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.


Saturday, May 12, 2007

Uncle Sam (1997)

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I think I saw this film with some friends the same night we rented Jack Frost. Or maybe we saw the trailer for it on the video that had Jack Frost, and we rented it later. I don't remember, and I'm not sure it's all that important anyway.

Uncle Sam is about a guy killed in Desert Storm who sits in a coffin in his sister's house for a while before his charred body is resurrected and he dons an Uncle Sam costume and kills everyone that's not patriotic. This film also has Isaac Hayes and the guy who does G.W. impersonations, which is interesting, because I didn't know the guy existed before G.W. was elected in 2000. Anyway, there's a big Fourth of July cookout, and Uncle Sam, who's already killed quite a few people, has plans to do away with a lot more then. Isaac Hayes won't let that happen, nor a kid who's related to the soldier (I can't remember if he was the son or nephew. It doesn't really matter). They blow the bastard up.

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This movie was disturbingly bad. I like bad horror as much as the next guy, but this fell smack dab in the category of depraved, and I couldn't get behind that. Most distressing was some kid who was scarred with burns on his body, rendered blind, and confined to a wheel chair after a bad fireworks accident. It took a silly horror movie and made it darker than it needed to be. The people who make these films need to understand that you can't have it both ways: it's either silly or dark. When you've got a guy in a silly Uncle Sam costume killing people, you can't have a hideously scarred boy in a wheel chair.

My buddy liked this. I'm not sure I really get why. He liked it more than Jack Frost, which was pure silly, and silly done right. I'm assuming he loved it for how horribly bad it was; a bad that made me hate it. A bad that makes me sick to my stomach as I describe it to you.

We were all shocked to see this had the guy who does Bush impressions. You know the guy I'm talking about. He did that show the guys that made South Park used to have. He looks just like G.W. I've never seen him in anything other than when he's impersonating Bush, and even crazier, this film came out before Bush was elected, so it's not like he was playing on any fame from doing Bush. It was just another strange wrinkle in a totally odd movie.

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I think the film makers were trying to make a point about the way a family deals with a soldier going away to war and dying. There's no killing by Uncle Sam for the first 45 minutes because of this. I think it's a very important issue, one that's even more relevant today; but I'm not sure a campy yet depraved horror film with a guy dressed as Uncle Sam killing people is the right venue to raise that issue. It just adds to the overall "huh?" factor of this film for me, and makes me all the more ill in trying to fathom what was going on in it.

I'm getting a headache, so I better wrap this up. Don't go near this. Don't rent it, don't watch it for free, don't have it on while you're doing something else. If your options are watching this, or staring at a wall for 90 min, start staring. This was hardcore.

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  1. Man, this blog is really right up my alley. My friends from high school and I used to get together ritualistically and watch DTV scholck (solely to make fun of it a la MST3k). Uncle Sam is one of those bizarre horror movies that really sticks out in my mind. You know you're in for a real trip when you rent a DTV horror movie with a hologram on the cover (another interesting parallel between this movie and Jack Frost, which I agree was a vastly better campy horror movie).

  2. I'm glad you dig the blog. I'm hoping to have 100 movies reviewed by the end of next week. It's interesting, because usually as I write these reviews I have fond memories of me and my buddies watching them, but with Uncle Sam, it was just PAIN! (They should've had Mr. T on the cover saying "My prediction for this movie: PAIN!")