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Monday, February 17, 2020

RIP LISA COMSHAW 1964-2020

The gorgeous red head has passed away.

Lisa Comshaw acted under several different names in her career including Toni Sinclair. Some of you may know he by that name.

She started in 1990 by appearing in many adult bondage films and then moved onto low budget exploitation films like "Bikini Med School" and "Island Girls".

Although her mainstream movie appearances were few, once you saw her you never forgot her. I am not sure what day she died, but it was complications from a stroke that brought an end to her life.

She was 55 which is way too young. He 56th birthday would have been tomorrow.

THE WITCH 1966 (SINISTER CINEMA)

Strange but interesting film.

Richard Johnson stars as Sergio Logan, a historian who answers an add in a local paper from someone looking for a historian to translate some erotic books.

Sergio arrives at an crumbling estate and finds that an elderly woman is the one that wants him to translate her late husbands books. Sergio recognizes her as a woman he has seen following him all over Rome.

At first Sergio refuses the job, but then he meets Auar (Rosanna Schiaffino) whom the elderly woman claims is her daughter. He falls for her very hard and finally accepts the job.

Needless to say, things get really bizarre from here. It turns out that both Aura and her mother have a dark secret and this secret slowly destroys Sergio.

This is a unique film that is somewhat of a cross between horror and art film, and that is an odd mixture. There are a lot of great camera shots inside the old estate and all of the actors do a great job.

Schiaffino is a stunning beauty and she is very convincing as the young woman who is more than she appears to be. This has to be one of the oddest films I have ever seen and there are a few times it slows down a lot, but if you stick with it the pay off is great.

I recommend this for any horror fan, but just don't expect the usual staples of a horror film and you'll be fine.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Hal Holbrook is 95, Jim Brown is 84, Lynne Moody is 74, Don Coscarelli is 66, and Yvonne Romain is 82.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

TALES FROM THE TRENCHES 2019 EPISODE 5 OUTSIDERS (SHOUT TV)

Get ready for some great action.

In this episode Roger talks about his many films dealing with people or groups who are on the outside of society.

It starts off with his film entitled "Cry Baby Killer" starring Jack Nicholson as a young man holding hostages in a drive in theater. I have seen this very rare film only once, and that was many years ago.

Corman then moves onto "Naked Angels" and then "Angels Hard As They Come". Both of these are very well made motorcycle gang films which came out by the hundreds after the success of Easy Rider.

"Black Oak Conspiracy", "Nashville Girl", "Bloodfist" and "The Spy Within" are all brought up and talked about. Corman has some very interesting stories to tell about "Bloodfist" and they are a hoot. The film was a huge hit however, and spawned about 5 sequels I believe.

This episode is a must for any Corman fan as it really touches on some of the great ideas this man had for making a successful film. A lot of fun indeed.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

UNCONQUERED BANDIT 1935 (SINISTER CINEMA)

Another fine Tom Tyler western from Reliable Pictures.

Tyler stars as Tom Morgan, a man whose father is killed by the nasty Cleyburn Gang.

He makes a deal with a wanted outlaw who is called "The Nighthawk" ( Slim Whitaker) to take his place. The plan is to steal everything Cleyburn (William Gould) owns and then marry his daughter and leave him with nothing.

Needless to say things don't really go as planned and the Nighthawk himself gets involved and plans a double cross.

This is a fast moving and very enjoyable "B" western that gets right down to business and then just keeps chugging along. Again, Tyler does a very credible job and gets into a lot of fist fights and gun play.

The rest of the cast for this great little western includes Lillian Gilmore, John Elliot and Earl Dwire. If you enjoy "B" westerns this is something you might want to check out.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Jane Seymour is 69, Sherry Jackson is 78, and Marie Liljedahl is 70.

Friday, February 14, 2020

THE MAGIC SERPENT 1966 (SINISTER CINEMA)

This is a wonderful Japanese fantasy adventure film.

The story is very simple. A benevolent ruler is killed by an evil enemy and he takes over the throne. A young prince is rescued from the hostile take over and is raised by an elderly magician.

The young man is raised to be a great fighter who them feels he must return to his home country and destroy the evil ruler. There is plenty of great sword play and it slowly build up to a clash between good and evil.

The evil ruler changes into a huge lizard monster and the prince changes into a giant frog and the monsters battle to the death along with a giant spider that is also on the side of good.

The widescreen presentation and the beautiful color are really spectacular and the only problem I have with the entire movie is the soundtrack. It is off by about a second or two and it kinda ruins the entire movie.

Dubbing has never been very good, but in this case it isn't the dubbing, it's the print. However, I have never seen a print of this film that isn't that way for some reason.

If you like great Japanese monster and fantasy movies, then this is the one for you.

It has been said that this was George Lucas' inspiration for his epic Star Wars movie back in 1977. It is indeed very similar. Recommended.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Meg Tilly is 60, Andrew Prine is 84, and Tami Donaldson is 39.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

RAMBLINGS...

Well I do have a bit of good news....for me and others I hope.

Last year Greg Luce at Sinister Cinema announced that 2019 might be the last year they would be in business.

That situation has now changed and they will continue operations thru Jan. 2021. Last year was a banner year for the company and Greg has decided to keep it running on a part time basis.

As you people who read this know, I review a ton of Sinister Cinema product and have always supported them. As a matter of fact I have been a supporter for 36 years now. There will be no more catalogs from them, but all customers will continue to receive flyers with new releases of both DVD movies and Armchair Fiction books.

I am pleased people have shown him such great support as running a mom and pop business in this day of corporate pinheads is very difficult. If you have never heard of this company I think you should look it up. The wide range of movies they have is mind boggling, and many titles are available no where else.

To Greg all I want to say is congrats and I will continue as always to be a fan and supporter of your excellent establishment.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Kim Novak is 87, George Segal is 86, Bo Svenson is 79, Barbara Shelley is 88, Ewa Aulin is 70, Roberta Vasquez is 57, and Lanisha Cole is 38.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

SATAN'S TRIANGLE 1975 (SINISTER CINEMA)

This scared the crap out of me when I was young and saw this on ABC.

Back when times were much better the networks actually made movies that scared and entertained people, and this is one of them.

Doug McClure stars as Lt. Haig, a Coast Guard man sent to rescue a small boat that has run into a sudden storm and sent out an SOS. He and Lt. Commander Pagolini (Michael Conrad) arrive at the boat and find a woman as the lone survivor on the boat.

Another storm kicks up and the rescue line snaps so Haig is left with the survivor on the boat. The woman named Eva (Kim Novak) recounts what happened for Haig and we are told in flashback what happened.

Haig puts all of the clues together and has a rational explanation for everything. He knows they are in an area known as "The Devil's Triangle" but does not believe in the Devil. He even manages to seduce Eva into bed on the boat and the next morning everything seems fine.

Several rescue ships have arrived and both Haig and Eva are hoisted onto a helicopter again piloted by Pagolini. All seems well until the rescue team radios back to the copter what they have found on the boat.

That is all I will tell you about the film because if you haven't seen it I don't want to spoil the great and terrific twist ending that scared me to death when I first saw it. It was the talk of the grade school I attended the following morning.

The TV movie works on many levels and it's perfect the way it pulls the rug out from under the viewer in the final 10 minutes, and the final shot with the closing credits still sticks in my mind.

The rest of the cast for this Danny Thomas production includes Alejandro Rey in a key performance as a priest, Jim Davis, Ed Lauter and Titos Vandis.

I wish movies were still like this, but alas, times have indeed changed. If you haven't seen this I recommend you do so. It was ranked #13 in my year end list of DVD releases. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Tina Louise is 86, Brandy Norwood is 41, Catherine Hickland is 64, and Becky LeBeau is 58.

Monday, February 10, 2020

TALES FROM THE TRENCHES 2019 EPISODE 4 REAL WORLD (SHOUT TV)

I found this episode to be the least interesting one so far, and that is strictly due to the subject matter.

This show looks at several of the films that Corman produced. He talks about the classic JD film "High School Bigshot" that stars John Ashley and then about a lot of films I have never seen simply because I have no interest.

"The Final Comedown", "Cockfighter", "Saint Jack", "Suburbia", "Love Letters" and "I Never Promised You A Rose Garden" are the rest of the movies discussed, and I do enjoy listening to Roger talk about any movie, but none of these really peaked my interest.

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not saying these are bad films by any means. It's interesting to discover how Corman got these films made and distributed especially since none of them were really big budgeted films.

All of the films made money, but some were not as successful as had been hoped for. Not that interesting to me, but still part of an excellent series that looks at one of the, if not THE most influential man to ever work in the film business.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Robert Wagner is 90, and Lisa Marie Varon is 49.