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Candyman

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Freddy Krueger he is not. What the Candyman actually is and how he works is as big of a mystery as Amelia Earnhardt's disappearance. Nothing makes sense!

What is Candyman? Well we know that he was murdered for the mistake of being born black. Ok, so he comes back as the spirit of racial injustice vengeance? Nope. The person he kills that drives the narrative is an impoverished black woman. Ok. Well what else? They murdered him by covering him in honey and bees stung him to death and he seems to have a real affinity for the buzzy bugs. So is he bees? Maybe, but if he's bees then why isn't other Candymen (yes there are other Candymen as shown in the ending) also bees? Nope. Only he's bees. He also poops bees and actual poop which is pretty weird.

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Dragonheart

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Wherein a dragon saves a terrible person's life and everyone blames the dragon for said terrible person's terribleness. Its a funny old world we lived in back in 984 AD.

So yeah, the plot here is that a oppressive king dies in a moronic manner and his awful Joffreyesque turd of a child becomes king. Before he can reimplement prima nocta, a girl falls onto him; knocking him into a lethal cheese cart. Yes that's right. Before the movie even starts up, the villain has been killed by a cheese cart. So his mentor, Bowen (played by Dennis Quaid) takes him up to a dragon's cave where Draco (Sean Connery) takes a chunk of his heart and stuffs into said brat and revives him, all while making him swear an oath to be a just and kind king. Before the little wanker can make it back to his castle, he's already issued a decree to enslave the people to build a vanity project for him. Bowen, being the perfect judge of character that he is, blames Draco for King Twat's cruelty and vows to hunt him to the ends of the earth.

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The Terror Within

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In a post-apocalyptic world, a group of scientists find a pregnant lady and then the shenanigans ensue. A tea-drinking monster finds its way around their base, operating elevators and smashing speakers like The Who all with the singular objective of lady butt. The terror within, indeed.

Essentially, this is Alien but underground and in a singular location ("singular" twice in as many sentences? take that English 102). Somehow, somewhy monsters called "gargoyles" are around wandering the wasteland. They don't eat people or animals. They just kill men and have their way with the women. Once a lady is impregnanted a new gargoyle comes out and the process repeats. However the host is killed. And because they killed the men, there's no more ladies being born to sustain their species. These things are dumb. Their lifecycle is about 7 days and they have holes in their skin and can't close their jaw. I think the remnants of humanity will be just fine. You just need to wait them out, they'll die out on their own.

So what's fun here? Well, aside from their horrendously terrible rubber suit that the monster actor wears, its mostly the ineptitude of our band of heroes. While I say that humankind will be fine, I will retract that statement if the rest of us are as dumb as the occupants of Mojave Lab. Not to mention these guys are already dead from dehydration before the movie already started. There's no damn water supply! Ok, I'll move on. In one scene, they find themselves in a hall way that has oily rags in a bucket next to barrels that have "explosive" written on it. Of course, you're gonna explode your whole base. Our favorite character is Dr. Linda, who at point blank, tells her patient that all is fine - after being freshly raped and impregnated by a monster.

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Vibes

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Cyndi Lauper has psychic powers. Jeff Goldblum is tall and is Jeff Goldblum. Are they a match made in Hollywood for the 80s? Obviously not. Hope you like everyone being at an 11!

So Vibes is part of this weird genre that only really happened in the 80's. The closest the men in ties will call it is a rom-com, but there's a x-factor with this type of 80's flicks. There's always a BS gimmick such as what we have here - psychic powers. These are more of screwball comedies but with a love interest penciled in because "Oh I guess we have to". So the romance is an afterthought which means that its shouldn't even be a rom-com at all since the rom is so far down on the list of priorities in the writing.

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Beastmaster III - The Eye of Braxus

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Dar reunites with Seth and his home planet in order to save his bro, but screw everyone else. I need a hero, but could I get someone besides this Dar guy?

So if you're a big fan of Dar, well this one isn't for you. It sure exposes Dar to be a cadre of negatives. He's dumb as dirt. He's a bit of a dick. He only thinks with his dick. He doesn't give much of a crap about his friends or the other citizens of his planet. And lastly and most importantly, he's not even a damn Beastmaster. His friends (the lion (who was a tiger before), the hawk and his two ferret pals) refuse to do as he commands but even past that a damn camel bucks him off. The man who controls beasts gets bucked off a dromedary. Inexcusable. Dar sucks in BM:III.

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Terminal Exposure

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If the d-bags from Weekend at Bernie's got involved in a mob murder caper... oh wait that's still Weekend at Bernie's. Ok, well imagine if they go on a butt hunt for 15 minutes too.

Terminal Exposure is classified by some as a sex-romp comedy but I frankly don't see it. Maybe I'm desensitized to boobs at this point but the nudity is fairly mild with only one real sex scene (that ranks up there with the grossest of all - despite Hope Marie Carlton being in it). What this to me is a screwball comedy. Its truly in the same vein as Weekend at Bernie's (but not annoying or painfully tedious) or Dumb and Dumber (which shares many of the same plot elements - maybe Dumb and Dumber is also Weekend at Bernie's).

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Cop and a Half

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A believe it or not commercial success, but working more like a confused mess that doesn't know who they want watching it, Burt Reynolds teams up with a precocious scamp to take down a drug ring - because early 90's.

Talk about 90's stereotypes and whatever rules to life. Of course, the kid doesn't have parents - it's 1993! Of course the cops cave to his demands to be a cop despite being 10 - it's 1993! Of course, Burt Reynolds drives over everyone's yards without consequences - its 1993! Pop Rocks for a drug prop? You betcha its 1993!

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White Tiger

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Knocking off Beverly Hills Cop while showcasing Gary Daniels as a cheaper JCVD but forgetting that he can't act past his gob being open, White Tiger can't figure out what it is or what it should be so it just manages to be mid-90s karate mush.

Why doesn't the movie work or why did I absolutely wish I'd watched something else? Well I'll tell you who's fault it is. It isn't Cary Tagawa. He's fantastic, of course. And he's allowed to go to 11 so it's not director Richard Martin's fault either. It's not even Gary Daniels fault despite his lack of acting, as the big draw is the fight sequences which he co-choreographed with prolific stunt-man Lauro Chartrand. So whose fault is it that White Tiger is a total boring slog of a film?

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Penitentiary

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A film that rips off Justin's novel 35 years before he wrote it. Its a prison film (obs) that gets fast and loose with the rules of early release - time off for punchin' dudes.

Prepare for a short film review.

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Jungleground

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Nobody crosses the bridge between Uptown and Jungleground! Except the dope pushers, of course. Oh, and the cops. Well we gotta give 'em a little action every now and then, right? Oh and the Feds, hookers, delivery companies, truckers and constructions workers. Seems like everyone does actually.

What you've got here is fairly standard fair for a mid-90's DTV action movie with a few standout exceptions. Roddy is, of course, great despite his terrible dialogue in the script. The relationship between Roddy's "Jake" and his fiancé(?), Samantha, is unique in that its just a straight-up good relationship with no getting sidetracked in backstory or conflict between them. Even Samantha takes a few departures away from cliché' by supporting his copping, standing up to sexual harassment and not being a helpless damsel. The film also does one thing very well - it never loses focus. Its "get home, Jake, before they kill your love". No pauses in that goal. Even with the addition of a helpful hooker who just wants to start a new life, Jake always keeps moving forward. He doesn't stop to ponder her struggles or drop her off a a clinic and stay to check on her (in fact he drops her off with some construction workers and steals their truck) nor does Jake try to save Jungleground or its people. He just keeps moving toward Samantha.

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Space Truckers

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Two truckers (an old hat and a young buck) and a waitress manage to defeat an army of the most unstoppable killing machines, which even the Predator wouldn't stand a chance against, using the rules of the space highway. Honk, honk, pew, pew!

What you've got here is a decent stinker but gets bogged down by how awesome it SHOULD be. It's called Space Truckers. That should be enough to make it amazing. Then Stuart Gordon is directing. I'm no huge lover of Gordon and think most of his projects are just ok, but he's competent enough that he could helm a movie called Space Truckers and not make it not amazing. Tack on Dennis Hopper, who is honestly either great or terrible and either would work here. 

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The Forbidden Dance

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Want to save the environment but are only a Brazilian princess? Well, show off your pretend dance craze skills on American Bandstand! So long, climate crisis! The merengue is coming for you.

So what you've got here is a basket of terrible sequences from the minds of Meneham Golen and Greydon Clark. As the pair rushed the film out in just 56 weeks (from concept to release) in order to hedge their bets against Yorum Globus' Lambada (which released on the same day), what was given to the public was exactly what it deserved. See the lambada was no such dance craze as we've been told. It was a made up craze, likely pushed by the Cannon Group boys so that they could sell tickets to, you guessed it, these two movies. You show us evidence of there being a lambada fervor pre-1990 and we'll eat our shoulder-pad shirts. So yeah, suckers, you bought into some baloney dance fad, you get this thinly put together film in return!

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Roar

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Well I guess if you ever wanted to watch a movie where the cast and crew literally get eaten alive by the stars of the movie, well this is that movie. Its horrifying and terrible and likely contributed to the end of the world. I say that without exaggeration.

What Roar is goes beyond anything that Tommy Wiseau, Neil Breen, and M. Knight Shamalyan had ever envisioned for a vanity-piece-gone-awry. There is volumes of material that are all worth reading about for this film, so I'll briefly sum up what you should know. Basically, Tippi Hendren and her husband Noel Marshall hatched an idea to make a film about living in peace with animals that are dangerous but misunderstood. Its about harmony with nature. So what they did was bought a large compound in the California desert and then brought in 150 big cats (and 1 elephant) to live with their family and then shoot a film with the lions, tigers, panthers and jaguars as the stars. Mind you this is all done with Noel and Tippi acting as head trainers, veterinarians and Robert Muldoons of the compound - all without a bit of experience or education on how to do so. So they built a set, hired Jan De Bont as cinematographer and start filming himself and his family getting eaten by their pets. This is hubris to the maximum.

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Bare Knuckles

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He's a real tough guy, but almost everyone he deals with is just a bit tougher, but not tough enough to out tough his toughness. That was until he meets his weekly nemesis, Cat-Man!

So Zach Kane is a character. He's a total loser. He's a washed up boxer that now is a borderline vigilante who can barely make ends meet. While that seems like a fairly cliche character model for a late 70s action movie, there's a nice twist to Kane's character; he believes he's still one tough guy. He's never come to terms with his loserness, either by denial or just complete lack of context. He keeps getting his butt kicked by life and his own decisions but he's oblivious. Imagine Johnny Lawrence in episode 1 of Cobra Kai but never having any sort of redemption.

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Dangerous Men

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Get ready to meet the most righteous dudes of movie villians and the most disappearing of protagonists. John Rad gives us one of the biggest and most glorious of trainwrecks in film. Black Pepper is coming your way, buster!

What you've got here is one of those "hey we found this movie, does anyone wanna finish it?" Filmed in the mid-80s this wasn't released until 2005 with an assist from Drafthouse. Much along the lines of Miami Connection its a masterpiece in bad filmmaking by a nice person and cost everything for failure. Sadly the director, John Rad (or Jahangir Salehi by his true name) had this movie sit on a shelf for 20 years and not have it released to the right audience until it was far too late. John died before this movie could do so. But what a gift to leave the world. Thanks John!

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Conan the Destroyer

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Grace Jones shows up as not Red Sonja in one of the most loathed films from both Schwaz and the beloved Swords and Sorcery genre. I blame Dino....again.

Is it worth $4 to watch this movie? You’ll have to make it to the end of the podcast for that full evaluation. Is it worth watching if you already have access to it? Yes. This was one of my most hated films. For years I’ve called it Conan the Babysitter.

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Looker

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Albert Finney and Susan Day go on a misguided adventure into the dark dealings of a company that... wants to make more effective commercials and light guns? Is Digital Matrix the worst company ever?

There I am, watching this movie, wondering what Sam was thinking by choosing this movie for an episode. Honestly, the first 1/2 of this is pretty solid - mostly because you don't know what is going on in the same way that Albert Finney's Dr. Larry Roberts is stuck in the middle of a murder conspiracy and trying to put the pieces together. Then the second half is you focusing on hoping that the movie explains why the evil corporation does what it does only to learn that you never learn. You're lost in the same way that Roberts is when he's zapped by a light gun.

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Runaway

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That bad guy from Stargrove hatches a diabolical plan to steal all the dubious chips using bug-bots while Tom Selleck's mustache chases tail AND Gene Simmons. Maybe program your robots to only attack your enemies, Gene.

What is Runaway? It falls into this weird pit where you can't really say its a stinker as there is a number of really well done things. Of course, Selleck is great. Gene Simmons is a great villain. Kirstie Alley and Cynthia Rhodes are competent. It looks good. The effects are solid. The "future" world (not sure if its the future as we never have a "Five Years From Now" card) is well crafted. The score is appropriate and subtle. Yet, somehow every bit of good is countered with pure cheesy stink.

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DOA: Dead or Alive

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Another massive video game adaptation comes to us in the form of a fighting game with massive jiggle physics. Somehow they managed to supplement the jiggle with one of the dumbest villain idiot plot we've ever come across.

So let's get the obvious question out of the way - is DOA the movie as jiggly as the game - no. The sexuality in the movie is way toned down - due to trying to reach a mass audience including the sexually conservative Chinese market. Bummer.

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Double Dragon

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Two "brothers" get chased around so that Robert Patrick's hair can capture the second half of the Double Dragon while teaming up with The Hyper-Color Gang. Patrick should have just drank more vodka.

What works best in this movie is everything that didn't work for me in 1994. Everything sucks. The look of the film is vomit. The acting is gut-wrenching. The plot is corny. The action is hammy. The one-liners are a series of eye-ball rolls. Yet somehow, in post-2007, this thing is such an absolute mess of terrible ideas that don't really happen anymore. Most modern movies revolve around just one or two terrible decisions ie. The Great Wall's plot, making the tornado a monster in Hurricane Heist, the dialogue in London has Fallen. This movie is instead a showcase of nothing but terrible ideas and failed concepts that all become awesome now.

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