Monday, October 31, 2016
Suddenly, all those repressed memories of Halloween: Resurrection resurfaced and I got mad. Really, REALLY mad.
Because fuck this movie in the asshole. Right up in that asshole. Just get right in there and go balls deep. All the way in.
Let's back up. For those of you who are somehow unfamiliar with Halloween, the series follows the wacky exploits of serial killer Michael Myers. He's got a real hard on for killing his family members. In the first, he killed his older sister. In the second, we learn our main heroine, Laurie Strode, is Michael's younger sister, so therefore that's why he's trying to kill her. In the fourth and fifth movies, he's after his niece, and in the sixth he kills her and then tries to sacrifice a baby (long story short - it's his inbred rape baby he had with his niece). A seventh film told four, five, and six to go fuck themselves and brought Laurie back. After that was a success, we landed here. With Busta Rhymes. And Tyra Banks.
From the back of "The Halloween Collection" three-pack from Miramax "Classics" (quotation marks used for emphasis on this set that includes the sixth, seventh, and eighth movies), the plot is as follows: "The reality programmers at DangerTainment have selected Rudy, Bill, and a group of thrill-seeking teenagers to spend one fun-filled night in the childhood home of serial killer Michael Myers. But the planned live broadcast turns deadly when the evening of excitement becomes a night of horror as Michael himself decides to crash the party."
Now, remember, this is 2002. So reality TV was in its initial climb to pop culture phenomenon. This also borrows from the far superior The Blair Witch Project by having all the characters equipped with cameras to record their reaction to the endless amounts of jump scares. These things are not excuses. Just setting this scene for you. Let's just get to it, shall we?
Friday, October 28, 2016
This time around, we'll see the final appearance of Christopher Lee as Count Dracula AND the final showdown between Lee's Count and Peter Cushing's Van Helsing. It's Hammer Films' 1973 Count Dracula and His Vampire Bride - also known as Count Dracula and His Vampire Brides and The Satanic Rites of Dracula. I will also warn that while this is Hammer and it is Lee and Cushing, sadly, this is not a particularly great installment. Most will agree it is better than the one before it (Dracula A.D. 1972), but it seemed that Hammer had a hard time bringing the Count into the present day.
I don't think Hammer, or Lee, or Cushing really need much of an introduction. These are all hallowed names of horror royalty. I do find it interesting that Hammer was able to more successfully create a series of films featuring Dracula than Universal did despite Bela Lugosi's iconic performance. Universal's Dracula spawned four more movies dealing with the Transylvanian, but Hammer made nine films in their Dracula series, arguably making their series the one, true Dracula of note.
So, from the 50-Pack Drive In Movie Classics set, our synopsis reads: "Count Dracula (Christopher Lee) has developed a deadly strain of bubonic plague. He plans to use his Satan-worshiping disciples to release the plague in London in an effort to destroy the human race. Standing in the way is Dr. Van Helsing (Peter Cushing), Dracula's nemesis, who must not only stop his archenemy but also save mankind."
Let's get started and send this month of vampire flicks back to hell where they belong!
Friday, October 21, 2016
Naschy is known for playing just about every monster you can think of which has granted him a distinction of being the Spanish Lon Chaney. Despite playing Frankenstein's Monster, the Mummy, the Hunchback, and Count Dracula, it's his work as cursed werewolf Waldemar Daninsky in an entire series named "The Hombre Lobo Series" This run found him playing Daninsky a grand total of TWELVE times.
And we can't even get a guy to stick around for more than four James Bond movies before he splits. Sheesh.
Naschy is a definite heavyweight in non-English horror. Most of his movies have found some sort of release here, but it's likely the masses would have hardly heard of him unlike the Christopher Lees and Peter Cushings who came over in the Hammer and Amicus films of the 60s and 70s. Yet those real horror snobs know Naschy quite well for his varied career playing monsters. He's also got a fairly recognizable leap he created for when he's all wolfed out and jumping and attacking people.
From the 50-pack Legends of Horror DVD set, our synopsis is as follows: "A werewolf is brought back to life and then heads off to the countryside in search of a safe haven and also prey. Two unsuspecting girls have their car break down while in search of a legendary vampire queen's tomb. When finding refuge in the castle of the revived werewolf, they all uncover the vampire's final resting place and unleash her from her sleep."
I like just about everything in that synopsis. Of course it's two unsuspecting girls that get caught up in this because, of course, their car breaks down. Why are they looking for the vampire queen's tomb? Who fucking cares and stop asking questions, asshole.
Friday, October 14, 2016
ANYway... This week's vampire flick is something new. It's not a popular movie and I'm curious if even that many vampire movie superfans know about it. It's called Night Fangs and it's yet another movie brought to my attention thanks to a subscription to Bizarre TV on my Roku device.
This is directed by Ricardo Islas from Uruguay who's been directing movies on the reg for about thirty years now. He's a bit of a do-it-yourself kinda guy as he also wrote the movie, produced it, edited it, and stars as Professor Nashy. He definitely has a real care for the genre as he takes his character name from the legendary Spanish actor Paul Naschy, who stars in next week's vampire flick. He also seems to have a real Roger Corman take too by taking on all sorts of roles in the production of this movie to help make this as much on the cheap as he can.
I'll most definitely point out some glaring inconsistencies with this movie's story, but I gotta give it to Islas, he gets an A for effort with this flick.
The back of the DVD box tells us: "Two lesbian art teachers obsessed with eternal youth have managed to get Elizabeth Bathory's diary. Performing bloody rituals, they accidentally unleash an ancient evil that will devour their flesh and souls... This rare, raw, and extremely violent independent feature revisits the vampire myth and presents an outrageous new take on the theme, taking audiences into a world of nightmares that resemble the style of an old Hammer classic and the gore and darkness of European cinema. A new-born cult classic."
Let's get started, but I know from previous viewings that the only real thing that is true after the ellipses in the above synopsis is that it is an independent feature. The rest of it is... kinda bullshit.
Still it gets a fucking A for effort.
Friday, October 7, 2016
That's right, Jack... Blacula is getting up in this blog.
This was the horror/blaxploitation mash up that started them all. This one also has the widest appeal. Yeah, it's probably because of the title. I mean, you see a movie called Blacula, and you think to yourself, "Holy shit, I have to see this. It's gotta be great!" At that point, with a title like that, you either have to play it as a parody or you play it straight as shit.
They played it super straight, motherfuckers.
We could talk about William Crain, whose directing credits only total nine on Internet Movie Database - two of which are this one and another B-Movie Enema alum, Dr. Black, Mr. Hyde. I'd rather talk about William Marshall, who played Blacula himself. This dude has an IMDb listing that mirrors all the shit I grew up on. His onscreen credits include Pee Wee's Playhouse (as the King of Cartoons), Star Trek (in "The Ultimate Computer"), a couple episodes of The Man from U.N.C.L.E., and a movie called Honky. His voice work had him working on The Real Ghostbusters, and Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends where he played Tony fucking Stark and the Juggernaut. That's goddamn awesome. It's not terribly surprising that he worked often in his career that spanned five decades. He had a pretty decent screen presence and had a commanding speaking voice. Both of which helps him in both his turns as Blacula (the sequel called Scream, Blacula, Scream).
From the back of my Blacula DVD box, our synopsis is: "Urban action and fatal attraction give rise to a groove beyond the grave! It is 1780, and African Prince Mamuwalde (William Marshall) travels to Transylvania to gain Count Dracula's support in ending the slave trade. Instead, the Count makes Mamuwalde a vampire! Now, nearly two centuries later, Mamuwalde emerges as the cool, dressed to kill Blacula, who lusts for human blood - and an L.A. woman (Vonetta McGee). Co-starring Denise Nicholas and Ketty Lester, this Best Horror Film winner grabs you by the neck and doesn't let go!"
And, yes, it did win the 1972 Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films award for Best Horror Film. That was the first year of the awards, and they are best known now as the Saturn Awards.