Monday, 31 October 2011

They Don't Cut the Grass Anymore

                             Interview with director Nathan Shiff followed by trailer

Nathan Schiff's They Don't Cut the Grass Anymore tells the story of 2 psychotic hillbilly gardeners who, fed up with the treatment at the hands of their well-to-do clients, decide to turn their gardening skills towards people rather than plants. Independent filmmaker Schiff, well know for his first exploitation film Weasels Rip My Flesh, ups the ante in this shocker with his usual mix of terrible acting and full on cheap-but-gross special effects. Limbs fly, faces are literally chopped from the skull and blood flies through the air, but Schiff still manages to dish up plenty of belly laughs along the way.

Filmed in glorious Super 8, the film is often scratchy, jumpy and grainy. It can't have cost more than a few pounds to make, but it has a certain something about it, something that only a mid-eighties film made on a battered old dirt-cheap camera can produce.

Obviously this film will not be to everyone's taste, all of you who are used to clean, polished finishes will probably hate the look of the film, but those of you willing to give something 'different' a try might just enjoy it. On the downside, this is film is obviously not available for general release so tracking down a copy may prove difficult but if you can find one (or any of Schiff's movies) you're certainly in for crazy ride.

Sunday, 30 October 2011


In the not too distant future, the threat of terror has reached fever pitch. A decision is made to link all CCTV cameras to a central mainframe which can reduce the terror threat by keeping a watchful eye on everything at all times, but all is not as it seems as the Eyeborgs begin to take on a terrible new role in the 'war on crime' whilst trying to 'protect the safety of all citizens'.

This independent futuristic thriller isn't a bad fare for it's low production price. The special effect, whilst never seemingly sitting well with the real world, look fairly fluid and are very much out of the 'Robocop' vein of robots. The acting does let this film down a little, but as always the ever reliable Danny Trejo is worth the rental price.

If you're after a little light sci-fi entertainment and don't mind your films looking less like I, Robot and a bit more like it was put together by the 18 year old techie-nerd in a computer animation class, then this is worth a look. 

Saturday, 29 October 2011


Following on from Hobo with a Shotgun, we have another film which attempts to tread the grindhouse boards but sadly comes up short. Gutterballs follows rival bowling gangs over one night in bowling alley. Throw in a mask wearing psychopath hell-bent on killing each and every one of them and a pretty nasty scene involving a gang of thugs, a female bowler and a bowling pin and you have this messy 80's throwback. Unlike Hobo which includes numerous comic scenes this is one of those 'nasty for nasty's sake' films - now don't get me wrong, I usually have nothing against those types of films - but I at least demand to be entertained. I'll be generous and give this film a 5/10 as it does contain one or two decent attempts to shock and thrill, but sadly it doesn't make the strike it's hoping for and falls short of the mark.

NB: If you do decide to watch this film (not released in the UK so you will need to look overseas to get a copy) bear in mind that there are 2 versions. The 'best' edition currently available is the 'Balls Out' version which includes more gore etc.

Friday, 28 October 2011

Hobo With A Shotgun

                                        Warning: Video is uncut and contains strong
                                        violence and profanity ... Enjoy!

Hobo With a Shotgun - what can I say? A brilliant throwback to the trashy films of the 70's and 80's, which achieves what Tarantino set out to do with his Grindhouse films, but failed to achieve. This exploitation flick is full of more gore, guts and gags than anything churned out of Hollywood right now and will leave you with a headache, a slightly nauseating feeling and a great big smile on your face. 8/10 - I'll give this a thumbs up/try it you just might like it!


Hello and welcome to Carl Sykes' Alternative Film Reviews. I watch a lot of films in my spare time, so I want to use this blog as an opportunity to briefly review each film, post a video link where possible and let you know what's good, what's bad and what is down-right appalling in the celluloid world. You won't find your run of the mill Hollywood films here, just the stuff you've never seen, never wanted to see or always wondered what it was like. Hopefully someone will find this interesting and it may just point you towards a hidden gem you've not yet seen, or help you to avoid the biggest turkey!