Sunday, August 9, 2015

Phil's Cult Classics: MY TUTOR (1983) Blu-Ray from Scorpion Releasing-August 9, 2015

MY TUTOR Blu-Ray Cover (2014)
Starring: Matt Lattanzi, Caren Kaye, Kevin McCarthy, Clark Brandon, Maria Melendez, Crispin Glover, Bruce Bauer, Amber Denyse Austin
Written by Joe Roberts
Cinematography by Mac Ahlberg
Produced by Michael D. Castle and Marilyn Jacobs Tenser
Directed by George Bowers
Originally distributed by Crown International Pictures
Released by Scorpion Releasing

There's something about those old exploitation films from the 1980's that I just love. Believe it or not, there's a certain type of innocence to them. They weren't meant to be angry or offensive really. They were, in a lot of instances, just fun to watch. They weren't made to be taken seriously, but at the same time a lot of hard work were put into these films so they would make money at the boxoffice. These films were still being shown at Grindhouses across America and people went to see these low budget movies. But like I said, some of these films had a sense of innocence and were just fun to watch. Case in point, the newly released blu-ray of MY TUTOR from Scorpion Releasing.

The film's official synopsis: High school senior Bobby Chrystal (Matt Lattanzi) fails his French class, which will block him from entering Yale. His rich, authoritarian father (Kevin McCarthy) hires an attractive 29-year-old Terry Green (Caren Kaye) to tutor Bobby over the summer and help him pass a make-up exam. While Bobby's friends lead him away into strange excursions aimed at losing their virginities, Bobby finds all the extracurricular activities he needs with his new tutor.

Now the topic of teachers having sex with their students these days is an intolerable act that will send someone to jail, most likely the teacher. But hey, this was the 80's so if you were banging your super hot teacher that was totally awesome! See things were a lot looser in the 80's. If they made a T-Shirt saying, "I survived the 80's" I would so buy that.

Original Theatrical Poster (1983)
The film stared Matt Lattanzi as our horny teenager Bobby. Lattanzi went on to appear in other films such as GREASE 2, THAT'S LIFE and ROXANNE. Caren Kaye, who portrayed the ultra hot tutor Terry, had a very long acting career, which landed her to appear in films like SOME KIND OF HERO, TEEN WITCH, SATAN'S PRINCESS and PUMPKINHEAD II: BLOOD WINGS. She also appeared in numerous television shows like The Love Boat, The Betty White Show, Simon and Simon, Murder, She Wrote, Mr. Belvedere, and 21 Jump Street. And of course I can't forget about legendary actor Kevin McCarthy, who played Bobby's dad in the film. The man has starred in over 100 films during his lifetime! His most famous role is that of Dr. Miles J. Bennell from the 1956 sci-fi cult hit INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS. McCarthy appeared in other films like DEATH OF A SALESMAN, THE HOWLING, INNERSPACE, UHF, LOVING ANNABELLE (which I saw at Cinequest 18 back in 2008), and LOONEY TUNES: BACK IN ACTION. His last film he appeared in was THE GHASTLY LOVE OF JOHNNY X, which I saw back at Cinequest 13 in 2013. Unfortunately this was to be the last movie ever for Kevin McCarthy, as he died from pneumonia on September 11, 2010 at the young age of 93.

The film's director George Bowers only made a couple of other films like THE HEARSE and BODY AND SOUL but he's mostly known as an editor. His list of editing credits include exploitation classics THE POM POM GIRLS, VAN NUYS BLVD, GALAXINA, and THE BEACH GIRLS (all are from Crown International Pictures) and Hollywood blockbusters such as SHOOT TO KILL, SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY, A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN, THE PREACHER'S WIFE, FROM HELL, and WALKING TALL. Bowers passed away on August 18, 2012 in Los Angeles.

The film was originally released to theaters by Crown International Pictures on April 22, 1983. With this new blu-ray release by Scorpion Releasing, the film looks way better than the old VHS and awful DVD transfers. The disc also features trailers and you can have the option of watching an intro with the lovely and very delicious Katarina Leigh Waters.

MY TUTOR is an excellent time capsule of those wonderful by-gone days of the 1980's when sex-filled teen slapstick comedies were all the rage. The looks, the sounds, the clothes, the music, the film has everything you would want and more! And now you can relive those glorious days in Hi-Def Blu-Ray! Five out of five stars!! Highly recommended!!

MY TUTOR is currently available on Blu-Ray at your local retailer. You can also purchase a copy at the Amazon website at You can also see upcoming releases from Scorpion Releasing by visiting their website at Also make sure to visit Katarina Leigh Waters as well at

Thanks for reading and enjoy the show!

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Phil sees JURASSIC WORLD in 3D at the Regal Natomas Stadium 16-August 8, 2015

It been 14 years since JURASSIC PARK III was released and let's be honest, it wasn't that great of a film and a weak conclusion to what was a highly popular and profitable franchise. So when it was announced last year that Universal Pictures was reviving the series with a new (and fourth) entry, I was very hesitant. Let's face it: Hollywood has seriously run out of original ideas so they're continuing to raid their vaults to either remake or make new sequels of previously popular films. But after taking my family to see JURASSIC WORLD in 3D at the Regal Natomas 16 Theater, I was very surprised on how excellent it was!

The film's official synopsis: 22 years after the original Jurassic Park failed, the new park (also known as Jurassic World) is open for business. After years of studying genetics the scientists on the park genetically engineer a new breed of dinosaur. When everything goes horribly wrong, will our heroes make it off the island?

This film was a lot more fun to watch than I was expecting it to be. It had action. It had scares. It had comedy, It had genetically created dinosaurs that ate a shit load of innocent people! And kids went to see this film! What the hell America? What is wrong with you? Have you no sense of morals these day? Don't you know you are desensitizing your children? If you take them to see this movie you're only making them want to go out and commit violence in the world!

Actually I'm just kidding! Take the kids to see this movie! It was awesome! Now back to my movie review.

First, this was a worthy entry to the series (given that JURASSIC PARK  III sucked really bad that's not saying much). It picks up after the first film, which also takes place on the original island. This was a smart move on both Universal and the filmmakers. If you want to have people come see it and enjoy it, have it tie in to the original because people love the first one.

Second, have interesting characters in the film. Sure there have been some arguments that Chris Pratt's character Owen is very masochistic and he demeans women in the film. Well, what did you expect from a Hollywood film? Political correctness? Look in this film and you'll find a plethora of old school stereotypes: an evil Asian scientist, a female in distress, annoying stupid kids getting into trouble, and a handsome brave alpha male to save the day. Did I leave anybody out?

Third, fill the screen with awesome special effects that will make them crap in their pants. With today's CGI effects, the dinosaurs look even more real than they did 22 years ago. And seeing it in 3D was pretty damn spectacular. But if you don't like 3D and if it gives you a headache, then 2D is just as cool.

Fourth, have an incredible script to go with your incredible CGI. Well....ok the script was kinda weak and the characters are kinda two-dimenional stereotypes like I previously mentioned. But it did have a beginning, a middle, and an end. So they got that right.

So JURASSIC WORLD is typical Hollywood escapism film and that's a good thing. It's a summer blockbuster popcorn action/adventure film and that's fine. Nothing wrong with that. It had it all and made a fun movie going experience so do check it out. Four out of five stars! Very entertaining!

JURASSIC WORLD is currently playing in both 2-D and 3-D in theaters nationwide, including at the Regal Natomas Stadium 16. To view showtimes, visit their website at

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil Horror Watch: Phil reviews IT FOLLOWS (2014) from Anchor Bay Ent.-August 9, 2015

IT FOLLOWS Blu-Ray Cover (2015)
Starring: Maika Monroe, Lili Sepe, Jake Weary, Daniel Zovatto, Olivia Luccardi, Bailey Spry
Written by David Robert Mitchell 
Cinematography by Mike Gioulaki
Directed by David Robert Mitchell
Released by Anchor Bay Entertainment

Over the past several years Hollywood horror films have been, how do I say it, horrible. There, I said it. And it's true. Over the past decade we have seen almost every classic horror film either remade, rebooted or re-imagined to the point that I've dreaded to see what Hollywood will screw up next. But there are a few decent original horror films that are being released to theaters, but there are few and far between and sometimes they are not we're expecting to see, which can be a lot of fun. Take for instance IT FOLLOWS, the newest horror movie released by our friends over at Anchor Bay Entertainment.

The film's official synopsis: For nineteen-year-old Jay (Maika Monroe), Autumn should be about school, boys and week-ends out at the lake. But after a seemingly innocent sexual encounter, she finds herself plagued by strange visions and the inescapable sense that someone, something, is following her. Faced with this burden, Jay and her friends must find a way to escape the horrors, that seem to be only a few steps behind.

OK, so this film has been receiving a plethora of praise. Critics and horror fans have been saying it's the best horror film so far this year and that it's an instant classic and such. While it is a very good horror film, I wouldn't say it's the best or an instant classic.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2015)
The acting in the film is above average. Lead actress Maika Monroe does a fine job with her portrayal of Jay, and the rest of the cast do their part as well, but overall the acting is nothing to really rave about. But they all deserve some merit for their contribution to the movie.

Director David Robert Mitchell does a fine job of helming the film but overall, it's a horror film that isn't very scary nor horrifying. At times it drags and can't seem to get back on track. Mitchell made some noise with his first indie film THE MYTH OF THE AMERICAN SLEEPOVER (2010), and with this, his big breakout film, fans and critics have been falling over him. But as I stated, this was an mediocre film at best. It wasn't really scary, or bone-chilling, or amazing, or whatever else the critics have been saying. It was a decent film and that's about it.

In conclusion IT FOLLOWS is a fine entry into the horror genre and it did have potential to become of the best horror films of 2015, but it failed to become one. But I will give Mitchell and his brave crew credit for creating an original film which is a rarity these days. Three out of five stars! Entertaining enough for a rental!

IT FOLLOWS is available on both Blu-Ray and DVD and can be purchased at your local retailer or at the Amazon website at

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Phil's Horror Watch: Phil reviews MAGGIE (2015) from Lionsgate-August 8, 2015

MAGGIE Blu-Ray Cover (2015)
Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Abigail Breslin, Joely Richardson, Douglas M. Griffin, Rachel Whitman Groves, Jodie Moore
Written by John Scott 3
Cinematography by Lukas Ettlin
Directed by Henry Hobson
Released by Lionsgate

Hello again horror hounds and welcome back to another installment of Phil's Horror Watch! While mainstream media is blasting Arnold Schwazenegger's newest film TERMINATER: GENISYS, one might have missed his smaller, intimate indie horror/drama the played in select theaters. A film that some horror fans may not even knew was released given to its stars. However, one must seek out Lionsgate's newest release MAGGIE to witness a zombie film unlike anything that's been made before.

The film's official synopsis: After a couple of weeks seeking out his teenage daughter Maggie (Abigail Breslin), Wade Vogel (Arnold Schwarzenegger) finds her in the quarantine wing of a hospital. Maggie has been infected by a lethal outbreak that transforms the victim into a zombie. Wade's friend Dr. Vern Kaplan (Jodie Moore) releases Maggie to spend her last days with Wade and her family. Her stepmother Caroline (Joely Richardson) asks Wade to take their little kids to her sister's house to keep them safe. While Maggie is slowly transformed, Wade stays with her protecting Maggie. But Dr. Vern warns him that the moment that he will have to take an ultimate decision is closer.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2015)
This might be a film that Schwarzenegger fans may not like. This is not an action, adventure, shoot-em-up, big effects, big explosions type film. This is something very different from the norm, even for the zombie genre. Here is a film that is thoughtful, sensitive, emotional and makes you reflect on what's important in your life. Like I said, not your typical Schwarzenegger flick but that's a good thing for Schwarzenegger. We get to see him stretch out his acting capabilities and he's quite believable in his role as the world weary, loving husband and father Wade. I think this his best role he's ever played and it's very refreshing to see him in this 180 type role. When you think of dramatic roles, Arnold Schwarzenegger isn't the first name that pops into your mind. But after seeing him in this film, you might want to reconsider that stereotype you have of him.

Abigail Breslin once again turns in a powerful performance, in this her second outing in the zombie genre (the first one was the horror/comedy ZOMBIELAND). Her portrayal of teen infected girl turning zombie, Maggie is a very believable character and you feel for her outcome: you know she's infected right at the start of the film and you continue to root for her and tell her to fight the virus. You want her to overcome it and be a regular, normal teenage girl. But unfortunately that's not possible. A brilliant and compelling performance on the part of the young actress.

Now believe it or not, this is Henry Hobson's directorial debut and he just nails it from the first frame to the last. The film looks and feels like a beautiful nightmare that unfolds gracefully. Brilliantly photographed by cinematographer Lukas Ettlin, Hobson's vision of a father's loving devotion to his only daughter set against a world that is in a chaotic state of decay and death is lovingly captured for us film lovers to watch and discuss. And since this is technically a zombie film, there are some scares and some minor bloodshed to be found, but overall this is a zombie film that is more about life than death. A triumphant directorial debut on the part of Hobson!

Overall MAGGIE is hands down one of the most original zombie films I have ever seen! A new type of filmmaking has been achieved and for horror fans, this is a reason to celebrate. Everything is usually a remake, reboot, or a re-imagining. Here is an original film for a unique director who had a unique voice and was brave enough to make a personal, reflective, and creative work of art. Five out five stars!! Highly recommended!!

MAGGIE is available on both Blu-Ray and DVD and can be purchased at your local retailer or at the Amazon website at

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!