This is yet another of the "yokels terrorize yuppies" genre which
has experienced a recent upsurge in popularity. This particular one
comes from the foreign sub-genre, which means that it's not about
smart-ass, reckless, and disrespectful yuppie students heading for the
country and getting raped and tortured by toothless inbred yokels from
West Virginia, but is instead about those same characters heading to
remote foreign locales and getting raped and tortured by wealthy
neo-Nazis (the Hostel sub-sub genre) or swarthy, mustachioed,
resentful natives (the Turistas sub-sub genre). Actually in this case
the kids have less trouble with the local people than with the local
flora, which consists mostly of some killer crawling snapdragons which
seem to be a hybrid created by crossing vines with Venus flytraps and
the plant from Little Shop of Horrors.
The requisite stereotyped yuppies with an undue sense of American
entitlement, not content to hit the usual tourist locales, make their
way to some remote and forgotten area to see some Mayan ruins which
have been preserved particularly well and are not listed in any of the
Little known fun fact: those Mayan pyramids and temples should not
be called "ruins" at all. They are not ruined. They look exactly the
same as when they were built. The expert Mayan architects just created
them that way to give them a retro look, just as we build
faux-Colonial villages. That may sound like modern thinking to you,
but the Mayans were far more advanced than we realize, and we have
much to learn from their ancient wisdom. They already had precise
astronomy, frosted toaster pastries and color TVs when Europeans were
still living in houses made from their own feces.
It's one of those movies designed to make you squirm. One of the
male students has to have his legs amputated by the others, and one of
the girls has to have the creeping vines removed from inside of her
with some makeshift surgery followed by a scene where a long string of
plants is pulled from her, like an endless string of scarves being
pulled out by a stage magician.
The film offers no explanation for the
strange supernatural plants, nor history of the haunted pyramid, and the kids are not very appealing,
but that is just as well. Considering their fate, the audience is
probably not meant to have an emotional
investment in them. You would watch
this one entirely for the repulsive gross-outs, which are creepy and
original, and not for the plot or characterization. It's a genre film
for those who like their genre films undiluted and uncompromised.
Now playing (it just opened Friday).
Here's the trailer:
Laura Ramsey does a pretty good (albeit
scene, and even offers a quick flash of lower frontal action, but
this clip is from a "cam,"
so you should view it as merely a preview of what is to come
* Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe).
* White asterisk:
Blue asterisk: not mine.
No asterisk: it probably
Catch the deluxe
version of Other Crap in real time, with all the bells and whistles,
Tell Me No Lies
Tell Me No Lies, aka In the Midnight Hour, is a Canadian thriller
staring Amber Smith. Amber's estranged sister has been killed, and Amber moves
to Santa Barbara and wins a midnight spot on the local college radio station.
She hopes to somehow make things right with her dead sister. During her first
night on the air, she gets a call from someone claiming to be the killer, and
may well be, because he knows intimate details about her sister's body. The
caller also knows what Amber looks like and where she lives, and promises to
kill her. The rest of the film plays out as a whodunit, with the added topspin
that Amber might or might not be killed before the killer is unmasked.
IMDb readers score this at 2.6, although the acting
is not half bad, especially from a bunch of actresses willing to show their
breasts in good light, and the cinematography and sound track are acceptable. Once you realize it is
the first film from director Emmanuel Itier, you know the problem. He did not close some plot holes in the script,
and even created some new ones with his blocking choices. Main problems
include showing the face of the man the dead girl has sex with just before her
death, the lack of motivation to show the female detective topless in a hot
tub, and the complete lack of character development for the two detectives
working on the case. They were also short on motivation for two of the
The IMDb score seems too low. Based on comments and linked reviews, people were trying to make it into a
softcore sex film or an erotic thriller, but it is really a straight thriller. The
nudity consists entirely of breasts only, and the sex scenes cut from foreplay
to afterglow. Add back in about three points for the film not being what the
voters expected, and we are in the right territory. The same script and cast in the hands of a competent director would have
resulted in a decent thriller, and had they upped the sex and fixed the plot,
it could have been an excellent erotic thriller.
Actually, it was supposed to be an erotic thriller. At least that's what the
director said in his notes on the DVD:
(The caps are his. He loves caps.)
"As I wrote it once in a song 'You cannot
kill what cannot die.' I meant that the Soul, the Spirit within us, cannot be
destroyed, only the body can be, somewhat, bent. Little that I know that I was
going to be able to express this philosophy in an Erotic Thriller! I want to
thank the Grand Mystery of Life, and Death, to always keep me on the Rocking
side of Eternal Inspiration"
If you think that is gibberish, you should see the movie, which he calls
his "True Erotic Punk-Rock Suspense Drama."
One of the many hilariously bad things about this film is that it was filmed
entirely in the director's house. The den with a
wet bar is a "bar" (with a hastily pasted "exit" sign added for ultra-realism!).
His rec room is a "disco." The upstairs bedrooms are a "college dorm." His
editing room is a "radio station."
The direction is unbelievably bad. In the movie's second scene, for
example, two cops have a little spat while standing over the body. They are
standing about 12 feet apart, so they can't both fit into a tight two shot.
How did the director resolve this? He shot it in real time with one camera.
The camera focuses on the one detective while he delivers his line, then pans
at vertiginous speed to the other detective for her line, then back and forth
so many times that I was getting nauseated. Several times the actors flubbed
lines or delivered them wrong (e.g., one character says "she would have ...
went"), but the director never stopped the camera from rolling. One camera,
In the process of that discussion, Mr. Male Detective determines that this
is the work of a serial killer, even though there are no other prior victims!
I guess they never told him at the police academy that "serial" killing would
have to require a minimum of two people, killed at separate times. Perhaps he
meant "cereal," or perhaps he went to that same police academy as Steve
The French really know how to make a movie. Caroline Ducey really gives it up as we get to see it all including oral sex, and
a legs wide open beaver shot. She is not shy that's for sure. You can also play the "Spot the Tool" game. Also a couple of "Babe in Bondage" scenes.
Aside from photographer John Derek whose three beautiful
actress wives could have been sisters (Ursula Andress, Linda Evans and Bo
(Derek), only Mr. Cruise has had so many beautiful trophy wives to his
credit: ie: Mimi Rogers, Nicole Kidman and Katie Holmes.
Roger Vadim had to be a contender. He was married to Brigittte Bardot,
Jane Fonda, Marie-Christine Barrault, Annette Stroyberg, and Catherine
Schneider. In his spare time he had a child by Catherine Deneuve!
Interestingly, Derek and Vadim were two of the worst major filmmakers who
ever lived. Vadim directed more than 30 movies and not one of them is rated
higher than 6.5 at IMDb. He was a whiz kid compared to Derek, whose five
films are rated between 2.2 and 3.9.
Perhaps they spent too much time fuckin'.
Based on the comments of Mimi Rogers, that's certainly not a problem
Which leads us to Rok's teaser-preview of Mimi in Full
Psycho Cop 2
This is the fourth of a five-part series featuring
the famous 6'2" babe, Julie Strain.