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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

WORLD OF GIANTS 1959 (CLASSIC FLIX)

This is a very rare TV series that was issued on DVD and Blu-ray last summer. I managed to get thru only 3 episodes last December and then because of life changes I never got back to them until just recently.

This was produced in 1959, and at the time it was one of, if not the most expensive TV show ever produced. After 13 episodes were filmed they could not find a sponser so it was shelved until 1961 when it was picked up for first run syndication by ZIV.

The series is about Mel Hunter (Marshall Thompson), a secret agent who was involved in an accident behind the Iron Curtain and was mysteriously shrunk to 6 inches in height.

He continues working for the Government while doctors try to find a cure. His partner is Bill Winters (Arthur Franz) who carries Mel around in a special briefcase.

Each of the episodes is well done, and you can see where all the money went. The effects were pretty darned good for the day and that kind of stuff always costs an arm and a leg. It's interesting to note this was done a few years before Irwin Allen came out with "Land Of The Giants", and both are very similar.

Classic Flix has restored all of these wonderful episodes from 16mm prints and they look very good indeed. This has been a much sought after series for years and it was almost forgotten. Now here it is in all it's glory for sci-fi fans to enjoy once again.

The 13 episodes feature some of the best names in the business at the time. Some of them are gorgeous Peggy Castle, Gavin MacLeod, Barry Kroeger, Narda Onyx, Carol Kelly, James Seay and the always beautiful Allison Hayes.

If you get a chance I highly recommend this. It's a fun show and a great trip down memory lane with ZIV, one of the best companies ever involved with TV. I'll have more on them later if I get the time.

Episode List:

SPECIAL AGENT

TIME BOMB

TEETH OF THE WATCHDOG

DEATH TRAP

GAMBLING STORY

CHEMICAL STORY

FEATHERED FOE

THE POOL

RAINBOW OF FIRE

THE SMUGGLERS

OFF BEAT

UNEXPECTED MURDER

PANIC IN 3-B

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Jennifer Lopez is 55, Lynda Carter is 73, Torrie Wilson is 49 and Heidi Kristoffer is 42.

Tuesday, July 23, 2024

RIP TERESA GIMPERA 1936-2024

The gorgeous Spanish actress has passed away.

Any fan of Spanish cinema knows who this beauty was.

The first film I ever saw her in was "Young Hannah Queen Of The Vampires" in 1972. She appeared in many Spanish films and many genre types such as "Macabre", "Count Dracula", "Feast Of Satan", "Night Of The Scorpion", "Night Of The Devils", Naked Girl Murdered In The Park", "Love Slaves Of The Blood Mummy" and many others.

Teresa Gimpera passed away at 87. As of this writing I don't have a date of her death.

THEN THERE WERE THREE 1961 (US IMPORT)

Strange little WW2 film starring and directed by actor Alex Nicol.

The movie opens with an unseen spy being given orders by a German soldier and then we are switched to a small group of 8 men who have been separated from their units.

They are headed to a small town in Italy where a prisoner is being kept, and the Germans want to silence that particular person. The core of the story is that one by one the soldiers die mysterious deaths as they make their way to the town of San Corrado, and one of them is a German spy whose mission it is to kill the Italian prisoner.

This is a rare combination of WW2 and mystery which makes for interesting viewing, at least for me anyway. I enjoyed the hell out of this movie.

It moves along at a good clip, and it will be a surprise who the killer is. I kind of suspected, but was never really sure until it got to about the last 4 men.

The rest of the cast includes Frank Latimore, Barry Cahill, Sidney Klute, Frank Gregory, Fredrick Clark and eye candy provided by the delicious Adriana Cole and Paola Falchi.

This is an obscure movie, but seek it out.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Ronny Cox is 86, Charisma Carpenter is 54, Lydia Cornell is 71, and Erika Blanc is 82.

Monday, July 22, 2024

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Erica Gavin is 77.

CAVALRY COMMAND 1963 (ALPHA)

This somewhat rare little film is also known as "Day Of The Trumpet".

Set in a small Filipino village in 1902, this tale is about a small band of US calvarymen help the locals with such things as building bridges, housing and getting things running for themselves.

A renagade nationalist sees the US soldiers helping his people with food amd medicine and decides to stop it any way he can. Sgt. Judd Norcutt (John Agar) is in charge and will not let anything stop his men from helping the people of the village.

This is an interesting film that for some reason has been lost to the cracks in filmmaking time. The cast also includes Alicia Vergel, Richard Arlen, William Phipps, Myron Healey, and of course Vic Diaz.

It's a color film and with a cast like is mentioned above, I'm shocked it's not better known. There are some very good battle sequences and the film never slows down.

I've read some hogwash garbage about the film being offensive to some. If you're one of those just shut up and move on. I know it's 2024 and everyone seems to have to whine about something, but remember it's only a movie.

Sunday, July 21, 2024

VON RICHTHOFEN AND BROWN 1971 (MGM)

Excellent Roger Corman directed film about the famous German pilot if WW1.

John Phillip Law essays the title role of Manfred von Richthofen, an ace WW1 pilot that is at odds with both the enemy of the air and other german pilots who are envious of his accomplishments.

Don Stroud also stars as English pilot Roy Brown, the man who has vowed to kill Manfred.

The air battle scenes in this movie are amazing and Corman handles everything with the usual flair that made him a legend in the world of film.

The characters are all very believable and once the action starts it does not stop. This is one of Corman's films that for some reason isn't talked about much. It's a gem.

Others in the cast include Hurd Hatfield, Karen Ericson, Tom Adams, Corin Redgrave, Ferdy Mayne and Clint Kimbrough. I Highly Recommend this film, and if you get a chance to see it, check it out.

Saturday, July 20, 2024

BACK FROM THE DEAD 1957 (KINO) BLU-RAY

I did a review for this obscure film a few years ago after watching it on YouTube.

Now it finally gets a 4K Blu-ray release. It has never been available in any format and is a very welcome addition to any horror collection.

This 20th Century Fox thriller stars gorgeous Peggy Castle as Mandy Anthony, a newly married woman. Her husband, Dick Anthony (Arthur Franz) is perplexed by her sometimes odd behavior.

One night Mandy passes out and when she comes to again she claims to be a woman named Felicia, who was Dick's first wife. It seems that Felicia was involved in the occult.

Felecia vowed to come back from the dead and now she has. Dick and Mandy's sister try and find a way to end this nightmare before Felicia takes over for good.

This macabre gem is sometimes a little slow, but it's no big deal. I like slow burning horror. The cast does a great job under the direction of Charles Marquis Warren.

The movie is presented in wonderful widescreen "Regalscope" with a crisp black and white image. I also have to admit that it's never a bad thing to see Peggy Castle in a black negligee, especially remastered.

A huge shout out to Kino for finally bringing this movie to Blu-ray and doing such a darn good job with it. The rest of the cast includes Marsha Hunt, Don Haggerty, James Bell, Marianne Stewart and Otto Reichow.

Friday, July 19, 2024

WOMEN BEHIND BARS 1975 (BLUE UNDERGROUND)

A Jess Franco WIP starring gorgeous Lina Romay.

Romay stars as Shirley Fields, a young woman who has a boyfriend that is a small time hood. He steals some diamonds and hides them away before going home.

She kills him and is then arrested and sentenced to a women's prison where she is regularly tortured. The warden is a sadist who loves watching the women get whipped, and he really gets excited when Shirley is tortured.

One day a man visits Shirley in the prison and he tells her that if she can get him the diamonds she will be set free. As you might expect this doesn't work out well.

This being a Jess Franco film you can expect beautiful women who are mostly naked, and hey, that is a plus. Franco even has a small role in the movie.

The movie has a very good ending and I am going to let you know I enjoyed this a lot. The team of Franco and his muse Romay made a ton of movies together, and this is one of the better ones.

The cast also includes Martine Stedil and Roger Darton as the Warden. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Elizabeth Kaitan is 64.

Thursday, July 18, 2024

RIP YVONNE FURNEAUX 1926-2024

Her movie career lasted 32 years and she made a lasting impression on me.

She was not as well known as other actresses of her time but she made a lot of darned good movies including "La Dolce Vita", "Cross Channel", "The Mummy" from 1959 Hammer Studios, "Charge of The Black Lancers" and "Repulsion".

I just watched her in "Repulsion" and "Charge Of The Black Lancers" both of which will be appearing here soon.

A very beautiful woman who always carried the show. Furneaux passed away on Juy 5th, 2024 at the age of 98.

UNKNOWN TERROR 1957 (KINO) BLU-RAY

This is a personal favorite of mine.

The past reviews of this have been from the long OOP Sinister Cinema DVD. Kino brings this to Blu-ray in a stunning "Regalscope" print that is simply beautiful.

An explorer gets lost in a cave and his sister Gina Matthews (Mala Powers) and her husband Dan (John Howard) launch an expedition to find him.

The third person in the party is Peter Morgan (Paul Richards) who was injured in an earlier accident with Dan. The three travel to a small south american village and find nothing but trouble.

They meet a doctor named Ramsey (Gerald Milton) and his beautiful wife Concha (May Wynn). Ramsey is no help to the three, but thry finally locate a mysterious underground cave thanks to Concha.

The doctor has been experimenting with molds and has created a mold that multiplies and cannot be killed. He also has infected many of the natives with it and turned them into fungus men.

I think this is a fun little film and have always enjoyed it. Thank goodness this is now out on Blu-ray and I believe every 50's monster movie fan will want to see this unhearalded gem.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Audrey Landers is 68, Molly Culver is 57, and Amanda Saccomanno is 34.

Wednesday, July 17, 2024

STAR OF INDIA 1954 (SHOUT FACTORY)

A good swashbuckler.

The story deals with a Squire named Pierre St. Laurent (Cornel Wilde) who returns to France after fighting a war in India only to find that his entire estate has been confiscated for back taxes.

On top of that is has been resold to Katrina (Jean Wallace) who is a Dutch Countess.

Pierre goes to the tax collector, a man named Narbonne (Herbert Lom) and demands justice, but Narbonne just laughs at him. Katrina offers to give Pierre's estate back to him is he will obtain a rare gem called "Star Of India" for her.

The only trouble is Narbonne has the priceless jewel and never lets it out of his sight. This sets up a great and colorful tale that really keeps the viewers interest.

The entire cast does their job well and Wallace looks as beautiful as ever. If you like great adventure films, I am sure you'll like this little effort from United Artists.

The cast also includes Yvonne Sanson, John Slater and Walter Rilla. This is good entertainment all around.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Catherine Schell is 80, P. J. Soles is 74, and David Hasselhoff is 72.

Tuesday, July 16, 2024

DESTINATION INNER SPACE 1966 (KINO) BLU-RAY

Yes, I have written about this movie before.

I was really amazed that this film was given a Blu-ray release as it sometimes seems to be a lost film in the cracks of the sci-fi genre.

It looks better than it ever has. The colors are deep and rich with a very sharp picture.

The plot revolves around and undersea lab that is fighting for survival against aliens who have landed a saucer underwater and a cool looking monster that hatches from an odd shaped egg that is discovered on the craft.

Scott Brady stars as Commander Wayne, a no nonsense soldier who takes charge of the dire situation. The movie looks like it was shot for TV and has kind of an Ivan Tors flavor to it.

I like this movie a hell of a lot ever since I first saw it as a child many years ago. The cast is top notch and includes Sheree North, Wende Wagner, Gary Merrill, Mike Road, John Howard, Biff Elliot and William Thourlby.

Genre fans may already know that the sexy as hell Wende Wagner went on to become a regular on "The Green Hornet" show and Mike Road was also the voice of Race Bannon on the "Jonny Quest" cartoon.

I highly recommend this somewhat forgotten sci-fi film.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

AnnaLynne McCord is 37, Ann Turkel is 78, and Al Cliver is 73.

Monday, July 15, 2024

SPECIES 3 2002 (MGM)

Brad Turner directed this 3rd installment of the series, and it is better than the second one.

The species of alien from the first 2 movies is starting to succomb to a strange infection.

A beautiful alien named Sara (Sunny Mabrey) tries to stop it. Sara is the offspring of Eve (Natasha Henstridge) who we see giving birth and then dying for good.

Sara tries in vain to find the perfect mate to create a perfect being and a demented scientist named Dr. Abbott (Robert Knepper) wants to use her eggs to also creat a perfect being and win the Nobel Prize.

He enlists the aid of a young college student, but they find Sara to be a very intelligent being who will not be stopped by any human on the planet.

This moves along at abgood pace, and Mabrey is perfect eye candy and is the main reason for watching this film. The rest of the cast includes Robin Dunne, Amelia Cooke and Christopher Neame.

I liked this movie and I won't give away the ending, but lets just say it was unexpected.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Brigitte Nielsen is 61, Patrick Wayne is 85, Linda Ronstadt is 78, and Lori Cardille is 70.

Sunday, July 14, 2024

COLOSSUS OF NEW YORK 1958 (KINO) BLU-RAY

I always did like this movie and now it has finally come to Blu-ray in a beautiful edition.

The story revoles around a young scientist named Jeremy Spensser (Ross Martin) who is killed when hit by a truck at an airport while trying to retrieve his son's toy airplane.

His father played by Otto Kruger transplants Jeremy's brain into a hulking metal monster in order to preserve his intellect.

Jeremy can no longer smell, taste, feel or anything and upon seeing his wife Anne (Mala Powers) and his son Billy (Charles Herbert) he comes to know he is just a mind and nothing more. This enrages him and he begins to kill people and terrorize Anne.

He even kills his brother Henry (John Baragrey). This is fun 50's sci-fi and the movie climaxes at the UN building with a great scene where the giant man crashes thru a plate glass window and starts shooting lasers from his eyes.

I wrote about this film a few years ago when it was finally released on DVD from Olive. This print looks even better. The rest of the cast includes Robert Hutton, Ron Engle and sam Harris.

Highly Recommended for horror fans and men like me who want to see gorgeous Mala Powers.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Roosevelt Geier is 92, and Helga Line is 92.

Saturday, July 13, 2024

SPECIES 2 1999 (MGM)

A fun sequel.

Yes it was fun, but it is a great letdown from the first one.

In this movie an astronaut returns to Earth and he has been infected with alien DNA. His name is Patrick (Justin Lazard) and he starts to mutate.

His only thought is to mate with captive alien Eve (Natassa Henstridge). That is the plot of the entire film. Michael Madson and Marg Helgenberger reprise their roles from the first movie.

It was really a disappointment to see the character of Eve reduced to a small supporting role, and I don't think the people who made the film had very much faith in their subject matter, hence the poor outcome.

It's ok as far as 90's sci-fi films go, but it really fails to deliver on the goods.

Fans of this kind of movie will like it, I believe, but who knows.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Robyn Hilton is 80, and Malisa Longo is 74.

Friday, July 12, 2024

HELL IN NORMANDY 1968 (TUTM)

A great little WW2 movie directed by Alfonso Brescia.

Guy Madison stars as Capt. Jack Murphey who leads a small command of troops who land on Normandy beach early as the original date has been pushed back and he was not notified in time.

Their time proves to be very well spent as they meet up with a beautiful woman named Denise (Erika Blanc) who protects the soldiers at all costs and she falls for a youg Lt. named Stobel (Peter Lee Lawrence).

This is a really good film that moves along at breakneck speed and never makes you lose your interest. I would love to see a remastered edition of this movie, but that's not too likely.

Guy Madison made his Italian film debut with this and went on to do many, many more movies there. My main attraction to watching this was, of course, Erika Blanc. She is my red headed Euro Goddess. She wears no exotic costumes in this....just regular clothes and yet she still manages to be a huge turn on.

The movie ends on a down beat message, but that is the realism of war. If you are a fan of WW2 films I think it's worth your time to hunt this one down.

Very well done.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Michelle Rodriguez is 46, Cheryl Ladd is 73, and Denise Nicholas is 80.

Thursday, July 11, 2024

3 STEPS TO THE GALLOWS 1953 (RENOWN)

A very well made and somewhat rare film noir.

This is also known as "White Fire" but that title makes no sense. Scott Brady stars as Gregor Stevens, a sailor who gets some time off to see his brother.

He gets a big shock when he finds out that his brother is scheduled to be hung in London in three days after being convicted of murder. Gregor sets out to prove his brother is innocent and that proves to be harder than Gregor ever expected.

He meets a beautiful woman named Yvonne (Mary Castle) who is somehow involved in the framing of Gregor's brother. Stevens also meets up with a boxer who helps him out and almost loses his life twice.

There are a lot of twists and turns in this fine little thriller that seems to be rather obscure, which is sad. The entire cast does an very good job in this John Gilling directed film.

The same production team that brought you "The Crawling Eye" are behind this movie as well. If you're a film noir fan, you might want to check this out. I won't say anything more about the movie as I don't want to spoil it.

The rest of the cast includes John Blythe, Gabriella Brune, Ferdy Mayne and Colin Tapley.

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

WHITE HEAT 1949 (WARNER)

One of the greatest film noir ever made, and what a great cast!!

James Cagney stars as Cody Jarrett, a psychotic criminal with probably the greatest mother fixation beside Tony Perkins in "Psycho".

We are quickly introduced into how Jarrett operates during a crime on a train. One of the members is burned by a blast of stream from the engine and Cody orders his men to leave him to die.

The police hunt Jarrett and his men. A policeman named Philip Evans (John Archer) leads the charge to get Cody, but he proves to be a very smart enemy with the help of his mother played by Margaret Wycherly.

Cody eventually sets it up so he is arrested for a minor crime in another state and then plots his escape from prison for a huge chemical plant payroll robbery.

This is a very simplified synopsis of the movie, as it is very complex and twisted. This was made at a time when Hollywood knew how to make movies and men were men and women were women. It's an all time classic that shouldn't be missed by any film noir or classic movie fan.

The rest of the cast includes Edmond O' Brien, Virginia Mayo, Steve Cochran, Fred Clarke, Claudia Barrett, Wally Cassell and Marshall Bradford. This is a highly recommended movie, and it is Cagney's greatest performance bar none. Top of the Wolrd ma!!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO...

Sofia Vergara is 52, Robert Pine is 83, and Jessica Simpson is 44.