Friday 26 August 2011

WISHMASTER 3: Devil Stone (2001)

Movie and TV Mistress back with the third instalment of WISHMASTER films.

This third film is called WISHMASTER 3: Devil Stone in the UK but is also known as WISHMASTER 3: Beyond The Gates Of Hell. Like the second film it is another straight to DVD release, this film is also rated 15 rather then 18 like the rest of the series, these are signs that it will yet again be bad, but you never know so lets see if this can redeem the franchise.

We have some very sedate opening credits showing Persian statues, pottery and a star shaped puzzle box engulfed in flames. Then we have the nightmare of the female lead called Diana, she has a nightmare about the car crash she survived but which killed her parents, while that’s happening she has decided to climb to the roof of her dorm and her boyfriend Greg follows her. Greg thinks she has jumped off the roof and we get a bad attempt at a jump scare when her foot touches his neck.

I predict that Diana will wish that she died in the car crash, meaning everybody will be alive and well at the end of the film.

Diana is a TA in a mythology class, her boyfriend is a student in her class, yeah we all know he wants her for one thing the answers. So she is doing some extra stuff at the museum with the Teacher, nothing kinky even though Jason Connery so wants to. I find Jason's performance in most of his films to be awful and very creepy, no change there then.

While waiting for Jason to arrive Diana checks out the Persian puzzle box, this is all starting to remind me of Hellraiser, but with a magic eye puzzle; what Diana needs is a fatty-boom-batty blunt! And I guarantee she'll be seeing a sailboat, an ocean, and maybe even some of those big-tittied mermaids doing some of that lesbian shit!

She sees the button to open the box, pulls out the ruby and rubs it, this is a first the ruby does not get broken at the start. Jason arrives wants to take her to dinner, but is denied. Diana leaves and he is left alone and wouldn't you know it the Djinn arrives, the Djinn in this film is now played by John Novak in make up, but will also be played by Jason, oh the joy.

I figure the fact the stone was found in a puzzle box could explain the difference of Djinn in this and the fourth film. It's sad that horror monsters aren’t played by the same actor, Robert Englund stuck with the franchise to the very end, he was right not to come back for the reboot, but his Freddy was and will always be the best.

Jason knows who the Djinn is and says he doesn't want anything but the Djinn blackmails him into wishing, so he wishes for the two most beautiful girls to want him and be there, Djinn obliges and then Jason is sliced to pieces by the girls and the Djinn takes his face so he can walk around. Meanwhile Diana is hanging with her friend who is telling her that her boyfriend will leave her if she doesn't change and then she gets the vision of Jason's death so goes to investigate.

So far I have to say this film is better then the second film and slightly closer to the first so that’s good but the downside is as it is a 15 rated film we only see tits and no real gore.

Diana's friend has sex with boyfriend in public after scaring her boyfriend with a bull head, perhaps that is a set up for later, or maybe I’m expecting too much from this film. Diana knows all about the mythology and what the box and stone are and asks her boyfriend to trust her and tells him everything, but Greg needs to know if she loves him and why she won't get help for her issues and leaves.

Jason is trying to get info about Diana but can't get it so gets the registrar to make a wish, she wishes all the files would go up in flames which ruins his plan to find Diana that way. Diana has a research montage and is late for class. Djinn Jason teaches class telling the class that the Greek gods were Djinn and that the Trojan war was due to the Djinn because Helen of Troy wished to be loved by everybody, what a selfish bitch.

Well wouldn't you know it the College is putting on the play Faust wow isn't that subtle, Jason is tricked in going to a girls room believing he will find Diana but finds Melissa who wants to have sex with Jason, so he leaves and heads to Diana's room where Greg confronts Jason and we get a bad morph job on Jason's face so Greg now believes and runs to find Diana and takes her to church but Jason is there.

We finally get some gross gore and and bad make up effects as a girl becomes thinner, so Diana wishes for her pain to stop and then wishes for the Arc Angel Michael to fight the Djinn, Diana is about to take Michael into her but Greg pushes her out of the way, he and the Djinn fight and Michael barely wins and runs off with Diana. Melissa still wants the professor and wishes for him to break her heart. While Michael and Diana hide in the theatre and he has a go at her for releasing the Djinn.

We get another wish and death, while Diana tries to block the visions from the Djinn, they talk to each other through the visions straight to camera. Diana tries to wield Michael's Flaming sword but gets burnt, so Michael heals her by blowing on her, now that one hell of a blow job. Diana's Friend Katie runs when she sees her boyfriend and then Jason and hides in an animal research lab, phone's Diana and wishes for somewhere to hide and is forced into a cage with rats.

Michael and Jason fight again and Michael cuts off the Djinn's hand but he just grows another, Michael and Diana drive off but Jason jumps on top they continue to fight but then we have a car crash just like the start of the film and she saves Michael before the car explodes. Jason has some dodgy body reforming, which looks like they copied the transformation for Judge Doom into the crazy toon at the end of WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT?

Diana jumps off a building saying that if the waker dies before the last wish he looses, but Jason grabs her arm, Michael throws the sword and she stabs Jason and they both fall the Djinn dies. Michael thanks her and resurrects her she and Greg are back together and she tells him she loves him.

This film was way better then the the second, but that’s not hard that was a complicated mess of a film which didn't make sense; this film owes a lot to the teen horror films like SCREAM and I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER. Jason Connery is well cast as the villain and is very good at sleazy and creepy, the only real problem is that the deaths are nothing like what you have come to expect of the WISHMASTER they are very tame and the effects are very poor.

Though the film was closer to the original in plot, if you came in half way though you would probably think it was a typical teen slasher film, it was very dull and dragged, of course not as much as the second, but that movie felt like the Machine in THE PRINCESS BRIDE, I think it took a year from my life. Thankfully there is only one more movie in this franchise left.

Saturday 13 August 2011

WISHMASTER 2: Evil Never Dies (1999)

Movie and TV Mistress back again with another WISHMASTER film, this time it's WISHMASTER 2: Evil Never Dies (1999)

This film didn't even come out at the cinema it premièred on cable and went to DVD which is now out of print, that bodes well for this sequel doesn't it. At least Andrew Divoff returned to play the Djinn, sadly KNB effects didn't return to do the make up or effects.

The Movie starts very quickly we see Robert England's collection then thieves stealing items, guards try to stop them by shooting and wouldn't you know it they shoot the statue with the Djinn Ruby in it and a Thief takes the ruby, that thief is shot by a guard but it's fine, apparently bullets are attracted to the Djinn and so the ruby was shot and damaged the thief is revealed to be a girl and is burnt by the ruby. Her Boyfriend is shot, she kisses him and runs off leaving the broken ruby behind, the Djinn breaks loose and gets Eric to make a wish, he wishes he had never been born, we get some dodgy morphing effects and bad CGI with the Djinn.

The cops arrive, it is not Robert Englunds house from the first one it looks like a museum or gallery, a cop finds the Djinn who now appears to have horns, the cop tells him to freeze so the Djinn freezes the cop. The other cops arrive and the Djinn has turned into his human form from the first movie. Meanwhile Morgana the girl who got burnt by the ruby is having a bit of a hissy fit and mental breakdown, she seems surprised that her boyfriend was shot asking why...well lets see, you break in and steal stuff in America you are bound to be shot at, tut tut tut.

The Detective is questioning the Djinn and getting no where and the Djinn was unable to get him to make a wish but in the cell he gets a tough guy to wish and of course Morgana is connected to the Djinn and dreams about his victims. We have our first gory death and Morgana goes to church and see a priest played by Paul Johansson (Dan Scott from ONE TREE HILL). Morgana believes the Djinn is the Devil, I can see how she made that mistake he has horns and gives people what they want for their souls, yeah the Djinn and Devil so alike.

The Djinn is now in Prison and calls himself the Wishmaster, how to slip the title in. An inmate who is wrongly imprisoned asks the Djinn to put his lawyer though the pain and suffering he's been through and the lawyer shows up to say he can get him out and all the charges dropped but then is folded in half and rocked back and fourth, in a very comedic way.

Morgana has a nightmare again and does some research on the statue the ruby was in and so time for that history lesson. She is unsure if Eric is dead and here is a plot hole that bugged me from the start, Eric wished he was never born therefore no one should remember him and the Djinn would have no connection to Morgana and the incident may not have happened so this whole movie is a paradox.

Morgana explains everything to the priest who tells her to confess and find piece. She goes in search of the Djinn and goes to the prison to meet him, while another inmate asks the Djinn to get him out of jail, he is Russian and says “you are the devil and will give things for my soul.” Morgana speaks with the Djinn but doesn't get any real information. More inmates ask for stuff from him, which pisses off the big guy in the prison, who asks to get wasted and is beaten up by his twin martial arts bodyguards.

Morgana has more back story of the Djinn and talks it all out with the Priest who then offers to meet the Djinn with her and try to help, the priest discovers that the Djinn is not of this world and then we have the required shower scene where the Djinn scares her. The Priest explains the prophecy and then says he now believes in the Devil, I thought if you were a priest you'd believe in the devil as it's in the bible, he believes in god why not the devil till now; The priest wants Morgana and isn't hiding it.

The priest and Morgana have a plan and that’s to not make any wishes, Morgana cuts off her little finger and returns the stolen art work as well as confess in church. This movie is boring and the finger thing makes no sense and there is still 40 minutes to go, I wish it would end already, at least the first one was gross and funny there is no real scares or horror in this boring film.

The guard that hates the Djinn wishes he could slow dance with him alone Compton style, he regrets it when he see the Djinn in its real form, yet again we see nothing. The guard is now the Djinn , the Russian prisoner and the Djinn both escape. The Djinn has got as many souls as he can in prison but requires more, apparently 800 souls. Morgana finds the Djinn in the Russian mob club and shoots him, he tells her that she will make her 3 wishes and she runs off scared.

The Russian shoots Morgana thinking he can stop the Djinn but she is uninjured, the Djinn is in Vegas getting more souls and calls Morgana using the Russians voice telling her to fly to Vegas and stop the Djinn. The Priest finds the incantation to put the Djinn back in the ruby, they get closer and make out, there's a priest with principles. The Djinn reforms the ruby as he now has enough souls. Everybody in the Casino is winning and loosing their souls.

Morgana wishes that the Djinn be gone forever and be back in the stone but he can not grant these wishes, The Priest wishes that he go back to his hell and they all end up in the stone and the priest is on a cross, so she has her first wish. They end up back at the Casino and the owner wishes to see it all come to an end, god so do I. We get a bizarre scene with cards and roulette wheels attacking people, frogs and locusts.

Morgana wishes that the guard she shot was alive and takes god into her soul and says the incantation and everybody's soul is expelled, I really hope this is over soon. It ends with what’s meant to be the last scare of the Djinn staring at camera inside the stone, Barney the Dinosaur is scarier.

That movie was Awful, Boring and made no sense; as I said earlier it contains a paradox and other plot holes, like why does he now need 800 souls when he didn't in the first and why does she cut off her little finger. I know this film was made for TV but only showing 2 deaths at the start and having the rest take pace off camera made this film unscary and boring, it did not need to be 95 minutes long so much could be cut to make this a better paced film, not a better film though.

I guess it's on to the next WISHMASTER film, maybe it will be better, sadly Andrew Divoff does not return.

Monday 8 August 2011


Movie and TV Mistress back again with another Horror Franchise, this time it's WISHMASTER.

I actually remember seeing this at the cinema, as it came out in May 1998 in the UK. I do know I found it funny more then scary back then, I wonder if I still feel the same way, has this laughable film improved with age?

Directed by Robert Kurtzman, a founding member of KNB effects who have worked on EVIL DEAD films and lots of other horror films including the recent Zombie series THE WALKING DEAD. This was his second time directing, his first being THE DEMOLITIONIST (1995), think ROBCOP with out the robot, it sounds hilarious and I will now be looking for it.

On with this film, which if you don't know is about a Djinn which is a Genie unlike Robin Williams or Jeannie from I DREAM OF JEANNIE. The movie opens with a Gem being cast, the McGuffin of the film. Next we have a long scroll about the history of the Djinn, narrated by Angus Scrimm (The Tall Man from PHANTASM). We hear a man in Persia wishing to be shown all the wonders of the world, a man is made part of a wall and looks just like Han Solo in Carbonite.

OK I’m less then 5 minutes in and I’m already laughing, it kind of reminds me of ARMY OF DARKNESS, the Type face is the same and it seems to have a similar film quality. I do wonder, what was it about the 90's which made movies so self referential We get to see lots of great make up effects which KNB are excellent at. We have a guy with a weird alien like creature popping out of his chest which bites a woman, next we have a man's skeleton escape his skin and attack people and another man turned into a snake. The wizard to the sultan tells him not to make any more wishes and then traps the Djinn in the red ruby which is then encased in a statue for safe keeping.

It's a hell of an opening for a movie and sets the mood for the rest of the film, which to me like HOUSE it is a horror comedy.

We flash forward to present day and Robert Englund (Freddy Kruger) and Ted Raimi (Joxer the Mighty) are at a dock receiving a shipment of the very statue the McGuffin ruby is in and of course a crew guy is drunk and drops the crate with the statue on Ted's head. Ted always dies in horror films in the funniest ways.

The statue is broken and the ruby is exposed and a dock guy takes it to an auction house for appraisal. we are introduced to Alex the heroine of the film, who doesn't want to date a hot guy (Josh) who fancies her. OK so Alex is a gem expert at the Auction house and just happens to have a Genie bottle like that in I DREAM OF JEANNIE in her office, see you can't take this movie seriously. Alex rubs the gem and we get a jump scare of her boss being right beside her, she takes the gem to Josh to check it further.

Ah set up for the finale battle between Alex and the Djinn, she tells a girl basket ball team they need stillness. While Josh uses a laser scan on the Gem and releases the Djinn who kills him by wishing for the pain to cease. Alex feels the pain and death of every victim and is connected to the Djinn. The Djinn creature grows and gets stronger with every wish.

This movie has so many horror actor cameo's Reggie Bannister from the PHANTASM films is a pharmacist and Buck Flower who plaid Red Thomas the Bum in BACK TO THE FUTURE again plays a bum. They argue and The bum wishes for Reggie to die.

Meanwhile Alex is upset and her sister doesn't believe her visions, Shannon thinks Alex is just having nightmares, which is true she is having nightmares about the Djinn. Alex investigates where the Gem came from and meets Robert Englund and gets some history and advise while the Djinn gets a human face and blinds a medical student. Alex meets a folklore professor who explains the plot and how the Djinn works, while we have more silly jump scares just to keep the audience on their toes.

We have a montage of Alex reading about the Djinn's history and more exposition. While the Djinn goes to her boss to find out where Alex lives, and on the Boss's Desk has a classic Genie Lamp like that is Aladdin. More smoking from both Alex and the Djinn, meanwhile the Djinn puts the Gem back together so he can bring more of his kind into the world, bit like the dark overlords in HOWARD THE DUCK, which is funny since the Djinn sounds just like the possessed Dr Jennings.

Alex goes to the professor again but it's very obvious that the Djinn has taken over her body or something, it's very red riding hood. Alex gets a free wish and wishes the Djinn to blow his brains out which he does but he cannot die, she then wishes to know what he is and is then trapped in the Gem being chased by her fears. Alex wishes her second official wish and we have a scream moment with the house phone.

Alex heads to Robert's party where the final battle will take place and is stopped by Tony Todd (Candy Man), she gets in and the Djinn gets Tony to try and escape a water tank and tricks Robert into wishing that his party was like that at the start of the film. Alex promises that she won't wish and runs way but the Djinn makes the soldier statues come to life and attack her and traps her sister in a burning painting. So she wishes that the Dock worker had not been drinking on the job 2 days earlier so everyone including Ted Raimi is safe and sound and Alex asks Josh out on a date.

So that was WISHMASTER it was still as funny as I remember and gross and the make-up effects were just as good as you would expect from KNB. As a Director Robert Kurtzman didn't do a bad job, this film definitely deserved the 18 rating for the Make-up and effects alone, more so then HOUSE. I would not tell you to go out of your way and watch this film, but if you like 90's self referential horror and seeing loads of classic horror actors meet horrific ends in a movie you might enjoy this just for a laugh, plus I’m sure there are some fun drinking games you can have with this film.

Can you guess what comes next?