The Velocipastor – 2019 Porno – 2019 Jiu Jitsu – 2020

The Velocipastor
Written and Directed by Brendan Steere
Starring Gregory James Cohan, Alyssa Kempinski, Daniel Steere, Aurelio Voltaire, Yang Jiechang, Jesse Turitis

The key to watching this movie is to understand it’s intended to be somewhere in between The Naked Gun series and The Room. The difference is it is lacking the intelligence of the former and has too much self-awareness for of the latter. We have intentionally bad special effects, including the cutaway editing cards left in for intended amusement. There is the acting intended to be bad by actors who aren’t good enough to make that funny. There are the severely limited locations used to the point where it’d be easy enough to clean after filming for the day. Then there is a story meant only to cobble together the words “velociraptor” and “pastor.”

This had been a passion project for writer / director Steere, who found a donor for the budget after two failed Kickstarter campaigns. His inspiration for the film is said to be Guillermo Del Toro. I don’t see it, but I never looked real hard. The Velocipastor is not a bad film, for what is intended. There is even a good song on the soundtrack, I Didn’t Even Have Time To Think by Math the Band. The sequence is intentionally befouled by a collage of imagery that is intended to be ironically funny.

It is best for people who gave up looking for good films long ago, then decided good camp is the way to move forward in life. There are jokes in here that will land, depending on your level of encyclopedic movie knowledge, then there are other jokes that get better after consumption of drugs or alcohol.

This viewer didn’t have a big enough party watching with him to get more out of it. It was a recommendation from a friend, and I think I would have liked it more if I had watched it with him and a few others.

(**1/2 out of *****)
Available on Amazon Prime

Porno
Director Keola Racela
Screenplay Matt Black, Laurence Vannicelli
Starring Evan Daves, Larry Saperstein, Jillian Mueller, Glenn Stott, Robbie Tann, Katelyn Pearce, Bill Phillips

First of all, this is not a real pornographic film. The film that is played within the film isn’t even that pornographic. It is closer to a soft core snuff film. The story has a group of kids running a small town theater in the mid-90’s spending their off hours watching a film, with the owner’s blessing. The owner is going to be away for a bit, so he hands over the reins, thinking they will choose one of the two films (Encino Man or A League of Their Own).

Everyone in the film starts out repressed, to varying degrees. It takes the literal breaking of a wall to discover that there is more to this theater than the kids understand. In this newly discovered alcove, they discover many strange things, including mysterious films. They play one of them and it turns out to be the key to releasing a succubus that could destroy them all.

Porno is not a bad film, for the project it really feels like. The acting is better than the script. The effects are pretty decent. There are a few good songs sprinkled throughout, including a great one (Lookin’ Around Lately by David Baloche) in the credits I could not find anywhere for sale on the web.

There are a ton of penis shots in the film. Not sure what they are intended to add, especially when they seem to be coupled with traumas for the bodies to which they are attached. The title is absolutely horrible, when taken in context to the story of the film. The kids think there might be some T&A attached to the film, we get it, but it’s nothing like what they expect. Hell, they could have called it “Succubus” and made it easier for people to look up without getting some unwanted search engine traffic.

(**1/2 out of *****)
Available on Shudder

Jiu Jitsu
Director Dimitri Logothetis
Screenplay Dimitri Logothetis, James McGrath
Starring Alain Moussi, Frank Grillo, JuJu Chan, Tony Jaa, Nicolas Cage

While the premise seems exciting, this shitball of a film is a throwback to the Cannon films of the 80’s without the cocaine. The premise is a spaceship landing near a temple in Burma. A collection of fighters (varying weapons of different martial arts, but no one with any particular skill) go up against a bunch of other guys, then some alien force. Not one Jiu jitsu move. The talent in the credits is a smokescreen, as we spend too much time watching people we’ve never seen before and don’t really care about.

(0 stars out of *****)
Rented at Redbox

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