Shock ‘Em Dead
Martin (Stephen Quadros) is a no-account loser who works a dead-end job at a pizza joint. He dreams of being a rock star, but he’s unabashedly terrible at playing the guitar. After bombing an audition for the band Spastic Colon, Martin approaches a voodoo priestess who offers him anything he wants in return for his soul. Martin readily agrees, and one magic dagger stabbing latter, is transformed into Angel Martin, rock god. Angel has it all, a modest house filled with beautiful women, amazing guitar skills, and the occasional need to drink a victim’s lifeforce in order to stay alive.
Shock ‘Em Dead is another entry into the subgenre of rock n’ roll horror. These elements usually fit well together (Rob Zombie has basically made a film career out of the fact). Shock ‘Em Dead is a little unusual in that it is light on horror, but manages to pull off a fair number of credible rock scenes. Usually, it’s the other way around, with movies falling down in the music department. Spastic Colon is a stereotypical hair metal band, not my chosen flavor of music, but the it works well enough. The movie even takes steps to show-off some actual fancy guitar playing.
|The Jem movie looks better than I expected.|
Traci Lords is featured prominently in the promotional material, and although she does have a decent amount of screen time, she isn’t given much to do outside of look pretty and get seduced. Stephen Quadros does a great job as Martin the nebbish dork, and then as Angel. His transition from victim to victimizer is rapid, but Quadros makes it work and even manages to keep Angel charming enough that the viewer doesn’t totally turn on him despite the amount murder he engages in. The rest of the cast are fine if unremarkable. Aldo Ray shows up as a surprising scrappy pizza restaurant manager.
|"I think I had waaaaay to much Ecto Cooler."|