3 Dev Adam (TR - DVD)
Captain America and El Santo fight the evil Spider-Man in this Turkish turkey...
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Turkey is shocked by a brazen crime spree perpetrated by the villainous Spider-Man. The Turkish government calls in the assistance of North America's greatest champion, Captain America, and Mexico's patron saint of wrestling, El Santo! The (commonly unmasked) super-heroes get to work quickly, kicking ass and taking names all across the city. But the crafty Spider-Man has a plan, what this plan entails is really anyone's guess, but rest assured, it's devious.
Oh. My. God. You can prepare yourself for a film going experience for days, reading reviews, re-checking the box art, but at the end of the day all you can do is drop your jaw. I don't even know why I'm bothering with writing a review here; all this film requires is a synopsis and a series of screen caps. Anyone wondering whether this is a DVD for them need only judge for themselves. I could talk about Spider-Man's giant eyebrows and bright blue eye shadow, his dime-store, children's pyjama set costume, or his physique, which seems to reveal a few too many trips to the Spider-fridge, but a picture really is worth a thousand words.
But hey, I've got time to tell you all about the Turkish assumptions of Mexican fashion. Santo wears a deliciously garish half poncho/half jacket with a stitched profile of an American Indian on the back. I've also got some time to tell you about Captain America's refusal to tuck in the frayed edges of his cowl, of Spider-Man's Spider Mobile (I'm not too good with cars, but it appears to be a Plymouth Valiant to me), and the scene-setting opening where a woman is buried up to her neck in beach sand and decapitated with a speedboat engine, still attached to the boat. Oh, and note to the filmmakers: guinea pigs are not large mice.
To the flick's credit, the brawls are supremely entertaining. Santo and the Cap'n have an amusing habit of partial-suplexing opponents and using their flailing limbs as weapons against other attackers. This was obviously the one part of the filmmaking process that inspired a thoughtful analysis from the filmmakers; lord knows no one stopped to think about the plot. I stopped trying to figure out what was going on once I figured out that the director was simply biding his time till the next fight sequence, which seemed to take place every four to seven minutes. Is the audience getting bored yet? Well toss in some fisticuffs!
I said in my Starcrash review (a bad film I liked a bit more than this one simply because of its ambition) that there really is a hair-thin line between those movies that are so bad that they're good, and those that are simply bad. 3 Dev Adam (Three Mighty Men) remains entertaining because of its breakneck pacing. I could never claim boredom while watching this film. I'll go on record and say that I find most of these ‘Cheese Classics’ boring, and though ineptitude is amusing, I cannot see myself recommending ninety percent of the really awful films I've seen. I am recommending this one, but only to those who know what they're getting themselves into.
The Onar website has this warning of 3 Dev Adam:
CONDITION OF TRANSFER: All original materials-NEGATIVES etc- of this film were destroyed in a fire years ago. So, this transfer comes from the ONLY surviving elements and the quality is FAR FROM PERFECT but BETTER THAN ANY EXISTING BOOTLEG.
Rarely have truer words been spoken. If you've heard of a digital video aliment you can find it here. Edge enhancement? Got you covered. Digital Blocking? You bet. Low level noise, halos, colour blooming, bleeding, artefacts bigger than your head? Yes, yes, yes, and yes. But wait, there's also a decent collection of original film element problems. Over-exposures, low lighting, splicing issues, this is a virtual depository of deficiency. It adds to the charm I suppose. I should also note that quite a bit of footage appears to have been lost, and continuity can start to suffer. Not that it matters at all.
The disc's audio pretty much follows the suit of the disc's video. This isn't the worst DVD release I've ever heard, but it rounds out the bottom twenty to be sure. Hissing, distorted vocals, a music track that swings wildly from to loud to near silence, and a few nice, loud 'pops' are all present and accounted for. If it wasn't for the subtitles I don't think even a Turk could discern the majority of the dialogue on the disc, but just like the video, the audio track is good enough for a film of this calibre.
If ever there was a film that cried out for a Joel Hodgson or Joe Bob Briggs style commentary track, it had to be this one. Or better yet, a dead serious cast a crew commentary, one that never acknowledges the stupidity of the film. Those are always fun. Alas, the closest we can get, it seems, is a trio of interviews with an uncomfortable director and two equally uncomfortable actors. I didn't really learn too much from these sit downs, but they're amusing to watch in their own little way. Be warned that these chats can really drag.
The disc also houses an assortment of Turkish trash flick trailers, all titles seemingly available on DVD from Onar releasing. Sometimes bad films are best in small doses, as any owner of any of the various trash trailer compilations on the market will attest too. I was especially fond of the Klink film's still frame trailers. And for you scholars out there we've also got a few filmographies and biographies of the main contributors, along with a swinging art gallery.
How do I score this? I hate the scoring system sometimes. The film is horrible, video quality is sub Super-8, the sound isn't exactly digital quality, and for the most part, there aren't any meaty special features. So it's rubbish, right? Well, it depends on your point of view. I know I enjoyed myself, and I know others will revel in the artless, awkward, bumbling, gauche, ham-handed, incapable, incompetent, inefficient, inexpert, maladroitic, undexterous, unfacile, ungraceful, unhandy, and unproficient work of our Turkish friend's finest comic book adaptations. Thank you Turkey, and thank you Thesaurus.com. Now if we could only get the Turkish Spider-Man and Italy's Diabolik to duke it out...
PS: This limited edition has a hand-written number stamp on the back. How's that for the Midas touch?
You can purchase this, and many other euro imports from my friends at Xploitedcinema.com, and check out their new DVD page graphics designed by yours truly.
Review by Gabriel Powers
Release Date: 25th May 2006
Disc Type: Single side, single layer
Aspect: 1.33:1 Full Frame
Audio: Dolby Digital Mono Turkish
Subtitles: English, Greek
Extras: Interviews, Biographies, Filmographies, Photogallery, Trailers
Easter Egg: No
Director: T. Fikret Uçak
Cast: Aytekin Akkaya, Deniz Erkanat, Yavuz Selekman
Length: 81 minutes
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