Sunday, March 6, 2016

Three Films Make A Post: SURGING SPECTACLE! ...of Savagery and Sex!

Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II (1987): On one hand, I’m perfectly fine with Bruce Pittman’s sequel to okay Canadian slasher Prom Night having nothing whatsoever to do with the first one – where the hell should it have gone from there, after all – on the other hand, the resulting mix of possession horror and Freddy Krueger style (at times barely one step ahead of ripping off whole scenes completely) supernatural slasher never gels into an actual movie. Instead, we get a bunch of unfulfilled promises (you could make a perfectly great film about guilt and punishment as spiced up by religion out of the material), some good scenery-chewing by Michael Ironside and Wendy Lyon once she’s possessed, and the usual bunch of murder scenes that have not much of a thematic connection (would it really kill this sort of film to have a killer with a theme and then go through with it instead of having people randomly explode through their computer and other random crap?), and barely cohere into something like an actual plot.

Starship Troopers 3: Marauders (2008): The second Star Ship Troopers sequel, this time around directed by series screenwriter Edward Neumeier, is a pretty tedious way for the series to go out. It clearly wants to connect the satirical aspirations of the first film with the B-movie thrills of the second one, but it’s even less successful with the former than the original film and sabotages the latter ambition by insisting on the former. It’s also godawfully paced, spending an astounding amount of time on things with no bearing on its actual narrative whatsoever. The whole first hour is paced and feels very much like the prologue to the actual film; the rest isn’t nearly exciting enough to make up for that failing.

Dance of the Damned (1989): Katt Shea’s late eighties neon indie vampire movie is a bit of a frustrating experience. There’s a lot of interesting stuff in this attempt to use an awkward date night (at least he seems to think it’s a date despite his early announcement to kill her at exactly 6am) between a vampire (Cyril O’Reilly) and a stripper (Starr Andreeff) to talk about broken lives but for every moment that’s emotionally resonant, for every good idea, there are two moments of 80s vampire movie pompousness, lines of dialogue that are trying oh so very hard but never achieving, and some horribly ill-advised contact lenses. Worse, what for large parts of its running time amounts to a two person play only has one good performance in Andreeff’s (who going by what she’s doing here would have deserved to go on to much better things than she actually did), with O’Reilly mostly letting his luscious 80s locks, those contact lenses and not a lot more doing his work, which just isn’t enough.

This is still a very interesting film, mind you, just not one that actually succeeds at what

No comments: