Shadow: Dead Riot (2005):
"Shadow comes on like the low-budget love child of
Evil Dead and Reform School Girls, a crazy camp blitzkrieg of lockdown
melodrama, kung fu catfights, black-magic corniness, exploding torsos,
perverted doctors, impromptu zombie childbirth and bountiful lesbian
The New York Times
girls whaling on each other, flesh-ripping zombies and genre stalwart
Todd growling and glowering satanically from beneath a mane of
If you read those reviews, you probably already
realize that this is a peculiar movie. If you think about it a little
bit, you'll realize there is also something odd about the distribution
of this film. Why was it being reviewed in the New York Times in the
first place when it just came to video two days ago? The answer is
that it received a brief theatrical release. Given that it is a
kung-fu zombie women-in-prison film, you have to find that an amazing
accomplishment. Perhaps it is because it is the Citizen Kane of zombie
women-in-prison films with a Hong Kong style of fighting scenes. Just
so you know that all of these things are sewn together seamlessly, I
probably should tell you that the head zombie and the new girl in
prison are both expert martial artists with preternatural abilities
(lots of wirework), and they eventually fight each other. As it
happens, the zombie is also a voodoo zombie who exploded when he died,
and the girl is his daughter. Oh, yeah, and he can talk with the
living, although his army of the undead consists of the usual
growling, shambling, mindless, brain-eating kinds of zombies. Oh,
yeah, and the loopy prison doctor has been injecting her with her
father's blood, which he saved from the post-explosion mess ...
... and there are about a million other such
bizarre plot elements
Let's face it, the plot actually defies any kind
of concise, conventional description. If you really want the
has a detailed summary.
The inspiration for the film was a 1991 Hong King
The Story of Ricky, which one reviewer
described as, "so gleefully over-the-top that it exists in its
own ludicrous stratosphere and is one of the most memorable Hong Kong
exploitation films ever made." You could make virtually the same
comments about Shadow: Dead Riot, and add that it is also filled with
plenty of gratuitous shower and sex scenes, thus elevating it to even
greater exploitation heights than the original.
What can I say? I know it's exploitative junk
that probably should have gone straight to video, and probably
deserves its low scores at Metacritic and IMDb, but I found it
fascinating and very competent in many ways. It is not only
over-the-top with grotesque violence and ludicrous plotting, but it is
also imaginative and atmospheric. I like the clammy and stylized
prison location they chose, and I like the lighting effects used to
make it seem surreal and otherworldly. I like the ever-charismatic
Tony Todd (Candyman) as the voodoo zombie. I like the fact that it
doesn't take itself seriously, and never hesitates to go to any silly
extreme. The film has some rough edges, and the acting is not good at
all, but in spite of that it's one of the more entertaining B movies
I've seen in a long time.
Here is a
zipped .wmv of the obligatory WIP shower scene. The following are
young Bill Shatner "sings" Harry Chapin's Taxi
- The same page has a link to his legendary interpretation of "Rocket Man,"
which is a must-see if you never have.
The $20 Bill to reveal a mysterious foreshadowing of 9-11
no idea what Stephen Berkman's photos are all about. I'll bet he doesn't know
either. But they sure are cool.
A "behind the scenes" featurette about Lucky Number Slevin
Yahoo now has seven clips from Lucky Number Slevin
ComingSoon.net now has five of Jack Black's "Confessionals" related to Nacho Libre.
CHENEY HAS NO FRIENDS AT MYSPACE ... Latest Trouble Sign For
Iran Cracks Down on Bloggers
"Tori Spelling says she's stopped trying to be taken seriously."
Star Jones knocked out cold by a football.
Be on the lookout for some thieves who look ruthless, but
incredibly well moisturized
"Starved for cash, the New Orleans school district is
taking a long shot and hoping to sell its flooded, unsalvageable school buses on
"Top Ten Ways Barry Bonds Can Improve His Image"
- 2. Switch from steroids to hookers to become like lovable Babe Ruth
- 1. For the love of God, give some of them 'roids to the Knicks!
Hi. I am a former dictator living in Nigeria, and I need
your help to get my money out of the country
"A Script Review For Quentin Tarantino's DEATH PROOF!!"
Singer Tom Jones is knighted Sir Thomas
The passing of a great American tradition:
Hooters Air calls it quits
"The Broadway revival of 'Three Days of Rain,' starring
Julia Roberts in her Broadway debut, is pretty much sold-out for its three-month
Some back issues of Cafe, a sort of Swedish equivalent of
Stephen Colbert discusses Easter
- "It doesn't take a biblical scholar to see how Jesus is related to things
like colored eggs."
Colbert talks to former FEMA chief, Michael Brown.
Stephen Colbert debates school vouchers with his liberal
A report from Stephen Colbert, father-to-be - of a baby
Colbert's word of the day - "tense"
If Jerry West is the NBA's logo, should he be?
Looking for a subject for your Ph.D dissertation?
"Paris Hilton vs. Lacey Underall: A comparison
between Paris Hilton and the spoiled
rich bitch from the movie Caddyshack."
Former Pro Wrestler Nicolai Volkoff Seeks Political Fortune
Cheerleader Guy sends in this proof that America is still the greatest
country in the world ...
The British Ban Skimpy Cheerleader Outfits
- This story quotes, I kid you not, a representative of the British
Cheerleaders' Association. (Full name: The Royal and Ancient Athletic
Support-Prompting Association of the United Kingdom and the Channel Islands.)
Our public service announcement for the day.
How to pour Ketchup (Catsup). Full technical explanation.
"Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said deputy applicants
have been rejected because they have had sex with animals."
- "The sheriff said he decided as a matter of policy to reject applicants
who had sex with animals — something he said shows up on polygraph tests —
even though they technically were not breaking the law. Arizona is one of 14
states without laws making sex with animals illegal."
Colbert and Jon Stewart discuss George Mason's Cinderella
Chief Military Correspondent for the New York Times talks
to Jon Stewart about his book Cobra II.
Jon Stewart looks at the resignation of the President's
chief of staff
Jon Stewart talks to Newsweek's Fareed Zakaria
The Daily Show asks: What's the matter with Denmark?
Silent Bob explains how Jason Mewes won over the studio
suits who wanted to cast Seth Green as Jay in Mallrats.
Britney says women should masturbate
- Especially if the alternative is sex with Kevin Federline
- "She said Touch of My Hand is an ode to masturbation. The song is featured
on her new album In the Zone."
- Oh, THAT zone! (Slaps forehead)
How Portia broke the gay news to her 99 year old granny
Greeting cards rejected by Hallmark
- I know this sounds like a comedy premise or a bad article in Mad magazine,
but it is a real article about the ideas which Hallmark left on the cutting
- "Bill Gray said in his 18 years writing cards he's come up with about
80,000 ideas, of which 13,000 made it past his peers and about 7,000
ultimately became cards."
U.S. high court to hear landmark eBay patent case today.
Houston at her Whit's end
Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format.
Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.
Midnight Confessions (1995)
Midnight Confessions is to an erotic thriller as a summer breeze is to a
hurricane. While there is a lot of breast exposure, and strippers are being
killed, it is not very erotic and not very thrilling. Vanessa (Carol Hoyt)
hosts a late-night radio talk show devoted to sex talk and heavy breathing.
Her engineer is highly aware of her charms, as is a man who is killing
hookers. While each radio segment unfolds, a murder takes place, giving two
scenes of nudity intercut. Vanessa begins to suspect that one of her fans who
calls every night, and is stalking her, is the killer.
The identity of the killer should come as no great surprise to anyone, but
after watching it several times, I still feel the ending doesn't make sense.
There are two brothers. One of them is in jail for killing their whore mother,
the other is Vanessa's engineer. They have several conversations, and one of
them is obsessed with Vanessa. I just have no idea which one is which.
Many of the radio call-in sequences include nudity, as do the hooker
scenes. No violence is ever shown, and only one of the women shows bush.
Clearly, there was a concerted effort to avoid censorship.
Alexa Fiery, Julie Strain, De Ann Powers, Raven Alexander and Diana Cuevas
show breasts. Carol Hoyt shows breasts and buns, and Amy Rochelle does full
frontal. Both Lisa Comshaw and Monique Parent also appear in the film, but
keep their clothes on.
IMDb readers say 3.5 with 31 votes. There are no reviews listed. The story
is terrible, and not well told. There is nowhere near enough nudity to highly
recommend this. On the other hand, it is beautifully photographed, and no
scene overstays its welcome. This is a low C-.
|De Ann Powers
Pat's comments in yellow...
Tabloid photographers lurking outside Tom Cruise's mansion in Los Angeles
snapped photos of people carrying in large signs covered with such admonitions
as "Be silent, and make all physical movements slow and understandable." The
tabloids speculate that the people were Scientology elders, carrying in
"birthing boards" to remind Katie Holmes and everyone around her to remain
silent for seven days for her L. Ron Hubbard-mandated "silent birthing."
It supposedly prevents the newborn from suffering "psychic damage" from hearing
its mother groan or scream.
* Maybe those are just cue cards for Tom to use the next
time he's on
Sharon Stone says that as an AIDS awareness activist, she always carries condoms
to hand out and advises teenagers to engage in oral sex. She said she was in a
store and saw a mother tell her teenage daughter that the outfit she was trying
on was too alluring. When her mom walked away, Stone told the teen, "I'd like
to give you a two-minute conversation about sex." She said she told her what
she tells all teens: that "oral sex is a hundred times safer than vaginal or
anal sex. If you're in a situation where you cannot get out of sex, offer a
blow job. I'm not embarrassed to tell them."
* But remember she's not a doctor...If she were, she
would've been Bill Clinton's Surgeon General.
* An A.P. poll found two-thirds of Americans think people swear in public
more than they did 20 years ago
...The other third told the pollster to "Fuck off!"