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Saturday, September 30, 2017

RIP MONTY HALL 1921-2017

Another part of my childhood has passed away.

No, Monty Hall never made any horror films, but he was on my TV as part of my childhood with the game show he emceed and co-created, "Let's Make A Deal".

"Let's Make A Deal" ran from 1963 until 1991..not too shabby for a game show. Hall will always be associated with this and other game shows.

He died on Sept. 30th at the age of 96.


It's that time of year once again.

October will be upon us tomorrow and that means Halloween is just around the corner. There is absolutely no shortage of things to watch on Blu-ray or DVD as this has been one hell of a year for interesting releases.

During October I will be reviewing some new horror films as well as visiting old friends for some recommended Halloween viewing. I am also starting to compile my list of the top releases of the year and usually I do the Top 50, this year I will probably do the Top 60 as there have been tons coming out, and still more to come before my cut off date.

I appreciate everyone who stops by and looks at the blog and those that leave comments as well. This is strictly a labor of love for cinema and a few other things and I am glad I can share that with a few others.

Just wanted to ask anyone who is having trouble accessing this blog to contact me and I will see what is going on. I have only heard from one person so far, and that problem is being worked on.


Angie Dickinson is 86, Ian Ogilvy is 74, Angela Pleasence is 76, Candice Michelle is 40, Rula Lenska is 70, Marilyn McCoo is 74, and Patrice Rushen is 63.

Friday, September 29, 2017


Fine example of classic film noir.

Broderick Crawford stars as the editor of an exploitation paper that is good at printing sensational junk.

At a paper sponsored dance he meets his ex wife whom he divorced and abandoned. She threatens to expose him and later that night he kills her.

His young protege, Steve McCleary (Jon Hall) is assigned to the case and he vows to find the killer. During his investigation everyone who seems to know something is killed.

Crawford's character of Mark Chapman lives in quiet desperation as he watches his crime being investigated by the very person he trained to leave no stone uncovered.

Sam Fuller wrote the story on which this film is based and it really has his name written all over it. The film works on every level and the climax puts you in a tight corner from which there is but only one escape.

The supporting cast includes Donna Reed, Henry O'Neill, Harry Morgan, Rosemary DeCamp, and James Millican. Another highly recommended film noir that TCM aires once in a while.


Erika Eleniak is 48, and Jerry Lee Lewis is 82.

Thursday, September 28, 2017


One of the loveliest actresses who starred in some of my favorite films has passed away.

Anne Jeffreys had a career that spanned from 1942 until 2013 which is a spectacular 71 years. Her career kicked off with several small roles in such films as "Tarzan's New York Adventure" and "The Flying Tigers" until she graduated to B westerns and finally to more well known films.

Some of her best work in my opinion was in such films as "Dillinger", "Zombies On Broadway", and "Genius At Work". I was first introduced to her in the classic films "Dick Tracy" and "Dick Tracy Vs. Cueball". In both films she portrayed Tracy's love interest, Tess Trueheart.

Of everything I have ever seen her in I think she was at her sexiest on "Zombies On Broadway". Jeffreys also starred in 83 episodes of "Topper", 7 episodes of "Falcon Crest", 23 episodes of "Finder of Lost Loves" and many, many more TV shows.

She had a very long and illustrious career. She passed away on Sept. 27th, 2017 at the age of 94.


Ida Lupino, one of the best directors ever to work in Hollywood directed this interesting film about a sexual crime and it's aftermath.

Mala Powers stars as a young woman who is sexually assaulted while on her way home from work, and the trauma it causes in her life and those around her.

Her boyfriend and family try to help her but that pressure as well as that caused by the police during the investigation is too much and she flees her home town and goes to a small little community where she is befriended by a kindly priest, Rev. Bruce Ferguson (Tod Andrews).

Slowly she comes out of her shell until she is approached by a young man at a local dance and she nearly kills him after he attempts to kiss her.

This movie is expertly handled by Lupino and it deals quite well with the shattered lives of all involved. Powers performance is a good indicator of how her career would go. This was her screen debut and she does one hell of a job. The rest of the cast includes Robert Clarke, Raymond Bond and Roy Engel.

A great little film about a serious issue and if you get a chance to see this DO IT!!


Brigitte Bardot is 83.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017


I have been watching a lot of TCM at a friends house and this little film noir gem came on.

Edmond O'Brien is Mal Granger, a telephone company worker with a keen knowledge of electronics who feels he is wasting his time at his job.

His small time bookie introduces Mal to Vince Walters (Barry Kelley) who runs a small time operation with horse racing and a betting circuit. Walters hires Granger to improve communications for him and soon Granger has him nationwide and making millions.

Walters has Granger become his number 2 man and when Walters is shot and killed by a terrified man who owes him a lot of money, Granger immediately takes over. Slowly he builds an almost unstoppable empire of crime that is at constant war with the police and the Government, but soon a new enemy moves in.

the East Coast crime syndicate wants to take over the gambling west of Kansas and they spot Granger and his operations. This sets up a great war of wits that nobody will win.

This is an excellent film noir directed by Joseph Newman and O'Brien is really very good in his starring role. The epic final at Hoover Dam is remarkable in that director Newman makes such a huge place seem so confining and inescapable.

The supporting cast for this great genre entry includes Joanna Dru, Dorothy Patrick, Don Porter, Robert Osterloh and Otto Kruger as Carl Stephens, the head of the east coat operation that wants to take over. Kruger is very memorable in the role.

Highly Recommended!!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017


Don Dohler strikes again.

An alien lands on Earth for unknown reasons and he finds himself hunted by a bunch of redneck hillbillies.

The rubber suited monster is cheap looking, but that is totally understandable considering the budget. The shot in Maryland film is well done for what it is even if some of the acting is stiff. Again, these are not important issues.

The almost always drunk member of of a small family seeks the weapons the invader carries so he can make a lot of money, but another sleazy friend of his wants to capture the monster and make even more money.

The alien is aided by some friendly people yet is seems all ends in disaster. This is a pretty simple and straight forward plot and the film does move along at a brisk pace.

I have always liked Dohler's films and I marvel at his accomplishments with so little money. The cast is made up of a lot of Dohler regulars including George Stover, Anne Frith, Richard Dyszel and Don Leifert.

Good fun, at least in my opinion.


Olivia Newton John is 69, Christina Milian is 36, Lysette Anthony is 54, Martine Beswick is 76, and Victoria Vetri is 73.

Monday, September 25, 2017


Fine Humphrey Bogart film noir.

Bogart is Dixon Steele, a potentially violent screenwriter whose quick temper has gotten him into a lot of trouble in the past.

After an encounter in a restaurant he invites a young woman to his apartment to fill him in on a novel he is too lazy to read but must turn into a screenplay. He name is Mildred Atkinson (Martha Stewart) and she is more than happy to oblige.

After she leave Dixon's home all seems well until the police come to see Steele early in the morning. Mildred has been murdered and Dixon is the prime suspect.

His best friend, Brub Nicoali (Frank Lovejoy) is a policeman who knows Dixon is innocent. A lovely young woman, Laurel Gray (Gloria Grahame) steps forward and gives Steele an alibi. Turns out she is his neighbor. They slowly falls in love.

The accusation of murder and constant badgering by the police take it's toll on Dix and Laurel, and soon their relationship is a wreck.

This is an excellent example of film noir as it depicts two people whose lives are utterly destroyed, even after Dixon is cleared by another man's confession.

Nicholas Ray directed this unsung gem and it has all of his touches. The story sucks you in and packs a hell of a punch at the end. Recommended viewing.


Heather Locklear is 56, and Louisa Moritz is 71.

Sunday, September 24, 2017


News has just reached me about the death of a great actress from many Hammer horror films.

Suzan Farmer was an incredibly beautiful actress who appeared in many films I love so dearly including "Die Monster Die", "Dracula Prince Of Darkness", "Rasputin The Mad Monk", "Devil Ship Pirates" and many more.

She had a 22 year career in acting that ended in 1980 and did a lot of british TV shows as well. She passed away on Sept. 17th, 2017 at the age of 75.


There has been a lot of talk about this film, and rightly so.

This was the first time I have stepped into a movie theater in 4 years. I decided to give this movie a try since I enjoy the book by Stephen King and loved the first film back in 1990.

The story takes place in Derry, Maine where there have been many disappearances and deaths of children. As a matter of fact it's 6 times the national average in this sleepy little town.

A group of misfit kids get together and decide to find out what is going on. One of the kids' brother disappeared the previous year and he is determined to find out what happened to his brother, Georgie. The children are met with terrifying sights and sounds by a malevolent evil that disguises itself as a clown named Pennywise.

This clown has your typical painted face and rubber nose, but also has as many sharp teeth as the monster in "Deadly Spawn"!!! The children finally get together and confront the evil in an epic showdown.

The movie only covers the first half of the novel by King, but it does tell a good story. The characters are all believable and they manage to convey the good and bad times of childhood even if they are a bit exaggerated. The Pennywise clown is terrifying in his own right, but I think it pales to the Tim Curry interpretation and that may be because the first movie had such an impact on me.

I can recommend this modern film, and that it a rarity. See it and judge for yourself.


Stephanie McMahon is 41, April Hunter is 44, and Bert I. Gordon is 95.

Friday, September 22, 2017


A great film noir.

Glenn Ford stars as Mike Lambert, a mining engineer who arrives in a small town after the brakes on the truck he is driving causes him to have an accident.

He goes to a cafe and meets a beautiful woman named Paula Craig (Janis Carter). She pays his fine in court for the accident and even pays for a room for him to stay in.

Mike falls hard for her, but her motives are far from noble. Paula and her lover, a married banker named Steve Price (Barry Sullivan)are making plans to steal $250,000 from a local bank, and they need a fall guy.

There are a lot of dark twists and turns in this film noir and I cannot understand why this hasn't been released on any format here in the USA.

the cast is top notch and Janis Carter makes a perfect cold and callous woman with nothing but evil on her mind. She really stands out as one of the top femme fatals in film noir history.

The wonderful supporting cast includes Edgar Buchanan, Karen Morley and Jim Bannon. If TCM runs this again and you're a film noir fan I recommend you see it. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!


Catherine Oxenberg is 56, Shari Belafonte is 63, Debbie Boone is 61, and Asa Maynor is 81.

Thursday, September 21, 2017


Many people call this the worst film ever made.

I disagree since this film brings me a lot of enjoyment in it's awfulness. The movie centers around a spaceship that crashes near Lake Tahoe. Inside of the craft is a huge monster that looks something like a carpet with vacuum clear hoses attached to it. The thing leaves the ship and begins to devour anyone it comes in contact with.

Now, for a monster movie fan like me this sounds like a pretty cool premise. However, the movie is poorly constructed, poorly acted and the soundtrack consists of narration for the most part.

There are plenty of unforgettable moments in this film including many of the killings in which the "victims" have to force themselves inside of the monster. One classic scene involves a very overweight man and his grandson. Watching this guy flop around like a beached whale in a very muddy stream as he tries to escape the monster is a true highlight.

My favorite scene involves the military as they fight the monster. It actually manages to consume almost all of the soldiers in one swallow except for one guy who stays on the ground with his legs in the air staring directly at the camera!!

The bizarre and tragic backstory of the film was made into a docudrama called "Creep Behind The Camera" which I reviewed yesterday. I was first introduced to this film on KCPX TV on a show called NIGHTMARE THEATER back in the mid 70's and when I first saw it my jaw just hit the floor. Here I was, a teenaged monster kid seeing a movie that was unlike any other film I had ever seen.

I had never heard of the film until that fateful night, but I sure wanted to know more, and over the years I found out plenty and didn't get to see it again until Rhino Video turned it out on VHS in the 80's, and yes I spent $49.99 for the tape.

I am very proud and happy that Synapse has turned this out on Blu-ray in a beautiful 2k scan. It looks better than I have ever seen it and this is another top release of the year. I cannot recommend this Blu-ray enough. You simply must add this to your collection.


Rebecca Balding is 62, Yvonne Wilder is 80, and Teresa Gimpera is 81.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017


A favorite of mine from the 70's blaxploitation era has died.

Casey's career in movies started back in 1969 with a role in GUNS OF THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN, and then he was off and running.

Before acting he was a football star with the San Francisco 49ers and then the Los Angeles Rams. Casey starred in many, many films that I love including BRIAN'S SONG, BOXCAR BERTHA, GARGOYLES, CLEOPATRA JONES, DR. BLACK AND MR. HYDE and more.

Casey was always a dominating presence in his films no matter how good or bad they were. he passed away on Sept. 20th at the age of 78.


Filmed in Colorado Springs, this film is entertaining and a real eye opener.

First off let me say I spent 24 years in the movie business both in front and behind the camera and there are so many people like Art Nelson in the movie business today and that is why I am no longer a part of it.

This film is a documentary/re-creation hybrid that works very, very well. Josh Phillips stars as Art Nelson, a swindler, con man, wife beater and child abuser who conned an entire town out of money to make one of the "worst" films of all time called "The Creeping Terror". Nelson does a hell of a job in this role mind you.

It tells the story of how Nelson tried to create a "masterpiece" of monster movie filmmaking and fell flat on his face. The movie is interspersed with interviews of Nelson's first wife and many people who worked on this film with him. Nobody has anything nice to say about the "man".

Lovely Jodi Lynn Thomas is Lois, Nelson's much abused wife and some of her scenes are hard to watch. I don't want to give away too much of this plot as I think every horror movie fan should see this film.

Director Pete Schuermann has created an entertaining and disturbing film all at the same time. Way back in the day I saw the Creeping Terror on TV and couldn't believe what i was seeing, and I had the same feeling watching this film about how this movie came to be in the first place.

Do I consider The Creeping Terror to be the worst film ever made? Nope, only because I get some great enjoyment from seeing it, but I can tell you I will never see it the same way again after watching this film.

The Blu-ray presentation has some great extras and interviews and best of all it has a restored 2k restoration of the original Creeping Terror, which will be reviewed here later. Glad to see the film finally getting recognized, but how I wish the story behind the scenes was happier.

Sadly the movie business hasn't changed much. A lot of the people in the business are alcoholics, spouse abusers, pedophiles and liars. I will admit this is one of the top releases of the year.


Sophia Loren is 83, Asia Argento is 42, and Brinke Stevens is 63.

Monday, September 18, 2017


It has been a very long time since I saw this little gem, and now Code Red brings it to Blu-ray.

Three people on a snowmobile excursion find themselves stranded at an old, abandoned lodge during a serious Canadian snowstorm.

The place is somewhat creepy and before you know it they find an old lady who is the caretaker of the place along with her very aloof son.

Slowly things start to fall apart and one of the women mysteriously disappears. The snowmobiles are tampered with and from there the terror grows. It seems the old lady and her son have a mythical monster called a "Windigo" in the basement and the creature feeds on human flesh.

The low budget of this film ran out and so the director and crew made things up as they went along, which accounts for some of the plot problems, but don't let that deter you. This is a very creepy film with a great pay off at the end.

The Blu-ray presentation is very nice and far better than I have seen with this film before many years ago. If you like good, creepy horror I would recommend this little obscure gem.

The cast of unknowns does an excellent job.


Frankie Avalon is 78, and Veronica Carlson is 73.

Sunday, September 17, 2017


One of the greatest entertainers in the world of professional wrestling has died.

I grew up watching the man and followed his career for many, many years. He was perhaps the greatest wrestling manager of all time as well as one of the funniest color commentators on the air.

My first introduction to Heenan was in the AWA in Minnesota where he managed Nick Bockwinkle for many years. he played the part of the heel better than anyone else in the business and he never changed roles...ever.

Even if you aren't a wrestling fan you probably have heard of this wonderful man and it saddens me that another person I knew and grew up watching has died. Heenan has several health issues over the years and passed away surrounded by his family on Sept. 17th, 2017 at the age of 73.

I will miss Bobby and his craziness, but he has left a long lasting legacy in the world of pro wrestling that will never go away. his kind don't even exist in the business today.


Very obscure film from W. Lee Wilder.

George Sanders stars as Henri Landru, a man who falls for a young woman named Odette (Corinne Calvet). Odette is a temptress and Landru falls for her immediately.

She and a friend concoct a scheme to get money and Landru falls for it. Sadly he doesn't have the money, but he devises a way to get it, and that is by preying on wealthy women and killing them for their money.

Sanders does a very good job in the title role as a crazed killer who kills for love and money. The film draws the viewer in and you can feel that Landru is a man who is both desperate and needy and that the circle is slowly closing around him. I haven't seen this film since the late 80's when it appeared on a small and brand new TV station in Bozeman, Montana.

The print TCM ran is excellent and it was good to see this again. I wish this was available on DVD or Blu-ray as it would be in my collection. Wilder made some pretty cool stuff, at least in my opinion including "KIllers From Space". "Man Without A Body" and "The Omeagans" which is a personal favorite.

If you want to see this well made thriller check the TCM schedule and see if it's running again. The supporting cast for this gem includes Patricia Roc, Greta Gynt and George Coulouris.


Cassandra Peterson is 66.

Saturday, September 16, 2017


Olive is making Halloween even more special with two spectacular Blu-ray releases.

On Oct. 31st they will be releasing the classic Monogram film RETURN OF THE APE MAN and the ultra rare Republic shocker THE VAMPIRE'S GHOST.

Both of these films have been sought after by film fans like myslef for a long time, and finally they are being released....and on Blu-ray!!

Great stuff indeed!!