The Starlite

Psychotic '73 !!!

House Of Psychotic Women (1973): Drive-In star (at least in Europe during the 70's) Paul Naschy stars in another convoluted, messed up, and strange-assed film. What is it about the 70's that made everything so freaked out, man? This particular piece of definite Drive-In Trash involves Paul as a drifter heading out in the country after a flashback nightmare of choking this chick that he loved. He comes across three women (check the title of the film) who take him in as a all around handyman. One is in a wheelchair, the other is a nympho and the other is kinda just there. Nympho chick provides a reason for boob shots (quite explicit) and the gore? Well, seems like there's a murderer about and the kills are good-looking chicks who have their eyeballs plucked out. The final moments explain it all (if ya stay awake that long). The European title for this is BLUE EYES OF THE BROKEN DOLL and I'm sure if ya can find this version, it would make a hell of a lot more sense. When I saw the uncut version of DEEP RED, it certainly did. Since I don't see it comin' out anytime soon on DVD (I could be wrong), pick this up and enjoy a slice of the ol' Drive-In madness. Oh yes, another flick with that wonderful cheese, psycho-jazz in the background. I am a freak for that shit!!

Torso (1973): I got to see the old video version of this some time ago and haven't gotten around to watching the new Anchor Bay DVD version which has extra scenes and all the good stuff missing from this print. An early example of Italian Giallo, it seems that the filmmakers were trying to make an American style thriller. The problem? I'm trying to figure out where to place this. It's a whodunit with no real mystery or suspense, a splatter film with minimal gore (like I said - maybe the recent version has better scenes of violence) and a soft-core porn film with lots of boobage and a mild lesbian scene. I mean really mild!! It leaves the viewer feeling that he hasn't seen much of anything. Good college in Rome thing going on with all the hippie fashions and this one chick (Carol - I think her name was) she was freakin' extra gorgeous. They all played up female lead Suzy Kendall (Playboy Playmate?) like she was really something, but she is dirt compared to this chick. Too bad Carol (?) gets it early in the film. Sick and twisted killer stalks her in the woods and strangles her with a scarf and then fondles her breasts as she lies there dead. Dead boobs do not a turn on make. There's some terror and suspense as Suzy is upstairs trapped in a bedroom as her friends are being hack-sawed and she can't do nothin' about it. Deeper bull when a milkman says something about four girls and the killer realizes he forgot one. Blah, blah, blah. Bad dubbing, cool 70's jazz cheese going on although sometimes unappropiate to the scene being seen. If ya can find a video store renting this for $1 or less, go ahead and rent it. If you're a Giallo completist (I am not - barring Argento), you must have this on DVD, as it's uncut and uncensored and widescreen.

Frankenstein '80 (1973): The ol' FRANKENSTEIN story with an Italian flavor. Cool. Super freaked-out psycho jazz on the soundtrack. Camera angles scream Drive-In. In a laboratory, a mad scientist stitches together a monster he calls MOSAICO and brings it to life with a serum stolen from a fellow professor. Strange though, seems like all the monster wants to do is "get busy" if ya know what I mean (and I think ya do). He knocks off a prostitute after getting some and in one of the best scene, he brains this one chick with a human leg bone!! Ha! He also creeps up behind this guy taking a piss and smashes his head against the tiles, splashing the blood all over. Mosaico generally makes a nuisance of himself and has to be taken out in the end when he attacks the scientists daughter trying to slice off a piece of pie. Super cool movie being in that so-bad-it's-good category. And remember, 70's freak Jazz that'll stay with you a long time.

Capsule reviews by Zen Eric.


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