Welcome to UK Films Net

Welcome to UKFilms.net - Providing independent movie reviews since 2002. Here at UK Films Net, we are on a mission to seek out the coolest films and hidden gems from micro-budget to Hollywood blockbusters. We review films in all genres and all eras. We review the actual movies and the DVD quality. We have an attraction to B-Movies as this is the area where most hidden gems can be found, but we provide the lowdown on popular blockbusters too.

The Death Merchant Movie Review

Title: The Death Merchant
Format: DVD
Year: 1991
Label: 1st Miracle Pictures

Here we have a strange action thriller from Director James Winburn... Who? What is it with all the stunt coordinators making z movies? Well anyhow, here is another one. Not all terrible - but very hard to like. The story is OK, the cast are pretty good and the direction is just about passable. If you look past it's flaws, is it worth the effort? Let's take a look...
The lead character seems to be the villain called Ivan played by the late great Lawrence Tierney. And quite rightly so. He has the presence and the pedigree to carry this film, which he just about manages to do.

The story is a bit messy but essentially, an archaeologist finds an artifact with supernatural powers. Ivan wants it. We are then introduced to lots of forgettable characters who also want it.  

The worst thing about this movie ( and to be honest, there is a lot not to like ) is the sound mix and music. At times the music is mixed out of sync with the following loop, there is also an awful echo effect used at various times on dialogue, effects and music which is totally distracting and downright annoying. I think the sound mixer Jack Lindauer must have acquired a 1970s copycat echo machine and was intent on using it.

There is no need for anyone to watch this movie. It's a mess. Where films like aquanauts embraced and exploited their low budget trash audience, The Death Merchant just pisses them off. Not ridiculous enough to be a worthy b-movie and not executed well enough to be a passable TV movie.

UK Films Rating: 2/10
Release Rating: 4/10 - Picture ok, trailer included.
Did James like it? No

Aquanoids Movie Review

Title: Aquanoids
Format: DVD
Year: 2002
Label: Screen Entertainment

Wow! I will sum it up now and work my way backwards - Stupid, Awful & Brilliant in equal measure. This is very low budget trash cinema for the die hard trash cinema fans. The general viewing public will undoubtedly turn this movie off after the first 2 mins. BUT...if you like trash cinema and stick with it, it's actually a fun movie.

It's a classic B-Movie creature feature done pretty badly but almost unashamedly. It's Jaws meets, Piranha meets Zombie Lake with lots of static camera shots, terrible acting and dodgy framing.
I can see I'm not selling it so far....On the plus side, the gore FX & makeup are brilliant, the music works well and there are a few characters and actors that lift the production just enough to pull you in. 
The lead actor is a busty blond, who gives it her best shot but falls short, by a long way. In fact, she struggles to talk and move at the same time for the most part. The lead male only features in the film for about 30 seconds at the beginning and 30 seconds at the end. If the director had gone with him as the lead, the movie could have been a cult classic. 
There are creatures in the bay that attack swimmers. That's pretty much it. The stand out characters are the mayor and his side kick played by Edwin Craig ( Batman ) and Ike Gringrich ( None worth mentioning )
This duo work brilliantly together as the villains who must put a stop to these melding kids before they ruin their plans to build a shopping centre in the cove.
The direction is pretty poor, even by trash standards. Lots of static badly framed shots and unnecessary cut shots. There is a lot of underwater footage which is actually pretty good and definitely adds production value. There is a nod to Roger Corman films and their Italian knock offs which is nice. This kinda sums it up. This movie is a knock off of a knock off of a knock off.

I must say that I actually enjoyed this movie. There were even a few laugh out loud moments - mainly due to the horrific acting and stupid dialogue, but I guess that's kind of the whole point of these type of movies. Megashark, sharktopus etc have just polished the turd, or trash, as would be the case. I would not recommend this to anyone other than z-movie enthusiasts - if that sounds like you, then I thoroughly recommend Aquanoids.

UK Films Rating: 5/10
Release Rating: 5/10 - Picture poor, but trailers included.
Did James like it? Yes