Sunday, January 4, 2015
CULT of THE DAMNED
aka ANGEL ANGEL DOWN WE GO
I have an obsession with AIP (American International Pictures) and had never seen a movie from AIP that didn't entertain me in some way or the other, either in my youth or now in my AARP years, until Cult of The Damned destroyed that axiom. Not only is this the worst AIP movie I've seen, it's also one of the worse films I've ever seen. One bright thing about the film is Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann composed the songs, so at least there are a few decent tunes in the movie. Released originally under the title Angel Angel Down We Go, a year later it became Cult of The Damned to capitalize on the Manson murders (yeah, Hollywood, what a way to show your sympathy....or maybe you were showing your sympathy......for The Devil!)
The plot (and I use that word loosely) follows Tara (Holly Near), the overweight daughter of one of the richest families in the world. Her parents hire a rock band for her coming out party. The lead singer, Jordan Christopher doing his best Jim Morrison impression, plays rock star Bogart Peter Stuyvesant, the charismatic leader of the band (which also features Lou Rawls).
Jennifer Jones is cast as Holly's gold digging mother. It seems mother was a porn star in her former life. Her father is rich and gay. Eventually, Christopher seduces Holly Near, Jennifer Jones, AND the father. For any of you fans of Holly Near, who have always ached to see her naked, this is the movie for you. There's a lot of talking in this film (and that includes piles of bad dialogue), but the main problem with the movie is the director tried to make so many "arty" shots that it just made a mess of the whole film. I'm sure at the time (1969), the director thought he was sending a "heavy" message. The only thing that got heavy with me was my eyes, which kept wanting to close and not watch this piece of crap.