Director: Donald G. Jackson & R. J. Kizer
Screenplay: Donald G. Jackson & Randall Frakes
Starring: Roddy Piper, Sandahl Bergman, Cec Verrell, William Smith, Rory Calhoun
Running Time: 86 Mins
Format: Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack
Release Date 03/02/14
Reviewed by Guy Adams
My partnerâ€™s brotherâ€™s been paying us a visit. In the evening we tend to watch a movie. He tends to hate it. Or damn it with faint acceptance. This is fine, heâ€™s a fun vampire, he canâ€™t help it.
Knowing I had some review discs en route, my partner asked if there was anything in there we might watch together.
â€œWell,â€ I told her, â€œthereâ€™s HELL COMES TO FROGTOWN.â€
Her face didnâ€™t quite know what expression to go for. It settled for the look I have grown to call: â€˜Number 33: Weary Toleranceâ€™.
â€œWhatâ€™s it about?â€ she asked, in that guarded manner a person has when wanting precise information regarding the size of a spider crawling up their back.
â€œIn the future, the majority of people have been made sterile through atomic war. Luckily, Sam Hell, played by ex-wrestler and John Carpenter punch bag, Roddy Piper, has a functioning sperm count. Heâ€™s kidnapped by the medical authorities, made to wear an explosive metal chastity belt and sent to Frogtown.â€
â€œYes, thatâ€™s where the genetically-mutated frog people live and theyâ€™ve kidnapped a group of fertile women to use as sex slaves. Donâ€™t worry though, they wonâ€™t be forced to endure the misery of the Dance of Three Snakes because I just bet Samâ€™s going to break in there, free them and then get on with the impregnations.â€
At that moment, I donâ€™t think I exaggerate to note that an eight-year long relationship hung in the balance. She sighed.
â€œYou donâ€™t half watch some shit.â€
I watched HELL COMES TO FROGTOWN on my own and enjoyed myself a great deal.
Obviously itâ€™s silly, terribly so, but thereâ€™s nothing wrong with that.
HELL COMES TO FROGTOWN is an exploitation movie. It was made on a pittance (though they obviously spent a few quid on the frog masks as theyâ€™re actually rather good) and aims to do nothing less noble than amuse whoever shelled out a few quid to watch it. It succeeds perfectly. It has itâ€™s fly-encrusted tongue thrust firmly into its eustachian tube, it never takes itself remotely seriously and doesnâ€™t expect us to either.
Reviewing films like this always feels a bid redundant because, honestly, you either enjoy this sort of thing or you donâ€™t. If youâ€™re the kind of viewer that hates B Movie trashy fun then clearly, you wonâ€™t enjoy this. If however, like me, you love a bit of cinematic foolishness then HELL COMES TO FROGTOWN is an absolute joy.
Arrow have released it as a limited edition (1,000 copies) Blu-ray/DVD combo pack available exclusively through Amazon. It looks and sounds excellent (I do so love films like this being put on Blu-ray, it feels cheeky, like breaking into Cartier and then pinning your ill-gotten gains on a corpse). Special features: an interview with Roddy Piper talking about his acting career in general and HELL COMES TO FROGTOWN in particular; special effects man, Steve Wang talking about his froggy creations and actor, Brian Frank, talking about his role as Commander Toty, the chief villain.