Friday, May 31, 2019

t-rextacy.


Originally released way back in 1994 on the ragged coattails of Jurassic Park, Tammy and the T-Rex is a bit of a guilty pleasure at Arena Towers - epitomizing as it does everything that was/is utter shit about mid 90s movies.

When I reviewed this originally way back in 2007 I remember saying (well typing but you get the idea) that it would probably fare a wee bit better - and receive a bit more love - if the director had just gone "fuck it!" and made it a gore soaked T-Rex 'n' sex based movie to begin with rather than a poverty row screwball comedy filled with cock jokes and hellish homosexual stereotypes.

So you can imagine my surprise - I'm easily pleased - when it was announced that an R-rated “Gore Cut” had been recently discovered and is getting a world premiere at the Cinepocalypse Genre Fest next month.

Which is OK if you live in the States I guess but not too good for those of us living anywhere else*.

Tho' if anyone would like to pay for me to attend in order to review it I'll be happy to oblige.

If not you'll just have to put up with the very old - and very creaky review from way back.

Don't worry tho' as it's really short, I mean if they couldn't put in the effort why should I?

For those of you reading it for the first time - enjoy, and for those of you re-reading it - I've added a few more "Shite in mah mooth!" captions for you so everyone's a winner.

Except Paul Walker obviously.

And not just because he had to spend the entire shoot encased in a dinosaur suit that the Pertwee era production team would think twice at putting on screen.

Tammy And The T-Rex (1994)
Dir: Stuart Raffil.
Cast: Denise Richards, Paul Walker, George Pilgrim, Ellen Dubin, Sean Whalen, Theo Forsett, Terry Kiser and a big dinosaur.








Fish lipped and shiny haired high school cheerleader Tammy (a pre-Bond - and pre-Botox - Richards) has fallen madly in love with the sensitive yet still manly football jock Michael (a pre-death Walker) and spend her school days gazing adoringly at him from afar.

Unfortunately tho' her mad as a bag of spanners, ex-beau Billy (Pilgrim, best known as the original AJ Chamberlain on CBS's longest running Soap Opera of all time, Guiding Light) is making her life a living hell, stalking her, phoning her and generally being a bad lad who takes particular offense to Michael's apparent interest in Tammy which culminates in a playground scrap where the pair roughly grab each others genitalia to see who will let go first much to the eye-popping amusement of Tammy's black and gay (wasn't it always the way in the 90s?) best friend Byron (Forsett, best known for Street Knight and Street Hawk - poor fucker).

Luckily this only brings the pair together and Michael finally asks her out for a picnic.


As in for sandwiches, crisps and pop 'n' stuff, not just to share a chocolate bar.

Glad that's sorted.

But Billy is lying in wait and upon discovering Michael in Tammy’s room later that evening explodes in a fit of jealous rage and chases poor Michael across town before beating the crap out of him and throwing his unconscious body into the lion enclosure at the local zoo.

Which seems a wee bit over the score if I'm honest.

Fast, furious and fish lipped.


As luck - and plotting - would have it Michael is only slightly (but not quite fatally) mauled and is rushed to hospital under the care of medical mentalist Dr. Wachenstein (TeeVee stalwart and Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood star Kiser giving it 110%) and his 'busty' German assistant Helga (Dubin from Napoleon Dynamite and your dad's bed).

Hearing the terrible news Tammy hurriedly squeezes into her best slut chic outfit and rushes to be at Michael's bedside only to find that Wachenstein - after having a wee fiddle with his bits because he's a bad man - has transplanted Michael's brain into the body of a ferocious T-Rex.

As you would.

Tammy does what any strong independent woman would do in this situation and faints.

As does Byron because he's gay obviously.


But what of poor Michael?

Waking up in his new (tiny handed) body he, quite understandably, goes on a mad killing rampage attacking Billy and his gang at a pool party before squashing the bully underfoot.

Luckily for the crew the 'delicate' animatronics didn't fuse in the water, tho' the fact that the dinosaur can only move it's head ala the Clooney Batman probably means it was a clockwork one.

Either that or a really awful Halloween costume.

There's no time to spend admiring the dino-suit tho' as we're about to strike comedy gold when Helga arrives at the scene and upon surveying the carnage decides to roll the squashed body of Billy up like a carpet.

Oh.

My.

Sides.



"Fiona! Where's mah lunch?"



Realising that most of the subsequent dino attacks are probably going to end up on the cutting room floor director Raffil plows straight into the romance subplot so has Michael kidnap Tammy and take her to a secluded hayloft just out of town.

Tho' how he can pick her up in those itsy bitsy stick thin arms is never revealed.

It doesn't take Tammy long to figure out that the horny lizard rubbing against her leg is her beau and so begins a race against time (and good taste) to find Michael a more 'acceptable' body and one better suited to giving Tammy the love she needs whilst dodging the local sheriff and the mad doctor intent on reclaiming his latest creation.

Seriously you get the idea, can I stop now?


Laugh now!


From the director who gave us Mannequin: On the Move, The Ice Pirates and Mac And Me comes a movie that does for the dinosaur what Cruising did for random night club pick-ups.

Tho' to be fair at least after Cruising your dad decided to stay home a wee bit more at the weekend which probably helped save yer folks marriage.

At least till you left home and he moved out to share a flat with his pal Brian from work.

You remember, the flat you couldn't visit because it only had one bedroom so your dad slept on the couch.

Just me then?

No caption needed.






Anyway back to Tammy and the T-Rex - if I must - which is just like your dad's life choices is a cliche-filled, ultra-shite crapfest of equally baffling and oddly schizophrenic proportions that's neither funny enough or blackly comic enough to be any way successful tho' to it's - very mild - credit it does have some scenes that raise if not a wee chuckle then a little bit of bile at the back of your throat.

Yes, I'm talking about the bit where Tammy sexily strips to her 80s style white Madonna basque and suspenders - complete with white fluffy boa in front of a brain in a jar.

A brain she has just poured a glass of champagne over to 'get it in the mood'.

 which she has just poured a glass of alcohol on top of it.



And maybe, just maybe I'd have to mention the scene with the T-rex watching a funeral from behind a bush and maybe even the 'tender' love moments between Tammy and a large rubber dinosaur which were both vaguely amusing but that's about it seeing as most of the alleged comedy comes from some Chuckle Brothers style pratfalls and the fact that Tammy might be sleeping with a dinosaur, I mean just imagine the films standing if the director had show the balls to give us some foxy Denise on dino' soft focus, MOR scored loving.

Or is that just me that gets excited by that thought?


"Shite in mah huge Jurassic mooth you ape descended bastards!"




Worth it only if you're a crap dinosaur fan or get off at the thought of Denise Richards dressed up like your uncles new mail-order 'girlfriend' at Christmas whilst flirting outrageously with a rubber T-Rex.


Or if you have shit for eyes.










































*Tho' if you lived in Italy on it's original release you've probably seen most of the cut stuff seeing as the deleted scenes were reinstated there.

Monday, May 27, 2019

the price of fear.

Celebrating Vincent Price's birthday with this megamix of deep red disco death cult of sinister samples and bizarro beats:

 

kiss my face.

What better way to relax on a Bank Holiday than with a top quality movie?







Pity then that we decided on this....

KISS Meets The Phantom of The Park (AKA KISS Meets the Phantom, KISS in the Attack of the Phantom. 1978).
Dir: Gordon Hessler.
Cast: Peter Criss, Ace Frehley, Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley (AKA KISS), Anthony Zerbe, Deborah Ryan, Terry Lester, Carmine Caridi, John Dennis Johnsto, Lisa Jane Persky and John Lisbon Wood.

"What do you compute, Space Ace?"
"Insufficient data at the moment, Star-Child!"





Welcome to Magic Mountain, the world's most unpopular and dare I say it, shittiest theme park where the frighteningly plain Melissa (infinitely forgettable TV stalwart Ryan) and her Lego-haired beau - and park employee - Sam (Ark II star Lester) are enjoying a romantic date wandering around the empty stalls and rides whilst holding hands uncomfortably.

It's not all stilted love stuff tho' as the park's business manager Calvin Richards (Caridi from shit loads of stuff) has begun to notice how much cash he's losing so in a fit of pique decides to book the world's (nay the universe's) biggest rock band, KISS to play three nights in the Magic Mountain car park.


This decision doesn't go down well with everyone mind, especially the park's head techie guy, general janitor type and all-around mad scientist, Dr. Abner Devereaux (the creepily craggy cult king Zerbe).

You see Abner is the creator of the parks frighteningly realistic animatronic exhibits (you remember, the ones that are losing them all the cash) and reckons that all the public really need for a good time is a quick look at his stiff, moth-bitten robot monkey jerkily rocking backwards and forwards like Norman Wisdom during his final days and not some spandex clad nonces letting it all hang out whilst wearing their mums shoes.

To prove he knows what he's doing, Abner plans to soup up a few of the parks rides (including the kiddies spinning teacups) with a kinda super-charged energy thing, which would've been a great plan had a group of bad men not decided to sabotage the bumper cars that very day almost killing a group of orphans and blaming the poor doc in the process.

Saying that tho' he may have hired them to do it, I wasn't really concentrating if I'm honest).

Not too surprisingly Calvin sacks him on the spot (but does let him keep the keys to his secret lab hidden below the waltzers, which is nice).


Insert cock here.




Stomping off like a stroppy teenager (or a substitute teacher discovering pics of themselves pissed on t'internet whilst looking up pictures of fluffy bunnies for her class) Devereaux promises himself revenge on the park and it's owners before locking himself away in his lair.

Whilst all this is going on, Mel and Sam are still wandering aimlessly around the park stuffing their faces full of candyfloss and firing airguns at ratty teddy bears.

Suddenly, as if he's just developed some kind of spider-sense, Sam announces that there's 'something wrong in the park.... something I don't understand' (could be anything, dating etiquette, personal grooming, hairstyles that suit a big square face...) and promptly leaves to check 'it' out.

Heading straight to the doc's underground lab Sam accidentally leans on a shelf revealing a secret door leading to an even more secret (and deeper underground) laboratory full of bits of old teevee's, glittery blouses, orthopedic shoes, wooden legs and the like.

What evil plan could Devereaux have up his sleeve?

By a strange (or convenient) stroke of luck, Melissa has been following Sam and she too happens upon the daffy doc's ultra-secret underground lab and is even greeted at the door by Devereaux himself.

Making his excuses and muttering something about brainwashing her date and building evil robotic replicas of KISS the doc sends her on her way. Being a girl she thinks nothing of it and continues her walk no doubt daydreaming about make-up, chocolate and stuff.

Just when you'd given up hope of them ever arriving (or at least checked you were watching the right movie) KISS finally turn up at the park, flying in from the skies and firing lasers from every orifice opening their killer 'set' with the top pop number "Rock and Roll All Night."


 
"KISS my hairy man nipples!"





Watching from afar is Melissa who, after spending a fruitless day looking for her man and forgetting to buy a ticket for the gig has decided that KISS may be able to help her find Sam.

Which makes you wonder why the McCann's never thought of this but heyho.

Unfortunately for her tho' the folk hired as security refuse to let her in (they say it's because she doesn't have a backstage pass but I reckon it's cos her hair looks so shite), just then Gene Simmons raises his head and booms out the words "Star-Child!" in a weird, wibbly wobbly voice, causing Paul Stanley to shoot crimson lasers out of his eyes that penetrate Melissa's mind.

KISS, never ones to desert a damsel in distress take Melissa under their wing (well, glittery capes) and offer to show her their magical talismen (talismen? talismans?....is it really that important?) that give them 'special' powers so reckon that this would be a good time to explain this to the audience.

And what are these powers, pray?

Well Gene (AKA The Demon) has the aforementioned scary voice power and can shoot fire from his mouth, Paul (AKA Star-Child) shoots lasers from his eyes that can read minds, eavesdrop on conversations and blow shit up whilst Ace (AKA Space Ace) can teleport, make bird noises and do handstands (do you have the feeling that they were running out of idea's at this point?) whilst Peter (AKA The Catman) has the ability to be redubbed and appear as a huge black guy daubed make-up and a leotard in longshot.

I'm assuming that these are his actual powers and not the effects of him being way to junked up to do anything other than dribble - and occasionally piss himself - during filming.

Gene explains to Melissa that without this collection of tacky trinkets that they'd become a group of powerless mere mortals with tiny cocks.

Probably.

Leaving the talisman on a shelf near an open window our heroes retire to bed.


Bag o' shite.




Later that evening Devereaux unleashes his secret weapon on the park, a giant robot Gene Simmons intent on smashing up the popcorn stand and abusing (but not in a Gary Glitter way thank heavens) the locals hired as security.

So it comes as no great surprise when the next morning Richards shows up at the bands hotel in a wee bit of a tizz.

Gene, who is busy sunning himself whilst wearing and a long, hooded, silver robe denies all knowledge of the attacks, telling Richards that he was in bed with a cup of cocoa by nine and the rest of the band agree leaving the bizarre question of who it was that really smashed up the park.

Leaving the band to prepare for that nights gig, Richards strikes a deal with the bruised and battered security guys, If they'll let KISS continue with the park shows, he'll let them get revenge on Gene during the after show party.

Could things get any worse for the band?

Well not as bad as it is for the poor sods watching obviously.

Surprisingly the gig goes off without a hitch and after a star-studded show the band retire backstage to entertain Melissa (yup she's still there) with a fantastic acoustic version of "Beth" and enjoy a massive bowl of Opal Fruits.

Little do they know tho' that a brainwashed Sam has been programmed to break into their room and steal the talismen.

The rotter.

Luckily they're protected by a mystical force field, giving KISS enough time to finish scoffing the sweets before giving chase.

After quite a leisurely jog the band break into the park (well, climb over the fence) to entertain the viewers at home with what seems like a six hour slow fight against a variety of robots in a shoddily unconvincing kung-fu style whilst a late seventies wah wah beat plays in the background.

Imagine a junior school version of The Raid that culminates with the good guys stomping on a robot monkey in a scene reminiscent of a high camp version of A Clockwork Orange.

Yup it's that good.

Anyway Devereaux sends Sam (this time armed with a force field nullifying laser gun) back to attempt to steal the talismen again.

Surprisingly this plan actually works leaving KISS (slightly less) powerful (kinda....it doesn't really make sense) and before long they're captured by robots things and locked in a cage where a gloating Devereaux excitedly tells the captive KISS all about his plan for world - well theme park - domination.

A plan that involves replacing the band with robots and giving them hypnotic powers which, when the crowd hears certain (added) lyrics will make everyone go mental and (wait for it) smash all the rides.

Which makes you want to ask, is it really worth it?

No, really.

....And one day we awoke to find that Nigel Farage was in power.






Leaving the talismen on a table next to the cage that KISS are locked in the doc heads off to the concert to oversee his plan as the evil robo-KISS head on stage.

Things don't start off too well tho' as the crowds jeer and boo the new lyrics but as Devereaux powers up his hypno-thing the gathered masses suddenly go silent before getting all jittery and start slashing the seats.

The real KISS, meanwhile, remember the fact that they still have some power even without their gaudy trinkets use psychokinesis to make the talismen spookily fly back in their possession ready to KISS some ass!

Not literally tho'.

Taking to the air with an 'up, up and away!' - helped in part by a fairly small CSO budget -  the band fly to the concert arriving just in time to stop the riot and take down their wicked robot duplicates.

The crowd, thinking it's all part of the show, cheer uncontrollably as eight tubby stuntmen in drag throw each other about by the hair.

Tearing the robots limb from limb before throwing them into the mosh pit, KISS encore with "Rock and Roll All Night" before tracking down Devereaux, who due to the radiation emitted by his hypno-ray has aged over a hundred years and is sitting helplessly in the corner of his lab covered in his own piss.

Some other stuff happens and then it ends.





There was a time (before Bill and Ted revived their fortunes - ask your mum) when KISS were the biggest band in America (over here we had Slade who to be honest could've kicked their arses).

Replacing any determinable musical talent with glittery space persona's and fright make-up the band had already signed to Marvel comics so a movie couldn't be far behind.

Hiring genre veteran Gordon Hessler (director of such classics as Scream and Scream Again, The Oblong Box, Cry of the Banshee and the fantastic The Golden Voyage of Sinbad) may have seemed like a good idea at the time, but on viewing his limp and turgid excuse for 'direction' you can tell his glory days were behind him.

Well either that or he just couldn't be arsed.




Co-produced by Hanna-Barbera (which is really all you need to know) and obviously seen as a way to showcase the band's love of sci-fi (good and bad) this is more panto than pathos with KISS doing little more than standing around whilst obviously ad-libbing most of their dialogue - at least I hope no-one got paid to write this shite - before a team of crap (sorry I mean crack) circus performers take over for the slow fighting scenes and Peter Pan style flying stuff.

Scarily Gene Simmons actually did go on to have an acting career (playing opposite Tom Selleck in the robot riot that is Runaway and as an evil drag queen in Never Too Young to Die) and is now best know for appearing on 'top ten celebrity shaggers' shows sticking his tongue out whilst hinting that he's had your mum.

Which of course is a lie.

It was mine.

Well at least the kids were amused.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Ad nauseam.

Flicking thru' old copies of the UK's number one sci-fi/fantasy/the 'orrah magazine of the seventies, Starburst I came across (quite literally) this fantastically PC ad for projectors.

Who needs VHS (or life drawing skills) eh?

Sunday, May 19, 2019

people you fancy but shouldn't (part 85).

Seeing as it's Eurovision weekend it has to be this years Danish entry, Leonora.

Honestly you cannae beat braces and big trousers.








Saturday, May 18, 2019

kaiju kuts.


 Celebrate the upcoming Godzilla King of The Monsters with nearly 60 minutes of Gojira grooves, Kaiju cuts and massive monster mixes.



Thursday, May 9, 2019

croc-o-shite.

Just won a copy of this from the rather nice Mr Nasty Pasty on Twitter so thought I'd re-watch it as it's one of my fave Tobe Hooper movies.



Don't worry - I'll actually do some work at some point.

Especially if one of you actually hire me.

Eaten Alive (AKA Death Trap, Starlight Slaughter, Horror Hotel, Horror Hotel Massacre. 1977).
Dir: Tobe Hooper.
Cast: Neville Brand, Marilyn Burns, Carolyn Jones, Stuart Whitman, Janus Blythe, Betty Cole, Kyle Richards, Roberta Collins, William Finley, Mel Ferrer and Crystin Sinclaire.
"My name's Buck and I'm rarin' to fuck!"


Welcome to the small US town of Tossburgh (near Texas I'm assuming from the fashions and accents), it might not be much to look at but it has everything a weary traveler will need.

On main street there's the world famous Bad Place Brothel run by Miss Hattie (Morticia Addams herself, Carolyn Jones looking for all the world like a half melted Truman Capote waxwork), a bar cum diner that appears to have only one song on the jukebox and a, um, police station run by Mark Forrest from Invaders of The Lost Gold.

On one of his rare, sober days obviously.

If you need somewhere to relax after a hard days boozing and shagging then the town boasts a fantastic place to stay that's just a few minutes away, the terrific Starlight Motel, located in an incredibly secluded wood just outside town.

Let's be honest tho', the reason it's so secluded is that it's actually in a studio, miles away from any live action shots.

Oh  and it's lit like something from Crossroads.

Run by the enigmatically bowl haired ex-soldier Leslie Judd (Neville Brand, star of Stalag 17 and father of Russell and Jo), the establishment boasts hot and cold running mentalism, flock wallpaper, an old sofa on the porch and a mini petting zoo consisting of a giant crocodile.
Just the place to take the kids.

Or it would be if Judd could go longer than ten minutes without offing somebody.


"Where's me washboard?"

Anyway, on with the plot where good ol' boy Buck Buckley (Sir Robert of Englund) is just about to get his end away with a pink babydoll nightied, bubble permed prostitute by the name of Clara (Death Race 2000's  Collins) on one of his frequent visits to the aforementioned Bad Place Brothel.

So far so seventies fashioned.

It's the poor gals first time tho' and Buck doesn't make it any better by roughly rolling her over and trying to do her up the arse, which as we all know is most definitely second date stuff.

Terrified and helpless Clara begs Buck to stop but our pervy pal is adamant that he wants his full hours worth of fun and tells her as much whilst trying to stick it in her.

Which would probably be a lot easier if he wasn't wearing his trousers and her a big pair of black granny pants.

But hey, that must be how they do things in the south.

Attracting the attention of Miss Hattie, Clara announces that she no longer wants to be a whore, most definitely doesn't fancy a wee bit of anal violation and wishes to return home.

Being a caring, sharing kinda boss, Hattie offers Buck a fantastic two for one deal before kicking poor Clara out into the street.

Jon Pertwee's initial costume choice was quickly vetoed by the producer.

With only some stamps, twenty pence and a hairy mint in her purse poor Clara trudges up the street in the hope of finding somewhere to stay.

Cut to a dimly lit backlot and our failed floozy is soon outside the Starlight Motel and it's oddball owner.

All's going swimmingly (well as swimmingly as a conversation between a bewigged block of wood and a man so over the top he's in orbit can go) until Judd realizes where Carla used to work.

Baring his yellowing teeth he picks the poor girl up off the floor and squeezes her arse before bludgeoning her to death with a scythe and feeding her whole to his croc.

And you thought they spat that bit out.

No sooner has Judd cleaned up the mess that was Clara's bowel than more guests arrive.

Albeit ones driving very slowly for fear of knocking down the cardboard trees.

Please welcome Mr. and Mrs. Des Functional, their daughter Angie and pet dog.

Liza Minelli-wigged Mrs. Functional (Marilyn Burns from TCM) desperately tries to hold on to an air of normality whilst her poppy eyed, crow faced hubbie Des (Finley from Phantom of The Paradise) minces around like a drunk Slinky whilst barking at the dog, much to the amusement (oh alright, total apathetic blankness) of wee Angie (latter day babe Richards).

Don't fret tho' cos it's not long before dad's dead, the dogs been eaten, mom's stripped down to her little white undies and tied to her bed, her mouth duct taped up and poor little Angie is trapped under the house whilst Judd menacingly waves his chopper at her.

Cliff Richard, up the casino, last week.

Judd's underage carnage will have to wait tho' as who should turn up next?

Only Clara's dad, the grumpy Mr. Harvey Wood (no shame Ferrer) and his terrifyingly plain younger daughter Libby (Sinclaire).

Father Harvey, obviously annoyed at how his career has gone after divorcing Audrey Hepburn starts shouting at Judd regarding the motel's wallpaper but before it can escalate into a bit of full on topless old man wrestling Libby calms the situation down.

Unfortunately.

Shuffling back to his car in order to get his luggage (which surprisingly isn't kept in the huge leathery bags under his eyes) Harvey comes across Sheriff Martin (movie icon and walking brewery Whitman) who kindly offers to help in their quest to find Clara.

Insert cock here. Again.
 

Harvey decides to rest up in the motel whilst Libby heads into town with Martin for a slap up meal and heartfelt chinwag at the local bar, giving her a chance to experience Buck's chat up skills and marvel at the frankly perfectly pert arse belonging to his date, the luscious lolita Lynette (the yumsome Blythe from The Hills Have Eyes and one of my first major movie crushes).

This sight is, by far the best reason to watch the movie.

You'd have to. Twice. Maybe three times on a Friday.


Unfortunately with no-one to stop them arguing it's only a matter of time before Judd and Harvey are back at each others throats, Harvey using a clenched fist and Judd his trusty scythe.

Unsurprisingly it's not too long before Harvey's bloodied corpse is chucked into the lake.

Bloody hell, that crocodile's gonna burst at this rate.

with Libby heading back to the motel for a snooze, Buck and Lynette heading over for 'the sex', poor Angie still stuck under the floorboards and mum desperate for a wee it can only be a matter of time before someone (anyone? Please?) discovers how far Judd is willing to go to keep his pet happy.

But who will survive?

And what will be left of them?

Or their careers.

Tramp in mah big green mooth!

With a director and writer hot off the back of an all-time cult classic and an ensemble cast to die for, Eaten Alive should be one of the all time greats of the horror genre.

Unfortunately Hooper didn't so much as drop the ball than not actually have a ball to begin with.

Or any idea of what the fuck to do with the ball if it actually existed.

Unlike the hyper real Texas Chainsaw, which made it's lack of budget, non-actors and home-made sets a unique feature of the film, Eaten Alive seems strangely studio bound looking for all the world like it was shot for peanuts in the late sixties by a particularly ham-fisted Herschell Gordon Lewis wannabe; the plotting is nonsensical, the editing obviously done by a hook-handed child leaving long
















pauses













in the middle of scenes and the scratched, outdated film stock (obviously found in a bin) and lack of continuity between studio and location work gives the impression of two different movies shoddily spliced together.

Unfortunately for us neither of them look any good.

Blythe: Nice, milky thighs you could ski down.


But it's not all bad.

I mean, with a cast as great as this how could it be?

Plus it does feature a tiny monkey.

And William Finley (sporting the greasiest barnet ever committed to celluloid) barking like a dog in a vane attempt to get noticed by David Lynch and rescued from this madness.

Plus Janus Blythe's oft mentioned perfectly sculptured arse and silky smooth thighs.

And it's strangely hypnotic, like a particularly gruesome car crash drawing you in until you find it impossible to turn away, desperate to find out what Hooper will throw at the screen next.

Nowhere near as great as his Classic Lifeforce but still worth a look.

Especially if you suffer from sadomasochistic tendencies.

Or are a twelve year old boy.

Possibly.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

wee burnie.




Released 38 years ago today, it seems as good an excuse as any to revisit.....

The Burning (1981).
Dir: Tony Maylam.
Cast: Brian Matthews, Lou David, Leah Ayres, Brian Backer, Larry Joshua, Jason Alexander, Ned Eisenberg, Carrick Glenn, Carolyn Houlihan, Fisher Stevens, Shelley Bruce, Sarah Chodoff, Bonnie Deroski, Holly Hunter and J.R. McKechnie.


 Don't worry. Tonight's the night that we scare the shit out of Cropsy. Because when he wakes up, when he see it, he's gonna have a heart attack.



It's a normal sunny day at the amusingly monikered Camp Blackfoot (named no doubt in honour of one of top 70's TV comedian Dick Emery's most popular characters); the jocks are baiting the nerds, the camp counsellors are busying themselves having the sex and the kids are getting ready for a jolly old sing-song and a Weiner roast round the fire.

Unfortunately the Weiner that ends up getting roasted belongs to the camps resident caretaker Terry "Cropsy" Cropston as during the night a group of mischievous bad boys sneak into his cabin and place a worm covered skull - wearing candles for eyes - next to his bed with the sole intention of getting the poor bloke to wet himself.

As is the way in '80's horror movies tho' everything goes tits up and Cropsy gets so frightened that he knocks the skull onto his bed setting his eggy bedsheets and - 100 % polyester - Farrah Fawcett nightshirt aflame.

Leaping from his bed the unfortunate fella accidentally knocks over a nearby gas cannister causing the whole cabin to be engulfed by a raging fireball and leaving Cropsy with no alternative but to stumble out of his by now charred abode - in glorious slo-mo obviously I mean that asbestos suit isn't going to pay for itself - and crash headlong into a river.


I don't know who was the more burned, Crospy wearing it or the guy that paid 250 quid for it on Ebay.




Jump forward five years and Cropsy - or Crispy as he should probably be now known - is released from hospital, decked out in a rather fetching flasher mac, big ass sunglasses and fedora to hide his melted visage the first thing he does, which is what anyone in his circumstances would do if I'm honest, is head out to murder a prostitute.

Albiet one that almost chocked at the sight (but not on) his well cooked spring roll looking penis.

So I suppose that that's OK then. 
No caption necessary.

Realising that he's found his true vocation in life our burned-up buddy decides to head off to the nearest summer camp (in this case the far less amusing Camp Stonewater) and armed with a nifty new pair of garden shears extract revenge on any teenagers that cross his path.

Hiding behind a convenient bush it's not long before he comes across the tomboyish Tiger (ex-Annie star Bruce) who is busy searching for a lost baseball in the undergrowth.

Luckily for Tiger her androgynous nature confuses Cropsy and unsure whether to stab or shag her (as if the two were mutually exclusive) hesitates long enough for her to escape.

Tunnel or funnel?

Back at the camp it's business as usual as we're introduced to the teen cast that will be our victims for the next 90 minutes starting with the showering sexy senior Sally (Girls Nite Out star Glenn) who gets to show off her ample arse as the pube-haired friendless geek Alfred (Backer, best known as A. Bartlett Congdon in Santa Barbara) tries to put the willies up her before running away.

Sally's screams - alongside the light glistening on her ample breasts - bring Michelle (St. Elsewhere's Ayres), Karen (former Miss Ohio, Houlihan), Todd (Matthews AKA David Laurent from Santa Barbara, the TV show where all ex-horror stars go to die) and Eddy (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit's Eisenberg) running to the rescue and slap bang into poor Alfred.

Todd, being a nice guy, feeling sorry for Alfred takes the lonely teen in hand (but not alas in the mouth) and has a brotherly chat with him regarding the rights and wrongs of spying on naked teens, even going so far as stopping Sally's boyfriend Paul Michael Glazer (jobbing thesp Joshua) from giving him a kicking.

If only someone had done this for me as a teen things would have turned out so much different.

And probably less messy.


They might look happy now but just wait till the stabbing starts.


Later that night, whilst attempting to get to sleep after a visit from the mysterious Mother Fist and her five alluring daughters, Alfred spots Cropsy crouching in the bushes outside his window, obviously enjoying a post show fag but with Alfred being a pervy loner freak and everything, no-one believes him.

Well would you?

A new day dawns and the kids are all excited by the prospect of a canoe trip 'up river', especially Karen who's decided that a boat ride is just the excuse she needs to finally have some of the sex with Eddy.

Cue 10 minutes of soft focus paddling and holiday report style shots of the sun shimmering on the water as a groovy Rick Wakeman score plays in the background.

Which is quite relaxing if I'm honest.

The director obviously realises tho' that all this well directed caring about the characters stuff is getting in the way of why we're all here so as soon as the merry band settle down for snacks, Karen and Eddy head to the rivers edge for a wee bout of skinny dipping.

Unfortunately - it's probably something to do with the temperature of the water - Karen changes her mind after seeing Eddy's wrinkly and somewhat shrivelled penis and quickly heads back to shore where she discovers that all of her clothes have been strewn about in the woods.

I say all of her clothes but I actually mean just the ones she was wearing, obviously whoever did it hadn't gone to her house, raided her wardrobe then driven/hitch-hiked back and just thrown them everywhere, that would be silly. 

But all this chat is immaterial frankly for as Karen bends down to retrieve her undies Cropsy appears from nowhere and slits her throat.

Paddle in mah pond!



Things go from bad to very annoying via slight inconvenience the next morning when Michelle discovers that not only is Karen missing but that the canoes have been cut adrift and have floated off up the lake.

Luckily Todd, being the handy sensible type organises the group into two parties; one group, including Eddy and Woodstock (Short Circuit star Stevens) who  alongside the bespectacled Marnie and the instantly forgettable Barbara will build a makeshift (tho' not Makepeace and no sign of Dempsey) raft and to go and retrieve the canoes whilst the others stay behind and gather wood.

For what reason is never explained tho' building a Wicker Man probably isn't it.

Alfred meanwhile decides to go exploring.

It's not too long before Eddy and co. spot one of the missing canoes and quickly paddle toward it only to have Cropsy jump out from under a dog blanket and kill them all to death with his shiny shears.

Which was a wee bit unexpected if I'm honest, I mean how lucky was it that they came across that canoe first?

What would have happened if they'd found the others and decided that that was enough?

Or just walked back to camp?

He could've ended up lying there all summer.

He'd probably still be there now.

Back at base camp Michelle is still worrying about Karen.

"Excuse me, I have my womans period".


As night approaches Glazer decides to make his move on Sally but in the ensuing excitement and at the first hint of nipple he cums in his shorts before storming off in a huff under the pretence of 'starting a fire'.

Been there, done that, still own the (eggy) t-shirt.

Whilst he's away concentrating  on a totally different kind of wood Cropsy steps out from behind a tree and sticks his shears into Sally instead.

Weighed down with kindling and all set for a second attempt Glazer returns to the scene and immediately makes amorous advances on his by now stone cold and uncomfortably stiff missis only to find - in a joke that would make Jeremy Beadle - proud that Cropsy is hiding underneath her corpse.

Fearing getting covered in juicy jock jism, Cropsy jumps up and pins Glazer to a tree.

And can you guess who was watching the whole sordid scene unfold from the bushes in the hope of seeing a hint of snatch?

Yup, it's Alfred.

Running back to camp he quickly rouses  Todd (but not in that way) and tells him what just happened.

Minus the bit where Glazer came in his pants obviously, I mean the guys a freak but he's not heartless.

Todd, upset at being woken from a particularly sexy dream thinks Alfred is lying and sternly tells his to fuck off but our geeky pal is so convincing that Todd eventually offers to go with him and take a look, thinking if nothing else he too might get a glimpse or two of fanny before the night's out.

The only gash that Todd gets to see tho' is the one in Glazer's throat and that's only for a second before Cropsy bonks him on the head and gives chase to Alfred in a scene of Benny Hill proportions as our crispy killer desperately attempts to catch Alfred and Todd (now armed with a handy axe) tries in vain to just catch up.


"Blood in mah mooth!"


Back at camp the rest of the teens are excited to see the raft heading back towards them.

So excited in fact that they mistake the pile of bodies scattered clumsily aboard it as their buddies sleeping.

So you can imagine Michelle's surprise as she approaches it only to discover that it is, in fact full of dead bodies.

And a few of them are still intact.

Amidst the panic and out of the trees appears Todd who, obviously bored with trying to save Alfred has decided to go save the cool kids instead.

Rounding everyone up he gets Michelle to head back to the camp and contact the authorities before realising that the film is nearly over and that, if he save Alfred, he'll be the hero.

Thinking this over for a few seconds he heads back into the woods.

Meanwhile, Cropsy is busying himself pinning Alfred to the wall with his shears in the hope of getting picked to decorate the Chelsea Flower Show entrance hall later in the year.

Coming across a deserted mine opening and noticing the faint odour of frightened virgin (which next to tears and petrol must be the sexiest smell imaginable) Todd sneaks in only to get hit by a rusty mine car which, as luck would have it sends him crashing thru' a convenient cardboard wall and straight into Cropsy's lair where the scene is set for a battle to the death.

"Boiled onions!"


Will Michelle contact the cops and rescue the campers?

Will Todd save Alfred?

Will Cropsy appear to die only to return for one last 'shocking' scene?

Will Rick Wakeman ever stage a musical version of the movie?




From the director of Genesis in concert (no, really), first time film producers Bob and Harvey Weinstein and starring the then unknown Jason Alexander and Fisher Stevens (plus a very young Holly Hunter), The Burning should, by rights be utter shite. 

It's a pleasant surprise then just how great a movie it actually is.

Leaving aside it's sturdy - if hardly original - premise, The Burning has a lot going for it; the direction, from the multi-talented (if a wee bit sport obsessed) Tony Maylam, is terrifyingly taunt and surprisingly classy and the cast (not just the ones who actually went on to have careers) are uniformly great, even those in the more throwaway roles give performances that put most of their contemporary slasher buddies to shame.

A special mention goes out to the frankly wonderful Shelley Bruce as Tiger who's pudding bowl haircut and boyish hips did more to confuse a generation of teenage boys than an entire army of Boy George's could.

Which is actually compliment so please no death threats.

Plus name another film that can boast of having an executive in charge of production with a name like Corky Burger working on it?


Cropsy had won the pools but suddenly realised that he'd burnt his coupon.


Add to the mix a stunning score by Britain's favourite Wizard Sir Rick of Wakeman and some startlingly gruesome effects from a top of his game Tom Savini and you know you have something special.

Unfortunately cinema goers at the time didn't realise it and stayed away in droves.

Unlike our crazy oriental cousins who managed to make it the biggest overseas hit of the year in Japan.

There's a lesson to be learned there but I'm fucked if I know what it is. 

 

laugh now.



Sunday, May 5, 2019

blue is the warmest colour.

It's one of those weeks where I'm awaiting will they/wont they? work news so I 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.

Obviously.

I mean come on, it's the bank holiday weekend you've probably been out for the entire time 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.

Meanwhile across town the big-binned wife of potato-faced beat cop (sounds groovy) John O'Malley (Cameron, father of the former British PM) Barbara (Shaw who's probably been in other stuff but I can't be arsed checking) is busy crying/flirting on her neighbours shoulder in regard to her hubbie working late/never being home/loving his parrot more then her etc - plus the fact that since hs hair has been falling out in clumps that she doesn't fancy him much - typical marriage then really.

Suddenly John returns home and just stares blankly at his wife and pal for a few seconds more than necessary.

Spooky.

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.

No, really.

Savile: The Return.
But that, believe it or not is the most embarrassing thing to happen at the party.

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.
Which wouldn't actually be so much of a social faux pas if he didn't then batter one of them to death with a mop handle before throwing one into the open fire and finally punching the last girl standing in the face.
Twice.

Capt. Jack Sparrow: The Bri-Nylon years.
Hearing the screams Jerry hurries back to the party only to come across (not in that way) a blood spattered Frannie legging it into the darkness.
Being our hero for the evening Jerry gives chase and in a fight scene that would do Blakes Seven proud pushes Frannie under an oncoming truck.
Pity that the trucks occupants are very happy with losing their no claims bonus and decide to shoot our hero as he tries to explain what's happened.
Americans eh?
Thinking fuck this for a game of darts, Jerry jumps in a car and drives away desperately trying to think how he's going to explain the whole sorry situation to his gran.
Nutted but still sucking.
Back at the house party cum bloodbath the police are already busy questioning Alicia whilst across town Jerry makes his way to see his old pal Dr Bloom for a sticking plaster and cold coffee enema for his gunshot wound.

See? 
That stuff earlier wasn't just filler.

Probably.
Meeting up with Alicia the next day Jerry is shocked to see a newspaper headline (or he may have just been admiring the pretty lips of the old man reading it) regarding a recent spate of killings involving - wait for it - a bald man.
But not just any bald man.
You see it looks like  John O'Malley may have gone crazy and murdered his family.
And his neighbour.
And his neighbours dog.

Could the headaches and hair loss be related?
Go on, guess.

Leslie Dixon: Still fears the chives.

As is the way with such tales Jerry decides to take it on himself to prove his innocence at to this end breaks into the  O'Malley house to search for clues.

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.

Good day.