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November 15, 2011

Movie Review: Full Moon's Grindhouse Collection - Dreamaniac, Mutant Hunt & Famous T&A

Full Moon Features are releasing several films from the old Wizard Video label onto the masses through their website at ten bucks a pop under the title Full Moon's Grindhouse Collection. Three of those releases I've gotten a chance to take a peek at - Dreamaniac, Famous T&A and Mutant Hunt.

One of those films is David DeCoteau's 1986 schlock-rich nugget Dreamaniac. DeCoteau has made a name for himself as being one of the more consistent B movie filmmakers to get behind a camera over the past 30 years. Most frequently he's been working with none other than Charles Band. I know what your thinking, "what's Clint Howard doing on the cover of this movie?". That isn't Clint folks, it's the knife-wielding psycho-bitch who slices and dices the majority of the cast. Not shockingly for a DeCoteau film, Dreamaniac opens with a dream sequence that comes complete with a fog machine, bright gels and some very gratuitous shots of shaved male buttocks. Ass is here in abundance, both clothed and unclothed are on display with lecherous close-ups.

Dreamaniac is a slasher in the vein most reminiscent of Wes Craven's Nightmare on Elm Street, except here it's just our main character having these violent dreams. Naturally, a party is held at his house, and the guests begin to meet various demises (the gnarliest being by power-drill). Dreamaniac is pretty bad but its also got that stupid charm that movies like Boardinghouse has.

Charles Band was really into doing film compilations back in the early days with VHS releases of The Best of Sex and Violence, Filmgore and Zombiethon. One of his earliest was Famous T&A, hosted by voloptuous siren Sybil Danning. Of the three Full Moon Grindhouse DVDs I’ve seen, Famous T&A is no doubt the best overall. Danning’s segments actually look better than I remember from my old pre-record - as do the various nudity filled clips and outtakes. Look out for scenes featuring some of the sexiest women to be on film: Edy Williams (Beyond the Valley of the Dolls), Ursualla Andress (Mountain of the Cannibal God), Phyliss Davis (Sweet Sugar), Uschi Digard ( Super-Vixens) and more.  This is a fun compilation if you like skin.

Finally, Tim Kincaid’s Mutant Hunt has also been included in this collection. To put it mildly, this one is tough to watch, even for lovers of “bad” cinema. Psychotic cyborgs dressed as members of Devo murder innocent folks sometime in the an abandoned something. Troma regular, Rick Gianisi stars as the lead protagonist Matt Riker. Gianisi and Kincaid together = Awfulness. I really enjoyed Kincaid's Breeders but loathed Robot Holocaust. Mutant Hunt is along the lines of Robot Holocaust. There are some laughs to be had here but mostly at the expense of the shoddy zero budget production value and piss poor acting.

The extra features for all three discs are identical. The featurette produced by Band is pretty enjoyable and runs at a little less then 10 minutes. He covers most the films and his reasoning for including them in the Full Moon Grindhouse Collection. The quality of the transfers is actually pointed out right before the movie starts - as most the films on the collection are from worn materials. This was a great call on Full Moon to be honest on the quality. Dreamaniac looks the worst of the three as it's lost much of it's color and shows the usual old VHS ware. Mutant Hunt is better but not by much. As mentioned earlier Famous T&A looks solid and likely better than current bootlegs circulating, so it's worth grabbing.

At less than 10 bucks a pop on the website, good or bad, you really can't go wrong with adding these titles to your collection of 80's trash. Order directly from Full Moon Features website right here: The Full Moon Grindhouse Collection

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