Hellfire Video Club: Post-Spooky Withdrawls
We all probably binged on some horror film last month in the lead up to all Hallows Eve. Now spending our time looking to other genres to usher us into the hibernation season. Want some interesting winter film recommendations? Tough shit! Here's another trio of demented horror films...
Bloody Muscle Body Builder in Hell
Shinichi Fukazawa, 1995, Japan.
A Japanese version of demonic-posession/haunted cabin classic "The Evil Dead". Plot is pretty similar, and the practical FX are also in the same ballpark - but this one goes absolutey ballistic. After quickly skipping through the set-up and introducing the possession element, the film then shifts into full Rampage-mode - an hour-long onslaught of increasingly bizarre gore/splatter set pieces ensues, constantly adding in avante-garde animation techniques to the mix. "Evil Dead" x "Hausu" is prretty accurate. This is much better than the new "Evil Dead Rise" film (which i didn't mind, but much preffered the 2013 Evil Dead remake that everyone else seemed to hate...)
Ron Switzer, 1991, USA.
SOV (Shot-on-video) muck about an unethical scientist making a something (possibly a serum??) that causes a man-monster to be born, who proceeds to walk slowly around corridors. Endlessly walking and going "urrr". This cursed beast (who looks like a normal guy with some bandages round his head) continues his Sisyphean task for what feels like an eternity, stumblig across a pool party and (IIRC) lots of Aerobics ladies and killing some people. This film is infernally slow - to the point it feels like one of those dreams where you can't move. All the actors look as though they've been hypnotised and the soundtrack is a one note synth/drum machine thing. In other words: It's pretty good, you should watch it.
Bernard Launois, 1986, France.
Another hypnagogic nightmare. The time focussing on a couple who's car breaks down in rural France forcing them to take off on foot, and get caught up with an old Nazi-potato man, a mummy, and an old dude who thinks his horse is the devil. This film has such damaged internal logic that it is impossible to guess what will happen next or where it is heading - which makes for a fun (if groggy) watch. These structural failures are a big feature in most of our favourite old horror films .... the 'auteur theory' is not taken so seriously these days, but there is something to be said for a lone filmmaker following their own eccentric path that can yield beautiful and rewarding results. This isn't that, but you know what i mean...