Trick or Treat (1986)

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Eddie Weinbauer (Marc Price) is a typical high school outcast, shunned because he dresses differently and listens to heavy metal. His favourite artist is a devil worshipping rock star called Sammi Curr (Tony Fields), famous for his debauched stage performances. When Sammi Curr dies in a mysterious hotel fire Eddie is distraught, and in a fit of rage and grief, tears down his Sammi Curr posters. Eddie seeks solace in a local radio DJ called Nuke (Gene Simmons of KISS fame), who tells Eddie that he is in possession of the record Sammi was recording at the time of his death, and that he’d want Eddie who was his biggest fan, to own it.

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However all is not as it seems. It soon becomes apparent that Sammi is not quite dead and is looking to take souls with him, using his biggest fan Eddie to help. I personally dig this movie. It’s directed by Charles Martin Smith who played the bookworm agent in The Untouchables. It’s typical 80’s cheese, with some great cameos from Gene Simmons and Ozzy Osbourne thrown in. Marc Price is great as the impressionable Eddie Weinbauer, however it’s the magnificent Tony Fields as Sammi Curr who steals this movie. Tony Fields gives his all to the role. Miming and throwing himself around the stage like his life depended on it. He has a great presence on screen and makes for a great villain. Sadly Tony died in 1995 from Cancer secondary to the AIDS virus.

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Another thing that really raises this movie’s game is the kick ass hair metal soundtrack from FASTWAY. I have it on vinyl and if you pick up the German mediabook release of this movie, you get the soundtrack CD included. Well worth a purchase if you can get it. Every song is catchy and is played at a point in the movie where they both just meld together. The supporting cast does very well and there are some great effects for it’s time. I suppose my only gripe is how abruptly the film ends, not giving anything away though.

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All in all it is well worth a watch. Personally I am kind of obsessed with this movie, for some strange reason it really struck a chord with me when I watched it. There is so much to love about it and it evokes a sense of nostalgia that will make you yearn for the good times. If you haven’t seen it then I do definitely recommend it.

4/5

JM

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Scrooged (1988)

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Since it’s Christmas I think it’s only right that I review a few crimbo movies. So to kick us off this month we have, my favourite Christmas movie, ‘Scrooged’. It’s basically a retelling of the classic Charles Dickens story A Christmas Carol. Frank Cross (Bill Murray) is the a head of a TV network which is soon to show a live version of A Christmas Carol. However Frank is not a fan of Christmas as it really doesn’t hold good memories for him. One night he is visited by his old, long dead boss who tells Frank that he’ll be visited by three ghosts in order for him to change the error of his ways.

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Frank used to be happy. However somewhere along the way he became consumed by work and completely miserable. He had a great girlfriend called Claire (Karen Allen), and things seemed fine. However that was a long time ago and now he’s a sour, hateful man. The first ghost to help Frank see where he went wrong is the Ghost of Christmas Past (David Johansen), an alcoholic, chain smoking cab driver. The ghost takes Frank back to when he was a small child, however all it does is remind Frank of how much he hates Christmas. The ghost then takes Frank to the time he met Claire, which slightly improves things, but not enough to change Frank.

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The next opportunity falls to the Ghost of Christmas Present (Carol Kane). She shows Frank all the people he is making miserable now, trying to somehow shake Frank into changing. This ghost is batshit crazy. She pokes, prods and punches the shit out of Frank all whilst giggling manically. I could go on and tell you the rest of what happens, but pretty much everyone knows the Scrooge story.

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Everyone is on top form. Bill Murray is fantastic as the sour faced, cynical Frank Cross. Carol Kane and David Johansen are brilliant as the ghosts. You have excellent supporting roles from great actors like John Glover, Robert Mitchum, John Forsythe, Alfre Woodard and even Bobcat Goldthwait as the screechy voiced Elliot Loudermilk. I do love this film, with it definitely being my favourite Christmas movie. I always try to squeeze it in at least once a year. I’m sure many have seen it, however if you haven’t then give it a go.

4/5

JM

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