FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE, so beware yon spoilers!

Jul 8, 2009

Alright, but can I go with someone else?

Oh. My. Crapping. Crap.

Once upon a recent time I bought a copy of the most perverse, most bestest Bigfoot movie ever, Night of the Demon, via yon Internette. The seller was so effing amazing that he/she/they included a free bonus DVD- the 1981 slasher Don't Go in the Woods...Alone!. Well, my friends, I watched that bonus DVD tonight and...again I say, oh my crapping crap. I think I'm in love.

Right away I had an inkling that I was gonna be in for a treat, as the film proclaimed itself "Spectacular Entertainment".

I don't want to keep you in suspense: they weren't lying.

As best as I could discern, the plot goes something like this: some tools go camping for some reason, a bunch of random people wander around the woods, most of them die, and then the killer gets killed. It sounds totally by the numbers, right? Well, fret not, friendos, for the true delights of Don't Go in the Woods are in the deets*.

Not only is DGitW entirely dubbed, it also boasts the worst acting in the history of ever. EVARRRR. I'm not kidding. Here's a simple math equation to help you grasp the depths of awfulness acheived: think of the worst acting you've ever seen in a movie. Now take out your science calculator and multiply that bad acting by a million. The result will still only be roughly two-thirds as atrocious as what you'll witness in DGitW. These actors defy all logic; I understand that acting is indeed an art and not everyone will excel at said art, was as if these people had never spoken before. At all. Their inflections were off, they were stressing the wrong words, repeating words over and's truly SPECTACULAR ENTERTAINMENT.

"Do you know? At this verrrrminnit. I am missing. As the World TURNS?"

"How do you tell. The rabid from the. UNRABID?"

Don't Go in the Woods is populated with countless random characters, most of whom don't have any lines, never mind a name or a reason for existing. Take, for example, this woman, who is hiking in the woods with her photographer son/friend/weirdo person, who is there to shoot photos of a train.

A train which makes a stop.

In the woods.

We don't see the train, but we hear a train whistle, so I'm sure it was really there.


Or this broad, who doesn't say a word but is clearly cooler than you or I will ever be.

See, she's out in the woods a-paintin'. Mind you, she's not exactly painting what she sees, but who am I to judge? Art is feeling, man, and it ain't safe.

Like most other hikers, Coolie Painter falls victim to...something. Or someone. Up until this point, the stalking sequences progressed like this:
  1. There is no ambient noise, but a character says "What was that??" and looks off-screen.
  2. Cut to a shot of a moving tree branch, while the character says "Aah!"
  3. Cut to a shot of the character, bloody and dead.
What was killing these poor nameless fools? Was it the branches themselves? Was it a bear? Suicide? The first real clue flashed before my eyeballs during Coolie Painter's death: as best as I could figure, it was a knife-wielding Sasquatch who was responsible for all the murdering!

I figured wrong. Much later, after many a sequence wherein we follow people walking through the woods and they're suddenly killed by something just out of frame, the culprit is revealed: it's a wackadoo mountain man, apparently the offspring of Captains Caveman and Lou Albano! He's a right filthy kookadook with a penchant for wearing Mardi Gras beads on his face and poking people- poking them TO DEATH- with sticks.

The music is as horrendous as the acting, a thunking and constantly repeating Casio soundtrack featuring swells that build to nothing and stings present for no reason. The less said about the end credits music (set to the tune of "The Teddy Bears Picnic", featuring lyrics such as "Don't go into the woods tonight, you probably will be killed..."), the better.

Were the last twenty minutes of Don't Go in the Woods...Alone! not so damn padded- and they really were- I'd probably be proclaiming this film to be the love of my life. It's gloriously, uproariously inept filmmaking at its other words, it's SPECTACULAR ENTERTAINMENT.

As further proof of my assertions, I'd like to provide you with some screencaps from the sequence where the cuckoo nutso cave dude decapitates the wheelchair-bound hiker, but my computer has had enough of this shitty movie and freezes up when I try to play it. My computer has such high standards, you see.

YES I SAID A WHEELCHAIR-BOUND HIKER. He made the mistake of wheeling into the woods...alone!

*That's young folk talk for "details"...once again, I strive to prove my youthful vigor, my "with it-ness", and my relevance.


Hud said...

This film transcends so bad it's good lore but my merciful memory has wiped most of it out, I only now remember the squawking woman in the VW Camper that goes over the cliff.

...And that Mary Gail Artz who played one of the two main women, is a big time casting director in Hollywood now!

Anonymous said...

I heart (and have missed) your reviews.

Verdant Earl said...

Sounds awesome, but I'm more intrigued by Night of the Demon.

An awesome Bigfoot movie that I have never heard of? What the what?

At first I thought you were talking about the classic British horror flick from the 50's (also known as Curse of the Demon), but nay!

It doesn't appear to be on DVD. I. Must. Own. NOW!!! Waah.

Richard Doyle said...

There's a whole chapter in Stephen Thrower's "Nightmare USA" about James Bryan, the director of this film as well as the indescribably crappy "Executioner II". That book is so awesome it almost rubs off on anything and anyone in it.

Anonymous said...

This sounds amazing. Will definitely check this one out.

Stacie Ponder said...

Night of the Demon is sooooo sleazy and unbelievable...I've got to do a proper review one of these days. There's a scene where Bigfoot makes two KNIFE-WIELDING GIRL SCOUTS STAB EACH OTHER TO DEATH that's so amazing I can only write about it in all caps.

Thanks,'s nice to have time to watch and write again!

Carole McDonnell said...

I loooove your sense of humor.

rob! said...

Is that Richard Kiel as Bigfoot? He always got stuck with those roles...

Stacie Ponder said...

Dude, if that was Richard Kiel, Don't Go in the Woods and I would be down at the Justice of the Peace right now so the movie could make an honest woman of me.

Richard Doyle said...

The British "Night of the Demon" is available of DVD:

michael said...

What I always thought was weird about Night of the Demon is that there's another great bigfoot movie called Demonwarp too. Since when was bigfoot a demon?

Frey said...

Oh Stacie, this is why I love you. You have to promise never to stop reviewing stuff like this. Promise me right now, woman!

SkaryMoviez said...

This movie is brilliant. I get a warm and fuzzy feeling in my stomach every time I watch it. Anyone else have a crush on the blond haired cop? I think he's dreamy ::sigh::

Anonymous said...

Hiker's on roller skates, hikers in wheelchairs?? Why have i not seen this movie? Clearly, a comedy classic.

forestofthedead said...

Awesome movie. Great review.