Thursday, March 19, 2015

It's Wide Weird World of Cult Film's Third Anniversary!

I have to say, when I started doing these reviews, I thought it would end up like most things I work on...I'd get gung ho for a while before someone threw a foil ball and I'd go chasing it. But here it is, three years later, and I'm still subjecting myself to some of the oddest films ever made. Of course in some sick way I love it, but then again, any man who would willfully watch several Nick Millard films can't be legally declared sane either.

I'm still working on my list of favorite comedy films, I thought it'd be cool to put together a list of my favorite reviews from the over 300 posts I've done. 





Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Getting to Know Me - My 6 Favorite Horror Movies

This week (specifically March 19th) marks the three year anniversary of the Wide Weird World of Cult Films, and I thought I'd spend the next couple of weeks celebrating by letting you take a glimpse inside my brain and see what movies ended up shaping this slightly pudgy man before you. Since most of you love horror, I thought it only fitting that we start there...and going to go old school here by listing SIX of my all-time favorite horror films (in no particular order).


Pieces

This is hands down my favorite slasher. Take two parts George (Christopher and Lynda), throw in a dash of Bluto from Robert Altman's Popeye, center it with the "It Stinks" guy from Pod People, and throw in generous portions of nudity and mostly bad gore, and you have one of the most insane viewing experiences of your life. Bonus Jack Taylor included.



                                  


Burial Ground

This movie may have the barest of plot (along with the barest of ladies) and zombies that look like failed plaster life cast subjects and you have Burial Ground. There's a real sense of dread watching this, and I don't mean because it's bad. You know these schmucks are doomed, and we have to watch every uncomfortable moment of it. There is some good gore in this, and some grisly deaths, but the main reason to see this movie can be explained in two words...Peter Bark





My Bloody Valentine

Oh Canada, you land of glorious horror. This film picked up where Friday the 13th left off and went after a holiday filled with love and torn out hearts. The deaths are the highlight of this film,even more so now that the gorier deleted scenes have been restored. You really need to see that goofy comic relief fully have his head pop off and his body tumble to the ground in uncut glory. I laugh every time.

Another plus is that I've interacted with Paul Kelman (who played TJ) on facebook, and he is one cool sumbitch.






Dead And Buried

This film may be the most original use of zombies ever. They aren't brainless monster out for an all you can eat human buffet, but average looking citizens who just happen to murder people. Oh but it's alright because the friendly mortician will just fix em right up so they can join the town! These zombies are much more terrifying to me than the other kind, and Jack Albertson (in his final role) seems to relish playing an evil mortician playing God. The scene where he's performing his reconstruction magic is a true highlight.




City of The Living Dead

Geez this list makes me out to be some sort of undead enthusiast. I couldn't have a list of my favorite horror movies without something from Lucio Fulchi's trilogy in it. Now for the longest time The Beyond would have been my pic...and I'm still a huge fan of it, but over the years this one (also known as the Gates of Hell) has edged it out slightly. I wish I could say it's because of the plot, or the terrific acting, but in reality it's because I enjoy the deaths just too damn much. Three brain squeezings, a drill through the noggin, and a woman showing us the way her insides work in a way that Slim Goodbody never thought to make this a seminal gore classic.




Frailty

This one may be a bit of a surprise after I listed bloodfest after bloodfest, but this movie doesn't get nearly the love it should. The idea that God sends messages to folks saying "Hey yo, these folks are demons. How about I show you where there's a good axe to be found and you go chop em up for me...OK?" is something that fascinates me. Plus who wouldn't want God to blur out your face on video cameras? It sure would keep people from knowing how often I visited Big Pete's House of Sex Meats.



Next time I'll take a look at a subject that some people say I'm good at, and others wish I would stop...comedies!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Paul McCartney Really Is Dead: The Last Testament of George Harrison (2010)

Paul McCartney Really Is Dead: The Last Testament of George Harrison (2010)
Director: Joel Gilbert
Stars: The Beatles, William Campbell 

Conspiracy theories always seem to amuse me. Well you haven't seen a Bigfoot, so you can't disprove that they exist and invented rollerblades to escape being noticed, can you? I thought not. I don't believe aliens are the root cause of everything, I don't believe the Shining is about Indians landing on the moon, and I don't believe Barry Manilow had anything to do with 9/11, but man there sure are a lot of people who do. Maybe not Barry. We can't smile without him.

What I'm trying to say is I think most of these people are well meaning (sometimes not so well meaning) kooks. This also goes for the decades long rumor that Paul McCartney died in 1966 and a double has been playing him ever since. How preposterous, I thought. You're speaking out loud again my wife said. Sorry, I muttered. So like most rational folk, I thought it was a bunch of hooey.

Until I saw this documentary.

The sheer amount of evidence this film presents overwhelmed me. How they managed to cram it all into two hour and still tell a tremendously true story boggles my brain. So many things that didn't fit were put together some some gloriously fucked  up jigsaw puzzle where every piece was a new design. My eyes have been opened dear readers, and I have become the Eggman.

Things I Learned From Paul McCartney is Really Dead

- Learn about that terrible night when an argument between Paul and John Lennon turned into the horrific car crash that decapitated a superstar and could have created massive suicides.

- Those harmless "lookalike" contests could have much more sinister intentions than you'd like. I bet there's an ever rotating group of David Cassidy lookalikes ready to go at a moments notice. The Cassidy Army awaits!

- How Rita, the only other person who knew what happened that night, is changed via plastic surgery. When she later tries to blackmail the boys, the MI5 try to kill her, but only succeed in getting her leg amputated. They wouldn't hear the last of Rita, now going by the name Heather Mills!

- The sheer talent of John Lennon as he proceeds to turn every single Beatles song into a memorial for his lost friend and bandmate.

- Finding just the right phrases so that when played backwards (they'd give a clue Paul was dead) is not an easy task. I tried it and all I got playing backwards is "Dan Rather is Connie Chung". 

- I'm kind of surprised every album wasn't entitled "HEY EVERYONE, PAUL IS DEAD! HE'S FOOKING DEAD EVERYBODY!" Guess it'd be hard to put pictures showing he's dead on the cover.

- You have to give William Campbell some credit. Not only did he gleefully erase his identity to become Faul by having tons of plastic surgery, but he also didn't seem to mind that his bandmates were constantly calling him a fake and making him do shit on album covers to help corroborate that idea. But Lennon was murdered after telling Faul a few weeks earlier that he planned to tell the world what happened. That sneaky bastard!

You can watch this film on SnagFilms for free! Here's the trailer:





Oh, by the way, this is a mockumentary, and Paul is very much alive. Ringo however is a Bigfoot.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Custom Fridge Art for Sale!

Hi friends. As some of you know, I like to dabble in what I like to call "fridge art". This is art made specifically for someone to hang on their refrigerator. I've designed a few pieces which seemed to be popular and had questions like "How can I get one of those?" and "Why are you eating dinner at our house!?"

"Are You Ready for the 13th?"


 Well now you can own one of these beauties!


For the low low price of FIVE dollars...yes, FIVE DOLLARS, you can own one of these beautifully made pieces to hang on YOUR refrigerator door.

"Blue Velvet"

"Crunchberry Blues"

"Not So Great Muppet Caper"

"Playing With the Ghouls"

"Parting of the Orange Drink"

"Leaked Sloth Nude"

"Keep an Eye Out For Ya"

"Did I Do That?"

"Tarman's First Birthday"
Now if these don't interest you, don't worry. For the low low LOW price of TEN DOLLARS, I will create a custom one of a kind piece just for YOU. Do you think Picasso charged that much? Hell no!

If you are interested in purchasing one of my pieces, please email me at fridgeart4you@gmail.com. Paypal accepted. And if you buy a piece, by all means take a picture of your fridge and send it!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

White Cop (2014)

White Cop (2014)
Director: Jake Myers
Stars: Ben Kobold, David Liebe Hart, Liz Harvey

From time to time, I have people wanting me to review their movie. I've always been a bit hesitant because while I do love getting screeners (yay free!) there's this little part of me that needs to hold back if I hate it. Yes, the guy who took a dump on Nick Millard over and over again is someone who doesn't want to be a total dick to people only wanting reviews of their film.

So why did I decide to review this particular film? I saw the trailer and it actually appealed to me. Also I'm a fan of public access stuff and David Liebe Hart is a veteran of public access  due to his Junior Christian Science Bible Lesson Show.

This spoof of action films stars Ben Kobold as Kip White, a cop trying to take down the European Drug Cartel after they kill his partner and best friend. When he loses his badge he joins up with a new vigilante group to fight the cartel and end the rampant drug use of Stamp, which you can't mail but will send you to a far away place. Y'know, cause yer all fucked up.

Things I Took/Learned From White Cop

- The main character kind of alternated between hilariously inept and overwhelmingly annoying. Maybe it's because of the script (which wasn't bad at all, just a bit uneven), but Kobold does a good job overall.

- The flashback to Kip and his partner frolicking together is quite homoerotic and pretty damn funny. Who hasn't put two straws in their drink to share with his best friend...anyone? Please?

- I like that among all the insanity, there was a character (Dr. Wilder) who saw that Kip is a complete basket case. Of course it doesn't change one thing, but it's nice to see.

- I don't know about you, but I get leery whenever a tv reporter comes up to me in a bar and starts giving me pep talks. I've been on the news one too many times without my pants on.

- If you love 80's style synch music (sometimes called New Retrowave) then this film has you hooked up via the band Lazerhawk. I love that kind of music, so it's a big plus. I play it when I drive to the store. I like to pretend I'm Tubbs.

Overall, I really liked this movie. There were some plot points that got left unanswered, but for once I don't wish to spoil the movie. The look of the movie was very professional and there were traces of those by gone 80's action cop movies scattered among the comedy. The comedy hits far more than misses due to a good cast. I'm just happy to find a recent movie I didn't hate with a passion. That's the biggest thumbs up you can get from my cynical ass.

Plus David Liebe Hart is the mayor. I'd vote for him.

Here's the trailer for those of you who don't just take my word. Shame on you. I'm not hurt...I mean I am a little.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Cathy's Curse (1977)

Cathy's Curse (1977)
Director: Eddy Matalon
Stars: Alan Scarfe, Beverly Murray, Randi Allen

Having the reputation of a bad film "expert" (and I use that term as loosely as possible), there are films I hear a ton about. Films like Abby or The Visitor. Cathy's Curse was another one I've heard a ton about...none of it good. But I feel like I need to watch these films, so that you may be spared the pain. Some call me a saint, but most call me a moron.

The beginning shows a little girl and her father driving along when the girl makes daddy swerve out of the way of a fucking rabbit and guess what? Car catches on fire and they die. Did Thumper help them out while they roasted alive? I don't think so.

Cut to however many years later, and a family moves into this groovy old house. The family consists of a dad whose hair looks like a wig put on sideways, a mother who hysterically cries out half her lines, and Cathy, the poor kid who ends up cursed. You can tell she's cursed because she doesn't say much, and the dog hates her. There's also an alcoholic caretaker named Paul and the world's laziest housekeeper.

Cathy finds an ugly ass doll, and if you've seen any number of these films, you know that any dolls left in a house should be immediately burned or sent to someone you hate. Before long, Cathy's making shit break, talking weird, and terrorizing ugly old psychics. Oh, and mom is a total nutcase.

As far as possession films go, it's pretty standard. What makes this stand out amongst all the other Exorcist type ripoffs is that it makes no sense plot wise. Mom's going nuts, Dad's a clueless fucking putz who is oblivious to it all, and it's never explained why the fuck Cathy is possessed and what the evil spirit's mission was. If it's to make shit appear and hang out with drunk old caretakers, well live the dream you crazy bitch.

Things I Took/Learned From Cathy's Curse

- The print I saw was incredibly bad and made everyone look like the color of that sawdust they put on the floor to cover up puke. Come to find out, that's the best print anyone has. Might be for the best.

- Love it when Cathy breaks a bowl and the housekeeper picks up like two or three pieces before saying "there's, that's better". No, let's ignore the thirty or forty large chunks of sharp bowl laying on the ground. That's why you got terminated. By terminated I mean she got thrown out a window. 

- The mom in this film does everything in her power to make the focus on her. From the first scene where she shrilly tells her husband that she's had a nervous breakdown (I'm sure it came as a shock to him) on, she's shown to be batshit insane. Yeah, you may be right about your kid being in danger, but flailing your arms around and having to be institutionalized probably doesn't help your case.

- If your kid starts randomly disappearing and reappearing all over the place, continue to scold them as if nothing is happening. Show them that just because Satan is helping them, YOU are the one in charge.

- You haven't lived until you see a drunken old man and a bratty possessed kid mock a psychic for no good reason. It's how I get rid of those pesky Publishers Clearing House people. I can't cash that giant check, so stop it!

- Satanic devil magic tricks #52: If you walk into the cold lake, when you're pulled out you'll be dry as a bone! Ta-daaaaaaa!

- You know someone is evil when their face turns into a pizza. That's the devil's favorite food. He hates anchovies though.

- This movie's on numerous public domain sets (and also on youtube), but this is one of those movies you need to get a group together to riff on. This scene alone is worth the price of admission and a six pack of cheap beer.

"Extra rare piece of shit" is a terrific insult to call a medium.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Avalon (1989)

Avalon (1989)
Director: Michael J. Murphy
Stars: Rob Bartlett, Abigail Blackmore, Patrick Oliver

It's been a while since I've done a review, so I went into my vast collection of films to pick something suitable. My eye was caught by Avalon, a low budget sword and sorcery flick that has a lot of ties to the King Arthur legend...sort of. 

While I was watching, I kept noticing how familiar Merlin looked, until it dawned on me that this was the same guy who played the killer in one of my most popular reviews, Bloodstream. So I looked up the director of that film, and lo and behold, it's the same guy!

The movie's heroes are Owen, a slightly pudgy Conan type, Clotilde, which isn't some sort of disease but a maiden, and Keiran, the world's worst thief. They all seek the mysterious island of Avalon for different reasons and are helped along by Merlin.Yes, that Merlin. Sometimes as an old man, most of the time as a young warrior. Avalon is ruled by Morgana, not of the kissing bandit variety, and her band of average looking women (and a couple of goofy eunuchs). 

Can our heroes defeat Morgana? Will Clotilde find her missing love? And what the hell is Old Gregg doing on the island? He's got a mangina.

Knowing it's a Michael J. Murphy film, I immediately know that the budget is around forty pounds (or thirty in wildly inaccurate US dollars). However, there's a real charm in this movie. The sets are pretty imaginative, and despite all the flaws this is a pretty fun eighty minute time waster. 

The whole film is up on YouTube for those who wish to venture forth to Avalon.

Things I Took From Avalon

-Never carry golden apples around. You'll almost die in a small puddle of water and then watch your buddies juggle those now normal apples right in front of you. I can stand almost dying in 3 feet of water, but juggling? No way!

- They really missed out not having the Old Gregg looking monster drink Bailey's from a shoe.

- Druids are a bunch of assholes led by a guy doing a bad Jesus cosplay wearing a Christmas wreath on his head. I bet Stonehenge was just a building they were too stupid to finish. 

- This movie has some of the funniest fight scenes ever seen in a sword and sorcery flick. Everyone is trying so hard to neither hurt each other nor break their fake weapons that it comes off like Renaissance Fair outtakes.   

-Merlin becomes a wizard whore by sleeping with the Lady in the Lake in exchange for Excalibur. 

- Gotta admit I liked the reverse motion on the chains moving around. Very smooth.

-Gotta also admit, that Michael J. Murphy is equally as bad at doing stop motion animations. The herky jerky dragon being solid proof of that.

-We get some boobs in this, and that's cool, but please space out your love scenes a bit more. having three, almost four, one right after another just made me a little ill.

-Bit disturbed to see Merlin peeking through a wall at Owen having sex with Morgana (whom Merlin used to love). His grunting and only seeing him from behind makes me think he's pulling his own little sword. I'm surprised he didn't put his penis through the hole like in Porky's.

- As disturbing as that was, it pales when Merlin realizes he hadn't slept with Morgana but one of her laughing lady friends. His response to that? He sexually assaults her. Rape ain't magic Merl...it's simply wrong.

- As disjointed as the plot got, I really enjoyed this film. I'm now on a quest to seek out Michael J. Murphy's other films. I hope there's no wizard rape in them.

YOU'LL GO BLIND, MERLIN!