Saturday, October 22, 2011

HALLOWEENAGE #16: THE LAST HORROR FILM (1982)

Because in this oddball science-fiction flight of fancy, horror scream queens can easily best serious actresses who turn out scads of Oscar bait.  This is actually a slasher of sorts, set at the Cannes Film Festival, and starring Hammer hottie Caroline Munro (whom I have hugged) and MANIAC star Joe Spinnell (whom I have not).  Munro plays best actress Jana Bates and Spinnell plays an obsessed loser film geek who follows her to Cannes to convince her to star in his masterpiece.


I thought the Lloyd Kaufman intro on this was touching, especially "We don't want there to be a last horror film" (we don't!) and offered a lot of insight into the background of the director (danced for Bernstein before making this?!?).  The film itself is not especially that great, sorry, but a lot of that is due to the confusing tone of  it.  Spinnell's character is obviously a loser, so LAST HORROR FILM seems to be aiming barbs at horror fandom, but Munro's character later defends horror movies with the same arguments you've heard untold times before.  BUT then Spinnell goes to see a violent horror movie and reprimands the director for his sick filmmaking choices and also the whole fake-sexy-cool thing of movie celebrity and film festivals gets skewered.  So, huh?


Robin Leach is also very confused.


But there are some nice scenes and inventive choices amidst the turgid stuff.  Spinnell is very good at playing creepy, of course, and Munro is a good and good-looking actress.  Some of the shots are ambitious and the movie isn't BAD, per se, just pretty flawed.  The same director has had a huge body of work since then, including the epic-sounding THRASHIN' aka SKATE GANG.

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