Cabin Fever: Patient Zero

ALRIGHT LOOK I AM SORRY, it’s been a month or so since I last wrote about a shitty horror movie that none of you people should watch, and for that you have one man to blame: Jimmy Buffett.

I have been working on one Mr. James William Buffett’s new musical, Escape to Margaritaville, for the last forever and his demands on me and my fellow theater technicians has been near infinite, so if anyone would like to file a complaint, I’m sure you can find J Buff in Florida lounging on a pile of cash and sipping a pint of tequila with an umbrella in it. He won’t give a shit, but maybe he’ll share his weed with you. On the bright side, he did put zombies in the show just for me, so I have spent the last couple of months slaving over the undead FOR WHICH YOU SHOULD ALL BE GRATEFUL. (PS, go see the show, it pays my salary sort of, also zombies.)

Anyway, now to the very first of the C List, the whopping THIRD letter in the alphabet that I have binge watched my way to – Cabin Fever: Patient Zero.

NOPE, not Cabin Fever, that was a Good Movie directed by Eli Roth. None of that here. This is Cabin Fever 3, the third best of the three Cabin Fever films, or, alternatively, the first worst. Cabin Fever: Patient Zero is the following:

  1. Not directed by Eli Roth.
  2. Not featuring compelling plot or characters.
  3. Not super memorable.

I do remember the premise, which is actually not a bad idea – a prequel to the franchise, Patient Zero tracks the virus back to the island from which it originated and tells the story of how the disease got loose in the first place. Dr. Mad Scientist is on an island in the Dominican Republic trying to find a cure for that pesky flesh-eating virus by poking at Sean Astin, who is somehow immune to its effects. I also remember that, at this time, a bachelor party lands on the island to have FUN BACHELOR PARTY TIMES, and predictably they are a bunch of shirtless college-aged dudes with one token hot chick who was invited because she’s ONE OF THE GUYS, which I suppose means “is a female who likes beer and doesn’t mind sexist jokes.” Is it even a horror movie if there’s no tits? I don’t think so. Film students, get at me – it’s not, right?

I also remember that FUN BACHELOR PARTY TIMES are sadly interrupted by Bummer Flesh-Eating Virus Times when two of the Hot People accidentally swim into a pile of fish guts and develop a gross bleedy rash that spreads like a virus, because it is a virus. They all try to find a doctor on the island, and of course Dr. Mad Scientist is the only one, and of course he is preoccupied because his pet virus has escaped and his pet Sean Astin isn’t cooperating and everyone at the lab is falling apart into a pile of flesh chunks.

Which leads us to the best part of this movie – the flesh chunks. Not kidding. The makeup in this film is GUH. RATE. And there is plenty of it. The best parts of the movie are when most of the cast is covered in little nomnoming viruses until their skin starts disappearing and everyone is all bloody and gross and STILL arguing about dumb 20-something white person problems. If you ignore most of the writing, acting, and cinematography, it’s a perfectly enjoyable special effects reel of How To De-Flesh Attractive People While They Fight, which, let’s be real, is at least 70% of the horror film industry, so we might as well recognize when they do a good job of it.

And that’s sort of it. Patient Zero is fairly predictable and feels like a SyFy Original (I’m looking at you, Asylum) and nothing particularly exciting or worth spending a couple hours on, but it also doesn’t claim to be life-changing or noteworthy, just fun and bloody. Not as fun as Cabin Fever, but just as bloody. And really, when you’re drinking a pint of tequila with an umbrella in it, as James B suggests, who gives a shit. Get your friends and your pint glasses and your tiny umbrellas and your cheeseburgers in paradise and enjoy the flesh chunks.

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And here is where I will remind everyone not to google image search “flesh chunks” even if you thought it would be super funny because there HAS to be a shitty death metal band with that name, which is what I did because I am a dumb dumb sweet baby angel who has never been on the internet.
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Cabin Fever: Patient Zero

Burke and Hare

HERE WE ARE.

Finally, I bring you the most amazing horror movie to ever come out of goofy, sexploity 1971 AND it is the last of the Bs! That’s right, after months of Bads and Blacks and Bloods and Brains and Belphagors, we are finally at the last B horror movie in the Netflix horror section (and yet we have only begun with actual b-horror-movies god all -fuckin-mighty Netflix with your film selection).

How do you all feel? Accomplished? You’ve come so far. I’m very proud. Thanks for tuning in once every couple of months when I remember I sometimes have a blorg. I know you’re all very proud of me as well. I am too. I think I’ve earned it.

AND NOW GET READY FOR ONE OF MY VERY VERY FAVORITES.

First of all, this isn’t the Burke and Hare movie from 2010. This isn’t the Burke and Hare movie from the 90s. No no no. This is much much better. This is motherfucking NINETEEN SEVENTY-ONE. This is a Burke and Hare story with FALSE EYELASHES and BIG SIDEBURNS and SO MANY BOOBIES. LONG HAIR AND BIG LAPELS AND CHEESY MUSIC AND SERIOUSLY SO MANY BOOBIES AND ALSO BUTTS. (Goddamn, the 1970s must have been fucking spectacular.)

If you’re not familiar, Burke and Hare were actual real live serial killers in Edinburgh in the 1830s. At that time, cutting up a body for science was seen as the worst possible thing to happen to your discarded flesh tube after death, so medical students were only permitted to use the corpses of executed convicts to learn about anatomy and surgery, as we had not yet figured out what science was and so we were already prepared to just shit all over it with religious regulations BUT NOT ANYMORE HAHAHAHAHAHA. So of course skeletons and corpses became extremely valuable and, because humans are awful and 1827 UK was the fucking worst, William Burke and William Hare (I know, how are these called “the Burke and Hare Murders” and not “Double William Death Squad,” fucking tell me about it) went into the lucrative murdering-people-and-selling-them-to-medical-school business.

Which brings us to this delightful, boob-filled romp through 19th century serial murder.

William Hare ran a shitty boarding house for shitty people, and William Burke lived there. In their spare time they dug up reasonably fresh corpses to sell to medical schools, which was about as happy and prosperous a life as one could have in 1827 Edinburgh.

One day, one of the other shitty residents of the shitty boarding house keels over and our Williams, seeing oldy timey dollar signs, decide to bury a fake body and sell the real one to a local surgeon, who didn’t ask too many questions because if you wanted to teach medicine in 1827 you had to turn a blind eye to black market cadavers because WHAT IN THE SHIT 1827 YOU HAD TO HAVE KNOWN WHERE THIS WOULD END UP. Great job, 1827. We got stuck with H.H. Holmes because of your shit. Way to go.

Realizing how much could be made by having anonymous people “accidentally” die at your boarding house, both Williams decide to go into business together. CORPSE BUSINESS. (1980s, please come back and produce a Magnum PI-style show called Corpse Business. I want lots of guns and lots of skeletons in giant shoulder-padded jackets. Please and thank you.) Burke and Hare Incorpseporated goes actually pretty well for a while until they accidentally pick the wrong lady to smother to death and all hell breaks loose.

But wait. Before ANY of this, before the movie even begins, we have the single greatest intro theme song of all time. I’m not going to attempt to describe it, I’m just going to link it here and allow all of you to bask in its glory: WATCH IT HERE WATCH IT NOW.

And let me tell you, the whole fucking movie is like that. It’s silly and anachronistic and could not be less serious about its subject matter. Eventually William^2 start bringing home prostitutes and killing them for their cadavers and we get ENTHUSIASTIC 70S SEX FROLICKING BEFORE MURDER. IT’S THE GODDAMN FUCKING BEST.

This movie makes me inordinately happy and I can barely make myself summarize it much more because my hope truly is that you all watch that intro and immediately go seek out the full movie and stick it directly into your eyeballs and hearts. Burke and Hare is one of the few bright spots in this whole stupid alphabetized project I have forced myself into and I am literally going to stop writing this blog and go watch it again right…….

(FIVE FUCKING HORRORS YOU GUYS FUCK IT’S THE BEST)

………NOW.

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A shot from the movie, and also my face the entire time I was watching it. LOOK HOW HAPPY THEY ARE TO BE A PART OF THIS MASTERPIECE.

 

 

Burke and Hare

Borderline Cult

HURRAY NOVEMBER IS OVER I DID IT.

Okay, so I didn’t quite do all 31 Days Of Horror, because November is only 30 days and I started on the 3rd and then I took several days off because ughhhh writing words is JUST SO HARD but whatever. I probably did like 20 maybe. Maybe 15. I for sure did at least ten. Probably. (I could count but ughhhhhh counting things is JUST SO HARD.)

So from now on I will be posting at least once a week on Sunday, THE LORD’S DAY, and I promise to actually keep up with this thing because holy shit I don’t want to be still working through the letter J when I’m 45 and Netflix owns the entire internet.

And now for today’s movie: Borderline Cult.

And HOOOOOOOOOOLY SHIT it’s the worst.

I’m going to admit something to you. I did not watch the entirety of this movie.

That’s how bad it is.

I watched all of 100 Ghost Street: The Return of Richard Speck. I watched every fucking minute of The Amityville Haunting. I did everything short of build a Clockwork Orange-style eyelid opener to keep watching The fucking Bell Witch Haunting.

But I could not make it through this.

Borderline Cult is about three serial killers torturing and killing women at the US/Mexico border. That is all. That is the whole thing. And it literally looks like it was shot on a cell phone camera. It’s a blurry mess with zero sound or lighting equipment and is entirely done with some sort of washed out grainy filter that I think was intended to hide the fact that this was filmed in someone’s backyard with Halloween store plastic knives and wigs. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that every costume, set piece, and prop was purchased at Spirit Halloween.

Fuck man.

It’s just the fucking worst.

I’ve only given up on watching a movie in this project one other time and I feel like this one is somehow WORSE than that. The other movie I couldn’t force myself to waste my life with was Baseline Killer, directed by Ulli Lommel, and

wait.

Ulli Lommel is the director of Borderline Cult.

…….

FUCKING. MONSTER.

THE MINUTES OF MY LIFE THIS MAN HAS TAKEN FROM ME, NEVER TO BE RETURNED. FUCK THIS DUDE. WHAT IS THE FUCKING MATTER WITH YOU, LOMMEL??? WHY DO YOU KEEP DOING THIS??? IS IT THE MONEY??? IS IT WORTH IT TO YOU TO SPEND TWELVE DOLLARS MAKING A MOVIE THAT GROSSES FIFTEEN???

FUCK YOU.

FUCK YOU AND YOUR WASHED OUT SNAPCHAT FILTER YOU FUCKING USE ON EVERYTHING.

FUCK YOU AND YOUR SINGLE PLASTIC BLONDE HALLOWEEN WIG THAT YOU APPARENTLY STORE IN A BOX OF RATS.

FUCK YOU FOR MAKING A BOX OF RATS DEAL WITH YOUR SHIT – THEY GODDAMN DESERVE BETTER.

…….NO HORRORS.

NO HORRORS FOR YOU.

THE ONLY HORROR IS THAT NETFLIX SPENT THAT $15 BUYING YOUR SHIT ASS MOVIE AND THAT I SPENT HALF AN HOUR OF MY LIFE TRYING TO WATCH IT WITHOUT REMOVING MY EYES WITH MY COMPUTER MOUSE. THE HORROR IS THAT SOME POOR L.A. WAITRESS HAS THIS PIECE OF SHIT ON HER IMDB PAGE. THE HORROR IS THAT HOLY TITS YOU HAVE SIXTY ONE FUCKING DIRECTING CREDITS.

FUCK.

JESUS.

I’ll be back next week hopefully with a movie that DIDN’T ALMOST FUCKING KILL ME AND MY CAPS LOCK BUTTON.

UGH.

THIS GUY.

FUCK.

ulli-lommel-01
FUCK. 
Borderline Cult

Bloody April Fools

Sigh.

I actually missed this one the first time I went through the B section and upon noticing that I’d skipped it somehow I went back and watched it because goddammit I was going to watch ALL the movies in alphabetical order mostly.

I regret this decision.

Bloody April Fools is a Spanish teen slasher flick, and it turns out that Spanish teen slasher flicks are exactly as awful as American teen slasher flicks. It opens, like they all do, to a flashback of a teenaged outcast being killed as the result of a prank. What prank, you ask? The one where you lock a dude in the boiler room of the girl’s shower and watch as his face melts onto a burning pipe. This has two advantages:

  1. So so so many titties.
  2. That’s it.

Also, I’m no building systems PhD, but I’m fairly certain that each water source in a school does not have its own boiler room? Am I wrong about that? And aren’t they usually in the basement? And don’t they generally have all kinds of safety measures built into them which would allow you to touch the giant pipe that was prominently placed at face level without having to say goodbye to said face? And also am I just unfamiliar with the many boiler rooms that let you SEE INTO THE GIRL’S SHOWER? Is this a feature of boiler rooms now? Titty windows? WHEN did they add the titty windows? Whose job is it to maintain the titty windows and how, if the whole room gets so hot that just existing in the boiler room for sixty seconds when the heat is on can MELT A HUMAN, do the titty windows not break or melt or something? TELL ME OF THE TITTY WINDOWS, ARCHITECT FRIENDS.

Fuck this movie is bad. I’m going to speed through this shit so I can drink, not unlike the screenwriters must have.

Anyway, the following year a bunch of Asshole Teenagers go to an April Fools party (oh right, all those April Fools parties that the Cool Teens are constantly going to, so popular and real they are) when suddenly they start being killed one by one as the victims of murder pranks. (Though, if the point of the prank is to murder, I think it’s generally just known as murder? Again, the fuck do I know.)  Oh, also none of the women ever wear shirts. Also also one of them suffers a head injury that opens up her skull and she then reaches up into her brain matter, masturbates with her BRAIN, and dies as soon as she’s done orgasming. Cool, great. This is good writing. Great job, everyone, April Fools drinks on me SIKE IT’S POISON FUCK YOU WHY DID YOU WASTE TWO HOURS OF MY LIFE.

…..TWO HORRORS.

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This titty window seems reasonable now, THANKS ASSHOLES.
Bloody April Fools

Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys

Not to be confused with “Blood Lake,” the 1987 teen slasher flick, or “Blood Lake,” the 2006 porno, Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys is the (duh) Asylum film made exclusively for, wait for it, ANIMAL PLANET.

…..sure.

Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys is exactly what you think it will be – shitty CGI, over-the-top death scenes, and Christopher Lloyd.

Wait, what?

OH YES MY FRIENDS.

CHRISTOPHER FREAKING LLOYD.

Christopher Freaking Lloyd plays the Mayor of Killer Lamprey Town who tells the scientists who have arrived to combat and publicize the murder fish situation to go fuck themselves because KILLER LAMPREY TOWN IS FOR SURE SUPER SAFE AND I HEAR THEIR MAYOR IS THE BEST.

Spoiler alert: Christopher Lloyd dies on the toilet when a killer lamprey jumps up his asshole and shoots out his mouth! HURRAY!

Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys also stars Shannen Doherty of Beverly Hills 90210 and Jason Brooks of Days Of Our Lives to round out the famous-thirty-years-ago cast. It’s better than some Asylum movies, worse than other Asylum movies, so I’m going to wrap this review up and say….

…….THREE HORRORS.

However.

Now that I know that Animal Planet has an interest in creature feature horror…..how has no one made a My Cat From Hell movie???

HOW HAS NO ONE MADE A MY CAT FROM HELL MOVIE.

Picture this.

Cats across the country begin to turn on their owners in a slew of unexplained and adorable murders. Local law enforcement officers cower in fear as kittens feast on the corpses of the American people. The FBI get involved and are immediately overpowered. Brute force is clearly not the answer. The chain of command goes straight to the president. We need an expert. Someone must be called in to subdue the nation’s felines. The president picks up the red phone and dials.

ENTER JACKSON GALAXY – THE MOTHERFUCKING CAT DADDY.

THIS WILL RIVAL SHARKNADO. THIS WILL BE ANIMAL PLANET’S PATH TO GREATNESS. I will make the kickstarter, Jackson. I will hand out flyers. I will call studio execs. I will hand-pick all the cats. I will make this happen. All you have to do is give me the thumbs up and I will make My Cat From Hell: Purrminator HAPPEN. Please call me. Please, Jackson.

jackson
PLEASE JACKSON.

 

Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys

The Blood Beast Terror

Welcome to the “blood” section of the alphabet! Brought to you by: 1960s monster movies. What’s the monster this time, you ask?

WEREMOTH.

IT IS A WEREMOTH.

HALF MOTH.

HALF LADY.

WEREMOTH.

A mad scientist from the Victorian era starts fucking around with genetics and, naturally, he starts by combining a death’s head moth and a beautiful woman, because fuck curing cancer or whatever. The resulting WEREMOTH is a pretty lady during its pretty lady phase, and a Blood Beast Terror during the moth phase, in which it roams the streets of London, killing attractive young men and draining them of all their blood, which is not something I understood to be a feature of moths, but I am not A Scientist.

I mean. That’s really all I have to say about this. It’s cheap and dumb and from the 60s and all of those things put it somewhere between awful and great. It also tries to be a detective movie at the same time, starring Peter Cushing as a policeman who thinks that maybe it’s a bloodthirsty eagle going around killing everyone, a theory that makes marginally more sense than WEREMOTH.

….

….

I got nothing.

………THREE HORRORS.

WEREMOTH.

te9en0r
WEEEEEEEREMOOOOOOOOOOTH
The Blood Beast Terror

The Blair Witch Project

MOTHERFUCKING HELL YES.

We have arrived.

Finally, I get to talk about why I like found footage movies. Blair Witch is the first big hit of the genre and it really is a textbook example of found footage done right, with the exception of one glaring issue that I’ll get to later. NOBODY expected the Blair Witch inquisition. Horror movies at the time were kind of loud and dumb and obvious, even the good ones (which were more smart and loud and obvious). You always saw the monster, you always had a sweeping soundtrack to indicate when something was scary, and you always knew it wasn’t real. Blair Witch fucked all of that.

If by some miracle you have no idea what this movie is, let me take you back on a journey to 1999, a time when you could party like it was. Three grungy teen filmmakers head to Burkittsville, Maryland, to film a documentary about the ghost of a woman known as the Blair Witch who had been executed for witchcraft in 1785. The movie begins by stating that the three filmmakers are all missing and that the documentary footage you are about to watch is all they had to indicate what may have become of them, and they found it in the woods. The footage. That’s where they found it. That’s where they found the footage. The found footage.

First we see a bit of what their documentary was meant to be, interviews with the locals about the legend and their experiences of any paranormal activity in the woods. We learn that there was one dude who claimed to have been possessed by the witch – he lived in the woods as a hermit in the 40s and kidnapped and killed children in pairs in his basement, making one stand in the corner facing the wall while he killed the other. Later he would tell the police that a witch made him do it because IT’S ALWAYS THE WOMAN’S FAULT, ISN’T IT.

Then Teen 1, Teen 2, and Teen 3 all wander out into the woods to try to get some footage of the ghost witch. They hike around filming establishing shots and Teen 1 does some dramatic introductions of various important locations, like a rock where a shitload of men were ritualistically murdered in the 19th century. Then they walk not nearly far enough away from fucking Murder Rock and they camp. The next day they walk deeper in the woods despite not being super clear on where the fuck they’re going, BUT I BET YOU KNOW WHERE THIS IS GOING. They find more creepy shit and camp again. Then they try to hike back to the car.

BUT OH NO THEY ARE LOOOOOOOOOOOOST.

QUELLE SURPRIIIIIIIIIIIIISE.

And here we have an hour of The Teens bickering about who should have the map and where they should go, interspersed with creepy shit. And don’t get me wrong, the creepy shit is creepy. What starts as weird noises in the dark becomes cairns popping up outside their tent in the middle of the night and headless stick figures hanging from trees (as in figures literally made of sticks, not just drawings done by people who love to tell you how dumb and easy drawing is because they never went to art school and got raked over the fucking coals because their color theory isn’t perfect BECAUSE DRAWING IS ACTUALLY HARD. Moving on). Teen 1 is being a real bitch about taking control of the map and she’s freaking out the most. Teen 2 is grumpy, but Teen 3 gets so pissed at Teen 1 that he kicks the map into the river. Teens 1 and 2 lose their shit with Teen 3. All three Teens, furious at each other, hike in circles for several days in the creepy creepy woods, finding nothing but stick people and the disembodied laughter of children. Until one night…..when Teen 2 goes fucking missing.

Oh.

Shit.

This is where I’ll stop in case people haven’t actually seen this movie, because it is definitely worth seeing. But, just to get it out of the way, here are the two reasons it’s not worth seeing. One is….arguing teenagers. Like holy shit arguing teenagers forever. The creepy shit parts are pretty delicately sprinkled into the film, which is cool and means that you’re not being hit over the head by murder ghosts, but it also means that a lot of screen time is opened up to teenagers being lost and having teen feelings. There’s a lot of that. A LOT OF THAT. TOO MUCH OF THAT. Part of what makes a good found footage film work is the inclusion of footage that might not really directly connect to the plot, because the idea is that this is just when Joe Shmo turned the camera on and Joe Shmo doesn’t know where all this is going, so interspersed with foreshadowing and plot points is just some random shit, which adds to the realism. But holy fuck, when half of your movie is pissy teens being lost, it makes it hard for me to want to keep going.

My other problem with this film is also what makes it so special: the camera work. Documentary-style horror wasn’t a thing until Blair Witch, so the fact that we are watching handheld camera work was really pretty brand-new and cool at the time. But goddamn. The shaky cam. THE SHAKY CAM. The footage was literally shot by the actors on handheld cameras, so when the actors are trampling around the woods or running in the dark, you get tons and tons of shaky shaky dark trees. So many trees. So very many shitty footage of shaky, dark trees. Again, some of this is good. Found footage depends on believing that the film was not shot by a cameraman with a dolly and a sound studio. To a certain extent it does have to look like it’s handheld, which means some shakiness and some focusing on random things in the environment is good because that’s what happens when you have a camera in your hand and you don’t super give a shit. But jesus fuck is this physically hard to watch at times. When Blair Witch was released, a lot of people experienced motion sickness from the camera work, and a few even vomited in the theaters. Which, on the one hand, isn’t that what every horror movie hopes for? But on the other hand, not like that.

What makes this film so cool is the whole rest of it. It was the first horror movie to fully take advantage of the internet and it’s still what a lot of people go to when they think of viral marketing. They put up fake police reports and interviews about the missing Teens and even the IMDB page listed the actors as “missing, presumed dead.” The production team did everything they could to convince people that Blair Witch was a real documentary before they went into the theaters, and it worked. And everything in the film itself worked towards that goal as well. Blair Witch kept everything small and realistic – no theatrical score, no footage of the monster, no cameraman, no lighting, barely any script. If three real teens got lost in the woods with nothing but a camera, this is about what it would look like. And that level of realism is what makes even the tiniest indication of something creepy going on truly terrifying.

I could go on, but I’m sick of having to write an actual review of a good movie because that’s not what I’m goddamn here for so on that note……..FOUR POINT SEVEN FIVE HORRORS.

I can’t give it five, because fucking trees and teens, but Blair Witch really is a big deal and it, shall we say….SHOOK THINGS UP in the horror genre??? GET IT? BECAUSE THE FUCKING SHAKY TREES. It established a genre that would later be refined in films like Paranormal Activity (which I believe to be far superior to Blair Witch and fuck you, horror purists, you can take your fucking Real Opinions based on Film School and Pretentious Bullshit and you can get right on outta here with that nonsense and go make an actually good blog informed by facts and knowledge. NOT HERE. THIS IS MY HOUSE) and it did a really good job of it. I’ve actually kind of convinced myself to rewatch it just by writing this review…

But goddamn though.

Those trees.

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In their natural habitat.
The Blair Witch Project