Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Lee Fucking Marvin

The only man who would have been able to kill Chuck Norris.

In fact - he is the original Walker! On his shit list: backstabbing friends, people who owe him money, overpass pillars, venetian blinds, and unmade beds!

Trailer for the 1967 mindblower Point Blank.

Tough love, Corman style. 1955.

Mmm, Tasty...

Pop Art trailer for the sixties Italo-Western For The Taste Of Killing...

Monday, January 29, 2007

biology prevails...

It all comes full circle. Trudging through the snow on my way home from SOLANGE, this song popped into my headphones and I only then matched it with the band TV On The Radio. Then I stumble on the video via The Mystery of the Haunted Vampire. Eraserhead - werewolf - JD images for your Monday evening:

little minds warped by little giant monsters

I loved Ray Harryhausen stop motion monster flicks as a kid. Heck, in our house, "Harryhausen" was also used as a verb to describe a jerky, slow walk. As in, " Colin harryhausened across the room to get his Micronaut figures." Something like that...

Over at boingboing I found this posting of a Harryhausen index where you can scroll over a list of his monsters, click on the word, and up pops a little film clip of the beastie in action!
A friend saw him do a presentation recently and recounted Harryhausen talking about the demise of special effects today, because in every tooth paste or soft drink commerical you see computer animated characters. Doesn't quite make it "special" anymore, does it?

And the stop motion magic that he performed on Caroline Munroe's bosom in GOLDEN VOYAGE OF SINBAD was something else, wasn't it? (pic found over at Toykostomp)

Sunday, January 28, 2007

so long Solange!

The screening of WHAT HAVE THEY DONE TO SOLANGE was a hit last night. Small crowd, but not a bad print. I had never seen the film before and was surprised at how tight the plot actually was since I find most giallo disappoints in the end. Afterwards, myself and some fellow cinema deviants (including blog contrib Michael) joined up for some pitchers at talk of movie going experiences from days gone by. Again, if you are from Toronto, add some comments and then maybe join us for the next similar screening. I have heard rumblings of a PHANTASM screening at the Bloor in February, plus there are those Lon Chaney shows at the AGO...

Friday, January 26, 2007

downtown Toronto has the grindhouse experience this Saturday night

Mea Culpa. Been meaning to post this before, but better late than never. Just as a show of hands, how many Toronto people read this blog? If you do read, leave us a comment and give a shout out for the old "four-one-six"! Heck, we will even count hands for the "six-four-seven" and "nine-oh-five!"

If you are near the TDot area, on Saturday get down to the Royal cinema Saturday night to check out the screening of the 1972 giallo classic WHAT HAVE THEY DONE TO SOLANGE? aka "Cosa avete fatto a Solange?" aka "The School That Couldn't Scream". SOLANGE was directed by Massimo Dallamano who started out as a cinematographer whose work included Sergio Leone's A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS and FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE. He went on to direct several other thrillers before his untimely death in a car accident in 1976.
His cinematographer is Aristide Massaccesi (Joe D’Amato) who would go on to direct over 200 films including Euro-sleaze flicks such as MANUELLE IN AMERICA, TRAP THEM AND KILL THEM and ANTHROPOPHAGOUS before settling into Euro-porn until his passing in 1999. And to top it all, SOLANGE boasts a score by Ennio Morricone! This event is possible due to the hard efforts of a dedicated group of grindhouse fans who under the banner Vagrancy Films, have been holding screenings of gritty classics in London, Ontario including ZOMBIE, DEMONS, THE EVIL DEAD, CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST, DOLEMITE, THE BEYOND, CHAINED HEAT, DUEL OF THE IRON FISTS, FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN, THE CANDYSNATCHERS, MANIAC, THE BIG DOLL HOUSE and CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD, amongst others. Read their press release below and drop a comment if you want to meet up for a beer afterwards!

And as a bonus from the cinema staff here at Popcorn and Sticky Floors, check out this great SOLANGE photo wallpaper over from the fabulous guys at Cinema Strikes Back!

TORONTO.....You guys found away to dump your garbage in London so now Vagrancy is going to return the favor, only we won't be packing crushed beer cans or sour milk cartons...no no...We are bringing 5 Rusty Reels of Cinematic Trash so pure, so foul it will be the most excitement Toronto has seen since Paul Stanley crooned as the Phantom. We are talking about the Italia Giallo Classic WHAT HAVE THEY DONE TO SOLANGE ? aka THE SCHOOL THAT COULDN'T SCREAM. Considered the world over as one of the finest examples of Italian 70s Thrillers on the planet Solange is a perfect follow up to our previous adventure in your fair city. Please this time save the police until at least the third reel. As always stashed in our trunk beside the pound of cronic, and tall boys will be a bushel of vinegar delights from back in the day AKA Trailers. Nothing get's your blood pumping better than 2 minute intervals of shootings, stabbings, and boobies. If you are sensitive so such material you can always nestle on your sofa and watch the Golden Globes on your PVR.

A forbidden affair between a teacher and student at a girls' college sets the stage for cold-blooded murder. As the school is rocked by the twisted secrets unearthed by the police investigation, the killer strikes again and again. From veteran director/cinematographer/writer Massimo Dallamano (Black Veil For Lisa; Night Child), comes a stylish, violent murder mystery in the grand European genre known as the "giallo". Based on the work of acclaimed suspense novelist Edgar Wallace (King of Kong) and featuring a lush, haunting score by Ennio Morricone (The Untouchables; Cinema Paradiso).

What Have They Done to Solange features 70s Euro Legend Fabio Testi famous for his work in European Crime Classics such as The Smuggler and Heroin Busters. It also features Camille Keaton from I Spit on Your Grave making her feature film debut.

Vagrancy Films Presents
Saturday January 27 2007 9:30 PM
The Royal 608 College Street , Toronto Ontario
$10.00 at the Door -
Diabolical Trailer Reel Before the Main Feature

Thursday, January 25, 2007

If It Ain't Broke, Break It

The mind boggles...

The Paramount, the former flagship theatre of the Famous Players chain in Toronto, underwent a name change overnight this week, caught in the crossfire of synergy between the place's new owner, the Cineplex chain, and the Bank of Nova Scotia. Now when I make plans to go to a movie I'll have to say something like this: "Hey, let's go see Ghost Rider tonight - I'll meet you outside the Scotiabank at 9 o'clock."

Famous Players was part-owned by Viacom at the time the place opened (it was called 'Festival Hall' while it was being built, in a brazen attempt to court TIFF as it's future home, which didn't quite work out the way it was planned...) so it made semi-sense to name the place the Paramount, which at least is a historical movie theatre name in the United States. Renaming it the Scotiabank to me seems shameless and boring, though I'm sure the Cineplex/Scotiabank marketing departments could talk my ears off with why it's the perfect name for a movie theatre. Here's an attempt, from the story in the Toronto Star:

"We're rewarding customers for doing what they already do: go to movies and do their banking," said Scotiabank spokesperson John Doig.

The whole enterprise revolves around the idea that audiences would go to the movies to participate in a rewards program. I guess if you go to first-run movies a lot, it may now also be easier to secure a loan to support your habit.

To make matters worse, unlike the artists' rendition of the new facade seen above, here's what it looks like in real life - it might be temporary, but I have a feeling (a prayer, really) the whole idea is temporary...

But they shouldn't stop the rethinking there - maybe they can address the damn Klingon ship they have dangling over the dizzying escalators. Or maybe they can do something about what I call the epileptic's entrance (a nondescript, non-warp-speed elevator hiding to the left of the box office area). Speed that puppy up!

And get rid of the giant Rubik's Cube! And make it easier to find the concession stand! I got points to cash in!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

R.I.P. Liz Renay April 14 1926 - Jan 22 2007

I just read this elsewhere so I thought I'd post a poster or two of her quality work. She was a stripper and an actress and a felon. Desperate Living was her most famous film, I suppose, but I have a soft spot for The Thrill Killers, of course.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

the other Grindhouse...

Now whenever most people hear the word "Grindhouse", there thoughts will leap to the upcoming Tarantino project. Hopefully this new attention on this "genre" or rather "exhibition category" will spill over to this little fest that makes me want to make the pilgrimage to Portland. And if you like their posters, you can head over to ebay and make a bid on a set of them.

monster vs monster - she conquered the world...

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

are you in touch with your inner grindhouse?

Geez! Don't know where I am getting this mad blogging energy from. Plus I am blog rolling like crazy for over at Matt Dentler's blog I read this! Are you man enought to answer the call for entries for an amateur Grindhouse trailer?!
The South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Festival is putting out a call to filmmakers who would like to submit their best "grindhouse trailer," in honor of the April release from Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino, Grindhouse. A sample of the best submissions will be judged by Rodriguez himself, and presented during SXSW, on March 11, 2007.

Filmmakers have a deadline of February 12 to submit their "grindhouse trailer" (no longer than two minutes in length) to SXSW. The trailer should be made for a fictional feature-film, just like those being made by celebrity directors Eli Roth and Rob Zombie for Grindhouse. From those submissions, Rodriguez will determine the best of the bunch, and it will screen during a special presentation entitled "Robert Rodriguez's Grindhouse 101" on Sunday, March 11. During the presentation, Rodriguez will share stories and footage from the making of the upcoming Dimension Films release.

"We really want filmmakers to come up with something fun, scary, freaky, and out-of-this-world for the competition," says SXSW Festival Producer Matt Dentler. "This competition, like Grindhouse itself, is in the true spirit of innovative and fast-paced filmmaking."

Submissions must arrive no later than February 12, to: "SXSW Grindhouse Trailers," P.O. Box 4999, Austin, TX 78765. There is no application fee, but the trailers must be under two minutes in length, and made within the last 12 months. Films that have already been submitted to SXSW for 2007 consideration, are not eligible. The 2007 SXSW Film Festival occurs March 9-17 throughout downtown Austin, TX. Grindhouse will open nationwide on April 6, 2007.

your capenter is in my coscarelli!

Found over at The Horror Blog:

Green Beret goes berserk!

Aside from being present with Richard Bakalyan in 'The Delinquents', I thought I'd share a piece of Tom Laughlin before the name Billy Jack became a brand, as he rightly suggests. I guess the film was originally released with promotion aimed less toward pacifism and more to the sex and biker angle of the times. A Billy Jack by any other name would still smell as sweet though, I'm sure.

Also, as Don Henderson, Billy Jack did write and direct some nice fare for the drive-in crowd.

black stamp mosters

Over at the Greenbriar Picture Shows, John McElwee remembers the marketing campaign for the stateside release of the Hammer double bill, THE GORGON and THE CURSE OF THE MUMMY'S TOMB. To the first 10,000 people (an exhinbitors soaking wet dream) in line - FREE Black Stamps! He also goes through his latest R2 dvd purchases including ANNE OF THE INDIES and MERRILL'S MARAUDERS.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Excuse me Dr. Klahn, but what would Billy Jack do?

I just learned from Varietyasiaonline, actor and hapkido teacher Bong Soo Han has passed away on January 8th, 2007. Visit Grand Mater Bong Soo Han's International Hapkido Federation. G.M.B.S.H is proabably best known for his portayal of Dr. Klan in the Enter the Dragon send up in Kentuky Fried Movie. I wonder if he and Master Hwang In Shik ever got in a scrap...

As I was surfing for a posting on my other blog, I found www.billyjack.com.

And there I learned of a "New Exit Strategy for Iraq"

and also "Why Iraq worse than Vietnam". And then there is that old favourite, "The Bush Doctrine of World Domination Through Military Force". I also discovered that, "The new Billy Jack film will be the first film to launch a multi-faceted Moral, Political, Psychological & Spiritual Revolution restoring America to its core principle of being 'the Only Nation Founded for a Moral Purpose' and the core of all morality, 'Know thyself.'"

I found this interview with Tom Laughlin, who starred, co-wrote, produced and directed the Billy Jack series with his wife Delores Taylor (who also appeared in the movies) where actively crusades against domestic violence, lecturing at the University of Nebraska Lincoln and talks about the trouble with O.J. Simpson.

But on his website, you can see a recent video taped message where a thinner version of himself talks about his plan to make a NEW Billy Jack movie. And it will be: The only film investment to guarantee you, in a worst case basis, 100% of your investment plus a 12% interest per annum (or 25%) Return in 24 months… and a high probability, though no guarantee of a 300-400% return in three years. How? Because of three words – Presales, Controversy, and the Billy Jack Brand, with its huge following. He actually makes some interesting points:
“If a picture is intelligently controversial with an intense appeal to a large enough demographic base who strongly support the film, but is intelligent enough so that other demographic groups opposed to the picture must go see it, it will become a box office mega-hit, and it doesn’t matter what the subject is.

“A documentary is lucky to generate $5-$10 million at the US box office. Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11, an over-the-top screed that passionately preached to his choir, did an astonishing $125 million at the US box office alone. (Disney who put up $5 million to make the picture was so afraid of the controversy, they would not release it, and it would have never been released had Bob Weinstein from Miramax bought it from Disney and released it.)

“Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ, an extremely controversial religious film no major studio/distributor would handle, did over $360 million in the US alone, putting it in the top ten US films of all time, because it had an intense pre-existing following and generated enormous controversy- just like Billy Jack’s new film.

“Deep Throat is still the most profitable film of all time having been made for $5,000, and having grossed over $600 million. When it was first released it was just another pornographic film, and then the Catholic Church banned it, and the brilliant lawyer, Alan Dershowitz, inflamed the controversy into front page headlines when various cities and communities also banned it.

“Controversy - the correct kind – sells. And it doesn’t matter if it’s a political film, a religious film, or hard core pornography.

“Billy Jack’s Moral Revolution will be one of the most controversial films worldwide ever made, appealing strongly to a huge worldwide demographic base, and opposed just as strongly by the pro-war/pro-Bush base."
He also predicts that the opening weekend of the new Billy Jack with be in the top ten! Hmmm... if it worked for ROCKY BALBOA. What about the new RAMBO...? I wonder. This film will also be the most powerful way of setting America back on track! Wow! Clearly Tom has not mastered the art of the quick pitch, but I do admire him as he seems to be taking a page from the success of the LEFT BEHIND series and the art of the pre-sale. Is 21st century America ready to have "One Tin Soldier" cued up...?

If you are a qualified investor and would like more information or the investment packet, contact him!

Or if you are not up to producing his new movie, just buy one of his books:

meanwhile at the Alamo...

Oh The Alamo! That cinematic pleasure palace where you can swill a beer and gourge on good food AND watch wild flicks. But that is only if you live in Austin. Boo Hoo... The FREE Weird Wednesdays line-up for this month includes THE ABDUCTORS - "She's like an Asbury Park bricklayer's wet dream."

Or try out GET MEAN - "a Spaghetti Western where the cigarillo-chomping man with no name wanders around medieval Europe fighting fur-clad barbarians with broadswords".

Or sample Terror Thursday with THE INCUBUS ("this Canadian shockblast is the most misogynistic film in Terror Thursday history").

Oh well, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. Check out these swank Alamo tees that you can get at Mondo Tees...

does your grandfather smell like Ash?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

20th Century Babylon

The former movie theatres of the once vital city of Detroit.





You may remember this location from 8 Mile.


More arresting images at this vital website - The Fabulous Ruins of Detroit.

If I were at The Michigan Film Office, I'd be crossing my fingers that someone out there is planning to remake The Omega Man.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

A Celebration of Dick

I was first lured into the dubious hobby of collecting old film paper by thinking how cool it would be to have some posters from the stellar career of Richard Bakalyan and now, seven years on, it's too late to back out and I know too much to be let go.

I remember reading about him in an essay on juvenile delinquency movies in the ReSearch book, 'Incredibly Strange Films', and I instantly knew the face from his '60s and '70s roles in Disney fare alongside some guest appearances on the TV shows that I watched as a kid. Although I prefer my exploitation films in the truer vein of exploitation and all, I am not overly strict and I certainly can't help but love the fact that somebody looked at Richard and saw that he was the perfect street thug and his destiny was written in wet cement with the handle of a switchblade. Anyway, this is sort of where it started for me and so I'll start here now. Things will tend to get less respectable from now on with occasionsal breaks for decency.

Richard's first J.D. film in 1957. He's on the far right looking misanthropic, bored and unable to be told anything he doesn't already know, Pops. A Robert Altman film.

1958 and one of my all time favourite posters from the genre. The glory of American International Pictures.

1958 once more and Richard is holding the guy and smoking a cigarette with little concern towards his own health or the well-being of those around him.

Rounding out the same year with a stunning example of the artwork used for advertising what were essentially 'lesser' films aimed at teens and the older squares who feared them the most.

Dick rides shotgun.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

are you a jaws man or an orca man?

The year is 1978. A team of 12 year olds have decided to make a Super8 film of their own based on Jaws...

Sunday, January 07, 2007

and speaking of the French...

After doing my regular visit to The Groovy Age of Horror blog (your one stop for fumetti and sexy nurses in distress) I found a link to Zines, a new blog from France (?) filled with scans of French fantasy film mags with lots of saucy and sexy photos (NOT SAFE FOR WORK!) based around the films of Jesse Franco, Jean Rollin, Lucio Fulci, Christina Lindberg, Terrence Fisher and more! Visit often! These are only a few of the pics I found that are "safe". Safe is bad...

Saturday, January 06, 2007

morts-vivants et autres monstres

This dispatch comes from the esteemed Hal Kelly, editor Trash Compactor, of one of the best of the wave of deviant film zines that sprung out of Toronto in the late 80s and early 90s (including Kill Baby!, SubTerranea, Panicos, Tame, She and of course, Asian Eye).

In October of 1990 my wife Angela and I spent a week in Paris visiting friends. Close to where they lived at the time was Le Brady, a nice little theatre that specialized in showing horror films and had a suitably fantastic facade. It wasn't very big inside and it probably only sat a couple of hundred or so people. It was narrow, kind of like the old Rio on Yonge Street in Toronto, but with an aisle that went down the side of the house instead of the middle. It was like a regular theatre, clean and in good shape with no riff raft stalking the back rows, but it was still fun! As you can see from the pictures, at the time it was showing King of New York (mostly on the strength of Abel Ferra's splatter reputation after Driller Killer I
suppose) and Demons (this weblink loads up and plays the theme while you read the entry!). I also remember seeing Charles Band's Laser Blast there. Any anybody else ever been there? Does anybody know if Le Brady is still operating? Probably not...

Good news Hal! Looks like Le Brady is still up and running, but it appears to have lost its cool and creey facade. Proof can be found here and here.