Outlaw bikers on a crime driven rampage !
Scott Jeune | kerhonkson, ny | 04/20/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"MGM's latest installment of the Midnite Movies gives us a double feature of late sixties biker films. In Angel Unchained, biker Angel gives up his colors to go on his own. On his way to finding himself he runs into A couple hippies hassled by some goobery dune buggy people. Of course he takes the hippies' side because one of them is a young Tyne Daly, and next thing you know, the fight over the lettuce patch begins at the hippie compound to the point where Angel's old bros need to be called in (note: in the pacing of the film he finds them awful fast... were they around the block pretending not to follow him, or what?). High points are the Aldo Ray scene as an older sheriff presiding over a parking lot brawl, and Daly as the love interest- she had that street smart timbre to her voice even back then which lends a credibility in the scene of her botched attack. Flippin the disc, we have Bruce Dern in "Cycle Savages", a much smaller and more soundstagey (read: cheap) film than "Angel Unchained". Dern hams it up to the point where I think that perhaps they told him the plot and he just impovised his lines- it's a fun thing to watch. This film is so bleak it would make Hubert Selby, Jr. drink Clorox. There is A likeable character in this film, and even he comes off as a dolt. A starving artist draws a bunch of biker sketches (hello:dum idea) and they decide to come up with a way to hurt him by having a mongolian cluster and raping a girl with an ice cream cone. (...no, excuse me. She's having an ice cream cone and they take her back and rape her. That would just be sick.) So, anyway, they come up with an idea for hurting him at the same time the bike gang's leader is using the downstair's neighbor as a tail for the artist because her sister is being sent down the road of brain control and depravity by the leader, but she's falling in love with the artist...you see where this is heading. So, "Angel Unchained" is a much better film of the two, but you'll like "Cycle Savages" if you like your soap operas with a good chain whupping time and again (I'd like to see that on "Days of Our Lives". Thanx."
3 Stars for "Angel Unchained." The other one's a piece of ex
- Durrkk | Ohio/PA border USA | 11/07/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"ANGEL UNCHAINED (1970; 86 minutes): Don Stroud stars as an Arizona biker who decides he's had enough of the biker lifestyle. He roams off and ends up at a hippie commune where he hooks up with a young Tyne Daly. It doesn't take long for redneck cowboy dune buggy riders to enter the picture (I'm not making this up). They try to chase the hippies away. Hence, Stroud goes back to his biker buddies to enlist them to help stave off the rednecks.
"Angel Unchained" is definitely a Grade C flick. You'll observe this right off at the silly carnival brawl sequence. This is not top notch filmmaking, that's for sure. Despite this, after about 30-40 minutes I strangely started getting involved in the story; I actually started caring about the characters and what would ultimately happen, even though I shouldn't have. The bikers are depicted as wild outcasts revelers (who drink and use drugs), but generally likable at the same time. The scenic Arizona locations are a highlight.
The end credits showcase each actor individually in that dramatic way that used to be popular (e.g. "The Dirty Dozen"); all it did for me was make me bust out in hilarious laughter. NOTE TO THE FILMMAKERS: It wasn't a good or serious enough film to warrant such a venerable closing.
Bottom Line: "Angel Unchained" wasn't made very well or very seriously; yet, if one makes the necessary psychological adjustments and gives it a chance (i.e. 30-40 minutes of your time), it's fun, likable, entertaining and even a mite engrossing. I shouldn't like it, but I do. Go figure.
THE CYCLE SAVAGES (1969; 85 minutes): This one starts off like it might be a decent biker flick in the manner of "Angel Unchained." The hard rock theme (pre-heavy metal) is enjoyable and the opening credits sequence is imaginative. Unfortunately these are the only good things I can say about this flick. The plot is really really DUMB; like it was conjured up by a 12 year-old. It involves evil biker leader Bruce Dern getting upset over a sketch artist for making drawings of his gang in wild revelry. Apparently, Dern believes the sketches can be used to convict him and his gang (WHY SURE!). The dialogue and acting are just as bad.
Bottome Line: I can't tell you how awful this "film" is. It's only worthwhile as a period-piece oddity.
If you want to view a really great late 60s/early 70s biker flick, catch the very first one, the infamous "The Wild Angels" from 1966 starring Peter Fonda, Bruce Dern, Nancey Sinatra and Diane Ladd. "The Wild Angels" is simultaneously incredibly shocking and profoundly brilliant (yes, even though it's essentially a Roger Corman 'B' film). See my Amazon review for full details."
Mediocre biker drama.
S. Spears | Florence, MA | 12/27/2009
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Don Stroud stars as Angel, an outlaw biker who decides to leave his gang behind, and live in a hippie commune. The premise of this film isn't really credible, since bikers had a completely different value system than hippies. The typical outlaw biker was a macho, bad-ass type, who relished using violence as a way of life. By contrast, hippies were peaceful, and hated violence.
For a while in the late 60s, many hippies did try to mix with bikers though, and even romanticized the biker lifestyle. But hippies backed-away from glorifying bikers, by the time this film was made. By that time, hippies realized that they couldn't condone the violent biker culture. Especially after a biker gang was involved in the beating death, of a young man who attended the infamous Altamont concert in '69.
Don Stroud's character, Angel, is full of contradictions and conflicts. He wants to leave his old gang, but calls on them to help defend the hippies from constant harassment, by the local rednecks. Angel falls for one of the hippie women, but then rejects her attempts to get close to him. When his gang arrives at the commune, Angel isn't quite sure if he'd like to rejoin them, or stay at the commune and morph into a hippie. Angel is a guy that's just very hard to fathom.
Like most biker films, this one has it's share of violence, drug abuse, wild sexual escapades, and lots of fast, daring motorcycle rides. There are many biker movies made during this era, that are much more entertaining by comparison. Angel Unchained lacks the electric energy, that made other biker movies so compelling, in the late 60s/early 70s. If you like biker movies, there's many of them with much more pizazz, than Angel Unchained.
Angel unchained/Cycle Savages
Lawrence S. Reiff | 03/31/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This movie was viewed by me as being a fashion statement from the era inwhich it was produced. Having been a biker as far back as 1967, I can reflect on the dress code for the movie as well as the motorcycles used as being accurate. I enjoy watching this movie DVD."