Saturday, July 3, 2010

Trying to update here!

Okay, so my initial plan of doing five of these a day went to hell pretty quickly, but I'm trying. I'm doing this in the spare time I get between working on getting a film ready to shoot, taking care of my son, and other duties which is leaving me pretty behind, as usual. But I'll take what I can get I suppose. Onwards and upwards.

Code Red DVD are probably the masters at bringing me movies I should have watched in my childhood but somehow never did. Every film they release feels right at home with every other film I watched incessantly growing up, and Hot Moves would be a perfect companion to the other flicks channels like USA and TNT would air late at night. When they weren't playing horror movies, they'd be running wacky teenager movies like The Last American Virgin and Fraternity Vacation. I'm surprised this never made the rounds back then. The basic plot was ripped off in American Pie, a bunch of nerds commit to losing their virginity by the end of the summer, cue wacky hijinks. The one thing that helps the movie is that compared to the American Pie films, this film feels honest. These guys are truly hideous nerds, not like the "nerds" we see in modern teen films, who are really usually models dressed in bad clothing. I mean, does anyone buy that Chris Klein wouldn't have at least date-raped someone by the time he was a senior? On the other side of the coin, it wouldn't be too hard of a stretch to buy that these guys are still virgins twenty years after this movie. There are times where the movie feels creaky, and it's easy to see that it's pretty much just a series of set-pieces hung around the basic idea, but dammit, it's fun. A good time waster that reminds of you that not every movie about teens was filled with cellphone ads and emo music.
Sights within:
-Upon their first encounter with a hooker, they manage to burn her fucking house down. Genius.
-World's most gratuitous use of Venice Beach stock footage.
-You really have to wonder if some of these kids weren't like 15 at the time.
-World's best parody of Chariots of Fire.
Grade: B-
(Apparently, there are no trailers for this anywhere online, sadly. So just pretend you saw something funny here and move along.)


We figured since we had so much luck with Beach Blanket Bingo, we'd try out another of these Beach movies we've got laying around here but came up a lot shorter than last time. There's still some fun in here but nowhere near as much as the last one. Apparently, this was the last one with Frankie and Annette and at this point all parties had decided to check out, appearing only due to contractual obligations. The setup involves Frankie being stuck on a deserted island (and landing him probably only two days worth of shooting at the same time) and being tormented by the notion that Annette is too much of a whore to be left alone (though he states it in much nicer terms). I don't know if he just has overwhelming feelings of insecurity about his relationship or if Annette has been playing the surfing rounds between movies, but he finds a witch doctor (played by Buster Keaton!) who sends out a pelican to watch over Annette and make sure she's not sleeping around. This bird arrives just in time for some douche-bag to show up and come on to her, and the local Nazi bike leader decides to go clean, and some other stuff happens, and some others, and yadda yadda. Honestly, the movie seems to lose steam after about twenty minutes, yet still drags itself along until it culminates in a motorcycle race played in fast motion. That eternal opportunist Mickey Rooney even shows up to do some reality show shenanigans decades before there were reality shows, but he's nowhere near as funny as Don Rickles, or even anything in the last film. It's worth a watch, but maybe get some housework done while it's playing. If you're like me, you'll feel compelled to do it anyways about halfway through.
Sights within:
-Buster Keaton in a grass skirt.
-A fairly pregnant Annette Funicello in a bikini movie. I know, right?
-The world's most tedious serenade by motorcycle.
-Mickey Rooney copping a feel, pretty fucking blatantly.
-A climax that I'm pretty sure was ripped off from Wacky Races.
-A pelican that manages to live up to the thespian legacy of Frankie Avalon.
-Speaking of which, if you want to catch a truly nutball Frankie Avalon flick, try to find Blood Song, where he whistles a friendly jaunt as he stalks and kills teenagers slasher-style across the Oregon valley. It's bugshit crazy.
Grade: C-


You can look back at the history of Charles Band's Full Moon company and see the different stages it's gone through. Between the period of the glory days of Paramount-backed funding and bottom barrel DV-dreck there was a time where Charles lost his shit. Seriously. Blood Dolls is unbelievably insane, with no logic anywhere to be found. Head of the Family hails from this same period, though it's not as entertaining as Dolls. The movie mashes together a pretty typical film noir storyline with outlandish hillbilly freaks, not shying away from every redneck stereotype possible. The lead actor is surprisingly charismatic and his back and forth with the title character is always funny. He's the only character worth caring about, though, and I think that's why the movie starts to drag after so long, before it finishes off with a pretty good punchline. It may not be the best of Full Moon's oeuvre, but after watching shit like Talisman, you'll find a whole new respect for how batshit this film is.
Sights within:
-Just looking at the box-art is a sight itself.
-World's longest running "I-sent-a-letter-and-if-anything-happens-to-me-..." gag.
-Lance seems like Viggo Mortenson's slimeball ex-con brother.
-If you want to see pretty much the whole movie, just watch the damn trailer. Pretty much spells everything out.
Grade: C


Mario Bava is primarily known for his horror movies, but his excursions into other genres are just as memorable. This film was one of two he made in the peplum sub-genre. The story sets two brothers separated by war, one taken in by royalty, the other taken in by the clan of Viking warriors that had been defeated by the king, shortly before being killed himself by one of his traitorous generals. The movie gets you looking forward to their eventual reunion in the climax, but when it does come it feels a little anticlimactic. Once they realize who each other is, it amounts to "Oh, hey. Cool. How's it going?" before the story turns its attention back to the murderous general. Other than that, the movie's highly entertaining, in line with the older swashbuckling movies that aren't really made anymore. This one is elevated simply because Bava is at the helm. Even when there's absolutely no call for it, his multicolored lighting and camera work bring a style to the film that's great to watch, giving all of the Viking rituals a sense of magic. Definitely worth checking out.
Sights within:
-Cameron Mitchell looking like a reject from southern California.
-World's biggest underground tree. With purple lighting.
-A sequence involving arrows up the side of a castle which was ripped off wholesale in the recent Prince of Persia movie.
-Big burly Vikings in short skirts and bleached hair.
Grade: B


Yeee-haaaawww! There be some shenanigans goin' down over at yonder swamp. Sees, there be some blonde taken in by a good ol' boy swamp-water abortionist and raised as his own chilin'. This blonde swamp rat comes to be a local legend down 'round the town's waterin' holes. Shitkickers about town tries to pin down some no-good like murder on 'er, leadin' to a good ol' fashioned swamp-stomping. The film's fun enough but, as is in most cases with no-budget exploitation films, it gets bogged down with simply trying to come up with shit to do. There's poachers, felons, and yuppie assholes all trekking through with some kind of angle to eat up some running time. Everything comes together in a climax that makes you wonder if it had been written on the spot.
Sights within:
-A girl who lives in the swamp with apparently only one item of clothing that never gets so much of a spec of dirt on it. Ever.
-Ferlin Husky's theme song. Yep.
-A scene involving snakes that gets pretty dark completely out of nowhere.
-World's most fucked up twist ending, rendering the prior two minutes of the film pretty fucking messed up.
Grade: C-

Movies Watched: 5
-Hot Moves
-How to Stuff a Wild Bikini
-Head of the Family
-Erik the Conqueror
-Swamp Girl
New Movies Bought: 2
-Tetsuo 2: The Body Hammer
-Trick R Treat
Unseen DVDS: 3237
Unseen Blu-rays: 72
Unseen VHS: 119

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