AIP was certain that making the connection to Corman’s previous Poe films was the way to go, so at the last second, and in the final frame of the film, they had Price read a couple lines from the poem.
For all its failings, Battle Beneath the Earth is a difficult movie to hate. In my case, this is partly due to it having the disarming quality of seeming like it was the result of someone watching me play army men on my bedroom floor when I was six and then making a movie out of it.
An expedition crew — comprised of four women and two men — heads out from the planet Cynro toward the unexplored planet Tem 4 in response to a mysterious distress call. Due to the length of the voyage, many months have passed by the time of their arrival, at which point the conveniently humanoid inhabitants of Tem 4 claim no knowledge of the signal.
Emboldened, perhaps, by the success of the first film and the amount of creative leeway given him by Toei, Ito this time largely dispensed with genre trappings and delivered a film that was even more obviously the product of a singular directorial vision.
The action may indeed be bad, but there’s a lot of it. Like Melissa Moore and Cat Sassoon, all this movie wants to do is entertain you. And like its stars, the results are pretty feeble even if the effort is enthusiastic.
The shame here — or at least one of the many shames — is that, with films like Nagin and the original Jaani Dushman, Raj Kumar Kohli demonstrated a genuinely quirky sensibility, while at the same time proving that he could draw in a popular audience. Jaani Dushman: Ek Anokhi Kahani, on the other hand, demonstrates the culmination of a gradual grinding down of that sensibility.
Neon disco windchime nude dancing, and so many David Carradine buffalo shots per minute that to merely gaze upon them is enough to drive sane men mad.
It’s really one of Hammer’s most impressive, quirkiest efforts. Regardless of how bad things were for Hammer in the 70s, the movies that came out of it were usually very good and very interesting.
Though our modern eyes might see The Godless Girl as containing, at best, the makings of a solid “B” type feature, DeMille clearly saw himself as making an epic.
It is simply a visual treat, and the amount of imagination apparent in every aspect of its design is a joy to behold, with a story that is solid and economical enough in its construction to easily survive instances of ideological lip service.
Female Prisoner #701 is a thrilling piece of exploitation cinema, as well as a challenging work of visual artistry. But, as great as it is, it merely set the stage for what was to come.
But then, Fanck goes and does something like the shot of Johannes outside, smoking a cigarette while sitting on an old wooden fence with the whole of the Alps spreading out behind him, and it pulls you right back in. Silent films trade in images, by necessity, and Fanck manages on many occasions to capture scenes of iconic beauty.