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]yahoo.com. I'd love to check out what you got.
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Mutant Hunt (1987)
This is another of the Netflix Dump 8, chosen because it has Sgt. Kabukiman, NYPD star Rick Gianasi. I had never seen anything else with him in it, and considering Netflix only had this on Instant, when it was gone I'd lose my chance, so I had to make it happen. It looked like a lot of fun, so we'll see if it was.
Mutant Hunt takes place in a future that looks suspiciously like a run down late-80s New York City. A company is making cyborgs better than the cyborgs before them, but the alien DNA they've tried to fuse them with has turned them into sex-crazed maniacs with melting faces and superhuman strength. This causes one of the scientists working for the company to escape and run to Rick Gianasi, who is a mercenary that the scientist's brother used to know. She tells him the score, and he and his other mercenary friends are on the case. The question is, will they be able to stop them?
This movie is a lot of fun, but it's so low-budget that it's not for everyone. In one scene, a cyborg's arm stretched like Mr. Fantastic to reach for a weapon. There are two ways to go with that: either you think it's "cheesy", or you think it's amazing; and if you're in the former, avoid this movie like the plague; but if you're in the latter, buckle up, because this is a great bad movie night good time. Gianasi is awesome, the cyber-punk outfits were awesome, the not-so-well choreographed fight scenes were awesome, the backing music was awesome-- this thing is pretty much what you're looking for when you see it on the shelves.
We love Rick Gianasi here at the DTVC, to this point only for his work in Sgt. Kabukiman, NYPD. This movie doesn't give him as many intentionally funny moments, but there is a sense that he's having fun with this. I can't imagine what he was thinking as this was shot-- I mean, his first scene involves him fighting off a cyborg in only his tighty-whities. But he has everything you'd want in the cool action lead, from the slick lines, to the well-feathered hair. This character is definitely more together than the one he played in Kabukiman, but you can see here where he might have that comedic talent in him that was so prevalent there.
This kind of movie looks like a lot of fun to make. I'd love to get some people together and find some abandoned buildings and make some costumes out of everyday ordinary stuff, and just throw caution to the wind. The funny thing of course now is that with YouTube every kid with a phone can try their hand at this-- and probably fail miserably. There's something about these more professionally made ones that, no matter how poorly they turn out, have an authenticity to them that transcends the high school kids fooling around for a school project. Silliness be damned, the people involved had a certain amount of professionalism that kids don't have-- and shouldn't have, because they're kids. So, as much fun as a Mutant Hunt might look to make, I know it wouldn't be that much fun if I actually tried to make it. Maybe writing the screenplay is enough...
What do we think of the jumpsuit? Just let me unzip my shirt to take a leak. Sounds great. Her we have our hero wearing one, and, as luck would have it, he has a love scene. Yes, and she unzips his shirt... to get into his pants. Is that not the sexiest thing ever? Of all the great wardrobe moments, and there were many, the jumpsuit love scene had to be my favorite. You've also gotta love the padded car seats used as vests(?) by the corporation leader and his sister. Is this futuristic fashion? Hey, go to Napa and get more costumes.
The director of this film is Tim Kincaid, and Mutant Hunt came in a period in the mid-80s when he tried his hands at real theatrical/direct-to-video movies. What was he doing before and after? I'm glad you asked. In looking him up on imdb to see what else he'd done, I see a bunch of films directed by him under a fake name, with titles like "Men's Room III". Men's Room III? What kind of silly horror movie is that, I wonder. I'm sure you're already ahead of me, but I click on it, and discover, it's gay porn. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with gay porn, I'm saying it's funny that I couldn't have figured that out without clicking on the movie title.
And with that, let's wrap this review up. Mutant Hunt is a really fun time for those who enjoy schlock, low-budget flicks. It has everything you'd want in a so-bad-it's-good gem. You can get this both as a used VHS or as a part of Full Moon's Grindhouse Collection on DVD. It's your call, but I think you'll have fun either way.
For more info: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0093586/