Monday, May 27, 2013

Head Trauma (2006)

So, I had some extra home-made pizza dough sitting in the fridge which needed to be eaten pronto. Rather than make more pizzas I decided to experiment - a lot. The experiments turned into a minor garlicky cheese explosion in the kitchen (oven). Delicious, but still a minor explosion. After cleaning up and digesting the goodness I decided it was time to settle down to a horror movie (like you do).

Movie of choice: independent film Head Trauma. The title somehow seemed appropriate for the day, and from what I gathered about the story line, this movie, although a little messy at times, came out wonderfully. Voted best indie feature in 2006 by Rue Morgue magazine, I decided to continue with the experimental day and give this movie a shot.

And my goodness, what a film. Although, I'll have to agree with some who said "'s a little rough around the edges..." over-all, this is a very entertaining movie. The plot is pretty unique, heartfelt, and horrifying. The basement scenes alone will certainly give you classic heebee jeebees, while the growling (that's right, growling) throughout the entire film will absolutely set you on edge until the end.

The dialog and facial expressions throughout the film are, how shall I say, a little funny without/with intending to be. At points I'm not sure which.

The scenery and cinematography is lovely - haunting - gross and lovely.

There is no gore just gross. There is no direct violence, just a good solid punch when it's needed.

The characters are engaging, even the typical jerk across the street in the blue tracksuit  Why always the tracksuit, jerks? Anyways...

I recommend this film for patient horror movie fans interested in psychological supernatural horror. Recommend pairing: an experiment - preferably something from Scranton, PA.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

King Kong vs Godzilla (1962)

One of my very favorite things to do on Saturday night is somehow manage to stay up until 10:00 PM and watch Wolfman Mac's Chiller Drive-In Cinema. Then, if by some miracle I haven't fallen asleep by midnight, I watch Off Beat Cinema. These very entertaining tongue-in-cheek adventures show some of the best cult classic horror and science fiction movies. Ever.

Wolfman Mac's Chiller Drive-In is hosted by the Wolfman and his crass, insulting, ever clever sack-of-bones side kick, Boney Bob. Check out there web site, and better yet, check out their show - tonight!

On their website you'll find their episode guide, blog, updates, and videos. Not since Elvira's Movie Macabre have I seen such delightfully horrible horror movies hosted by such delightfully entertaining characters. I love this show. LOVE IT.

Off Beat Cinema is a another television series that shows some of the strangest, wildest, and worst movies ever made. But they're cool, man, you dig? See, Off Beat is hosted by beatniks, Maxwell Truth, Bird (the painter) and the cooler than cool, Zelda.

To quote their fresh new website (or, pad - you dig?): "With movie information and introductions from the beatnik hosts, viewers are led through espresso expressionism, cafe au lait creature features and java jarring thrillers."

Although also tongue-in-cheek, they are a bit more focused on bringing on the weird, discussing the history of the film, and well frankly, I just dig that beatnik style, you know cool cat?

The reason I bring up two of my favorite television shows is because they have both shown: King Kong vs Godzilla. A movie so profoundly mind-blowing, I mean numbing, I mean blowing, that I couldn't come up with much to say expect essentially, 'watch these guys watch this movie'. So there you go.

This movie is about King Kong and Godzilla - that is really all you need to know because everything else in the film won't make much sense. And I can't be certain, but I think this movie was filmed in Fraggle Rock and the sets were designed by Doozers. In any case, I spent most of the film with my jaw dropped, mouth breathing. This movie is so crazy it's perfect. (Think Jackson Pollock paintings...or don't, it's up to you.). If you don't believe me, watch the trailer and hold your head tight because it just might explode:

Stay cool, ghouls and boys!

UPDATE - it would appear that this movie is now on the Internet Archive:

Monday, May 13, 2013

The Curse Of The Cat People (1944)

What a delightful film.

The title is misleading, however. A more accurate title would be: Visits of the Ghost 'Cat' Person. The Curse Of The Cat People is a delightful film about a six year old dreamer just looking for friends. This is a sad story, actually, and I would not categorize it as horror at all.

Having once been a young girl who's report card was covered in red "great student but day dreams too much" ink, I sympathized with this little nugget of gold. It can be very hard as a child, trying to reach out to parents and friends - trying to share day dreams, hopes, fears, and visions, and if that is the worst experience while growing up then you had a pretty good. But I digress.

This movie is all about growing. Simply, growing as a person. It's not a movie about wicked Cat People at all. In fact, the 'Cat Person' is really good, kind, and a friend to a lonely soul. I dare say it's a  love ghost story and a very beautiful one.

I'm very glad I watched these two films (Cat People, and Curse Of The Cat People) in chronological order. Had I watched this film before the first (Cat People), nothing would make sense.

Let me tell you a few things about this movie that will make you clap your hands and say "ya!" (once you see the film):

  • The Slap (you'll know it when you see it)
  • Edward (who's name in real life is Sir Lancelot)
  • The Main Character (the little girl)
  • Her friendship with her imaginary friend (The Cat Person)
  • The Mom and the Teacher (because...just remember, it's the 1940's - these two might blow your mind.)
  • Everyone else (you'll likely not say 'Ya' but you'll clap your hands and probably say "WTF!")

Watch this film with children. I believe it's kid-friendly and a wonderful film for the day dreamers - especially those with 'imaginary' friends or who simply see the world in another light. Have a fancy drink while your at it. Something special, delectable, and precious.

Everyone in this film is precious - breakable, delicate, sensitive and delightful.

You can watch it now through the Internet Archive!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Cat People (1942)

What a remarkable film!

Okay, so I had Netflix mail me a double feature (Cat People and Curse of the Cat People) because I'm a huge fan of two for one deals. I wasn't expecting two excellent films!

I approached this film expecting to be entertained by bad dialog, bad acting, and a bad story line. Bad in a cheesy good way, of course. Although Cat People had some cheesy moments, over all it was wonderful.

I quickly became absorbed in the story, despite the 'sexually active women who have feelings turn into monsters' message [I'm not amused raised eyebrow], and the moments of suspense and horror were captured so beautifully that I actually burrowed into my blankets a little more [I'm very amused raised eyebrows]. I'm speaking specifically of the rather famous pool seen. WATCH IT NOW:

You see what I mean? Did you ever think a cat monster would stalk you in an in-door pool late at night? I didn't think so. Kinda scary, huh? I KNOW. Little messed up, very creative - excellent work cast and crew.

A good deal of the dialog is hysterical quotable, but it works. And  you'll also laugh your way through scenes of everyday life in 1942, all of which are illegal now, and sigh, thankful all these things are illegal now. There is also a scene with a maid that transcends all categories except exceptionally hilarious. Don't worry, you'll know it when you see it.

Great film. Perfect for horror fans, classic fans, creature feature fans, and not too scary movie fans.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Maniac (1963)

Okay, well - nothing brings a bunch of small town French folk, an American, and a maniac together like cognac, a jukebox, dice, more booze, hot weather, horse rides on the beach, a mother after her daughter's love interest, and a breakout from the insane asylum. Wait. What? But of course!

This Maniac should not be confused with the 1980's film of the same title and directed by William Lustig, because they are not remotely the same... or are they...? I have no idea, I haven't seen the 1980's Maniac. No, seriously, I'm sure they are not remotely the same.

Moving on.

The film opens with an attack on a teenage girl, a sort of retaliation was made, and then an American showed up who ditched his girlfriend in the small French town - and the good ideas kept coming.

The movie moved a little slow for me and the suspense was so-so. Although I was surprised by some of the character's actions and decisions, the outcomes were not all that surprising. This movie was more of a suspense/thriller than full on horror. It is a pretty alright choice for Alfred Hitchcock fans.

The ending, I'm afraid, was a little hilarious because it was so over-the-top. I think it is worth noting that the young lady who survived the attack at the beginning of the film is the most well-adjusted and wisest person throughout the entire movie.

Suggested Pairing: cognac on the rocks, french bread, and plenty of cheese.

Frankenstein's Monster Shares Some Advice

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Society (1989)

Things get started off real good in this 1989 Brian Yunza film with a pretty dynamite DVD menu.  I put the DVD in and got sidetracked, so it ended up playing in a loop for like 15 minutes.  Last time that happened to me (Top Gun), I came to with a .45 in my hand about ready to blow my brains out.  Since that didn't happen with Society, I'll call it a win.

Mullets will never be accepted in...
This little horror nugget is about young Billy Whitney, a seemingly popular, yet somewhat disturbed student at a Beverly Hills high school.  He's always seemed to have a rocky relationship with his parents and sister, and he slowly picks up clues pointing towards some bizarre history in not just his family, but society as well.  

Let me just get this right out of the way: this movie doesn't make a goddamned lick of sense.  I mean, it moves along from A to B just fine, but when all is said and done, this thing just not playing with a full deck.  But none of that really matters because, holy smokes, this ending is a real doozy.  I'm not going to go into details, but lets just say, it gives David Cronenberg, The Thing, and Re-Animator a run for their money.  You're just going to have to rend it to find out what exactly 'shunting' is.

Not a whole lot else to say about this movie.  The first act is pretty generic, the second act is kind of boring (save for a few creepy moments and some fine nude acting by love interest), and a out of this world, weird, sick, fascinating ending that mostly makes up for the rest.  

If your a fan of those semi-cheapie 80's effects horror films, forgotten little gems, and mullets, I would recommend checking this movie out.