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Askew Review 15

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(Shock-O-Rama) Horror Comedy. 90 minutes. Rated R. Brett Piper delivers the third film he promised to Ei Cinema, and it may be the best one heís ever done. For those of you familiar with Mr. Piperís career with Ei Cinema he started with the hilarious Bite Me! And you can never go wrong with strippers versus mutant, pot eating bugs. Then there was his haunted house deal with Screaming Dead, which he played a little more straight. This was a taut little gore fest with plenty of tasty ladies showing us their goodies. Now, for this film Piper went for the bastard child of all horror genres: the anthology flick. Most anthology flicks tend to either drag in the middle or the frame work is lame. Shock-O-Rama manages to avoid both traps. The frame work is clever in that thereís this low budget studio that has an actress (Misty Mundae) who appears in all of their films (sound familiar?). Well, sheís getting fed up with all the shitty movies and the studio boss is getting fed up with her. Before she can quit he fires her. This gives her an excuse to go out to her newly purchased home that she got for a steal because of a little devil worship goings on many years ago. It doesnít take long before the former home owner rises from the grave and starts to torment our nubile young actress. What the zombie isnít ready for is the fact that she is sick of taking everyoneís shit, including the undead. 
  Now, while sheís busy battling the undead our producer needs a fresh new face to star in his crappy movies. Thatís where we get the other two tales in out little anthology. Like I said, clever. The first one, Mechanoid, has Caitlin Ross and Rob Monkiewicz fighting little aliens in a junkyard. The stop motion is clever and looks way better than the budget probably would have allowed for. The mechanized creature that the aliens build out of the junkyard is very cool. And Caitlin Ross is very hot in the flick and manages to keep her clothes on. A true surprise for an Ei Cinema flick.
  The third installment is called Lovely Is The Brain. AJ Khan stars as a young lady undergoing some bizarre dream therapy administered by the very gorgeous Julian Wells. But, her dreams are getting weirder every night and the other girls that have subjected themselves to the therapy are starting to drop like flies. AJ Khan has to find out what is behind the deadly doings.
  Shock-O-Rama has a pulpy feel to it. Even though itís a low budget film, the stories are interesting enough and move at a fast enough pace that you donít seem to mind and Director Piper manages to make his meager budget look much bigger than it probably was. Misty Mundae is hilarious in the wrap around sequence and her dialogue is laugh out loud funny. It kind of makes you think a lot of what she says are things that she has been thinking in real life for years. All the monsters are the fantastic stop motion that we have come to expect from Piper and we get a Ei Cinema flick that really only has one lesbian scene in and itís not really one, just a lead in to a shocking moment in the third act. Shock-O-Rama is the film that could lead Ei Cinema in a new direction, away from the lesbian soaked epics that we come to expect from them. More quality films and possibly even theatrical distribution. I would have paid to see Shock-O-Rama on the big screen. The DVD extras are plentiful. You get interviews with the director and producer, Michael Raso. Thereís a behind the scenes documentary that shows some tricks of the trade. Piper and Raso do a commentary and thereís a Q&A with Piper at the screening of the film in New York . Now, for my single complaint. Misty Mundae needed to keep her clothes on for this one. The nudity was the only gratuitous nudity in the flick. Iím not saying there isnít more nudity, but this is the only case of it really being unnecessary. Add to the fact that she looked more than a little pudgy and, well I would just rather remember my lean Misty to this one. -Douglas A. Waltz



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