Sunday, 16 September 2012

5 Marvelous Monster Team Up Movies

 I love two for one deals, the more I can stretch a budget the better but sometimes the idea is better than the outcome.  I can just imagine the people at the studios, well this character brings in a lot of money and this one does as well, what if we put them together, we'll get twice the money!  It's a great thought but the world doesn't work that way and most times it can ALIENate your audience if you use those PREDATORy tactics.  It's hard to keep a balance and give enough airtime from both and like wrestling nowadays, you can't really have anyone lose.  So, you're stuck with run ins, disqualifications and never really get a clean pin on either character.  It can be done but the writers have to understand the characters and not just slap things together, like jam and eggs.

Here are 5 Marvelous Monster Team Up Movies:

5. Frankenstein Meets The Wolfman (1943) - Grave robbers break into the Talbot Museleom to steal from Lawrence Talbot corpse.  To their surprise, they are met with more than they expected and the next morning Larry Talbot is found on the sidewalk of another village and brought to the hospital.  He tells the doctors and police who he is and asks to be restrained, but Dr. Mannering does not believe it necessary.  Unfortunately, the next morning someone has been killed in the village by a wild animal and the windows of the Talbot room are wide open and Larry is bagged on the bed. Larry begs them to help him, but they think he's crazy, so Larry busts out and finds the old gypsy lady from the first movie, Maleva!  She recommends talking to Dr. Frankenstein, so they hit the road and head for his castle.  When they arrive, they find out Dr. Frankenstein is dead, his monster is dead and nobody wants to talk about it.  That night, there's a full moon, so Talbot goes all Wolfal and ends up being chased down to the ruins of the castle.  There he falls ass backwards into a cavern that has Frankenstein's monster housed in ice.  The wolfman busts the monster loose and they go searching for Dr. Frankenstein's notes to no avail.  The next day, Talbot meets with Baroness Frankenstein and asks for her help to find the notes that will cure him from his lycanthropy.  She invites him to the town festival and after wrecking a well staged musical number the town probably spent months putting together, Talbot gets busted by Dr. Mannering.  Luckily, the monster shows up and starts messing up the party, you can't take that guy anywhere.  Talbot grabs a wagon, throws the monster on and high tails it out of there with the villagers chasing them with pitch forks and fire!  After seeing the monster, the baroness shows Talbot where the papers are and Dr. Mannering decides to help them anyway he can or will he?  Good movie, Lon Chaney Jr., reprises the role as the Wolfman and Bela Lugosi finally gets a crack at being the monster.  I am still impressed when I watch the wolfman transformation scenes, I think that and the American Werewolf in London are my favourite werewolf changing scenes.  This is the first in the series of ensemble movie monsters that Universal did and I think they did a great job.  Although, low on body count and blood isn't everywhere, the film offers a classic horror ambiance and a chilling tale of a man trying to escape his cursed fate.  Good film, interesting to watch and this is the quietest Bela has ever been in a film. 

4. Freddy vs. Jason (2003) - In this potential epic, Freddy Krueger is stuck in Hell and bummed because all the kids on Elm Street have forgotten about him and no longer fear him, which happens to be the source of his power. So he devises a plan to trick Jason Voorhees, bring him to Elm Street, so Jason can kill the teenagers there and they will think it's Freddy.  When they think it's Freddy, they'll start fearing him again and he can get his power back. Not contrived at all. So, Freddy puts on a dress and pretends to be Jason's mom and ships his bitch ass to Elm Street.  Where to start on Elm Street, how bout Nancy's house, they're always some dumb ass teens there and surprise, there is? Lori Campbell lives there and coincidentally, her mother as recently passed away, her boyfriend has mysteriously vanished and she's having friends over for drinks while her parents are gone.  When a young pair go upstairs and get it on, Jason sneaks upstairs, kills the young guy and folds him up in the bed.  His girlfriend comes out of the shower and freaks when she finds him.  The police come in and try not to mention Freddy's name but the teens hear it and this opens up a can of worms.  Freddy starts to get his power back but Jason is going hog wild and like a dead ax wielding maniac in a candy store killing people.  So, Freddy's pissed and now is trying to kill Jason, while Lori Campbell and her friends are trying to stop Freddie.  Also Lori's boyfriend busts out of a sanitarium with his friend to help because they were terrorized by Freddie only a year ago? Aaaah! Confused? Bottom Line is the kids are using Jason to stop Freddy and trying not to get killed in the process! It could have been really good, the premise that you have these two heavyweight villains colliding would have been so good, but it's not. What's missing, in my opinion is the fun.  Freddy with his smart one liners and his ironic ways of killing using the fears of his victims is gone and replaced with swears and scenes in the boiler room.  Jason Vorrhees, the unstoppable killing machine is a now a weak mama's boy who is afraid of water.  The teens are morons and one can't wait for them to be chopped apart and my suspension of disbelief can only be stretched so far that these idiots after breaking into a mental institution to fight Freddy Kreuger would stop for a moment to smoke a joint. Really? I love these franchises and it's really disappointing to watch such good characters be treated so poorly.  Try and avoid.
3.  Dracula vs Frankenstein (aka Los Monstruos Del Terror or Assignment Terror) (1970) - Aliens from the dying planet Ummo have taken over the bodies of earthlings to try and take over the Earth.  Their plan is get hot girls and monsters, such as the Wolfman, the Mummy, Dracula and Frankenstein's monster to help them control the human population.  The head alien, Dr. Warnoff and his assistant Maleva Kerstain end up killing a carny for the bones of Dracula and then kidnapping the carny's hot girlfriend.  Once the stake is taken out of the heart of Dracula, he seems to be in good shape and they brain scramble the hot girl to keep her in their power.  This brings in Inspector Tobermann, who is investigating the carny murder, which leads him to a book store with a book of legendary monsters, torn pages in a book and a dead Liberian! You alien monsters, those books are for everybody! The aliens end up kidnapping the wolfman and resurrecting him but he their chagrin, he is too much to handle and escapes!  While investigating the new murders of the Wolfman, Inspector Toberman runs into a girl he knew in high school, who's father is a judge and knew the wolfman, what a small world.  Tooberman soon realizes that he must stop these aliens from taking over and destroy the monsters they brought back to save the world!  This movie is all over the place and the plot is insane!  It was written by the Paul Naschy, who plays the werewolf in movie and is the third appearance of the werewolf character in his series.  Apparently the filming was interrupted because of the finances and a number of key scenes weren't shot.  A lot of scenes don't make sense, the acting is really stiff and the worst part is Dracula and Frankenstein don't even fight!  HOW can you call it Dracula vs Frankenstein, if they don't even fight or are on the screen together at the same time.  Disappointing and not even that amusing to watch.  They should have went with the hot girls plan.
2. Puppet Master vs. Demonic Toys (2004) - The Toulon puppets now reside with Toulon's great nephew, Robert and his teenage daughter, Alex.  Robert is working on deciphering Toulon's diary and bringing the puppets back to life.  With only a day before Christmas, Robert and Alex succeed and bring Blade, 6 Shooter, Jester and Pinhead back to life.  Robert introduces himself and Alex to the puppets and they seem content with their new masters. However, Robert doesn't realize that the evil Erica Sharpe, owner of Sharpe Toys, has been spying on him and wants the puppets for herself.  She sends a team of thugs to retrieve the puppets from the Toulons but are defeated by the puppets and Robert.  Did I mention that Erica Sharpe also controls the Demonic Toys, Jack Attack, Grizzly Teddy, Baby Oopsie Daisy and has made a pact with the demon, Bael to create evil toys that will kill thousands upon thousands of innocent lives on Christmas Day, making him the coolest demon ever and her the ruler of the world. AND she wants the Toulon puppets... bitch.  Anyway, Toulon and Alex find the spy camera, so Robert goes to the office of Erica Sharpe to investigate something(?) and uncovers the evil plot.  Now Robert, Alex and tacked on love interest cop must stop the Demonic Toys with their puppets!  This isn't a Full Moon production, but a Syfy Universal thing.  Corey Feldman stars (for a better use of the word) as Robert Toulon and seems more creepy with his teenage daughter and awkward with his love interest.  The story is similar to a Full Moon picture but dumber and they don't use the puppets or the toys as much as they should.  If you've seen any of the other Syfy titles then you know what to expect but I would watch Dollman vs the Demonic Toys instead.
1. Vampire Girl vs Frankenstein Girl (2009) - Monami is a transfer student at Tokyo High School.  She's shy, likes the most popular boy in the class and happens to be a vampire.  She gives the boy she likes, Mizushima a chocolate on Valentine's Day and he eats it not knowing that the filling for the chocolate was her blood.  um ew.  Unfortunately, Mizushima is reluctantly dating Keiko, the school bitch and daughter of the vice principal, Mr. Furano, who moonlights as a scientist in the school's basement, conducting experiments on students he and the hot school nurse, Midori have murdered. Everyone needs a hobby, but he wants to complete the work of a distant relative Dr. Frankenstein.  Anyway, Mizushima ends up in the school nurses office from eating to many bloody chocolates and meets up with Monami.  They are about to kiss and share more blood, when Keiko busts in and chases them away and a drop of Monami blood lands on the floor.  Midori tries to clean it up but evades her every move.  She finally catches it and brings it to Mr. Furano, who realizes this is just the thing to complete his life's work.  Meanwhile on the roof, Monami explains to Mizushima that she is a vampire, how she kills people and would like for him to live with her. Mizushima reluctantly gives in and becomes a vampire.  Just as he turns, who pops up but Keiko! Monami lets her know the skinny on the vampire thang and Keiko rushes her! Monami steps aside and Keiko plummets to her death.  Mr. Furano is devasted... no, um sad...no, overjoyed that his daughter is dead and he can piece her back together.  While rebuilding his daughter, he vows revenge on Vampire Girl!  This movie was so much fun to watch!  The first 5 minutes had me totally hooked!  Tons of blood flying all over the place, over the top characters that make no sense and the film does not takes itself to seriously.  It's gory and has some good special effects and the side stories are as bizarre as the main story.  Cheap and Fun, I'm sure you'll dig it! Must See!

Like the trend of mashing up songs, monster mashing isn't the best all the time.  Sure the rhythm's may seem to work together and they are in the same genre but you just don't get the same feeling of closure or enjoyment that you get on some of these characters regular solo outings.  Sometimes you end up with a Chickenfoot instead of the Fantomas.

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