WTF Did I Just Watch: Mad Ron’s Prevues From Hell (1987)

As I was scrolling through the ‘Horror’ section on Netflix a few weeks ago, I realized that I’m just bored with a lot of the offerings on there.  Then my friend Chris told me about something that he and his son had watched.  Something gloriously bad.  Something from the 80’s.  Something called Mad Ron’s Prevues From Hell!  Who’s Mad Ron, you ask?  This is Mad Ron!


Oh, hi Mad Ron!  He sure looks like a character.  Ok – so what the hell is Mad Ron’s Prevues From Hell?  Well, it’s a terribly shot movie from 1987 where a ventriloquist named Nick and his zombie dummy named Happy show the audience in a movie theater (who happen to be zombies) old schlocky trailers and TV spots from various horror movies from the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s.  While this is going on, Mad Ron is locked up in the projection room (see pic above) for everyone’s safety.  In between the trailers are spoofy shorts involving the zombies in the movie theater that seem to go on forever…..and ever…..and ever.  Oh hey look – that zombie is pouring blood on his popcorn instead of butter!  For 15 minutes.  We got the joke in the first 30 seconds.

This movie screams the 80’s and that’s what I loved about it.  And I actually saw some trailers that I had never seen before, like Three On A Meathook or The Maniacs Are Loose.  There are some old favorites as well like Deep Red, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and Black Christmas (under one of it’s original titles Silent Night, Evil Night).  It almost felt like I was watching a snuff film at times, and I may or may have not taken a shower after my viewing.  So, if you enjoy 80’s horror or just really bad movie productions – then please do yourself a favor and seek out Mad Ron’s Prevues From Hell on Netflix.  If it’s been taken down from there, then seek it out on DVD on Amazon.  Now take a bow Nick and Happy!


Holy Exploding Heads And Robots! ‘Chopping Mall’ Is Getting Released On Blu-Ray!

Easily one of my most cherished 80’s horror movies has always been Chopping Mall. What started with an amazing poster transitioned into a pretty amazing movie if you like cheesy 80’s acting, robots, boobs, and a nice exploding head.  And now according to Bloody Disgusting, we will now be able to see all of that in glorious Blu-ray form!

Vestron Video (google the name youngsters if you don’t know) is making a comeback and will be releasing Chopping Mall AND Blood Diner on September 27th.  Focusing on the former for now, we will get a load of special features – including:

• Director/Co-Writer Jim Wynorski, Actress Kelli Maroney, and Co-Writer/2nd Unit Director Steve Mitchell
• Historians/Authors Nathaniel Thompson (Mondo Video) and Ryan Turek (Shock Till You Drop)
• Director/Co-Writer Jim Wynorski and Co-Writer/2nd Unit Director Steve Mitchell
• “Back to the Mall”
• “Chopping Chopping Mall”
• “The Killbots”
• “Scoring Chopping Mall”
• “The Robot Speaks”
• “The Lost Scene”
• “Army of One”
• “Chopping Mall: Creating the Killbots”
• Isolated Score Track by Chuck Cirino
• Trailer

It’s a happy day in horror land, folks!  Just think, you will now be able to see the clip below in Blu-ray quality.  Stay tuned for more info on the preorder details.

God Bless The Greatness That Is Called ‘Psycho Cop’

In 1988 when Maniac Cop was released, most horror fans thought they had seen the greatest killer cop movie of all time.  Yes, I’m embellishing that quite a bit, but just go with it for the time being.  And then 1989 came and with that also came the birth of Psycho Cop!  That’s right – Psycho Cop….the clear and obvious knockoff of Maniac Cop, but with more cheese.  I do love me some extra cheese.

If ever there was a movie that needed to be released on Blu-ray, it’s Psycho Cop.  Officer Joe Vickers (Robert R. Shafer) is not to be fucked with and it’s a monumental performance for the ages of horror cinema.  If you couldn’t already tell, I like to make things sound much bigger and better than they actually are.  Who are we kidding…..Psycho Cop is pretty terrible, but in the best way possible.  It’s pure ‘alcohol consumption necessary’ viewing and needs to make no apologies for that.  And I bet that you’ll be saying the joke “What has 18 legs and 2 tits?” at the next party you attend.


Review: Cool As Hell (2013)

Boobs.  Weed.  Gore.  Zombies.  More Boobs.  That got your attention, didn’t it?  Welcome to the world of James Balsamo’s Cool As Hell – a movie that knows it’s identity and wears it proudly on it’s low budget sleeve.  Like the spawn of Troma and Lloyd Kaufman, Balsamo reminded me here of the first time that I saw The Toxic Avenger.  Suspect acting, choppy editing, amusing practical effects, and bountiful boobs.  In the end, I was mildly entertained and appreciated what I had just watched.  That my friends, about sums up my experience with Cool As Hell.

I hate spoiling plots, so I’ll give a general synopsis for you:  Rich (James Balsamo) is a comic book shop owner who is just a nice guy who wants to get laid and/or meet a nice girl.  He has an ugly Hawaiian shirt that takes a verbal beating, as does his cheetah hair, and his friend Benny (Dan E. Danger) comes along for the ride in what is Rich’s seemingly uneventful life.  That is until he unknowingly befriends a demon named Az from the third and a half level of Hell.  From then on, Az is indebted to Rich and becomes his demonic mentor and friend, until he can collect a soul to fill his soul quota.  Oh – and there’s a love story thrown in there too and another evil demon that unleashes zombies and other equally bad stuff onto Earth.

Cool As Hell earns some points for it’s random cameos that are thrown in, with my favorites being David Naughton (An American Werewolf In London), Tim Ritter (Truth Or Dare), and wrestling legend Tommy Dreamer.  And there are a lot more, mostly blink and miss ones, but the cameos definitely add to the fun factor.  And speaking of the fun factor, I think I had to rewind the strip club scene more than once, but not because it was “sexy”.  That scene alone belonged in a Troma movie and I still can’t tell if it was meant to be as bad as it was.  But it’s moments like that, where Cool As Hell gets more points.  This is a bad movie, but it’s made with heart, and Balsamo isn’t a one trick pony either, as he takes on: directing, producing, editing, makeup effects, and even acting!

Now I haven’t seen James Balsamo’s two previous efforts (Hack Job, I Spill Your Guts), but after watching Cool As Hell, I really wondered what he could produce if he had a bigger budget and even more resources.  The template is there, and I think that the passion he has for the genre is what can really push him to that next level.  Perhaps his next movie, Mystery Meat, will be the movie that gives him that push?  Whatever the case, Cool As Hell is a bad movie.  But it knows it’s bad, and that’s what makes it good.  Confusing?  A bit. But grab a six pack, a box of nachos, and watch the movie.  Maybe get a little high too so you can balance everything out.

When Horror Movies Give You A Complex: The Kindred (1987)

As a 12-year-old boy, I was fairly impressionable.  My sensitivity was growing and my voice was changing at a steady pace.  So with sensitivity on the rise, I remember seeing the VHS cover in 1987 for the creature feature, The Kindred, and having to pause for a moment because it was the first time I had seen my birth name associated with a horror movie.

Well what the f*ck?  Why does Anthony have to be a mutant little baby creature?  And why did I have to think about if I should have been brought into this world? Now granted, my Mom was really the only one who called me Anthony, and it was usually when she was mad at me.  But I was 12, and you know I was doing the typical 12-year-old shit back then.  So I heard the name Anthony a lot.  And to make matters worse, just watch The Kindred and see how many times they say Anthony and associate it in a non-flattering way to this murderous slimy sucker.

But maybe I should have embraced it back then, and I should find a way to embrace it now.  It’s somewhat an honor I suppose to have your name muttered in correlation with something evil in a horror movie.  Would it have killed them though to make Anthony look a little more menacing?  C’mon FX people!  He does look awfully similar to the claymation wonder from the ZZ Top video for “TV Dinners” that I talked about last week:

*they really are adorable at that age*

Now the real sad news besides me being an overly sensitive 12-year-old boy, is the fact that The Kindred has never been released on DVD.  Is it a good movie?  No.  But is it required 80’s cheesy horror viewing?  Maybe.  I’m sure at some point it will get that slightly deserved release, but if your name is Melissa, I must warn you.  That character in the movie turns into an ugly gill-faced fish woman at the end.  Enjoy!

*looks like we’ve got bigger fish to fry*