Thursday, April 30, 2009

Coming Soon From Code Red

According to IMDB Code Red has gained the rights to some great cult films. The wealth of trailers on most of their discs also paints a nice portrait of this company's future in the DVD market. Code Red's DVDs have ranged from Great, (The Unseen, Can I Do It... Till I Need Glasses, The Dead Pit, and Running Hot) to the very lousy, (Chi sei?, Hot Moves and A Day at the Beach). Consumers of B-movies DVDs need to be aware that a company is actually looking out for their interests. Collectors are getting sick and tired of paying high prices for twenty year old VHS tapes and then three months later that title surfaces on a disc.

Here is a definitive list of the great cult titles to be on the lookout for:

Messiah of Evil: (1973) This film was featured in Stephen Thrower's book, Nightmare U.S.A. Thrower describes in great detail the process of making this film and he includes interviews with some of the participants. Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz had a very successful career after this film wrapped up. They became George Lucas's screenwriters for several films. They penned such classics as American Graffiti and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Then the writing team really screwed up with Howard the Duck. Code Red is presenting this film for the first time in a director approved version. This will also be the first time this film is available in a non-bootleg version. The film is an artistically done zombie tale that should delight fans of this genre when it is finally released.

Family Honor: (1973) This is a nice big slice of a mafia style Grindhouse, that became popular after the release of The Godfather. This film was never on VHS. It stars Charles Guardino (Killer Fish) and singer Meatloaf, (Fight Club).

Who?: (1973) This film was released on video as Robo Man. Elliot Gould, (A Bridge Too Far, M.A.S.H) stars in this mix of mystery and science fiction. An American scientist is severely injured in a car accident in East Germany. The doctors in Germany improve his body by turning him into a cyborg. When he returns to America the F.B.I believes he is a spy from Germany and that is when the film really starts to take off.

Pets: (1974) "There's an Animal in Every Woman" was one of the film's many taglines. The sexy Candice Rialson, (The Eiger Sanction) stars in this hitchhiker film that manages to leave its audience in shock. Would make a great double feature with another one of their forthcoming titles, Teenage Hitch-hikers (1975).

The Internecine Project: (1974) James Coburn, (Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid) plays a former secret agent promoted to government advisor. He has a past full of dark secrets that he must keep hidden. He sets up a ingenious plan to keep his future safe. Glad to see some of Coburn's lesser films get the proper DVD treatment. Co-Written by Barry Levinson.

Gang Wars: (1976) Returning to New York from a martial arts competition with an amulet found in a cave a young man unleashes a demon. The demon takes up residence in the subway. The film mixes karate films with horror and that is enough to excite fans of both genres.

Mean Johnny Barrows: (1976) Fred "The Hammer" Williamson stars and directs this film. The film is about an ex- G.I that starts to work at a gas station. At the gas station he is discovered by a local mafia boss and gets caught in the cross-fire of two rival families. Roddy McDowall, (How Green Was My Valley) and Elliot Gould as Professor Theodore Rasputin Waterhouse (What a name.) co-star in this underrated action flick. An interview with Fred Williamson has been recorded for this DVD release.

The Farmer: (1977) This is one trailer Code Red has shown on a vast majority of their releases. The trailer literally takes us through the grimy fall of its main character. The grainy picture reminds one of the classic genre of revenge films from the seventies. Gary Conway plays a retired war vet that is pushed over the edge. He wants a chance to start a farm and new life with his wife. When the going gets tough he starts working for a local mob boss and that is the start of a bloody dispute. The film was almost rated X for the depiction of violence. Columbia Pictures ignored this film after its very limited release. Not sure what type of film they thought they had because in the trailer they compare it to Five Easy Pieces, and Taxi Driver. Code Red really should put this film out very soon.
Stunt Rock: (1978) According to Code Red we can expect a loaded two-disc version of this film in August. This is basically a bunch of magic and stunts revolving around a rock band called Sorcery. This Australian film lacks a cohesive plot but provides many thrills. The film is loud, disorientating and in your face.

Jokes My Folks Never Told Me: (1978) This film is in the tradition of films like, If You Don't Stop Soon I'll Go Blind and Kentucky Fried Movie. This is a rarely seen sketch comedy film filled with nudity. They don't make them like this anymore.

Power Play: (1978) This is another trailer that received much exposure from Code Red. Released on home video by Media Home Entertainment. The film takes a provocative look at how a nation can be overthrown by the military. Director Martin Burke has recorded a commentary for the upcoming release. The film is elevated even higher by its A-list cast of Peter O'Toole, (Caligula, Lawrence of Arabia) and Donald Pleasence, (Halloween).

The Visitor: (1979) This is a curio-piece of trash from the vaults. John Huston, (Director of The Maltese Falcon) plays an alien on Earth that must battle a spoiled brat with telekinetic powers. The film managed to get an excellent cast; Glenn Ford, (Superman, Blackboard Jungle) Lance Henriksen, (Aliens) Sam Peckinpah, (Director of The Wild Bunch) Shelley Winters, (A Patch of Blue) and Franco Nero, (Enter the Ninja) as Jesus Christ. The trailer did not have any sound but some creepy music was added to it. With all the talent involved this film really needs to be seen.

Cheerleaders' Wild Weekend: (1979) This film is directed by Jeff Werner, who directed Die Laughing. It stars two cult film superstars, Jason Williams, (Flesh Gordon himself) and Kristine DeBell, (Alice in Wonderland). A school bus full of sexy cheerleaders is hijacked by a group of terrorists. This is an exploitation classic and a release Code Red says to expect this year. An interview with Kristine DeBell has been included for this release.

A few other films they have the rights to include, Teenage Graffiti and Teenage Tramp. Information on those two films are scarce.

To Be Continued... Tomorrow, the 80's films coming from Code Red.

1 comment:

  1. The Internecine Project has been one of the best pictures for me in a long time, the plot is so unique, and the cast and performances were amazing.