5 | Varied Celluloid

Dressed to Kill

Posted by Josh Samford On October - 12 - 2013

Dressed to Kill (1980)
Director: Brian De Palma
Writers: Brian De Palma
Starring: Michael Caine, Angie Dickinson, Nancy Allen, and Keith Gordon

The Plot: Our film begins by focusing on the unhappily married Kate Miller (Angie Dickinson). Kate has a son named Peter (Keith Gordon) who is a bit of a genius, even if he lacks certain social skills. Kate has kept her unhappiness away from her family, but when she spends time with her psychologist, Dr. Robert Elliott (Michael Caine), she unleashes all of her darkest secrets. After trying to seduce Dr. Elliot, Kate finds herself later in the day playing cat-and-mouse with a stranger in an art gallery. When she and the stranger finally decide to talk to one another, rather than teasing one another inside of the gallery, they find themselves overcome with lust. Next, Kate finds herself stepping out of this strange man’s bed, leaving a note in his room. Unknown to Kate, she is currently being stalked by a deranged killer. As she attempts to leave this apartment building, she is ultimately killed by the stalker. In her final moments, the only person to attempt to save her is a prostitute by the name of Liz Blake (Nancy Allen), who catches a glimpse of the killer – who appears to be a blonde female. However, we soon learn that this killer is actually a transgender patient of Dr. Elliot, and her name is Bobbi. Bobbi is soon leaving threatening voice messages on Dr. Elliot’s answering machine, and since Dr. Elliot appears too scared to go to the police, they have only Liz to point their finger at. Soon, Liz joins forces with Peter in order to clear Liz’s name and help Peter gain revenge on the person who killed his mother.

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Prince of Darkness

Posted by Josh Samford On October - 17 - 2012

Prince of Darkness (1987)
Director: John Carpenter
Writers: John Carpenter
Starring: Donald Pleasence, Jameson Parker, Victor Wong, and Lisa Blount

The Plot: Prince of Darkness begins with a priest, played by Donald Pleasence, inviting Professor Howard Birack (Victor Wong) to visit his church in Los Angeles in order to investigate a very peculiar finding. Birack begins to assemble a large number of his students along with several other experts. The goal is to fully investigate a large cylinder found in the basement of this church. Filled with swirling green liquid, this cylinder seems to have a great deal of power surrounding it. Among Birack’s brightest students are Brian Marsh (Jameson Parker) and his girlfriend Catherine Danforth (Lisa Blount). As this large assembly of young scientist look to spend the night in this decrepit old church, their preliminary investigations begin coming up quite irregular. The green slime appears to be sentient, and it is rapidly increasing its complexity. The lid on the cylinder dates back seven million years and yet shows a great deal of intellect in its design. Nothing seems to add up in a logical sense, and yet things become even more frightening due to the homeless strangers who are currently surrounding the church. These people, who appear to grimace at anyone that stands inside of the church, show no physical reaction to our characters who are currently inhabiting the church. As the night moves on, it becomes more and more obvious that whatever is in this cylinder holds a very dark secret that may very well hold clues to the end of mankind as we know it.

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Posted by Josh Samford On October - 6 - 2012

Re-Animator (1985)
Director: Stuart Gordon
Writers: Stuart Gordon, William J. Norris, and Dennis Paoli
Starring: Jeffrey Combs, Bruce Abbott, Barbara Crampton, and David Gale

The Plot: Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs) is a young medical student who has recently transferred to Miskatonic University. Dan (Bruce Abbott) is a lovable young everyman who attends the same university and is studying to become an MD himself. He also has a girlfriend named Megan (Barbra Crampton) who he desperately loves, but she is the dean’s daughter and they are both waiting until graduation before contemplating marriage. When Dan puts out an advertisement for a new roommate, the last person he expects to take him up on this offer is the awkward new kid Herbert West. Yet, Herbert and Dan hit it off fairly well. Although Megan isn’t a big fan of West, the situation seems to be working out. That is until Dan finds out about Herbert Wests’ research. West believes that he can beat “brain death,” and he has a green solution that is supposed to help him get that job done. Unfortunately, as Dan gets roped into this quest to stop death, the two find themselves dealing with reanimated bodies that are becoming ruthlessly violent and powerful. With each experiment the two find themselves getting deeper and deeper into a dark world of trouble, but will they get out of this situation before something truly terrible takes place?

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Exorcist III, The

Posted by Josh Samford On October - 2 - 2012

The Exorcist III (1990)
Director: William Peter Blatty
Writers: William Peter Blatty
Starring: George C. Scott, Brad Douriff, Jason Miller, and Ed Flanders.

The Plot: George C. Scott plays detective Bill Kinderman, a man who is a bit on the cranky side but is easily one of the very best men on the force. He was at one time great friends with priest Damien Karras, the man who helped perform the exorcism in the original The Exorcist, and now every year on the date of Karras’ death, Kinderman meets up with another one of Karras’ friends, Father Dyer (Ed Flanders). These two have a very special relationship, and while they console each other on this day of memorial, the pair have no idea that they will soon be confronted with their former friend’s death all over again. It seems that there is a copycat murderer who leaves all of the same hidden markings of “The Gemini Killer,” an infamous serial killer from the area, and he is killing off anyone who is related to the original exorcism. As Kinderman begins to investigate further, he finds that this road may lead him to some uncomfortable revelations about the fate of his former friend.

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Navajo Joe

Posted by Josh Samford On August - 13 - 2012

Navajo Joe (1966)
Director: Sergio Corbucci
Writers: Fernando Di Leo, Ugo Pirro, and Piero Regnoli
Starring: Burt Reynolds, Aldo Sambrell and Nicoletta Machiavelli

The Plot: Duncan is a ruthless monster who has been working in-between the law for years. He was originally tasked with hunting down Natives who were considered to be outlaws, but eventually his ire was drawn towards any Native American village that he crossed. After ruthlessly massacring another group of Native Americans, Duncan heads into town with the goal of selling off their scalps. However, he finds opposition with the city council who no longer want Duncan’s help. After bullying the citizenry for a bit, Duncan is presented a much more interesting opportunity. A man named Lynne sells out the mayor of his neighboring town and tells Duncan of a train which is supposed to be bringing a substantial grant for this neighboring city. Joe (Burt Reynolds), a very tough Native who has been watching Duncan, quickly catches up with a group of prostitutes who have heard the details behind Lynne and Duncan’s plan. However, will Joe do what is right or is he only out to line his own pockets?

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