ALUCARDA  (1978)

Juan López Moctezuma's atmospheric tale of demonic possession has the perfect amount of nudity, blood and burning nuns. Well acted by all, but it's Tina Romero's amazingly enthusiastic performance as Alucarda with her passionate rants and screams that make this gem deliriously addictive.  JV
 
THE BIG COMBO  (1955)
"Book me, small change." Sex, obsesssion, revenge, hearing loss. One of the finest film noirs of the rapidly winding down cycle, this latecomer from Joseph H. Lewis is sordid yet elegant. Shot by the great John Alton whose photography describes a universe of dead blacks and gray motivations.  VJ
 
BIG GUNS  (1973)
Excellent action movie from Duccio Tessari. A wronged Alain Delon systematically eliminates the mob bosses who killed his wife and kid. Richard Conte and Anton Diffring are two of his fearful targets. This is top ten revenge movie material.   JV
 
BLAZING MAGNUM  (1976)

An overlooked classic. Alberto de Martino's crime/revenge/mystery thriller holds up after multiple viewings because of good casting, an interesting plot, awesome music, and one of the greatest car chases ever. The best Stuart Whitman movie of all time. Highly recommended.  VJ

 
 
BLOOD AND BLACK LACE  (1964)
A masked killer is knocking off fashion models in Mario Bava's stylish and influential giallo. Between Bava's colorful lighting and Carlo Rustichelli's seductive score, the body count has never been more beautiful.  JV
 
BLOOD SPATTERED BRIDE  (1974)

Elegantly twisted sex n'horror flick from Spain. Despite the use of a body double for the really cute Maribel Martin, this dreamy, beautifully-photographed wallow in debauchery gets better every time I see it.  VJ
 
BRANDED TO KILL (1967)
With inventive framing and stunning black & white cinematography and masterful use of lighting, Seijun Sukuzi turns a simple and absurd script into a genre masterwork.  JV
 
DANGER: DIABOLIK  (1968)
Super cool super villain super groovy pop art action from the great Mario Bava.  JV
 
DARK KNIGHT  (2008)
 
DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS  (1971)
Much more than a simple vampire tale, Daughters of Darkness weaves a potent spell of ennui, like a nightmare never quite shaken off. It finds the dark heart of the innocent, exposing it to the half-light of the coming dawn. Delphine Seyrig was never more beautiful as she manipulates a honeymoon couple towards their inexorable end. As elegant and fascinating as a spreading pool of blood, it is an undeniable classic.  VJ
 
DELLAMORTE DELLAMORE  (1994)
"I’d give my life to be dead."  Michele Soavi's first film after breaking away from Dario Argento is probably the best horror film of the decade - a visually stunning and complex meditation on love and death with lots of macabre humor and gore thrown in for good measure. A must see. JV
 
ELEMENT OF CRIME  (1984)
Comprised of one brilliant abstract image after another, Lars Von Trier's hypnotic and intentionally illogical trip through a bleak nightmare is totally fascinating viewing. A must see unless you are a donkey or horse lover.  JV
 
FOR YOUR YOUR HEIGHT ONLY (1979)
Pint-sized Filipino Secret Agent 00 (Weng Weng) uses a spent umbrella gun to float from a high rise into Atrocity infamy. Packed with whacky, dwarf sized spy gadgets that look astonishingly like regular household objects they happened to have on-hand (a deadly pen, a boater hat radio and a magical Filipino man-ring that somehow detects poison) and loads of unintentionally hilarious action sequences, this is truly a rare gem that delivers on so many levels -- despite the high expectations conjured by the title alone. The only thing missing was a scene where the constantly grinning Pilifino dwarf-spy walks toward the camera muttering “Dieter, Dieter, Dieter!”  DT
 
HICKEY AND BOGGS  (1972)

Overlooked gritty existential crime movie with Bill Cosby and Robert Culp as destitute private eyes. Walter Hill's cynical script is good but it's Culp's restrained and remarkably self assured direction that makes it such great viewing.  JV
 
IMPULSE  (1974)
"Hey, watch it! What do you think you do, own the place? Fat... people like you oughta be ground up... and made into dog food!"  That is just one shatagasmic moment in a movie shat full of them. This is 100% pure shat, a wonderfully bad little gem of mild shatacular sleaze that's nothing without his deliriously shataliscious performance. Check it out - you'll shat yourself.  JV
 
ISLAND OF DEATH  (1975)

For the first 10 minutes, Island of Death appears to be a romantic film about a young couple vacationing on a small Greek island. Shortly after – to our delight -- it spirals into a no-holds barred murder-fest with a non-discriminatory list of victims, and pleasant little surprises around every turn. You can’t call yourself an Atrocian until you’ve seen this one – twice! So this is what it sounds like when goats cry?  DT
 
KILL BABY KILL  aka  OPERAZIONE PAURA   (1966)
Giacomo Rossi-Stuart plays a doctor sent to a remote village to investigate some mysterious deaths the locals attribute to the supernatural. Luckily they're right! Mario Bava's genuinely creepy gothic masterpiece is engrossing in story and beautiful in set and location. This haunting and often surreal ghost story is not to be missed.   JV
 
LADY TERMINATOR  (1988)

When a gorgeous anthropologist is possessed by the spirit of an ancient sea witch, she takes us on a killing spree that travels quickly through every 80’s cliché imaginable. Discos, spandex, big hair – you name it. With enough gratuitous nudity and pointless violence to please even the most jaded Atrocian, LT culminates in one of the best mullet and tank filled gun battles in the history of film. Some say this Indonesian film is a ‘rip-off’ of Terminator, I prefer the term ‘homage’.  DT
 
MANHUNT  (1972)
Genre great Fernando Di Leo turns out one of the best Italian action/revenge movies ever. Mario Adorf's frantic performance is legend. More of the dream cast includes Henry Silva, Woody Strode, Luciano Puluzzi, Adolfo Celi, Cyril Cusack and Sylva Koscina. Recommended with extreme prejudice.  JV
 
RING OF DEATH aka UN DETECTIVE aka DETECTIVE BELLI aka MAKE-UP STAINS  (1969)
One of the premiere Euro-ambience flicks of the era. It features the great Franco Nero as a corrupt government official (were there any other kind in Italy?) searching for the killer of the son of corrupt businessman (ditto) Adolfo Celi. This downbeat detective drama from Romolo Guerrieri (The Sweet Body of Deborah) has a great soundtrack by Fred Bongusto, a heart-breaking performance by Delia Boccardo as the doomed Sandy Bronson, a junkie rock star (Susanna Martinkova) and the incomparable beauty of Florinda Bolkan. The English-language cut has one of the best downbeat endings around.  VJ
 
LE SAMOURAI  (1967)

Simply one the best hit man movies ever. The great Alain Delon is perfect as the fastidious anti-hero. This film says more in a few frames than most films say over the course of two hours. A must.  VJ
 
SATAN'S BLOOD  (1977)
Carlos Puerto's Satanic movie delivers where most devil worshipping movies do not - tons of sex and nudity.  JV
 
SLAUGHTER HOTEL  (1971)
With this nudefest disguised as a giallo, Fernando Di Leo delivers a nice looking sleazy gem. There's wall to wall graphic nudity but the high points are Margaret Lee and Rosalba Neri writhing around naked while having pointless flashback dreams. This one gets a heavy rotation down in the Atrocity Room.  JV
 
TENEBRE  (1982)
"When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth." To think the giallo was dead and buried when Dario Argento created this cold and impersonal murder masterpiece...  JV
 
TETSUO: IRON MAN  (1988)
Shinya Tsukamoto's supernatural cybernetic revenge tale is pure cinema - dazzling visuals paired with hyperkinetic action. Amateurish at times but so meticulously constructed the outcome is an expressionistic work of art.  JV
 
TOOLBOX MURDERS  (1977)
The first third of this grindhouse classic is pointless, mean-spirited violence and nudity - with some stylish touches. The final half finds sweet former child actress Pamela Ferdin tied-up and crying the entire time at the hands of a lolipop sucking, singing and humming psychosexual killer. The ending is appropriately nasty and depressing. Hurray for the mean 70's.  JV
 
VIOLENT PROTECTION aka VIOLENT NAPLES  (1976)
The definitive Italian cop thriller is the film that inadvertently spawned the Atrocity Film Festival.  As its name suggests, it is violent and features the god of Italian cops, Maurizio Merli.  Great tunes, car chases and kick-ass action make this a must see for all Atrocians.  Long live Merli.  VJ
 
WAVES OF LUST  (1975)
From the opening scene featuring full frontal Silvia Dionisio, we could tell that this one was destined for greatness. Continually delivering with every millimeter of celluloid ‘Waves of Lust’ weaves a semi-solid plot with wall-to-wall J&B and non-stop debauchery of every kind imaginable. Coaxed to a fever pitch by Barbara (Dionisio) and Irem’s (Al Cliver) constant ‘encouragement’, Girgio’s (John Steiner) decent into J&B induced madness was an absolute pleasure to watch. Several classic J&B shots -- each capped by the next -- culminating in the best use of J&B to date with Steiner sipping the legendary scotch from Dionisio’s navel on deck.   DT
 
WHIP AND THE BODY  (1963)
Mario Bava's gothic masterpiece is both a horror classic and a romance classic. It is technically imaginative, gorgeous to look at, and the subject matter is dangerously subversive. The fabulous cast (Lee, Kendall, Gali, Pigozzi, Medin) is topped off with the perfect visage of Daliah Lavi.  VJ
 

 

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