Saturday, May 22, 2010

movies left for dead

Let's Scare Jessica to Death
(1971) A psychological chiller rarely mentioned, Let's Scare pre-dates some of horror's most influential films, allowing it to walk its own path. While it does have that 1970s horror film atmosphere, the movie only plays mind games with the namesake character and ultimatly the viewer. The emotional mess Jess has recently left a mental hospital. She, her husband and a pal move to a big house in rural Connecticut, where Jess starts seeing things and hearing voices. It's not clear if all the images she sees are real or in her mind. Meanwhile, they are acquainted with a woman who they find already living in the house. She turns out to be either a vampire, a ghost or just a sick and twisted drifter who strums a stringed instrument with audio dubbed over it (yes!). In the early 70s this must have spooked people, but with a lack of meaning and no closure, the film--even with its moments of suspense--comes up short in its attempt to scare. [rating: $5] -Kenyon

They (aka Invasion from Inner Earth) (1981) The cheapest of cheap effects (smoke bombs), non-existent action and excessive speaking from the main characters is what this abomination of film making relies on. Providing little to no sense at all, They makes Plan 9 from Outer Space look like the Day the Earth Stood Still. For most of the 90 minutes, five people sit around in a secluded cabin, speculating about the chaos in the world supposedly caused by aliens who are never even shown! It's assumed it is the aliens randomly communicating over ham radio in robotic voices, saying things like, "how many are you"? Adding to the beyond amateur low budget is the method of making people disappear. Mmmbop they are there, mmmbop they're gone! Why that even happens isn't explained. As if things weren't confusing enough, this "movie" has been under at least three different titles with various cover arts that are all misleading. The cover of my copy has only the face of a reptilian-like creature with fangs. [rating: $0] -Kenyon

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