SCHLOCK VALUE: ISSUE #9 – THE RETURN OF SCHLOCK – JULY EDITION
*Phew* finally, I’m back after a hiatus that spanned many months and many moon. I have been engaged in many other projects which have kept me from diving back into the cinematic septic tank and sampling the… delicacies that are up for offer. So kicking of my mighty return I thought I’d celebrate by including the much talked about MEGA SHARK versus GIANT OCTOPUS. If you follow the Schlock Value myspace page you’ll know that it’s a flick I’ve held high on my list of must see pieces of crap. In addition I’ve served up a dish of PSYCHO COP, a movie so confusingly bad it’s inhuman to watch twice, but I did anyway. Just for you guys. And finally is RetarDEAD, a movie that I’m not even going to tease you with. So scroll on down and dine with me tonight, it’s gonna get cheesy!
I’ve spent the last couple of hours leading up to this write up wondering how one goes about reviewing a movie whose title is superior to many movies made nowadays, which, though valid enough, is no slight on movies of today’s creation. It is in actuality a simple truth about the movies sheer cheesy genius and also a not so cleverly concealed way of being a review for one best bad movies I have ever see laid my eyes on.
Mega Shark versus Giant Octopus is without a shadow of a doubt one of – if not – the best so bad it’s good shit flick every to come out of the cesspit of crap pies churned out by The Asylum. Though not all that ballsy a statement in itself it’s fucking true. The title alone brings a tear to many peoples eye, and just a glance at the all to famous trailer can give people a need to change their pants. And you know what? It’s fucking hideous!
The film opens in gorgeous Antarctica brought to life with what is most likely 90% stock footage, including some simply captivatingly obvious mismatched shots of coral reefs. Obviously someone forgot to hire continuity. Above the water is some dude in a helicopter who drops an illegal sonar device into the waters below where Deborah Gibson and a characterless minion are going for a wildlife cruise only to get into a head on collision with a bunch of quite frankly oversized whales which are getting pissed off with the sonar device and decide it’d be a grand idea to run head on into a nearby ice wall and accidently release the titled Mega Shark and his aquatic buddy the Giant Octopus who both go swimming off into the deep blue and BAM no sooner are they release then they start reeking holy hell on human kind.
Our eight tentacles gargantuan starts by fucking up the day of an oilrig somewhere near Japan and – wait a minute, did I just hear those guys talking about pissing on people? Oh, sorry Giant Octopus, right. Well despite being oh so very giant he doesn’t manage to kill everyone, no-no, quite conveniently a single Asian looking but oh so very Australian sounding worker gets out alive and unscathed so he can actually draw the beasts eye to the government. Yes indeed, they give him a paper and pencil and he draws an eye thank you government of the world, you know your shit.
I almost forgot the finned counterpart who gets his kicks out of literally leaping from the water, into the air and nabbing a Boeing 747 out of the fucking sky… no typos there my friends. That’s right, a 50 something meter long shark leaps from the water through the clouds all so it can eat a plane with absolutely no rhyme or reason other then it looked cool. Indeed the scene lasts for all of seven seconds and plays no part in the story at all but my got did it look awesome.
Oh shit, the human characters, right, right, right… them. Well for those who care, Deborah Gibsons character Emma MacNeil – who by the way is a Marine Biologist, bet you didn’t expect to see one of those – and her mentor of old, Lamar Sanders, conduct an intensive scientific analysis involving colourful liquids being mixed and many bemused looks and approving head nod, oh and Sanders looked into a microscope once! And they do this so they can determine that the foot long tooth they found does indeed belong to a big fucking shark! With this startling revelation made they enlist the help of Seiji Shimada who is investigating the oil rig incident and the three begin a lifelong quest to save the world from tyranny and bring equality to humanity by way of truth justice and an ability to deliver painfully awkward dialogue… okay so maybe that’s a bit of a lie… except for that last part. But they determine that they’re hunting too separate creatures because of one obvious inconsistency, and I quote, the creature from the drawings has an “enormous eye with a slit shaped pupil” now I’m no genius but I think those tentacles might be the major give away but hey, I’m no scientist.
And then… the flash cuts appear. Nearly every single time there’s a cut it’s accompanied by the screen flashing white and a whooshing sound effect. Why? I have no fucking clue. Like much of this movie there’s no reason for any of it. And speaking of unnecessary, keep an eye out for the ominous Seagull shot early in the film.
After being unwillingly recruited by a Lorenzo Lamas lead government sanctioned crack team, our trio, under armed surveillance, set about trying to create a way of luring the two creature so they can capture them (because capturing giant killer monsters has always worked in the past). Again this hyper scientific experiment consists mostly of mixing the red food dye with the blue food dye and looking disappointed when it doesn’t make a pretty colour. During this time the sexual tension between MacNeil and Shimada, which has been, building quite lack lustre for the last couple of minutes reaches a fever pitch and climaxes (hee hee) in nerdy maintenance room sex. So much for that armed surveillance huh? After their little mop room romp they figure out that they can use pheromones to attract the creatures.
Their plans don’t go quite as smoothly as they’d like and results in the Megaladon taking a chomp out of a submarine and then, get this, the mother fucking golden gate bridge! No joke, if the plane wasn’t already enough it jumps out and bites the bridge in half. No reason. Just because. Why not right? God I love this movie!
Their Plan B? Fuck catching them, lure the two together and get the fuckers to duke it out. Their justification? They didn’t run and hide during the ice age so… they obviously hate each other… duh… you’ve got to wonder just how high the writers were when doing this.
After much convoluted dialogue, which amounts to very little more then run time filler and attempted character development the real reason anyone bought this DVD gets underway. It’s an hour and fifteen minutes into the movie but the title fight is finally underway with much squeezing, ink squirting and limb chomping. During which time the Octopus finds a moment to kick the ass of Shimada’s submarine. Resuming their not quite epic but still rather entertaining head to head, the two gargantuans wind up in a tie, having killed each other. How? I’m not entirely sure, I think the Octopus squeezed Megaladon to death and the Octopus kinda… just… bleed… to death. The point is they’re dead.
Just when you think it’s over Shimada pops out of the depths in an emergency scuba pod, somehow the sole survivor of his subs destruction. Our trio and ol’ Lorenzo Lamas swim away, living to tell the tale. And the film ends with the love birds sitting on the beach admiring the cliché of it all and leaving room for a sequel that so desperately needs to be made.
I can’t believe I’m going to say this about an Asylum movie but… I’m glad this was made! I am really glad one can own such a fine piece of schlock cinema. One of the very best so bad it’s good monster romps we had in years.
MEGA SHARK versus GIANT OCTOPUS TRAILER
PSYCHO COP was spawned in the year 1989 by WALLACE POTTS
In 1989 a filmmaker sat down and had a vision, he saw a video store, and in that video store there was a kid. A curious boy (or girl to be politically correct) he was, and this curious boy just so happened to be browsing the shelves of the video store in search of a movie that his friend had recommended him. This boys friend had promised him, swearing on his life, that the movie was scary, that it was super awesome, that it had to be seen no matter what. And so the young boy had taken his friends advice and gone searching, which is how he found himself walking the horror section of the video store. If only he could remember the name of that movie, what was it? What was it? It was something cop… Killer Cop? No that wasn’t it… Crazy Cop? No not that either. Dammit, the kid swore. He knew that it was something similar to that, some variation of the word crazy. If only he could remember – AH-HA! There it is… sitting on the shelf, sandwiched next to some black and white movie by some old guy with the word cock in his name, was the movie… Psycho Cop. That MUST be it… right?
And with that my friends, I give you an insight into what was likely the mindset of the makers of Psycho Cop and their attempt, realising good and well the quality of film they produced, to have their movie seen… when all else fails, rip off a better one.
Psycho Cop begins boringly enough with – surprise, surprise – the titled Psycho Cop being all, well… psycho. He knocks off a couple who come across some his earlier handy work before BAM. We cut to the next day and are introduced to our cliché and over preppy teenagers being played by obviously not teenage actors, complete with awkward acting and knowing one liners such as; “…there’s no such thing as a free ride. Someone always has to pay.” Are you ready for surprise number two? They’re heading into the woods to a holiday house for a weekend of underage drinking and premarital sex.
Along the way they catch the attention of out unlawful psycho who secretly follows them to their weekend getaway. Where our teenies soon meet the resident care taker who looks like he just stepped out of a Fabio lookalike contest, sprouting such brilliantly written lines like; “I’m the caretaker here, I live over there.” and incase you haven’t guessed already, I will be quoting the movie throughout this thing because by god is this some of the worst written trash I have ever had the misfortune to have seen.
The obvious survivor girl gets her first brush with her inbuilt spidey senses – they come standard with the stereotype – when she senses someone watching her. This is brushed off by one of the others as simple paranoia, the first but certainly not the last time such an event occurs. Bear with me, you’ll see what I mean.
The filmmakers attempt to throw suspicion on the caretaker almost immediately, which fails epically because we know he’s not the Psycho Cop as we’ve already seen his identity! Nevertheless one of the characters becomes suspicious of the caretaker but this too is soon brushed off as simple paranoia.
Meanwhile there’s a lot of shots of the Psycho Cop traipsing about in knee high black boots to the sound of DUN-DUN music which I suppose is supposed to be scary and suspenseful but fails immensely. Also, why do they keep trying to conceal the Psycho Cops identity? Again, we have already seen his freakin’ face! Anyway, the caretaker must have contracted survivor girls spidey senses because there’s a scene where he’s just walking along and then for no reason at all, stops, and looks around cautiously before deciding nothing is there. But there is… a Psycho Cop, and he’s drawing pentagons in the dirt with his finger… because that’s what Psycho Cops do… right?
So then we get to see the teenagers being all carefree and yuppie like before their fun is interrupted by the sound of the caretaker chopping wood, which for some reason causes them to become super suspicious like it’s the sound of tortured kittens instead of everyday manliness. Unbeknownst to them however it’s really the Psycho Cop. When the caretaker realises his beloved axe has been thieved he confronts him and is killed without a sound. The teens hear the caretakers screams of agony and… wait a minute, he didn’t scream! How the fuck does continuity fuck up that badly? Hell all it takes is to throw a scream sound into the edit and you can bandage that gaping continuity wound quick smart but no, that’s how incredibly cheap and shoddy this movie is. They can’t even be bothered doing that.
Brushing off the sound as being part of the music – funny I would have put it down to simple paranoia – they sit down to lunch and more booze when a news report of a woman’s disappearance and evidence of linked devil worship comes in over the radio causing more paranoia to be dismissed. And I quote; “just because a woman did not come home one night, doesn’t mean something happened to her.” this is swiftly followed up with Doug looking for the missing caretaker, with; “just because a guy is not around, doesn’t mean something has happened to him.” Mr. Writer/Director Wallace Potts, you sir are a good example of why people keep letting Uwe Boll make movies.
Our teenie buddies come across a bunch of wooden crosses planted by the Psycho Cop, casting more unconvincing suspicion on the caretaker. Laura in all her survivor girl wisdom gets the feeling that something isn’t right, backed up by the ever deep voiced Doug the two secure their roles as potential survivors. Watching the pair work their tag team is nothing short of painful.
Night falls and the Psycho Cop starts playing mind games with the our heroes by taking their shit right out from beneath their noses; “just because we can’t find them, doesn’t mean someone stole them!” I swear to god the writing process was as simple as cut and paste. So douche bag Zack heads into town to get more beer when he finds the road blocked and delivers one cringe worthy monologue to himself about finding a beer before being offed to such wonderful one liners; “you have the right to remain silent,” and “shouldn’t drink and drive, it’s against the law.” believe me when I say they’re really riding the killer cop angle to as far as they can take it.
Back at the house Doug is once again accused of yet more paranoia, and you can bare witness to the further downward spiral of the films literary quality. It’s like watching an awkward school play put on by first time actors still reading their lines off of cue cards. They might as well draw a face on a wall and call it an actor because that’s about as good as the performances ever get in this.
Fast forward a good twenty minutes and very little story progression has occurred. The bimbo is lured into the woods with her hair brush and is run down and the word “paranoid” is repeated another sixty billion times. A further twenty minutes and still nothing more then the “paranoid” word count has changed. It’s not until the 71 minute mark that anything really happens. We learn the Psycho Cops real identity as someone we’ve never heard of before. Apparently he was a mental patient who managed to become a cop! Now I’m no expert on all that is policeman-ish but I’m pretty sure that if some dude who walks around and looks like a human being with a metal pole shoved up his ass and pumped full of energy drinks on an hourly basis were to break out of a nuthouse and try to become a cop they’d catch on pretty fucking quick that he’s not all there. I mean seriously, one look at the motherfucker and you shoot him on sight.
The film culminates in – surprise, surprise – our survivor duo going toe to toe with Psycho Cop who is defeated by Doug who javelins a tree branch into him! I kid you not. I know he’s supposed to be a football playing type but seriously, he tosses and skewers the fuck out of him. He’s more freakin’ superhuman then the Psycho Cop for christ sake.
In conclusion my friends, Psycho Cop makes for a great social experiment in seeing what effect the same recycled shit painted different colours will do to a viewer, try it out on a friend and see what happens. But don’t be surprised when they try to strangle you for submitting them to such inhuman and merciless torture. Psycho Cop is so bad that it almost physically hurts to sit through it… I don’t know if even I can recommend this. But it’s an experience to be sure.
PSYCHO COP TRAILER
RetarDEAD was spawned in GOD ONLY KNOWS WHEN and by GOD ONLY KNOWS WHO (but for the purists it’s 2008 and STEVE GRAINGER respectively)
There is a problem with the world and let me tell you what that problem is… RetarDEAD. The problem, you ask. Well, it exists for starters! I just got sent a copy of the DVD in the mail, delivered in little more then a paper slip case. It was like getting top secret information, only it was in the form of crappy movie. This has quite possibly changed the way I think about schlock, it’s certainly redefined the idea of cheap. Not to mention bottom of the barrel as well as low brow as fuck to top it all off! This is so bad that it’s bad to a point where it circles back around and become even worse. It’s fucking glorious!
The event – because this is no mere movie watching – begins with the biggest and most amazing surprise I have been given in a while. See the movie starts by ripping off Grindhouse by including flux trailers and an old school animated intermission like that you’d have experienced on 42 nd street back in the day. But that wasn’t what got me, see for a good year I have been searching for the movie that I had once seen a screen cap for which promised “SCENES OF PANT SHITTING TERROR” and low and behold here it is! It just fell right into my lap and I was reduced to a quivering heap of human, laughing so hard the moment that shot came up that it hurt.
But I am distracted, because all that comes before the film starts and when it does it starts it’s downhill ride at breakneck speed. It opens with the most hideous quality footage I have seen in long time, my mobile phone records clearer video then this for Christ sake. So this little girl wakes up after having a dream about an evil doctor who created ‘the poop man’ – this is a sequel by the way – she proceeds to tell the story to her father. See Dr. Stern (the poop man maker) is an evil genius with a plan. He wears an eye patch to cover up a burn – which changes shape and texture in every scene – and sets up shop in an abandoned factory before setting about continuing his prior experiments and creating the ultimate super genius by becoming a teacher at a special school and experimenting on the mentally handicapped. All the while the police are in pursuit of a criminal known only as “the weenie wacker.”
Three stories converge into one as FBI Agent Hannigan – whom I assume is a continuing character from the previous movie – and the two bumbling idiot cops pursuing “the weenie wacker” cross paths, uncovering Dr. Sterns plan which has gotten out of control. The super intelligence drug has one hell of a side effect in that it turns people into zombies. They break out and go on a rampage of lacklustre proportions, brought to life by heinously bad special effects that I don’t think will be rivalled in my lifetime. Keep an eye out for the clay model head shot, you’ll see it an be amazed.
You will be amazed at how truly cheap this film looks. Literally. There are times when you can see the tape holding shit together, including the police lights affixed badly to the top of the jeep that’s supposed to pass as a police vehicle and the spray paint on the guns is worn off. It tries way to hard to be funny and looks to be made by people with no idea how to edit in even the most basic of fashions and takes shot on digital crap to a whole new level. It’s special in a way only a movie about zombie retards could be.
And as a follow up, I’d like to point out the fact that not only did the DVD come in a paper slipcase and have a spelling error in the menu but in the trailers menu there is an option button that still has the default template text. What does that tell you?