Wanted The Best, You Got The Best
RTC's Look At A Few Of The Films Starring The Members Of
By Shorty LaBrea
Detroit Flop City
If you have not gone out and seen this movie yet, and by the opening
weekend box-office of two million clams, chances are good that you
haven't, I would say don't bother. Save this one for video. The
only thing that is truly worth the movie theater experience is the
5.1 surround-sound remix of classic KISS anthem and the movie's
namesake Detroit Rock City. (Of course a DVD player
and a good stereo system could probably top this.)
KISS vs. Brion James In A Celebrity Death Match
has to be one of the weirdest movies I have ever seen. Part after-school
special, part concert video, part sci-fi / action / thriller (and
I use the term "action" loosely), KISS Meets The Phantom of the
Park is destined to live among the ranks of such classics as
Plan Nine From Outer Space, and could have easily shown up
on an episode of MST3K. I can understand why The Donnas had this
one on their Top Five Movie List. (See
RTC number 2.)
by Gordon Hessler, who brought us some great episodes of "Wonder
Woman" and "ChiPs" to the small screen, it is easy to see why most
of this movie plays out like a bad after-school special. Melissa
and Sam are at an amusement park enjoying the rollercoasters but
Sam (who works there) has to check on some strange things. Meanwhile,
the park manager has brought KISS in to do three shows to help business,
but Abner (the designer of the park attractions) is not happy about
rock-n-roll at his park, and is kidnapping people to turn them into
the perfect robots.
movie has such RTC-worthy talent as John Dennis Johnston, Anthony
Zerbe, and The Real Don Steele. Even Brion James shows up and is
allowed to utilize his innate acting ability to its fullest as the
character of the doofus security guard with such memorable lines
as, "Hey, let's go get some coffee."
Did you know that KISS has superpowers? Yeah, neither did I. Apparently
thanks to some mystic talismans, the band members are able to exhibit
extraordinary abilities like: flying, shooting lasers out of their
eyes, teleporting from place to place, breathing fire, moving objects
with their mind, and oh yeah, mounting a hugely successful reunion
tour some twenty years after the original line-up split due to creative
differences. Definitely don't miss the scene where KISS gets to
battle it out with evil Robo-KISS under the control of the mad scientist.
went to junior high with a kid who had the habit of taking off his
shoe in the cafeteria during lunch, smelling it, exclaiming "Man,
that smells weird! See?" and then shoving it in the face of the
person sitting closest to him. RTC is adding KISS Meets The Phantom
to its Must See List if only because it is a movie that most closely
approximates this sentiment. This shit is too weird not to be true.
Skippy Is A Headbanger!?!
a desperate hunt that was closer to Lancelot's quest for the grail
than a search for a cheesy 80s horror flick, I did manage to turn
up a copy of Trick Or Treat, and let me tell you, it is well
worth the effort. Quality-wise, it probably deserves a little mudslinging.
It's really little more than your average regurgitated teen-horror
schlock-fest. But in RTC terms, this movie is a rare gem!
TV's Marc Price (Skippy from "Family Ties") plays Eddie, your average
metal-head dork, who is tormented by the high school jocks, and
expresses his frustration in letters to his rock-n-roll hero, Sammi
Curr played by the dancer Tony Fields. (Give your favorite
heavy metal star the taste test and see if he or she can beat Sammi's
moves.) Unfortunately, Sammi dies in a hotel fire. Whatever is an
angst-ridden teen to do? Why, raise said rock star from the dead
by playing his records backwards, of course duh! so
that said rock star can exact vengeance on said jocks who torment
ok, so the acting pretty much sucks and the story is kind of lame
for preying upon authority-figure fears of Satanic messages hidden
in rock songs. They even have the audacity to include a scene where
Skippy's I mean Eddie's mom accidentally turns on
his stereo only to be confronted with such an onslaught of heavy-metal-guitar
mayhem that all she can do is scream in fear and pain, while pawing
desperately at the stereo in a vain attempt to not only understand
this "complex" electronic device known as a "stereo system," but
also shut it off. (Silly woman. Only men could EVER hope to fully
comprehend such technological intricacies.)
Celebrity Roll Call! Sound Off! Charles Martin Smith, who you may
remember as the balding dorky guy from such films a American
Graffiti and Never Cry Wolf, directs this horror romp
and makes a cameo appearance as one of the high school's teachers.
(By all means, please check out another of Mr. Smith's directorial
masterpieces, the equally horrifying, Air Bud.) Look for
Alice Nunn in the role of Mrs. Cavell, the teacher spearheading
the fight against that most heinous of moral blights, rock-n-roll.
If you're showing off your movie-trivia knowledge and someone should
ever confront you with the question, "Who the hell is Alice Nunn?"
Just tell them, "Large Marge sent ya." Don't miss "X-Files" executive
producer Glenn Morgan as Skippy's I mean Eddie's good
what would a rock-n-roll horror flick be without real-life heavy
metal cameos? Ozzy Osbourne makes his acting debut as the Rev. Gilstrom
on a crusade to end filth and perversion in rock music. Oh, the
irony! Don't blink or you'll miss the God of Thunder himself, Gene
Simmons, as the radio station disc jockey and friend of Skippy
I mean Eddie who unwittingly hands over the record that will
bring back the zombified Sammi Curr.
This high school horror flick gets a C+ in my grade book for acting
and originality but an A++ for cult value and "so bad it's good"
fun. If you can find it, I'd say it's easily worth the price of
a rental, but don't forget to put your Stryper album back in the
closet after you're done. Someone might find it.