Wednesday, April 16, 2014

DBH Review:Tourist Trap(1979)

By Eric Polk-
Netflix is both good and bad for the film buff. Their selection is vast, yet at times it can be frustrating to see the phrase 'short wait', 'long wait', or(the worst)'very long wait'. The classic Tourist Trap falls into the third category. However, turns out Charles Band from Full Moon Productions has decided to take this and many other horror/drive-in fare under his very own streaming service. Now, being this is a blog based on movies on the cheap, I'd much rather collect a physical copy, which I did and I wasn't disappointed.

The movie involves a few teenagers(one who would become both a Charlie's Angel and Midge on That 70s Show)whose vehicle breaks down near a rather out-of-the-way wax museum run by man who looks strangely like The Rifleman and that antagonist on the short-lived 1987 tv show Werewolf.(Ok, it is Chuck Connors but I need to keep yinz guessing). Like many teens-in-peril horror films of the day, one by one, they slowly disappear, some trapped by a man in a mask, others becoming mannequins. Eventually, it boils down to villain and that standard of horror movie cliches:Final Girl.

I'd put this movie squarely into beautiful b-movie fare. There's not a whole lot of blood, but there are very entertaining scenes(one involving a Plaster of Paris facial goes down as both eerie and legendary). Sadly, Chuck Connors doesn't convince as the baddie. Maybe because of his previous work in good guy roles but he tries very hard. This movie is pure craziness from the bizarre mannequins to the musical score. It's no wonder Stephen King considers this an undiscovered gem.

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