Sunday, May 21, 2017

The Overlook Theatre Reviews: Crocodile Fury, God Freyho's

3 of 5 viewers "Liked" "Crocodile Fury" (1988, China)
Here's what the creatures had to say:

Lord Battle - "Crocodile Fury is one of the rare micro budget films I've seen that I'd recommend watching as a trailer. It contains several amazing moments but unfortunately they all happen at the very beginning and end of the film, in turn making the middle 40 minutes feel like 140 minutes. The purchased footage vs shot footage also feel so disconnected that its appeal quickly dissipates." - 3 Stars

Math Mage - "This film is most of an Indonesian film about shape-changing crocodile people attacking a village complicated by one of the crocodiles being the reincarnation of the hero's dead girlfriend. This unfinished film was taken by an enterprising Hong Kong filmmaker who shot additional footage to extend the runtime. Bizarrely, he decided to film a white guy fighting hopping vampires controlled by a sorceress with serious 80's hair. Linked together with questionable dubbing, this nightmarish hybrid is even more terrible than it sounds; but it must be experienced for (unintentional) hilarity." - 3 Stars

Huntress - "To reiterate the note I passed to Trash during the screening, I can see why Crocodile Fury doesn't have a synopsis on IMDB. It's really an anthology if you think about it, but only uses the middles of the movies it incorporates, probably to cut out any dull moments but effectively cutting out all the connective tissue that could have tied this into a cohesive story. What's left is an insane movie clip Frankenstein's monster that runs too long. Insanity is exhausting and so is Crocodile Fury." - 3 Stars

Prang-69 - "I don't think I liked this. How many times can you toss screaming Asian people into a large mouth? I dug the puking and the random accents used for dubbing. And the subplot with guns and zombies and white people. And the sorceress named Monica (lol). And I guess I kinda liked it overall but it was too fucking long." - 2 Stars

Trash -This movie takes so many twists and turns... because there's absolutely no consistency to it, as it's a mixtape of an Indonesian Crocodile movie, a black magic Hong Kong film, and some awful footage Godfrey Ho shot with a secondary white cast. Crocodile Fury is half animal attack movie half Hong Kong black magic movie. Although I love the giant crocodile puppet being controlled by filmmakers who threw their extras around like rag dolls, it really wears you out watching something that makes this little sense. I can't recommend it unless you're drunk with a rowdy group of friends. It's really just a lot of pain. ONE STAR." - 1 Star

The Overlook Theatre Final Rating*
(Below is for after you've seen the film)

Hey guys, it's me, Trash. You're about to read about the director of Crocodile Fury, a Hong Kong filmmaker with a pretty significant filmography named Godfrey Ho. But after you've read this... do not go down this rabbit hole. Do not look into the void of insanity that is the poorly documented career of Godfrey Ho, because you will lose part of yourself and it will never come back. It's simply not worth it. It's too dangerous. 
By all accounts, Crocodile Fury was directed by a Hong Kong director named Godfrey Ho, despite the opening credits citing Ted Kingsbrook as director. Godfrey Ho first started making movies under a production company he owned with his wife, where he developed his trademark style of buying up footage from unfinished and unreleased movies, usually from Indonesia, Hong Kong, and Thailand, shooting a couple scenes with white actors, splicing it all together, dubbing the whole thing, and giving it a wacky title. Basically, when you turn on a Godfrey Ho movie, what you should expect is a mishmash of nonsense, like a weird stew made from all the leftovers in your fridge. A frequent Godfrey Ho device was characters from two different movies calling each other on the phone to have a conversation, which was the only, very loose connection between them. 

To get an even better feel for his work, here's a few Godfrey Ho titles:

  1. The Blazing Ninja 
  2. Ninja, the Violent Sorceror (as Bruce Lambert) 
  3. Ninja in the Killing Fields (as York Lam) 
  4. Ninja Thunderbolt 
  5. Ninja Project Daredevils (as Bruce Lambert) 
  6. Ninja Terminator 
  7. Bionic Ninja 
  8. Clash of the Ninjas (as Willace Chan) 
  9. Golden Ninja Warrior (uncredited) 
  10. Ninja Dragon 
  11. Ninja Fantasy (as Bruce Lambert) 
  12. Ninja Hunt (uncredited) 
  13. The Ninja Squad 
  14. Tough Ninja the Shadow Warrior (as Larry Hutton) 
  15. Ninja Destroyer 
  16. The Ultimate Ninja 
  17. Challenge of the Ninja 
  18. Ninja Champion 
  19. Project Ninja Daredevils 
  20. Cobra vs. Ninja (uncredited) 
  21. Death Code: Ninja (as Tommy Cheung) 
  22. Golden Ninja Invasion 
  23. Ninja Commandments (uncredited) 
  24. Ninja Death Squad (as Tommy Cheung) 
  25. Ninja Operation: Licensed to Terminate (uncredited) 
  26. Ninja Operation 6: Champion on Fire 
  27. Ninja Phantom Heroes (as Bruce Lambert) 
  28. Ninja: Silent Assassin 
  29. Ninja: American Warrior (as Tommy Cheung) 
  30. Ninja 8: Warriors of Fire (as Bruce Lambert) 
  31. Ninja in Action (as Tommy Cheung) 
  32. Ninja Kill (uncredited) 
  33. Ninja, Force of Assassins (as Victor Sears) 
  34. Ninja Knight Brothers of Blood (as Raymond Woo) 
  35. Ninja Strike Force (uncredited) 
  36. The Power of Ninjitsu (uncredited) 
  37. Ninja Extreme Weapons (as Victor Sears) 
  38. Ninja Demon's Massacre (as Tommy Cheung) 
  39. Rage of Ninja 
  40. Ninja: The Battalion (as Victor Sears) 
  41. Ninja Operation 7: Royal Warriors 
  42. Diamond Ninja Force 
  43. Empire of the Spiritual Ninja (as Bruce Lambert) 
  44. Ninja of the Magnificence (as Charles Lee) 
  45. Ninja Powerforce (uncredited) 
  46. Full Metal Ninja (as Charles Lee) 
  47. Zombie vs. Ninja (as Charles Lee) 
  48. Ninja Empire 
  49. Thunder Ninja Kids: The Hunt for the Devil Boxer (as Alton Cheung) 

ANY QUESTIONS? You get it, yeah? And this is an incomplete list. This dude made HUNDREDS OF MOVIES, usually about ninjas, and often under pseudonyms.
He made most of these working with a producer named Tomas Tang who ran maybe the shadiest production company ever, Filmark. Under Filmark a group of a dozen or so filmmakers made these recycled footage movies, except MANY OF THEM WERE GODFREY HO! It's hard to figure out who exists and who doesn't! And the way the story goes, a disastrous fire (documented here on Wikipedia) destroyed the Filmark offices in 1996, killing Tomas Tang. Or did he? Maybe he didn't exist either, and was actually just Godfrey Ho as well. Is it all a conspiracy? There are layers upon layers of insanity going on here.
Godfrey Ho is retired from filmmaking now, but much of his legacy exists on youtube. Dive in at your own risk: Here


The Overlook Theatre materialized in a residence for a screening on 5/18/2017
*Based on the star ratings turned in by character reviewers, others viewed and got to "Dislike" or "Like" but that does not affect the rating.

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