The Beyond (1981)

Now, this is the Italian stuff I look forward to covering.

After taking on Hercules twice in a row, now I get to return to the warm embrace of Lucio Fulci with his Gates of Hell trilogy. I’ve already knocked out the first chapter, City of the Living Dead, last month. Now it’s time to get to what most would usually list as the best of the trio, The Beyond. So, buckle up and prepare for this week’s dose of B-Movie Enema!

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The Adventures of Hercules (1985)

How do you follow up one bad movie? With another!

Welcome to this week’s new B-Movie Enema article. Last week, I took a look at Luigi Cozzi’s attempt to revive the classic sword and sandal movies starring the Greek demigod in Cannon Films’ Hercules. This week, we’re just going to go ahead and knock out the sequel, 1985’s The Adventures of Hercules. Now, I typically don’t do stuff like this where I just take two random weeks in the course of a month that has no theme and cover a duology, but, frankly, if I don’t do this right now, I never will.

These movies are dreadfully bad and boring, and I struggle to say they are so in a fun way.

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Hercules (1983)

Here’s the first of two more movies I’ve wanted to cover on B-Movie Enema for quite some time – 1983’s Hercules. This is Luigi Cozzi’s update of the 50s and 60s tradition of the Italian sword and sandal movies that ran from 1958 to 1965. You might think that, oh, there were only five or six or so Hercules movies released in that time frame. NO! there were a total of NINETEEN Italian Hercules films starring a handful of various American stars with bodybuilder Steve Reeves being among them.

Yeah, the Italians loved them some Hercules. It kind of makes sense. These movies were almost like comic book style movies. You have a beefy hero, scantily clad (and absolutely gorgeous) women, and high action and adventure. It basically offered something for everyone. They were badly dubbed when brought over here and they were kind of goofy. After all, a few of them would be lampooned on Mystery Science Theater 3000. Still, they were popular enough to continue to be made with multiple movies released each year.

Hercules, the movie character and Italian cinema was so well tied together, I’m honestly shocked that it took 18 years between the last of the Italian produced Hercules movies to this one released by… OH BOY… Yup, this is a Cannon Films flick.

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Killpoint (1984)

Let’s get back into some action stuff and reunite with Leo Fong in Frank Harris’ 1984 action spectacular Killpoint!

This week’s B-Movie Enema article is the second of three new Leo Fong features celebrating this action star this year. Just about five or six weeks ago, I featured Blood Street on the blog, which itself is a sequel to his endlessly enjoyable Low Blow. Later this year, I will take a look at one from the mid 70s. But this week, with Killpoint, we see Fong teamed up with Low Blow co-star Cameron Mitchell as well as director Frank Harris. Here’s hoping we get some of that Low Blow fun feel in this movie too.

Frank Harris only directed films from 1983, Killpoint being his first, to 1990. He was better known for being a camera guy and a cinematographer. In fact, with both this film and 1986’s Low Blow, Harris is pulling down double duty as both director and cinematographer. Outside of those two films, the only other one that immediately jumped out to me on his filmography was as the cinematographer for 1996’s Skyscraper starring Anna Nicole Smith. In television, he worked as cinematographer for several episodes of 2009’s kids’ tokusatsu show Kamen Rider: Dragon Knight. Harris passed away in April 2020 at the age of 76.

Okay, But now, let’s talk about Cameron Mitchell…

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Alien from L.A. (1988)

From Bill Rebane last week to Albert Pyun this week.

Welcome to another B-Movie Enema article – the 328th if we’re counting, and… I do. This week, we’re going back to good ol’ Cannon Films to peel back some layers on a peculiar little sci-fi film from the late 80s – Alien from L.A. Now, why is it peculiar? Well, it’s because it doesn’t take itself very seriously. It’s almost a comedy in how our lead character, Wanda Saknussem (what kind of name is that?!?), acts with a nasally, dorky voice. But it’s played by the mega-hot Kathy Ireland, so isn’t that funny?!?

But, more to the point, it’s, yes, an ALIEN from Los Angeles that Ireland is playing, but not in the sense you’d think. No, she doesn’t go to outer space or accidentally stow away on a spaceship or anything like that. She actually gets into the center of the Earth and finds an underground civilization that isn’t too far off from what we have up here. It’s more like when you call someone who immigrates from another country an alien. So, yeah, it is a little different than we normally see, but it kind of makes it a much more interesting and subtle Cannon movie.

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