It's one of those weeks where I'm awaiting will they/wont they? work news so thought I'd pass the time catching up with a few old friends.
By friends I mean films and by catch up I mean watch and (hastily) review.
I don't have any real friends.
I mean come on, you've probably been out for the night having fun and I'm stuck in watching this.
Blue Sunshine (1977 - or maybe even 78 no one seems sure).
Dir: Jeff Lieberman.
Cast: Zalman King, Deborah Winters, Robert Walden, Bill Cameron, Ann Cooper, Mark Goddard, Brion James, Adriana Shaw and Charles Siebert.
|There's a bald maniac in there, and he's going bat shit!|
You know it's the 70's when your movie for the evening opens with a grainy shot of a massive full moon whilst and synthesized kazoo soundtrack blares in the background before finally settling on a hideously flock wallpapered corridor resplendent with brown, bell-bottomed extras.
But it's not all flares and flammable fabrics as we're soon introduced to a diddy doctor named David Bloom (Walden) who's spending his evening eying up cancer stricken old ladies with a look of either mild concern or just plain confusion.
Don't worry tho' because before we can get bored with all this caring stuff we're suddenly taken to a gorgeous n' groovy 'pad' (ask your granddad) where Lego haired homebody Wendy (Cooper, a kinda council estate version of Adrienne Barbeau) is uncomfortably reading a bedtime story to a couple of children.
I'm assuming that they're hers and that she hasn't just kidnapped them but with low budget 70's horror you can never be sure, as it happens she's babysitting for her neighbour in order to take her mind off her impeding divorce from local congressman Ed Flemming (Lost In Space star Goddard).
I'm sorry, I appear to have inadvertently popped a daytime soap in my player in place of a cult 70's classic...
|Your mums cum face....trust me I know.|
Not too surprisingly she's feeling quite tender as well as prone to upsetting headaches so as you can probably imagine that when halfway thru' the kiddies bedtime story (it's Rapunzel by the way) the small girl child tugs on her hair pulling a handful out that Wendy gets a wee bit upset.
Suddenly John returns home and just stares blankly at his wife and pal for a few seconds more than necessary.
Jumping around even more than your mum on speed we're suddenly at a hip n' happening party where the bush-barnetted beefcake Jerry Zipkin (latter day erotic thriller god and former Jesus, King) is getting down with his lady love Alicia (Winters) whilst Blade Runner star Brion James squats on the arm of a chair pretending to be a budgie.
|Savile: The Return.|
That'll be when check-jacketed pube-haired Frannie Packet (Crystal, brother of Billy) decides to impress the group with an impromptu Tom Jones impression whilst fondling the buttocks of one of his pals girlfriends.
Which is nice.
Playful scuffling ensues with culminates in the aforementioned lady accidentally pulling of Frannie's wig which not only reveals his massive shiny head but causes his eyes to bulge like massive eggs.
Eggs with pupils drawn on them obviously.
He legs it out of the front door with his (bloke) buddies - and Jerry's girlfriend, well she is the female lead - in hot pursuit, the ladies staying in the warm and get pissed which really sums up how they must feel about the whole thing if I'm honest.
As Jerry and Alicia start rifling thru the bins for any sign of their follically challenged chum and the other buddies drive around in circles Frannie sneaks back into the party and starts drooling over the dinner table, much to the ladies disgust.
|Nutted but still sucking.|
|Leslie Dixon: Still fears the chives.|
Oh yes and to also have an almost proto-Will Graham flashback/vision of the crime being committed as the ex-cops pet budgie squawks the words 'Blue Sunshine' from a nearby wardrobe.
If that wasn't freaky enough it seems that O'Malley was something of an amateur photographer and has photos of many of the main cast pinned on his wall, the words 'Blue Sunshine' written below each of them.
Heading back to Dr Blooms office (look the running time isn't that long) Jerry discovers that ten years previously, when they were all students at the local tech they'd all bought doses of acid (named....wait for it....'Blue Sunshine') from Bloom himself.
Luckily (for him) he was a good guy and never tried the stuff himself.
His bald spot is fortunately quite natural.
It's now left to Jerry (and Alicia) to find the other ex-dopeheads and warm them of their condition before it's too late, which in Wendy's case is probably about now seeing as she's quite literally just flipped her wig and started chasing the kids around the house with a bread knife.
Tho' this might just be a 70's parenting thing who knows?
|"Put it in me!"|
It's not all slapheaded stabbing tho' as there's still the matter of convincing sleazy senator Flemming that he's somehow in danger too (possibly) so Alicia using her feminine charms (either that or she hypnotizes him with her massive glasses) to persuade his ex-quarterback (whatever that means) college pal turned bodyguard to meet her 'for drinks' at a political rally cum puppet show cum disco at the local mall.
Which sounds brilliant even if all these killings weren't going on.
Unfortunately Mr Beef had also indulged in a wee bit o' Blue in the past and that coupled with the pint of Babycham he orders caused him to lose his mind (and his hair) and go batshit crazy to a grooving disco score as polyester clad cool people dive for cover.
Will Jerry be able to convince everyone that bad drugs - and not he - did the bad killings or will there be (mass) murder on the dance floor?
Will Flemming manage to hold onto his election?
And will the talented talking budgie turn up to save the day?
From genius Jeff Lieberman, the man behind Squirm, Just Before Dawn and the frankly fantastic Satan's Little Helper comes this psychedelic slice of 70's pill popping paranoia that plays out like an episode of Columbo as scripted by Larry Cohen.
Albeit when he was a wee bit busy and could only manage a rough first draft.
Solidly directed, tightly edited and played with just the right amount of stoic conviction from it's cast, Blue Sunshine may unravel a wee bit toward the climax but the plots sheer delicious deliriousness more than makes up for any hiccups along the way
|Sophie Ellis Bextor: Stolen groove (and clothes) not shown.|
Plus it has the added bonus of being genuinely creepy in parts thanks in no small way to Charles Gross' sinisterly scary score and the casts really big eyes.
Even the featured song Disco Blue by the fantastically named Humane Society For The Preservation Of Good Music is a winner.
And talking of music any film that's good enough for Steve Severin and Robert Smith to name their collaborative album after is good enough for me.
And by default you too.