A review by Robert Long II ©2012
Produced and directed by: Lee Doll
Cinematography and visual effects by: Jeff Herberger
Written by: Alfred Guy
Starring: Paul R. Sieber, Alfred Guy, George Stover, Jennifer Rouse, Vanessa Rae Bent
Also starring: Jason Patrick Presson, Wayne Shipley, Steve Rifkin, Sam Lukowski, Heather Clark, Kim Hoang, and Louanna Lee
This is very much a Lee Doll Film Production. It has action, romance, comedy, musical numbers, cat fights, drama, and throws in the kitchen sink. It has pretty women, homages to Hitchcock, H.P. Lovecraft, men drinking coffee in boxing rings, and a lot of fights, nightmares, and suspense in the city of Baltimore.
DVD STORY SYNOPSIS: The Fixer (Paul R. Sieber) and Yeb-Beb (Alfred Guy) are the intended victims of the Cult of Nyarlathotep. Evil Cult Leader Nez (George Stover), has duped a mysterious stranger (Jason Patrick Presson) to unleash chaos and madness. Magic, mysticism, and a monster combine with fencing, fighting, and foul-play as our heroes uncover a Dangerous Deception.
Actor George Stover gets to play a rare evil role (he was portrayed as a bad guy in BLOOD MASSACRE and HARVESTERS as well) as Nez, the nemesis of Alfred Guy’s character Yeb Beb. Paul R. Sieber has taken over the role of William Lawson (The Fixer) from Brian St. August. Sieber plays Lawson without the gravelly voice, and with some James Bond flair. He also has a habit of impersonating Clint Eastwood and Arnold Schwarzenegger when he is under duress.
I’ll dive in as much as I can: The film starts with a James Bond-like credit sequence (pretty women, psychedelic lighting, and a song by Louanna Lee), and goes into a scene where Nez is torturing a photography model for information on the Fixer. We then go on to the mean green screen streets of Chinatown. Yeb Beb is fighting two to three hooded people (one of them appears to be Paul R. Sieber himself) before he meets up with the character portrayed by Jason Patrick Presson. From there they get into a battle with fighting sticks. A person watching them flashes gang signs. At this point Yeb Beb wakes up in his 3rd story basement apartment and discusses his nightmare with the Fixer.
I will admit – after watching this a few times – I am fuzzy about what happens from here on out. Yeb Beb goes to a former student to seek her help in battling the occult. The Fixer goes to an open mic night at a record store and meets a mysterious woman (Vanessa Rae Bent). Nez is also at that open mic night and follows and kills a young woman. Chaos, madness and destruction reigns supreme as the Fixer gets captured and people’s faces start to warp. It seems it will be up to Yeb Beb to pull it all together and save the human race.
There are positive points to this production – most of which involve the actors. Everyone seems to be committed to character and gives a good performance. It is very apparent that a lot of blood, sweat and tears went into this labor of love and to boasts some good production values and is produced well.
There are a few points that could be improved upon. One would be the story structure. This is a very densely packed story, and judging from my story description above, there were times that I didn’t fully understand it. Some clarification and streamlining to the plot would have helped.
The other would be in the visual effects department. If anything – I would say in the future it would be better to use actual sets or locations – rather than green screen. Whether it is using stills or actual footage, it becomes all too apparent that the performers are not sharing the same space as their surroundings. This can lead to taking the viewer out of the story. In this feature it is used for outdoor locations, boxing rings, police stations, photography studios, villain hideouts, restaurants – it is used far too much in my opinion.
The same can be said for some of the digital warping effects as well. In the past – before computers – this would have been accomplished in a series of cuts and the use of prosthetics. Unfortunately in this modern age, it is a little more obvious to audiences when a digital video filter is being dialed in over footage. Sometimes cutting back on such an effect can work well, as a little can go a long way.
The DVD box art and the trailers boast that this movie will blow your mind; that’s a pretty good description. Watching DANGEROUS DECEPTION is like mixing James Bond with 1970s Dr. Who, and throwing in a lot of Monty Python animation for good measure. It comes close to what it must be like watching YELLOW SUBMARINE and 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY while dropping acid.
My recommendation is to get together with some old college buddies to watch this on a beer and pizza movie night. The digital effects mixed with the weirdness of the story will have you and your mates peeling with laughter.
Interested in picking it up? You can get it HERE!