Necrostorm delivers!! – Cult
Did Cult stumble upon another Modern Day Nasty?...
Thinking back I believe my head must have been stuck in the clouds in regards to some important cult (horror/shock) films that have found release in the past few years. I missed the hubbub and mumblings in relation to the reincarnation/rehash of Poltergeist (It's anyone's guess as to whether there's another franchise in the works?) I was very surprised to see a poster advertising it (I'm guessing it comes out very soon, if not already *The official release is this Thursday 5/21). I've managed to catch a few notable films however. The intriguing and rather disturbing Human Centipede series (more please *The third and said to be final one releases on June 19th) or the Hatchet franchise which has gotten progressively more jaded and twisted in the FX department, no complaints here! Horns a feature that shocked me with its humorous dialogue and premise, I believe Feind rather liked it also (Review here). Who would've ever imagined that a sleeper hit with biblical undertones featuring Daniel Radcliffe, Harry Potter himself, could have been so impressive. I fought the beckoning call of slumber land and willed my eyes to remain open for the duration of Wyrmwood (I was tired it wasn't in the slightest a horrid film). Dead Snow re-emerged to remind everyone that Nazi zombies are brutal without mercy, sadistically vicious and bursting with ingenuity all the while making you cringe between fits of laughter though you know deep down it's wrong to. Wolfcop (Cult's Review, Feind's Review) reminded us all to be weary of pretty ladies, that not all alcoholic cops are bad and that not all lycanthropes wake up naked in monkey enclosures and hunt humans in underground train stations. TDBS has discovered an aspiring cult hit too, through post production and now into its distribution phase, thanx again Jimmy (and congrats) for introducing us both to the comical genius and shenanigans of Hans Crippleton. Alas we've stumbled across a few stinkers also, though it's best not to mention names and/or titles.
With all that in mind I have no excuses as to why I missed the Necrostorm company and a behemoth imprint they left on the splatter scene with a film known only as Adam Chaplin. This was nearly five years back, a time when Feind and myself were both busy in our own respective pockets of the universe unknown to each other, working to pay bills and thinking about every little thing that makes life tedious but not anything in the slightest in relation to what was to come later... our site you’re visiting right now. After a little meandering afar from the 'beaten track' I finally find myself back on course. I can hear a faint chorus growing in volume by the second ... about time, get on with it Cult! So what is it exactly that makes Adam Chaplin worthy of note and the Necrostorm company one to keep an eye out for in the future?
Consider if you will a movie that takes you back several decades to the hay day of European Grindhouse/Exploitation cinema add to that nostalgic vibe a style that Manga (Japanese anime) brought to the unsuspecting masses (leaving them salivating for more) and you'll be somewhat close to knowing what to expect of Adam Chaplin. To be more accurately precise if Hobo With A Shotgun (a Rutger Hauer favorite of mine *and Feind!),Riki-oh (a Chinese martial arts fest with guts) and Fists of the Northstar (a phrenetic paced action Manga tale) had an illegitimate offspring odds are high that it would be eerily similar to what you will find here.
In brief Adam, portrayed by writer/director Emanuele De Santi, is out to avenge the death of his wife, Emily (Valeria Sannino). Unable to turn to the corrupt police, he takes matters into his own hands. He manages to summon a wise cracking demon (where might I be able to lease one?) who promises to take him directly to his wife's murderer if he does exactly what he's told. With very little in the way of a confusing storyline to get in the way, the action is fast, vicious, crimson soaked and plentiful. It really is as though you are witnessing a live action comic book with violence at a pace that only that medium can provide. This is where my reference to both Riki-oh and Fists of the Northstar come in. AC leaves very little to the imagination in the way of the resulting carnage. I think it's a safe assumption that the majority of the budget was spent on physical and (the especially rapid) CGI FX as the screen is often littered with twitching limbs, snapped appendages and faces pulverized into naught but quivering pulp unable to answer the questions posed them.
The environment in which the movie is set is a dismal one, set in the near future in an undisclosed city. The sun is brighter more oppressive than ever. Most of the scenes lighting is stark, bright blue and gray though never enough to dampen and cloud any gloriously bloody FX scene. It appears that excitement, color and happiness are things of the past much like Adam's wife shown through a nostalgic cinematic scratchy filter lens. It's as though the projector is Adam's mind also rapidly deteriorating as his “dark passenger” (a Dexter reference there! *Another Feind favorite!), the wise cracking albino demon residing under an inverted crucifix laceration on his shoulder, slowly takes over fueled by his host's seething hatred and insatiable desire for vengeance at any earthly cost.
Much like Hobo With A Shotgun, all of the characters are larger than life, also as if ripped from the same storyline, a trio of sadistic family members run 'their' streets with an 'iron fist' (Motorhead hankering, anyone?). Denny (Christian Riva), the patriarch, is dependent upon 'donated' fluids to stay healthy following a mishap in his youth whereupon his face became a chew toy for his beloved pet, a sizable dog. Ironically the same fluids responsible for the canine's sudden interest in human flesh are the same that pump through Denny's veins and have done so for some time rendering him a mask wearing lunatic. To add insult to injury and in order to plump up the menacing quota in the storyline this guy is a bit of a nutter in the sadism department (which floor exactly is that on?) I can only assume that he's read the complete works of Marquis de Sade only to return the collection to whence it was purchased accompanied by a scalding complaint and the demand of his money back.
In an especially grisly scene Denny demands what is owed him by Emily. When he doesn't receive a satisfactory answer he waxes poetic on manners and the benefits of being courteous and prompt, then devises a suitable punishment that utilizes gasoline and an open flame with no regard for his own safety and close proximity (semantics, it's a movie...right). The nostalgic vibe comes in for me personally when I realized that AC had (vivid, clear and bold) subtitles. It's shot in Italian much like many of my other “video nasty” favorites (shot decades previous, before they were re-released unintentionally hysterically dubbed for a wider audience) a fact which only makes it exceedingly more sinister IMO.
It's clear that Emanuele De Santi had a strong vision in mind for this movie and did his damnedest to stick to it by placing himself in the starring role of a script that he scribbled and subsequently directed. Though it's a feature that won't garner any Hollywood attention, gold statues or snobby critic mentions it is, however, still a film that I'm very glad I was made aware of (thanx Paul). Viewing Adam Chaplin will carve smiles into gorehounds and cult film aficionados faces (around the globe) then after viewing have them search for a pen to jot down notes in order to closely follow any and all of Necrostorm's future projects. Hotel Inferno started me on this very journey so it's safe to say I'm hooked. Taetor City is next (top position on my birthday list) then I'll gladly devour any other celluloid treats they happen to release. A heavy Nostalgic vibe, easily discernible influences to the point of homage, sinister over-the-top Troma-esque characters, brutal excessive gore, frantic comic book action whatever the mathematical equation for a cult release is, it's all included here in a very watchable package.
Necrostorm delivers!! – Cult
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Feind loves watching movies of all kinds so if we watch it, we tell whether you should as well. I'll share mostly horror but I also enjoy everything from big Blockbusters to micro-budget Independent films.
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