Hell's Bloody Devils (1970)

Genres - Action, Crime, Spy Film  |   Sub-Genres - Action Thriller, Trash Film  |   Run Time - 92 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - PG
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Drive-in auteur Al Adamson cobbled Hell's Bloody Devils together in his usual waste not, want not spirit, and even if the result is more incoherent than his other patchwork productions, it's brawling, brainless fun nonetheless. It is easy to see how indiscriminating audiences might be fooled by the assemblage of cool spy thriller and hot-blooded biker fantasy; if one isn't paying close attention (not unusual at drive-in theaters), Adamson's ruse is nicely spliced, with team player Vicki Volante serving as a bridge between the separate stories to simulate cohesion. However, producer Samuel M. Sherman has lovingly restored the full version of Hell's Bloody Devils for DVD release after over 30 years in limbo, and modern audiences watching the film in their homes without distraction will immediately see the seams strain. Aside from Volante's character, the titular biker gang and the Nazi counterfeiters have no interaction whatsoever, and the cyclists' sleazy activities (including LSD orgies, rape, and motorist abuse) exist only to pad time and add exploitation value. That said, Adamson was a director who could always substitute energy for logic, so Hell's Bloody Devils is as vigorous as it is nonsensical, with a great music score that buzzes with fuzz guitar and spy-theme clich├ęs. Along with Volante, the cast is classic Al Adamson stock company, with Robert Dix as a biker named "Cunk," Kent Taylor as Nazi royalty, Broderick Crawford and Scott Brady as the FBI, Greydon Clark and Gary Kent as thugs, plus John Carradine as a bird-shop owner with secret information for the hero. KFC icon Col. Harland Sanders' cameo ("Isn't that the best chicken you've ever tasted?") was exchanged for free lunches for cast and crew over the course of the shoot, proving Al Adamson to be an early pioneer in the now-pervasive art of product placement, a cinematic crime far worse than exploiting the public's taste for sex and violence.