Saturday, April 28, 2012

Black Roses or when life hands you a rose...paint it black!

Black Roses
Director: John Fasano

Lovely Hair!! 

Heavy metal and horror films, two great tastes that go great together. And both can equally piss your parents off. So it was only a matter of time when metal and horror would climb into bed and make a hybrid love child. Such is the result with Black Roses. Though in this case I think you might want to put this one back in the oven its not quiet ready yet.

The cast is well rounded. Julie Adams is great as the town`s "moral compass" playing a Tipper Gore type character, who speaks for all the concerned members of the community. Ms. Adams is best know as the Gill Mans favorite female victim. Like always shes wonderful and gives her all. She gives the film a touch of class and on a personal note it was very cool to have met her in person. Another notable cast member is Vincent Pastore who would later be famous for playing "Big Pussy" in The Sopranos" He has a cool death scene. Die hard classic rock fans will also know Carmine Appice from "Vanilla Fudge" as a member of the "Black Roses" This film has plenty of big head banging hair that would put every member of Poison to shame. But hey it the 80s, you can practically smell the hair spray while watching it.

Trick or treat? Look at these cheesy masks.
The film is working on a lower budget but every dollar seems to have gone on the screen. Props go to the slick camera work and atmosphere that gives the film a needed boost.  Heavy metal fans might hate me but I never was a big fan of hair metal and don't get me started on ballads. The music is pretty cheesy and fills very dated. The music in Black Roses would have its skull crushed in by bands like Slayer and Cannibal Corpse.
 This is a pretty cool concept, with the hysteria over metal and the so called "hidden demonic messages" There seems to be a clear vision in mind yet this rose seems like it could have used some pruning. Many scenes could have been either shorted or taken out all together. Great example is at one point we watch our hero in the film pump gas, I mean really?  To the films credit there are some lovely lady boobs for the audience to look at. I was really hoping Linnea Quigley would pop up with a chainsaw and destroy all the demons in all her curvy glory. But alas this never happened Though i think every film could be fixed by having Quigley.

This film is seriously lacking the gore one would expect for the prince of darkness. I mean come on, heavy metal is tailor made for bloody gut spewing brain smashing massacres. Just take a page out of the book of Alice Cooper or better yet Gwar! Black Roses may have thorns but they don't seem to prick anybody, at least not enough to draw any serious blood.

The demon effects towards the end (because it takes that long to get to demons) has more cheese then a large Papa Johns, and they come off looking more funny then scary. Seems like a High School student did the make up and creature effects. Sorry but there bad. Though it was kinda funny to see a demon get kicked in the nuts? I guess demons have them, I`m not sure? I never give away an ending but don't expect much. The message of Black Roses is that the parents were right all along and that heavy metal is corrupting our youth. Seems funny that a horror film would take that kind of stand.

Now maybe had I grown up with hair metal I may have found a certain charm in the music and the big hair. But all I see is a very tired and dated film  that has less violence then an episode of CSI. With such a neat idea its a shame that more could not have been done to make this more entertaining.  I guess if your looking for a campy, cheese fest eighties style you could do alot worse but sorry to say I think this concert would be worth ditching.

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