Thursday, August 6, 2015

Frankenstein Island - 1981

Holy shit, HOW is this movie from 1981?!  Wow, this movie looks, feels, smells like the late 60's. It's even got John Carradine in it, and that guy really got to one age and then just looked the same for the next 30 years.  But, 1981 it is and no clue anywhere online to show if it had been filmed previous to that.  This one is a genuinely old feeling movie.

We start with seemingly random scenes of hot air balloons.  Alright, that's unique.  I mean, how could you not like hot air balloons, right?  Well, when the balloonists land on an island, and go about exploring, and find a colony of weirdos there, you know you're in for a ride.  There's a woman turning people into sunglasses wearing zombies, there's an Edgar Allen Poe quoting prisoner played by Cameron Mitchell, there's a tribe of sexploited bikini wearing girls that don't really do much throughout the movie, there's Frankenstein, and then of course there's the ghost(?) of Frankenstein's creator (John Carradine) who chants "the power" a whole lot. Yeah, this movie makes tons of sense.

This movie was just a tad overdone and confusing, there's just so much going on the whole time and yet it's simultaneously very boring and bland.  It's great riffing material though and the pace is quick, so it's easy to watch.  It's obviously stretching a thin budget, but you have to give it props for having two major actors, and filming at a variety of neat locations including Mexico.

John Carradine has an extremely small part, like so many of his roles, and so many of the other characters are interchangeable to the point of getting them confused.  And it's filmed in that style where it touches on one story going on, then jumps to another somewhere else, another somewhere else.  It's not linear, where we follow the characters as they go on.  So it is slightly confusing and you should absolutely not pay it too much attention otherwise you'll probably just get mad at it.

It's the perfect movie to be super trashed while watching, in fact don't watch it without drugs and alcohol, because then you can have those awesome moments where you declare "I have no idea what's happening with this movie."  It's instantly riff-able, mockable, and hurts, but is prime grade A smelly cheese.  For riffability and general nonsense, it get's 3 solid B movie stars.

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