Tag Archive | Low Budget

Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Boston Girls


Slam Pig! 

I have genuinely come to the conclusion that modern exploitation films tend to be hideous. It is true, though, that almost all exploitation has been awful, with only a few gems standing out from the crowd, but the difference was that the 1970’s films were attempting to overcome limitations imposed on them by budget, talent, time and so forth and there were a few that genuinely transcended their lowly origins. Whereas 21st Century exploitation has none of the limitations the 70’s film makers had to overcome, and instead intentionally makes the films shoddy, grainy and more seriously unpleasant than they had to be. It was with this in mind that I decided to inflict Boston Girls on myself, and I didn’t have a lot in the way of hope for it.

Contains cack handed faux feminism and spoilers below  Read More…

Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Sand Sharks

They’ll come like a porker at a cupcake buffet.

There’s a new rising star of Sciffy big animal eating people nonsense. Seriously, I’ve just decided, based entirely on watching Sand Sharks, that Brooke Hogan has a potentially great career ahead of her in this type of nonsense. She’s a terrible actress, don’t get me wrong, and Sand Sharks is a fundamentally very silly film indeed, but I think this may be the big fish eating people film that I’ve got the most enjoyment out of for a long time. It’s, and I can’t believe I’m saying this, intentionally very very funny on more than one occasion.

Contains SHARKS IN THE FUCKING SAND and spoilers below. Read More…

Jarv’s Birthday Series Redux: Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn (1983)

Nearly there…

It’s down to the early 80’s in this run through the Birthday Series. For those that aren’t familiar, the idea is to pick a film released as close as possible to your birthday. In my case, that’s 23rd of August. The early 80’s are always a witheringly inconsistent time, as 1982 and 1984 are two of the greatest all-time years for genre cinema, but there’s a frankly obscene amount of trash released around it. So, for my 1983 effort, it’s Metalstorm: the Destruction of Jared-Syn (19th August in the US),  a Charles Band (of Full Moon fame) sci-fi effort that makes almost no sense whatsoever.

May contain power crystals and spoilers below. Read More…

The Lovefilm Experiment: Adam Chaplin

Step right up, step right up. Who wants to chance their arm on a lucky dip from Lovefilm’s recommendations?

The options are:

  1. Adam Chaplain
  2. Biutiful
  3. Cell 211
  4. Lovefilm’s trailer reel (out, for reasons too obvious to go in to)
  5. The Dark Knight
  6. Batman Begins
  7. Stargate
  8. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (out, previously reviewed here)
  9. 300
  10. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

So, to the Random Number Generator- an 8 or a 4 means I’m respinning. Here we go….

And lucky winner is Adam Chaplin, something I’ve never even heard of before. Still, it can’t be worse than the last effort- the frankly piss poor The Bounty Hunter.

Contains truly ridiculous levels of violence and spoilers below Read More…

Quantum Droid: Primer (2004)

Quantum-DroidI was complaining recently about the misuse of the awesomeness of time travel when I reviewed the film ‘The Philadelphia Experiment’ for the 1984 entry in my birthday series. Of that film I said “The film drags along in a seemingly never ending series of tedious scenes that fail to develop anything interesting and then ends in a fury of special effects.” But by comparison with ‘Primer’ that film was a veritable hive of activity. And that isn’t a criticism of ‘Primer’ at all. It’s actually a testament to the fact that if you intelligently craft a film of challenging complexity, a film that fails to build an interesting story, and instead relies on a far fetched plot and whizz bang special effects, will look pretty silly in comparison. I’ve tried to keep the details of ‘Primer’ under wraps, so for those that haven’t seen it, hopefully there’s no dramatic spoilers lying in wait. And if there is, you can rest assured that they won’t help you understand the film any better.

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Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Frankenhooker

Medical schools upset me, mother – I’m anti-social – I’m becoming dangerously amoral.

Jarv’s Rating: 3 Changs out of 4. Fucking hilarious, grade-A piece of schlock. A wickedly stupid premise, with enough laughs to keep the average schlock-hound in hysterics almost the entire time and enough twisted ideas to keep psychoanalysts extremely busy.

Frank Henenlotter needs more work. Honestly, I know this sounds daft, but the man has made only 10 films- of which the 5 that I’ve seen with one exception are all absolutely brilliant pieces of hilarious schlock. This is the man who unleashed the crazed Siamese twin Belial on the world in the stupendous Basket Case trilogy, thereby introducing humanity to the extremely funny idea of mutant rubber sex. Alright, the third Basket Case one was a bit of a stinker, being about Mutant Rubber Obstetrics, but despite not getting anywhere near the level of the first two, it was so gleefully inventive that it was extremely likable. Frankenhooker was made around about the same time as the 2 Basket Case sequels in 1990, and I can honestly say that I haven’t enjoyed a piece of trash as much as this in a hell of a long time.

Where to begin, where to begin….

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Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Basement Jack

You will learn not to be a bad boy

Jarv’s Rating: Damn it, I’m really not sure. Oh, what the fuck, half a Chang out of 4. Completely derivative and uninspired slasher movie with a reasonably cool villain and a fucking stupid ending. Not to mention a fucking stupid beginning and a pretty fucking stupid middle.

Not to be confused with electronica/ house act Basement Jaxx. I never really liked them, but I do have to concede that they did have their moments, before they became confused about being actual “artists” rather than sample merchants. Still that “Where’s your head at?” video was pretty cool. The one with the monkeys. This film, on the other hand, does not feature monkeys, particularly monkeys that have ugly human faces and glasses and whatnot. It does, however, feature a stab at a new “slasher” villain, a couple of decent performances and a pretty well thought out origin story. It is also pretty fucking stupid. Read More…

Jarv’s Schlock Vault: One Eyed Monster

Want to know what the hell it sounded like? I think it sounded like… 30 men getting massacred by a dick

Jarv’s Rating: 2 and a half Changs out of 4. Honestly, and I know this sounds like the dumbest thing you’ll read all day (with the exception of the rest of the review), but this is intentionally funny.

Sometimes when a poor sap is forced to work on a Saturday he just wants to come home, have a beer, smoke a spliff and watch something very silly. This weekend that poor sap was me, and after a hard day’s feigning interest in the office, I duly came home, drank a beer, smoked some weed and put on One Eyed Monster. Which, to be honest, I didn’t have a lot of hope for. Read More…

Post Millennial Trauma Part 2: Ginger Snaps (2001)

Second up on my dispiriting trek through what passes for Horror in the 21st Century, and I do have to say, that so far this is one of the easier series that I’ve inflicted on myself. To begin with, I’m not at the whim of a complete catalogue by one director, so can avoid any bad periods, and secondly the only constraint I’ve got is that it has to be a really good film released from in the year in question. Luckily, I can fudge dates a wee bit to include things like Ginger Snaps as 2001, or even Audition as 2000, but on the whole, I’m feeling very confident about finishing this one.

If only I hadn’t picked horror… Read More…

Jarv’s Schlock Vault: Len Kabasinski Special Part 1- Swamp Zombies.

Let me introduce you to a man named Len. He’s a cheap and cheerful director of pure schlock from Pennsylvania. I’m going to go through all his films in order, and attempt to do actual criticism of them, rather than throw the word “cunt” around a lot. So it these may not be the most entertaining reviews I’ve ever done. Nevertheless, here we go with his debut feature, 2005’s Swamp Zombies.

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