Friday, June 30, 2017

Tales From The Quadead Zone

I've been putting off the two Chester Novell Turner films for to long now, and now is as good a time as any to watch them and write about them. His initial effort, Black Devil Doll From Hell really is an S.O.V. flick from hell-scenes that go on for to long, mountains and mountains of padding, horribly strange Casio synth keyboard music and a religious woman that would rather bang a puppet that resembles Rick James than an actual man. But enough about that, I'm here to get on with Tales From The Quadead Zone. The production values are the lowest of the low, and you can still tell that Chester put his heart into this, especially since I think this is much more entertaining than his first flick. It's a homemade anthology horror film with three stories to keep it going. It only clocks in at about 62 minutes, but that's all the time you need with Quadead Zone. It starts off with the mother talking to the ghost of her son "Bobby" and he hands her a mug (well, it sort of floats up to the counter in the kitchen, but it's implied that his ghost is handing it to her) and you see the imprint in one of the chairs in the living room, giving the illusion that he has some physical weight to him. That's impressive considering what little Chester was working with. This wrap-around is accompanied by two really out-there stories that the mother reads to "Bobby", and the whole thing has a really off atmosphere that I can't really explain. You just have to experience it for yourself.

    These title cards are horrendous. 

I'm impressed. A ghost giving his mom a mug, blowing on her hair, sitting in a chair. It's all so real.

There's eight of you, and there's only food for four. Someone is going to die, aren't they.

  No one is upset that fatty just blew away three of their family members. Wow.

You're damn right that was a strange tale.

Looks like your brother is dead. Time to leave him alone.

Who wrote the score, a potato?

A champagne glass in the shape of a boob. Classy.

Yeah, Oscar. Let's get the fuck on up out of here.

Of course he's naked, he's dead. And why would you dress your dead brother up as a clown?!

He's already dead, you can't kill him!

When the credits for Tales From The Quadead Zone start rolling, it blatantly states that there will be a sequel. Or there was supposed to be, but unfortunately Chester never got around to it. I would have loved to have seen a sequel, but this weird triple-story anthology is all we have, and I am really grateful for it. The final act is actually more touching than you could ever expect, considering what takes place in the last 15-20 minutes and the whole film just makes a full circle. That's one of the things that makes me happy about Quadead Zone is that it wraps itself up quite nicely and actually leaves you wanting to watch more. But 62 minutes is all we have. Chester, let's meet up sometime. I want to get some coffee.    

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