Phantom of the Ritz (1988)

This was actually a pretty rare opportunity for me, I often cover obscure and somewhat forgotten movies, but it’s VERY rare that I cover a film thats been forgotten so much so that it has an almost non existent online presence. I could find almost NOTHING on this movie in terms of interesting facts or trivia. I couldnt even honestly prove that this thing ever played in theaters.

The only thing I could confirm is that it got a US and UK vhs release and then after that it literally fell through the cracks of history and dissapeared seemingly forever. it currently has 78 ratings on IMDB. I think the only film i’ve ever covered with lower scores than that is “Riverbend” and even that now has risen to 118 ratings since I first covered it. I guess…what im trying to say is, this film is LONG forgotten and VERY unlikely to get a re-release. and I think thats kind of a shame, this isnt a fundamentally bad movie…it IS bad…but WAY worse have managed a dvd AND bluray release…so…if any distribution labels are reading this, maybe take a look at “Phantom of the Ritz” it’s a kinda sorta, not so bad movie thats pretty rubbish.

I love this poster work too….I mean, it says NOTHING about the actual film…but it does it with such a level of STYLE!

Tough and Deadly (1995)

So, as part of our 5th Anniversairy celebrations i’d made the decision well in advance that I wanted to try and steep a more than decent chunk of this season in references and call backs to things i’d mentioned in the past. is it self indulgent? absolutely. But given im very unlikely to make 10 years on this platform under the current format, I have to take what moments I can as and when they appear!

I knew I wanted to cover some of the usuals, an “American Ninja Movie”, my continued slog through “Best of the Best”. I absolutely wanted to revisit “The Dragon Lives Again” but I’d always remembered that in the past I’d sworn i’d cover “Tough and Deadly” and given that was nearly 5 years ago and that it still hadnt happened. I absolutely thought this had to be righted.

In many ways; I wasnt entirely won over by this one, despite what good it does do. frustratingly the experience of covering this one was somewhat tarnished by events that happened around the time of publication; Y’see, I owned this movie on a ‘double feature’ set with another Billy Blanks movie “Talons of the Eagle” and literally the same week that this movie review went live, “Talons of the Eagle” got announced as having a frankly Stunning Bluray release by Vinegar Syndrome…Which did somewhat take the wind out of my sails for this one on release day.

Still! it’s a fun movie! and while I dont think i’d be exactly ecstatic to recommend it, i’d say it’s worth checking out at least once!

That poster says LITERALLY nothing about the film. LITERALLY nothing.

Cannibal Girls (1973)

So I’d been talking to Seth from “The Hellbound Horror Show” for a number of months on the possibility of collaborating on something in the near future. Seths been a champion of the channel now for quite some time and I really love what he does too, but it was finding JUST the right kind of flick that overlapped our styles just about right, and eventually we settled on a Cannibal double feature! We would do “Cannibal Girls” over on my channel and “Cannibal Women in the Avacado Jungle of Death” over on his channel at some point (TBA)

I had an absolute blast doing this with Seth and I really hope we can get it all together again in future! While the death of Ivan Reitman was incredibly unexpected and unfortunately well AFTER we’d already shot and recorded everything for this episode, I still tried to at least pay something of a tribute to the man himself with the opening memorial card.

Cannibal Girls is a great movie and I highly recommend you check it out. But dont just take my word for it here, let both me and seth talk you though this absolute slice of insanity!

(Seths youtube channel is available here)

Could you FIND a more perfect example of 70’s splatter horror and gimmicksploitation in one poster. No. no you cant. I rest my case.

Bloody Moon (1981)

In a season of firsts literally 1 week after we did our first Godfrey Ho movie! we’re NOW doing our first Jess Franco movie! and…this was my first ever Franco film many MANY years ago, and having seen a LOT more Franco since then, im inclined to think this is one of his better efforts. Which is a shame because its COMPLETELY out of tone with his other bodies of work.

This is one of those weird movies where Franco wasnt entirely invested in it as a director, so he just does a servicable job of making a horror movie, and it’s fine. its bordering on good even! and compared to his other 6000 movies. Well this is probably one of his best really…but that says more about my opinion on Franco movies than on my opinion of THIS movie.

This is a VERY flawed movie in all honesty. NOT one of the better nasty’s but sometimes it manages to wiggle into “So bad it’s good” terratory with laughable dialogue and kill scenes that make Antropophagus look like Cannibal Holocaust.

I’d say it was worth a watch at least once. but err…yeh, dont expect THAT many more Franco films on the channel…they’re…not my scene.

ICONIC.

The “Never Say Never Again” (1983) Comedy Dining Experience

While our good friend Roger was having an “Eggcellent” time working on “Octopussy” An evil cabal of writers, media personalities and satanists were performing a secret virginal sacrifice to the gods of “Why did this need to exist” in order to restore an ancient evil who’s toupee contained within its woven fabrics untold horrors that had been sealed successfully away in 1972.

They succeeded and Randy Grampa was resurrected to unleash more terror and casual sexism upon the unsuspecting crowd of 1980’s New Wave hipsters who…quite rightfully dismissed and disowned the film as the utter work of evil that it is.

This week, Dan and Ben take one for the team…in more ways than one. Still! we get some good stories out during the commentary, so it wasnt all to waste its just…ugh…Im really not a Connery fan. The guy had like…2…maybe 3 good bond movies…the rest…ugh.

UGH.

The Ninja Sqaud (1986)

I cant believe it took almost 5 years to get onto a Godfrey Ho movie! Since this review was published I have been made aware that I’ve covered a couple of movies that Ho was *rumoured* to have worked on and in one case a film he was responsible for supervising distribution in the west for.

But this is the first out and out indisputable Ho movie to come through the doors of TYTD towers and, while all the Ho tropes are here, it’s…not exactly his best known work. it’s a fine enough movie. I just dont really think it delivers the full Ho clout that say “Ninja Terminator” would.

That being said! I do hope to cover more Ho in future! going so far as to pick up Gold Ninja Videos “Ninja Vortex” set so that I can really bring out the best of Ho in future!

Really; thats one of the only problems with doing this channel on a weekly basis, given how long it takes to write, record and edit each episode I can only really produce 1 maybe 2 videos a week tops (and im stretched at that!) I also have a MASSIVE pile of martial arts movies to go through even with the 7 movie Ho pack out of the equation! I just wish I had more time to put to the channel honestly as some of these martial arts movies have been in my collection “to watch” since before I even STARTED doing reviews…anyway! Godfrey Ho! pink ninjas! its all good! give it a watch!

This poster says NOTHING about the movie. and because all the colours are kind of on the same side of the colour wheel it doesnt really make anything stand out. it just looks like a load of variations of red splatted on the poster. needs more distinction.

The Brain (1988)

1988’s “The Brain” was a bit of a fringe film for me…What I mean by that is that it had almost always been on my radar, but it was always just one of those films that I thought i’d get round to eventually, but never actually GOT to.

I had no idea of what the actual plot was, I just knew that it involved a giant Psychic/Telekinetik testicle that floated about causing trouble. Outside of that, it could have been about anything. I realise having just written that last sentence that that pitch sounds like something i’d almost certainly be into. but at the time I had bigger fish to fry and it was always just one of those “reserve” titles I could pull out if I was having a string of solid or awful movies to try and upset the balance a bit.

That is until I began chatting to Trivial Theater. A rather lovely lady who’s been supporting the channel now for a while and seems to know her onions! Last christmas we sent each other a gift box filled with odds and ends from the US and UK respectively. apart from me discovering the absolute joys of “Gremlin bars” Triv sent a handful of movies over as well, and “The Brain” was one of those films. I saw it as a sign.

So! by way of thanks! I said i’d cover “The Brain” as it just felt like a “right movie at the right time” kind of thing. and…welp! it’s…an experience! love it or hate it, you wont be forgetting “The Brain” anytime soon

The Poster is positively Cronenberg-esq. but it’s terrible in terms of colour use because you can bearly make out what “the brain” actually is. I personally would have used more Blues just as background filler to help distiguish him from the space backdrop.

The American Ninja 4: The Annihilation (1990)

As part of the 2nd half of our 5th anniversairy celebrations, im going to be dipping into the vaults to cover some movies that, in the past, i’d promised to get round to at some point. and kicking this off we’re finally putting a lid on “The American Ninja” series. I’ve been covering the sequels now for almost as long as the channels been in existence. and with the exception of the first film (which I intend to do a ‘Comedy Dining Experience’ on at some point in the future) we’ve finally arrived at the final chapter here. and WHAT a dissapointing wind down it was.

Im not going to say much more because, honestly, my review here says all there is to say. But I will say that I still find it frankly ASTOUNDING that they had two decently sized action stars in this film and they utilised them in probably the most cack handed way it’s possible to handle these things. I left BEYOND dissapointed. but yeh! after 5 years! we’re bringing this series to a close!

I really like this poster, its such a shame it’s in NO way reflective of the film itself.