Friday, April 29, 2016

Cut And Run

Cut And Run (Amazon: Savage Adventure, Inferno In Diretta, Straight to Hell) Directed By Ruggero Deodato, Starring Michael Berryman (1985).

Skunkape and I used to assign each other DVD challenges, this film along with classics like Lipstick and Massacre in Dinosaur Valley were discovered for me that way. I defied him to sit through Birth Of A Nation as payment for some awful shit he forced me to watch, I can't remember exactly what it was and he didn't make it. This was in the olden days of Netflix DVDs, before streaming made everyone a spoiled jaded baby.

All I knew going in was that Cut & Run starred Richard Lynch and I was very nervous and apprehensive since Ruggero Deodato was in charge. After the first couple of seconds with Quencho (Michael Berryman) leading a team of deep river savages it had a dopey Cannon Group vibe, so I figured I could relax, unclench and not feel that I was about to be eyeball raped by animal snuff. It's chock full of celebs almost as many as a super demented episode of Fantasy Island. Berryman wearing heavy eye makeup steals some Coke away from traffickers so they can deliver it to Richard Lynch. The heavily scarred actor mentions in the DVD extras interview that he's always admired Deodato's closely knit family work ethic.

Nuthin says Jungle Party like tepid High Life in the can! 

Two Miller high life drinking corrupt journalists intercept a Coke smuggling ring that traffics it in using diapers. One of the main characters is Fran played by Lisa Blount who later on tragically died from a blood clot disorder called ITP at the age of 53. Blount was in a few horror films like Dead and Buried and Prince of Darkness. Her media partner in this film is Mark (Leonard Mann who played a cop in the wimpy slasher Night School, which is available on Warner Archives or the WB's cult film garage sale). You can tell when deleted scenes pop up in this film because the dialogue is in Italian, the stock footage doesn't match and they're usually extra gory plus there's carpet looking pubes on female corpses during a massacre scene.
Berryman and Deodato just Chilaxin

Chas offered this European cut that Anchor Bay re-assembled for their Dvd release. This is the best mid 80's it got for Deodato, it was all downhill after this with examples like Dial Help and Body Count (not the ICE T one). Francis, the female journalist meets up with Eric "Soul Glow" Lasalle from Coming to America as a purple hat wearing pimp. He mentions that Richard Lynch's character was tight bros with Jim Jones back in the day and they even inter-splice him into authentic news footage of the Kool-Aid cult massacre. The score by Claudio Simonetti is pretty lame other than the funky title track (sorry Claudio).

OK hold up I got a really sweet joke but there's a killer punch line at the end

Richard Bright and Karen Black show up as Willie Aames' parents, they are searching for their missing son. The way the amateur and "professional exploitation" stars interact is very awkward and seems as if they were not on the same set. Karen Black comes off as mildly psychotic and loudly screams after she watches footage of a decapitation (it's a laff riot)! It turns out Lynch's now a maniacal cult leader named Col. Horne. Aames, who later on became fanatical Christian Robocop aka Bible Man had all kinds of drug issues when this flick came out. At the same time he did this film he was on the Dungeons and Dragons cartoon. It's astounding to me that in the interviews, Deodato mentions how the former Zapped/ Charles in Charge Scott Baio sidekick was hard to deal with because of drug use. This coming from a dude who blatantly endangered lives and butchered animals for Neo realistic art's sake.

Everyone looks extremely sweaty and edgy here. Willie looks like he has a bug up his butt and is either whining or on the verge of having a hissy fit. He kind of reminds me of Miguel from Day of the Dead, an offensive Gay stereo type constantly acting pissy or feeling sorry for himself. Puta (aka Ana) or Valentina Forte Deodato's former girlfriend in real life has zero self esteem and keeps getting raped by various island fellows like John Steiner. Aames is so moody and bitchy, he's very unlikeable and I'm more accustomed to see him with a shit eating grin, slapping his co-star Chachi on the back while setting up a righteous prank. I have no idea how he wound up in this film but I'm glad it happened.

Popov is the tastiest of all the moderately priced Vodkas

Michael Berryman seems omnipotent, busting up through the floorboards or hanging out in a tree. He was most likely appearing in those Motley Crue videos in between this and Weird Science and was seriously in demand in the 80s. While Fran and her camera operator are filming the news, poor Puta falls down on a tree trap and ends up dead. The most gruesome scene in the film (which was cut out of many prints) has Willie Aimes "aiming" at a dude getting torn in half and disemboweled by a booby trap as he stupidly shoots at the entrails instead of blasting the dude in the face and doing him a favor, it's ghoulishly hysterical.

Move over Charles, I'm on tons of Coke and in charge now

Richard Bright, who's a decent actor seems really out of place in this film and you can almost read the embarrassment on his face. According to the DVD interviews with Ruggero, he mentions having to kick Bright off the set for alcoholism. Soused of not, I'm glad he's also here. The snakes and reptiles start going haywire as the journalists try to send footage to Miami but are intercepted by savages (there are actually no Cannibals featured, maybe they're on a diet). It's also unusual to see animals unharmed in a Deodato flick which I'm grateful for. We finally get to Richard Lynch at the last few minutes. I like the weird crucifix tree traps the main characters get hooked onto. Lynch has been in a lot of trash like Invasion USA, MST3K's Werewolf but was also in hardboiled gritty action like The Seven-Ups or the really fun Elm Street inspired Bad Dreams. He died in 2012 and his burned features were the bizarre result of self immolation on LSD, here's a disturbing clip of him talking about it. 
Some of the cannibal actors wail and moan after their leader sacrifices himself, it's one of the goofiest parts of the movie. They act as if he's the head vampire and once he goes down, it effects them as well and they goofily yell.

I was in Invisible Kid so no, I'm not above this dopey shit either

This along with Jungle Holocaust and Cannibal Holocaust is considered a trilogy but doesn't actually connect, put it this way neither do the Back to the Future sequels but no one ever seems to point that out! Berryman actually gets taken out by a fire extinguisher if you can believe that! I love this film it's my favorite Deodato and is a cheesy good time.



  1. Cool write-up. This is some seriously insane stuff and you gotta love Willie Aames in that Mickey Mouse shirt.

  2. Good review - I enjoyed this one. That's some great poster/cover art of Berryman.

  3. love to see comments! The poster reminds me of a G.I. Joe action figure, the Habro corp should jump on that right away. Willie Aames as far as I know has never spoken a word about this flick, maybe he was too high.

  4. Great review and great comments.

  5. Whoops I meant Hasbro, too much coffee

  6. Check out his imdb page. He must have wrote it...Lol...

  7. An "Invisible Kid" shout out from Mrs. Black! Rejoice!


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