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, July 12, 2007

Amanda and the Alien (1995)

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I first caught this film late at night on Showtime or something. I saw that it had Stacy Keach, which intrigued me. I later found out (from watching it) that it also had Michael Dorn, who is one of my favorite actors.

Amanda and the Alien has Nicole Eggert in the title role of Amanda, an artist or something, that befriends an alien. The alien eats people, becomes the person it eats, then eats another and becomes that person. The alien, as a chick, has sex with a dude Eggert's been hooking up with, then eats him, becomes him, and Eggert falls in love with him. She protects him from Dorn and Keach, who are working for the government to stop the alien. The film also has John Diehl of Miami Vice fame.

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I think this film was supposed to be a comedy or off-beat or something. Instead, it was none of that, and I had trouble figuring out who I should root for. An alien that eats people and masquerades as them to eat more, is a pretty scary thought, and I'm not interested in a Nicole Eggert trying to protect said alien because she's a weirdo. Dorn and Keach were painted as bad guys, but they should've been protagonists.

In terms of the Eggert factor, this may be one of her hottest films. I think she's better looking in this than Baywatch, Charles in Charge, or Blown Away with the Coreys. Also, a woman named Alex Meneses played the alien pre-boyfriend eating, and she was hot too, especially when Eggert was trying to fit her into a too-small bra. It's too bad she didn't have a better agent so she could've stayed in the film longer, especially since she turned into Eggert's boyfriend.

Michael Dorn is great in this, and would've been even better if this had a better script. In one scene, he goes to a pretentious coffee shop and smashes a dude's acoustic guitar. He not only should've been the hero, but he should be in more films as the hero. When he's eaten by the alien near the end of the film, it's very disappointing. He becomes Eggert's cohert, as opposed to vanquishing the alien and prevailing with Keach, which I wanted.

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You may notice that this film came out in 1995, at the height of the Morphing Craze. Movies were using this new computer generated special effect as frequently as humanly possible, and this film was no exception. The alien, before eating someone, would morph into some small insect-like thing, then wrap it's tongue or something around the next victim and go inside the person. I'm not sure where all the mass of the person goes when the morph happens, or whatever, but the whole thing just looked silly, and given how dumb this movie was, it wasn't a good silly.

Unless your a Dorn completist, avoid this film. It's not even worth the time spent to watch it for free. Eggert's hot, but I'm not sure it's worth it, even for that.

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