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Friday, April 29, 2016

WHISKEY MOUNTAIN 1976 (BALLYHOO)

A rare film from William Grefe.

Christopher George, Roberta Collins, Preston Pierce and Linda Borgeson are for people who decide to go looking for a hidden treasure of Muskets left by one of their grandfathers. They quickly find out that all is not what it is supposed to be.

They stop in a small town are and met with hostility and told that a place called Whiskey Mountain doesn't even exist. John Davis Chandler is very good as Rudy, a man who has stashed a huge amount of pot inside some of the caves the four people want to look it.

Needless to say, they stumble upon the pot and all hell breaks loose. They are taken captive, the women are raped and the men finally escape and head to town. Both men, when in town find a very uncooperative Sheriff, so they steal some guns and head into the mountains again to rescue their wives.

A bloody shoot out and a very downbeat ending cap off this wonderful film from William Grefe. I had seen this film years ago but the quality was horrendous so it is very nice to see Ballyhoo release a very watchable print as an extra on their excellent two disc set entitled "They Came From The Swamp: The Films Of William Grefe".

Highly recommended for any Grefe fan or action fan in general.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Uma Thurman is 46, Akira Takarada is 82, Cheri Caffaro is 71, and Ted V. Mikels is 87.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

RE-ANIMATOR 1985 (IMAGE)

One of the best horror films of it's kind.

Jeffrey Combs stars as Herbert West, a rather bizarre student who comes to Miskatonic University and brings with him a serum which he claims brings back the dead.

It does indeed work, but not the way it was intended. There is plenty of great black humor and gore and Combs plays the part of West perfectly. Barbara Crampton is the very sexy girlfriend of West's roommate Dan Cain, played by Bruce Abbott.

David Gale turns in an excellent performance as Dr. Carl Hill who hates West with a passion and soon finds himself a decapitated monster that is temporarily under Wests control. Gale makes the character of Hill mesh well with West and the two make a good comedy duo.

I am sure most of the people reading this have seen this movie and hopefully you like it as much as I do. The opening credits even steals the music from Psycho, but it's all so cool one does not care. If you haven't seen this film, then by all ,means get a copy and watch it and relish in the days when film makers could make totally over the top films and get away with it. There are several "over the top" scenes including one involving Hill and Crampton's character that could never be done today.

Highly Recommended!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO....

Jessica Alba is 35, Ann-Margret is 75, and Kari Wuhrer is 49.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

CASEY KASEM 1932-2014

As most people know that read this blog I was/am a huge fan of the greatest man in broadcasting history.

Casey inspired me to get into radio which I did for a short time and enjoyed the hell out of it. Growing up in Gardiner, Montana I listened to KCPX radio from Salt Lake City and always made sure to listen to Casey and American Top 40.

I will never forget the man who did so much for me and didn't even know me. I did hear him speak once and it was really something. A great man whose last days were tragic, but who has left behind a tremendous legacy. He would be 84 today.

I never listen to anything else anymore but AT 40 from the 70's and 80's. I own hundreds of those programs and treasure them.

His daughter Kerri is now a national spokesperson for elderly abuse and I follow her on FB and know she is a great fighter in the elderly rights movement.

Happy Birthday Casey, and when I die, I am going to finally have that long talk with you. AMERICAN TOP 40 OF THE 70'S AND 80'S FOREVER!!

CREATURES THE WORLD FORGOT 1971 (MILL CREEK)

A different prehistoric film from Hammer.

This is a strange little film about cave people and it has no dialogue except for grunting! The story is basically a simple one about two brothers who fight for control of a wondering tribe.

There are a few perils they encounter such as other hostile tribes and the usual angers encountered by snakes and such, but there are no dinosaurs or anything like that.

Gorgeous Julie Ege is the main attraction here and she looks her usual beautiful self. There is some nudity, but not much. If you like Hammer films and need to see every one, then I would say give it a try, otherwise, if you're a monster loving person you might not be too into this film.

Really odd, but not boring.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO......

Sheena Easton is 57.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

THEY CAME FROM THE SWAMP: THE FILMS OF WILLIAM GREFE 2016 (BALLYHOO)

This could very well be the release of the year!!

Grefe has always been of my favorite directors ever since I saw "Death Curse Of Tartu" on Nightmare Theater on KCPX TV in Salt Lake City during the 70's.

I didn't get to see a lot of his stuff until the VHS boom of the 80's, but I have never seen a film of his I didn't like. This excellent documentary from director Daniel Griffith brings us the definitive look at a most remarkable career and true giant of the horror and exploitation film, William Grefe.

Every film the man made is talked about here and some wonderful clips are shown as well as a wealth of information from many people including Fred Olen Ray, Frank Henenlotter, Doug Hobart (Tartu himself!!!!), Steve Alamio, Randy Grinter, H.G. Lewis, Grefe's daughter Melanie and many more.

Grefe provides some great stories about making these films and the viewer will never get bored listening to him talk. There are scenes from every film including "Death Curse Of Tartu", "Stanley", "Impulse", and my personal fave "Sting Of Death", plus many more.

Daniel Griffith knows how to make excellent movies about movie making and I have seen many great things from Ballyhoo, but this is the best so far! This is a two disc set with a signed insert by William Grefe! On disc one there is the main documentary of course as well as deleted scenes and another documentary entitled "The Crown Jewels" and great little piece about Crown International, one of the kings of independent film distribution.

One the second disc you get two short films by Grefe for Barcardi, one starring William Shatner, a Mako: Jaws Of Death promo reel and the feature film entitled "Whiskey Mountain" another great film from Grefe starring Christopher George and Roberta Collins.

One just cannot ask for anything more from Ballyhoo. A super top notch production and simply A MUST for any fan of regional horror. Thanks Ballyhoo for making this long time Grefe fan happy as a pig in mud with this 2 disc dream come true.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO.....

Claudine Auger is 75.

Monday, April 25, 2016

MADHOUSE 1974 (KINO) BLU-RAY

Vincent Price and Peter Cushing star in this well made terror tale.

Price stars as Paul Toombes a tormented actor whose best known character is "Dr. Death". After several bizarre murders he is sent to a mental hospital where he spends the next few years.

When he re-appears in the world he is contracted to stars as "Dr. Death" in a new TV show and more murders start. The first victim in this new string of killings in the very, very sexy Elizabeth Peters, played by the very, very sexy Linda Hayden.

Things continue to spiral downward as Toombes begins to doubt his own sanity. His friend Herbert Flay (Peter Cushing) tries to help Paul as much as he can.

This little thriller is a fun ride all the way thru. It is kind of a last hurrah of the AIP horror cycle with Price. It's always great to see Price and Cushing, but the added bonus of Robert Quarry, Linda Hayden, Adrienne Corri and Natasha Pyne make this an extra special treat for horror fans.

The Blu-ray disc from Kino is a very good improvement over other copies I have seen, and anything with Linda Hayden in HD is perfect with me.

THE STUFF 1985 (ARROW) BLU-RAY

One of my all time favorite films.

Larry Cohen brings this bizarre film about a killer dessert to life with the likes of Michael Moriarty as an industrial spy named Mo and Andrea Marcovicci as an advertising exec named Nicole who team together to find out the secret behind this new dessert craze sweeping the country.

Mo Rutherford is hired by several companies to find out what is behind the mass marketing craze of a new dessert called The Stuff.

The investigation leads him to alliances with Nicole and ad exec who created the sly marketing campaign for the product and with "Chocolate Chip" Charlie (Garrett Morris), a former business tycoon who now has nothing thanks to the incredible popularity of the Stuff.

The investigation leads to the discovery that the product is actually a destructive organism that is taking over everyone who consumes it.

There are some great scenes of the "stuffies" being killed in gruesome ways and a lot of great cameo appearances by the likes of Brooke Adams, Danny Aiello, Abe Vigoda and Clara Peller. The rest of the cast includes Patrick O' Neal, Paul Sorvino, Scott Bloom, and Alexander Scourby.

Everytime I watch this I get the feeling that there is a lot of footage missing, especially in the development of the relationship between Moriarty and Marovicci.

Well whatever the case, this film is very, very welcome to the world of Blu-ray thanks to Arrow. There are some pretty cool extras on the disc as well, and the print looks as good as I have ever seen this film.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO....

Talia Shire is 70, Gina Torres is 47, and Bjorn Ulvaeus is 71.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

POLICE SQUAD 1982 (CBS)

The funniest TV show of the 80's with the exception of Married With Children, of course.

Leslie Nielsen is Lt. Frank Drebin and Alan North is his partner Capt. Ed Hocken. This show was the template for the very popular "Naked Gun" movies.

The show only ran six episodes as ABC took if off the air because it was a show people actually had to watch, and that itself is a very sad commentary. There are so many sight gags and non sequiturs, a-la "Airplane" that one must pay attention, which most viewers cannot do.

The show is a great parody on the Quinn Martin productions of the 60's and 70's in which you have an announcer and a freeze frame ending to every show as well as a "guest star".

To fully explain this show would take pages so all I can say is if you're a fan of "Airplane" or the "Naked Gun" movies you'll love this show. I guarantee you have never seen anything like it and we all know there will never be anything like it again.

Long live Frank Drebin!!!!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO....

Michael Parks is 76, and Stacy Haiduk is 48.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

DIE! DIE! MY DARLING 1963 (MILL CREEK)

A very unusual and well made Hammer film.

Richard Matheson wrote the screenplay for this bizarre film starring Tallulah Bankhead as a grieving mother whose son has just been killed.

She invites her dead son's ex-girlfriend to her home. The girlfriend, Patricia, played by Stefanie Powers accepts the invitation and soon finds things aren't what they seem.

Mrs. Trefoile is completely crazy and a religious fanatic to boot. Very soon Patricia finds herself held prisoner in the huge house while Trefoile tries to cleanse her soul in order that her son may rest in peace.

There is a lot of abuse piled onto Pat as she tries time after time to escape. Her boyfriend starts to search for her, but will he find her before she is killed?

Bankhead is perfect in the role as the demented mother, and Powers bring just the right amount of innocence to her role as Pat. I hadn't seen this film for years. but now that Mill Creek has released it I finally remedied that situation.

If you get a chance, check this out. You won't be disappointed.