Sunday, June 7, 2020
Format: Noir Alley on TCM on BluRay
Director: Edward Dmytryk
There's a lot to like in Cornered (1945), categorized here as Film Noir, but it's early in the movement and won't fit some people's ideas of the category. Still, a man driven half-mad by obsession ignores common sense in pursuit of his goals, his weaknesses clobber him repeatedly and near fatally, and there are possibly scheming women, even as he sets about solving a mystery. He's not a professional detective, but former Canadian RAF pilot Gerard (a not Canadian-polite Dick Powell) is recovering at the end of the war and learns that the French girl he met and married while hiding out in a village after being downed, was rounded up and killed by a Nazi collaborator.
Friday, June 5, 2020
Directors: Masaaki Tezuka, Ishirô Honda
In general, I like dragon flies. They remind me of lazy summer days and hanging out by the pool. Sometimes they even land on you when you're on a float, and that's kind of fun.
I do not care, however, for the Megaguirus, the giant flying SOB that is the villain of the piece in Godzilla vs Megaguirus (2000). Some of the monsters in Godzilla's rogues gallery are jerks - I'm looking at you, Ghidorah - but I straight up want to punch Megaguirus in its toothy face. I can find room in my heart for a space monster that is just doing its thing of domination via rampage, but Megaguirus brings nothing to the table, charm-wise, while also being a real pain.
All the worst things bugs do? Megaguirus is all about those things.
Wednesday, June 3, 2020
Format: Full Moon on Amazon Streaming
Director: Christian Drew Sidaris
In the wake of Hard Ticket to Hawaii, and with a 7-day trial of "Full Moon" available, I clicked around to see what else might be available from the Malibu Bay film collection. I stumbled upon The Dallas Connection (1994), another Bullets, Bombs and Babes movie from the studio.
Viewing: HA ha ha ha ha ha
Director: Mark L. Lester
For more ways to listen, click here.
SimonUK and Ryan discuss one of the finest films ever produced, the 1985 action opus, "Commando". Starring our beloved Arnie, the movie is an ideal of the action genre and narrative economy, while also featuring a fantastic cast, a possibly unintentionally weirdo bad-guy, a multi-talented Rae Dawn Chong, and Bill Duke as Bill Duke. We explore the incredible amount of goofy violence, idyllic child-rearing, unlikely explosions and what it means to strip down for a ride in a rubber raft.
Main Theme - James Horner, Commando OST
That time in 2014 when Simon and I met Mark L. Lester.
|Simon and Lester get photobombed by Not-Matrix|
|yours truly with the man himself|
Movie: The Beastmaster - 1982
Watch: Streaming on Amazon Prime
Day: Friday 06/05/2020
Time: 8:30 PM
Let's pause the movie here and wait on my signal:
|the name that means "quality?"|
Let's watch a movie about a grown man who walks around like it's okay to keep your ferrets in a duffel bag.* He also has a large cat and a bird. And Tanya Roberts! And many, many muscles.
It's a pre-"V" Mark Singer in a fantasy movie I haven't seen since high school. This is one that if you ask any dude between the ages of 52 and 40, they will swear this movie is good. But very few of us have watched it since, say, 1991. We don't really know.
In fact, aside from Mark Singer wearing a loin-cloth and constantly surrounding himself with animals (get a dog, Mark. Sheesh.), I don't really remember what the movie is even about. Probably an evil army that needs defeating.
Understandably, Conan: The Barbarian costs something to watch, so we're not doing it. I am also furious that Amazon has the balls to actually charge for:
- Red Sonja
- Conan: The Destroyer
- Clash of the Titans
and many, many other films that I would immediately watch if they were not $4. But Beastmaster is free to stream with Prime, so we're doing it.
Seriously, Red Sonja is the bomb.
*I mean, we all knew that guy in college, and he seemed colorful at first and then, eventually, you realized he just kind of sucked. Ferrets are great, and I loved them when my brother kept a couple of them, but they are not meant to go places with you so you can use them in place of a personality.
It started with protests in several cities in the wake of the George Floyd murder. George Floyd was a Black man apprehended by police under suspicion he'd floated a bogus $20 bill. For this, he was pinned to the ground by his throat beneath the knee of a man with a gun, who was supported by three of his fellow officers, as the suspect begged for air. This went on for almost 9 minutes.
The murder, and it was murder, occurred in broad daylight and on camera, carried out by a police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. A lot of people will try to call what occurred as a police officer pinned a man's neck to the ground with his knee for 9 minutes something else. Maybe they'll say it was unintentional (the video suggests otherwise), or just breaking some eggs to make an omelet. But in the era of cameras everywhere, the past fifteen years taught us how to pay attention to how people are policed and how police do their work. And how police officers do not police each other.
Sunday, May 31, 2020
|Dr. Freud is doing cartwheels in his grave|
Format: Amazon Streaming on "Full Moon"
Viewing: Second, as it turns out
Director: Andy Sidaris
As was said during the viewing, "this movie was actually printed on toxic masculinity". It's hard to remember how different things actually were in the 1980's, but different they were. Or, at least, certain held viewpoints were much more in the forefront of popular culture. And I'm not pretending like Hard Ticket to Hawaii (1987) was a popular movie or one most people alive during the era had seen, but it is emblematic of a certain kind of filmmaking that one could now hand over to a film-studies undergrad to get them to *really, really* understand the concept of "the male gaze" in movies.
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Movie: Hard Ticket to Hawaii
Available at: (for $4) Amazon Streaming
Day: Friday - 05/29/2020
Time: 8:30 PM Central/ 3:30 Hawaiian time
Get ready for action, adventure, tropical settings and - I'm assuming - nudity. It's Hard Ticket to Hawaii! It's a NSFW foray into a very particular blend of 1980's movie making, merging automatic weapons with vendetta-mad baddies and athletic-wear models in shorts.
I've never seen it - so you cannot hold me personally or legally responsible. And, yes, it will cost you $4 unless you sign up for "Full Moon" for a free trial, which... hey, maybe Full Moon is amazing? How am I to say?*
A foretaste of the feast to come:
*looking at their website, it LOOKS like it's amazing
Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Format: Amazon Streaming
Director: Carl Reiner
I watched this weeks ago and a stray comment from Jenifer reminded me I for to post about it, but I did watch it.
Now I'm too tired to write about it.
Monday, May 25, 2020
Format: Amazon Streaming
Director: I don't care
Back in the day, Hollywood settled upon a few formulaic items which generated endless, cheaply produced and ultimately very profitable movies. Some took place in college, some in high school. All were wildly horny, Rated-R and intended for a high school audience. One such formula developed that deeply owed a debt to Animal House wherein a group of misfit dudes got up to increasingly randy, episodic shenanigans in pursuit of good times and bad sex. The movies were an excuse to put boobs on screen, have young talent who couldn't act do Tex Avery character impersonations, lean into misogynistic and often racist stereotypes and somehow never quite be either as funny or sexy as you were figuring on.