The Direct to Video Connoisseur

I'm a huge fan of action, horror, sci-fi, and comedy, especially of the Direct to Video variety. In this blog I review some of my favorites and not so favorites, and encourage people to comment and add to the discussion. If you click on an image, it will take you to that post's image page, which includes many more pics from the film and other goodies I couldn't fit in the actual review. For announcements and updates, don't forget to Follow us on Twitter and Like our Facebook page. If you're the director, producer, distributor, etc. of a low-budget feature length film and you'd like to send me a copy to review, you can contact me at dtvconnoisseur[at] I'd love to check out what you got.



Hi everyone, it's been a while since I checked the page, and I wanted to make a few announcements.

First and foremost, it appears a dubious site has claimed the old url, meaning any link in any review that goes to the old mattmovieguy url is corrupt. I'm in the process of trying to remove them all, but it's a lot! It's best not to click on any link without hovering over it first to make sure it doesn't have mattmovieguy in the url.

Second, it appears since my last trip to the blog, Photobucket has decided to charge for third party hosting, meaning none of my images are appearing anymore. That's simply an aesthetic issue, but still annoying.

Thank you all for your patience, and again, hopefully this will all be fixed soon.


Thursday, May 3, 2007

Ski School 2 (1995)

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In high school, the first Ski School was one of our staple movies. There wasn't much better than it. And with that in mind, I rented Ski School 2 while I was home during a break in college. I put it on on the TV in the living room, while my mom was reading a book, and my 9-year-old brother was doing whatever. First scene, out of the gate: a woman wearing only a tool belt, hard hat, and panties. Big boobs, too. My mom looked up from her book and said "Um, no."

And believe me, the movie is that great. Dave Marshak, our hero in the first one (played Dean Cameron by the guy who was into horror movies in Summer School), returns to win his woman back before she makes a big mistake and marries a real dork: a big dork who of course is only marrying her to take over the ski resort and make it Evil. You already know the story; it's about all the other madcap romps that make a movie like this work. And this one does.


This isn't as good as Ski School one, but it's close. There's a great scene at a lesbian S&M bar. Marshak, our hero, takes over and starts serving drinks. In another great scene he crashes some pre-wedding party and has everyone do the chicken dance. There's also no perfunctory competition at the end: it's about Marshak proving to his girl that the guy she's going to marry is bad news. We're really rooting for Marshak, because he's just so awesome.

If I had one complaint, though, it was the heel. He wasn't anywhere near as cool as the one in the first movie. That guy was this asshole who did everything perfect and made everyone want to hate him. This one's an anal retentive moron who looks slightly better than, but is essentially the same person as, Jeremy Piven in Old School. It's kind of a cool take, because this guy's no match for Marshak, and in a twist on other films from the genre, the woman in question actually feels bad for her man because of what Marshak does... as if he's the bad guy. Just the same, give me the detestable one-dimensional heel anytime: it just plays better.


Now I read something on imdb that's distressed me a tad. "This is my favourite film, so imagine how disturbed I was when I picked this up on DVD and discovered the awesome soundtrack had been changed!" ( Whoa, hold on a second there. If that's true, then avoid the DVD version at all costs. I didn't really have a big problem when Lucas messed with the Star Wars movies, because they're not a big deal to me. But don't go fucking with Ski Schools 1 and 2. They were perfect as they were. That just upsets me. That being said, the one I got from Netflix was cool, so you shouldn't have to worry there.


So bottom line: see this and the first one before you die. What's great about them is that you can see 2 without seeing 1 first, and still enjoy it as much. I must, however, strongly advise aginst the Lucas-ized DVD version. I haven't looked into this myself, but the guy on the comment board seemed very reliable: "I could model my life on the teachings of Dave Marshack - in fact, his name was on my fake id up until i could drink legally." (ibid.). So get your hands on the VHS of this however you can. You won't be disappointed.

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