Haley Mills stars in the Parent Death Trap.
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Monday, April 29, 2013
Superman 2 (1980)
Director(s): Richard Lester (official) Richard Donner (originally)
Stars: Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder, Terrance Stamp
I know I'm picking an obvious one here, but for the sake of those who haven't seen it, let me explain the plot.
Superman inadvertently frees three super criminals from Krpton from their flat prison called the Phantom Zone. They come to Earth (led by the wonderfully evil General Zod) and decide to take over it. While this is going on, Lois finds out the Clark Kent is really Superman. They fall in love, Supes takes her to his crib, and they knock super boots.He then fucks it all up by turning mortal, where he's easy pickens for truck driver assholes. Zod and company look for Supes, Supes fights them, and of course the sequels aren't called General Zod 3: The Wrath of Mute Guy, so you know the Man of Steel beats them. He then wipes out Lois' memory and things are back to normal.
I'm doing this a little differently because I recently learned of another cut of Superman 2. The "new" version is actually the footage that Richard Donner directed before getting fired. Only 30% of Donner's footage made it to the actual theatrical release, so it was fascinating to see what a 95% Donner helmed Superman 2 looked like.
So with that I present to you...
Six Things I Liked AND Disliked About Richard Donner's Version of Superman 2
1. No Paris sequence. I've always hated it anyways, and felt Donner's version sets a better tone and gives it a better flow with the first film.
2. More focus on General Zod and gang. Zod is one of my all time favorite bad guys. From his almost bored expression he wears throughout the film, to the many times he yells "KNEEL BEFORE ZOD!" he is what a true villain is suppose to be. No wisecracks, no pandering to his gang, just straight up badass.
3. I did NOT like the fact that they took almost all the humor out of it. I understand taking goofy shit like the sight gags during the Metropolis fight (wigs coming off, guy in phone booth won't stop talking despite hurricane like winds), but took all the comical elements out of Non, the mute previously childlike member of Zod's group. Sure he looks menacing, but now he has no personality. Might as well be called Generic Henchman #12.
Oh, but let's add in a fucking toilet scene when Lex and Tessmacher goes to the Fortress of Solitude. Yes, toilets flushing and all. I'm surprised they didn't talk about how hard the toilet paper was. Guess we now know Superman shits. Thanks Donner.
4. Marlon Brando's giant scary head. All over the damn place. It's horrific, and am shocked when Lois didn't run screaming. I thought he was going to eat Clark at least three times. The horror...the horror.
5. They took out the Mount Rushmore scene. I'll underline that....THEY TOOK OUT THE FUCKING MOUNT RUSHMORE SCENE! They put in some stupid scene of the Washington monument going down. Whoop-dee shit. At least my favorite sequence in the film, the Metropolis fight, looks great.
6. The ending was a mixed bag for me. On one hand, I liked how Clark kisses an upset Lois and her memory is blanked out. Now she doesn't have to suffer knowing she can't be with Clark. On the other hand, between the first shoot and the reshoots, Margot Kidder must have discovered meth because she is looking rough. It's upsetting because of how pretty she looks throughout Donner's cut.
As soon as I saw Perry White's toothpaste slowly come out of the tube, I knew Superman was gonna do a rerun. What I mean is is that Superman flies around the Earth moving back time once again. Sure, Lois doesn't know who he is anymore, but now the very villains he killed are back alive (albeit in the Phantom Zone again). How does that shit make any sense!?
Overall, I liked both films. The Lester one will always be my favorite super hero film, but Donner's version clears up a lot of plot holes and makes the film seem more serious. I'm sure somebody's does a fan edit where they put the best of both together...and I'd probably watch that too.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Psycho Cop (1989)
Director: Wallace Potts
Stars: Bobby Ray Shafer, Palmer Lee Todd, Jeff Qualle
If there was ever a title that wasn't misleading, this would be it. He's a cop, and the guy sure as hell is psycho...so no false advertising there. The story...what little there is of one....is 6 young douchebags going to the longest mansion ever out in the middle of nowhere to drink beer. That's all these fuckers do is ask for beer. They may be the most functional alcoholics ever shot on film. Anyway, Psycho Cop follows them there and begins killing them one by one. If you're expecting gore, or nudity, or anything resembling decent acting, well you're shit out of luck here pal. It is amusing to watch Psycho Cop walk around like he dropped a deuce in his pants, and the movie is competently shot, I can see why there hasn't been an outcry for this to be on DVD here in the US. Apparently there's a sequel to this, but fuck that noise.
Six Things I've Learned About Psycho Cop
1. Judging by what these guys brought, the only meals they were having was beer and Stouffer's. Yum. It's pretty funny (and kinda gross) to see that Stouffer's hasn't changed their packaging in over 20 years.
2. This film attempts to take any ideas of jerk off material away by dressing the women in swimsuits that would be considered risque...in 1947.
3. Psycho Cop has the ability to appear right in front of you no matter where you are. This leads to some awkward moments when you have to take a shit in the middle of being chased. He'll turn his head though. He's not a MONSTER.
4. Don't know why Psycho Cop's the way he is? Don't worry, another cop will let you know the whole backstory before his heart is "ripped" out. Loose lips sink ships, asshole!
5. This movie makes sure that our characters say that something strange is going on every 30 seconds. It's like a guy who tells a sorta funny joke, and then repeats the joke for an hour and a half.
6. I sorta felt sorry for Psycho Cop because he tried to do the Freddy Kruger clever lines delivery, but all he could come up with is "have a heart" and "you have the right to remain dead". Bless his satanic heart,
Friday, April 19, 2013
The Psychotronic Man (1979)
Directed by (and everything else): Jack M Sell
Stars: Peter Spelson, Curt Colbert, Robin Newton
I put 1979 on here as it's what the IMDb says, but I've seen 1980 and 1975 listed as well. By the look of the film I'm guessing '75 was the shooting date. Anyway, this is about a barber named Rocky who can apparently kill people with his mind. After taking the long way home (a long long cross country trip home), Rocky passes out in his car. He wakes up to find that he's the owner of the first flying car in the US (Repo Man's glowing car was a couple years later). He also has fast forward visions of the future, where ugly people are screaming in his fish eyed face. There's some goofy cops chasing him, and there's a LOT of scenes where nothing happens at all.
Despite all that, this flick has a certain charm to it that made it oddly enjoyable. Also the inspiration for the greatest zine/books ever, The Psychotronic Video Guide.
Six Things I've Learned From The Psychotronic Man
1. It's probably not going to help on gas if your drive home consists of driving through several states and requiring that you pull over to rest up for the rest of the trip home.
2. I want a radio station that only plays songs that are 30 seconds long all the time. In all seriousness, the music is one of the best things about this film...that and it's 80 minutes long.
3. I don't care how good a job he does with hair, NEVER get a haircut from a man with a pompadour.
4. This movie must have saved a ton of money on lights because everything is in the damn dark. It does help in the club scene though as everyone there looked like school teachers out on a bender. Or they could have been bears...I'm not sure.
5. If you live in a huge house, and you're forced to have breakfast on a little glass table right in front of the front door, you might want to look into an interior decorator.
6. If a late to the film CIA Agent shows up to tell you to NOT shoot the crazy mind killing barber, the best thing to do is to think "fuck it" and gleefully shoot him down anyways. (SPOILER) Too bad Rocky the Flying Barber flies away.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
Viva Kinevel! (1977)
Director: Gordon Douglas
Stars: Evel Kinevel, Gene Kelly, Lauren Hutton
Wow. In the 70's, when people were going nuts over people doing stupid shit like jumping over flaming sharks covered in barbed wire on a unicycle, the king was undoubtedly Robert "Evel" Knievel. Unfortunately, Kinevel wasn't exactly the most family friendly person around, so I guess his PR guys decided to help his image by portraying him as a sweet kid loving guy. Of course, Kinevel really has no personality so they threw away a lot of money to get stars like Gene Kelly, Red Buttons, Lauren Hutton, and even Leslie Nielson to throw their dignity into the trashcan. Explains why Kelly did Xanadu after this..
The plot, as ridiculous as it is, involves a drug pusher (Nielson) paying Kinevel a lot of money to do some shows in Mexico. What Kinevel doesn't know (besides how to act) is that they plan to kill him and use his jumpsuited corpse to smuggle drugs into the country. I'm not kidding. With him is Gene Kelly as his drunk sidekick and Lauren Hutton as a photographer/love interest who apparently is paid to hang out with Kinevel.
This movie is so awful. AWFUL.
Six Things I've Learned from Viva Kinevel!
1. No matter how much acting talent they put around him, the only expression Evel can pull off is confusion. He also makes any nice thing he does comes off like he wants to punch babies in the face.
2. What magazine was Hutton working for that she needed to take shots of Kinevel's "last" jump? Dismembered Weekly? RIP Today?
3. By no means do you attempt to make Mexico look any different than the US as far as locations go. Just throw some Mexican banners around and nobody will know that you used the same f'in stadium twice. Well...it might have worked if they didn't use Frank Gifford (in his same outfit) for BOTH stadium jumps.
4. Evel enjoys making his drunk buddies hang out with their wimpy kids. It's a little game he plays.
5. I've always dreamed of the day that a celebrity would violently wake me up at 2am to give me some shitty toys of theirs. It almost happened, but turned out Mickey Rooney was just beating me up for the twenty bucks I owed him.
6. If you know your buddy is going to die when his bike explodes, it's probably not a good idea to knock him out and do the jump yourself. Maybe just telling the guy would have worked out better. I dunno though...I'm not jumping over shit.
Thursday, April 11, 2013
The Shining (1980)
Director: Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd
This is one of those films that all of us who enjoy horror movies know about (and cherish), but I'll explain the plot anyways.
Jack Torrance, failed writer, successful drunk, and accidental child abuser, gets a job as the caretaker of the Overlook hotel in Colorado. He and his family get this giant creepy ass hotel to themselves for the winter. Plenty of places to sleep, food coming out the yin yang, and all the peace and quiet one needs to write a novel. Oh yeah, the previous caretaker went bonkers and chopped up his family, but let's "overlook" that (I slay me). Once there, the hotel starts fucking with Jack's head until he's sipping on imaginary booze, making out with old rotting corpses, and generally spouting off Tonight Show lines. His weird kid has the "Shining", which means he writes words backwards in blood, has tenants living in his mouth, and is forced to see two ugly twins want to play with him. Poor Shelley Duvall.
Six Things I've Learned From The Shining
1. Call me a bastard, but if some kid was sending me horrific images from a great distance, my first thought wouldn't be to go help the kid but to want him to shut up so I can finish watching this rerun of Designing Women. Oh that Suzanne Sugarbaker!
2. So if you become part of the hotel, I imagine in addition to those great parties of the 20's you get to go to (see the ending) that you would also be stuck watching some fat guy from Knoxville on vaction taking a massive dump in his bathroom as well. No wonder that hotel is angry all the time.
3. I really want some paintings of nekkid women with giant afros like Halloran had in his condo. Since he's dead....hmm...
4. The scene where Jack meets the former caretaker (demoted to being a butler) is one of the creepiest scenes I've ever seen. I still scream and run away when I see one of those guys that hand out towels in fancy men's rooms.
5. All Work and No Play went to number 3 on the NY Times Bestsellers list.
6. I find it hilarious that to scare the wits out of Shelley Duvall, the hotel immediately thinks to have her interrupt oral sex between fozzie bear and his well dressed suitor.
Monday, April 8, 2013
Barb Wire (1996)
Director: David Hogan
Stars: Pamela Anderson, Udo Kier, Steve Railsback,
Director: David Hogan
Stars: Pamela Anderson, Udo Kier, Steve Railsback,
21st century. USA. The second civil war. The whole country is in a state of emergency. What was formerly called the American Congress now rules with fascistic methods. There is only one free city left, Steel Harbor, headquarter for the resistance. This is the hometown of Barb Wire, owner of the night club Hammerhead. As times aren't good, Barb has a second job. She's a bounty hunter and you probably wouldn't want her after you. Barb's credo is to never take sides for anybody and that's the only way to survive these days. As her former lover Axel Hood appears asking for a favour, Barb suddenly finds herself to be key player on high political stage. Now she has to take sides...
Six Things I Learned from Barb Wire
1)Pamela Anderson has big boobs.
2) Don’t call Barb Wire babe.
3) Night clubs are even more popular in war-torn apocalypses.
4) A medical record for prostitutes is a brilliant idea!
5) If you can’t pay Barb Wire, she’ll sick her dog on your nuts.
6) Nothing beats eating fried chicken on a crane.
Friday, April 5, 2013
So the "New Barbarians" are Fred The Hammer Williamson in one of Cher's old outfits, an exploding man in a helmet, and a mop headed little boy with a slingshot. End of the Earth indeed.
Wednesday, April 3, 2013
Mystics in Bali (1981)
Director: H. Tjut Djalil
Stars: No one
I'm not familiar with Indonesian horror, so I'll go by what I had seen onscreen. So some white looking woman (from the "U.S.A", that's how you know she's not from there) hanging out with the Indonesian Billy Dee Williams wants to learn black magic. Billy Dee hooks her up with some ugly witch that won't stop laughing, who proceeds to tattoo this woman's leg with her tongue. Billy Dee and White lady fall in love after 15 minutes together, and then the White lady starts her training. What does her training entail? Well, if you guessed turning into a pig, laughing like you entered Big Jim's Laughing Gas Emporium, and throwing up pet store mice, then you've watched this movie before you poor dope. If that wasn't weird enough, White lady's head (along with her entrails) starts detaching itself from her body and flies around eating babies straight out the babymaker.
This may be one of the top three weirdest films I've ever seen. EVER. Better than Lady Terminator at least.
Six Things I've Learned From Mystics in Bali
1. I heard that the guy playing Billy Dee had it in his contract that he had to be wearing a different shirt in each scene, regardless of continuity or any sense of logic.
2. If you study things such as Voo Doo and the black arts, a sure sign of your knowledge is to refer to it as "mumbo jumbo". It shows you've done your homework...in calling that school on the back of a matchbook.
3. Don't want the viewer to know what the fuck is going on? Then do what this movie does and plop the viewer from one scene to the next with no transition shots or any idea of what day it is. Who needs logic?
4. I'm not entirely sure how turning into an ordinary pig will help you defeat your enemies unless you can clog up their arteries when they slaughter you and make you into pork chops. That'll show em!
5. So Billy Dee sets this woman up to learn black magic and then he runs off and tells his uncle to fight the witch (they have some history...probably concerning a failed booty call). I had the perfect solution for Billy Dee...DON'T TAKE THE WOMAN YOU LIKE TO TRAIN WITH A WITCH IN THE FIRST PLACE! Some hero.
6. Always be sure to have some lady stalking the main characters for the first 15 minutes, and then don't show her again until she tries to help fight the witch in the LAST 15 minutes and fails miserably. THAT'S good character development !