aka Angel of Vengeance 1981 Written by Nicholas St. John (as N.G. St. John)
Directed by Abel Ferrara Ms. 45 is a genre classic, a required viewing exploitation film, and among the best rape and revenge movies ever made. Zoë Lund (then Zoë Tamerlis) is haunting as the mute Thana, whose life as a seamstress at a fashion house is shattered when she’s attacked by rapists twice on the same day. The second attack ends with Thana striking a blow atop the assailant’s head, killing him. At first horrified at what she’s done, Thana attempts to cover up his death, and takes the gun he leaves behind. Soon, her paranoia as she disposes of pieces of his dismembered corpse causes her to kill again.
Thana transforms from silent victim to silent avatar of death, walking the streets at night to become a target of attackers so she can eliminate them. As no one likes scummy rapists, Thana’s actions cause the audience to cheer for her, the excitement of seeing bad people punished mixes with the thrill of someone fighting back against her oppressors.
It soon becomes apparent that Thana’s search for vengeance has moved beyond rapists. She starts stalking a guy who is just making out with his girlfriend in the street. The target have moved from bad men to men in general, and by the end of the film she’s shooting every man she sees, indiscriminate of whether he is an awful person or not. The targets even go beyond human males, her landlady’s dog Phil (played by a dog named Bogey, which is too cool of a name not to mention) is aware that some sort of delicious rotting meat is in her apartment, and Thana attempts to eliminate him by taking him for a walk in heavy traffic. The audience sympathy begins to drain away like a leaky balloon. But Zoë Lund is just too charming, you can’t turn against her entirely even if she’s aiming a gun at your face. Thana’s rise and fall becomes another tale of power corrupting, her power of life and death corrupting her into a force that lashes out indiscriminately and becomes as bad as the people who turned her onto that path.
As fun as gunning down the guilty in the streets goes, who really should be the judge, jury, and executioner? Many of the men Thana shoots are not the nicest of guys, but haven’t committed capital crimes. They may treat their wives/girlfriends like crap, complain, and talk rowdy stuff, but is that worth death? Thana sees the worst in men, and many of the depictions of men in the movie are men who are only seen at their worst. How much of the view of how the male characters act is clouded by her perspective? It’s an extra layer of haze that may be present over the entire film, or may not exist at all. After all, as a man, I know how sick and twisted many men are. Read more…
Sleepy Hollow“Paradise Lost”
Written by M. Raven Metzner
Directed by Russell Fine
Hey, we only have room for ONE headless guy in this series, bub!
Sleepy Hollow jumps ship from it’s plotlines and starts a new thread, in a neat mid-season reboot of everything that causes characters to reflect on their life while still showing the scattered remains of a cancelled Apocalypse. The switch up is rather refreshing, both because it was so unexpected and because the end of the world danger was moving too fast to begin with. We were still down two Horsemen and five years before things are supposed to transpire. So even though I don’t trust this reboot, that’s long enough to have several other reboots that get the End of Days back on track.
Ichabod, Abbie, Jenny, and Katrina awaken by the four white trees to find Moloch’s head lying in a pile of ash, no sign of Henry, and the end of the world postponed for now. Six weeks later, things are still quite, though Ichabod and Abbie are still looking for any clue they can possibly find to show evil is still present in the city. It’s enough that Ichabod takes the slightest clue of a rotten fruit as evidence of occult activity, though in this case it shows there is strange goings on at a farm.
A Doomsday Cult run by actual demons (called the Devoli), who are searching for their master, Moloch. Ichabod and Abbie’s interruption of their activities are also interrupted by a random Angel named Orion, who slays one of the demons. He claims to have been trapped in Purgatory since the Revolutionary Times, where he was slain by the Headless Horseman back when he had a head, and only just now escaped Purgatory along with a lot of other people and things, including the Devoli. Orion claims to be the only one of the angels who goes to directly fight evil, and admires that the two Witnesses (Abbie and Ichabod) did more than just witness the end, but actively fought it. Of course, we all know this angel is going to be more than he appears, and it turns out he’s a rather single-minded destroyer of evil who has gone too far, and wants to steal the powers of the Horseman of Death for his own to purge mankind of wickedness.
This better be the real non-GMO organic or I’ll cut you!
Lifetime rips more scandals from the headlines with Kept Woman, which appears to be a modified version of the Arlene Castro kidnappings, with a healthy dose of 1950s women are objects sleaze thrown in to make things safe for television but still incredibly gross. For not only is Courtney Ford kidnapped, but the kidnapper has his own brainwashed Stepford wife #1 already who helps him try to break her in. But she’s not going to take that without a fight.
Jessica and her fiancé Evan just moved from the city into their dream home on a quiet suburban street. Soon after, Jessica catches her seemingly friendly new neighbor, Simon, in a strange lie and can’t let her suspicions rest. The danger escalates when Simon lures her inside his home and imprisons Jessica in his secret bunker, meticulously decorated in the idealized style of the 1950’s. Here she meets Robin, a woman who’s been held captive by Simon for several years and brainwashed into living as his faithful companion – a fate that is now set for Jessica unless she can somehow find a way to escape from Simon’s time-warped prison. Inspired by true events.
Creepy creeps being creeps? This looks insane! I’m totally there.
Kept Woman stars Courtney Ford (Dexter, True Blood), Shaun Benson, Rachel Wilson, Andrew W. Walker, Jesse Camacho, and Troy Blundell. It’s directed by Michel Poulette (Too Young to Marry) and written by the team of Doug Barber and James Taylor Phillips (Forget and Forgive)
Kept Woman premieres Saturday, February 28th on Lifetime!
The lineup for 2015 is incredible, and they didn’t even need to pull in some random studio film thanks to the magic of entirely awful non-mainstream productions.
Thanks to you, we have done two hugely successful Kickstarters over the past two years that funded us to be able to riff STARSHIP TROOPERS and GODZILLA (1998) + ANACONDA LIVE and simulcast to over 700 theaters across North America. These shows were a big hit, and this year we have the opportunity to perform FOUR RiffTrax Live shows with some of the most awesome bad movies ever. Are you ready? They are:
– THE ROOM!
– SHARKNADO 2!
– MIAMI CONNECTION!
– SANTA AND THE ICE CREAM BUNNY!
It’s a superfecta of bad movies. We call it… THE CRAPPENING.
We did it! We got the rights to ALL these cinematic masterpieces. Woohoo!!! And we can’t wait to riff ‘em live. To seal the deal, we’d love your help again. The cost to secure the theatrical rights and for the production itself is beyond doing this on our own, but it does work out if we get a little help from our fans.
The dates of the films:
– THE ROOM – Wed. May 6th! (Encore Tues. May 12)
– SHARKNADO 2 – Thurs. July 9th! (Encore Thurs. July 16)
– SANTA AND THE ICE CREAM BUNNY – Thurs. December 3rd! (Encore Tues. Dec 15)
And, yes, that’s the version of Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny that has the Jack and the Beanstalk inserts, not the Thumbelina version. And it’s in widescreen, for extra creepy bunny horror! I’ve never actually seen the Jack and the Beanstalk version, so this will be an extra-special Christmas treat. Miami Connection is legit one of the best movies ever made, but has so many weird things going on a running commentary would be a worthy addition. Sharknado 2 has enough cameos and weirdo gore there should be some great things going on. And also, The Room. What can be said about that that hasn’t been said a million times before? Go to the RiffTrax Live event and find out! Baring illness (as that’s the only thing that’s kept me away from the theater events before), looks like my 2015 theater budget just got a whole lot of rearranging going on to check all these out.
2015 Written by Kendall Clark
Directed by Darin Scott Megachurch Murder is a pretty keen take on Hamlet played in the world of church politics, complete with a ton of Shakespeare references tossed in. Hannah Spears (Shanica Knowles) is our Hamlet, her father, Hamilton Spears (Malcolm-Jamal Warner), winds up mysteriously dead, and the new church leader both announces a massive expansion of the church and also moves in on Hamilton’s widow, Martha Spears (Tamala Jones).
It’s important to note that Shaker Point, the church, is not a megachurch. The megachurch is the concept that new church leader Clay King (Michael Beach) proposes after his ascent to power. He’s supported by his son Marcus King (Corbin Bleu), while black sheep son Oliver King (Romeo Miller) is assigned to look after Hannah. Hannah has not taken her father’s death well, as highlighted by her showing up drunk to the church service that announces the expansion and ranting at the audience about disrespecting her father’s memory. No one takes Hannah seriously due to her constant drunken state (even Hannah), until she discovers a flash drive with a video message from Hamilton Spears to her detailing the shady goings on in the church leadership, and how he fears he’s in danger. But that drunk Hannah spills her wine all over the flash drive, meaning she has to enlist her computer-savy friend Harlow Gillman (Santana Dempsey ) to recover the message, which will take most of the film.
While that waits, Hannah tips her hand a few times with her suspicions, leading Clay to target her for elimination. Marcus’s scheme to drug her fails (Hannah has decided to remain sober during her investigation, but only pretend to be drunk so no one suspects her, thus she doesn’t ingest anything), and his attempts to grab her in church in front of her mother causes Hannah to fight back and Marcus to fall to his death off the balcony. At this point Hannah’s mom Martha suspects Clay knows more than he’s letting on about Hamilton’s death, and soon all the Spears and King family members are confronting each other on a bridge, and they all won’t get out alive (Though the body count is a bit lower than in actual Hamlet!) Read more…
Come on, Ashley, be a hooker! All the cool kids are doing it: Kristy, Mary Anne, Claudia, Stacey, Dawn, Mallory, Jessi, and Abby!
If you thought that since Lifetime had done the poor students turning to hooking up with dudes for money thing already this year with Sugar Daddies and wouldn’t touch it again, welcome to Planet Wrong! Babysitter’s Black Book is a very similar but very different tale of a poor student lured into the world of selling her body for money. Except now they are in high school! Dun dun DUN! Also it’s sort of maybe based on a true story they read the article title of online before making up their own version here. And maybe it will have some of the things Sugar Daddies lacked, or maybe it will make Sugar Daddies look like gold. Only time (and watching the movie) will tell!
Will there be a literal black book? And will I get to make more The Babysitter’s Club jokes when I write the review? I hope so…
When her parents’ financial problems threaten Ashley’s dreams for college, the high school whiz kid takes matters into her own hands. She and her girlfriends turn their babysitting business into a wildly successful escort service for dads. But in this small suburban community, nothing stays secret for long. Inspired by true stories.
Babysitter’s Black Book stars Spencer Locke (Detention), Perry Reeves (Entourage), Ryan McPartlin (Chuck), Lauren York (Iron Man 3), and Steffani Brass (Bundy) It’s directed by Lee Friedlander (House Husbands) and written by Richard Kletter (Cyber Seduction: His Secret Life) and Michele Samit (Uncaged Heart). That alone promises a crazy script, so here is hoping things go way over the top! My money is on a random babysitter ending up dead!
Babysitter’s Black Book premieres Saturday, February 21, on Lifetime!