Thursday, August 11, 2011

Blackenstein (1973)

Director: William A. Levey

Starring: John Hart, Ivory Stone, Joe De Sue, Roosevelt Jackson, Andrea King

More info: IMDb

Tagline: To Stop This Mutha Takes One Bad Brutha

Plot: Eddie is a Vietnam veteran who loses his arms and legs when he steps on a land mine, but a brilliant surgeon is able to attach new limbs. Unfortunately an insanely jealous assistant (who has fallen in love with Eddie's fiance) switches Eddie's DNA injections, transforming him into a gigantic killer.

My rating: 3/10

Will I watch it again? NOOOOOOOO!

Tomorrow night the gang's coming over to watch BLACULA (1972) and since I recently watched ABBY (1974) (aka THE BLAXORCIST) it seemed like a good idea to get BLACKENSTEIN out of the way. Well, it seemed like a good idea at the time. Not even a small group drinking and raggin' on it can save this picture. Oh, sure, you'll be OK for the first twenty minutes, cracking jokes and marveling at some of the worst, repetitive dialogue you'll ever hear and the looooooong shots following a character cross the room, yard, driveway, etc. That's all fine and dandy when you've only invested a few minutes laughing with your friends. happens.

The monster FINALLY starts to wreak havoc on the locals halfway through the movie. Does that mean it gets better? Yes but barely. It still takes Blackenstein A FULL MINUTE (1 minute = 60 seconds!) to go from one side of the lab to the other! He's just walking!!! FOR 60 FUCKING SECONDS!!!

It gets better. After each night of killing, he makes his way back home without being discovered. The next night he crosses the lab AGAIN but this time his girlfriend is asleep, resting her head on the table. Another minute is killed. It's dumb shit like that that pads this thing for an hour and a half. There are a few kills that are decent (one was really nice we see in shadow as Blackenstein rips off a victims arm!) but there's not much gore and very little nudity (these kinds of things help in flicks like this, you know).

ABBY was fantastic, and I remember BLACULA being pretty good (I'll find out again tomorrow night) but BLACKENSTEIN's got to go. The castle was great, the original FRANKENSTEIN (1931) lab equipment was great (see how they use the lighting to create shadows making it look like they've got more shit in the room than they had? That's a really good idea) but the script was minimal and the scant amount of blood and boobs make this one easy to pass up.

It's not worth the suffering. Alcohol can only help so much. You don't want to see this. Despite a fantastic title, not much was done with what little they had, which is a shame because this has the potential of being a great exploitation classic but someone blew it.

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