Showing posts with label interaction. Show all posts
Showing posts with label interaction. Show all posts

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Neo-Noir Erotic Thriller Madonna Watch Party Watch: Body of Evidence (1993)




When I was 17 years old, and a curious kid, and back when movies had all sorts of content in them - I saw all sorts of stuff on the big screen.  In general, I think it was actually a good thing.  I learned about the adult world, how sex looked under professional lighting, and that my ex-girlfriend was right about that nice lady in the Crying Game the second she showed up in the film.

And since the video for Lucky Star, I'd also thought that nice lady rolling around on the floor seemed like a pretty good idea.  By early 1993, the videos for Vogue and Express Yourself had done nothing to dissuade me of this opinion, let alone when my pal, Phil, taped the HBO concert special of Blonde Ambition for me. 

In 1992, Rob, Scott and I had gone to see a sold-out showing of Basic Instinct on opening night (I thought it was "meh" - and I have 10,000 words on what this did to the notion of noir for a decade), and at the time we did not anticipate that Hollywood would see gold in them thar hills and spend the early 90's trying to recapture the magic in a series of erotic thrillers.  

Simultaneously, Madonna had found she quite enjoyed freaking out America's moms via the Like A Prayer controversy (which seems both inappropriate and stupid rewatching the video now), and decided she would now say the word "sex" a lot, very much upsetting Tipper Gore.  She liked it so much, she made a picture book about how much she liked the word, and in a field trip to the Houston Public Library downtown, we got one of the people who was already 18 to get it for us to all look at at the reference desk.  And, man, were the librarians cheesed.

Friday, February 26, 2021

Watch Party Friday: Body of Evidence (1993)



WARNING:  Jamie tells me I should say up front - there will be bewbs.  And butts.  And sexy times.  So, watch at your own risk, I guess.   

I saw this in the theater opening weekend in 1993.  It came out on the heels of the blockbuster Basic Instinct and around the time Madonna decided she was going to shock America's parents by saying the word "sex" a lot.  So much, in fact, she put the word on the cover of her goofy book.*

Day:  02/26/2021
Time:  8:30 Central
Format:  Amazon Watch Party

Link here for magic time

Anyway, the movie stars one person I was thrilled to see naked (Madonna) and one person I was less excited about seeing in the altogether (Willem Defoe).  And a pre-stardom Julianne Moore, Joe Mantegna (not naked), Anne Archer (always a good thing, but not naked), and Jurgen Prochnow (who seems like he'd be game for being naked, but I don't remember).

If memory serves, it's a warmed over Basic Instinct, only Madonna seems like she's trying so hard it kind of kills the mood.


*which you could not check out of the Houston Public Library, but could request to see.  And BOY were those librarians pissed when we found an 18-year-old in our group who DID ask to see it.  And, man, was that book boring AF.


Saturday, February 13, 2021

Forget to Mention It Watch: Return of the Swamp Thing (1989)




Watched:  01/28/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  Second?
Decade:  1980's
Director:  Does it matter?

We did this one as a watch party, and I often forget to write up watch party movies.  But, yeah, this movie isn't very good.

I...  I don't really think it bears much discussion.

Friday, February 12, 2021

Friday Watch Party: Split Second (1991)


Well, this looks like something I cannot believe I didn't see in 1991 when I was the exact audience for the movie.  But there you are.

It's the edgy future of 2008!  Rutger Hauer!  Kim Cattrall in a sassy brunette bob!  a monster!   A ridiculous gun!  Let's get 90's mid-budget actiony! 

Day: 02/12/2021
Time:  8:30 Central
Where:  Amazon Prime Watch Party

Link here to watch


Sunday, February 7, 2021

Watch Party Regret Watch: Mannequin 2 - On the Move (1991)




Watched:  02/05/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing: First
Decade:  1990's
Director:  Stewart Raffill

This movie wasn't very good.  Jenifer agrees.

These days, if a movie does well, studios understand that if they're going to make a sequel to a popular-ish film, the *best* thing to do is to try to go bigger and better.  Give the audience a reason to get them to come back.  However, Mannequin 2: On the Move (1991) is very much of the era where the reason for a sequel to exist was so that as many pilot fish left over from the first film can gorge themselves on the good will of the first movie and not care at all if the sequel will be worth the film it's printed on.

Pretty much nobody is back from the first movie - and I don't just mean Andrew McCarthy and Kim Cattrall.  The actual producers, up and down, aren't the same.  The director is new.  You have the same store as the location, and you have Meshach Taylor back as "Hollywood".  That's it.  So no one cares, no one is trying, and the end product may be less than ideal.

Anyway, there MUST have been a script, because there are costumes and whatnot, so someone knew what they'd need for shooting.  But it sure doesn't feel like there's a script - it feels like people dicking around in front of the camera.  Except for Kristi Swanson, who is actually at least trying here (despite a bizarre wig that seems inspired by a Rick James groupie's hair).  And, yeah, Meshach Taylor, but he was kind of dicking around in the first movie, too.

But there's only small bits in the 90 minute run time that actually reach the level of "funny bit" or "joke that might make one crack a smile".  The rest is weird mugging no one asked for and maybe one of the lest charismatic leads I can remember in anything that wasn't one of those movies with people fighting in a sci-fi wasteland.  And the weird thing is:  normally that guy is fine.  He's been in lots of stuff - stuff you've seen.  But here - he's working with nothing, and I guess that was a problem.

I don't regret making other people watch the movie.  At least we all suffered together.


Friday, February 5, 2021

Friday Night Amazon Party: Mannequin 2 - On the Move

 


You. Will. Know. Pain.

Day:    02/05/2021
Time:  8:30 PM Central
Source:  Amazon Watch Party


I've never seen this.  It's a 13% critics score on RT.  Metacritic doesn't even register it.

It's the second in a series of movies that asks "hey, would you @#$% a store mannequin?" and tells the tale of yet another fellow who absolutely would.

Friday, January 29, 2021

Friday Watch Party: Return of the Swamp Thing (1989)




Day:  Friday - 01/29/2021
Time:  8:30 Central
Where:  Amazon Prime

 
I've only seen this once. Back in high school, I think my sophomore year.

My mom was having some sort of gathering of her friends in our living room, so my dad and I got banished to the upstairs TV room (affectionately known as "Slippy Village"). My dad and I are a real braintrust when it comes to picking movies, and so it came to be that we settled on Return of the Swamp Thing. I recall we had to keep turning it down because of lots and lots and lots of machinegun fire, and we did not wish to upset my mom and her pals.

I also vaguely remember having to also explain to The Admiral, "no, Heather Locklear is a real actor.  No, seriously.".  

Anyway, let's all enjoy a talking salad and his friend.


 

Saturday, January 23, 2021

Angry Animal Watch: Day of the Animals (1977)




Watched:  01/22/2020
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1970's
Director:  William Girdler

I think the *weirdest* thing about this movie is that it genuinely feels like famed filmmaker James Nguyen of Birdemic fame may have taken inspiration from Day of the Animals (1977) for his 2010 opus.   The second weirdest thing is seeing Leslie Nielsen in what was likely one of his last dramatic roles before drifting into his particular brand of comedy (of which I am a tremendous fan).  

This movie is not a sequel to, but is a spiritual partner to, 1976's Grizzly by the same director and both films feature Richard Jaeckel (a classic "oh, THAT guy" actor).   Both are about humans in the woods with animals out of control, I guess.  But the scale here is much larger/ more hilarious.

Our plot:  a bunch of people have signed up for a "survivor's" trek through the wilderness, but are all dressed like they're headed for the supermarket.  Over the course of a few days they'll rough it in the mountains of California, but reports are coming in that animals are acting funny.  We're introduced to our parade of stereotypes/ tropes, all of whom explain who they are as they come down the exposition line at the beginning.

Well, crazy thing, the ozone is bad something something, higher elevations, and the animals have become homicidal.  I mean, MORE homicidal.*  They particularly have it in for us slow-moving humans.   

Anyway - the movie is a bit of a mess, but has two major thrusts - 1) the escalating attacks on the walking person buffet, and 2) the interpersonal conflict that needs to arise in any of these films.  In our case, it's the increasingly irritable ad man played by Nielsen who winds up shirtless and baying at the moon before the film is over.

There's an indication that things have gone awry in the sleepy mountain town where our adventure begins, but the budget wasn't there to show too much of that, so all we get is the aftermath and the indication that SOMETHING happened.  But, yeah, there's a storyline for the Sheriff that just abruptly ends.  We sort of get a story about a little girl who is maybe the only survivor of... something?  And a deeply unsatisfying story about a pair of quarreling lovers that, against all common sense, leave the group after being attacked by a goddamn wolf.  And, man, why anyone would follow Leslie Nielsen's character in this movie is impossible to understand.  

And, yes, for reasons unexplained, the entire multi-day crew of people has no radio to call down in need of help.  Which seems like an oversight.

But the women's hair and make-up remains on point despite a half-a-week of running from cougars.

Anyway - what the movie does have are frequent animal attacks, and from a wide array of animals.  If you're like me and enjoy movies about people losing to the Wild Kingdom, and only a few escaping to look traumatized afterwards: I have a great movie for you.





*Animals tend to eat other animals and people if you give them a chance, really.  

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Friday Amazon Watch Party: Day of the Animals


Day:  01/22/2021
Time:  8:30 Central
Amazon Prime Streaming


I have never seen this.  It looks insane.  It is free to watch with Amazon Prime.  

And it is one of my favorite themes in movies:  animals turning on humans, to eat them, hopefully

JOIN US AS THE POODLES TURN ON MANKIND

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Pirate Watch: Against All Flags (1952)




Watched:  01/15/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  Unknown
Decade:  1950's
Director:   George Sherman

I have previously discussed this movie, including just last year.  

I believe that right up properly expresses my appreciation and major points I'd make about the movie.

Friday, January 15, 2021

Watch Party Friday: Against All Flags




Day:  Friday 01/15/2021
Time:  8:30 Central
Where:  Amazon Prime Streaming


Yar.  I'm making an executive decision, and watching pirates in glorious technicolor, we will be.  

Errol Flynn!  Anthony Quinn!  Maureen O'Hara becoming the living embodiment of "get you a girl who can do both"!

No swash shall go unbuckled!  No Roger shall go un-Jolly'd!  We're taking to the piratey seas!



Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Watch Party Watch: Evil Brain from Outer Space




Watched:  01/11/2021
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1960's 

So...  this movie starts off weird as hell, which I salute, then goes to goofy fun and TONS of action.  All of which I salute.  

Apparently this is the third in a series of Japanese kids movies about a fellow name of "Starman" who hails from "The Emerald Planet" and is here to save humanity from interplanetary threats via kicking ass and taking names.  He doesn't have a secret identity, even though he changes from his work-a-day coat and tie into a pretty terrific super ensemble that has a kicky antenna and "not a cape" attached to his arms for added flair.

The effects are better than you figure, the stunts out of this world, and while the movie makes little sense, at least it moves fast and is cool as hell.

Count me as a convert to this whole Starman scene.

Oh, and, yes, there's an evil brain.  from outer space.

 



Thursday, January 7, 2021

Friday Night Watch: The Running Man




Day:  Friday 01/08
Time:  8:30 PM
Where: Amazon Prime Streaming


So, back in the 1980's we were getting a lot of dystopian stories that were intended to be cautionary tales/ satires - and apparently nobody was paying attention and these movies were mostly derided by critics and not thought of as much more than crazy action movies.

Arguably, however, between the explosions and Arnie-grunting, movies like The Running Man were actually kind of trying to say something.  Anyway, when stuff like Survivor started hitting the air, my reaction was "well, this isn't good".

34 years from this film and twenty years on from "watch assholes win money", several seasons of Wipeout, American Ninja Warrior, COPS and Live PD later, it's not hard to imagine "Running Man" being the next big leap on Fox.  

So, let's give it a spin!

Friday, January 1, 2021

NEW YEAR WATCH PARTY - "Johnny Mnemonic" - because it takes place in 2021

 


Day:  01/01/2021
Time:  8:30 Central - Texas time, yo


So, I last saw this in the theater opening day, 11:30 AM show.  And it was very bad.  So bad, I had forgotten it co-stars Dina Meyer's terrific jawline.

she has great hair, too

Anyway - let's see what the citizens of the early 90's thought this year would look like!  

I've watched the first five minutes, and... uh, maybe they weren't so far off, is what I'm saying.

Only, far less Dina Meyer than we could have hoped for.

Thursday, December 31, 2020

Watch Party Watch: Guest in the House (1944)




Watched:  12/29/2020
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1940's
Director:  this one is confusing, but it's listed as follows on IMDB -  John BrahmJohn Cromwell...(uncredited) AndrĂ© De Toth...(uncredited) Lewis Milestone...(uncredited)

A dopey young doctor has fallen for his patient - a mental patient with a phobia of birds and a love of stirring shit (Anne Baxter).  Reasonably, he takes her to meet his idiotic family (minus one key player).  Unreasonably, he just f'ing leaves her with his idiotic family who just met her.  She gaslights the living shit out of everyone, including an 8 year old girl.

This movie features:
  • 3 great 1940's hairstyles on lovely women
  • 1 coocoo bananas psycho
  • Multiple dum-dums who clearly never met a Mean Girl
  • 1 Margaret Hamilton reminding you why it was hard for her to find work after Wizard of Oz seared her into your mind as a broom-riding funster
  • 1 wife who is wildly tolerant of 1 husband who is clearly banging his model no matter what the script tries to tell us
  • 1 man who has all the appeal of a soaked Ralph Bellamy that is, because filmed during wartime, the only man around sold to us as a real dream boat
  • 1 bird pining for the fjords
It is not a BAD movie, but it is also not hard to imagine how this movie could be better.  Also - how this sort of movie became a Lifetime movie, which would be called "Psycho Sister-In-Law".

However, this movie ALSO was released under the name "Satan in Skirts", which...  *chef's kiss*.



Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Friday Watch Party: (this one will cost you $2) "Lady in the Lake" from 1947



We figured out that if you rent it, we can all Watch Party it.  

This one WILL cost you $2 to participate.  I get none of the money.  

Day:  Friday - 12/17
Time:  8:30 PM Central


For this week's selection, I'm pulling out part of my personal Christmas canon - "Lady in the Lake".  
  • It's one of very few movies shot entirely from a single character's POV - essentially a videogame perspective, and done in 1947 with those giant cameras
  • Based on the novel by Raymond Chandler
  • Starring Signal Watch patron saint: Audrey Totter
  • It takes place on Christmas


What's not to like?


Monday, December 14, 2020

Watch Party Watch: Blood Beat (1983)

 


Watched:  12/11/2020
Format:  Amazon Watch Party
Viewing:  First
Decade:  1980's

Sometimes you watch a movie that is so off the rails, the batshit-ness gains its own power.  

I *think* I basically get what occurred during Bloodbeat (aka: Blood Beat) (1983), but I am willing to hear any interpretation of events which unfold in the film.  

A woman living in rural Wisconsin welcomes home her kids from college for Christmas.  Her son has brought his girlfriend, unannounced.  NBD, but the mom is also on the skids with her rednecky live-in boyfriend, and she's a painter and psychic.  Sort of.  And she gets a weird vibe from the girlfriend.  

The girlfriend also hits a psychic tripwire upon arriving, so... They all go hunting.  The girlfriend does not like.

A samurai ghost shows up when the girlfriend is sexually aroused.  And the sister seems unable to get an outfit together that makes any sense.

Anyway - the samurai ghost kills the neighbors who try to put too many things on a waterbed.  

There's a psychic battle, stock footage of nuclear blasts, and some light nudity.  It all feels like a one off issue of X-Men circa 1984.

I genuinely enjoyed this thing.  DIdn't know where it was going from moment to moment, and was both just confusing and concrete enough to stick with for the 90 minute runtime.  Not a technical marvel, but it had a certain je ne sais quoi.

Merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 5, 2020

Christmas Watch Party Watch: Christmas Twister/ F6 Twister (2012)




watched:  12/4/2020
format:  Amazon Watch Party
viewing:  first
decade: 2010's
director:  Peter Sullivan

Woof.

This is the most insanely lazy movie I've seen in a while.  Like, it's one of those where you're watching and thinking "literally nothing in this movie is how that thing works".  Not how tornadoes work, meteorology, news reporting, children, school, architecture, accents, clouds, pregnancy, smoke, basements, emergency situations, college, glasses or Ft. Worth.  Or, in fact, Christmas.  

Like - why?  How did this script get written?  Was it by someone amazingly dumb?  Were they kidding and no jokes landed?  I just don't get it.  I am not an expert in ANY of the topics above, but I do live on earth, and I have a sense of memory of events and observations.

I really can't spend energy on this.  They didn't.  

But I did like Deb, the news producer.  


Friday, December 4, 2020

Friday Watch Party: Christmas Twister/ F6 Twister

 


Well, apparently this WAS called "F6 Twister".  now it is CHRISTMAS TWISTER.

Looks Christmassy!  And it takes place in Texas, which I am sure will be depicted accurately and with respect.  And they're starting well, because that is not any recognizable Texas town in the poster.

  • Day:  12/4/2020
  • Time:  8:30 PM Texas Twister Time

Link here, y'all