Dope Is Death (2020)

With blight ravaging New York City in the 1970s, groups like the Young Lords and Black Panthers fought for radical change in their communities. Through the leadership of Dr. Mutulu Shakur, the stepfather of Tupac, one of the activities of these groups was to create the first acupuncture detoxification program in the United States.

Seen as “radical harm reduction,” this acupuncture program was a revolutionary act toward the government programs that transfixed the lives of black and brown communities throughout the South Bronx.

While the legacy of the program has long been maintained by the residents of the Bronx and Upper Manhattan, those that created it have suffered from decades of state-sanctioned persecution.

Dope is Death explains how the acupuncture clinic rose to prominence and continues in the present day, despite dealing with funding challenges.

Director Mia Donovan has also made Inside Lara Roxx, the story of adult star Lara Roxx, who went from the adult industry to an HIV infection and a psychiatric ward in Montreal all before the movie even begins, and Deprogrammed, which is all about the anti-cult crusade of Ted “Black Lightning” Patrick.

She takes on really interesting stories and somehow makes them even more intriguing through the way that they are made. For this film, she worked with Sofi Langis, who has directed several VICE features and Texas: women and guns, a love story.

At once a history lesson on how groups like the Black Panthers tried to instigate massive and sweeping change while also explaining the heroin epidemic in the South Bronx, Dope Is Death is a frank indictment of how governments use drugs to oppress communities and how their myriad intelligence organizations seek to discredit anyone that attempts to make a difference.

Terror from the Year 5000 (1958)

Originally titled The Girl from 5000 A.D., this movie had a great tagline: “From Time Unborn … A Hideous She-Thing!”

Playing on American-International Pictures double features with The Screaming Skull or The Brain EatersTerror from the Year 5000 was shot in Dade County, Florida and presents a world where scientists attempt to communicate with the future by sending their fraternity keys through time and getting statues and coins in return. One of the scientists, Victor, grows insane attempting to communicate with the future and pays for it with his life. There’s also a mutant cat cadaver, in case you’re into that kind of thing.

The poster for this movie is, quite frankly, way more interesting than the movie its selling. Which, come to think if it, is  how posters should work, right?

Dede Allen, who would one day edit The Hustler, Wonder BoysBonnie and Clyde, Dog Day Afternoon and Reds, started her editing career on this movie.

You can watch this on YouTube.

Her Name Is Cat (1998)

Cat (Almen Wong) is a professional killer falling in love with a policeman named John (Michael Wong). John feels torn between his job, his ex-wife and child, and Cat, whose life is anything but simple.

Clarence Fok, who also made Naked Killer, directed this and to be perfectly frank, he’s making his version of The Killer, but featuring Almen Wong looking stylish as she kills everyone in her way. Also — one of the kills is totally ripped off from The Omen.

You may look at this poster and wonder, “Why is this scene not in the movie?” This is how movie posters should work, creating something that you need to watch just to see that image come to life.

Like kaiju movies, this film has really boring moments of human interaction that serve only to give you time to rest in-between moments of stylized violence. Less people, more bullets, I always exclaim.

Method Man (1979)

Also known as The Fearless Young Boxer and Avenging Boxer, the name of this movie lives on in Wu-Tang Clan member Method Man, who was given that title by their leader the RZA.

It’s directed by Jimmy Shaw, who also directed Fists of Fury 2 and Return of the Tiger. It was written by Ching Kang Yao, whose resume includes scripts for movies like One Armed Swordsman Against Nine KillersFists of Bruce Lee and Secrets of the Chinese Kung-Fu.

While on a fishing trip, Shao Lung (Ji-Lung Chang) watches as his father is murdered by Wu Pa Feng (Casanova Wong). He joins his uncle’s traveling circus where he begins to study the fighting styles that will enable him to one day have revenge.

You’d be forgiven if you thought this was an early Jackie Chan movie, because it certainly wants you to think that it is. That said, Wong is awesome as the killer, making his way through the world to murder a list of fighters and earning the enmity of our hero. If only it didn’t have so much comedy it’d be a much better movie.

You can watch this on YouTube.

Evil Town (1987)

This movie is a mess and I love it. A glorious four director thrown together junkfest that started filming in 1984, as well as containing footage coming from an unfinished Dean Jagger movie made a decade before, God Bless Dr. Shagetz. Then, to spice things up, Gary Graver’s wife — and Fonzie’s girlfriend Lorraine — Jillian Kesner-Graver and Playboy Playmate of the Month for June 1982, Lynda Wiesmeier, show up for the “foreign sales.”

A group of four friends end up in a small town where young people just happen to disappear, all because there are some old folks using young folks to become young folks again.

One of the directors of this movie, Mardi Rustam, liked the idea so much that he made his own take on it and that would be Evils of the Night, which may be the better movie and definitely came out two years before this one finally got completed. That said, how many movies have an evil Hope Summers from The Andy Griffith Show?

You can get this from Vinegar Syndrome.

JOIN US THIS SATURDAY AT THE DRIVE-IN ASYLUM DOUBLE FEATURE!

This Saturday night on the Groovy Doom Facebook page, we’re watching two great movies and it all starts at 8 PM East Coast Time. We’re joined by Sean Collier of Pittsburgh Magazine and The Number One Movie In America podcast!

Up first…Joe D’Amato insanity! It’s Antropophagus, which you can get from Severin or watch as The Grim Reaper cut on Tubi.

Here’s a drink to enjoy during the movie. You don’t need to drink and please do so responsibly.

Tasty Baby on a Greek Beach

  • 1 oz. rum
  • 1 oz. Southern Comfort
  • 1 oz. vodka
  • 1 oz. grenadine
  • 2 tbsp. lime juide
  • 1.5 oz. orange juice
  1. Mix and serve over ice.
  2. Watch over your shoulder for Klaus Wortman.

Up next…it’s the non-Jason The Orphan: Friday the 13th, which you can watch on YouTube.

Drunken Monkey God

  • 4 oz. orange juice
  • 2 oz. pineapple juice
  • 3 oz. coconut rum
  • 1 oz. Kraken rum
  • 4-5 dashes bitters
  • Ground nutmeg
  • Maraschino cherries and juice
  • Lime and pineapple (for garnish)
  1. Shake juices, rums and bitters in a shaker with ice for thirty seconds.
  2. Pour into an ice filled glass, then pour in 2 tbsp. of cherry juice.
  3. Garnish with fruit and grab a shotgun.

THE EXCELLENT EIGHTIES: The Cold War Killers (1986)

Based on a series of novels by Anthony Price, this movie was originally part of a six episode ITV series, Chessgame, that was turned into three TV movies: The Alamut Ambush, The Deadly Recruits, and this movie, The Cold War Killers.

Leave it to Mill Creek to drop you into a TV series turned into an edited for time movie with no warning whatsoever.

Terence Stamp, who was one of the villains of my childhood thanks to his turn as General Zod in the Superman movies, stars as David Audley, a Cold War spy exhausted by the secret game he’s been playing against the Russians for decades.

He’s dealing with a missing British bomber, which is found when a small lake is drained to make room for a new housing development. Soon, the simple discovery becomes so much more, as it brings together smuggling, the black market, the KGB, the SS and several murders, all while Audley tries to find love.

Mike Lane, who plays Carmine Longo in this movie, was in several films that fans of our site can appreciate, like StrykerUlysses Against HerculesGrotesqueA Name for EvilFrankenstein 1970 and Demon Keeper. And Eurospy fans should keep an eye out for Carmen Du Sautoy, who was Saida in The Man with the Golden Gun.

Mother Noose Presents: Once Upon a Nightmare (2021)

“This ain’t no Disney fairy tale!”

That’s a pretty bold proclamation for a movie, but Mother Noose Presents: Once Upon a Nightmare isn’t a movie that’s all that interested in subtlety. It’s barely a few moments in when the big bad wolf sprouts an erection and things don’t slow down from there.

Directed by Richard Tanner (Room for RentFrankenthug)*, this film starts when a poor man starts his new job as assistant to an eccentric storyteller living deep in the woods. Her stories  — “Mother Noose and the Assistant” — form the thread of this anthology, with each tale growing darker and more menacing.

The first story, “The Big Bad,” is a retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, with Erin Brown playing that role. You may know her better under her other stage names Sadie Lane and Misty Mundae.

Jon Devlin, who was in Joe Stryker, appears in the best story of the bunch, “A Real Boy,” in which he plays Merrick, an abused wooden boy in a sideshow.

Other tales include “Through the Woods,””Sinderella,” a retelling of — you get it — Cinderella and the extremely dark “Breadcrumbs,” which reinvents the story of Hansel and Gretyl as an abusive marriage and the lengths that a husband would go through to escape it.

While this movie isn’t released yet, you can keep up on it on its official Facebook page. I’m glad that the filmmakers gave us an early look at it. If you love low budget anthologies and would fun with a more gory and ribald take on children’s fairy tales, then this is the movie for you.

*IMDB also lists Dan Beck as the director of “A Real Boy” and Eric E. Bow as the director of “Through the Woods.”

B-MOVIE BLAST: My Tutor (1983)

Bobby Chrystal (Matt Lattanzi, who was in Xanadu where he met his one-time wife Olivia Newton-John) might never graduate high school thanks to his poor French scores. But this being a 1983 movie, all he cares about is losing his virginity, just like his buddies Billy and Jack (a practically all hormone Crispin Hellion Glover).

To help him improve his French, Mr. Chrystal (Invasion of the Body Snatchers star Kevin McCarthy) hires Terry Green (Caren Kaye, who played Jason Bateman’s mom on the one season NBC sitcom It’s Your Move) to teach his son. Well, she sure does, starting with him perving her while she skinny dips in their pool and ending with the predictable motion of the oryctérope.

Of course, dad wanted Terry all for himself and tells his son that she only was there to teach him, with a $10,000 bonus if he passes. He calls her a prostitute, because that’s what being a young incel is all about, before realizing that she taught him so much. Now, he has the ability to ask out his crush Bonnie.

Katt Shea, who would go on to direct both Stripped to Kill movies, as well as Poison Ivy and The Rage: Carrie 2, is in this as a mud wrestler. So are Shelley Taylor Morgan (Malibu Express), Jewel Shepherd (Zapped!Hollywood Hot Tubs 2: Educating Crystal), Jacqueline Jacobs (who is in pretty much every Crown International winner like Malibu BeachThe Van, The Beach Girls, Weekend PassThe Patriot and Hunk) and Kitten Natividad (Night Patrol, Beneath the Valley of the Ultravixens). If I have to explain to you why any of these women appeared in this movie, you haven’t watched enough 1980’s teen sex comedies.

You can watch this on Tubi.

Le Gladiatrici (1963)

With the Italian title meaning The Female Gladiators, this film was released here as Thor and the Amazon Women. It’s actually a sequel to Taur the Mighty, but I think you’ll be fine with just watching it without seeing that movie.

It comes from Antonio Leonviola, the man who made Atlas in the Land of the Cyclops and Mole Men Against the Son of Hercules.

A civilization of women warriors, lorded over by the evil Black Queen (Janine Hendry, Taur the Mighty) has been decimating the men of their country. Soon, they come up against Tamar (Susy Andersen, Black Sabbath), who is the daughter of a great warrior who teams with Thor (Joe Robinson, who was Taur in that aforementioned movie and I guess may be that character again. Perhaps not. Is it more confusing if Tamar is the daughter of Taur and Robinson is just playing a whole different role? Ah man…), Ubaratutu (Harry Baird, The Four of the Apocalypse) and her younger brother Homolke.

Nera the Black Queen like two things: her cat and gladiator battles between captive women. She must be Italian, because this is one of the prized tropes of my ancestral forebearers. One of the captives, Ghebel (Carla Foscari, Mole Men Against the Sons of Hercules), tells the evil leader about Thor, a strongman who prophecy claims will end the Black One’s evil kingdom. Tamar ends up getting kidnapped and turned into one of the gladiators.

Luckily, the captain of the guard opposes the queen is ready to help our heroes. She tries to lead an uprising but is killed and the Queen orders Tamar and Ghebel to fight to the death. Just then, the rest of our heroes attack. Tamar ends up winning the battle and kills both Ghebel and the Black Queen, deposing her rule and putting her brother on the throne, which seems kind of backward to have a little boy leading everyone when Tamar has more than proved herself.

That’s right. A movie about a female empowered society that does all it can to prove to you that a female empowered society is the worst idea ever. What I’m saying is that if you expect a movie that proves the superiority of female leadership, look elsewhere than a 1963 peblum movie.

By the way Thor and Ubaratutu look at one another, I think Tamar would have been better off keeping Nera in power. If you must watch this, you can find it on Tubi.