Friday, September 30, 2011

The Ripper

The Ripper (1985)
Dir:Christopher Lewis (Blood Cult/Revenge)

So today I felt like taking things back to review the kind of film I started this site for and that is the 80's Slasher flick. It's just too bad I decided to do so with this shit of a film... I was prepared to watch Torso but for some reason my player would not allow screen shots of it so, As a friend and longtime horror fan Dave and I sat down too watch a flick, I stumbled upon this one in my collection and the moment I stated who ws starring in it (Tom Savini) my friend was sold.
                             The film opens with a flashback to the original Jack The Ripper in action as he kills a woman of the night before we are flashed forward to a college class where the students are studying crime ,Murderers in particular when the Teacher Prof. Richard Harlowe focuses on Jack the Ripper. We then meet the teachers love interest, The aerobics teacher and just as we enter an 80's dance montage out of nowhere and the film is quickly becoming horribly boring ,(At this point My friend fittingly decides to do a line of coke off of my notes.) After the dance sequence Richard and his love interest enter a antique shop looking for some furniture and he happens to set his eyes on a large ruby ring that seems to have a pull over him. He decides to pass on the ring and the couple leaves . From here the film really hits a boring stride as the movie focuses on the teachers class and the studies of Jack the Ripper. We learn that Richard has sort of a close relationship with one of his students named Steve who shares a love for horror flicks. As Richard falls asleep while watching a campy horror flick (Much like me and my friend at this point) he has a vivid dream of murdering his girlfriend in a very similar way to The Ripper.

Soon Prof.Harlowe finds the mysterious ring he was fascinated by in a book on The ripper  and apparently it was once his and he becomes obsessed with purchasing the item. Harlowe returns to the shop to pruchase the ring but the shop owner is holding it now for someone who wants it, After a pointless padding scene of about ten minutes of him waiting to see if the prospect buyer arrives he finally is sold the ring. After obtaining the ring Harlowe begins to act strange and suspiciously people begin turning up dead around the campus. From here I think we all can see what this is leading to. Strange things start happening like Harlowe suddenly becomes left handed ,Like The Ripper and his dream continue to be filed with murder. One night Steve is on a date at the lookout point with his girlfriend when she suddenly disappears out of nowhere and he finds her dead behind some bushes ,carved up only feet away from where he was standing so how no sound was made is beyond me. Steve spots an officer approaching just as a man dressed as jack the ripper flees the scene. After a long chase in which two cars are chasing the ripper on foot but still cannot catch him ,he escapes.

After some research Steve comes to the conclusion that it is in fact Harlowe that is responsible for the murders and is being possessed by the ring of the ripper. He decides t pay Harlowe a visit and prepares to shoot him, the two fight over the gun and Harlowe escapes to meet up with his dance instructor girlfriend, Now is a race to get to the date first as Steve gives chase. Once inside a warehouse (Strange place for a date) Harlowe has been turned into Jack the ripper (Played by Tom Savini). He appears to be invincible as Steve arrives and shoots him a few times to no affect. He realizes that the ring makes him immortal and cuts his fingers off leaving him vulnerable just as the police show up on the scene. The Ripper appears and the police unload on him putting him out of his misery as he turns back into Harlowe. The film closes as a group of young kids find the ring on some railroad tracks and take it home to their parents , I guess leaving this film open for a sequel that  to my knowledge never made it out.

Now before I trash this film, I will give it credit as it is one of the first shot on video films and by those standards the cinematography is not bad at all and the gore in this flick is pretty well done , I'm sure that was thanks to Tom Savini. Now with the bad, This film is just downright boring , Over half of the film is just lame dialog about students learning of Jack the Ripper. The film never really picks up until the last twenty minutes or so and other than that it is just sleep  inducing, I mean my friend who was here watching it with me did a damn line of coke and still managed to pass out during the film. I have seen some bad horror flicks in my day and no this is not the worse by far but it just lacked any real suspense or entertainment to keep me interested. This film is truly only for Slasher completists and huge fans of Tom Savini although he is billed as the star and is only in the film for about ten m minutes in the end which was obviously a gimmick to sell the vid. Unless you are a collector of the genre you are not missing much by skipping this one.

Overall: 4 out of 10

P.S. Thanks to my friend Dave for sitting through this one with me, Otherwise I may have turned it off 20 minutes in.

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