Wednesday, February 21, 2018

MAD FOXES (1981) (Full Moon DVD Review)

MAD FOXES (1981) 

Label: Full Moon Features
Region Code: Region-Free
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 80 Minutes
Audio: English Dolby Digital Stereo 2.0, Surround 5.1 (No Subtitles)
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1)

Director: Paul Grau
Cast: Jose Gras, Laura Premica, Andrea Albani, Peter John Saunders, Ana Roca

Mad Foxes comes to us from legendary Swiss exploitation producer Erwin C. Dietrich who worked with euro-cult favorite Jess Franco's on several of the director's most notorious films, these include Jack the Ripper, and Barbed Wire Dolls. While this is not a Franco film it is even more demented and frenzied than his work, a trashy and overly offensives Nazi biker action flick that must be seen to be believed! 

I won't call the lead Hal (Jose Gras, Lucio Fulci's Conquest) a hero, because a hero is probably not a forty-something man who takes a teenage girl out to a cheesy disco on her eighteenth birthday to get her drunk in hopes of deflowering her. That's not quite a hero, but he is our main man, just not a very good one, but he is one with a sweet looking Corvette Stingray, so all is forgiven I guess. Earlier in the night Hal and his date are harassed by a group of Nazi bikers at a stoplight, leading to the death of one of the bikers who crashes into a parked car while chasing the Stingray through the streets. When the couple emerge from the disco later that night they find the Nazi bikers have been waiting for them to avenge the death of their friend, they beat the snot out of Hal, helpless to do anything he watches one of the bikers jackhammer-rape his date, ruining his chance to deflower her himself, which really does seem to me to be his motivation for revenge.

The next day the tenderized Hal calls in a favor to a friend who conveniently runs a karate school, who along with his karate-kicking students meets Hal at an abandoned coliseum where the bikers are holding a funeral pyre for their fallen friend. Hal announces his arrival yelling "Sons of bitches, here I am!" and some hilariously bad choreographed fighting ensues, ending with the effeminate leader of the biker gang having his dong cut-off and stuffed down his throat! 

Now keep in mind were are only about twenty minutes in and this thing is just getting started, a madcap slice of trash cinema that has our main guy bedding another broad within moments of the avenging showdown at the coliseum, what a guy! Far from being over the surviving bikers head on over to the karate school and toss a grenade into the gymnasium, those who don't die in the initial blast are mowed down in a hail of gunfire. 

Unaware of all this Hal meets another woman who has just fucked her boyfriend on a beach not minutes before, but she hitches a ride with Hal anyway, leaving her befuddled boyfriend in the dust! Hal takes this wholesome gal to his parents house out in the country, they shack up for the night, having sex in an unhealthy bathtub of discolored water - looking like Hal might have had a diarrhea discharge. The next day they ride some horses through the countryside and fornicate some more, in their absence the bikers show up and slaughter Hal's family, discovering their mangled corpses Hal is none too pleased, and the cycle of fucking, fighting and avenging continues.

This one is a ripe slice of exploitation cinema, it has absolutely no redeeming value other than the never ending carnage and an abundance of nudity, including plenty of full-frontal from Mr. Eric Falk, the guy's schlong really should be credited on the movie poster. The madcap action and inappropriateness of this one makes for a fun watch, it's never boring and the bad/hilarious English dubbing adds another layer of cheese to the already nacho-friendly viewing. Main man (remember, not a hero) Hal as played by Jose Gras is wonderful, falling somewhere in between Charles Bronson in Death Wish 2 (1982) and Robert Ginty from The Exterminator (1980), his hammy, tortured looking facial expressions are worth the price of admission alone, a rubber-faced eye-roller with the charm of a pervy car salesman.  

Audio/Video: Mad Foxes (1981) arrives on anamorphic widescreen DVD from Full Moon Features, sourced from producer Erwin C. Dietrich's original negative for the film. Like the Jess Franco films that Full Moon have been releasing from the Dietrich library the image looks good, there's some unmolested film grain present throughout, the image looks soft at times, there's also some white speckling and a huge vertical scratch in one scene in particular, but otherwise this is a nice looking standard definition presentation. I hope this eventually comes to Blu-ray at some point the same way that the Jess Franco films have. The disc includes option of both Dolby Digital stereo and surround English-dubbing, the 5.1 is the better and more robust sounding of the options, the better to hear the corny dubbed dialogue and a pair of songs from 80's rockers Krokus!     

Onto the extras we get a 23-minute making of interview with actors Helmi Sigg, Eric Falk and producer Erwin C. Dietrich. Sigg starts it off speaking about his love of Universal monster movies and always wanting to be in the movies, which happened when he met director Paul Grau who cast him in Island Women (1980), also speaking about the free-wheeling and improvisational nature of Grau in contrast to Dietrich's more orderly approach to producing. Sigg even brings along his WWII bomber pilot cap he wore so memorably in the film. Also brought up is how they had to remove the Nazi swastika from their Nazi biker outfits for the outdoor scenes as the swastika had been banned in Germany at the time. Falk himself also speaks about the unrestrained way he created his character, comparing the over-the-top nature of the films to the antics from the Muppet's Pigs In Space, with Sigg saying the characters were shallow and without depth, described Falk's character as King Kong, a big ape who was also a bodyguard on-set, which was his former profession, he even tells a story of how he attributes being cast in Mad Foxes as saving his life, when his job as a body guard put him up against a group of Hell's Angel's bikers he invited then to join in on Mad Foxes. Sigg also speaks about the difficulty of driving the light dirt bikes on the city streets, how they were not quite the Harley's he had envisioned. Producer Dietrich only chimes in for brief moment or two, he's an older guy here and seems a bit lost in the conversation, though he does speak about director Paul Grau bringing the project to him, saying the movie was so bad he couldn't even watch it at the time, but now finds it quite funny, discussing the cinema success and eventual banning of film on VHS, clarifying his stance on cutting films, which he is clearly against in anyway. The actors discussing various infamous scenes, such as the death on the toilet of Falk's character and the grisly nurse-gutting scene Sigg's character did. The interview comes to as Falk's confesses he visited a lot of whore houses in Barcelona and ended up with a case of gonorrhea, and Sigg saying that the effeminate Nazi bikers-leader was a real-life Nazi and had to be threatened with violence to stop spouting propaganda at the hotel they were staying in.   

Falk again shows up for a solo interview, again relaying the anecdotes about the Hell's Angels and his gonorrhea but in finer detail, the big guy also speaks about director Paul Grau, giving some running commentary on a slave/master scene from the film which is being played on a screen in the room, also commenting on his own phase of sexual dominance and submission. The disc also includes a trailer for the film. 

The single-disc release comes housed in a standard DVD keepcase with a one-sided sleeve of artwork featuring a variation of the illustration I've seen on the Illusions Unlimited German Mediabook release of the film - though this version is censored, the Nazi dominatrix breasts are covered with a purple halter top, and the ass of the woman is the lower left hand corner is obscured by a a superimpose dark spot, the cover art also wraps around and continues on the spine. I wish they would have done reversible artwork on this one with an uncensored image. The uncensored image of the topless Nazi dominatrix can be seen on the special features menu of the disc. 

Special Features:
- Scum of the Earth: The Making of Mad Foxes (23 min)
- Stiletto's Song: Interview with Actor Eric Falk (9 min)
- Trailer (3 min)
- Full Moon Trailer: Caged Women (1 min), Ravenwolf Towers (1 min), Blood of a Thousand Virgins (1 min), Babes Behind Bars (1 min), Trophy Heads (2 min), Badass Mothafuckas (1 min) 

Mad Foxes (1981) is a super sleazy and action-packed slice of trash cinema, we get loads of nudity with plenty of amped-up violence and a veneer of cheesiness that when combined with the corny English dubbing makes for a stupendous watch, the level of cartoon violence onscreen here is off the charts, tasteless exploitation fans and trash-cinema lovers take note - this is a must-see!  

No comments:

Post a Comment