Sunday, December 25, 2011

Phil sees THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO at the Camera 7 Pruneyard-December 24, 2011

As I've said numerous times before, I'm not a big fan of remakes. A lot of the are very unnecessary, and the end results are just appalling and forgettable. Some of them are so bad I sometimes find myself laughing during the film. But every know and then there are remakes that trump the original (John Carpenter's THE THING and David Cronenberg's THE FLY come to mind). The second film I saw today THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO is a perfect example of a remake that falls in the later category.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2011)
The film focuses on Mikael Blomkvist (Daniel Craig), a disgraced, left-wing liberal journalist who is in mist of being sued for slander, is hired by retired industrialist Henrik Vanger (Christopher Plummer) to investigate and solve the murder of his niece Harriet Vanger, who disappeared almost 40 years ago. In need of assistance, Mikael is paired with 24 year-old computer hacker Lisbeth Salander (Rooney Mara). Soon they both encounter the truth behind Harriet's disappearance, and come face to face with the infamous "killer of women."

I have seen the original Swedish films when they were first released and these were dark, intense, violent, and brutal films to watch. When I first heard about the American remakes, I thought they was no way that they would be made. No way in Hell would the MPAA allow the film to be released in theaters here in America. However once I heard that director David Fincher (Zodiac, Se7en, The Social Network) was on board to helm the remake, I knew this was going to work. But I had no idea how incredible the film would be.

Right from the offset of the film, watching the opening credits with the Yeah Yeah Yeah's Karen O howling her rendition of Led Zepplin's classic "Immigrant Song" while computer images of sheer black leather are animated to resemble the characters in the film, I knew I was going to see something dark, ominous, and bleak. The film stays very faithful to Stieg Larsson's Swedish serial-killer novel and credit goes to Fincher, he doesn't shy away from the taboo elements of the novel: rape, torture, bigotry and murder are left intact and the camera unflinchingly captures this. Add that the film was shot entirely in Sweden, giving the film the authenticity of the novel and the original films.

Craig does a great job of portraying Mikael, bringing intelligence and but Craig still looks too cool and isn't as vulnerable as Michael Nyqvist, the actor in the original Swedish version. This is my only nit-pick about Craig, but you have to give Mara high praise for taking on such a dark, morbid, and fierce role. Portraying Lisbeth is not an easy task, given that Swedish actress Noomi Rapace has made that character an instant international icon. But Mara pulls it off; brooding, insane, intelligent, and tattoos and piercings has never looked sexier. Her scenes are not what most Hollywood actresses can or could handle. The infamous rape scene is brutal to watch, and one cannot watch this without flinching and becoming sick with disgust. Mara handles the intense subject matter with believability and her revenge scene is precise and just. Also Mara took her role of Lisbeth very seriously: all the piercings she sports in the film are real not cosmetic simulations! She got the piercings in a series of sessions in both Brooklyn and Sweden. Now how's that to commitment!

THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO is one of the best films to be released this holiday season! The movie's a beautifully filmed nightmare showcasing the dark side of humanity; a bleak and grotesque examination of all the things that is wrong with man. It is the perfect anti-Christmas film, so after spending the holidays with your family, go see this film and be thankful that you aren't related to these people. Five out of five stars!! Two very big thumbs up!!


THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO is currently playing in theaters nationwide, including the Camera Cinemas here in the South Bay. To view showtimes, visit their website at www.cameracinemas.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Phil sees THE ARTIST at the Camera 7 Pruneyard-December 24, 2011

I have been dying to see this film! Now you all know that I am an avid silent film fan. I mean, I volunteer at the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum for crying out loud. Now I first became aware of this film when I went to Southern California for my vacation back in September. My friend that I was staying showed me the trailer for the film and I was totally blown away! Just by the trailer! I couldn't believe that someone actually made a silent film ON PURPOSE! That sounded very exciting to me. With the release of Martin Scorsese's new film HUGO, now it seems to be that silent films are once again back in style. And with this film THE ARTIST, movie goers are going to be surprised at just how amazing silent films are!

Theatrical Movie Poster (2011)
Set in Hollywood between 1927-1932, the film follows silent movie star George Valentin (Jean Dujardin) who just happens to be THE biggest movie star in Hollywood. After the preview of his newest film A Russian Affair, he starts posing for the paparazzi when he accidentally meets a woman, Peppy Miller (Bérénice Bejo), a fan who gets swept up in the moment and poses with George for the paparazzi. Peppy uses this exposure to kick start her fledgling acting career. Her first bit part is along side George in his new film. But Kinograph Studios boss Al Zimmer (John Goodman) takes his studio in a whole new direction: talkies! Soon George's career ends while Peppy's takes off into the stratosphere, but she never forgot who gave her her big break. Soon their paths crossed once again, and this time, she repays him and gives him his break that she owed him.

The filmmakers clearly did their homework when they made the film. First off, the film is shot like the old silent films: in real black-and-white film in the 1.33 aspect ratio. The set designs in the film were dead on, recapturing the look of Hollywood (filming took place during seven weeks on location in Los Angeles).  Director Michel Hazanavicius (OSS 117: Lost in Rio, OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies) had always wanted to make a silent film, and his love for these lost classics can be seen in every single frame of this film. This was a labor of love, and he did extensive research about 1920s Hollywood, and studied silent films to find the right techniques to make the story comprehensible without having to use too many intertitles. There were quite a few German films that used this technique as well, like F.W. Murnau's 1927 classic SUNRISE and Arthur Robinson, whose 1923 silent film WARNING SHADOWS didn't have any intertitles at all.

Hazanavicius played various music from classic Hollywood films while the actors performed, much like they did back in the silent film days. Dujardin channels Douglas Fairbanks: suave, arrogant, athletic, with a pinch of humor for good measure. At one point in the film, George is watching one of his silent films (Zorro to be exact) and what I loved was that it really was the Douglas Fairbanks film that we were seeing. Very clever of Hazanavicius to sneak that in. Also one cannot forget Bejo, whose Peppy radiates life, youth, and becomes the face of change as she becomes the darling of the new talking Hollywood. Bejo give Peppy that innocence, the wholesome image that catapults her to becoming "America's sweetheart," a title that once belonged to Mary Pickford, who was also married to Fairbanks. Is it me or do I see a similarity here?

Now, as we say over at the museum, silent films were never silent, for they had the best musicians bringing these images to life. Composer Ludovic Bource’s continuous score is just absolutely amazing; it compliments the film perfectly, without going too overboard. It really is one of the best scores I have ever heard.

THE ARTIST is superb film; a crowning achievement in cinema as it beautifully recaptures the silent film era while simultaneously bringing it for 21st Century audiences to experience. As I said earlier, silent films are making a comeback, so next time you go tot the movies, instead of seeing the same 'ol blockbuster, go see this film, and be prepared to see how fantastic silent films are. Five out of five stars!! Highly recommended!!


THE ARTIST is currently playing in theaters nationwide, including at the Camera Cinemas here in the South Bay. To view showtimes, visit their website at www.cameracinemas.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil goes Bollywood: Phil watches SINGH IS KINNG (2008)-December 21, 2011

Welcome back to my Bollywood adventures! Tonight's film came to me as recommendation form one of my buyers from work. Happily to receive his list of favorites (one of them was JAB WE MET), his second pick for me was SINGH IS KINNG, a slapstick comedy about mobsters, family, and falling in love with your soul mate who's engaged to the wrong guy.

Theatrical Indian Movie Poster (2008)
Happy Singh (Akshay Kumar) lives in a small village called Panchayat in Punjab. Even though he means well (by being kind and helpful to others), he ends up causing more harm than good. But when the community gets news that one of their residents, Lakhanpal Singh, is an underworld don in Australia, they chose Happy to counsel him, but the main reason is so to get rid of him. Due to a mix-up, both Happy and his escort end up in Egypt, where he meets Sonia (Katrina Kaik), a criminologist who prefers to have criminals killed than reformed. Both friends do find their way to Australia, where they locate Lakhanpal (Sonu Sood), but he isn't to kind of them so he sends them away. Luckily Happy befriends a boutique owner and end up living in her house.When rival goons attack Lakhanpal, Happy rescues him, and gets him hospitalized. Lakhanpal does recover, but is paralyzed. His goons comically misunderstand that he wants Happy to be Don, and he undergoes a transformation and moves in to live a wealthy lifestyle in Lakhanpal's mansion. When the boutique owner's daughter returns home along with her fiancé Punit, Happy plans a charade to make her believe that the mansion belongs to her. However Happy's life is turned upside down when the daughter turns out to be Sonia herself. Knowing of Sonia's dislike for criminals, he will have no option but to plan a lavish wedding for her, while rival gangsters, and even some of Lakhanpal's goons, plan to get rid of him.

While the film tries to implore several different genres (action, comedy, romance and gangster films), the execution of all these ingredients doesn't blend fully. While Kumar and Kaik have great chemistry together (both starred in 2007's NAMASTEY LONDON), the film is a little all over the place and doesn't gel altogether. Now the film isn't a bad film: it contains some great and catchy songs and the dancing is incredible. My favorite song/dance scene is when they are in Egypt and we see them sing and dance among the ruins of the pyramids. To me this was entertaining because we see two different cultures acknowledging one another. Also there are some fine acting in the film, but to me, it felt a little off. It was a slapstick comedy with not much slapstick in it. It was a romance film that had it but wasn't too believable. It had the rules of a gangster film: a family with a Godfather who controls everything, his kids and goons serve him without question, loyalty and family are a must. And director Anees Bazmee keep the film light, fun, and entertaining, it felt flat. Maybe it's me. Maybe because I've watched so many Bollywood films as of late, the previous film all had elements to them that made me stand up and take notice. With this film, I didn't really care. Yes it has the happy ending like most films in Bollywood, but it was anticlimactic.

Also known as S.I.K. the film was released to theaters in India on August 8, 2008. The film did very well at the boxoffice (earning $23.73 million at the boxoffice on a budget of $9.5 million). It is the 16th highest grossing film in India at themoment. It also did record breaking business in Delhi, Rajasthan and East Punjab whereas the rest of India it did good business. Here in North America it grossed $1.1 million in the first weekend while over in the UK, it grossed approximately $1 million.

SINGH IS KINNG isn't a bad film, nor is it a good film. It's just there. Whether I like it or not, you should watch the film for yourself as come up with your own conclusion. I encourage all of you out there to have your own opinions. I'd like to hear them.


SINGH IS KINNG is currently available on DVD and can be purchased at your local retailer or at the Amazon website. To purchase a copy visit http://www.amazon.com/

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Phil reviews FRANKENHOOKER Blu-Ray for THE MIDNIGHT HORROR SINEMA SHOW-December 19, 2011

So I just finished my first review for my new horror blog THE MIDNIGHT HORROR SINEMA SHOW. For tonight, I reviewed the 1990 cult classic FRANKENHOOKER, which was just released on Blu-Ray by the fine folks at Synapse Films. Please click here to read about it. Also while your there, sign up to follow my blog, as I plan to review, critique and recommend some of the wildest, zaniest, scariest, and craziest films ever made!

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Phil attends COMEDY SHORTS NIGHT at the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum-December 17, 2011

Yes friends it's that time again! Time for Comedy Shorts Night at the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum, located at the historic Edison Theatre in Downtown Niles. Once again I visited my good friend Heather at Bronco Billy's Pizza Palace where I chowed down on the best food in town! After my delicious dinner, I strolled on over the museum, where laughter was to be had by all. As usual, four short films were shown with a brief intermission between them. Judy Rosenberg was on the piano. The first two short films up were:

THE CURE (1917): Starring Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, and Eddie Campbell. Chaplin is an alcoholic who checks into a health spa to get sober, however he bring along his trunk which is full of liquor. There he falls for Purviance, who is being hounded by Campbell. However during this courtship, when Chaplin's liquor finds its way into the fountain, it's a raging party that gets out of hand! The film was written and directed by Chaplin. Also known as THE WATER CURE, the film was released by Mutual Films on April 16, 1917.

THERE AIN'T NO SANTA CLAUS (1926): Starring Charley Chase, Eugenia Gilbert, and Noah Young. In the film Charley is a poor schmuck who holds out on the rent so he can by his wife an $80 watch. Unfortunately, the landlord's son discovers the watch and he takes it from him. He also gets a hold of Charley's presents and his Santa Claus beard. Things look bad for Charley, but then good fortune shines on him as the watchmaker informs him that the watch he sold him a cheapo and gives Charley the real watch. Directed by James Parrott (Charley's brother) the film was produced by Hal Roach Studios and released to theaters by MGM on December 12, 1926.

After a brief intermission, the show continued with:

THE SCARECROW (1920): Starring Buster Keaton, Sybil Seely, and Joe Roberts. Both Keaton and Roberts live in a cottage that is well equipped with mechanical devices that makes life easy. However, these two friends are also rivals as they fight over the hand of the farmer's very cute daughter Seely. At one point both Roberts and her father (Keaton's father Joe Keaton) chase good 'ol Buster, and so he disguises as a scarecrow, which causes some hilarious sight gags. A true Keaton classic silent comedy! Written and directed by Keaton and Edward F. Cline, the film was produced by Joesph M. Schenck Productions and was released to theaters on December 22, 1920.

BIG BUSINESS (1929): Starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, and James Finlayson. The Boys are Christmas Salesmen in sunny California. They ring on the doorbell of Finlayson, and this is where all the fun begins. Damaging private and personal property has never been this hysterical! For years Hal Roach told the story that the crew went to the wrong house and the owners came back to find their home completely destroyed. Whether this is true or not, it's still funny to hear. The film was produced by Hal Roach Studios and released by MGM to theaters on April 20, 1929.

Another fun night at the museum! If you would like to learn more about the museum, their film schedule, and how to become a member, visit their website at www.nilesfilmmuseum.org

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Phil sees YOUNG ADULT at the Camera 12-December 17, 2011

After seeing BEING ELMO: A PUPPETEER'S JOURNEY at the Camera 3, I walked over to the Camera 12 and saw another great film. Starring the beautiful and talented Charlize Theron, YOUNG ADULT is the newest film by director Jason Reitman and screenwriter Diablo Cody, the creative team that brought us the Academy award-winning film JUNO.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2011)
In the film Theron portrays recently divorced Mavis Gary, a Minneapolis based author of young adult books and a ranging alcoholic who returns to her hometown of Mercury, Minnesota to win back her high school sweetheart Buddy Slade (Patrick Wilson). However, Buddy his happily married to his wife Beth (Elizabeth Reaser) who has just given birth to their first child. But in Mavis' eyes, this is just a small hurdle as she plans to reclaim her love. The only other person in on her plan is Matt Freehauf (Patton Oswalt) who she meets at her old bar haunt and strikes up an unusual friendship. Mavis sinks and goes to great hilarious lengths to reclaim her former boyfriend.

Here is a film that reminds us the sometimes its' best not to live in the past for too long. Theron's Mavis is obsessed with her past, reliving her glory days right at the beginning of the film, as she drives back to Mercury while listening to a mixed tape that reminds her of her Buddy. Mavis is somewhat taken back of  how small and pathetic her hometown is still. Theron's performance is fantastic, portraying Mavis with humor, nastiness, and with a touch of vulnerability. She still thinks she's more popular than anyone else and still acts like the world revolves around her. Her dependency on alcohol is hilarious, whether she's at her local dive bar to Buddy's daughter's naming party. But on the flipside, Mavis is shown to be unhappy, even through she claims she's busy with work and says that Buddy is "trapped" in his marriage and that she can free him. But free him from what? A happy life, a beautiful wife, and a beautiful child? Things for Buddy are great, which only makes Mavis even more upset and more determined to steal Buddy back.

Both Reitman and Cody have done a marvelous job at creating this very funny and very dark comedy that I thoroughly enjoyed watching. I could really relate to Mavis: I too sometimes live in the past. Sometimes we all do this to hide from the present. Sometimes we really wish we could relive old glory days, thinking that those were our best days. But we have to remember that the best days are still in front of us. We just have to remember that it's nice to visit the past from time to time, but those of you who live there will miss out on their future.

YOUNG ADULT is one of the best dark comedies to be released this year. Funny and yet sad, comical and sometimes painful, the film casts a mirror to those of us who are Mavis' age. This reviewer is pushing 40, but I still have hope that even though life is troubling right now, it will get better. Four out of five stars!


YOUNG ADULT is currently playing in theaters nationwide, including at the Camera Cinemas here in the South Bay. To view showtimes, visit their website at www.cameracinemas.com.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil sees BEING ELMO: A PUPPETEER'S JOURNEY at the Camera 3-December 17. 2011

So It's been a long time since I went to the theaters and saw a movie. My real job is in sales, so I've been putting in a lot of hours during the day, then come home and finish up on work emails and other paperwork. So for the past several blogs I've been reviewing films that I would watch while working at home, hence the B-movies, horror flicks, and the Bollywood films. Well today I finally got out of the house and saw some films in the theater! So I headed back to my old stopping ground: The Camera Cinemas in Downtown San Jose. The first film I saw was at the Camera 3 called BEING ELMO: A PUPPETEER'S JOURNEY, a fascinating documentary about the life of Kevin Clash, the man behind Elmo.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2011)
The film tells Clash's amazing rise from his humble beginnings in Baltimore, Maryland to becoming a member of Jim Henson's  troupe and the phenomenon of his beloved SESAME STREET character Elmo. While in school, Clash would be picked on by other kids. He didn't play sports, he made puppets, due to his love of Jim Henson and his shows SESAME STREET and THE MUPPET SHOW. Jocks would tease him, saying that he was playing with dolls. However, both his parents would encourage him to follow his dream. The love and support from his parents would give him the confidence to audition for his local Channel 2 station where his career would begin. Soon he found himself working on the CAPTAIN KANGAROO SHOW as well as THE GREAT SPACE COASTER. Eventually his journey would also lead him to befriending Kermit Love, the man who helped create Henson's puppets. Through his friendship with Love, he was given the opportunity to become one of Henson's puppeteers, working along side with Henson himself and also with Frank Oz, Marty Robinson, and others. The film also shows the origin of Elmo, who was once just a simpleton character that Clash took over and transformed the puppet to one of the most recognized muppet on SESAME STREET.

The film is a perfect example of following your dreams and sticking to that dream. Clash is now a vital part of SESAME STREET: being the show's writer, producer, and director. But the film also showcases the downside of fame, from his divorce of his wife and his absence of his daughter's life. Though the film is just a mere 78 minutes, it really packs everything you wanted to know about Clash and how he has enchanted, entertained, and enriched the lives of children from all over the world.

BEING ELMO: A PUPPETEER'S JOURNEY is a heartfelt movie, a film that shows us how one person really can make a difference in the world! If you see this film playing where you live, you really should see it. The film also speaks to the child in us all, so have daydreaming again. And remember you're never too old to still play with dolls.


BEING ELMO: A PUPPETEER'S JOURNEY is currently playing in select theaters nationwide, including at the Camera Cinemas here in the South Bay. To view showtimes, visit their website at www.cameracinemas.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil launcehs his horror movie blog THE MIDNIGHT HORROR SINEMA SHOW-December 17, 2011

As I stated in a previous blog, I was toying with the idea of starting a new blog dedicated exclusively to horror, cult films, B-movies, and so forth. So after some positive feedback from friends, I present to you THE MIDNIGHT HORROR SINEMA SHOW! Sign up today and see what the horror is all about!

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Phil goes Bollywwod: Phil watches PROVOKED (2006)-December 14, 2011

Tonight's film isn't your average Bollywood film. In fact, it isn't a Bollywood film at all. There are no song and dance numbers, no beautiful shots of India's majestic countrysides, no romantic love story, and no happy ending. This film is based on a true story and it deals with some serious issues and topics: murder, injustice, faith, and spousal abuse. Not the usual fare that one would expect from a Indian film, but nonetheless, an incredible and important film to see. Starring the amazing Aishwarya Rai, the film PROVOKED grabs your attention from the very start and doesn't let go till the final frame.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2006)
The film is based on the true story of Kiranjit Ahluwalia (Rai), a Punjabi woman who moved to London after marrying her new husband Deepak Ahluwalia (Naveen Andrews). All seems fine in the beginning, but his true nature is revealed, and soon Kiranjit is subjected to physical abuse, his drinking and sleeping with other women, and also rape. After ten years and two children, Kiranjit has reached her breaking point after suffering another beating two hour earlier, and sets her abusive husband on fire, which leads him to his death. In a blatant mistrial, she is found guilty of murder and is sentenced to life in prison. However, coming to her aid are the Southall Black Sisters, which fights against domestic violence, and they help Kiranjit get a retrial. She is released after spending 3 1/2 years in prison and is reunited with her children.

This film was a complete shock, considering what I have been watching up to this point. Rai was very good in the film, and what really impressed me was how I could see her dancing around and being funny and sexy in one film and then see her in this film which is a complete 180! Here Rai is plain: no make up, her hair unglamorous, and looking like like she has just gone through Hell. She literally become Kiranjit and is just riveting to watch. I love horror films, but nothing can compare to the horrors of domestic violence, not to mention being raped by your husband. The film is amazing, and Rai is just incredible! Outstanding performance!

The film was released in the United Kingdom on April 6, 2007 to mixed reviews. I personally really enjoyed the film, as it shines on really important issues and such. Some critics panned Rai's performance, saying that her, "acting is frustratingly passive." Now we all know the old saying, "Everybody's a critic" but let me say this: we all have our opinions. Some people will like this movie, others might not. But never let other people influence your decision of what films to see. See everything and anything, just once to see whether you'll like it or not. Remember never judge a book by its cover, or in this case never judge a film by its poster.

PROVOKED is a powerful and moving film, and one of Aishwarya Rai's best films. If you want to see a film that really tries to make a difference in the world, then see this film! Five out of five stars!


PROVOKED is currently available on DVD and can be purchased at your local video retailer or at Amazon. Visit their website at www.amazon.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Phil goes Bollywood: Phil watches DHOOM 2: BACK IN ACTION (2006)-December 13, 2011

While on my travels in India en route to Bollywood, I found another great high octane, action packed film, courtesy of my very good friend Heather in Niles! Known as D:2, D2, and D2: BACK IN ACTION in India, but the full title of the film is DHOOM 2: BACK IN ACTION!

Theatrical Indian Movie Poster (2006)
In part two of the series, Newly promoted A.C.P. officers Jai Dixit (Abhishek Bachchan) and his partner Ali (Uday Chopra) are on their biggest case to date: to capture the international master criminal known as "Mr. A" (Aryan Singh), who plans on stealing a rare and priceless artifact in Mumbai. Jai and Ali, along with fellow officer Sonali Bose (Bipasha Bau), fail to capture him, but he meets his match when he encounters the mysterious Sunehri (the beautiful Aishwarya Rai), and soon they form a partnership as they make their way to Rio for their next job. However, both Jai and Ali and their friend Monali Bose (Bau playing both roles) are hot on the duo's trail. To make things even more complicated, Sunehri isn't really who she says she is either, which sends Mr. A (real name Aryan) off the deep end.

Wow! This film really packs a punch on all levels, thanks to the film's director Sanjay Gadhvi (DHOOM, KIDNAP)! First the film has a very highly stylized look: fast camera panning, quick edits, fast paced car chases, martial arts action, gun fights, hot women and incredible music and dance numbers! But again it's Aishwarya Rai that's just captures your attention! Stunning, seductive, an oh so damn sexy! And also the woman can act and dance her booty off! The film's awesome, but men everywhere will see the film because of Rai. She is that gorgeous and that talented!

The film was released to theaters in India on November 24, 2006 and immediately became a boxoffice hit. It became the highest grossing Indian film of 2006 and and remains in the top ten on the list of highest-grossing Bollywood films in India. DHOOM:3, the final installment of the series, is set for release in 2013.

DHOOM 2: BACK IN ACTION is one helluva action film! Fans of the DIE HARD, LETHAL WEAPON, and BAD BOYS series will love this film. Five out of five stars!


DHOOM 2: BACK IN ACTION is currently available on DVD and can be purchased at your local video retailer or at Amazon. Visit their website at www.amazon.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Phil contemplates on starting a Horror Film Blog-December 12, 2011

This idea of starting a horror film blog has been dancing around in my head for the past several months. However, it wasn't til this past October when I did my horror film marathon that the idea reared its grotesque head back at me, knowing that I had unleashed it from Pandora's Box. Plus, some of you out there enjoyed my horror film reviews, and were really impressed with my horror knowledge. But I always told myself that IF I did start another blog, it would be dedicated to not just my love of horror films, but those films that are only shown in the dark shadows of theaters, hiding in amenity, kept in secret, nobody paying any attention to them whatsoever.....until now!

Horror films are only one of my passions. This new blog would also showcase my love of low budget B-movies such as VICE ACADEMY, CANNIBAL WOMEN IN THE AVOCADO JUNGLE OF DEATH, and HOLLYWOOD CHAINSAW HOOKERS. Classic roadshow films like THE WAGES OF SIN, GAMBLING WITH SOULS, and MANIAC. Crazy Asian exploitation films such as ZERO WOMAN: RED HANDCUFFS, FEMALE PRISONER: CAGED, and GIRL BOSS GUERILLA. Traumatic Troma films like the cult classic THE TOXIC AVENGER, CLASS OF NUKE'EM HIGH, and POULTRYGEIST: NIGHT OF THE CHICKEN DEAD. Infamous exploitation films like THE VIOLENT YEARS, CHAINED GIRLS, and GIRL GANG. Sexploitation films including BAD GIRLS GO TO HELL, TRADER HORNEE, and COUNTRY CUZZINS. And of course the grindhouse films that have penetrated society like no other in these past few years. Films such as THEY CALLED HER ONE EYE, I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE, SCUM OF THE EARTH, THE CHEERLEADERS, SWITCHBLADE SISTERS, and SAVAGE STREETS. These are the type of films that I want to talk about, to review, and to share with all of you wonderful people out there in the dark!

So the question remains: should I start a new film blog dedicated to my favorite cinematic obsessions? And if I do, what should I call it?

Any ideas or suggestions would be most welcomed!!

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Phil goes Porno Chic: Phil reviews PORTRAIT OF A CALL GIRL from Elegant Angel-Dec. 10, 2011

Hello again and welcome back to another installment of Phil goes Porno Chic. Today's film comes from Elegant Angel, home of some of the best gonzo porn in the industry. However, this release marks a turning point for the company as it showcases that EA can produce extraordinary features as well. Starring the talented and charming Jessie Andrews, PORTRAIT OF A CALL GIRL solidifies my previous statement that exceptional storytelling, fine acting, and erotica can be made into works of art.

Teaser Movie Poster (2011)
In the film Andrews portrays Elle, a sweet and somewhat naive young call girl with a past that continues to haunt her. Through her sexual journeys and experiences, she come to understand more about herself while discovering a new found freedom within her. Awakening from her fog-hazed state, she realizes all the terrible things she has done and now find herself at a crossroads that will ultimately lead her back to her past, hoping that she'll be able to set things right.

Writer/director/editor Graham Travis has made an astounding, thoughtful and sexually arousing film that contains some very dark themes and emotions: lying, cheating, self-hatred, mental, physical, and psychological abuse are just some of the issues found here. Not the typical standard porno fluff and cuteness you would come to expect. The film is dark, emotionally distraught, and sexually charged. The film goes beyond anything any adult film has done before; it delves into the human psyche and brings to light a variety of human emotions other than just lust and fantasy.

Travis' directing is very modern: containing a combination of hand held camerawork, simple set-ups, shooting at real locations, advant-garde storytelling, and sparse dialogue with quick edits and intense sex scenes filled with raw and primitive emotions rendered this reviewer speechless and aroused simultaneously. Something that I have never experienced with modern day porn. This type of film was popular during the 1970s, when adult films were experimental and could be dark, erotic, and advant-garde. Films like BEHIND THE GREEN DOOR and THE DEVIL IN MISS JONES come to mind, especially the later to which this film feels like a distant relative. And while the comparisons to Steven Soderbergh's 2009 experimental film THE GIRLFRIEND EXPERIENCE starring former porn star Sasha Grey are inevitable, any comparisons are uncalled for. While I did enjoy that film, one has to remember that in Soderbergh's film, Grey is an emotionally dead call girl, while Andrews is exploring a full ray of emotions while having some hot, raw, and emotionally charged sex.

Original DVD Cover Artwork (2011)
And speaking of Andrews, her performance in the film was riveting. What gives it away are her big, beautiful eyes; those eyes are so expressive that you can tell that she was always in character. The dynamic range of emotions that Andrews had to convey is mind blowing as she nailed each scene with pose and realism. One of my favorite scenes are her just walking aimlessly around Los Angeles, as if she has lost her way in life and doesn't know where to go. Another one is when she is in the movie theater and begins to cry, as if the movie she's watching is projecting her haunting past: a dysfunctional family, poverty, isolation and her abusive treatment toward her boyfriend. Her saddened face is heart-wrenching, tears pouring down her face, Elle realizes that her past will not go away, no matter how far away she runs from it. Here Andrews makes us sympathize with her and her inner turmoil. We have all had to deal with aspect of our past that we would wish to go away. With Elle, Andrews commands our attention as we learn more about her as we do with understanding ourselves.

Andrews is the only one having sex in the film, and each sex scene offers a little something for everyone. An incredible oral scene in the beginning, which is also one of my favorite scene for this one reason: the camera stays on Andrews through the whole scene. It doesn't cut away to the guy at all, it stays, actually lingers, on Andrews, giving us the illusion that we are that man in the hotel room. Other sex scenes include a raw, rough, and intense session with Manual Ferrara, a hot, steamy threesome and an incredible six-man blowbang. But give credit to Mr. Travis, he is able to have all this hot, mind blowing sex without sacrificing the film's story. The sex is blended seamlessly into the continuity and it is just amazing to watch. Usually in most adult films, there's the standard, generic, two-dimensional dialogue that sets up the sex scene to follow. However in this case, the sex is part of the story. Like the classics, it's a film that has sex in it. Take the sex out and you still have an enlightening film (FYI: Disc 2 of the DVD set contains the film without the sex, so you can see what I'm talking about).

PORTRAIT OF A CALL GIRL is a masterpiece of adult cinema; emotionally charged, haunting and visually appealing. The film is a high achievement of eroticism that recalls the classics from the Golden Age of Porn. This film is a modern day classic and if you doubt that, here's the proof: On December 6th, the Adult Video News (AVN) announced the nominees for the 2012 AVN Awards Show (the adult industry's version of the Academy Awards). PORTRAIT received 10 nominations, including Best Actress (Andrews), Best Cinematography, Best Director (Travis), and Best Feature. Look for the film win several awards this January, but in the meantime, enjoying watching it tonight. Five out of five stars!!


PORTRAIT OF A CALL GIRLS is currently available on both Blu-Ray and a 2-Disc DVD set and can be purchased on the Elegant Angel website at www.elegantangel.com. You can follow Jessie Andrews on Twitter at https://twitter.com/#!/jessieslife and check out her website at www.teamjessie.com. Follow Elegant Angel on Twitter as well at https://twitter.com/#!/ElegantAngelxxx

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Phil goes Bollywood: Phil watches ENDHIRAN aka ROBOT (2010)-December 9, 2011

Hello again folks! Yes I'm still in India, watching some amazing and spectacular Bollywood films! Today's film was a recommendation from my good friend Heather from Bronco Billy's Pizza Palace in NIles, who is a huge Bollywood fanatic and is my guide on my journey. Because of her, I wouldn't have known about the science fiction/action film ENDHIRAN aka ROBOT here in the states. So thank you Heather and here we go!

Theatrical Indian Movie Poster (2010
The film stars Rajnikanth as scientist Dr. Vaseegaran who has spent the past 10 years creating and perfecting his ultimate creation: the super-powered robot named Chitti, in his own image (Rajnikanth played both roles in the film). When he submits his invention to the Artificial Intelligence Research and Development (AIRD) Institute, headed by Dr. Bohra (Danny Denzongpa), they decline, sighting on its not having emotions and the ability to make rational judgments. But when a freak flash of lightening hits Chittit, combined with the software upgraded Vaseegaran, the robot is ability to comprehend and generate human emotions. But Vaseegaran's plans backfires when Chitti fall in love with his fiancee fiancée Sana (the exquisite Aishwarya Rai) and then both of them are fighting over here, which leads Vaseegaran to destroy Chitti. However there to pick up the pieces is the evil Dr. Bohra, who rebuilds him, complete with a new upgrade: a "red chip" that turns Chitti into a ruthless killing machine. Now fueled with hat and anger against Vaseegaran, he kidnaps Sana and creates an army of Chittit clones, fully-armed and ready to kill. Now Vaseegaran must find away to rescue Sana and stop Chittit from taking over the world.

The film makes references to other legendary Hollywood sci-fi action films; the first being the most obvious is THE TERMINATOR. And it's no coincidence either: the film marked the Indian cinema debut of Stan Winston Studios, who were responsible for the film's animatronics and visual effects. While these effects were amazing, the Chittit design leaned more towards the Robin Williams model found in his film BICENTENNIAL MAN. But besides this little nit-pick, the film is pretty damn entertaining. The film has some great CGI, especially when the army of Chitti clones become magnetized and form a giant snake and a rolling ball, complete with automatic weapons firing into the police. Of course no Bollywood film is complete with musical dance numbers, and this film contains some of the most exciting ones ever seen! From the impressive camera angles and choreography to the amazing costumes and fast editing, these scenes are sure to get you feet tapping. The film's soundtrack was composed by A. R. Rahman, who did the soundtracks for SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE and ROCKSTAR!

Rajnikanth does a great job of playing his duel roles, which is very hard to pull off. Most of the time while shooting the film, he'd be acting with nobody there. Then go for a costume change and be on the set as Chitti and try to react what he was saying as Vaseegaran. Very tough job to do indeed! But it helps to have a beautiful co-star to make it work, and Aishwarya Rai does just that! Captivating, funny, and incredibly sexy, the woman was born to be star. Rai began her career as a model before becoming an actress. Soon she was in popular demand, and has made some truly remarkable films such as BRIDE AND PREJUDICE (2004), JODHAA AKBAR (2008), and RAAVAN (2010). The film was directed by S. Shankar and was released to theaters in India on October 1, 2010.

ENDHIRAN aka ROBOT is one of the coolest and action packed sci-fi film to come from Bollwood! If you want to see something different, by all means give this film a shot!


ENDHIRAN aka ROBOT is currently available on DVD and can be purchased at your local video retailers or at Amazon. Visit their website at www.amazon.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil goes Bollywood: Phil watches JAB WE MET (2007)-December 8, 2011

Once again I traveled to that far away land in India called Bollywood where I found another priceless cinematic gem that was fun and enjoyable to watch. Starring the love of my life Kareena Kapoor, tonight's film is the romantic comedy JAB WE MET!

Theatrical Indian Movie Poster (2007)
In the film Kapoor portrays the cute, funny, quirky, carefree, feisty, and very chatty Punjab girl named Geet Kaur Dhillon, who while on a train returning home to Bhatinda meets Aditya Kashyap (Shahid Kapoor), a wealthy Mumbai-based businessman who is depressed after losing his father and being dumped by his girlfriend. After Aditya gets off the train in Bar Nagar, Geet follows him, missing her train and losing her luggage. However they make it to Bhatinda, where he meets her family, including her as well as her soon to-be betrothed, Manjeet (Veer Pratap Singh). Geet tells her family that she's marrying Aditya instead, so the family welcomes him with open arms. However Geet has a plan: she elopes with him - not to get married - but to re-locate to Manali - where her true love, Anshuman, is waiting, and who she hopes marry him. But as Aditya's life prospers, Geet's takes a turn for the worse. When her family comes looking for her, Aditya must find her and rescue her from her failed new life.

Again, Kapoor just shines as Geet: funny, witty, and just so beautiful. But when she's cast away by Anshuman, she does a complete 180, becoming sad, depressed, and reduced to a shell of her former self. A fantastic performance by Kareena Kapoor. Now the other Kappor, Shahid does a great as well; showing several different ranges of emotions as well. Both characters start off the film as emotional opposites; towards the end they end up switching places, which horrifies Aditya. Greet was his source of inspiration which enabled him to turn his life around, so he returns the favor by reminding her who she is.

Both Kreena and Shahid have great on-screen chemistry, of course it helps that this being there fourth film they starred together in. Writer and director Imtiaz Ali keeps the film light, funny, and warm hearted. Plus the dancing in the film is very impressive and the music is very catchy! Ali would go on to direct the recently released film ROCKSTAR (which was my second Bollywood film I ever saw). The film was released to theaters in India on October 26, 2007.

JAB WE MET is a fun, light-hearted, romantic comedy that will leave you with a smile on your face. Another Kapoor film to check off my list! Yes I love her! So what? Go see this film and try not to fall in love her! You can't so there! But really, check out the film. Two thumbs up!


JAB WE MET is currently available on DVD and can be purchased at your local video retailers or at Amazon. Visit their website at www.amazon.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Phil's B-Movie Madness: Phil watches SLAVE GIRLS FROM BEYOND INFINITY (1987)-December 8, 2011

I felt like keeping my B-movie theme going for tonight. Plus I was in the mood to watch the beautiful Elizabeth Kaitan again. So for tonight's second feature, I traveled into space (and back to the mid-1980s) to watch SLAVE GIRLS FROM BEYOND INFINITY.

Theatrical Movie Poster (1987)
In the distant future, two young slaves Daria (Elizabeth Kaitan) and Tisa (Cindy Beal) escape from a space gulag only to crash on a nearby planet. There they meet Zed (Don Scribner), who offers them shelter. At dinner they meet another stranded couple: brother Rik (Carl Horner) and sister Shala (Brinke Stevens). However Zed's real plan is reveled: he turns the girls and another guests loose in his jungle preserve to serve as his prey in a sadistic man hunt. Armed only with knives and their wits, the girls must battle their way across the jungle to a hidden arms cache before Zed catches and kills them both.

Again, like the previous film, it's just a wonderful excuse to switch off your brain and have fun! Kaitan is great in the film and looks so beautiful in her slave costume. But when she is clothed in her sexy lingerie outfit, I thought I was going to explode! Remember I was a teenager when this film came out, so basically I was a walking hormone with feet. Now throw in the great Brinke Stevens being held down by giant cardboard robots butt naked on a well lit table, well let's just say I took a lot of cold showers back then. However, despite being a low budget film, the sets look very cool and the costumes (bikinis for the ladies) were awesome! The film should be viewed by pre-pubescent boys everywhere!

The film was co-written and directed by Ken Dixon, who, like Rosenberg, never made another film after this one. And like her, Dixon inadvertently created a bona fide cult classic that really sums up everything that was so great about watching B-movies from the 80s. The film was released to theaters by Charles Band's Urban Classics on September 18, 1987.

SLAVE GIRLS FROM BEYOND INFINITY is classic B-movie fun for the whole family! Granted that your family is asleep and you snuck downstairs to watch this movie with the lights off and the volume turned downed low. So have fun and don't get grounded!


SLAVE GIRLS FROM BEYOND INFINITY is currently available on DVD. To purchase a copy, visit the Amazon website at www.amazon.com.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Phil's B-Movie Madness: Phil watches ASSAULT OF THE KILLER BIMBOS (1988)-December 7, 2011

As you all may have noticed, whenever I get in a particular mood for a specific genre of film, I go all out! Since my review of CHILLERAMA, I've been watching some of my all-time favorite B-movies that I enjoyed watching many years ago. A lot of these films you may have never heard of, and that's OK. This is where I come in, to help you get acquainted with these unknown classics. So tonight I revisited one of my favorites, which has the best title in cinematic history. Tonight's viewing pleasure is the cult classic ASSAULT OF THE KILLER BIMBOS!

Theatrical Movie Poster (1988)
The film follows two go-go dancers, Lulu (Elizabeth Kaitan) and Peaches (Christina Whitaker). The girls are framed for the murder of their boss Wayne-O (Nick Cassavettes) by a sleazy gangster named Vinnie (Mike Muscat) who is the real killer. On the run from the law, they stop at a diner, where they're spotted. There they pick up waitress Darlene (Tammara Souza) who inadvertently joins the group. The three girls are involved in a crazy wild car chase with cops (one of the cops is played by GREASE nerd Eddie Deezen) as they head for Mexico, where they unexpectedly find Vinnie staying at a Mexican motel with his crazed, jealous girlfriend Poodles (Patti Astor). Soon the girls hatch out a clever plot to capture Vinnie so they can clear their names.

Now it was with this film that I fell in love with Elizabeth Kaitan. She was actually born in Hungary on July 19, 1960 and was brought to New York by her mother when she was 8 years old. She moved to Manhattan at age 18 and studied acting at the New York Academy of Theatrical Arts and was a member of the repertory company the American Theatre of Arts. She made her film debut in Troma's 1981 raunchy comedy WAITRESS and her acting career began. All together Kaitan appeared in 39 films before retiring in 1999 after making her last film VERONICA 2030 by Surrender Cinema, the erotica film label created by Charles Band.

This film doesn't take itself too seriously, and that what makes it fun to watch. Sometimes it's nice to just be entertained by a great B-movie. The screenplay was written by Ted Nicolaou, who would later direct THE SUBSPECIES series for Band's Full Moon Entertainment. Believe it or not, this was only one of two films that director Anita Rosenberg made (the first was MODERN GIRL). After this she just disappeared. I tried doing some research on whatever became of her, but I couldn't find anything. A real shame though, for Rosenberg has left us a great cult classic for us to enjoy forever. The film was released by Band's old film company Empire Pictures to theaters on May 6, 1988.

ASSAULT OF THE KILLER BIMBOS is a happy, go-lucky, feel good B-movie that will keep you entertained for 90 minutes. There aren't many films out there that can make you feel this way. A great film with a great title and great acting makes this B-movie a true cult classic!


ASSAULT OF THE KILLER BIMBOS is currently available on DVD. You can purchase your copy at your local retailer or going to the Amazon website at www.amazon.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil goes Bollywood: Phil watches VEER-ZAARA (2004)-December 7, 2011

Once again I took a trip to India via the amazing Bollywood films I found at my local library. One of the film I picked up looked very interesting. A film about the various stages of love: love at first sight, unconditional love, lost love, forbidden love, and reunited love. A story about one true love, and about fighting to keep that love with you through the good times and the bad times. What would you do for your one true love? Tonight's film was one of the best love stories to come out of India. Ladies and gentlemen, please give a round of applause to director's Yash Chopra's masterpiece VEER-ZAARA.

Original India Movie Poster (2004)
Veer Pratap Singh (Shah Rukh Khan from RA.ONE and the narrator of KISMAT KONNECTION) is an Indian Air Force Squadron Leader who on a mission rescues and befriends a beautiful Pakistani heiress, Zaara Hayaat Khan (Preity Zinta), as she travels to a small Indian village to scatter the ashes of one of her family's loyal servants.Veer helps her with her travel and to repay him, she travel with him to meet his family and his village. During the trip the two fall madly in love with one another. However, Veer learns that Zaara is engaged to a evil and cruel man named Raza (Manoj Bajpai). Zaara's close friend Shabbo (Divya Dutta) contacts Veer and tells him that she wants out of her engagement and is in love with him. But when he comes to rescue her, Raza arranges Veer to be set up as a Indian spy and is sent to jail. Twenty-two years later, a young and idealistic lawyer Saamiya Siddiqui (Rani Mukherjee) discovers Veer's case and takes swift actions to set her client free, but the question still remains: whatever became of Zaara?

This was such a powerful and emotional film that I caught my tearing up throughout the film. Both Khan and Zinta have great chemistry on screen; their performances are so captivating and convincing that you'd swear you're watching them actually falling in love with one another. Within the first 30 minutes of the film you'll fall in love with them as well. Singh is proud, dashing, and strong but falls hard for Zaara, the carefree spirited soul who had no plans of ever falling in love, suddenly unable to live her life without Singh in it.

Each of these talented actors brings with them vulnerability to their characters; they are flawed, they are human, which makes them relatable to us the audience. We have had that one love that got away. I myself just recently went through this a couple of years ago. The pain I went through is the very same thing that both Veer and Zaara must suffer as well. Also Mukherjee is just as incredible and breathtaking as Zinta. A very talented up and coming actress in Bollywood.

Like other Bollywood films, there are several great musical numbers that really heighten the film's romantic love affair. Right in the beginning of the film we are introduced to Singh's musical sequence looks and it feels like it came from THE SOUND OF MUSIC: sweeping hills of green grass, saturated color, the wind blowing Singh's hair in the wind while he sings about finding love, only for the scene to end with a sound of a gunshot. Then cut to seeing Singh, looking haggard and unkempt as he rots away in a cold, dark prison cell. Credit to director Chopra for creating simply a magnificent film! The movie was released in India to theaters on November 14, 2004.

VEER-ZAARA is one of the greatest romance films ever made; touching, emotional and honest. The film will make you feel like you are watching art. It doesn't matter what country your from or what language you speak, we all understand the language of love. Five out of five stars!


VEER-ZAARA is currently available on DVD and can be purchased on the Amazon website by visiting www.amazon.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil's Horror Watch: Entry 33: Phil watches CREEPOZOIDS (1987)-December 7, 2011

After watching director David DeCoteau's B-movie classic SORORITY BABES IN THE SLIMEBALL BOWL-O-RAMA the other night, I decided to watch another one of his films. After all, I had forgotten just how much fun they are to watch. So for today I headed back to 1987 to watch the scary and horrifying film called CREEPOZOIDS!

Theatrical Movie Poster (1987)
Set in the apocalyptic future year of 1998 (our old future), six years after the nuclear wars has reduced the world to rubble and ashes. A group of army deserters (which includes Linnea Quigley) take refuge from an acid rain storm in a seemingly abandoned laboratory complex. However, they soon discover that the lab was a top-secret government research center, where a hideous genetically-engineered monster still lurks. Now they must fight for survival against the creature called the Creepozoid!

This is a perfect example of a great cheesy B-movie to watch! Once again DeCoteau does a fantastic job of directing and really keeps the pace of the film moving. It doesn't stop or drag at any real spot. The film also boasts some really cool scares and sick gore, courtesy of some amazing special effects. Even the creature is nothing more than a guy in a rubber suit, but it looks awesome on film! Also keep your eyes peeled for some ugly mutant rats in the film , as they attack our army deserters. Plus it has a very creepy and disturbing ending that kinda freaked me out when I first saw it. And again, after all these years, it's still damn creepy!

While all this makes it sound like a winner, what most people remember about the film is the shower scene with Linnea Quigley. Yes, it is that hot and steamy, and no it wasn't because of the water people. It is one of the sexiest shower scenes ever captured on celluloid! I myself use to rewind that scene constantly, eventually wearing out that part of the film on my VHS. So as a result, I had to buy the film again. But after all this time, the film as a whole still holds up today, even though is was such a low budget film. According to DeCoteau, the film was shot in 15 days with a budget of only $150, 000! The film was released to theaters by Urban Classics (Charles Band's company) on October 2, 1987.

CREEPOZOIDS is probably one of the most under-rated films of the late 1980s. The film has it all: horror, action, science fiction, nudity, mutant rats, violence, military experiment creature gone amok, gore, and Linnea Quigley's infamous shower scene! What more could you ask from a B-movie? So what are you waiting for? Go check out this classic film tonight!


CREEPOZOIDS is currently available on DVD at your local retailer. You can also purchase a copy on the Amazon website at www.amazon.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil's B-Movie Madness: Phil watches SORORITY BABES IN THE SLIMEBALL BOWL-O-RAMA-December 5, 2011

Yes, the title for tonight's movie is more than a mouthful. And yes, let me assure you that this is a real movie, and it's also one of my favorites. During the mid-80s, there was a bevy of B-movies to be found at my local Mom & Pop video store, which starred the hottest and most popular Scream Queens during this time. However, I originally saw this on the late night cable show USA UP ALL NIGHT, and I immediately fell in love with the film. So for tonight, I decided to stroll down Memory Lane to my teenage years to once again bare witness to the horror cult classic that is SORORITY BABES IN THE SLIMEBALL BOWL-O-RAMA!

Theatrical Movie Poster (1988)
Three frat boys Calvin (Andras Jones), Jimmie (Hal Havins), and Keith (John Stuart Wildman) sneak into the Tri-Delta sorority to witness the initiation of two new pledges Taffy (Brinke Stevens) and Lisa (Michelle Bauer). However the boys are busted by sorority sisters Rhonda (Kathi O'Brecht), Frankie (Carla Baron), and den mother Babs Peterson (Robin Stille billed as Robin Rochelle). As punishment, Babs sends the new pledges and the unwanted frat boys to the local bowling lane to steal a trophy. There the group meets Spider (Linnea Quigley) who is robbing the bowling alley. However an accident causes the trophy to break open, releasing an evil imp who then begins wreaking havoc by granting wishes that have dire consequences.

The film was directed by David DeCoteau, who was one of the Top Three B-movie directors during the 80s (the other two being Rick Sloane and Fred Olen Ray). DeCoteau has directed several low-budget classics from the 80s, such as CREEPOZOIDS, NIGHTMARE SISTERS, DR. ALIEN. DeCoteau would also go on to direct films for Charles Band's company Full Moon Entertainment: PUPPET MASTER III (1991), BEACH BABES FROM BEYOND (1993), THE KILLER EYE (1999), and newest installment of Full Moon's flagship title,  2010's PUPPET MASTER: AXIS OF EVIL. All together, DeCoteau has directed over 80 films in his career!

Another interesting and noteworthy fact is that this was the first film that had all three of the legendary Scream Queens together at once. Quigley, Stevens, and Bauer were at that time the biggest names in the B-movie universe. They appeared in countless films during the 1980s, however it was DeCoteau who was able to bring these ladies together in one film. He would do this again with NIGHTMARE SISTERS that same year, and almost 25 years later, DeCoteau would reunite them again in his upcoming film COUGAR CULT! This film had a limited theatrical release on January 29, 1988, courtesy of Band's Urban Classics label. It was later released on VHS and was in the 1990s a staple on the USA cable's late night movie show UP ALL NIGHT.

SORORITY BABES IN THE SLIMEBALL BOWL-O-RAMA is one of best B-movies to come out of the 1980s! While the film seems tame compare to today's standards, but what makes it so much fun was there's a touch of innocence to it. These films were just innocent fun and unfortunately they don't make 'em like this anymore. So if you're looking for a midnight movie to watch, give this film a whirl and have fun! Just let any imps out of bowling trophies!


SORORITY BABES IN THE SLIMEBALL BOWL-O-RAMA is currently available on DVD. You can purchase a copy at your local retailer or visit the Amazon website at www.amazon.com.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Phil's Horror Watch: Entry 32: Phil watches CHILLERAMA (2011)-December 3, 2011

Hello there my faithful followers and welcome to the return of Phil's Horror Watch! Now there's quite a lot of you out there that deep down inside, whether you want to admit it or not, are big time horror fans. And a lot of you really enjoyed my month-long horror movie marathon back in October. So tonight I decided to "resurrect" the series, picking up right where I left off in October. Now with this new installment, I couldn't help but review tonight's movie. Directed by four of the freshest, talented, and twisted new voices of horror comes the horrifying, the grotesque, the disturbing, and the hilarious film called CHILLERAMA!!

Theatrical Movie Poster (2011)
So here is the plot in a nutshell: It's the closing night of the last drive-in theater in America and Cecil B. Kaufman (Richard Riehle) has planned the ultimate movie marathon: screening four long lost horror films to his faithful drive-in patrons. These films so rare that they have never been shown publicly ever in America until this very special night! Sounds like it's gonna be a fun-filled night right? So what could possibly go wrong you might ask? Everything and anything!

In the tradition of classic anthology films such as TALES FROM THE CRYPT and CREEPSHOW, the film offers four different tales of terror brought to life by four talented directors. These films push the envelope with their subject matter, their gratuitous amounts of gore and sexual innuendos, bad jokes, and their blatant disregard of moral and god taste. So you know you're gonna have a good time! The film offers these cinematic gems:

WADZILLA: Directed by Adam Rifkin (DETROIT ROCK CITY), the film's about a middle-aged man named Miles Munson (Rifkin) whose personal physician Dr. Weems (Ray Wise) prescribes him the experimental drug Spermupermine to strengthen the sperm Miles already produces. However the side effect is that the drug increases the size of his one good sperm to mammoth proportions! This hilarious tribute to 50s monster movies boasts a really fun cast (which includes Sarah Mutch, Owen Benjamin, Tracy Dawson, Lin Shaye, and the great Eric Roberts) and amazing special effects by The Chiodo Brothers (Stephan, Charles, and Edward), the creative guys who brought us the cult classic KILLER KLOWNS FROM OUTER SPACE. A great film to kick things off with!

I WAS A TEENAGE WEREBEAR: Written and directed by Tim Sullivan (2001 MANIACS series), this loving musical tribute and spoof of classic teen films such as REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE, GREASE, and TWILIGHT is set in 1962 in sunny Southern California and focuses on a sexually confused teen named Ricky (ex-porn star Sean Paul Lockheart) who becomes a harry, leather clad werebear after being bitten on the ass during a wrestling match by bad boy rebel Talon (Anton Troy). Sullivan also wrote the songs in the film, like "Love Bit Me On The Ass," "Purge This Urge," and "Do The Werebear." Sullivan, who is openly gay, included many gay culture references in his film, such as bears which are "big hairy burly men" in the gay community. Kudos to Mr. Sullivan being brave enough and exposing horror fans to the queer subculture. The film also includes actors Gabby West (winner of the TV reality series SCREAM QUEENS), Adam Robitel, Lin Shaye (again) and Ron Jeremy (on the cover of a bear magazine, of course).

THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANKENSTEIN: Written and directed Adam Green (HATCHET series, FROZEN), this black and white film is about Hitler "trying to create the perfect killing machine to win the war." Joel David Moore hams it up as Hitler, reducing him to a hilarious parody. During the making of the film, Green on purpose had Moore not learn any German. While the cast were German actors and spoke fluent German, Moore's sexy co-star Kristine Klebe (Eva Braun) only taught him how to say stupid, irrelevant German. Moore speaks "gibberish" throughout the film, but correct subtitles are displayed. Moore's German included words like "Boba Fett" and "Osh Kosh B'Gosh" which only made by laugh harder! Also Hitler's Frankenstein monster called Meshugannah is played by the iconic Kane Hodder (FRIDAY THE 13th's Jason Vorhees and HATCHET's Victor Crowley). The film is hysterical and is one of my favorite segments.

ZOM-B-MOVIE: Written and directed by Joe Lynch (WRONG TURN 2), the film is the wrap around to CHILLERAMA. Taking place at the formentioned drive-in, the film features a buffet of killer and horny zombies, hellbent on having sex with anything and everybody! Starring Corey Jones (Tobe), Kali Thorne (Mayna), Brendan McCreary (Ryan Miller), Ward Roberts (Miller), and Laura Ortiz (Des), the film contains enough sex, boobs, gore, and naughty bits that it's a wonder it didn't receive an X rating! Also, there are numerous movie quotes to fill a space cruiser, from STAR WARS and DIE HARD to THE GOONIES and SPACEBALLS, you can make it into a drinking game! Of course the best line comes from Tobe (ala Romero's DAWN OF THE DEAD), "When there's no more room in Hell, the dead shall fuck the Earth!" Oh yeah, did I mention the zombie orgy at the drive-in? OK, there's a zombie orgy at the drive-in. Yeah, you gotta see it to believe it folks!

The film was released in various major cities across the country from September 15, 2011 to October 29, 2011. While the film's been receiving mixed reviews all across the board, make no mistake, it is still entertaining as all Hell. Trust me when I say that you will not be bored with this film. And while it's not everybody's cup of tea, I wouldn't be surprised if it lives on as a midnight movie. It's funny, scary, gory, and sure to entice people to dance in the aisle. Also the film has some great acting in it and everybody obviously had a lot of fun making this, and it shows! You're not supposed to take the film seriously, you're supposed to have fun watching it, and the entire cast and crew accomplishes this in spades!

CHILLERAMA is rip-roaring, gore-soaked, sexually exposed, queer loving, horror film to ever come out! What other film out there can you see leather clad queer werebears wrestling, Hitler singing a sorrow filled song,  a dancing Jewish Frankenstein, zombies sexing it up, and a giant sperm molesting the Statue of Liberty? I'll tell you where! Right here people, so check out this mother of all tribute to horror anthologies! 4 1/2 out of 5 stars!!


CHILLERAMA is currently available on Blu-Ray and on DVD from Image Entertainment. To purchase a copy, visit the Amazon website at www.amazon.com.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!