny’ Lister, Hal Landon Jr.

Directed by Walter Hill

Expectations: As the final film of Ice Fest, I’m excited and a little sad it’s all over.


As soon as Trespass started, I couldn’t contain my excitement. The opening scene seemed designed specifically for me in this moment, as the second line in the film is spoken by Ice Cube, quickly followed by a line from Ice T. The scene is a series of close-ups as Ice T and his associates watch a video of one of their friends being murdered, intercut with the credits of the film. The structure of the scene builds excitement as you start piecing together the story that will play out for your enjoyment, but obviously for me there was another, more pressing agenda. Seeing Ice Cube and Ice T together in one film after eight solo films was too much for me to handle. No matter what the dramatic weight of the scene was, I couldn’t help myself. I had the biggest grin on my face and I was hooting with glee. The two Ices had finally joined forces. “Life is good,” I said to myself. And the best part of this story is that the movie that followed this pure, giddy joy was awesome.

After this opening scene we meet our two main characters, a couple of firefighters played by William Sadler and Bill Paxton. While attempting to save “Ted” Theodore Logan’s dad (Hal Landon Jr. for the non-Bill & Ted’s fans) from a burning building, Paxton acquires a package containing a golden Celtic cross and a newspaper clipping about an old Catholic church robbery. There’s also a map inside, so Paxton shows his buddy and they decide that treasure hunting for a million dollars worth of gold sounds a hell of a lot better than slaving away at the firehouse for the rest of their lives. The only caveat is that the building the map leads them to is deep in the bad part of town, and the situation quickly escalates to violence.

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Prison (1988)

Starring Lane Smith, Viggo Mortensen, Chelsea Field, Lincoln Kilpatrick, Tom Everett, Ivan Kane, Arlen Dean Snyder, André DeShields, Tommy ‘Tiny’ Lister, Stephen E. Little, Mickey Yablans, Larry Flash Jenkins, Hal Landon Jr., Matt Kanen, Kane Hodder

Directed by Renny Harlin

Expectations: Looks awesome, it has a director that went on to better things, Viggo and gore… I should like this.


Prison has a ton of stuff going for it. It stars Lane Smith, a character actor you know and love but probably don’t recognize the name (I didn’t). It co-stars Viggo Mortensen very early in his film career. It’s directed by Renny Harlin who would later go on to direct such favorites as A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master & Die Hard 2. The film is also produced by Empire Pictures and the wonderful John Carl Beuchler is on FX duty. In addition to that, the script was written by C. Courtney Joyner who later went on to write Puppet Master III & write and direct Trancers III. How’s that for some talent?

The film opens with an execution scene from the prison’s past. Lane Smith escorts the condemned man to his death by electric chair, but the dreamy quality of the scene suggests that all is not as it seems. As this is an 80s horror film, one can only assume that his soul cannot rest! Thirty years later, overcrowding in the prison system forces the state to re-open a penitentiary long since closed. They recruit Lane Smith, one of the old guards there, to head up the place as warden. Smith is haunted by the memories surrounding the electrocution, penetrating his dreams nightly. Before long, crazy shit starts happening for reals at the prison. It first comes to head when two men in solitary get a visitation from a very unwelcome spirit.

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