Thursday, October 20, 2011

Mind Ripper (1995)

After watching The Hills Have Eyes part II the only logical continuation would to watch the movie that first was planned to be part III, but before shooting began changed title and was rewritten to be Mind Ripper! And it might be a story about fucking around with genetics in an underground base, but it feels so damn much Hills Have Eyes that it's hard to see it as anything else than a twisted little sequel. My memories of this has always been quite on the bad side, but during the years I've started to appreciate DTV exploitation more and more and now I can say, without shame, that this is a quite entertaining flick, especially for us DTV-fans.

Lance Henriksen is Stockton, a scientist who together with his colleagues finds a body in the desert, a man nearly dead. They fill him with experimental drugs and medicines and makes him come alive again, miraculous getting better from his serious wounds. Stockton leaves the project and looks forward to a nice summer together with his teenager children, but need to drop by his old desert-facility. But without them knowing it, shit has hit the fan and man, called Thor, has escaped and is mutating to a almost unbeatable beast - killing off everyone that enters the underground base!

It might not seem like it on my little text above, but it's a perfect sequel to The Hills Have Eyes part II. "Thor" was probably a wounded member of the family, maybe Pluto, and of course the US government want to use a rare specimen like that to transform into a killer-soldier! And then we have the camping family, but this time with a plane instead of a van! Mind Ripper is a very cheap production. It looks cheap, the directing is quite everywhere possible and there's not specific style of the movie. It does not help that the UK DVD from Anchor Bay looks like someone ate the master and puked it up before putting it on disc.

But Mind Ripper succeeds in being a fun Alien-style rip-off with a mutant instead of an alien. The cheap interiors, probably a basement in Sofia, Bulgaria, somewhere, works better than expected and the cast is a lot better than this movie deserved in the first place. Lance Henriksen is not bad at all, especially in the scenes together with Giovanni Ribisi and Natasha Gregson Wagner as his children. Claire Stansfield is good also.

The highlight of Mind Ripper is the excellent make-up effects and the gore. The latter is not in any enormous amounts, but brutal and nasty - and it's always disgusting see someone tear off his toenail by mistake! A nice eye-stabbing and a few other blood-spurting scenes makes this a fun monster-romp.

Hardly a masterpiece, but I have a soft spot for direct-to-video productions that actually deliver some bloodshed and good acting, without any pretentions of being high art. I doubt the R2UK is the best version around, the picture seemed cropped - it was probably shot with 4:3 ratio in mind, but it's cheap anyway.

I guess the only way to go now is to watch The Hills Have Eyes 2, or what do you all say? :)

1 comment:

Explosive Action said...

I watched this a few months back and thought it was terrible. Poor Lance. And the boyfriend of his daughter was nauseating.