Tag Archive | Jeffrey Combs

Jarv’s Schlock Vault: The Pit and the Pendulum

I’m sorry, mistress, that you weren’t properly able to confess. There just wasn’t enough time to torture you. 

Jarv’s Rating: 2 Changs out of 4. Not a classic, but not awful at all. 

This is a momentous day. I have nearly scaled the North Face of Stuart Gordon, in that I’ve almost seen every film he’s done. This, I feel is some achievement, and as I near the summit, I would like to pause before I take on the last film, King of the Ants, and have a look at the treacherous incline that I just navigated unscathed. As I sit here, touching distance from the peak, enjoying a quiet smoke, I have to say that I’m actually quite impressed at the consistent level of goodness that he’s turned out. There’s only really Stuck that’s dogshit, while everything else has been good to excellent. The Pit and the Pendulum is no exception Read More…

Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Faust- Love of the Damned

I am the pornography that gets you hot!

Jarv’s Rating: Yup, it gets the Ramirez of Insanity. This is a fundamentally terrible film, however it’s also one written by an angry posse of Manic Depressives who’ve been off the lithium for a while. Seriously, the climax of this film features a black mass/ orgy where a woman gives birth to a snake which is then fellated by a restrained guy smeared in that clay stuff that posh spas flog to credulous rich women as Facemask for £900 a tub before a giant penis demon appears and watches our villain have grubby S&M sex with our heroine while a guy in a terrible demon costume watches and cries for a while. Nuts. Completely and utterly nuts.

As I near the summit of Mount Yuzna, I have to say that for the most part it’s been a very pleasurable experience. The majority of the films on this list have been cheerful schlocky garbage, with a few legitimately underrated gems in there. Unfortunately, something seemed to go wrong for the big fella Post-Bride of Re-Animator, and with the exception of Beyond Re-Animator, the rest of them have been, well, pretty terrible. Entertaining as all hell, don’t get me wrong, but I’m starting to think that Society and the Re-Animator films are the exception rather than the rule. Take Faust: Love of the Damned, for example. I’m reliably informed that this mess is based on a funny book (oh dear), and I’m also reliably informed that it’s an “adult” funnybook. Now, when I hear that expression I automatically think of Hentai and Japanese schoolgirls being molested by giant Tentacle penis monsters from Dimension X (or whatever). Which really doesn’t bode well for the film. Read More…

The Underrated: Castle Freak

Recently, for reasons I can’t really put my finger on, I decided that the answer to my current mood with films was to attempt to watch every film made by Stuart Gordon. Now, don’t ask me why I decided to set out on such a foolish quest, but I seem to remember it having something to do with H. P. Lovecraft and that of the very few successful adaptations out there of his work, Gordon has done 2 of them. I originally, arrogantly, said that the sum total of good Lovecraft Adaptations was one: Re-Animator, which barely counts as a Lovecraft-sourced work. However, since then, I’ve seen both From Beyond and now Castle Freak and both of which are, much to my surprise, excellent.

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Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Beyond Re-Animator

That 3 Years I spent in solitary…. I did some of my very best work!

Jarv’s Rating: Two and a Half Changs out  of Four. While the law of diminishing returns is definitely kicking in with the Re-Animator series, there’s still much more to like here than dislike.

I’m feeling both extremely pleased and extremely cross with myself. Pleased because as of this morning  I have now completed the Re-Animator series and am approaching completion in both 100% Stuart Gordon (and brilliantly now also 100% Brian Yuzna), which is, let’s face it, a billion times better than the 100% PWS Anderson that I accidentally managed last month. However, I’m cross with myself because this is easily the best non-Evil Dead horror trilogy that I’ve seen and I should have epic reviewed it in Frank and Droid style. Moreover, I’m actually cross with the world in general, because there isn’t a Re-Animator Box Set available. Why the fuck not? I really want to buy it, and I think it would sit proudly on my shelf with the Pot of Gore, Attack Pack and Evil Dead collections. Read More…

Jarv’s Schlock Vault: From Beyond

It ate him… bit off his head… like a gingerbread man!

Jarv’s Rating: 3 Changs out of 4. Considering that this is based on H.P. Lovecraft, it really is a fantastic monster movie with a splendid beast, boob, gore and general giggles. And I thought that it couldn’t be done.

I feel a bit silly now. In the Re-Animator review the other day, I said that it wasn’t possible to adapt Lovecraft to the big screen, and that Re-Animator was the closest anyone could get and only managed it by taking enormous liberties with the source material. In my defence, I hadn’t seen From Beyond at the time, and I wasn’t even aware that it was a Lovecraft Adaptation. Still, ignorance is no excuse, and I would like to say that I’ve learnt a valuable lesson from this, but that would be a flagrant lie. I clearly haven’t.

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Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Bride of Re-Animator

This morbid doodling with human body parts… is this what it’s all about? Is this what all our great work has led to?

Jarv’s Rating: 3 Changs out of 4. This is how you fucking do it: completely loopy, rock-solid slice of deep-fried gold that mashes classical horror references in with some of the most gleefully demented insanity in any horror sequel.

Let’s be absolutely crystal clear from the word go: Bride of Re-Animator has about as much to do with H.P. Lovecraft as Silvio Berlusconi has to do with chastity and honesty. There was plenty of room at the end of the original classic Re-Animator to totally justify a sequel, and in 1990 Brian Yuzna took up the reins and returned with the full surviving cast (and a few undead ones) to Stuart Gordon’s finest hour. Except this time, the decision was made to go for a full-blown comedy. Actually, the film this most reminds me of is Frankenhooker, it’s got the same gleeful sense of stupidity as that film and it could quite easily have been made by Henenlotter- it’s got his sensibilities running right through it. Bride of Re-Animator is, simply put, an absolutely stupendous piece of schlock, a gore filled gigglefest that even the most po-faced gorehound could find some enjoyment in. Oh, and it features notorious decapitated undead cunt Dr. Hill- except this time it features Dr. Hill 2.0: with added cuntishness and bat wings. Read More…

Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Re-Animator

What would a note say, Dan? “Cat dead, details later”?

Jarv’s Rating: 3 and a half Changs out of 4. A fucking absolute classic of its kind: gross, irreverent and frequently hilarious, this is an absolutely essential zombie film.

Re-Animator, or “How to get a head in medicine”, is notable for a few reasons. Firstly, it is arguably the only successful Lovecraft adaptation out there (don’t give me that shit about Dagon being anything more than worthless), although I will take Carpenter’s In the Mouth of Madness as  a Lovecraft-inspired film. Secondly, it also spawned several sequels, the first of which: Bride of Re-Animator is a gross and hilarious reworking of Bride of Frankenstein tied in to the Re-Animator mythology. Thirdly, Re-Animator represents a career high for almost everyone involved in it, certainly Jeffrey Combs will never put in another performance even remotely in the same league as his turn here, and finally, it’s just fucking gold from start to finish, combining some midnight-black comedy with excellent practical effects, and a skyscraper high level of entertainment. This is a storming film. Read More…