Massacre in Dinosaur Valley (1985)

First off, there are no dinosaurs in this movie. There is, however, plenty of happy go lucky island music, a large amount of nudity, cannibals and gore. It’s also called Cannibal Ferox 2, but isn’t this a better title?

Michael Sopkiw, the star of 2019: After the Fall of New York, plays an American paleontologist who likes to fight, fuck and find archaeology. He somehow cons his way into a professor’s voyage to the green inferno that is Dinosaur Valley. Along for the ride? A Vietnam vet and his housewife, a fashion photographer and plenty of hot models. Holy shit, this cannot go well.

Directed by Michele Massimo Tarantini, written by an uncredited Dardano Sacchetti and featuring music recycled from Blastfighter, this movie is everything I love in movies. It rips off the high heel cutting scene from Romancing the Stone. It’s wildly uneven in tone, going from comedy to horror in the same scene. There’s a lesbian rape scene, subverting notions while fully being pure exploitation. Honestly, all this movie is missing is a “based on a true story” tag at the beginning.

This is a movie that delivers everything that it promises. Well, except dinosaurs. There are a lot of escapes from cannibals. And lots of sweet, sweet lovemaking, Sopkiw style. That’s how you can tell I’m not an 80’s action star. When I’m getting chased by cannibals, I don’t stop to make whoopie inside the footprint of a dinosaur. There’s some slavery too that our hero and heroines need to deal with if they want to get out of Dinosaur Valley alive.

There’s one way out — give yourself up to a lesbian slave owner. That doesn’t work too well, though, as the heroine who tries that gets shot in the back. And then that dude, China, who runs the slaves? He rapes the other heroine before Sopkiw saves her and makes a joke about the mile high club as a helicopter rescues them. Dude. I guess comedy equals tragedy plus time, but maybe wait a little before making with the funny. At least until we get out of Dinosaur Valley, right? Also, China looks like an indy wrestling promoter.

88 Films re-released this last year, which is good, as the Shriek Show DVD goes for around $85 on Amazon. You can grab it at Diabolik DVD.

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