Howling II: Stirba – Werewolf Bitch (1985)

Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf is as ridiculous as it sounds, but not half as bad as people tend to make out.

Okay, it is wholly ridiculous: a heady blend of MTV pop music videos, New Wave eroticism and classic Hammer Horror, but unlike hundreds of other efforts floating around in the ‘bad movie’ afterlife, you’ll be hard pressed to call it boring. In fact, it is positively spellbinding in its presentation, a movie with eschews logicality in favour of a visceral experience of shallow exhibitionism…

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Revisiting . . . Fargo (1996)

In many ways Fargo is the star of Fargo.

So detached from the savagery of modern life are its people that their salt-of-the-earth simplicity comes across as quite bizarre, and when contrasted with the stark and often brutal violence of the movie’s outsiders, we are plunged into an odyssey that is at once perverse and comical, exactly the kind of prodigious juxtapose that has made the Coen brothers so uniquely prominent as both writers and directors…

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Video Nasties # 1: Absurd (1981)

Back in the early 1980’s, the UK press had a field day damning the content of video cassette tapes dubbed ‘Video Nasties’. These releases went under the radar of the British Board of Film Classification due to a loophole in distributing laws, and many decried their explicit content, relating them to various real-life crimes and claiming that their influence was responsible for warping the minds of the youth of society…

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Soldier Boyz (1995)

When it comes to plot lines, you would be hard pressed to find one as improbable as that featured in Soldier Boyz.

Not only are the film’s events about as detached from reality as The Naked Gun, its characters are just as trite and predictable, so hammy that you sometimes forget this is an action movie and not a straight up spoof. Even more amazing is the fact that Louis Morneau’s slice of puerile patriotism harbours delusions of social commentary, masquerading as a cultural melting pot as America’s gangland minorities team up to take on an even more foreign, and therefore evil race of people…

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Maniac Cop (1988)

When we talk about cinema’s most underrated monsters, Matt Cordell should be somewhere near the top the list.

Widely known as Maniac Cop, Robert Z’Dar’s Cordell is a brute of a killer, a zombified variation of Friday the 13th’s Jason Voorhees, with the same superhuman strength and nondiscriminatory appetite for murder. Directed by exploitation junkie William Lustig (Maniac) and written by none other than the sharply satirical Roger Corman (The Stuff), the movie would prove a financial failure at a time when slasher movies had become largely generic and commercially passé…

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Revisiting . . . The Dead Zone (1983)

As a movie, The Dead Zone is not without its flaws, but it proves extremely relevant in regards to today’s political climate.

Although not as high profile as many other Stephen King adaptions, it is one of most loyal in terms of how it translates to the screen, and is certainly one of the most underappreciated, in spite of its often clunky pacing and superfluous content. The movie is directed by none other than David Cronenberg, a man who has long since reached a mainstream audience, although even his more high-profile pictures could never really be classed as conventional…

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American Ninja 2: The Confrontation (1987)

The American Ninja franchise is a true product of the VHS era.

Much like the No Retreat No Surrender series, they are movies of low production value which only seem to decrease in quality, but there is something about them that keeps us coming back for more. Production company The Cannon Group would exploit America’s fascination with martial arts to devastating financial effect. This had very little to do with the quality of action on show or the actors involved, owing much to the nationalistic stance of the latter stages of the Cold War as an inherently fascist cinema exploded in a barrage of invincible protagonists and patriotic exposition…

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