“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds."
Thursday, September 25, 2014
Ax 'Em (1992)
How bad is it? It's abysmal dreck. Should you see it? If you have a really strong stomach for badness, it's worth a watch.
The sound quality sadly matches the visual quality.
This was made about 1980, but not released for a decade, when someone decided that it was so terrible that it should get better known. You know you're in for something different when the credits explain how to pronounce the director's name, but this is a sub-Andy Milligan film, shot on a camcorder in ambient light so nothing's visible and with the tiny omnidirectional microphone in early camcorders, so the dialogue is all indistinct. Once you get past those technical flaws, you have the editing, where scenes fade out and fade in randomly and a scene where a girl runs away is accidentally shown twice consecutively. The plot has a killer that legend says will return in 13 years - why is never said, why 13 years?, return from where? - and he does, killing off people with what generally looks like a light tap. There is no titular ax (there is a small hatchet or meat cleaver in one scene), the "urban" version of "Ask Them" has no bearing to the plot, either, except that the cast (and crew) is almost entirely black. The funniest scene, if you're not thoroughly bored, has a character obviously scared, because his glasses bounce up and down, as if shaking violently.