Archive for the Brain Damage Category

U SAD, BRO?

Posted in Brain Damage, Devil Fetus, douchebag, Dusk-To-Dawn Horrorthon, Hell Night, Humanoids from the Deep, movie marathon, Phantasm II, ramblings of a loser, The Blob ('88), The Entity, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 13, 2016 by efcontentment

Hi lady and gentleman! How are you doing? Me, I’m very tired. You see, I went to Vegas the previous weekend and I paid good money to go on a tour via a time machine to go back to the past. It got kinda boring, once the initial surprise of being in the past wore off, so I passed the time (haha) by sneaking away from the tour group and then I got chased by a T-Rex! It was totes kewl, you guys! Anyway, I’m back now and I’ve noticed things are different. It appears that everybody except the assholes are so down about something. Sad!

Usually I don’t bother rambling about something once it’s been a week after the fact but I can’t go outside because there’s people blocking the streets protesting something so here I go about last month — October 29th, to be exact — when my buddy and I attended the 11th Annual Dusk-to-Dawn Horrorthon held at the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica.

Among the people in line waiting for a good time — and among those waiting to be let into the Aero Theatre for the Horrorthon — were the usual pajama wearers and the provisioned and the ones already tucking into said provisions, all of them guaranteeing a more difficult time getting through this all night marathon scheduled to begin at 7:30pm and end sometime around ???

But as the wizened ol’ prostitute was wont to declare, different strokes for different folks. Personally what helps is to try to have an at-home movie marathon the night before in order to acclimate my sleeper to the demanding overnight schedule. (This used to be easier when I was unemployed and each day and night blended together in a nightmarish amorphous d’night or n’ay impossible to distinguish from each other.) That way I can sleep all day and get up a couple hours before the festivities all refreshed and ready to take these flicks on.

Also, I keep it light in the sustenance department, if possible I only have a cup of coffee (in the big time) and nothing else until the marathon, where even then I’d tread lightly — maybe some popcorn — until they bring out the pizza (this usually happens after the second film) and not treading at all on sugar and/or caffeine and/or energy drinks until the last couple of films where the eventual crash won’t set in until the end.

It was a packed house, as always. Many people wearing costumes or maybe those were just regular everyday wear because I’m old and un-hip and can’t tell the difference. Official Horrorthon trading cards were being sold in the lobby and I bought three packs. The cards featured many of the characters that have popped up on stage in past Horrorthons, like the Corn Gorn, Wizard Policeman, and Frost Nixon, among many others. The back of the cards had stats and a “credit score”; the credit score was used throughout the night during raffles for stuff like Horrorthon action figures. They’re pretty cool, these cards, and I have already started putting them away and I guess I have to thank the Horrorthon peeps for turning me into a card collector. Looking forward for next year’s set, if they continue with it. In the meantime, I’m gonna slam these cards on a table in front of all those Magic the Gathering nerds and be all like “WHAT! MAKE A MOVE, SON!”

So, as per usual the host Grant Moninger came down and got us all riled up and hyped up and brought on said characters — usually turning around with his back to the crowd in order to do the voices for some of them — and it’s funny how throughout the years I slowly stopped being a fuddy duddy about it and have grown to enjoy these inter-movie segments of All Out Fuckery. (Or maybe not, considering I just used the word “fuddy duddy” which feels like something only fuddy duddies would say.) I still wear earbuds during these high-volume moments, though. I like my shout-fests slightly muffled, unless I’m the one shouting.

(Little pre-show digression: So I went to the bathroom before the show started and I saw Grant walking out into the lobby. One of the volunteers called out to him “Grant” and then he called him again and Grant then turned around and said a kind of too-loud “WHAT?” in a tone that I have chosen to interpret in two ways:

1) It’s a loud raucous room and he is only trying to make himself heard.

2) Throwing a Horrorthon — or any event, really — is some stressful shit. It’s tough enough to throw a party, knowing that even if you’re throwing it and it’s at your house and it’s in your honor, you will be the one most likely NOT to have a good time. Because you really shouldn’t. You should be too busy making sure everybody is comfortable, the food and drink is steadily flowing, making sure nobody is fucking in the bathroom, making sure nobody is putting out their Kools on your floor, etc. Now imagine *that* on an all-nighter like at the New Beverly or here at the Aero. What do we, the guests, know what is going on behind-the-scenes? It could all be on the verge of falling the fuck apart at any moment for all we know. And that could be some stressful shit, man. Anyway, I’m just saying for all the shit I talk, I appreciate what guys like Grant and company at the Aero — and everybody at the New Beverly — have to go through in order to give us a good time. Unless they’re not having a difficult time and are actually enjoying themselves — which in that case, I take it back, go pound sand, ya bastids.)

And so we were shown the “T.J. Hooker” clips where the opening credits would include names of people in the Horrorthon audience along with the names of the characters they supposedly play on the show, and the credits would continue on into the events of the episode itself. Too much time passed between that night and today, and I don’t take notes for these things, and for some reason my head begins to throb with pain and my eyes begin tearing up blood if I try to remember anything past last Tuesday, so I couldn’t tell you some of the character names given to various people in the audience. I only remember some of the events on-screen where I think a donut shop was robbed and T.J. and his partner chase after the suspect and I think the suspect was really young and he gave up because he had his whole life ahead of him or whatever. If that even happened at all, I might just be making this up because I think that’s what happened.

Then we had old favorites like the Alan Alan Alan marmotRed Roof Inn commercial (people brought their own remotes to hold up when homebody said “Remote!), Stop Using Dirty Catheters, those Living God clips for curing various maladies, Helicopter/Not a Helicopter, among many others, but the newest additions were a series of campaign ads that played throughout the night for Brendan Byrne, former two-term Democratic governor of New Jersey. After a few of these, the audience eventually started yelling out “Feel the Byrne!” I looked him up and he’s still kicking at 92 years old, and he also said a while back that Gov. Chris Christie was “the best candidate that the Republicans have” for President of the United States this electionnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnooooooooooooooooOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHJJJJJJEEEEEEEEEEEEEEZZZZZZZZZZUUUUUUUUUUSSSSSSSSSFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKUUUUUUUUUURRRRRRRRRRRMMMMMMMMMMMMMMHHHHHHEEEEEEEEEEEELLLLLLLLLLPPPPPPUUUUUUUUSSSSSSSSSSSSSSYYYYYYOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUWWWWWWIIIIIIIIILLLLLLLLNNNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOTTTTTTTBBBBBBBEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSAAAAAAAVVVVVVEEEEEEEDDDDDDDBBBBBBBBBYYYYYYYYTTTTTTTTHHHHHHHHHHHEEEEEEEEEHHHHHHHHOOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLLLYYYYYYYYYYYGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSSSSSSSSSSSSSSTTTTTTTTTYYYYYYYYYYYYYYOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUUWWWWWWWWWWIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIILLLLLLLLLLLLLNNNNNNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTBBBBBBBBBBBBBEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSAAAAAAAAAAAAVVVVVVVVVVVVVEEEEEEEEEEEEDDDDDDDDDDDDDBBBBBBBBBBBBYYYYYYYYYYYYYYTTTTTTTTTTTTHHHHHHHHHHHHHEEEEEEEEEEEGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGOOOOOOOOOOOOOODDDDDDDDDDDDPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNNNNNNIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACCCCCCCCCCCCCCTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIILLLLLLLLLLLLLLLNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOTTTTTTTTTTTTTTBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!ILIVE!PH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGNPH’NGLUIMGLW’NAFHCTHULHUR’LYEHWGAH’NAGLFHTAGN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

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Whew! Sorry about that guys. Something happened there, my head started throbbing again and blood was coming out of my mouth, ears, nose, eyes and…let me check….nope, that’s it for orifices. I have a spot of grey hair on one side of my scalp now. Weird. Anyway, where was I?

I would be far beyond remiss to not mention the two different music videos for “Like an Eagle” by Dennis Parker that always gets the crowd worked up. I’m gonna say it, I legitimately dig the fuck out of this song. It makes me want to go on that time machine again and take it to the late 70s where I would do all the cocaine while rocking out to this song.

They also showed this all night.

We were given a nice serving of nostalgia before each film; it was the old KTLA 5 intro for “Movies til Dawn”, which I remember from way back in the day. You see, kids, before informercials some of your local television stations would air movies in the middle of the night. You watched and you discovered stuff this way, rather than spending 45 minutes going through Netflix’s ever-dwindling library before deciding on one and then only watching two minutes of it before going back to the library for another one.

The first film was the 1988 remake of The Blob, directed by Chuck Russell and co-written by Russell with muthafuckin’ Frank Darabont. So I guess it’s no surprise to tell you that this is much better than you’d think. The movie stars Shawnee Smith from the Saw movies and Kevin Dillon from that HBO show about Hollywood douchebags and like the original it takes place in a Small Town U.S.A. where a meteorite lands and out of it comes this gelatinous mass — a Blob, if you will — and one unfortunate hobo later, this thing is on a rampage, getting larger and larger with each human it engulfs.

I’ve seen this three times while I’ve only seen the original once, and that was a long time ago, so until I watch the 1958 version again it’s unfair to say that clearly the remake is better. But it certainly feels like it’s better. Unlike the original you spend time with some of these characters and you’re not sure who’s getting blobbed and who isn’t, and sometimes it’ll surprise you with its choices. For example — fuck it, I’m spoiling everything here — the movie introduces Donovan Leitch’s character before anyone else and spends enough time with him that it’s a shock — at least it was to me, the first time — that he ends up #2 on the Blob list.

Then you have the kind waitress and the tough-but-kinda-fair-except-to-Dillon’s-character sheriff and they clearly have a thing for each other; they’re barely making that shift from Friendly to See Me After My Shift is over. Their final moment together is a giddily fucked-up one; she’s trapped in a phone booth outside the diner which is getting all Blobbed up, calling for the sheriff. The operator tells her that he’s unavailable because he left for the diner. The waitress looks to the side and there’s the sheriff’s body floating by her in the Blob — right before the Blob enters the booth to make sure she and the sheriff go on their first and final corrosive date together.

I liked those characters — shit, I liked all the characters, save for a couple — and that’s one of the things that makes this remake of The Blob at least feel like it’s better to me at the moment. It does not fuck around. Anybody can get Blobbed — even little kids get it — and when they do it won’t be pretty. Or fast. It’s definitely gorier and more disturbing, where it didn’t go more detailed than just seeing someone get jelly all over himself and fall out of frame. This one, you see these poor people try to scream but they got Blob all over them, you see faces melt or stretch out, you get the sense that the victims do not go quick.

And that right there I find fucking terrifying. If you are chased by Jason Voorhees or Michael Myers and you are caught, the horror ends one sudden machete swing or knife stab later. You don’t have to worry about a Jason or a Michael anymore. However they kill you, sure it’ll be painful but it’ll be quick. (At least in the originals, because I know they’re more sadistic in the remakes.)

But the Blob? Shit, man, the horror begins when it gets you. How fucking long does it take to be digested by that thing? Too long, whatever the answer is. OK fine, I’m sure the Sarlaac has it beat in that department, but at least the Sarlaac is stationary and as long as you stay away from it you’ll probably be fine. But the Blob is coming for you, bro.

Of the two people I was glad to see blobbed, one was a sleazy dude up at some make-out point with a girl. He’s trying to Cosby her shit up something awful with booze he mixed up from his portable bar in the trunk of his car. He had given her a ring, I guess to prove that she’s the one — but back in the trunk we see he has a box full of them. A lady in the audience then yelled “Get him, Blob!” and we all laughed. Then after he finally got blobbed, the same lady then yelled “Let that be a lesson to you boys!” and we all laughed and applauded.

The other was the head scientist from some shady government agency; whereas the Blob in the original was from outer space, this one was a bio-weapon to use against our enemies, like the Commies. This movie was made in the 80s when that was some real shit, being all Rocky vs. Drago with Russia. I’m sure that bit then got dated in the 90s when we were all right with the Reds. But now here we are in 2016 and we’re back at sub-zero Cold War levels with Putin Country and so the shit is back to being timely again. Haha.

The second film was Devil Fetus, a Hong Kong joint from 1983. I don’t know who was responsible for this film, but this dude or chick must be the Chinese Larry Cohen, because it shares the similarity with his work in that it feels like the screenplay wasn’t written with a beginning/middle/end plot outline but just made up as it goes along. Only this Chinese Larry Cohen dials it up to 11.

The movie begins with a lady purchasing a small sculpture of a cock & balls at an auction and she takes it home and while her hubby is out of town, she starts fondling it and somewhere along the way the Creature from the Black Lagoon with a white wig is fucking her and Blade Runner music is playing during it. The husband then comes home and freaks out, taking the sculpture and smashes it, which immediately results in his face falling apart and so he throws himself out the window.

They have a funeral, she comes home, her husband’s voice scares her, a cat jumps out and she falls over the stair rail and now there’s another funeral. At the funeral, a priest uses his x-ray vision to look through the coffin and sees that the dead lady’s belly is growing and growing and growing until a small demonic baby — a Devil Fetus, if you will — bursts out but the priest puts the kibosh on that shit and everything is OK again at the funeral.

He tells the dead girl’s sister that in order to help the dead lady and her dead husband move on to reincarnation, she has to keep some seals (the good luck kind, not the sea creatures, or Heidi Klum’s ex-husband squared) over the pictures of the deceased or the ashes or whatever for ten years and DO NOT DISTURB THEM don’t mess with the seals whatever you do.

Almost ten years later, guess what in the fuck ends up happening to those seals?

OK, you probably guessed that, but you won’t guess anything else that happens in this fucking nut-pourri of a motion picture. Some girl who is either a cousin or something in the family ends up fucking with the seals and then it all goes down, man. The family dog goes nuts and has to get samurai sword’d, then the evil inside the dog inhabits one of the other family members and then, oh I don’t know how I’m gonna do this. I’d be telling you the whole movie.

What I’ll do is just give away elements like possessed cars, party guests eating maggot cake, one dude goes full trans for one scene and jerking off until the film suddenly cuts to a can of Coke being popped open with full foamy discharge, old wise priests with their special effects laden wizardry, a room that closes in and crushes some dude like a watermelon, keeping dead dogs under beds (then eating them), keeping dead girls under beds (then eating them), music taken from John Carpenter, Brian Eno, and Vangelis, Evil Dead style shenanigans, all of that shit.

It’s a wacky movie, and I will acknowledge that my lack of knowledge when it comes to ghostly spiritual myths that are part of Chinese culture could be part of what makes Devil Fetus so WTF and off-putting. But if I had to guess, maybe Hong Kong audiences were probably kind of like Whaaaa? about the events in this film too, this film that doesn’t even care to really explain things or even give us a legitimate way to end it (the movie pretty much just stops). This print came from the American Genre Film Archive, and it had those ultra-dodgy subtitles in both English and Mandarin that you see in films like these, so maybe the movie would make more sense had the dialogue not been handed off to someone with a vague handling of the language.

Of course they gave us free pizza after the gross-out we just witnessed. An Aero volunteer in a Mike Love costume kept announcing to everybody as we stepped out into the lobby, “soylent pizza, get your soylent pizza”. My friend and I went outside to eat our slices (and our pizza) and when we came back ten or so minutes later, Mike Love was still doing the “soylent pizza” call — only now his voice was damn near gone. This guy, you could never doubt his commitment to Sparkle Motion, that’s for sure. During the first five minutes of the following film, Mike Love stepped into the theater and silently offered the rest of the leftover pizza to people in the aisles and you bet your ass me and my buddy grabbed a couple more.

Between films, we had more Moninger madness with him bringing out the various Horrorthon characters, kind of like live-action stage interstitials before the video interstitials. He (and Randy and Corn Gorn and everybody else) was giving away so much candy and movies, it was beautiful. He’d even give away stuff on his way out the auditorium before the film would start, handing stuff over to people on the aisles. This might be the best all-nighter I ever attended, for the most selfish reasons of all — 5 of them, to be exact. By the end of the night, I ended up with Blu-rays of Gravity (3D), American Sniper, Walk the Line, Enemy of the State, and Lost Soul: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley’s Island of Dr. Moreau. We all wanted those movies and candy (from Randy!) so much, but Grant noticed it was a lot harder to give away copies of Dallas Buyer’s Club, which is an excellent film with an excellent performance but c’mon, it’s not exactly anybody’s idea of a fun time, unless that somebody is Mr. AIDS.

The third film of the night was 1982’s The Entity, directed by Sidney J. Furie and starring Barbara Hershey. The film begins with a typical day in the life of single mom Carla Moran, as she works by day, goes to night school by, uh, night, and then comes home to see that neither one of her three kids took the time to wash the goddamn dishes. It’s tough enough to deal with that shit but on this particular night things go from typical to Jesus Christ Please Let This Be A One Time Thing when she is violated by an unseen force — an Entity, if you will.

Unfortunately this does not turn out to be a one time thing as Moran is repeatedly attacked by this thing, anywhere and anytime, at home, in a car, at a friend’s place, even in front of her family. They’re rough, these scenes, as they should be. Up front, I’m telling you this was the toughest film of the night for me to watch. For one thing, I’ve always been squeamish about rape scenes in films — unless it’s happening to a guy.

I’m kidding, of course. That shit is just too real for me, I mean, you grow up playing cops and robbers and being killed and shit like that but who the fuck plays at getting raped? Does that make sense? I’m not desensitized to stuff like that, I guess. It might as well be the real thing to me. I don’t know, I can’t really explain it. Maybe I need a psychiatrist to help me out here.

Speaking of which, that’s what Carla does by going to see the late great Ron Silver’s character, Dr. Ron Silver (can’t remember his character’s name). No, she doesn’t go to see why I’ll fast-forward a rape scene in a movie, she goes to see if what is happening to her some kind of psychological issue or what. In between the horror of the rape scenes is a lot of talk, but the talk — at least for me — had my full attention. What also had me at full attention was the way Ron Silver spoke in the film; if you’ve ever seen Silver speak in a film, he has what I guess is best described by Jamie Foxx as “juicy mouth” or actually you know what? It’s the opposite of that. Silver always seems to have a dry mouth in need of moisture, that’s what it sounds like after every sentence. He needs a glass of water or a nice wet kiss to fix that dryness, so how about it, Ron I’M YOUR BOYFRIEND NOW WRRRRRAAAAAA

The writing by Frank De Felitta (based on his book) is of course top notch, but I have to say that it’s the acting that really takes this to the next level beyond mere exploitation (a murky water which the movie does occasionally dip its toes into). Hershey, above all, is fucking phenomenal. She totally sells it as an ordinary woman (albeit one who looks like Barbara Hershey) being forced into an extraordinary situation, and having to maintain her sanity while fearing the possibility that she is losing it, or worse, already lost it or even worse than that — this unexplained phenomena is actually happening to her. Because at least if she’s crazy, she knows she can go get professional help. But how do you explain fucking ghost rape?! There are Oscar-worthy clips throughout her performance, but my favorite is probably after her friend witnesses one of the attacks, telling her she saw it, and the way Hershey keeps responding with “You saw it” and she is so exhausted in every way possible it kinda broke my heart while feeling hope for her situation.

It was like watching a really good play at times, but Furie and cinematographer Stephen H. Burum cinema the shit out of it with their chosen anamorphic 2.35:1 aspect ratio. I’m talking split-diopters and lots of canted angles; I bet this movie was the canted angle champion until Battlefield Earth came in and man-animal’d the title away. And there are scenes that are shot in a manner that I fear is becoming more and more rare; there’s a post-coital conversation between Carla and her boyfriend (played by the late great Alex Rocco, who had worked previously with Hershey on The Stunt Man) and the whole conversation is covered from one angle favoring Carla, slightly behind the boyfriend to where we only see his side profile at most (and even then slightly out-of-focus). Nowadays most movies are shot for the edit; just cover it from every angle and figure it out in post. But this looks like one of those flicks that actually had every angle figured out before hand for maximum effect. In the case of this scene, our attention should be on what Carla is saying and her reactions as well.

I remember reading somewhere that Hershey felt that movie would’ve been better if it focused more on the stuff between Carla and her family and her doctor, which I kinda get. I mean, the last third of the film basically turns into the second half of Poltergeist, which is weird because this movie came out the same year as Poltergeist despite being shot two years before Poltergeist. Poltergeist poltergeist poltergeist ULTRAAA COMBOOOOOOO!!!!! But yeah, as much as I dug the last third, I actually found myself more interested in the more everyday less fantastical stuff (or as ‘less fantastical’ as fucking ghost rape can be considered).

The film plays the “based on a true story” card at the very end, which I’ll have to look up to see how true they kept things, or if it’s like many films based on a true story, in that in both the film and the real events one of the characters had a cup of coffee once. But who knows, it could be all true. And if so, that’s some frightening shit. As is the fact that in one scene in a meeting room full of doctors, they had them all smoking the fuck out of cigarettes, pipes, and cigars as if it were Good Night, and Good Luck. in that motherfucker.

Aside from the applause, I think the ultimate compliment this movie got from the audience was early on when someone in the audience tried to be Mr. Funny Riffer — twice! — and got shushed the fuck up. That shit didn’t happen with any of the other films that night, in fact, it was kinda encouraged, but this was something else and it certainly wasn’t the kind of film to make “funny” comments at the screen.

The fourth film of the night was 1988’s Phantasm II, the sequel to the waking nightmare that was Phantasm, a film about who the fuck knows what except there was a scary tall old man, jawas, and a flying sphere that would bore into its prey’s skull and drain all the blood out. I had seen it before at a midnight show at the New Beverly Cinema and rambled about it on this here blog. My thoughts on it remain the same, so you can just go to this link to read them in full or you can read this here excerpt and get the gist:

The first film felt and looked like a bad dream, an atmosphere that is kinda missing in this one (which feels more like a straight horror flick), but in exchange we have bigger set-pieces, gooier special effects, and most importantly, nudity. I don’t remember anything particularly new added to this film aside from a new type of Flying Killer Ball and some explosions; it’s like Coscarelli was loathe to answer any questions in the first place, if anything, the ratio of Questions Answered to Questions Raised is probably like 1 to 10. He’s more interested in adding more to the characters of Mike and Reggie than he is in explaining to you why the Tall Man is doing what he’s doing.


But I guess that’s part of the fun with this movie; it still manages to entertain you with some pretty awesome shit while remaining coy about What The Fuck Is Going On in this motherfucker. While I missed the nightmare logic of the first film, I still think this sequel is an improvement in overall Good Times. In addition to the creepy and unnerving settings, it’s got some cool action moments and it’s a genuinely scary film at times. I can see re-watching this one anytime I felt like it, while the first one you gotta be in the proper mood to watch (I watched part one around 4 or 5 in the morning and it felt perfect for that time period).

The fifth film of the night was 1981’s college slasher Hell Night, and whaddya know? I saw this one at the New Beverly Cinema (for their all-nighter) and rambled about it as well! Here’s the link and here’s an excerpt:

Anyway, this was one of the better 80’s slasher films, with some creepy moments that I’d rather not spoil…the first half was better than the second half, because it was tighter (there are some scenes involving characters walking through the dark estate that crosses the line from Deliberately Paced to All Right Already, Get To The Fuckin’ Point) and because the characters start pulling stupid Because It Was Written That Way In The Script bullshit during the second half.

And I still feel that way; the second half made me very impatient with how draggy it felt. I figured the filmmakers were padding it out to make a decent running time but the shit’s already 101 minutes. That’s more than enough time.

So on to the sixth film, Frank Henenlotter’s Brain Damage from 1988, a film about a dude who hooks up with a talking creature that will inject him with a most euphoric liquid in exchange for human brains, and whoa, you’ll never guess in a million years what I’m about to tell you — I saw this at another all-nighter — the same one featuring Hell Night! just like this all-nighter — AND I rambled about it too! Link and excerpt:

Keep in mind that I haven’t seen Henenlotter’s latest, Bad Biology, when I say this: Brain Damage is his fuckin’ masterpiece…this flick is pretty awesome in that it’s both gleefully nasty/trashy exploitation and About Something, kinda like old-school Romero; this is really a story about a man throwing his life away on drugs, because the results are the same: he misses out on work, alienates his loved ones, commits serious crime — all in the name of getting another hit from his supplier. Except the drug isn’t heroin or crack being pushed by Superfly, it’s some Windex-looking shit that you inject through back of your neck and the supplier is a talking slimy phallus.


This flick is like a Henenlotter best-of; gross-out gags, gore, comedy, drama, way-too-real seedy New York locations. But it also has a couple things that represent some of his not-so-best qualities, like wide-eyed motherfuckers screaming in only the worst, most shrill manner possible; the first five minutes or so were very tough to take, since they feature some old lady screaming and screaming and screaming in that horrific combo of anguish & annoying (if I only knew what was in store for me in about another couple of hours). So I’d probably watch the first five minutes on Mute, next time. Otherwise, damn good flick.

I actually took the opportunity at the beginning of this film to go move my car closer to the theater, sparing me all that old-people-screaming in the first five minutes or so. This time I wasn’t as, uh, high on this movie this time; maybe it just doesn’t hold up to repeat viewing but compared to how I felt about it last time, I found it to be good but not *that* good, and I’ve noticed that Henenlotter’s films (still haven’t seen Bad Biology) can be kinda depressing for me, even when they’re funny. Your mileage will most likely vary. I think I’d call Frankenhooker his masterpiece nowadays, if only because I don’t feel so down at the end of that one.

Before the last film, Grant came up on stage one last time to give out the remainder of the loot and to give away another action figure. He asked for people in the audience who had a credit score higher than 1000 in their Horrorthon trading card (I forgot which particular one) to come up on stage. I went up along with a bunch of others but I didn’t make the cut, instead it came down to a little boy who cut in front of me in line. I shouldn’t have let that slide, because he was a White kid and is probably going to be used to that privilege times 100, now that we have President Elect Trrrruuuuuuuussoij0f394jpowierjfpwe9fj5poiwerjfow[eijrgpowierWEARETHETHINGSTHATWEREANDSHALLBEAGAINDEADBYDAWNDEADBYDAWNDEADBYDAAAAAAAAAAAAAAWWWNNNNNNNNNNN………………………………………

…………………………..

………..

Whoa, hold up. I got it. I’m good. Don’t know what happened there, I saw my eyes starting to roll up in the reflection of this monitor and then my vision went profundo rosso all of a sudden. Almost caught slipping there, sorry. Anyway, he was just a little kid and it’s not like I could pick a fight with him, he’d fucked my shit up big time. But yeah, it came down to a kid and this other dude, and they were tied, but Grant gave it to the dude because the kid already won before and the dude had so many packs of cards, so many! 3 packs cost 10 bucks and I think he had somewhere close to 100 bucks in cards, by the look of that fat stack. Even Grant was kind of flabbergasted by this and knew that he just had to give it to this guy, and so he did.

The seventh and final film of the night/morning was actually supposed to be played earlier but they were having problems setting up the projection, which I think was a DCP or Blu-ray for this one: the 1980 film Humanoids from the Deep, or as it was called on this print, Monster. It stars Doug McClure (who was part of the inspiration for the Troy McClure character on the “The Simpsons” but who I know best as the Mayor from the sitcom “Out of the World”) and Vic Morrow (who was part of the inspiration for irresponsible directors who are into decapitation) and it takes place in a small fishing burg somewhere off the coast of Northern California.

The salmon population is dwindling and that’s making the fishermen get even more upset and drunk, and it might have to do with Big Salmon having moved into town. “Nay nay!” says the Big Corporation, because they are going to open a new cannery that is going to help with business for everybody, they’re gonna have more salmon than you can shake a broken thermometer at! Most of these ol’ beer-drinking salts are super jazzed for this while the Native American community (which apparently is comprised of one Latino actor) is not at all down for it. The success rate for the Natives in stopping this cannery is about par with the success rate of the Natives trying to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Which is to say: Beat it, woo woo feathers. Manifest destiny all day, every day. We took it, it’s ours. #MAGA

When you let Big Salmon do their thing unencumbered by the laws of science or human decency, you end up with these motherfuckers going beyond GMO-ing the salmon and straight into some Tampering In God’s Lo Mein territory. Now there be Mutant Fishmen here, roaming the shore, killing all the dogs (NOOO!), killing the men (eh…) and raping the women (here we go with this shit again). Between this film, The Entity, Devil Fetus, and White Cosby in The Blob, the theme of this year’s Horrorthon appeared to be RAPEITY RAPE RAPE. But I guess, horror and rape go together like peanut butter and jelly, or Polanski and youth.

The story goes that the director of this film, Barbara Peeters, turned in her cut of the film to producer Roger Corman, who thought it needed to be jazzed up. She did not agree, so he got another director to film new moments with gore and forced sex without the original cast & crew’s knowledge, so that must’ve been a very interesting premiere for them.

At 80 minutes including closing credits, it’s not a long film but I kinda wanted it to end the whole time I was watching it. Maybe I prefer the older-school versions of these fuckin’ things, like Horror of Party Beach, or maybe I like the good versions of these things, like Creature from the Black Lagoon. Or maybe I just didn’t care for the whiplash storytelling going back and forth between Rapefish and No Blood for Salmon, where I actually was more into the drama between the pro-cannery fishermen and the anti-cannery fishermen.

Like, that shit was really interesting, how the asshole fishermen don’t like the Injun ’cause he’s getting in the way of their money but You Just Fucking Know there’s also some racial waters boiling in the kettle of their actions. But then we cut away from that and I’d have to see two stupid young people canoodling before some slimy fuck comes in and paws the stupid young man’s face off before inseminating the stupid young lady with stupid mutant fishman jism and I guess I’m supposed to be like FUCK YEAH AWESOME OH BRO MY DICK IS SO FUCKING HARD BRO I don’t know. Kind of the point of the movie, right? Watching sea creatures kill and rape? But try convincing me of that back while I was watching it.

Or maybe I’m just *done* with these kind of movies.

Or maybe I was just tired. I mean, I *was* chowing down my free M&M’s and downing my free Monster Energy Drink at this point.

I know I’m in the minority with this movie (you’ll always be the minority, beaner), which appears to be well-reviewed and received (Leonard Maltin gave it three stars in his book and even appears in the DVD/Blu-ray supplements interviewing Corman, yet he’ll give a dismissive snarky two-sentence BOMB review to David Cronenberg’s faaaaaaaaaarrrrr superior The Brood, the schmuck) I’ll admit that sometimes I’ll get in these temporary moods where I become an Angry Old Man and even reason can’t enter this dojo, and for all I know one day I’ll catch this again at another all-nighter or somewhere else and I’ll be happily chomping on my popcorn open-mouthed like Michael Jackson in the “Thriller” video while digging the ever-lasting fuck out of this movie. Who knows when that will be, if that will ever be.

But as of now, all I’ll think about — if I think about this film — is that around 8:45 – 9:15am that Sunday morning, during the climax where the fishmen attack the village salmon festival, ripping dude’s heads off and grabbing pussy celebrity-style while the biggest asshole of the film (Vic Morrow’s character) actually gets fuckin’ redeemed while other characters I liked got Humanoid’d or exploded and the whole time the same fucking female scream keeps going on in the background on a fucking loop — all that was going through my mind was I Don’t Care.

At least the score by a young James Horner (RIP) was pretty good in that James Horner way. I think I even heard a Blaster Beam here and there.

It was about 9:30am when it was all over. There seemed to be more people sticking around compared to previous Horrorthons, and yet it didn’t seem as messy in the aisles or between seat rows — at least around our area. Some of the people leaving got free vinyl albums of something, but the rest of us ran out towards our vehicles because it was starting to rain and you know how deadly *that* stuff is. But yeah, man, this year’s Horrorthon was Good Times, just like the other Horrorthons. I look forward to number 12 in 2017 — and now I’ve jinxed it, I’m sure. Here’s an album of pics of that night on the Aero Facebook page.

My friend and I went then decided to try out a place called Bru’s Wiffle for breakfast and we both got the fried chicken and waffles. They were OK. You know what else is OK? My phone. In order to finance my Vegas jaunts and Hollywood Bowl visits, something had to get the fuzzy end of the financial lollipop stick and that ended up being my cell phone. So, enjoy this subpar mid-00s quality video of selected Horrorthon giveaway madness. And may God have mercy on us all non-rich/non-white/non-straight people because now we have to deal with Presidennnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnttttttttttttttttowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwjfffffffffffffff,laksfj;aljf;oiajs;oigheroi;jjjjjjjjjjjaklsaaaareferj;askldfjalksjd;lakmcas;lka;sdjfasd

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WWWWWWWEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEHHHHHHHHHHHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUas;dklll!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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faith in people

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https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B-YUeiF_tEvNYzl4Zy1DUUhqM0k/preview

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It’s like doing extra credit homework for a teacher who didn’t ask for it, but if it makes you feel better, fine, go ahead

Posted in All Night Horror Show, Beyond the Door, Brain Damage, Creature from the Black Lagoon 3D, douchebag, Hell Night, Horror Planet (aka Inseminoid), movie marathon, ramblings of a loser, The Pit and the Pendulum (1991) on October 4, 2011 by efcontentment

At first, it was looking kinda iffy whether or not there was going to be another one of these deals; I’m talking about the all-night horror movie marathon held every October at the coated-with-awesome New Beverly Cinema for the past three years; the fruits of the laborious Mr. Phil Blankenship, who is no longer with the New Beverly. Because of this, there was a very good chance there wouldn’t be another all-nighter. But according to Brian J. Quinn, he of the Grindhouse Film Festival, one particular New Bev’r championed the idea of continuing this shindig, and of course, I can’t remember the name of the guy, but he was serving popcorn for most of the night and not looking particularly happy about it — and neither would you, if you had the long line of munchies-seeking cinephiles who wanted their layered-butter popcorn and wanted it NOW. But hey, them’s the breaks, kid — and besides, I need my butter in the middle and top of the popcorn, unbuttered popcorn’s for squids.

So it came down at the last minute; Quinn and company took the reins and went to work booking flicks for the all-nighter. Then Saturday night came, and there they were, and there I was, at the New Beverly Cinema for the 4th Annual All Night Horror Show (which everyone still insists on calling Horrorthon, probably because Twitter only gives you 140 characters). As usual, many showed up with pillows & blankets, ensuring them hours of movie-missing sleep, and if that doesn’t work, the cooler full of Beck’s beer would surely do the job (those guys were gone by movie #4).

Quinn hosted the evening, and he gave props to Mr. Blankenship and Stressed Popcorn Guy Who’s Name I Forgot. He also told us about how the trailers were provided by yet another person whose name I can’t remember and Quentin Tarantino. He asked that we silence our cell phones and try to refrain from sharing our various bodily functions and odors with the rest of the audience. He then talked about how all the movies we were going to watch were picked because they were Good Times in different respects and that we shouldn’t get into MST3k mode and act all superior to them from the very first frame and to that I say A-Fuckin-Men, brother. Not every movie has to be viewed through Everything Is Terrible! lenses, man, you gotta give ’em a chance.

After the trailer reel, the first film of the evening began; Beyond the Door, about some sweaty hobo in a suit (it’s the scraggly beard and oily hair that leads me to that judgment) who kept some chick from giving birth in a room full of candles, and I guess that pissed off the narrator who also happens to be Satan, but to make things worse, Satan is some piece-of-shit Ashton Kutcher type who takes pleasure in punking Hobo In A Suit by making him and his car take a flying leap off a fuckin’ cliff and then freeze-framing the motherfucker in mid-air, like I Own You Bitch. Also, a woman gets possessed.

Yeah man, Hayley Mills’ sister gets possessed by the same punk-ass Satan that is punking Hobo’s punk-ass. Because she lives in such a fucked-up little household, it takes a while for the family to notice something is up; the daughter is obsessed with the novelization of Love Story, carrying fuckin’ bags and suitcases filled with them and she also swears a lot, like me (I was a sailor once). The young son, he’s all right; he’s cute but it looks like he’s addicted to Campbell’s Green Pea soup because he’s got cans of it everywhere, he even sips that shit through a straw. As for the dad, he’s kind of a dim motherfucker with an Arkansas-garage-worker mustache who is totally disrespectful to his kids, calling them “idiot” and leaving them alone in the apartment with a Devil-possessed woman even though Hobo Without A Shotgun just fuckin’ told him not to.

Here’s a flick filled with scenes involving Moms spewing out various chunky/viscous liquids from her mouth, doing 360’s with her head, and having her face end up looking more and more possessed-looking — and yet the most disturbing moment involved her giving her son a way-too-long kiss on the mouth. Jesus Christ, woman; if you’re gonna go Full Predator and rob the cradle, at least pick a cradle outside your own house.

This was my first time watching the flick and I dug it. It’s got that weird, dreamy style to it that some of the better Italian ripoffs feature (in addition to the usual staples of porno-ish music and WTF moments); it’s like the director knew that just because he was making an Exorcist ripoff, doesn’t mean he has to go through the motions, so why not have some fun with it? He uses freeze frames, repeated loops of certain moments, and then there’s that unnerving deal where the soundtrack drops the background ambience and all you can hear is the characters’ near-whispering their dialogue with what I swear sounded like a slight echo-y effect to it. Anyway, this flick is like Skynet in that it’s self-aware; like that whole deal with the green pea soup cans, that’s both genuine eye-tie weirdness AND a wink to the audience, acknowledging the inspiration for this joint. Also, on occasion there are these weird bronchial fart-noises that I assume is the Devil breathing, and that’s scary, because I don’t even know what the fuck a bronchial fart is.

A raffle was held afterwards and a couple lucky ducks wound up taking home VHS tapes from Johnny Ramone’s personal collection, then we watched Bugs Bunny own that furry monster, then we watched one of these fake-ass interviews between this chick named Dorothy and Bela Muthafuckin’ Lugosi; it takes place in his backyard and this was back when you can fool a person into thinking that this interview was done all in one real-time take, even though there are cuts and various setups involved. I don’t know how much of Lugosi’s stuff was scripted, or if his answers were actually off-the-cuff, but he comes off like a pretty decent dude.

Keep in mind that he was flying high off his success from Dracula — he hadn’t reached his Ed Wood nadir yet — so maybe that’s why he seems rather pleasant and charming here. He talks about becoming an American, and keeping up with modern slang — “the cat’s whiskers” was a new one to me — and how he rarely attends Hollywood parties, leaving more booze for F. Scott Fitzgerald and Nathanael West as a result, I bet. He’s got this awesome mix of Distant and Interest towards his female interviewer, and I bet you that was his game, and this stud probably got his share of flapper tang back in his day as a result of said game. Or maybe not, because it ends with him scaring the shit of poor Dorothy, and what does he do as a result of her running away all Keystone Kops/Benny Hill-style from him? He laughs. Bela Lugosi rules.

We then put on our 3D glasses for the second film of the evening, Creature from the Black Lagoon, about a creature from the black lagoon that goes around killing South Americans in the Amazon, so it’s not like anyone gives a shit, but once he gets the hots for a White chick, it’s fuckin’ on, because it’s 1954 and you’re sure as shit not getting away with interspecies dating, let alone interracial. Do you see this, Creature? It means Not Welcome!

The main dude is named David and he’s like a marine biologist or something; his raza friend Dr. Maia shows up with a Black Lagoon Creature fossil, the sight of which causes David to get a Major Discovery Hard-on, so he, Dr. Raza, David’s hot White girl, and the douchebag money-man financing this endeavor are off to the Amazon in search of ways to get themselves killed in the name of Science.

I’m looking at David’s chick Kay and thinking Wow, what a dish! I mean, she’s very pretty and her body is very nice to look at, because it’s obvious that she eats real food — in moderation, of course — but I’m sure she’ll occasionally splurge on an extra helping or a dessert, because we only live once, right? Good for her, I say. Actresses today, they gotta look like they dig on the heroin, leaving impressionable girls with little-to-no self-esteem to starve themselves because they think they’re fat. Man, I want to know who to blame: Hollywood? The media? Us? I don’t know, but whoever it is, they’re getting a punch in the fuckin’ throat when I find the fuck out.

So yeah, this Creature; I guess back in the day, the sight of this scaly motherfucker was browning many an audience member’s seat, but now it’s different. Now we look at it and go Oh How Quaint. Maybe back then, this guy was considered an evil murderous monster, but 2011 Me watches this and feels bad for the dude. He’s just living his life in the Amazon, and I don’t think he’s a man-eater, he probably munches on the occasional piranha or two — good, they deserve it, the jerks — and he’s lonely out there, real lonely. He can be shy too, only popping his hand out of the water very slowly every once in a while, before letting his reticent nature win over and down goes his hand, back into the murky deep.

Sure, every once in a while some native passes by, but those are usually dudes and he’s not down with that kind of loving — it’s Creature & Eve, not Creature & Steve. But then here comes this hot White girl with a Black girl’s ass, merrily swimming in those savage waters, and I bet you the Creature probably didn’t even know he had genitals until they started taking over his brains at that moment. And like most men, the possibility of pussy made the guy lose anything resembling Rational Thought and now it’s Killing Time — and why not, I mean, all those other dudes are potential competition, so off he goes to take them out, as the shutter falls, and we see it all in 3D.

I caught this flick before at the Nuart and thought it was cool; my opinion remained the same during this viewing. The 3D was nice, nicer than you’d expect from a film from that period; I’ve seen shittier 3D in today’s movies. It was pretty impressive; the Creature looks like he’s coming out of the screen, it looks like the diver is pointing his spear gun at us, and the audience members look like they’re blocking our view as they keep going back and forth between their seats and the lobby. The only problem I had with this overall fun time at the movies is that the pacing is also very 1950’s, but I guess back then people were fine with what felt like endless swimming footage, because it’s in three dimensions, daddy-o! This and Anaconda would make a pretty cool double-bill. Either that or digitally insert Jon Voight into this flick.

The third film of the evening was Hell Night, starring Linda Blair and one of the Van Pattens, the one who isn’t an Emmy-award winning television director or the father from Eight Is Enough. This slasher joint’s about your average 80’s-era drunk college students, and a group of them have to go into this old abandoned mansion and stay the night in order to get into one of those fraternities/sororities. Of course, this isn’t just some regular mansion, there had to have been something fucked up that happened there, and sure enough, the owner was some guy with the worst sperm in the world who eventually snapped and retroactively aborted his four Special Needs children, before doing the same to this wife and himself. Supposedly, no one’s been inside the estate ever since, which I guess would explain the hundreds of lit candles all around the house.

It’s two chicks and two dudes; one couple is likable (she’s a decent girl who worked as a mechanic in father’s garage all through high school; he’s only pledging this fraternity because of his father) and the other couple represents everything about your standard 80’s teen dead meat (she’s easy and carries booze & drugs on her person; he’s a happy-go-lucky surfer who’s probably this dude’s uncle). Meanwhile, the main frat asshole and his asshole friends have set up various pranky douchebaggeries like speakers and projectors all around the estate in order to scare the shit out of the pledges. Ah, but what they don’t know is that there is Something Out There, and sure enough, heads are getting chopped or 180’d, and various stabbing weapons are being used to weapon stab through much alcohol-pickled flesh.

I guess I can call this a re-see; back in the good ol’ days, my sister and cousin (two separate people) brought this movie home on VHS, so I remember vague glimpses and flashes of moments from this movie, but I might as well have been watching this for the first time at the New Bev. Anyway, this was one of the better 80’s slasher films, with some creepy moments that I’d rather not spoil, but fuck it, I’ll let one go: there’s a scene where British Druggy Whore is in bed, sleeping the sleep of the heavily Quaalude’d, and the camera slowly approaches her, closer and closer until her body almost fills the frame — suddenly, the movie cuts to a wide shot of the bedroom, revealing the fuckin’ killer standing right over her. That was pretty tight, yo.

The first half was better than the second half, because it was tighter (there are some scenes involving characters walking through the dark estate that crosses the line from Deliberately Paced to All Right Already, Get To The Fuckin’ Point) and because the characters start pulling stupid Because It Was Written That Way In The Script bullshit during the second half. There’s a scene in a police station that was just frustrating the fuck out of me, and not in a good way; I wasn’t buying anything that was happening there, and while I get the idea of The Horror Of Nobody Helping You, I wasn’t buying the way that shit was being presented. That shit felt too fuckin’ convenient, which might have worked in the writer’s next produced screenplay, muthafuckin’ Tango & Cash, but not with this joint.

Mr. Quinn had mentioned how the fourth film — the secret film — was a secret because even he didn’t know what movie he was going to get. The last minute planning of this caper led to him requesting various prints of movies and hoping that they were available on such short notice, and this one didn’t come through until about two or three days before the event. Nevertheless, it was a film he dug and it had a minor theatrical release at the time: Frank Henenlotter’s Brain Damage.

Some dude named Brian (ah, you clever Henenlotter, you) wakes up one night in his apartment and finds blood on his bedsheets. Unfortunately for him, the blood didn’t come from a severed horse head but from his own body. Turns out this freaky penile creature named Aylmer has chosen Brian as his new host, but Aylmer’s not a total leech, he’s gonna hook up our boy with some sweet, sweet blue juice that causes the recipient to take a ride on a river with tangerine trees and marmalade skies. Yup, it’s the greatest drug ever — and the only cost for further trips down Euphoria Lane is human brains for Aylmer to eat. It’s always something, isn’t it?

At first, Brian is too fuckin’ lifted to notice that during his nightly trip-out sessions on the streets of New York, Aylmer’s attacking people and burrowing into their heads to eat their brains (and gain their knowledge?) — although in one case, a poor hooker-type (it’s never confirmed, but to quote Dave Chappelle, she’s definitely wearing the uniform) gets hers sucked out while she’s trying to suck off Brian. Now, the print we watched was the cut R-rated version, so for those who watched it with me that night at the New Bev, this is what we missed out on from the director’s cut (It’s totally NSFW; also, I was amused by the related videos, not to mention occupied with them afterwards):

Keep in mind that I haven’t seen Henenlotter’s latest, Bad Biology, when I say this: Brain Damage is his fuckin’ masterpiece. Yeah, I said that shit. As much as I dug his first film Basket Case, I think this one is even better. Sure, there’s a slight deja-vu’ish feel to the proceedings — both are about young men and the murderous creatures they carry with them, and how that shit is fucking up their lives — but you know, Toy Story 2 and Toy Story 3 are damn near the same fuckin’ movie and that didn’t keep the latter from straight-up owning the already damn-good former. So there.

But yeah, man, this flick is pretty awesome in that it’s both gleefully nasty/trashy exploitation and About Something, kinda like old-school Romero; this is really a story about a man throwing his life away on drugs, because the results are the same: he misses out on work, alienates his loved ones, commits serious crime — all in the name of getting another hit from his supplier. Except the drug isn’t heroin or crack being pushed by Superfly, it’s some Windex-looking shit that you inject through back of your neck and the supplier is a talking slimy phallus.

There’s a great shot where Brian runs off to a back alley for some Aylmer Juice-taking privacy, and in the foreground, there’s a homeless dude with a bottle of booze — and the part that kills me is that Homeless Dude is crying, in between taking swigs of alcohol, like he knows he’s in a world of shit and the bottle was probably what led him there, but goddammit, he needs it: the fuckin’ bottle owns him. So in effect, you have Brian in the background, representing the beginning stages of addiction, and then you have the homeless guy in the foreground representing the final stage of addiction — total absolute physical/emotional dependency.

This flick is like a Henenlotter best-of; gross-out gags, gore, comedy, drama, way-too-real seedy New York locations. But it also has a couple things that represent some of his not-so-best qualities, like wide-eyed motherfuckers screaming in only the worst, most shrill manner possible; the first five minutes or so were very tough to take, since they feature some old lady screaming and screaming and screaming in that horrific combo of anguish & annoying (if I only knew what was in store for me in about another couple of hours). So I’d probably watch the first five minutes on Mute, next time. Otherwise, damn good flick.

Our fifth flick was another joint that didn’t get much theatrical play, aside from film festivals, but I think that was because this was mostly likely always intended for Straight-to-Video (the way-too-cropped top and bottom of the image in this print was a giveaway), since it’s a Full Moon production: The Pit and the Pendulum, directed by Stuart Gordon, he of the angry face and friendly attitude. I believe this was producer Charles Band’s personal print, but I could be mistaken.

Yeah, it’s another adaptation of that underage-cousin-loving emo’s short story, taking place in Spain during the Inquisition, only here it’s obvious that everybody was expecting that shit, on account of these robed assholes being here for a while already. Man, it sucks to live in 1492 Spain, because Torquemada and his boys are in full effect, jacking up everybody they think is not down with the Pope; they’re climbing in your windows, they’re snatching your people up, trying to torture them, so ya’ll need to hide your kids, hide your wife, and hide your husband — because they’re torturing everybody out here. It’s not as hilarious as when Mel Brooks was doing that shit, and if you’re too sensitive to watch yet another witch-burning, kid-whipping auto-da-fe in the public square, you get accused of being in league with the Dark Arts.

There’s this chick Maria, she kinda resembles a Spanish Jessica Harper, and she’s just trying to make some bread by selling bread with her husband. But once she steps in to stop some poor kid from getting whipped (apparently, he’s being punished for crying at the sight of his mother being strangled to death, what a pussy), that’s it, man; her beauty causes Torquemada to get all stiff under his robes, and because he has no game, he does the next best thing — he accuses her of being a witch and has her arrested. Then the fun really begins.

Torquemada is played by national treasure Lance Henriksen, and goddamn, if there was such a thing as a Straight-to-Video acting category in the Oscars, then this motherfucker would’ve won in 1991 for his performance in this movie. He is that fucking good here. He’s always working, but I wish Hollywood would hook him up with more big-budget work, because he’s surely got the goods and they deserve to be flaunted to a wider audience. At first, his Torquemada comes off like he’s totally hardcore about his beliefs, but once he sees this chick, goddamn. He figures it’s nothing a little flogging from one of his boys can’t fix, and perhaps that will beat the horniness out of him — but the cock wants what the cock wants, I guess, and slowly he starts to lose his shit over her.

I liked how most of his crew only appear to be as true to the cause and are really just hypocrites enjoying the ability to torture-porn people with impunity; two of them are played by Gordon players Jeffrey Combs and Tom Towles, and right there you have both sides of the spectrum — Combs is totally by the book about stuff, and while he’s all for torture, that’s just because that’s what the rules say to do; Towles, on the other hand, is totally getting off on the perks of the job, such as being able to inspect every inch of a hot chick’s naked body for Devil marks. There’s also this asshole fat dude who would be completely hateable if he wasn’t so goddamn hilarious at times.

Pretty much everyone here is tops in the acting department — the guy from Dinner Rush and Scarface who’s also in all of Darren Aronofsky’s joints; Happy Gilmore’s grandmother; the guy who plays Latin Jessica Harper’s husband; Stuart Gordon’s wife (once again dying a violent death); and my man, muthafuckin’ Oliver Reed, playing a cardinal from Rome who talk-a like-a dis, like-a he’s-a fuckin-a Mario from-a da video game. It’s a real stretch for him, playing a guy who drinks a lot (sure enough, it’s Amontillado he’s quaffing on).

I rented this on VHS back when I was 13 years old, because it’s not like my parents knew what the fuck I was renting with my allowance money, and I sure as fuck wasn’t gonna watch in front of them, but aside from Absolute Nakedness, I didn’t get much out of this flick at the time. But upon second viewing, old-ass Me thinks this flick was pretty goddamn awesome. It’s just so tense and involving; you boo-hiss the villains, cheer the hero, and beat off to the damsel-in-distress — Good Times, in other words. There’s also a lot of humor that I missed out on the first time, because you know, I was 13 and just wanted to see tits and blood. Since then, I’ve matured and now expect much more from my cinema viewings — tits, blood, AND humor.

The last film of the evening (well, morning at this point), was a British joint called Horror Planet — although a better title for it would be Dumb Motherfuckers Planet, because Jesus Tapdancing Christ, these are the dumbest motherfuckers in the world, dumber than me, even. In fact, I think that’s why they’re on another planet — they were too fuckin’ stupid to live on Earth, so they got their asses kicked out of this planet and were told to go colonize another one and don’t even think of writing back. This was originally titled Inseminoid, but that really just refers to one part of the movie — a movie that is comprised of individuals succeeding in accomplishing clusterfuck after clusterfuck after clusterfuck.

Officially, they’re on this strange planet to do the archeological dig thing, and they can’t even fuckin’ do that right; one poor woman gets her foot caught through an open floor panel of the airlock entrance while out in the deadly-freezing caves, and because her spacesuit is fucking up and she’s only got limited time before freezing to death, she’s told by one of the guys inside the base that she must perform some quick wire-patching shit to fix the fuckin’ heater or defroster or whatever the fuck was gonna keep her alive. So what does she do? She ignores homeboy, takes her helmet off, exposing her face to the Killer Wind Chill, shoves an oxygen tube in her mouth, and takes what looks like Ramon the gardener’s hedge trimmers and slowly slices through her leg like it was Thanksgiving up in this bitch. When her homies finally get to her, they find her dead with an embarrassed look on her frozen face — as she should be.

Then this other broad ends up getting raped by an alien — what the fuck is it with these sci-fi movies that involve women getting fucked by monsters, man?! — which is represented as a hallucination in what appears to be the same set from the opening of Beyond the Door (minus the candles), where she finds the team’s doctor making some weird English pervy face as he injects her with his syringe, making me think that’s why he became a doctor, to prick all the chicks with his phallic symbol. Then some big clear tube is shoved into her Christmas pudding and what appears to be tennis balls floating in Campbell’s Green Pea soup is shot up in there. At that point, I wondered whether I should go to Norms or IHOP for breakfast after the show.

This results in our girl acting all wacky and doing goofball things like slicing up Steve Martin’s ex-wife Jack the Ripper-style, because she’s a hater, I guess. Maybe she’s doing this because now she’s down with the aliens — because once you go xenomorph, you never go back. So our girl goes around, killing her former co-workers by stabbing ’em, slicing ’em, burning ’em — then she’ll rip open their innards and eat them because one good turn deserves another, I don’t know. But I don’t feel bad for any of the victims, because they’re stupid, unlikable, and stupid. I know I used “stupid” twice, but I can’t stress that shit enough.

Actually, death is a relief for these dumb assholes because it means they no longer have to hear Crazy Brit Chick scream anymore. Yeah man, didn’t I tell you? She loves to scream. Absolutely lives for it. She screams for everything — she screams when she’s in pain, she screams when she’s angry, she screams when she’s losing, she screams when she’s winning. Scream scream scream. The only thing I got from all that screaming — aside from the urge to jump through the screen Last Action Hero/Purple Rose of Cairo-style and strangle her — was a good look at her chompers, and based on all the fillings in her teeth, perhaps it’s a good thing that she’s chowing down on human meat, because she’s certainly had enough sugar in her life, evidently.

What we have here is some symbolic/metaphor/whatever shit going on here; this chick got knocked up and now everybody has to pay. Everybody has to put up with her mood swings; one moment she’s begging you to help her because she’s in so much pain, and the next she’s gleefully (and literally) tearing you a new one. Eventually she cannons those alien kids from her cooch — yay, more screaming! — and the terror doesn’t stop because the dummy in charge of all the other dummies on this planet, Mark, also happens to be her man. And I guess the sight of her man hanging out with the two surviving dummy chicks makes this new mother feel all unattractive and unwanted, so now Jealousy has entered the picture. The last third of the film consists of her doing more of her Stalking Killer thing while constantly screaming MAAAAAAARRRRRRK! like the worst housewife in the world. Over and over and over she’s screaming that shit.

I caught Horror Planet (aka Inseminoid) last year on Netflix Instant and didn’t think much of it then, but the masochist in me decided to give it another day in court. Besides, the Netflix version was pan & scan and this was a nice-looking print on the big screen. By the way, the ending is longer on the Netflix version; there’s an extra scene of some dudes showing up on the planet a few months later — it was cut out of the theatrical print, yet whoever was in charge of that didn’t bother cutting the dudes out of the end credits montage, leaving quite a few in the audience confused, like Who the fuck are the new guys? It’s a lightning-paced film that is never boring, but goddamn, that screaming really puts a damper on the whole experience. Which is too bad, because the character of Crazy Brit Chick is otherwise lots of fun to watch; I loved how she’ll suddenly make evil faces and wide-eyed expressions whenever going into Exterminate Mode, but I cannot stress it enough how those whiny-screams made that shit unbearable. Horror Planet, Inseminoid, Dumb Motherfuckers Planet — whatever, it all sounded like Marriage to me.

So the film ended, Mr. Quinn thanked the remaining All Nighters, and off we went. In the end, I decided on Norms. Fin.

Check out Cathie’s blog about the event. She says more with less, unlike me, who deserves to be visited by Crazy Brit Chick in his sleep.