Thursday, October 1, 2015



Tray Loren, Donna Scoggins, Cana Cockrell, Nigel Benjamin, and Every painters’ hat-wearing metal-smoking cheeseball you avoided in high school.

Also, it’s apparently directed by “The Benjamin’s”. 

Watch the trailer here.  

Watch the entire movie for free here.


Rocktober Blood is the hottest rock ‘n roll sensation since Sad Iron and lead singer Billy Eye (Loren) is going to shriek his angst-fueled tunes until your great grandma spontaneously gives birth.   
Lynn Starling (Scoggins) is the band’s scorching back-up singer who worships cocky horndog Billy but yearns for the spotlight.  But Billy has nothing but contempt for the ambitious songbird.

"Eyes to see you."
So after a late-night recording session, Billy suddenly goes ape shit and starts offing members of the band and members of the creative force that spawned it.  Like these guys.

Looks like the mean pinball played him.
Iron Maiden, literally.
We are told that Billy was killed after massacring 25 folks which conveniently happened off-screen.  No one knows what set precipitated his blood-soaked rampage.  Perhaps he actually heard his own music? 

Two years later, Lynn is the lead singer of her own band having gained infamy as the sole survivor of Billy's implied murderous madness.  Despite her rising stardom, she is still tormented by bad memories and trauma.  She begins to hallucinate Billy's return at a concert which is highlighted by a hopping goof in a ghoul mask.

Nothing's more metal than a break-dancing dork in a Parties 'R Us mask.
After being chased around by said ghoul, Lynn retreats to her home in the country where she does continues to be followed, harassed, and prank-called by someone claiming to be Billy.  She can't even do aerobics in peace!

"The call is coming from inside your leg warmers!"
Shit gets real when her super-fit friends start dying one-by-one in her tastefully decorated spa.

Despite the bloodshed, no one believes Lynn and eventually she's talked back into going through with her concert tour.  Just before the show, she's kidnapped by Billy who takes the stage and begins his own very farewell show by stabbing on-stage dancers and shaking his hips while poorly choreographed metal capering ensues.

"Nigel Tufnel's gonna be so jealous!"
Lynn struggles to fight back against Billy while belting out her screechy tunes while groupies and bass players lie impaled around her.  And as the battle ensues onstage for all the world to see, we finally discover the secret of Billy Eyes' seeming resurrection, a syndrome that plagued every narrative form in the 80s: 

 The Evil Twin.


Rocktober Blood is a fairly heinous assault on your 80s slasher senses, and I don't mean in a heinous-is-good kind of way.  One of several metal maniac horror flicks that (probably) tried to profit off the heavy metal/Satanism paranoia of the time, the movie aims for somewhere between the Slipknot/GWAR grotesqueness of Neon Maniacs and the very watchable antics of Gene Simmons and Ozzy Osbourne in Trick Or Treat.  Instead, this very low budget and poorly lit flick struggles to stay within the company of the fascinatingly weird oeuvre of Jon Mikl Thor and the putrid no-budget wallowing of Hard Rock Zombies.  Lead Tray Loren as the immensely punchable Billy Eyes succeeds in douchey exaltation as the other mumbling actors try their best to remember they're still in a movie.  Basically, it's as if someone was stalking the cast of Heavy Metal Parking Lot.  The music is somewhat infectious and not completely horrible, especially Lynn's signature tune "Rainbow Eyes".  But it's been like 20 minutes since I finished the movie and that earworm appears to have dried up.  Unfortunately, the heavy metal massacre genre also appears to have dissipated, much like studded leather pants swaying on a clothesline in the heavy metal rest home of our bad movie memory.

Sunday, December 15, 2013


As my X-mas gift to you, I will unravel the true story behind the making of what could have been the greatest holiday picture of all time: Frank Capra’s IT’S A TREMENDOUS LIFE. So sit back, pour yourself a hot cup of cocoa, and follow the tragic tale that hindered my early career in Hollywood.

Brooklyn, 1945.  I was defending my the World Tag Team Championship with my partner Angel Perdido against the hefty Germanic tough man Gunter Gallahad and the foppish Gentleman Monty Armbruster.  Unbeknownst to me, Capra was in attendance scouting my every move for a possible picture. At the time, I had been in negotiations with other directors such as Orson Welles, John Ford, and toddler Martin Scorcese. But I was holding out for the right script.

And the right script turned out to be one Capra has just completed set during X-mas in upstate New York. And nothing screams rural upstate New York than burly Mexicans and wrestling.  Right? 

After the match, Capra met me backstage and showed me this synopsis:

"George Hailey has spent his entire life in Deadford Springs where he has sacrificed a career of travel and study to help taxi drivers, floozies and Italians buy affordable homes. Dragged down by his selfish family, including a senile syphilitic uncle, a mouth-kissing marriage-obsessed mother, and a skirt-chasing Army-guy-saving jerk brother, he becomes trapped in an uneventful small town life.

The remains of pure f*cking brilliance.
Constantly in conflict with the Scrooge-like bowling alley baron Mister Pooter, George is unable to prevent the rich old kingpin from taking over the entire town. All that he has is a moldy old building and loan company, which was founded by his dopey stroke-prone father (deceased).

George eventually marries a pretty hot lady named Mary who turns out to be a baby factory and saddles poor ol' George with five rugrats (including one dangerously obsessed with flowers), a drafty old house, and an ass-load of a mortgage. Also there's this guy who torments him with donkey impressions. 

Blink and you'll miss me in SANTA CLAUS CONQUERS THE MARTIANS.
One Christmas Eve, George's Uncle Willy drops the company's total assets down a street gutter while on his way to spend it on hookers and lollipops. Pooter retrieves the money and hides it from the Haileys hoping to put them out of business.  George realizes that he will be held responsible, be sent to jail, and lose the business. But at least he'd be away from those caroling posey-sniffing brats. In a whiskey-drenched moment of realization he believes luscious Mary will be better off without him and he contemplates suicide.

George wanders to a nearby bridge and prepares to jump. But the prayers of his loved ones result in the appearance of angel El Tremendo who has been sent help George. Unable to convince George that pills is a quicker alternative to drowning, Tremendo tries a different tactic. He shows George what things would have been like if he had never been born.

In a well-shot, widescreen vision in which the Pooter-controlled town has efficient trains, milk fountains, and lots of Dunkin Donuts, George discovers that his family and friends are pretty much the same, only with sturdier bones and protruding guts. But George ultimately decides suicide is not the answer when he finds Mister Pooter nailing Mary harder than an Amish barn. 

In the end, El Tremendo transports George to a mystical wrestling ring, trains him in the ways of lucha libre complete with Frank Stallone soundtrack, and returns him to Deadford Falls where he chokes out Mister Pooter, gets the money back, and makes baby #6.”

I was sold. Capra got Jimmy Stewart to play George, but only one scene was shot: the first meeting between El Tremendo and George after his rescue where I try to convince him I'm a otherworldly messenger of a God who still thinks wrestling is real. The next day I was informed that I was out of the picture. They dumped me, re-titled it, hired another guy as the angel, and completely perverted Capra’s initial vision into some nonsense about a spiritual journey to discover the value of familiar love, mapping your own destiny, and the joy of giving to others blah blah blah.

Luckily, the reworked IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE wasn't a big hit and no one has ever heard or seen it multiple times over and over again every frickin' year since. But at least...

... I'll always have my MEAN GIRLS cameo.

Friday, October 18, 2013



Mitchell Anderson, Juliette Cummins, Xander Berkeley, Thom Babbes, and a bucket of deer face. 

Please Note: It’s not a dream!  It’s not a dream!  It’s SPOILERS!


X-mas Eve, a while back.  In the home of a the wealthy Torme family, young Alex waits for Santa and begs to open his presents as his parents hem and haw over the youngster’s enthusiasm.  But ungodly terror disrupts the holiday fun when a killer in a deer mask breaks into the house and shotguns Mom and Dad.

Rudolph had a very shiny nose...of vengeance.
The boy survives the ordeal and years later, he grows up to be college student Alex (Anderson).  We learn that the killer was a rival of his father who bankrupted his business. Alex still struggles with the memories of that tragic night while pursuing a career as a writer.

They nailed it.
But Alex has to deal with pressure from his older brother Jack (Berkeley) to join the family business while he's tormented nightly by dreams where the deer-masked killer hunts him down and …

Shoots ol' Jack,
Slices his throat,
And, um, other things.
Meanwhile, Alex’s jokester pal Danny (Babbes) fun-lovingly pokes fun at his friend’s tragic past.

Not cool, bro.
Fortunately, a diversion from bad dreams, tortured prose, and shitty friends arrives in the form of Maggie (Cummins), a cute dancer with a dream and a smile who unfortunately has lousy gift-giving skills.

"Um, thanks?"
Things get complicated when Jack accuses Maggie of being a gold-digger and Danny is suspected of secretly drugging Alex to alleviate his nightmares.  All of this creates a rift between the four that intensifies Alex’s psychosis further when he starts to see the killer in real life.

Louis C.K. was right.
But there’s something more sinister at work within the illusions of Alex’s dreams.  Something dirty and nasty and deceitful.  And it’s up to Alex to escape this wide awake nightmare and solve the riddle and learn the true identity of the deer-face killer.

Oh, and get the laundry done.


Deadly Dreams is a nifty thrifty little thriller, an unexpected surprise found in a box of VHS cheapies. Based on the box cover and the title, you would expect the movie to be a Nightmare on Elm Street inspired flick like Bad Dreams, Sleepstalker, Shocker, and Candyman which – don’t panic – all vary in quality from bad to good to great. But this movie is decidedly not another quippy Freddy Krueger exercise.  Despite a TV-movie feel and lead Anderson as the oft-screechy protagonist, the cast delivers solid performances especially the stalwart and always reliable Xander Berkeley (24, Terminator 2, and the classic Magma: Volcanic Disaster) who is as scummy and delightfully repellent as always.  They are all amiably directed and keep a thin plotline afloat until the very end.  Speaking of the end, it’s revealed that Jack was behind Alex’s torment in order to get to his inheritance which is really messed up, that is until the REALLY messed up surprise ending added a twist to the relative torturing another for money routine.  Deadly Dreams is a neat little psychological puzzler that wisely side-steps slasher conventions, delivers some genuine scares, and wraps everything up under ninety minutes.

If you’re doing a Halloween marathon, I’d schedule Deadly Dreams early because it’s engaging enough to hold your attendees’ attention and it’s short enough to allow you sneak away and trick-or-treat, snatch candy bags, or get murdered by a disgruntled employee.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013



Scott Kubay, Sean Kanan, Donna Baltron, Scott Fults, Ria Pavia, Bunky Jones, Brittain Frey, Judy Ramteize, and Mikey the Misleading MacGuffin.

Please Note: Not Olly-Olly-Oxen-Spoiler-Free!


Summer, 1988. A masked killer stalks the streets in search of easy prey.

Also, the latest G.I. Joes.
Meanwhile, high school is over. A group of bored white teens in Reagan’s America want to go nuts, have some fun, and cut-loose-footloose or whatever the hell kids did back then. The gals prepare for their big night out by hanging out in my sister’s room.

"And he wears that mask, like, everywhere! GRODY!!!"
While the guys engage in gleeful homoerotic shenanigans. 

"One day, our kids will call this bro-something!"
So the gang plans a night out of raising Hell, adult beverages consumption, and the losing of their virginity and virdignity in a dark and depressing furniture warehouse.

Meanwhile, a creepy loading dock worker who the owner allows to sleep in the warehouse gradually becomes aware of the horny devilishness and randy goings-on happening elsewhere in the building.  

"But first, I gotta work out my stranglin' hand."
So the teens decide to up the ante on the evening’s tomfoolery and start a game of hide and seek in the warehouse that’s filled with the eeriest mannequins this side of Kim Cattrall.

Unfortunately, this is not the only wooden performance in this movie. Thank you! Thank you!
And soon the maniac who lurks in the shadows hunts the coitus-engaged teens and picks them off by various means such as:

Bathroom sink drowning.
Elevator decapitation.
And staring directly into this guy's chest. (Thank you.)
As an added bonus, the killer likes to dress up like his victims post-kill. 

"I just murdered Tim Curry!"
In the end, the surviving members of the humpy-pumpy massacre discover the haunting link between who they thought was the killer (creepy warehouse guy) and the real killer.  And it’s perhaps one of the most unsettling but remarkable resolutions of any 80s slasher I have ever seen (except for Sleepaway Camp). Yeah.

"Really? That's the ending? GHAACCK!"

Sure you can call Hide and Go Shriek just another cookie-cutter 80s slasher movie, yet another clone of other successful slashers like the seminal Halloween and Friday the 13th series with hypersexual teens and a generic psycho devoid of believable murderous ambition. Sure, go ahead. I dares ya!  But this bare bones basic and abjectly low budget movie somehow manages to be entertaining and – dare I say it – rise above its fundamental horror movie formula. First of all, the performances are worthy of note. The kids physically and verbally interact with one another naturally and with ease, almost as if they were real life friends who were oblivious to the rolling camera. This is highly unusual for a subgenre that emphasizes gore and cheap thrills over actual character development. They engage in authentic-sounding conversations with each other and not all of them end up in the sack. For example, the requisite “annoying joker” character drops his a-hole shtick when alone with his girlfriend and actually ends up respecting his her desire to hold off on sex. Yeah, it was weird, but unexpectedly appreciated. Don't get me wrong; the movie's got plenty of boobies. Plenty, my friend. Unfortunately, all this character progression is canceled out by the cringe-inducing killer plot resolution. As you may have guessed above, the loading dock creep (an ex-convict) is a red herring. The killer is revealed to be his former “prison bitch” who is still love with him and is slaughtering people to protect their life together, which in addition to making no friggin’ sense, is ridiculously and grossly homophobic. I can only surmise that the filmmakers were aiming at either "honest" or comedic commentary on relationships but the result is instead pretty gross. The producers also had the cajones to set up a sequel with the killer surviving his brutal demise. Fortunately, Hide and Go Shriek II: The Faggening did not happen.  


Sorry, but I cannot recommend Hide and Go Shriek for a horror movie marathon unless you have folks over who are interested in watching a historical example of pop culture homophobia that falsely purported the belief that them gays are coming to slay our virgins.  (Tea Partiers: please read the opposite of the preceding sentence).