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Frank's Movie Log

My life at the movies.

  1. 15 May 2024

    Lucifer's Women 1974

    D: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Paul Aratow. Starring Larry Hankin, Jane Brunel-Cohen, Norman Pierce, and Paul Thomas.

    I watched Lucifer’s Women after seeing the trailer during Alamo Drafthouse’s Railway to Hell marathon. The trailer paints it as a satanic shocker, but it proves more of a sleazy riff on the Svengali story. Continue reading...

  2. 27 Apr 2024

    Beyond the Door III 1989

    B-: 3.5 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Jeff Kwitny. Starring Mary Kohnert, Bo Svenson, Victoria Zinny, and Savina Gersak.

    Bonkers in the best way possible. Continue reading...

  3. 27 Apr 2024

    The Midnight Meat Train 2008

    D: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Ryûhei Kitamura. Starring Bradley Cooper, Leslie Bibb, Brooke Shields, and Vinnie Jones.

    Sometimes, frustrating films are worse than bad ones. Such is the case with The Midnight Meat Train. Continue reading...

  4. 27 Apr 2024

    Horror Express 1972

    D+: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Eugenio Martín. Starring Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Alberto de Mendoza, and Telly Savalas.

    Horror Express may be flawed, but the production, performances, and novelty of genre icons Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee working as allies make it hard to resist. Continue reading...

  5. 27 Apr 2024

    Night Train to Terror 1985

    C: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by John Carr, Phillip Marshak, Tom McGowan, Jay Schlossberg-Cohen, and Gregg G. Tallas. Starring Barbara Wyler, Jamie Scoggin, Stacey Lyons, and Linda Maderas.

    For an anthology comprising three unrelated low-budget horror features cut to half or a third of their running time and book-ended by God and Satan riding a train to Las Vegas with an 80s teen pop-rock band, Night Train to Terror is better than you’d expect. Continue reading...

  6. 24 Apr 2024

    Human Lanterns 1982

    C: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Chung Sun. Starring Tony Liu, Kuan Tai Chen, Lieh Lo, and Ni Tien.

    Human Lanterns may not be a great martial arts movie or a great horror movie, but it proves an intriguing bridge for Shaw Brothers productions. A transitional piece between the straightforward kung-fu actioners like The Five Deadly Venoms that launched the studio to worldwide recognition, and the more overt horrors like The Boxer’s Omen that saw the studio trying to adjust to changing audience tastes. Continue reading...

  7. 24 Apr 2024

    Ninja in the Dragon's Den 1982

    B: 4 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Corey Yuen. Starring Hiroyuki Sanada, Conan Lee, Jeong-lee Hwang, and Kaname Tsushima.

    The overarching plot of Ninja in the Dragon’s Den concerns a rogue ninja, played Hiroyuki Sanada, who travels to China seeking vengeance, but finds his target protected by a hot-shot young kung-fu master played by Conan Lee. But tight plotting is not the film’s strong suit, it’s bone-crunching stunts and action sequences. Continue reading...

  8. 13 Apr 2024

    Mandy 2018

    A+: 5 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Panos Cosmatos. Starring Nicolas Cage, Andrea Riseborough, Linus Roache, and Ned Dennehy.

    Saying Mandy is about a man who exacts revenge on the Manson-like cult that murdered his girlfriend is like saying Kill Bill is about a woman exacting revenge on her boss after he kills her husband. Explaining the plot provides no sense of the viewing experience. Continue reading...

  9. 10 Apr 2024

    City of the Living Dead 1980

    B+: 4 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Lucio Fulci. Starring Christopher George, Catriona MacColl, Carlo De Mejo, and Antonella Interlenghi.

    Director Lucio Fulci’s gory, surreal horror sees a medium and a reporter travel to the remote New England village of Dunwich to stop an undead priest named Father Thomas from opening the gates to Hell. Continue reading...

  10. 29 Feb 2024

    Frankenhooker 1990

    B-: 3.5 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Frank Henenlotter. Starring James Lorinz, Joanne Ritchie, Patty Mullen, and J.J. Clark.

    Don’t let the title fool you. Director and co-writer Frank Henenlotter’s story of a man’s misguided attempt to reanimate his deceased fiancée by attaching her severed head to a sex worker’s body sports a surprising streak of feminist and trans-positive satire beneath its gory black comedy. Spoilers follow. Continue reading...

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