Gingerdead Man 3: Saturday Night Cleaver (2011)

Starring Jackie Beat (Kent Fuher), Paris Wagner, Steven-Michael McLure, Kimberly Pfeffer, Selene Luna, Jacqui Holland, Justin Schwan, Jonny Jay

Directed by William Butler

Expectations: Super low. Not a fan of the Gingerdead Man.

The Gingerdead Man series is one of my least favorite Full Moon franchises. The first film was absolutely awful, and while the second film is much better, it’s still pretty far from being anything I’d actively choose to re-watch. My dedication to reviewing every Full Moon film is strong though, so I soldier on to bring you a review of the latest entry, Gingerdead Man 3: Saturday Night Cleaver. Simply put, it’s bad, but fortunately for me it’s closer to the second film’s tone and quality so the film at least has some entertainment value.

The film opens with a blatant rip-off scene from Silence of the Lambs, where Clarissa Darling (get it– Jodie Foster was Clarice Starling) travels to the Scientific Research Institute for the Study of Homicidal Baked Goods to meet with the Gingerdead Man. Now if I remember correctly, Gingerdead Man was crucified by a team of Puppet Master knock-off puppets at the end of Gingerdead Man 2: Passion of the Crust, but as I’ve said before, continuity has never stood in Charles Band’s way of a good/bad movie. In any case, the cookie killer escapes into the Institute’s time travel wing that just so happens to have developed a time travel device for food transportation. Gingerdead Man jumps in and transports himself back to 1976 in the middle of a roller rink. So theoretically this means that the research institute on the hill shown at the beginning of the film is on the site of the old roller rink. Whatever. I understand that these movie are not meant for intense critical examination, but I like to amuse myself by applying logic to them and making the plot somewhat more complex than it should be.

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Demonic Toys 2: Personal Demons (2010)

Starring Alli Kinzel, Lane Compton, Selene Luna, Michael Citriniti, Elizabeth Bell, Billy Marquart, Leslie Jordan, Gage Hubbard, Jane Wiedlin

Toy Cast: Baby Oopsy Daisy, Jack Attack, Divoletto

Directed by William Butler

Expectations: I don’t have many, but I hope to enjoy it. Dr. Lorca is back!

On the general scale:

On the B-Movie scale:

Demonic Toys 2 opens with a long credits sequence where gloved hands take the exploded bits and chunks of the toys and sew them back together. Only Baby Oopsy Daisy & Jack Attack get this treatment, presumably because they were the only salvageable toys from all the explosive shotgun blasts to the face, etc… it’s not the budget, I swear. One can imagine that this is essentially what happened in Charles Band’s mind as the characters had sat unused for a very long time. Eighteen years after the original, Full Moon finally decided to give the toys a proper sequel, but unfortunately it’s hardly worth the effort.

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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:

On the B-Movie scale:

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.

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Arena (1989)

Starring Paul Satterfield, Hamilton Camp, Claudia Christian, Marc Alaimo, Shari Shattuck, Armin Shimerman, Brett Porter, Charles Tabansi, Michael Deak, Jack Carter, William Butler, Grady Clarkson, Dave Thompson, Ken Clark, Diana Rose

Directed by Peter Manoogian

Expectations: Pretty high. Look at that poster!

On the general scale:

On the B-Movie scale:

Like a sci-fi fan’s teenage wet dream, Arena successfully combines two of the universe’s most satisfying things, boxing and aliens. Add in a healthy dose of said aliens getting repeatedly punched and kicked in their foam latex faces and we’ve got ourselves a ridiculously fun slice of 1980s high-brow cinema. I can’t ask for much more than that!

Steve Armstrong just isn’t cut out to be a short order cook, but when an alien causes some trouble in the restaurant where he works, Armstrong gives him the old one-two and then throws him out through the front window. In the grand tradition of tough guy movies, he loses his job and proves just how badass he is in one fell swoop. His co-worker, a four-armed dude named Shorty, takes Armstrong in till he can get back on his feet but others have had their interest piqued by Armstrong’s supreme fighting skill.

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