Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Sudden Death

-Reviewed by Skunkape-
Directed by Sig Shore (1985)
Sudden Death is one of those rape/revenge flicks, it doesn't really stand out among some of the greats that we know and love here at TOG, like Lipstick, Rape SquadNaked Vengeance, and certainly not I Spit on Your Grave, but it does have a few worthy moments of greatness. By "worth moments of greatness", I mean scenes of filth and carnage.

"Let's just have a romantic evening at home with a Deathwish marathon."

So how did Sudden Death show up on my radar? Glad you asked! I was watching the film Galaxy aka Battle for the Lost Planet. Galaxy's a super low budget sci-fi post apocalyptic space oddity directed by Brett Piper. Piper's an effects guy and you may know his work from Troma's Nymphoid Barbarian in Dinosaur Hell, he designed the Tromasaurous! So Anyway, throughout the feature I couldn't take my eyes of the female costar, Australian beauty Denise Coward. I had to see if she was in anything else worth watching and here we are, Sudden Death.

"Is that the Cash Cab over there?"

The movie opens with it's own cheesy title song Sudden Death, I love it when the song and movie title match!  Really pulls me into the film. Once the theme song fades out, Sudden Death wastes no time getting into the rape. While Valerie Wells (Coward) is at a travel agency planning her honeymoon with her future fiance, two criminals hijack a cab. When the couple parts and kisses each other goodbye for the evening, you'll never guess what taxi Valerie flags down. She hails the stolen cab, the two crooks pull her in to brutally rape and beat her, then she's left for dead on the sidewalk. This all in the first 10 minutes of the film and we now have a new Valerie taking shape as her rage builds inside. Her fiance tells her to try to forget about it, while still hospitalized and incentive cops ask her to answer embarrassing questions. Such as "Did they penetrate you? In the Vagina, rectum, or orally?" It's enough in my book for her to purchase a fire arm and start gunning down any sleaze ball that puts their grubby paws on her. And that's exactly what she does!

"I bet you'll start using Uber now!"

"Can I get more Jell-O please?"

"I''ll catch the bad guys and get some brownie points."

There is one cop, Detective Marty Lowery (Frank Runyeon) that feels for her and is on the case. He's tracking down these scum bags and won't rest until he catches them. It's quite obvious this policeman has the hots for this honey and wants to stay close to her. Valerie is also hunting for these creeps but who will find them first?


"You buy the General Lee replica horn and I'll get some of those rockets."

"Get this cause,
There Is No Place - No Time, When A Woman Alone Can Be Safe!"


Valerie hits one sleazy hot spot after another. One leather clad guy picks her up and instantly tries to force himself on her while back at his run down apartment, this results in multiple bullets right in his torso.


"This is my kind of safe sex!"


Her most dangerous encounter occurs when she's mistaken for a prostitute. A pimp and a really kinky john decide that they want to double team her in the back of a van. She barely gets to her gun in time, luckily shooting the two heathens.


"Aren't you going to buy me dinner first?"
The most surprising situation is when a legit cab driver takes her to a bad part of town and tries to inject her with heroin so he can give her his tip, and perhaps more! All these killings start making the local paper as well as the news. The bullets she uses for the gun are expanding bullets known as dum-dum bullets so she is known throughout the city as the "Dum-Dum" killer. She can't even catch a break and get a cool vigilante name from the press!

"You're no Judd Hirsh!"
Dum Dum the bullets, not the lollipops.

Even though Detective Marty discovers Valerie's the "Dum-Dum" killer, he keeps her secret safe and when he does figure out who the two rapists are, he sets up an operation to put them away, or is it "blow them away?", for good.
Sudden Death has the tagline "The First Woman Vigilante", and "ACTION GOES INTO OVERTIME", oh wait sorry, that's the Van Dam Movie with the same title. This also has another tagline, "Don't Mess With This Dirty Harriet", which is pretty good even though Valerie is clearly channeling about 80% Charles Bronson and only 20% Clint Eastwood. The Soundtrack is nothing short of pure 80's break dancing style segue way music. I haven't been able to track down the Sudden Death theme song by Bloodlines but there are some other decent tracks to be heard in this movie like New Order's Confusion.


"I didn't expect you to look that good nekid!"


What started out as a run of the mill rape revenge film, having a dopey made for television feel to it manages to sleaze it's way into my heart, with more than enough F'd up moments to make this a worth while watch.
Denise Coward gives a strong performance transforming from successful career woman to ass kicking scum bag exterminator. We don't ever really get to know her assault-ants to well but enough to know that they deserve what they get.
6/10 ON THE CULT-O-METER
SEE IT, if a fan of the genre.

PLUS,  don't forget to follow me on twitter and Theater of Guts, of course!

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