Monday, November 28, 2022

mad about apples.

 

Worth a rewatch seeing as it was released in Italy on this very day in 1974, Jorge Grau’s amazing The Living Dead At The Manchester Morgue (aka Let Sleeping Corpses Lie)







Not only is it frankly fantastic but in a bizarre turn it was originally meant to be filmed in my adopted home of Glasgow (Grau was on record saying that the city looked like it had already begun to devour itself, which was nice).

Actually a few years ago I think I found the corresponding locales- petrol station, waterfall, village etc. Around Aberfoyle near Stirling (round about the David Marshall Lodge) but never heard back from Jorge Grau before he died.

Which is kinda sad but at least we can imagine what it would have looked like.

Probably.










Anyway, on with the show.....

Let Sleeping Corpses Lie (AKA The Living Dead at Manchester Morgue, Don't Open the Window, Breakfast at the Manchester Morgue, No profanar el sueño de los muertos 1974).
Dir: Jorge Grau.
Cast: Christina Galbo, Ray Lovelock, Arthur Kennedy, Jeannine Mestre, Jóse Lifante, Fernando Hilbeck, Giorgio Trestini and Isabel Mestres in a pair of sexy spectacles.

"You're all the same the lot of you with you cheap clothes and faggot hair and you hate the police....You make it easy."



Hip 'n' happening antique shop owner cum mustachioed mum magnet George (the always fantastic Lovelock), needing a break from the cut-throat world of cleaning dead mens clocks has planned a well deserved weekend away at a cottage with friends.

Quickly leaving a rainy - and scary stripping housewife filled - Manchester astride his funky moped he soon hits the quiet country lanes of Mummerset where he comes across (you know the drill) the ravishing readhead Edna (dream queen Galbo) when she accidentally runs over his bike at a petrol station.

An (overly if I'm honest) angry George demands a lift to his destination and Edna, being one of those simpering types only found in Eurohorror of a certain age agrees but only if they can go visit her poppy eyed, junkie sister Katie (Mestre latterly starring in the hit TV epic Tornarem) first.

As far as first dates go I've been on worse.

Meanwhile in a nearby field, well meaning - and jaunty hatted - scientists are busy testing a brand new patented radiation emitting device intended to destroy the nervous systems of insects and therefore revolutionize farming.

Unfortunately it also has the fairly surprising effect of bringing the recently dead back to life.

A wee bit like Brexit.

The first to re-animate is local celebrity tramp and (maybe) Benefits Street star Guthrie (the sinister beard wearing Hilbeck) who attacks Edna in her car whilst George is away asking directions.

Fortunately Edna manages to scare him away by brandishing a bar of soap in his general direction before George returns, tho' this has the effect of making our hero think that Edna is a wee bit mental.

Mental and a redhead?

What's not to love?


Bad science at work
outside Manchester earlier today.


Anyway, over at their remote cottage crack fiend Katie is in the middle of a particularly drug-fueled row with her frighteningly ferret faced  photographer husband Martin (Panic star Lifante) regarding Edna's impending arrival.

Obviously he just doesn't like ginger birds.

Fool.

Storming off to a nearby waterfall in order to take some 'pictures' moaning Martin leaves Katie wallowing in a pool of tears and snot on the kitchen floor.

Luckily (for us that is) this scene of domestic drama is rudely interrupted by Guthrie who bursts into the house and tries to bite Katie on the arse.

Which kinda proves that if a dead man can't bear to look at your face you must be in trouble.

Boiled onions!

Running screaming to the waterfall to find her husband, things go from bad to very bad when ghoulish Guthrie kills poor Martin, leaving Katie no alternative but to run all the way back to the house.

Which at least means she'll have sweated all the shite out of her system by the time her sister turns up which can't be a bad thing really.

Falling into her sisters arms Katie tells the newly arrived pair the whole sorry story.

George, being a fairly imagination free type of guy is unimpressed but heads off to check out Katie's story anyway, reasoning that if nothing else he can probably get a few quid for Martin's camera in his shop.

What a guy.

Unfortunately it's a pretty cheap model so instead George pockets the film, probably in the hope of it containing some nude 'readers wives' style shots of Katie.

Well beggars can't be choosers.

Edna meanwhile has phoned the police, which would usually be a sensible thing to do but unfortunately the local law enforcement team is led by the booze soaked bigot Inspector Barry B'stard (Kennedy, giving a scarily accurate portrayal - in hindsight - of self proclaimed 'God's cop' James Anderton follow the link for more info about this frankly terrifying man fact fans) who immediately accuses Katie of murdering her hubbie before criticizing the length of Edna's skirt and calling George a girlie barnetted faggot.

And for these reasons alone B'Stard orders an understandably annoyed George and a teary eyed (yet still hot as fuck) Edna to book into the local hotel whilst he investigates the murder and find/fake evidence of their involvement.

Possibly involving one of them innocuously tying a Suffragette ribbon to a tree.

So not at all like the real police then because there's no way that would ever happen.

A literal act of violence yesterday.



Meanwhile in the middle of all this shouting Katie finally has a total meltdown and is sent to the nearest hospital where, it turns out that all the newborn babies have started biting (well gumming) the nurses.

Could this be in any way related to all this science that's going on?

Arriving in town George, in full James Bond mode, secretly takes the roll of film from Martin's camera to a local chemist to have it developed.

Look, who knows how long he's going to be stuck in his room so he might have well have some fun, I mean given the circumstances it's not like Edna's going to be giving out any time soon.



"Oh beggorah! ya wee tinka! you
touched up dem burds to be sure you did" - Dave Lee Travis is questioned by Eamon Andrews regarding Operation Yewtree.



Rising early next morn to collect the photos, George is upset to find that not only are there no - tasteful - nudes of Katie but also no sign of the man who allegedly killed Martin so George, not one to get turned on by random pics of trees hands them over to B'stard.

Annoyed with the police's patent bastardness and bored with staring at the local duck pond, our hero decides to take matters into his own hands (but not his sexy bearded mouth unfortunately) and persuades Edna to join him on a search for the elusive Guthrie.

Unbeknown to the pair, B'stard has sent one of his officers, PC Craig (Four of the Apocalypse and The Beast star Trestini) Fairbrass, to trail them.

Following a mysterious fishy smell that's been permeating in the air of late, the pair find themselves in the local graveyard where following a noise - and their noses - coming from crypt  they discover Guthrie lunching out on the vicars ample thighs.

If that wasn't scary - and disturbing - enough it seems that the terrifying tramp has acquired the power to reanimate the dead by simply stroking their eyeballs.


He really should audition for Britain's Got Talent.

Trapped by an even increasing undead army (OK, there are three of them but hey, who's counting) George and Edna desperately try to climb out of a convenient hole in the wall as Guthrie and co. slowly (and stinkingly) advance.





You would, I would, your dad probably did. Twice.

 
The pair finally manage to scrabble thru' it and into a freshly dug grave where luckily PC Craig just happens to be standing having a sly fag.

Helping them out of the grave the trio quickly flee, locking themselves in a nearby storeroom but are soon surrounded by Guthrie and his ever growing entourage of recently revived pensioners.

Realising that he's dropped his radio outside - and knowing that a film of this ilk only has room for one facially haired hero, Craig makes a dash to retrieve it but is soon caught by the unwashed undead who make quick work of tearing his chest open and eating his kidneys.

Wiping his chin on Craig's flapping chest Guthrie soon turns his attention back to George and Edna (will he eat her whole or spit that bit out?) but George is now prepared to fight back and launches an oil lamp at him.

Luckily he was sensible enough to light it first and the zombies quickly burst into flames - tho' not, alas song - giving the pair enough time to escape.

Edna, still being the sensible type, heads off to inform the police of all this undead activity whilst George uses Craig's car to head off to the farm to inform the science folk of their machines unfortunate side effects.

It says a lot for George as a stand up heroic type that we're all inclined to believe his leap of logic regarding the cause of the zombie outbreak without even the merest hint of evidence.

Yes he's that super cool.

There is no such thing as a straight man, just guys who've never seen Ray Lovelock.


Arriving at the farm it'll come as no surprise to find that dear old Barley Moe (for it is he) and the two scientists think he's talking bollocks leaving George no alternative but to smash the machinery before quickly driving away whilst giving the chasing trio the vickies out the back window.

What a guy!

Meanwhile back at the main plot B'stard has found (what's left of) Craig alongside a pile of burnt bodies and using his fantastic detective powers deduces that George and Edna are, in fact, devil worshipers before issuing a 'shoot to kill' order on the pair.

The news that George has deliberately wrecked a piece of government property only adds to his annoyance.

Whilst all this slightly fascistic posturing is going on Edna has decided to head back to Katie's house first in order to reapply her make-up or something (look she's a girl and therefore impossible to understand) but her preening is cut short by the surprise arrival of her undead brother-in-law.

Luckily he's as useless in death as he is in life and is soon dispatched by Edna who nonchalantly runs him over.

It's almost as if she hasn't realised that it's her bad driving that started this whole mess.

Reunited with George (who manages to persuade her to let him drive) the pair go to the local garage with the sole intention of staring at the spooky disabled child that works there.

Oh yes and to buy a huge can of petrol so that George, confused as to what else he can do, can set fire to some stuff.

Magnificent as this plan is, it's cut short when George is caught by the police who were on their way back from picking up Martin's body.


Inspector B'stard standing proud as a freshly sucked cock watches with almost unbridled glee as George is bundled into the back of a van and Edna is whisked away to hospital.

Whilst all this Sweeney-esque behaviour is going on Tony and Dean Scientist are busying themselves repairing their machine in order to kill even more bugs.

Oh yes and reanimate even more corpses, the majority of which are stored in the (non Manchester based) morgue at the nearby hospital.

The same hospital where Edna is being taken.

Will George escape from police custody and save Edna?

Will Inspector B'stard get bored hounding our hero and turn his attentions to immigrants and Gypsies?

Will Euro-hottie Isabel Mestres turn up in an ill fitting pair of bottle-top NHS specs before getting her ample breasts eaten?

And more importantly how will they explain all this to my nan?



Is it wrong to find this poster arousing?



Fright permed Spanish shock-meister Jorge Grau's magnificent take on the zombie genre is frankly a delight to behold and those expecting a trashy exploitative Eurohorror will be in for a surprise as Corpses is a well crafted, well acted and at times well terrifying shocker.

From it's wildly experimental synth score (courtesy of Giuliano Sorgini - who also scored The Beast In Heat showing that no-one's perfect) and pitch-perfect performances via Grau's skewered outsiders view of 70's Britain; scenes of George leaving a grey and grimy rain swept Manchester - encountering traffic jams, bored commuters and an unattractive streaker on the way - thru' to the eerie desolate Lake district shot woodland scenes, give the film an almost dreamlike - nay nightmarish - quality and an overriding sense of foreboding and doom that seeps thru' every shot.





Gory Guthrie discovers that the
UK doesn't have any blood banks....



Grau isn't afraid to give the film a slow, almost leisurely build up either, taking time to introduce us to the characters whilst his fluid direction keeps your attention on the unfolding story, even if it at times falters as far as logic is concerned.

A prime example of this is the nature of the zombies which can't be photographed giving them an almost supernatural, not man made presence during the films first half as does the almost magical way that Guthrie can transform other corpses just by touch which is at odds with the 'scientific' reason given for the outbreak later.




....but it does have a Liverpool!


None of that matters tho' as the films second half picks up a frantic pace, the undead vs. the living plot line revs up a notch and the movies horror factor intensifies as first the recently deceased then new born babies become affected by the radiation. 
Corpses builds to a surprising climax and suitably downbeat ending and all praise to Grau for taking this route.

It's CCCHHHHRRRIIISSSTTTMMMAAASSSS!


It's sad that in his 40 plus years as a film-maker, Jorge Grau only ever directed two films in the horror genre but luckily the other is the quite fantastic Elizabeth Bathory based Legend of Blood Castle (available from Mya Communications - or it was - if anyone's interested).

Released in 1972 and featuring the to die for Lucia Bosé as the infamous Countess, Bloody Castle is well worth searching out if you fancy an evening of blood, sex and scares that doesn't involve your mum.

Plus it makes a great double bill with Mark of The Devil which features a nice bit of Udo Kier for the ladies.

Movie dates a good 'un then.

Thank me later.

Or at least invite me to the wedding.


Lucia Bosé: No amusing captions just sheer lust (for a vampire obviously).



You have to wonder tho' what other horrific delights Grau could have brought to the screen had his career taken a different path.

An essential for any self respecting film fan or anyone with eyes.

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

time and relative dimension in sound.

 Celebrating 59 years of Doctor Who with these masterful mixes of Mondasian music, Cyber sounds and Bok beats!

 

Friday, November 18, 2022

having a butchers.


 

Ended up watching this (again) last night.

You see my train was over an hour late so I stumbled home in a daze and needed something to help me relax and realising it was Ian McCulloch's birthday today I thought a wee bit of grumpy Scottish man-love was in order plus we'd recently rewatched Zombie Flesh Eaters and remembered that after filming they'd left McCulloch behind on the island with no cash to get home but luckily Marino Girolami was staying at the same hotel so Ian persauded him to make a movie using the left over sets and employing him as the lead.

True story bro.

As the kids say.

Zombi Holocaust (AKA: Doctor Butcher M.D: Medical Deviate, Island of the Last Zombies, Queen of the Cannibals, La Regina dei cannibali, Zombie Holocaust, 1979).
Director: Marino Girolami (or if you prefer, Frank Martin).
Cast: Ian (the kids school fees are how much?!!?) McCulloch, Sherry Buchanan, Alexandra Delli Colli, Peter O'Neil, Dakar and Donald O'Brian.


"You nearly succeeded in ruining my life's work! I could easily kill you now. But I'm determined to have your brain!"





In a rain sodden (and badly lit) teaching hospital deep in the heart of New York City - the home from home for 80's lo-fi Italian movie makers, well at least for their films openings in order to convince folk that they're watching an American production - someone has been helping themselves to various body parts belonging to the cadavers marked for use in the daily anatomy class, much to the chagrin of the grumpy surgeon who uses the incidents as an excuse to shout "You've all failed!" at his students before fucking off down the pub.

Possibly.

"Fuck me! A wasp!"




The gorgeously glamorous (in an Kay's catalogue way) Lori Ridgway (the frighteningly fish lipped Delli Colli) and her colleagues are baffled by this spate of icky thefts and reckon that the answer must be prank playing students.

But lo, the truth is far more sinister - and it has to be said, oh so slightly racist - when they discover the token, bowl haired Asian doctor (who looks disturbingly like a porn movie version of Erik Estrada) is caught sitting in the dark eating a corpses heart.

Spooky.

Erik decides the best course of action is to evade capture by throwing himself out of a window then cunningly turning into a shop window mannequin before he hits the ground.
 
With a satisfying plastic echo it has to be said.
 

Noel Edmonds discovers his hand twin.




After a leisurely trip to street level in the lift Ridgway bags the body and returns to work to start her examination.


Of the corpse that is, she's not taking her driving test or anything.


And it's whilst examining the aforementioned corpse, that Ridgway — who also happens to be a student of anthropology, lucky that - recognizes a strange (for strange re: shite) tattoo on the dead man's chest.

A tattoo that just happens to be (are you paying attention?) exactly the same as a symbol found on a ceremonial dagger she was given on her sixth birthday by the family housemaid when she lived on the tropical island of Kitkatoo.


Which by a strange coincidence is also where the heart eating doc was from.

Phew!

And if that wasn't plot contrivance enough it turns out that the dagger has recently been stolen!

I mean what are the chances of that?



"This outbreak of cannibalism could
be related to the killing moon".





Feeling there's more to this than just an isolated incident, Lori decides to ask famous scientific 'investigator' and generally suave stud muffin Dr. Peter Chandler (genre god and owner of the worlds best ginger comb-over McCulloch) for help in solving the macabre mystery.

After much ooing and aahing, Chandler reckons the best way to get to the bottom of things is to organize an all expenses paid holiday, sorry expedition, to the island alongside a crack team of experts - and by experts I mean Lori, her assistant George (the credits say Peter O'Neal but I swear it's a pre-Dead Ringers Jon Culshaw) and tough tomboy reporter Susan (the lank haired, boy trousered but infinitely bonkable Buchanan from Starcrash II and Tentacoli).

Non-entities one and all but infinitely more charismatic than anyone featured on I'm A Celebrity or Love Island.
 
Mooooosssshhhhiiiiiiiii!!!!






Deciding to visit the big island next to Kitkatoo (Dogpoochone?) first our fantastic foursome spend a few days staying with the trampish Dr. Jeff Obrero (screen legend O'Brian, looking like Wilfrid Brambell's buffer brother), a piss stained and poo breathed gone to seed medical researcher with a great line in open neck shirts and too tight trousers who's been living among the natives for years.


Well in their bins by the look of him.





"Aye son!"





Although stinky as hell, Obero still has some manners and after tea, cakes and a severed head (tho' it may have been a moldy potato) in Laura's bed he offers not only the use of his boat but a trio of Beatle haired native bearers and his big cravated 'man friend' Terry Moloto (Dakar, essaying his role in Zombie Flesh Eaters but in a cheaper outfit), as their guide.

As is the way in such movies tho', nothing goes according to plan.

The boats engine overheats stranding the group not on the isle of Kitkatoo but on the smaller, slightly less dangerous and more like a playpark behind the director's house island of Kitkatoow...or so Moloto claims.


"Look at the dog!"





Chandler however is beginning to suspect that Moloto isn't being entirely honest about the situation but as he goes to confront the guide a loin-clothed band of scary cannibals jump out of the bushes and attack our heroes.

The native bearers are the first to fall (but isn't that always the way?) giving Chandler and co. time to leg it into the trees.

Contacting Dr. Obrero, the survivors are told to make their way to a handy abandoned church further inland and to lock themselves in whilst awaiting rescue.

Bunnet.






As Chandler and his merry (if slightly smaller than earlier) band make their way through the jungle - well, the producers garden - they seem surprised to find that the cannibals have been following them so react the way anyone would in that situation by standing around screaming as they wait for them to attack again.

After a particularly threadbare and school playground like struggle George ends up eyeless whilst slinky Susan (being the most attractive woman in the movie) is carried away by the arse bearing natives.

Suddenly (almost as if the director has remembered the films title) a gaggle of shuffling zombies turn up and scare the natives to buggery (not literally mind) and the survivors make it to the church - on time - to find Obrero waiting for them.



"Put it in me!"






Convincing the survivors that Susan is probably actually enjoying the attentions of the sausage fingered cannibals and that they should just forget about her, he hands Lori and Chandler a map showing the quickest way to New York and points them in the direction of a handy rubber dingy left on the beach and even tho' Chandler's suspicions of foul play are getting stronger by the second he decides that it probably would be safer to just head home and forget about everything.


Plus he realizes that it'll just be him and Lori in the dingy for weeks...the dirty wee dog.


His sinful thoughts of hot sea-based sex are interrupted tho when a zombie attacks them on the beach, leaving an angry (and no doubt sexually frustrated) Chandler to dispatch it with a handy outboard motor.

With a look of grim determination usually only seen in Sheepdogs our hero slowly realizes that the only way he's ever gonna pull Lori is to solve the island mystery so with a heavy heart – and a raging horn - Chandler heads back to the church to confront the mad doctor......











Available with - and in - more cuts than Richie Manic, Marino Girolami's cult classic is probably the only Italian gore-arama to feature not only cannibals but also zombies and a mad as a lorry doctor too, so you effectively get three movies for the price of one.

It's just a pity that none of them are any good.

On the plus side, Ian McCulloch is in it and as we all know he would never appear in anything too shady, so it's a pity that he's utterly wasted - as in they do bugger all with him, not that he's pissed - standing around in a selection of hand me down safari suits looking worriedly ginger (or is that gingerly worried) for most of the running time.

 But let's be honest, he could stand around in his undies painting a wall and he'd still be infinitely watchable.


McCulloch: Ginger.




Donald O'Brian on the other hand is the complete antitheses of McCulloch's subtle acting style, a perfect example of an eye rolling, scenery chewing and wee stained madman. His fantastically realized Dr. Obrero is an utter joy, so convincing is his performance that you can almost taste his fishy breath.

Tho' luckily not his cheesy Doritos.

Of the other cast members, the plump mouthed star of Fulci's New York Ripper Alexandra Delli Colli is only there to look good in her cream suspenders whilst pouting, her most difficult acting scene being when she's required to look vaguely scared whilst a group of Filipino tramps smear her naked body in face paint and strap her to a big paper mache wheel.

Tho' Mrs Unwell was convinced it was a rape table and that the natives diddled her (off screen).

I disagreed tho', reckoning that if there was any diddling to be done it would be up there on film in all it's glory.

Actually the discussion got rather heated and I ended up in the shed writing this on my phone.

The thing we did actually agree on tho' was the fact that Delli Colli managed all this table-based business with great aplomb and should be very proud of herself.

As should Sherry Buchanan, who comes across as a dirtier (but less mental and with more teeth) Margot Kidder, wearing her dads clothes and with hair that hasn't seen shampoo for about six months she still manages to exude an air of clumsy back alley sexual hi-jinks.

Even - well especially if I'm honest - when strapped to a table after being scalped which would be a tall order for most actresses.

The rest of the cast are kinda just there really, which is enough I guess.




Buchanan: Just wait till the shampooing starts.





As for the cannibal tribe, well it's the first time I've ever seen scary natives dressed only in thongs fashioned from rashers of bacon and mop top wigs but who's to say this isn't a realistic depiction of an ancient civilization?

Not me that's for sure.

Now to the zombies hordes (well I say hordes but there are only five of them, one of which is the directors mum) who, with make up that is a triumph for the seven year old hired to produce it using only the contents of the class arts and craft cupboard and accompanied at all times by a synth score that consists mainly of samples of a small boy farting whilst a dog with throat cancer barks backwards these undead terrors are guaranteed to strike mild apathy into the hearts of even the most hardened viewers.

Plus it's nice to see what the sets from Zombie Flesh Eaters would look like if shot by a myopic, hook-handed child.

Essential viewing.



















Tuesday, November 15, 2022

buio vista sociopath club.

Been thinking a lot about this film of late - I even had a dream about it t'other night but with Prince Andrew replacing Kieren Canter and Sarah Ferguson essaying the role of Jan.

Which I think probably say more about me than anything else.



Buio Omega: Beyond the Darkness (AKA Blue Holocaust , The Final Darkness. 1979).
Dir: Joe D'Amato.
Cast: Kieren Canter, Cinzia Monreale, Franca Stoppi, Anna Cardini, Lucia D'Elia and Sam Modesto.


"All right little boy, no one will touch your baby doll".


Welcome one and all to the sad, mad and thoroughly bad world of the slightly intense and incredibly lonely freak boy Frank Willer (Eroticoblues flaxen haired Canter) who  since the recent and not to mention mysterious death of his beautiful partner Anna (the lovely Monreale from The Beyond who bizarrely enough owns a piece of my artwork - small world) spends most of his days skulking around his huge villa with only his frightening taste in late seventies fashions, a pair of patent leather Kickers and his Mrs. Doyle-like, potato headed and onion odoured housekeeper Iris (stern faced Stoppi, star of Emanuelle fuga dall'inferno, The Other Hell and the underrated Bestiality among other things to gruesome too mention here) for company.

Being too rich (and too wet) to work Frank spends most of his - non whining - time either attempting to perfect his hobby (which is taxidermy, this may become important later) or suckling on Iris's left breast as she strokes his hair and calls him "Her little Frank".

Just like your mum does when you go to visit.

Stoppi: A mooth made for shite-in in.


If you think that's a wee bit strange - or even a little arousing - I wont judge - just wait till Anna's funeral, when just before the ceremony Frankie boy sneaks into the funeral home and quietly injects her corpse with an embalming liquid, either because he's having the service on the cheap or that he has other plans for his dead missis.

Which do you think?

Unbeknown to Frank, Mr. Kale (flash in the pan/cum in my pants Modesto) the friendly neighbourhood funeral director sees the whole thing.

Gah.

Obviously not wanting to spoil the funeral he keeps quiet and heads off home for a drink or three which allows Frank to sneak (he does a lot off that during the film) back that very night and exhume Anna's still fresh, yet slightly stiff body, bundle it into the back of his Ford Transit and head home.

But you know what they say about best laid plans and all that, 'cos the journey is a disaster of Last of The Summer Wine comedic proportions with Frank first having to endure a flat tire followed by a run in with the police before finally coming across an obscenely permed and squint eyed 'cock-er-nee' (the dubbing director must have been either very drunk or very bored) food obsessed hitchhiker named Jan (D'Elia) who won't take no for answer.

Or by the state of her that bag of chips away from her mouth.

Falling asleep in the van after one too many pasties, Jan is oblivious when Frank  drags Anna's corpse into the basement and then slicing her open from boob to bush to remove her vitals before finally sucking her brain thru' a tube up her nose.

Which is fairly lucky really because no doubt that greedy bitch Jan would've probably tried to scoff it all.

His luck can't last tho' and just as he's popping Anna's glass eyes into her exquisite skull Jan stumbles into the basement - obviously drawn by the smell of fresh offal - to find Frank covered in blood, sweat, shit and shame whilst bending over the corpse.

Jan screams but as she turns to run the friction of her thighs rubbing together causes a bucket of intestines to fall on her, giving Frank enough time to beat her to death with a rolled up copy of Stuffed Bird Monthly.

Which is better than she deserved if I'm honest.

Which I am.

Always.

Tony Adams and Katya Jones Strictly Come Dancing routine failed to impress a stern-faced Shirley Ballas yesterday. 



Iris, no doubt at a loose end after polishing off the china (and Frank) is soon on the scene to help tidy up the mess before helping Frank to carry Anne to the bedroom, dressing her in a lovely nylon nightie and painting her finger and toe nails a luscious deep red colour.

Which actually improves her look no end, complementing as it does her massive blotchy chin.

As a new day dawns Frank sets about his daily routine as if nothing untoward had happened.

Which is probably a good thing seeing as her has an urgent appointment with  Mr. Kale who wants his baboon stuffing.

But Kale has other things on his mind.

And it's not discovering the secret of how baboons manage to keep their arses so red and peachy.

You see it seems that word has gotten out that someone stole Anna's corpse and Kale suspects Frank of the crime and in a sneaky plan that Columbo would be proud of arranges for a mutual friend to discuss the project whilst he sneaks into Frank's basement.

Alas Kale doesn't come across any corpses - he's probably still spent from doing that at work on slow days -  but does find a necklace belonging to Anna.
Spookily it was the one she was buried in.

Tho' Kale ignores this fact and goes home.

No doubt to search T'internet for ape porn.

He must have really loved that baboon.

Boiled onions!


We've no time for monkey sex tho' (which is unusual for D'Amato) because Frank still has a body to get rid of.

Waiting till nightfall (and till his loyal housekeeper has done the dishes) he gets Iris to pop Jan's body in the bathtub - don't worry, it's a bloody big bath - and cover it in acid before pulping the remaining lumpy bits with a hammer.

The sight of Iris taking such pleasure from her work (well it's either that or the smell from her breath) is enough to make Frank vomit but luckily Iris is more than willing to 'take him in hand' and make it all better.

Which in case you found that too subtle means she gives him a handjob whilst pulling a face like your nan when she wins at bingo.

Cardini: your dad did. Twice.

The next day Frank understandably decides to go driving to help clear his head.

And hopefully get rid of the memory - and smell - of Iris' beefy fingers.

It's not long tho' (it is a fairly short movie) before his mind is completely cleared of all things murder and old lady sex related thanks to the sight of an ample arsed, poodle haired jogger sitting at the side of the road suggestively rubbing her swollen ankle and Frank, being the gentlemanly type immediately offers to take her up the villa for a thorough bandaging.

The woman (Cardini coming across like a slightly saucier version of top 70's teevee star Susan Stranks and one of the few actresses to get a 4 out of 5 'nice feet' rating on Wikifeet) obviously attracted to Bri-Nylon leisure wear, accepts his offer.

No sooner have they arrived at Frank's pad than the pair of them are kissing, cuddling and engaging in general fondling on the sofa and Frank, happy to be finally pulling someone fairly attractive (as opposed to dead old or just dead) drags his new lady friend off to the bedroom for a quick shag.

You remember the bedroom don't you?

You know the one where he keeps his dead wife.

Everything is going swimmingly till Frank decides, just at the moment of entry, pulls down the bedsheets revealing Anna's corpse.

The juicy jogger turns her head and upon seeing this completely different kind of stiffie leering over her begins to scream.

Frank has no choice but to kill her.

And stupidly before he's even climaxed.

Luckily Iris is on hand to (eventually) clean up both messes.

"Sssssh! You'll wake me mam!" - That's you losing your virginity that is.


Obviously jealous at the thought of Frank shagging someone his own age (and someone who's breathing) Iris decides that the best course of action would be to get rid of Anna's body and persuade Frank to marry her, promising him a lifetime of vinegary hand-jobs and leek soup.

Frank not too surprisingly isn't too keen on getting rid of Anna but scarily agrees to marry Iris (the sick fuck) and even offers to make her the mistress of the estate.

If it were me I'd rather carry on shagging the corpse.

Any corpse.

Even your nan's.

Again.

Desperate to keep her hands (and black toothed mouth) on Franks manhood she begrudgingly agrees, promising to look after both Frank and his 'baby doll'.

I've already done a 'mooth shite' caption.....damn.

After excitedly buying a new dress and washing her bun Iris invites her family over to dinner in order to celebrate her engagement to Frank but things get off to a sticky start when the groom to be storms off in a huff, locking himself in his bedroom with Anna, professing his undying love for her whilst gently stroking her golden hair.

Which is kinda sweet if I'm honest.

Annoyed at her fiancés no show, Iris storms upstairs in an attempt to finally persuade Frank to get rid of Anna causing our hero to finally see the error of his ways.

By that I mean agreeing to shag a pensioner, not sharing a bed with a corpse obviously.

As the argument becomes more heated Frank realises that punching Iris in the face whilst calling her a dirty old whore isn't really going to help matters and the pair decide to call it a day.

Well Frank decides to call it a day, Iris on the other hand has gone totally fruitloops and she's decided to call it a strawberry.

Whilst all this shouty stuff's been going on, Mr. Kale (remember him?) has been keeping his beedy eye (as opposed to the weeping squint one) on Frank and all the creepy goings on at the villa.

Between perving over primates obviously.

But just when Frank (and the audience) don't think the situation can get any worse (or convoluted), who should turn up but Anna's never before mentioned twin sister Elena (Monreale again) in order to pay her respects to Frank.

She was obviously too busy getting her nails done to attend the funeral.

In reality she's only turned up to give the director an excuse to send everyone off the deep end and into the murky waters of mentalism in preparation for a blood soaked climax.

So will Frank come to his senses and end up marrying Elena?

Will Iris ever wash?

And more importantly will Kale ever get his hands on that stuffed baboon?

Answers to the usual email address.




The late 70’s to mid 80’s was a prolific time for the European horror genre and is seen by many as the career high point for such directors as Lucio Fulci, Dario Argento, Luigi Cozzi and Umberto Lenzi, their work constantly pushing back the boundaries of cinema with increasingly bizarre plots and simply lashings of gore in such masterpieces as Zombie Flesh Eaters, Tenebrae, Contamination*, The Beyond and Cannibal Ferox.

But the genres most underrated (and under appreciated) director must be the late great Aristide Massaccesi  (AKA Joe D'Amato, the man I share my birthday with).

Best known as a soft core porn director, he also contributed to the Euro-horror genre with such ‘classics’ as Anthropophagus: The Beast (starring Mia’s one eyed, ex cab driver sister Tisa Farrow) before wowing audiences worldwide with his fantastic forays into goreporn Erotic Nights of The Living Dead, Emmanuelle and The Last Cannibals (both starring dusky eyed beauty Laura Gemser) and  the subtly titled Porno Holocaust.

But perhaps his most accessible (and definitely least sordid) work is the wonderful Buio Omega: Beyond The Darkness.

 
Prince Andrew - Prince Albert not shown.





With it's genius examples of Eurocentric 'panto acting, surrealist dubbing coupled with scenes of uncompromising violence and cheap gore the film stands up as D'Amato's most accomplished movie.

For one thing it has a vague semblance of a plot (usually his movies go: opening titles, shagging, murder, shagging, talky bit, shagging, misplaced 70's synth score, murder, end credits), a particularly strong lead performance from Kieren Canter (the only one he ever gave if I'm honest), a fantastically evocative score from Goblin, adequate - tho' barely - special effects and some even genuinely creepy moments.

Tho' it must be said that the best of these are when Iris attempts sexiness.

Gah indeed.


Insert amusing caption here, unlike the 7th in line to the throne who'd probably just insert his engorged member. Violently.

 

But just imagine tho' how much greater still it could've been in the hands of a more capable director (the bloke who directed Lords of Salem perhaps or Eli Roth?)**.

I'm sure there's a really bizarre alternate film universe where this is seen as a definitive Eurohorror classic, a kind of Italian Psycho or Peeping Tom. 

As it stands we have a sometimes tense, slightly vile but entertaining movie with a heart as black as Iris' tightly curled pubes. 

And for once D'Amato resisted using actors with porn mustaches, frightful chest wigs and a bad case of genital warts, for which we can all be thankful.































*OK maybe not Contamination. 


**For my American readers this is what we call irony.

Monday, November 14, 2022

little big planet.

Someone was talking about this on 'The Twitter' last night so thought I'd give it a re-watch.


The Sinful Dwarf (1973)
Dir: Vidal Raski.
Cast: Torben Bille, Tony Eades, Anne Sparrow, Clara Keller, Werner Hedman and a load of other folk that frankly it's not worth listing. I mean they don't have this on their CVs so why should I make the effort?

Hvad var den mystiske dværgs perverse hemmelighed?



It's a hot summers day (by the fashions on show the temperature must be in the 70s) and a pig-tailed - and let's be honest slightly pig-nosed - young girl is happily playing hopscotch in a quiet street, not a care in the world and a warm smile on her freckled face.

Rounding a corner she comes across a strange little man (the late great Bille who at the time was Denmark's only profession dwarf actor) leading a yapping toy dog, Intrigued she bends down to pet it.

The toy dog that is not the dwarf.

"Hello pretty lady, I'm Olaf!" grins the dwarf in a friendly manner "Do you like my toy? I have many more upstairs in my house!" and with that he takes her by the hand and leads her to the run down boarding house he manages with his mother.

The girl is amazed at the amount of wonderful (re: creepy) toys spread out before her and turns to congratulate Olaf on his collection but as she does the evil little fella bonks her on the head with his walking stick.


We've all been there.

"Grine nu!"


Cue frighteningly 70s titles and compulsory inappropriate theme tune (more on these later) and we're on with the plot good and proper, being quickly introduced to a pair of down on their luck lovebirds; the flasher-macked 'writer' Peter (Eades, bizarrely enough last seen in the Danish/Indian musical drama The Melody of Love alongside Pavel Kadochnikov's granddaughter Nina Bergman - beat that Kermode) and posh tottie Mary (Sparrow, mother of Jack the famous pirate) who arrive at the boarding house looking for a place to stay.

Greeted at the door - as opposed to in the mooth - by Olaf's even freakier (if that were possible, which it is obviously or that last sentence wouldn't make sense) mother, the show tune singing, gin soaked, piss smelling lush that is Ms. Lila Lash (the genius that is Keller in her only film role outside your dad's home movies) the couple are quickly shown to their room - which is a bargain at 6 quid a week by the way.


Excited at the thought of finally getting to sleep in a real bed - rather than under a bush - neither of them notice Ms. Lash licking her (hair) lip and eying up Mary's ample arse (with her none milky eye) as the enter the room.

You see it turns out that behind the Fawlty Towers-esque facade, Olaf and his mentalist mum are kidnapping nubile young girls and running a white slavery sex ring out the attic.


And a secret lemonade mine in the cellar.


But to be honest judging by the reactions of those poor half dressed (and half cut) girls they have chained up this may all be normal in Denmark.


Answers to the normal email address.


"Er det en blyant i lommen eller har du en massiv erektion?"



Olaf's main job (apart from luring the girls to the house and using a Curly Wurly bar as a ladder when he's cleaning the TV obviously) appears to be injecting pure heroin into the victims buttocks whilst screaming “I’m coming girls! I’m coming” with a huge dribbling grin on his face.

Whilst all this drugging and shagging is going on, Olaf's mother amuses herself by staggering about with a bowl of plastic fruit on her head pretending to be Carmen Miranda.

To be honest this is one of the few films that has ever made me miss living with my parents.

"Shite i måneden fæstet!"

 

Obviously the director reckoned that all this just wasn't scary enough and in a masterstroke introduces us to a fish-lipped piss stained drugs dealer named Santa Claus (former cinematographer and production manager Hedman) who delivers the drugs inside stuffed animals.


And this, dear readers, is why folk voted Brexit.


Peter and Mary tho' are oblivious to all this, being too busy thrusting and wriggling on top of each other in a very energetic manner to notice the sounds of sobbing and smell of vinegar and shame emanating from the attic.

And when Peter gets himself a job leaving Mary home alone with Olaf and Lila
little does she suspect that she is next on their list of tanked up tottie to be sold into slavery....



As far as short arsed cinema classics go, The Sinful Dwarf is up there (but not too high obviously) with the best.

One of the strangest (and undoubtedly one of the sleaziest) of a small sub-genre of deadly dwarf movies this UK/Danish (with possible US backing too I've heard) co-production feels like a weird hybrid of slasher movie, exploitation cheapie, European arthouse and dodgy porn film that's been forced into a rusty old sausage maker, minced and squeezed out onto a filthy, chipped plate before being served up by a club-footed hook-handed harlot with bad breath and knees like cheese filled condoms.


From it's shocking, head bashing opening thru it's unsettling titles (consisting, as they do of close-ups of wind up toys tottering around gaudy lettering as Danish avant garde composer Ole Ørsted mixes the sound of a troupe of clockwork monkeys banging drums and smashing cymbals with a bass guitar *), The Sinful Dwarf delivers shocks and sleaze by the (scuzzy) bucketful, leaving the audience in need of a good bath and a gallon of mouthwash.

Honestly, it's THAT good a movie.



"Is it in yet?"

And what of the ‘sinful' dwarf himself?

Sporting a greasy moptop, a huge tombstone grin and (very) kissy lips, Torben Bille is truly magnificent.

Hobbling around and lusting over anything with breasts, his 'unique' lisping delivering of his English dialogue is a masterclass in villainy, coming across like the bastard son of Don Estelle and Jimmy Krankie on crack, trapped in an endless summer season review in Torquay.

Plus when you realize that he and Anne Sparrow were actually a couple during filming the whole scummy, spanked arseness of the proceedings take on an even more sleazy - and slightly more erotic if I'm honest - turn.

Full of 'wah wah' guitars and close-ups of sagging, old men arses thrusting up and down on drugged up, dirt covered girls this is one of those rare films that genuinely does have something for everyone and not even hatchet man Vidal Raski’s lacklustre direction can ruin it.

Essential viewing for the whole family.

But especially your Uncle Peter.








*And you can hear it here:


 

Sunday, November 6, 2022

byers rode....

 Can't believe that it's 39 years today since Will Byers went missing.....Remember the day with 60 (very) odd minutes of strange sounds from the upside down:

 

 

Friday, November 4, 2022

film-tastic.

Starting November with eleven incredible movie facts:
 
Did you know that the shark in Jaws is not actually real?
 
Rin Tin Tin wasn't actually made out of tin. It was a copper alloy.
 
The Lego Movie was entirely computer generated, Lego cannot move on it's own.
 
No stars have ever been at war.
 
Jack was intended to survive at the end of Titanic, where he and Rose would go on to live full lives and start a business that would later become IKEA, just like in real life. However, Dicaprio became bored by filming the floating door scene, and allowed himself to drown for real. All scenes still to shoot requiring Dicaprio were later filmed with a mix of CGI and Timothy Olyphant acting as a stand-in.
 
Sandra Bullock isn't actually a bullock.
 
Or a Sandra.
 
Anime is named after Annie Mae Bullock, better known as Tina Turner.
 
The Iron Giant is loosely based on Daniel Craig's childhood, in which he grew up in a scrapyard and ate cars.
 
The tiger in Winnie the Pooh wasn't real...
 
but the bear was...Sort of...
 
They had to put a panda in a suit since the grizzly originally cast kept mauling the rest of the actors.