Posts Tagged ‘Maniac Cop’

Media Update 10/5/17

October 5, 2017

Ghoulies II

I just had to give the sequel a shot after I kind of liked the original film. Ghoulies had the bad luck of coming out around the same time as Gremlins which ended up overshadowing it (and other similar films). It and this sequel were also attacked during the satanic panic of the 1980s. Critics thought that both films glorified summoning demons. Once again, these religious nuts did not watch the movies they were trying to attack. There is definitely demons that get summoned in both films, they got that part right. However, in neither film does anybody have a good time or benefit for long by summoning demons.

Anyway, I thought that this sequel was much better than the original. This movie actually benefited from Gremlins because it injected more of the fun I like into the proceedings. The original was kind of somber and creepy. This one was way more fun but also still creepy. There is no way you have such good puppets as the Ghoulies and they do not end up being creepy. The puppets are slimy and their movements are so realistic and the subtle voice acting really sells it. The original was set in a drafty old manor. The sequel is set in a traveling carnival so there is a lot more eye candy and more interesting characters to grab onto. The sequel also has actual protagonists instead of focusing on the villain of the movie so there is an actual conflict between good and evil. The kills were also way more inventive but just as creepy and unsettling as the first film. I felt my skin crawling a lot when the ghoulies were on screen and especially when they were on the attack. I definitely recommend this to fans of old-school campy horror films.

Maniac Cop III: Badge of Silence

This has been an interesting series and I am kind of sad to reach the end of it. The series started with Bruce Campbell and that was what drew me to it in the first place. For a B horror movie series, the movies are surprisingly socially conscious. A framed cop is arrested and sent to prison where he is killed by the criminals he helped catch. He comes back as a revenant, pulling himself back to life to avenge the injustice against him. Since that story was resolved in the second movie, the third movie has him returning to face public injustice towards a police officer instead. It is up to Robert Davi to solve the real crime to try and stop the Maniac Cop from killing more people. The chinful Robert Z’Dar once again plays Officer Cordell who is the titular Maniac Cop.

Once again it is directed by William Lustig who seems to be a good friend of Sam Raimi. Their styles are definitely similar as the dialogue and the action hit a similar groove to the Evil Dead series. There is not as much comedy but there are plenty of interesting special effects. Z’Dar’s Maniac Cop is just so fun to watch and his unstoppable nature seems even stronger than Jason or Michael. It is a shame that Lustig has disavowed this film and did not want to continue the series. They had to bring in another director to finish it and edit in a lot of outtakes from the previous film. I still recommend the movie as Z’Dar and Davi and the rest of the cast (including Jackie Earle Haley!) really save the movie.

Bride of Re-Animator

After watching Re-Animator for the first time last year, I was absolutely disgusted but excited to watch the sequel. Based on an HP Lovecraft series, the Re-Animator movies are pretty crazy. I have not seen a lot of movies quite like it. Herbert West is one of the most interesting characters I have seen in a horror film. His deadpan delivery is at times frightening and other times it is funny instead. He is also so morally ambiguous. Like Victor Frankenstein, he pursues forbidden knowledge through distilling magical science goo that brings the dead back to life (hence the title). Everything is his fault but he never intends any harm which leaves him in a frustrating gray area. In this sequel, Herbert and his buddy Jake return from serving in the Peruvian civil war. They resume West’s experiments with the undead but they have a lot of unresolved issues from the first movie. This was released in 1990 but it definitely feels like an eighties horror film. Once again, the body horror is off the charts and makes my skin crawl. I feel like this movie definitely inspired the writers and effects team for Ash vs. The Evil Dead. I definitely recommend it but watch the original first for the full effect.

Music of the Week:
W.A.S.P. – Scream Until You Like It

Ariana Grande – Dangerous Woman

The Nearly Deads – My Evil Ways

The Steeldrivers – “Ghosts Of Mississippi”

Ghost – Cirice

Weekly Update:
– This Week’s theme is “Sequels of Halloween Stuff I Reviewed Previously II”
– I watched more The Good Place Season 1
– I watched more Gotham Season 3
– I watched more House of Cards Season 2
– I finished Bojack Horseman Season 4
– I watched more Glitter Force Season 2
– I watched more Santa Clarita Diet Season 1
– I watched more Little Witch Academia Season 1

Maniac Cop

October 31, 2015

When I was in college, my brother took a trip to Thailand. When he returned to the United States he presented everyone with gifts and the gift he gave me was Maniac Cop 2. Unfortunately, the movie was in Region 3 since it was bought in Asia and I couldn’t play it on anything I could get my hands on. I always regretted that. My brother had no idea that the DVD wouldn’t work and somewhere in my travels I lost it. It’s probably a lot easier to watch it now, Region 3 or not. Still, the movie intrigued me and he bought it for me because it had Bruce Campbell in it and he knew I was a huge fan of the Evil Dead series.

Over the years I continued to be a fan of the Evil Dead but also a fan of Bruce himself. He seems to love all of the fans of schlocky horror and is really good at poking fun at himself. He finally achieved more mainstream success when he got a main role in Burn Notice. So, yes, Bruce Campbell attracted me to finally checking this movie out. However, it also includes three other notable actors in it as well. Tom Atkins is arguably the lead protagonist of the movie and you may know him from my favorite movie from the Halloween franchise (Halloween 3: Season of the Witch). Richard Roundtree makes a prominent appearance, an interesting break from all of his Shaft movies. Finally we have Robert Z’Dar whose strange bone structure is easily recognizable especially in movies like Soultaker (easily one of my favorite MST3K episodes).

I should probably mention the elephant in the room. This movie is about a man dressed as a police officer murdering people. Lately this has become a frighteningly commonplace news item to see an officer of the law killing a suspect or innocent person with excessive force. Of course, this isn’t a new thing. All of us alive at the time remember the Rodney King beating and the riots that ensued. Before that there was the excessive force employed against the civil rights movement in the sixties. There have been many other instances of a person with a badge overstepping the boundaries and injuring or murdering somebody. Obviously, this movie draws on that fear we feel when we see a cop car or a police officer in public even though we have done nothing wrong. I’m glad that the protagonists are also cops which helps remind us that their are good guys out there too.

The movie is actually far from a cheap eighties afair that I thought it would be. They actually poured quite a bit of money into it and the effects and cinematography are top notch for a horror film. The movie has a similar feel to movies like Death Wish and Wolfen. A lot of movies back then had a dark, grainy quality that worked with horror movies like this. One year later Batman would be released but this movie feels like it’s from the late seventies instead. New York is shown as indifferent, paranoid and angry especially when it comes to police officers. It’s not an optimistic film nor does it have any sunny characters. Even Bruce Campbell is without his trademark quips.

This was a movie about a police officer, back from the dead to kill the innocent and those who wronged him. Easy comparisons could be made to Jason Voorhees or Michael Myers but this killer is far more intelligent. By keeping the villain silent and shooting him beautifully, they were able to keep him mysterious and menacing until the end of the movie. I definitely recommend checking this one out as it has a lot of good, suspenseful fun.

(Check back here at noon for the next movie!)

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