WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
There is no better feeling than that occasional time when I go into a movie thinking that it’s going to be awful and I walk away from it being pleasantly surprised. I’d read a few things about Smiley, none of them particularly good, but I found myself loving this movie for all the reasons that the critics panned it. Granted, I think it’s the kind of movie that only a child of the 90s can truly appreciate – it has the same kind of feeling that I Know What You Did Last Summer, Urban Legend and Scream had. Since those were the movies of my era, I thought Smiley was awesome for being able to capture that feeling, although I suspect it may fall a little bit flat with the kids of today. I would thoroughly recommend you watch this both for the 90s slasher vibe and for the fact that the whole movie is an elaborate tapestry of interwoven awkward moments that somehow come together to form a cohesive film. So many awkward moments, so little time…
Ah, college life. The beginning of adulthood where those years of toil and slog in high school finally pay off and you can begin to pursue a path of education that will help you become a productive member of society. Yeah, that was Ashley’s plan until approximately 3 minutes after she met her new housemate, Proxy, and then the training wheels came off in a big way. Proxy’s going to a party that’s been completely organised online by anonymous strangers, and she wants Ashley to go along. Ashley’s never done a bad thing in her life, or heard of a computer by the sounds of things, but she’s willing to give anything that good old college try. Drinkin’ them drinks and smokin’ that wacky tobacky…
At the little gathering is a small group of hackers, hacktivists, active hackers, hackers in training and a mild sprinkling of hipster hackers. From this group Ashley seems to learn her first urban legend – the one about Smiley. Now, Smiley’s a man who sowed his eyes shut and carved a smile into his face so he looks like a rather macabre emoticon. The legend is very similar to Bloody Mary, except this one involves the internet. If you go onto a video chat with a stranger, imagine Smiley killing them and type in ‘I did it for the lulz’ three times, Smiley will actually appear and commit the crime. But that’s just urban legend, right? Nobody actually believes this stuff do they?
Running with that thought, Ashley and Proxy decide to test it out and see what happens. After trolling the internet for the most revolting individual they can find, they tease him for a bit and then type in the fated words. Suddenly, a wild Smiley appears, uses knife stab and it’s super effective. This is understandably a little frightening for the girls, but how exactly do they go about reporting it to the police? It all seems a little bit strange, and it certainly doesn’t help that Ashley has a history of mental disorders. The only thing to possibly remedy this situation is more partying! But soon Smiley starts to break the rules of the game – instead of just going after people he’s sent to, he starts coming for those that did the sending, and Ashley needs to decide whether it’s her mind playing tricks on her or if something more sinister is at work.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- 12-year-old girls really shouldn’t be on sites where men take their pants off.
- Broadband has now reached a point where serial killers can download themselves into your house.
- Entire research teams are now looking into the intersection of the strange and the retarded.
- There’s about a 50/50 chance of either God or the Chupacabra actually being real.
- At some point all the internet’s evil is going to coalesce and manifest itself as a disfigured serial killer.
- There’s nothing quite like a roofied walk under the stars.
- Filing cabinets in academic institutions are there solely for the purpose of storing various types of booze.
WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
When myself and Tropical Mary get together for a movie night you know we’re gonna go hard hard h-h-h-hard. Throw in a Stygian Mole and the party’s never gonna stop! Since we were in such a hardcore partying mood Rave to the Grave was just a logical choice for the evening’s first movie 😉 Admittedly I haven’t seen the other Return of the Living Dead movies for about 10 years so, if there was any link to the earlier movies floating around in here, I didn’t know about it. I doubt that this is important since this movie has enough of its own daft silliness to distract you. Prepare yourself for brain-hungry zombies, zombie juice, zombie drugs and Krispy Kreme obsessed Interpol agents!
It’s good to see that the black market is still alive and thriving, and now’s as good a time as any to invest in barrels of Trioxin 5. The particularly powerful toxic agent turns people into zombies hungry for brains and there are a number of (presumably) Russians who want to get their hands on it to make sure that no one else is accidentally turned into a member of the walking dead. Thankfully an Eric Roberts look-alike just happens to have a few in his possession and is happy to sell them off if the price is right. The Russians, of course, are a practical people and have acquired the use of a morgue to do a little test run to see if the Trioxin is the genuine product. Four corpses later it turns out that the Trioxin really does work and one of the Russians, the Eric Roberts look-alike and a doctor of questionable morals lands up being broken open for brain snacks.
But too many Russians can make a movie a bit too serious, so we need to take this in a different direction. Off at college Jenny, Julian, Cody and Becky are planning a little rave for Halloween. Julian’s the nephew of the Eric Roberts look-alike and suffers from 3 and a half minutes of intense grief when he finds out about his dear uncle’s untimely death. While raiding the attic at the uncle’s house he discovers a very poorly concealed room behind a very poorly constructed false wall. In the room he comes across the barrels of Trioxin and takes it to Cody to be tested. When our DJ of the Asian persuasion samples a little of the strange contents and goes on a little trip Cody decides to drain the barrel and turn it into a drug to make a little extra cash. This, despite the fact that they have no idea what’s in the barrel, the barrel is military issue, it has a biohazard sign on it and a digital lock. These can’t possibly be warning signs after all…
Admittedly the Trioxin tablets, known as ‘Z’ to the hip druggie kids on the street, do send people on quite a trip when taken in small doses. Unfortunately, in the long run, it has the unpleasant side effect of turning the user into a walking corpse with a taste for brains. The transformation happens faster when the dosage is increased. Since raves are not the drug-free and safe-sex haven that some of us believe them to be a rather sizeable portion of the assembled party goers begins to turn and start looking for their next batch of brain noms. Human skulls seem to be reasonably simple to open so the zombies just go nuts and, since its Halloween, everyone else just thinks it’s awesome makeup until it’s too late. It’ll take everything Julian, Jenny and two Interpol agents dressed as lady vikings have in them to bring this terrible outbreak to an end.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- Women are prone to driving their cars into their swimming pools.
- Drunk college kids are not overly different to lemmings running off a cliff.
- Fivety-five is now considered a legitimate number.
- If you can’t trust you’re drug dealer you can’t trust anyone.
- Dragons are getting tighter.
- Brains are now located in the penis.
- Pieces of skull and a clump of hair counts as zombie roughage.
- The brain and the ear have major arteries running through them.
- The human skull has a little trapdoor at the back for easy brain access.
RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD: RAVE TO THE GRAVE TRAILER
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WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
Oh dear, watching this back to back with Hookers in a Haunted House really wasn’t my best idea; between the two of them I’m not sure I have a sexual orientation anymore. With such high-profile stars as Jason Lockhart (of Aliens VS Avatars fame) and gay porn star Dylan Vox you can only begin to imagine the ride this movie’s 70 minutes are going to take you on. With all that said, provided you can withstand being constantly bombarded with naked torsos and the occasional penis, this movie is a great laugh; it’s so completely (and unintentionally) over the top you can’t help but roll your eyes and giggle at the sheer ludicracy of it all.
Caleb’s just your regular young gay man moving to California to get away from the close-mindedness that is the American midwest. Being a trusting young thing he’s moving in with Paul, another conveniently gay man who just happened to be looking for a roommate. Caleb’s eager to leave his tarnished past as an all-star swimming champion behind and dedicate himself solely to pursuing a degree and finding the ideal spot for drinking herbal teas for hours on end. Paul has other ideas, but a more immediate concern for Caleb is what the enigmatic Jasin has in store for him.
As a sign of the age we live in Jasin is considered an incredibly ancient vampire since he’s about to turn 100. Vampire law dictates that on his centenary Jasin needs to take a life mate, but finding this person is proving to be rather tricky. Up until this point Jasin and his flamboyant coven were convinced The One was Tara, a lovely, if somewhat desperate, young lady. This all changes when Caleb rocks up in town and Jasin starts to have visions (of a sexual nature) of him. Intrigued by this turn of events Jasin decides to court Caleb to see how open to being turned into a vampire he might be.
But of course since we’ve introduced all these other characters so we need to do something with them. Caleb becomes instantly smitten with Jasin, leaving poor Paul out in the cold. Not one to simply accept defeat Paul resorts to whining and well placed topless guitar playing in an attempt to seduce his would-be sweetheart. When this and more direct methods fail Caleb storms off and Jasin, sensing his boy toy is displeased, sends the shirtless coven to take care of business. One would hope that this would take care of the problem but soon there is dissension in the ranks. Fighting against gay vampire rights Logan, Jasin’s right-hand fang, insists that Tara should be chosen as The One. When Jasin refuses to listen Logan abducts Tara, hoping to draw Caleb out into the open so he can kill him. Can Jasin save Tara and keep the love of his life? Does Caleb love Jasin enough to be turned into a vampire? Will anyone ever come out fully clothed? You’ll have to watch to find out.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- Herbal teas are sometimes the best idea a person can ever have.
- Male vampires do enjoy a spot of synchronised sun tanning.
- Roommates should feel comfortable enough with one another to walk around virtually naked.
- Gay vampire seduction is infinitely more awkward than straight vampire seduction.
- Living in a more enlightened age means that vampires can now freely hunt members of either sex to bolster the coven’s numbers.
- Men just give in to their girlfriend’s requests to have a threesome under a sunflower bush.
- Gay vampires are incredibly worried about disappointing their mothers.
- All star swimming champions are worshipped as gods in the midwestern states.
- Herbal tea has a gargantuan calorie count.
- Stray bullets tend to put a dampener on an otherwise perfect afternoon.
- Vampires communicate with mortals through tongue-on-tongue action.
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WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
OK, I’m gonna put an idea out there and you can all tell me what you think. Four things made this movie standout when I first heard about it: 1) It’s made by the Asylum, 2) its leading ladies are Carmen Electra and 3) Brooke Hogan and, of course, 4) it’s about a giant 2-headed man-eating shark! Now, when one considers all these things, one might expect that this would be a belly full of laughs from beginning to end. One may just be disappointed. Perhaps it’s because I watched it back-to-back with Terror at Blood Fart Lake and nothing was going to compare with the awesome insanity of that movie but this little nautical nightmare just wasn’t as much fun as I was hoping for. Don’t get me wrong, it’s highly amusing to watch, but it just doesn’t have that b-grade x-factor that would let it go down in memory as a totally satisfying experience.
Now, if I understand this movie correctly (which is difficult since it all just seems so unlikely), Charlie O’Connell is a university professor taking his class out to sea to investigate something or other. What they’re investigating hardly seems important since they can’t even master the use of a compass, so we’re not really expecting them to turn out to be anything spectacular later on in life. He’s accompanied by his wife Carmen Electra, a brilliant doctor who’s dedicated her time to help any wary sailor out and cure whatever it is that may be ailing them. Everything’s going wonderfully until the boat manages to get a dead shark lodged in its propellers, bring the little exploratory expedition to an end. Thankfully there’s an atoll (which isn’t really an atoll) nearby where the group hopes they can salvage some materials to fix the boat.
The boat’s been a little bit more damaged than the group initially realises since the shark lodged in the propeller blades soon became a snack for the massive 2-headed mutant swimming around these waters. Being a rather messy and enthusiastic eater the 2-header smashed the boat’s hull and the ship’s starting to take on water and any of the crew members who try to fix it end up mysteriously eaten. Back on the atoll the students are doing there utmost best to be morons and go about being general asses and bitches. Some lesbian experimentation and threesome action comes to an abrupt halt when all concerned land up being eaten (although not in the way the one guy originally intended). Oh yeah, and the atoll’s sinking. The group’s gonna have to hustle themselves and fix the boat quickly before the land disappears from underneath them.
Thankfully Brooke Hogan’s here to save the day. Now, it’s not so much that she’s a genius as the rest of the group would lose a spelling bee to an amoeba but, in times of mutant shark attacks and atoll sinkings, one cannot afford to be picky. With her mannish good looks, straw-blonde hair and breasts that are forever threatening to fall out of her bikini, Brooke successfully manages to fix three separate boats AND figure out what’s drawing the sharks’ attention. It would appear that the creature’s two heads make it more sensitive to noise in the water, thus making it rather tricky to escape by boat. With land becoming an increasingly rare commodity and spare students that can be used as shark snacks running out Brooke and Co. will have to find a way of either teleporting off the island, sinking the main boat to send out a distress beacon or pull together a MacGyver-style plan to kill the 2-headed beast.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- It’s better to be safe than someone’s dinner.
- You have no chance of surviving at sea without a long, pointy stick.
- An all-over tan requires that a woman’s breasts be thrust forward at all times.
- Women are constantly on edge, just waiting for a man to dare them to strip naked.
- A woman only gets a limited number of chances to be a lesbian in her lifetime.
- Being eaten by a shark is not the ideal way to get a threesome going.
- Good quality lighters will continue to work even after being submerged for hours at a time.
- A small metal net and half a barrel of gas is all you need to electrocute the entire ocean.
2-HEADED SHARK ATTACK TRAILER
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1983 : Year of Release : 2009
Horror / Thriller : Genre : Horror / Thriller
5.7 / 10 : IMDB Rating : 5 / 10
Surprise! : Level of Awful : Low
Welcome to the B-Horror Blog’s first ever B-Horror Throwdown! The premise is simple: take a cheesy horror movie fitting of this site, find its remake and pit the two against one another. The rules are simple: the original movie is the benchmark that the remake is compared against – is it true to the original? Does it improve on the original? What new elements have been incorporated? Does the remake manage to raise the bar or dive into new depths of cheesy goodness? So many questions to answer and in the end only one can be the winner and the loser needs to have the crap beaten out of it. For the first Throwdown! I have chosen to pit The House on Sorority Row against Sorority Row. The reasoning behind this is that I’d seen the original about a year ago but hadn’t gotten around to watching the remake. This provides the perfect opportunity to judge the new movie against an original that I’ve already formed an opinion of. Plus I got the original in a 4-in-1 bargain pack and that means it automatically qualifies for a place on the B-Horror Blog 🙂
To begin with, these two movies have very little in common with one another other than the premise that they are built on. In House Mrs Slater, the housemother of the Pi Theta sorority, is a bitch that the girls in the house detest. They become particularly pissed off when she forbids them from having a final party for their graduation and decide that they should pull a good old-fashioned sorority prank on her. This prank involves taking her walking stick and leaving it in the middle of the swamp-like swimming pool and holding a gun to her and making her dive in. Lead bitch Vicki (Eileen Davidson of later Days of our Lives fame), however, decides that it will be even more fun if they load the gun and fire some shots off for extra effect. Since one of the great rules of horror is that things like this should never go according to plan one of the bullets lands up hitting Mrs Slater and killing her. The girls decide that they should dispose of the body so that the four years of college education they’ve just completed doesn’t go to waste. This said and done and their party well under way the girls are stalked by a killer intent on taking out those people who killed Mrs Slater (or did they?).
Sorority Row follows its predecessor in that it’s also based around the prank-gone-wrong scenario. This time the girls of Theta Pi sorority (it’s not the same movie if you switch the Greek letters around) are planning on getting even: Megan, one of the sisters, has been cheated on by her boyfriend Garrett. Since being in a sorority apparently means that anything and everything should be done to uphold sisterly honour (I’m not familiar with the Greek system so I’m really just running with it here) the other sisters Jessica (lead bitch), Cassidy (loyal and brave), Chugs (slutty drunk and Garrett’s sister), Claire (shy wannabe of the Asian persuasion) and Ellie (shy redhead) pretend to give Garrett pills to drug Megan to ‘get her in the mood’ (<- Right there! See it? Just set the women’s movement back by at least 20 years!). When Megan begins throwing up everywhere (part of the plan) the girls and Garrett drive out to an old abandoned mine where they pretend that they need to dispose of the body by cutting it up. For fun this is all being recorded on a cellphone. Jessica tells everyone to go and find sharp stones to cut the body up (part of the plan) but Garrett, understandably freaked out, takes a tire iron and punctures Megan’s lung so that her body won’t float in the lake (NOT part of the plan). They then need to actually dispose of the body by throwing it down the abandoned mine’s shaft. 8 months later as the sisters prepare to graduate a killer stalks Theta Pi’s final party killing off the girls and miscellaneous others. Like the girls from House, did Jen & Co. actual kill Megan?
So what are we left with? The House on Sorority Row, much to my surprise, is actually a good movie so long as you can see past the 80s-ness of it. It’s a different take on the slasher genre and it plays out well with all of the girls playing their parts well. And it has clowns – anything with clowns is scary. Sorority Row also isn’t a bad movie, but unfortunately it’s no where near as good as the first one. Ironically it’s the fact that it’s meant to be a ‘re-imagining’ of House that’s its primary problem: had it been given a different name and not leaned on the original it would have been a fairly decent watch. I liked seeing Princess Leah as the housemother Mrs Crenshaw and I liked that the characters were meant to be somewhat related to the characters in the original. I thought that the way they incorporated Mrs Slater’s walking stick in one of the scenes was very well done. I certainly didn’t like Rumer Willis in the role whiny, irritating, crying-every-three-seconds Ellie and the twist to find out who the killer is left me cold. While Sorority Row had some fantastic kills and it certainly brought up the sleaze level to a point an 80s movie just couldn’t aim for I still feel as though it leaves you wanting a little more.
The rules of Throwdown! state that a winner needs to be picked and the loser have the crap beaten out of it. While House on Sorority Row was fun and original, Sorority Row wasn’t unique enough to be a movie in its own right and not close enough to the original to be a decent remake. House on Sorority Row wins this round!
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- You can perform a Caesarean section with nothing but a surgical knife and a candle.
- Contrary to modern times it was considered the norm in the 80s for men to wear micro shorts and for women to wear manly shirts.
- 80s sex involved a lot of groaning with very little movement.
- Two towels are heavy enough to sink a human corpse.
- In case of emergency reach for the knife in the doll’s head.
- A willingness to dispose of your friend’s body shows how much you love your family.
- Being a member of a sorority is similar to making a blood oath with the devil.
- Murdering is a wonderful couple’s activity.
- On a psycho scale 50 crazy bitches is the rough equivalent of one serial killer.
THE HOUSE ON SORORITY ROW TRAILER
SORORITY ROW TRAILER