VHS IS THE SHT: Avenged (1977)

VHS IS THE SHT. rare, valuable finds based on global market value.

Avenged (aka Tomcats aka Deadbeat, 1977)
Sold on eBay for $75 This very obscure and very hard to find “sex and violence” flick is akin to revenge classics such as I Spit on Your Grave and Last House on the Left. Released in big box by Continental, it’s so unknown there’s not even an entry for it on wikipedia and on youtube there’s only one video, which is the trailer. A trailer that doesn’t seem to take the film seriously enough. In fact, the trailer focuses on the group of villians and disregards any revenge story. To make it even more difficult to find, it goes by two other titles! –Kenyon

The Car (1977)

The Car (1977) “The car, he’s in here!” HE! i love you car. You are so smart you were able to get inside that guy’s garage. You are so much a better actor than those losers. Yes, Ronny “the ground was hallowed” Cox and James Brolin, who plays cat and mouse with a car from the depths of hell, while allowing his dumb girlfriend to get mauled by the car. Check out those sweet maneuvers by the car. Good job, car. [rating: $5]-Kenyon

Eaten Alive (1977) The follow-up to Tobe Hooper’s influential Texas Chainsaw Massacre, the much lesser known Eaten Alive was inexplicably a large step down. Like Chainsaw, Eaten Alive was loosely based on a true story. Given the lengthy mundane scenes, low budget set and laughable killings, any truth to the story isn’t much respected here. Regarding the scenes that drag, most of it consists of a hotel owner in a swampy area of the southern states mumbling incorherently to himself (similar to Maniac from 1981). This sheds little light on why he kills (or nearly kills) people that come to his hotel and then lets his giant crocodile do the rest. And that’s where a majority of the laughs come in. The croc, which is usually hidden in an abundance of fog and for some reason in water right next to the entrance of the hotel, is utterly hilarious and the star of this sexploitation horror film (highlights include swallowing a dog and chomping on pre-Nightmare on Elm Street star Robert Englund).

Chainsaw, which had good perspective on location, showed a house hidden in the vast rural terrain of Texas. In Eaten Alive–which has gone under numerous other titles–we really have no idea about the location of the very few settings, which include the motel, a whorehouse and bar. We are shown the front and inside of the buildings and that’s all. And never at daytime. If anything it’s more comparable to a play in a theater. Aside from the presumedly unintentional comedy of the croc and its madman owner chasing victims with a scyth (that thing used for cutting cornfields) the only other redeeming aspect is the nearly constant red hues that provide the foggy atmosphere. Fortunately, Hooper was able to follow Alive with such classics as Funhouse and Poltergeist. [rating: $2] -Kenyon

P.S: by chance, both Eaten Alive and the below film, Intruder, have opening credits in front of the moon.