Neil’s Horror Corner: The Weird, Weird West, Part 1

Neil’s Horror Corner: The Weird, Weird West, Part 1

Dead Noon (Igotshde Productions, 2009), Mad at the Moon (Republic Pictures
Home Video, 1992), and Bullets for the Dead (Visionquest Entertainment, 2015)

I’m sometimes asked why I haven’t got around to watching Oppenheimer or Killers of the Flower Moon yet, and that’s because I’m too busy watching this sort of stuff.

Dead Noon (2009) – Prime

Stand-off with six guns?

Yep. Flaming bullets too.

Uncomfortable chaps?

Zombies, demons etc.

Any good?

No, ma’am.

Here we are, the first of 20 horror westerns, and we get stuck in with a terrible one. Bookended with narration by Kane Hodder in a ten-gallon hat and oatmeal face pack, this is a deathly dull revenge flick. The story had potential, but the whole endeavour is buried in Boot Hill by terrible production quality, questionable direction choices and rubbish sound. The whole thing has awful interlacing issues too – it’s like watching a film through a video viewfinder.

Off to a bad start.


Mad at the Moon (1992) – Prime

Stand-off with six guns?

Excitement? In this economy?

Uncomfortable chaps?

Moon-induced hairiness.

Any good?


If you like slow burns, this is for you. Mary Stuart Masterson stars as Jenny, a 25-yr-old desperate to find the sort of love she reads about in her French novels, but married off to a scruffy-looking farmer. Things get complicated when it’s really his half-brother whose spurs she wants to jangle, and complicated further still when, about 50 mins in, her husband turns into a semi-werewolf. Shenanigans ensue.

It’s a nice looking film, but slower than a steer with a bum hoof. Oh well.


Bullets for the Dead (2015) – Tubi

Stand-off with six guns?

Plenty of shootin’

Uncomfortable chaps?

Zombies? Cannibal Lepers? The jury’s out.

Any good?

A decent effort. Everyone gives it their all in this tale of a ganky-eyed bounty Hunter bringing in a bunch of bandits during an undead uprising. It looks good, albeit a bit clean, and the simple story just gets on with it, tossing in some black humour, guts and mad nuns. It’s not a masterpiece, but it’s an ok time, and that’s a win for me when I’m doing these watch projects.


Eyes of Fire (Elysian Pictures, 1983) and Cowboys vs Samurai vs Werewolves (Uncia Films, 2015)

Eyes of Fire (1983) – Prime

Stand-off with six guns?

Some rifle action.

Uncomfortable chaps?

Witches! Demons! Mud people!

Any good?

I went looking for weird, and I got bonkers. This here is a bit of a cult classic that I must admit I’d never heard of. In the woods of the new frontier, a shifty preacher leads a small flock of followers into the ‘promised land’; actually a witch-infested valley. There things rapidly go downhill, all accompanied by mad visuals and a bizarre soundtrack.

I really feel like this film could be a new favorite — it’s the closest to feeling drunk without touching a drop, and I found myself rewinding a couple of times because I couldn’t believe what I’d just seen. It’s strange, funny and totally out there, and going to the top of my list so far.


Cowboys vs Samurai vs Werewolves (2015) – Tubi

Stand-off with six guns?

Yes, and katanas.

Uncomfortable chaps?

Werewolf, uncivil folks.

Any good?

No. The direction, editing, sound, acting and effects are all horrible. A 2015 film shot on a 1999 camcorder. I hate-watched it, and gave it one mark for the title.


High Moon/Howlers (Copper Kid Productions/Quest Pacifica, 2019),
Grim Prairie Tales (East-West Film Partners, 1990)

High Moon (2019) – Tubi

Also distributed under the name Howlers.

Stand-off with six guns?

Yes, and axes.

Uncomfortable chaps?

Werewolf biker gang.

Any good?

Back to back films featuring cowboys, werewolves and a ninja! Granted, the ninja is only in it for five mins, but what are the odds? Anyhoo, this flick tells that time old story about a gang of werewolves and their ‘slayer’ dying in the Wild West and being resurrected in modern times. ‘Stranger out of time’ shenanigans ensue.

It’s a mixed bag, everyone gave it their all, but the film was hamstrung by a dull subplot about a marriage falling apart, and the werewolf makeups were a strange hybrid of ropey ‘Planet of the Apes’ masks and Michael Jackson’s were-kitty from ‘Thriller’. Chuck in some dodgy CG blood effects, and it’s all a bit meh.


Grim Prairie Tales (1990) – YouTube

Stand-off with six guns?

An honest to god gunfight.

Uncomfortable chaps?

Some supernatural shenanigans.

Any good?

I’m a sucker for anthologies, and with that love for the genre comes the knowledge that it is very rare for every story to be good.

This is no exception — of the four stories, two interested me, and the other two bored me. The good ones were SO different in tone from the dull ones, both with a couple of outstandingly gonzo moments (for those in the know, I’m referring to the ‘pregnant’ lady and the animated interlude in the gunslinger story). That said, this film gets more than half points, due to the extraordinary wraparound scene featuring Brad Dourif and James Earl Jones. Jones in particular is a force of nature in this flick, and worth the price of admission (surely this phrase will be extinct soon).

This YouTube quality was pretty awful — so try to find it elsewhere if you can.


Here’s the list of films I’ll be selecting from for this series:


They Wait
Mad at the Moon
Eyes of Fire
Luz: The Flower of Evil
The Wind
Western Religion
The Pale Door


Gallow Walkers


The Burrowers
Kill or be Killed
Bullets for the Dead
A Vampire’s Tale
Devil’s Deal
West of Hell
Curse of the Undead
Curse of Demon Mountain
Jezebeth 2: Hour of the Gun
The Dead and the Damned


High Moon
Devil Rider
Hell’s Belle
Grimm Prairie Tales

Read Part II of The Weird, Weird West here.

Neil Baker’s last article for us was a review of the game Call of the Sea. Neil spends his days watching dodgy movies, most of them terrible, in the hope that you might be inspired to watch them too. He is often asked why he doesn’t watch ‘proper’ films, and he honestly doesn’t have a good answer. He is an author, illustrator, outdoor educator and owner of April Moon Books (

Notify of

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Thomas Parker

What?! No Jonah Hex? Them’s fightin’ words, pardner!

Neil Baker

I understand your disappointment, Thomas, but one self-imposed rule for these marathons is they all have to be first time watches, and I’ve seen Jonah Hex twice (because I’m not clever).

Thomas Parker

And I’ve seen Jonah Hex twice because I’m downright idiotic!

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x