Snoop Dogg's Hood of Horror



Xenon Pictures

NEW YORK -- "Are y'all ready for some crazy shit?" inquires the titular host of this horror anthology, released in more than 100 theaters throughout the country last weekend in an effort to mop up any "Spider-Man 3" spillover. Playing the "Crib Keeper" in this urban takeoff on "Tales From the Crypt," Snoop Dogg somehow manages to project an aura of detached suavity even under these cheesy circumstances.

Director Stacy Title, who has come a long way down from her startling debut feature "The Last Supper" (1995), helms this trilogy of tales featuring enough gratuitous gore and nudity to attract, if not significant theatrical business, a steady stream of video rentals.

A surprising array of talent has been recruited for the production, including (sadly) Billy Dee Williams, Ernie Hudson, Jason Alexander, Method Man, Danny Trejo, Anson Mount and a variety of NFL, NBA and World Wrestling Federation stars making cameo appearances.

Probably the most entertaining aspects of the feature are the outlandish anime sequences, created by Japan's Madhouse ("Tokyo Hunter") and "supervised" by visual effects Oscar winner John Gaeta ("The Matrix"), that open the film and bridge the three chapters.

The segments offer a graffiti artist (Daniella Alonso) who receives a magic tattoo from the devil that enables her to get even with her enemies, a group of Vietnam vets who get revenge on their evil slumlords and a rising rap star named Sod (Pooch Hall), who takes his stage moniker all too literally. They lack any wit or genuine scares, though their raunchy, comic book style broadness might appeal to younger audiences.