Hell's Bloody Devils/Review 2
From The Grindhouse Cinema Database
< Hell's Bloody DevilsRevision as of 12:55, 27 December 2020 by Pete (Created page with "In the age of the internet where you can get everything at your fingertips, sometimes the good-old-days of waiting for something worthwhile is getting lost...but not in this c...")
In the age of the internet where you can get everything at your fingertips, sometimes the good-old-days of waiting for something worthwhile is getting lost...but not in this case! It's been almost 10 years since finding Hell's Bloody Devils. I stumbled upon this film for the first time after watching an episode of The Cinema Snob (Brad Jones), in which he points out the awkward combination of spy movie and biker flick, he also talks about how Colonel Sanders appeared in the film! Fascinated with bizarre elements, I have searched everywhere on the internet to find this movie...but no such luck. However, weeks ago I found a nice copy of Hell's Bloody Devils on YouTube! The hunt is over! Although I realize that Pete already wrote a review of it here on GCDB (which is being referenced at Wikipedia!), I decided to give you my opinion of the long-awaited discovery of this film too.
The copy that I watch begins with the trailer...and just like every exploitation films, they try to tell sell you how scary the film is:
"THE SHOCKING SCENES YOU ARE ABOUT TO SEE ARE NOT SUGGESTED FOR THE WEAK OR IMMATURE. IF YOU CANNOT TAKE IT, WE ADVISE YOU TO NOW PATRONIZE THE CONCESSION STAND OR LOOK AWAY FROM THE SCREEN DURING THIS PREVIEW OF..."HELL'S BLOODY DEVILS!" "
...which is actually the director's (Al Adamson) marketing trademark since several trailers of his films begin with this text, followed by the title of the film. Anyway, the trailer mostly shows a bunch of bikers riding around and beating people up to give the impression that we are about to see a group of The Wild Angels being chased by old cops throughout the film. However, as you might already know, Hell's Bloody Devils is actually based on an unreleased spy film called "The Fakers" or "Smashing The Crime Syndicated" that Al made in late 60's, but couldn't find a distributor for it. Therefore, in 1970 he decided to splice in the footage of bikers into this film to cash-in the upcoming trend of Biker film and released it (by his company) as Hell's Bloody Devils. Does the storytelling flow work here? I will reveal later on. But first, let's get into the storyline...
Mark Adams is an FBI agent who has to investigate the case of counterfeit bank notes, which turns out that they are made by the Neo-Nazi group in order to fund their operation by selling it to someone else. Therefore, it's Mark's task to stop the return of Third Reich! Along the way, he meets several attractive female characters...
An Israeli spy who vows to revenge the Nazi (since they killed her parents) by infiltrating this organization A young girl who is just 17 but pretends to be 37 A woman who...well, we don't even know her name since some of her scenes are cut (we'll get there soon) Pussy Galore...I mean, a short-haired FBI agent who has good fighting skills and wants to prove that she's as good as men There's not much to talk about character development or intense storyline here, because this is not You Only Live Twice or Diamonds Are Forever, but still the film somehow attracts me due to the not-so-good acting, cool Action scenes (like gunfight or car chase), or what our hero has to do next. However, the scene that mesmerized people the most is the one that features cameo from the legendary actor, Colonel Sanders himself!
Yep! He appeared in the "spy movie" portion of the film (and not the biker parts as many people would say) in a most outrageous way. The context here is that Mark and Leni (a woman that the film doesn't reveal her name since her scene is cut) decide to go out for a date. So, as many lovers would do, they go to the most romantic place they can imagine: Kentucky Fried Chicken! And after they sit around at the table, the real Col. Sanders walks to their table and says...
"Ain't that the most wonderful chicken you ever ate?"
And after an awkwardly pause from every character for 5 seconds, they burst out in laughter! While many people praise how "genius" KFC marketing campaign is when they bring up the game console (seriously, they make a new game console that has powerful engine and...what else? The chicken chamber that keeps your fried chicken warm!) or the short movie that aired on Showtime weeks ago, but Mr. Sanders (who, according to the book Fast Food Nation, doesn't have an actual military ranking) pioneered it by funding an exploitation film as an exchange for product placement. Although Hollywood at the time already has product placement in a much subtle way (such as De Beer's product placement in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes), but KFC predicted how over the top it would become in the next 20-30 years.
So yeah, The Fakers part of the film isn't that bad for me. It's not a masterpiece and there's no twist now and then, but the simplicity and straightforward storyline of it makes me enjoy the film more than it should. Wait a minute, do I forget to tell you something? Oh, yeah! THE BIKERS! What do they have anything to do with Nazi, you may ask? Well, the newly spliced in footage tells us that they are hired by the Nazi to terrorize innocent people and...that's pretty much it. After they beat up two drivers and get the paycheck at the beginning, they do nothing for the rest of the film, except getting riding around, getting more pay check, banging chicks, and getting killed by someone who gives them money...the Israeli spy! That's right. They manage to get her back and film these sequences to make the storyline more "coherent". But apart from the fact that if the Nazis wants to hide their ass while doing these banknote job, why would they openly hired to swastika bikers to injure people? I find that the bikers parts provide NOTHING to the story at all and slowly becomes the painful fillers that I don't care at all. In addition, as I said before, there are some sequences in The Fakers part that has to be cut in order to insert new bikers footage. Well, the problem here is that some characters introduction or crucial plot points are completely gone. So the new cut-and-paste filmmaking technique somehow makes a simple film becomes unnecessary more confusing!
In the end, is my 9 years of waiting for this film worthless? No. At least The Fakers is way more interesting than a bland and forgettable biker portions. Hell's Bloody Devils is worth watching only for the spy parts and you can skip the filler scenes without getting lost in storyline at all. So yeah, my next mission is to find the uncut version of The Fakers. Is it going to be another 10 years until I can watch it? Nobody knows, but it's going to be better than Hell's Bloody Devils for sure.
NOTE: The copy that I find has different picture quality throughout the film. It's like they transfer each reel of the film into each VHS tape.
Nuttawut Permpithak hails from Thailand. He spends his free time watching exploitation films (or any films from the past) writing articles, taking photos and reviewing films for GCDb.