In 2012 we lost one of the BEST performers in the world and in my lifetime. Today Donna Summer would have turned 71.
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Tuesday, December 31, 2019
What a year it was in just about everything. I lost a few more good friends this year, which is, of course, never good. We have seen a country become more divided than ever on every single issue and that is something I thought I'd never live to see.
2020 will bring us even more division, especially since this is an election year, and that is going to be most interesting. Music in 2019 still sucked as it has for years as did most of the movies that came out. Yes, there were a few good ones, but they are usually hidden in the bottom of a huge pile of junk films.
As the years pass I find myself going and staying further in the past as I feel that is where the best entertainment lies. 2019 was a great year for DVD and Blu-ray and I am sorry that health issues and other matters prevented me from seeing all that I wanted to, but at least it's out there for others to enjoy.
The coming year looks pretty good for both mediums and although I won't get to see everything again, I am glad that things are moving along just fine in classic entertainment and music.
I hope everyone reading this has a great New Year and has spent the holiday season taking time to reflect on their personal lives. When the end of the year gets here I have several traditions including listening to classic AT40 Top 100 countdowns of the year with Casey Kasem. This year I listened to 1976, 1981 and 1985.
I also have several gin and tonics while watching classic TV shows and this year I received several DVD's as Christmas gifts and they contain some great television. I will indulge after work on New Year's Eve, then I will be reviewing some of those classics in January.
However you spend the end of the year, I hope you have a good one, and I'll be here posting more stuff, and some of it will be bad, some good and some excellent. HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE.
Monday, December 30, 2019
Sunday, December 29, 2019
Saturday, December 28, 2019
20. MONSTER ON THE CAMPUS 1958 (SHOUT FACTORY) BLU-RAY... Great 50's horror with Arthur Franz as a man who injects himself with a serum and changes into a prehistoric man. One of my all time faves and it looks fantastic on Blu.
19. PROPHECY 1979 (SHOUT FACTORY) BLU-RAY...Shout continued to turn out the greatest number of great genre horror films with this classic film about a mutant monster running loose in the woods of Maine. Scared the hell out of me when I first saw it, and I still love it.
18. LUST FOR A VAMPIRE 1971 (SHOUT FACTORY) BLU-RAY... Long sought after Hammer film about vampires starring gorgeous Suzanne Leigh and Yutte Stensgaard. Yep, both the beautiful women look great on Blu-ray and a huge thanks to Shout for finally bringing this out.
17. HORROR OF DRACULA 1958 (WARNER ARCHIVE) BLU-RAY... The first Hammer vampire film and the one that started it all starring Christopher Lee as the infamous Count Dracula and Peter Cushing as Van Helsing.
16. HERCULES IN THE HAUNTED WORLD 1961 (KINO) BLU-RAY... Great sword and sandal fantasy film starring Christopher Lee as the evil Lico and Reg Park as Hercules. Lovely to look at on Blu I wish more of these kinds of films would get re-mastered.
15. THE MONOLITH MONSTERS 1957 (SHOUT FACTORY) BLU-RAY... The closer we get to number one the more Shout releases there are. This is and always will be one of my favorite films because it's so damned original. Giant growing rocks threaten to take over the world. Grant Williams and Lola Albright star.
14. ALLIGATOR PEOPLE 1959 (SHOUT FACTORY) BLU-RAY... More fun 50's horror on Blu. A scientist conducts experiments on people and changes them into hideous monsters.
13. SATAN'S TRIANGLE 1973 (SINISTER CINEMA)... Great made for TV terror film about a woman discovered alone on a boat after it has passed thru the Devil's Triangle. I never forgot this gem after it scared me so badly on TV when it first aired 46 years ago.
12. MUMMY'S REVENGE 1976 (SCORPION) BLU-RAY... A great Paul Naschy film about a mummy that comes to life and kills those who has disturbed him. This is simply the BEST looking print ever of this film and you'll never see it better than this. Gorgeous color and widescreen and fully uncut.
11. ASSIGNMENT TERROR 1971 (SCORPION) BLU-RAY... Again, a gorgeous print and fully uncut. Michael Rennie stars with the incredibly sexy Karin Dor in a film about alien invaders who plan to conquer Earth with the help of several monsters including The Mummy and the wolfman (Paul Naschy). I have always loved this movie and it was a real treat to finally see it as it was meant to be seen. Widescreen and uncut.
And there you are. Next week will be the first Saturday of 2020, and that is when I will introduce my Top 10 releases for 2019. Have a Happy New Year and I will continue the countdown next week.
In her 20 year acting career Lyon made quite an impression.
She appeared in 2 episodes of TV programs before being offered the lead in the classic film "Lolita" in 1962. She made world wide headlines by starring in that particular film and it seemed like her career would take off, and while it did she kind of shunned away from it all.
The beautiful Lyon also starred in three genre film. One was "The Astral Factor", the others were "End Of The World" which is one of my favorite off beat little films and "Alligator" in 1980.
She captivated my heart when I was a younger man and to me she will always be beautiful. She died on Dec. 26th, 2019 at the age of 73.
Friday, December 27, 2019
This is a show from 2002 in which Mr. Lobo interviewed the greatest living horror host to ever live...Bob Wilkins. It takes place in the Sacramento City Cemetery where Wilkins actually did part of his show one night many years ago.
There are also plenty of trailers and film clips and other weird things that seem to fit just fine with the interview. To me it's always good to see Wilkins in anything since I grew up with him and enjoyed his Creature Features show on both KTXL TV 40 from Sacramento and KTVU TV 2 from Oakland/San Francisco.
Seeing him in this brings back a lot of fuzzy warm memories of childhood. The only part of the DVD I didn't like was the short interview Lobo does with "filmmaker" Michael Moore. I could have done without that.
However, I cannot recommend this enough for anyone who remembers Wilkins and his dry humor and wonderful TV persona. A great way to spend an hour if you ask me.
Just remember...WATCH HORROR FILMS...KEEP AMERICA STRONG.
Thursday, December 26, 2019
LaBeef was born in Smackover, Arkansas in 1934. His first recording was in 1957 and he recorded many, many rockabilly hits.
If you're not a fan of rockabilly music, you may remember him from the 1968 obscurity "The Exotic Ones" aka "Monster And The Strippers" where he played the giant that was captured and put on display until he escapes.
LaBeef died on Dec. 26th, 2019 at the age of 84. He was one of a kind.
This is the second film with Paul Naschy as Waldemar Daninsky, but his character really plays second banana to everything else going on.
Aliens invade the Earth with the intention of wiping out the human race by using fear and superstition against the. Michael Rennie stars as Dr. Odo Warnoff, the leader of the alien invaders from a dying planet who enlists the help of two other scientists who were killed but no re-animated by the aliens.
These revived scientists are Dr. Kerian (Angel del Pozo) and Maleva Kerstein (Karin Dor). Together the three of them search the world for Earth monsters and find a vampire, a werewolf (Daninsky of course), The Mummy, and Farancksalan Monster.
Something begins to go terribly wrong when Maleva begins to have human emotions and falls in love with Kerian. Not only this, but they find it hard to control the monsters and the beautiful women they have captured and brainwashed into their helpers.
All of the prints I have seen, never make too much sense, but I loved the film anyway. Now with this UNCUT release, several scenes help make it more understandable, and it never looked better. This is the US debut of the uncut print as well and being in the proper widescreen aspect ratio. The film moves along at a very quick pace and is never boring.
If you like Euro sci-fi and horror with super sexy Euro babes, you'll love this film. The disc has the US and Spanish language versions plus some pretty cool trailers and a great stills gallery.
Karin Dor was and always will be incredibly sexy to me and she is the main draw in this film, as far as I am concerned. The rest of the cast includes Craig Hill and the beautiful Patty Shepard. One of the best releases of the year. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!
I guess I should explain that the Frankenstein monster has had it's name changed in this film to an almost unpronounceable one and I believe this was done out of fear of copyright infringement. Every time they say his name I have to do a double take.
Wednesday, December 25, 2019
Tuesday, December 24, 2019
JOEY 2/18/56... This fourth season kick off tells the story of a young woman and her affection for her prize winning horse that is being taken away from her until Superman intervenes.
THE UNLUCKY NUMBER 2/25/56... A rigged contest of counting jellybeans in a jar is run by gangsters who have even bigger crimes in mind whcih include impersonating Superman.
THE BIG FREEZE 3/3/56... A dishonest politician and a leading gangster try to kill Superman by freezing him at 2000 degrees below zero. The plan almost works.
PERIL BY SEA 3/10/56... Planet editor Perry White develops a formula which can extract uranium from water. A gangster named Ace Miller (Claude Akins) plots to steal the formula.
TOPSY TURVY 4/21/56... The first of several shows featuring Prof. Pepperwinkle (Phillips Tead). The prof. has invested a machine that fools the nervous system and makes people think they are upside down. A bizarre episode indeed.
JIMMY THE KID 4/25/56... When gangsters break into Clark Kent's office to find secret documents and turn up empty handed, they enlist the aid of a cold blooded hoodlum who looks just like Jimmy Olsen.
THE GIRL WHO HIRED SUPERMAN 5/5/56... Gloria Talbot stars as a spoiled woman who hires Superman to entertain her guests for money donated to a charity. What she doesn't know is that she has been manipulated by gangsters.
THE WEDDING OF SUPERMAN 5/12/56... Lois ans Superman make plans to be married and everyone in Metropolis is surprised to hear this news. Is this real or what? A very interesting episode.
DAGGER ISLAND 5/19/56... Lois, Jimmy and Clark serve as referees for a treasure hunt on a small island in the ocean. Myron Healey and Raymond Hatton star.
BLACKMAIL 5/26/56... Inspector Henderson (Robert Shayne) is blackmailed by a gangster who has planted a stolen $20,000 on him and now is being forced to do as the gangster says or be exposed as a "thief".
THE DEADLY ROCK 6/2/56... A friend of Clark's who is affected by kryptonite radiation comes to Metropolis just as a scientist is offering to sell some to the mob.
THE PHANTOM RING 6/9/56... Clark tries joining a ring of thieves who have special coins that make them all invisible. A very good sci-fi tinged episode.
THE JOLLY ROGER 6/16/56... Pirates kidnap Jimmy, Lois and Clark and hold out on an island about to be bombed by the US Navy.
That concludes season 4 of the classic show. The remaining 2 years would also consist of only 13 episodes, but there was a lot of fun episodes to come.
Monday, December 23, 2019
Three children are aided by the two Nymphs who take care of Mothra when they try to stop a giant monster.
The monster is called Dagahra and eats garbage. It's a very cool looking monster and I was impressed with it, but it really didn't help the rest of the movie.
Like the previous film it's way too childish for me and it's over the top environmentalism is a bore to me. I don't watch Japanese monster movies for any overt messages, and this had plenty of them.
Needless to say I was bored and cannot recommend this film to anyone except monster movie completists.
Saturday, December 21, 2019
30. MR. LOBO'S CINEMA INSOMNIA BOB WILKINS HALLOWEEN SPECIAL 2002 (ALPHA)... A great little DVD with Lobo interviewing the greatest horror host of all time...Bob Wilkins.
29. LEGEND OF THE SEVEN GOLDEN VAMPIRES 1976 (SHOUT FACTORY) Blu-ray... Peter Cushing stars in this wild mixture of vampirism and Kung Fu. I have always loved this film and am finally glad to see it on Blu.
28. ITSY BITSY 2019 (SHOUT FACTORY)...This was my most viewed post last month. It's a very well made thriller about a giant spider and an ancient curse. I loved this film, and for a new movie it wasn't bad at all. The effects used are quite good and the film is well acted. Check it out if you get the chance.
27. THE GIANT BEHEMOTH 1959 (WARNER ARCHIVE) Blu-ray...A giant prehistoric monster rampages thru London in this fun little effort. Gene Evans stars in a long awaited release for fans of 50's horror.
26. INVASION OF THE BLOOD FARMERS 1972 (SEVERIN) Blu-ray...Ed Adlum gem about a Druid cult attempting to raise their long dead queen. One of the most bizarre films I have ever seen and it looks spectacular on Blu-ray. B movie Gold!!
25. THIS ISLAND EARTH 1955 (SHOUT FACTORY) Blu-ray... An alien race attempts to save it's planet by kidnapping Earth scientists. Top notch special effects, great sound and Faith Domergue...what more could you ask for?? A very welcome Blu-ray release from Shout.
24. THE CHILDREN 1980 (VINEGAR SYNDROME) Blu-ray... I waited forever to see this film finally come out on Blu, and here it is. A nuclear accident turns innocent children into monsters that burn their victims to a crisp.
23. BARB WIRE 1996 (MILL CREEK) Blu-ray... Pamela Anderson stars in this feature based on the comic strip. This movie bombed so badly but I really liked it. Hmmmmm....well I was always a fan of Anderson's so maybe that helped. For me, a personal favorite.
22. DEADLY MANTIS 1957 (SHOUT FACTORY) Blu-ray... Wonderful 50's monster movie about a giant mantis causing havoc around the world. Craig Stevens and Alix Talton star along with William Hopper. A great film and a fun one that looks great on Blu-ray. A very welcome release from 2019.
21. BLOOD FROM THE MUMMY'S TOMB 1971 (SHOUT FACTORY)Blu-ray... Valerie Leon in Blu-ray and high def is all you need to know!!! She stars as a young woman affected by an ancient curse in this great Hammer classic that got a top notch release in 2019.
Well there you are, more of my top picks for the year in the area of Blu-ray and DVD. I'll continue next week as we get closer to number one. BY the time the next countdown is posted Christmas will have passed, so I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. Hard to believe I'll be turning another year older as well.
Friday, December 20, 2019
I have just been informed that Steve Hawkes died on June 23rd, 2019.
Hawkes starred in a few movies, but is best known as Herschell in the 1972 pro-christian, anti drug, gore film entitled "Blood Freak". Hawkes was a Croatian born actor.
Steve also ran an animal sanctuary in Florida. Any "B" movie fan will always remember him from Blood Freak and may he rest in peace. He was 77.
Thursday, December 19, 2019
The French actress was best known to American audiences as the sexy "Domino" in the 007 film "Thunderball" has died at the age of 78.
Auger was very busy after the Bond film but her movies were not seen by many here in the states. However, two Giallo films that she made gave her a bigger fan base here in the USA. "A Bay Of Blood" and "Black Belly Of The Tarantula" are two gems of the genre.
Claudine was one of the most beautiful women to ever grace the screen and she will be missed. She died in Paris on Dec. 19th, 2019.
The story is pretty simple and straight forward. During the Korean War a USO Troup finds itself trapped behind enemy lines.
They are soon discovered by a small band of US soldiers and they all try and get back to their lines, but they are discovered by the North Koreans who intend to track and kill them.
There are several women in the troupe and one, Lorry (Eve Meyer) is very strong willed and not at all willing to take orders from the military and this is the way most of the troupe feels until a couple of them are killed in a savage attack.
Byron Morrow as Benny is the most well known of the cast and his character is killed rather early in the film. The largely unknown cast makes the movie even better as it always presents a rather raw edge to the proceeding.
It's always good to see the gorgeous Eve Meyer. She was the wife of Russ Meyer during his best period of film making, and she was killed in a tragic air disaster in 1977.
Shout is/was streaming this unknown little gem and if you want to see something slightly different from AIP, then you should check this out. Oh yes, and Eve is beautiful as ever in this.
Wednesday, December 18, 2019
Shout has announced two of my favorite 50's films for Blu-ray releases in March.
First up is HOW TO MAKE A MONSTER about a make-up man seeking revenge on the studio bosses who have put him out of work. Monstera a plenty in this fun little film.
And then 'DAY THE WORLD ENDED". My favorite Roger Corman movie and one of my top 20 favorites of all time. This film may be the release of the year 2020!!
Both a VERY welcome additions to my Blu-ray collection.
Shout is also offering up on Blu-ray the classic horror film "LET'S SCARE JESSICA TO DEATH" on January 28th. If you have never seen this film, you should.
Criterion is releasing a stunning Blu-ray of the film noir classic "Leave Her To Heaven" in March and that promises to be a winner as well.
Tuesday, December 17, 2019
Mary Lambert directed this Richard Rubinstein production based on the Stephen King novel of the same name.
Dale Midkiff is Louis Creed, a young doctor who moves into a small town in a house by a very busy highway where the trucks roar past as high speeds.
With him are his wife Rachel (Denise Crosby), his daughter Ellie (Blaze Berdahl) his son Gage (Miko Hughes) and their cat named Church. Their neighbor across the highway is Jud Crandall (Fred Gwynne).
One day Jud take the family down a path from their home which leads to a pet cematary which leaves everyone a little creeped out. One day Louis has a patient who has been his by a truck die in his operating room, and the corpse returns to life to warn him about a secret Indian burial ground just beyond the pet cematary.
While the family is gone for Thanksgiving, Church is hit and killed by a truck and Jud takes Louis to the Indian burial ground and Lou buries the cat. Within hours Church returns, only he returns as a slightly different cat with glowing eyes and a very bad temper.
When Gage is struck and killed by a truck, Louis takes his body up to the burial ground as well, and thus comes a very exciting and terrifying climax. Gage comes back as a sinister killer child who uses a scalpel to slice people up including Jud and his own mother.
The ending of the movie is a shocker and very dark and brooding with Louis not learning his lesson about the Indian burial ground, or maybe he just isn't sane anymore.
If you've never seen this film, I highly recommend this thriller, and yes it was remade, but not very well. This is the version to see, and always remember "Sometimes Dead is Better".
Monday, December 16, 2019
I very rarely find movies of this kind a bore, but my God, I could barely stay awake.
The film opens with the a mining company tearing apart a forest and finding and ancient ruin that soon becomes something that could end the world. The two fairies that always accompany Mothra seek a small amulet as well as their evil sister.
Needless to say one thing leads to another and soon Mothra is fighting to save the Earth from Desghidorah, a three headed monster that threatens to destroy the environment as well as the world.
The monsters are well done, of course and Mothra is simply beautiful, but the movie is poorly acted and the story really sucks. I'm not a believer in environmental lunacy and this movie seemed to me to be a mixture of Toho monsters and Captain Planet drivel.
I would have to say this is the worst Toho film I have ever seen and that even surprised me. I couldn't really get into the story or anything else for that matter.
However, if you're a Toho completest you'll want to see this movie, but I can't recommend it. They made a sequel to this which I will watch and review later and I hope to heck it's better than this.