Monday, February 16, 2009

The Third Hand (1987)

1987 - The Third Hand (Rockport/Ferde Grofe Films)

[Onscreen title “The 3rd Hand”, also released as “Judgement Day”]

Director/Writer Ferde Grofé Jr Producers Ferde Grofé Jr, Keith Lawrence Executive Producer Guy F. Coombs Associate Producers Jack Weaver, Sidney Djano Associate Producer/Production Executive Joe Zucchero Cinematography Pete Warrilow Music Lucas Richman Music Coordinator Carl Pritzcat Editors Joe Zucchero, Wm. Schlueter Stills Rhual Victorino Assistant Camera Danny Viray Mike Boom Fredo Sabile Sound Recordist Juanito Clemente Post Production Supervisor Wm. Schlueter Assistant Dubbing Editor Randall Crissman Assistant Foley Editor Jeanne Slater Production Designer Rodell Cruz Art Director Roy Lachica Special Makeup Design Evan Brainard Production Coordinator Jaime dela Rosa Assistant Director Herman Robles Unit Manager Nick Arguelles Assistant Production Manager Nelson Robles 2nd Assistant Director Norberto Ricahuerta Script Supervisor Tess Crisostomo Production Secretary Alice Garcia Budget Supervisor Nanette Zucchero 2nd Unit Cinematography Manolo Abaya Negative Cutter Lillian Best Special Effects Romeo Marbitol, Nestor Yadeo, Freddie Manalo, Alberto Mabitol, Willie Morales, Virgilio Terado Wardrobe Eric Pineda, Levy Papon, Alejandra Aguilar, Sonsayda Toyong Makeup Amparo Carolina, Violy Puzon, Lita Raagas Electrical Dante Fernadez, Melchor Abaya, Domeng Sagion Gaffers Johnny Cesogo, Ed Manipol, Tony Berin, Ding Suarez, Jovie Balut Camera Grip Mar Caitan

Cast Kenneth McLeod (Charlie Manners), David Anthony Smith (Pete Johnson), Monte Markham (Sam Flaherty), Gloria Hayes (Maria), Peter Mark Richman (Father Dominic), Cesar Romero (Octavio), Jennifer Perez, Joko Diaz, Soji Sodeke, "Joe Mar"/Jose Mari Avellana (Juan Rodriguez the bus driver), Nigel Hogge (Frank Henry), Edmundo Gaerlan, Tita Munoz, Geraldine, Jenny Andrada, Brett Sargeant, [uncredited] Steve Alcarado (man at Octavio's deserted house) Stuntmen Mike Villareal, Steve Alcarado, Johnny Cleofe, Alan Robles, Mar Laydameo, Nelson Forte, [uncredited but listed on IMDB] Dean Raphael Ferrandini

WL Paynecraft’s review on the HorrorWatch website:

Judgement Day is a great little flick from the late 80’s, era of hair bands and proficient guitarists. Anyway, Judgement Day isn’t about this. It’s about some unlucky backpackers that get caught in a cursed Mexican town at the wrong time of the year. During this time, Satan and his evil minions run rampant on the streets lashing whips and torturing people. This “weekend of Hell” is more of a parallel universe then a bad time of year though and merely enduring it isn’t enough. You need to get out of town before it’s over or you are stuck there for another year. Not a good place to be.

Whilst there, our sojourners meet up with some hospitable “persons of interest” that appear to be stuck in this dimension on a permanent basis. These people give them a hand and explain some things to them, but our hikers are more or less on their own.

Man, do I dig this movie. The dialogue of the two main characters is hokey at times and some of their decisions don’t seem altogether realistic. Still, there’s something about it. There’s lots of tension and excitement. The concept behind the story is extremely intriguing to me. I like the concept that Hell is this actual geographic region and, in some rare cases, mortals can travel in and out of it, not unlike the world of Hades in Greek mythology. Of course there’s no guarantee that you can walk right back out once you walk in…

I could tell the budget wasn’t big by the caliber of actors, but they made it work. Hell was convincing and scary and miserable. Great atmosphere and scenery. It reminded me of a Full Moon flick in how they were able to stretch a dollar.

Overall, this is a “Wendigo Lazarus Paynecraft favorite”. No real gore, but pretty violent themes nonetheless. There is even a boob shot or two thrown in for good measure. The storyline is one of the most original that I’ve seen. I was never bored, though I was groaning a couple times at the hokey dialogue in the beginning. I give this movie 8 out of 10 old ladies that I couldn’t figure out the math on how old she really was.

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