Abel Ferrara – The Funeral (1996)


Abel Ferrara must be one “happy camper.” Really, I have to wonder when there’s been a happy ending in one of his movies; for him it might come close to being unconventional to have one. A lot of his movies (Ms. 45, Driller Killer, Bad Lieutenant, China Girl) all end pretty badly (I mean that as a compliment), but none as drenched in horror as The Funeral. Perhaps that should have been expected, and indeed I was hoping that a film starting off with teary-eyed Italians looking over a casket of a 23 year old guy with Billy Holiday’s “Gloomy Sunday” would follow through on its dark promise of death and dread. And it does. Mostly. And that ending… Continue reading

Abel Ferrara – ‘R Xmas (2001)


In New York, in a morning close to Christmas, an upper class father and mother go in their BMW to a private school to see the play of their daughter. Then they go shopping and later they return to their fancy apartment in Manhattan. In the night, they move to a simple apartment in a dangerous neighborhood, where they prepare drugs for distribution. On the Christmas Eve, while buying the Christmas gift for their daughter, the father is kidnapped, and his wife desperately tries to raise a high amount of money to pay the requested ransom. Continue reading

Abel Ferrara – Cat Chaser (1989)


An American veteran (Weller) of the Dominican Republic intervention (LBJ era) is running a hotel in Miami, and is trying to put the memories of the intervention behind him. He gets involved with a former Dominican Republic general’s wife (McGillis). He then gets duped through a series of intricate plot twists into helping a group of people trying to rip the general off. Based on the novel by Elmore Leonard (IMBD) Continue reading

Abel Ferrara – The Driller Killer (1979)


Description: An artist slowly loses his mind as he and his two female friends scrape to pay the bills. The punk band downstairs increasingly agitates him, his art dealer is demanding that he complete his big canvas painting as promised, and he gets into fights with his girlfriends. When the dealer laughs at his canvas he snaps, and begins taking it out on the people responsible for his pain and random transients in the manner suggested by the title.

– by Ed Sutton (imdb.com) Continue reading

Abel Ferrara – China Girl (1987)


Janet Maslin from NY Times
SLEAZE has few champions, but Abel Ferrara is one of them, having made some of the liveliest exploitation films (among them ”Ms. 45” and ”Fear City”) in recent years. Mr. Ferrara has since gone on to direct some episodes of ”Miami Vice,” where his brand of lurid, high-style glamour fits in perfectly. His films are outlandish by their very nature, and what could be more so than ”China Girl,” a blatant mix of ”Romeo and Juliet,” ”Mean Streets” and ”West Side Story” played out among very young, barely verbal Chinese and Italian street gangs? It would be gratifying to report that Mr. Ferrara had made a coup of this, but the odds against it are daunting. Instead, ”China Girl” amounts to a cult item and a nice try. Continue reading

Abel Ferrara – The Gladiator (1986)



A homicidal maniac is on the loose, killing motorists at random in his “death car” – after losing his brother to the twisted assassin “Skull”, Rick Benten becomes a vigilante, and takes it upon himself to hunt down the reckless drivers that fill the streets at night. Being a master mechanic, Rick spends his time converting his pickup truck into an armed and dangerous vehicle – with speed to take on the fastest car, and strength to make sure in a one-on-one situation, he will be the only survivor. The cops soon find out about the vigilante known only as the “Gladiator” and do all they can to catch him before his citizen’s arrests go one step too far – but will they find the Gladiator before the Gladiator finds Skull? When the two finally meet, it’s a duel to the death and maybe an end to Rick’s career as the vigilante. Continue reading