6/21/2017

Eraserhead (1977) *****

I'm not sure I can think of another film that's as simultaneously bizarre, terrifying, hilarious, confusing, disturbing, repulsive and captivating.

40 years on and this film remains a masterpiece that excites me with every viewing. One of my favorite films of all time.

6/15/2017

Serial Mom (1994) ***1/2

Trans Am 'California Hotel' (2017) ***

Too short, too few songs, and underwhelming for a TA album, but it seems like every other LP by them is killer and the ones in between, while still good, not so much. I do like how the album is split, much like Bowie's 'Low'.

6/04/2017

Rumble Fish (1983) ****

I finally got around to seeing this and I loved it. Coppola's poetic and experimental film features sumptuous cinematography, a vibrant score by Police drummer Stewart Copeland and appeals to me as a fan of A STREETCAR NAMED DESIREWEST SIDE STORYJim Jarmusch, and Coppola's own later film TETRO

5/22/2017

Focus On Film: Episode 53 - August 2017 Criterion Titles

Focus On Film Episode 53 is up!


Rygar and Danman try not to obfuscate whilst we go over the line, make flippy floppy, pay with rivers of blood, leave for good and take the corpse!

In this episode:

"Focus On Film Theme" & commercial music: Daniel Sardella


5/19/2017

Alien: Covenant (2017) ***

Yet another flawed but intriguing and entertaining film in this franchise. I don't think this is any better or worse than the 3rd or 4th films so come at me, I guess.

5/17/2017

Shogun Assassin (1980) ***

Finally got around to seeing this. It's fun and the music is really cool but I don't like the dubbing or the voiceover. I much prefer the original films, LONE WOLF AND CUB: SWORD OF VENGEANCE (1972) and LONE WOLF AND CUB: BABY CART AT THE RIVER STYX (1972), of which it's comprised.

5/15/2017

Phenomena - Italian Version (1985) ***1/2

It's really easy to have a love/hate relationship with Argento and Fulci films, primarily because what's good about them is so good and what's bad about them is really bad. But I can think of few other directors for which I am so forgiving of their films' flaws.

My thoughts from my previous blog write-up remain largely the same but I'm awarding PHENOMENA another 1/2 star this go around. It's one of those films (as with others by both directors mentioned above) where my opinions fluctuate, but it's just so gloriously scattershot in a fantastic way that I can't help but appreciate it.

I'm also thrilled that we finally have a better and properly restored version from Arrow Video (huge uptick in picture quality), produced by my friend and fellow podcaster Michael Mackenzie and released in a handsome limited edition with excellent writing contributions from Rachael Nesbit and more!

5/06/2017

The Horror Show (aka House III) - Uncut European Version (1989) *** [(Ain't Nothin' But A) House Party Pt. 3]

House IV (1992) ** [(Ain't Nothin' But A) House Party Pt. 4]

House II: The Second Story (1987) *** [(Ain't Nothin' But A) House Party Pt. 2]

The first film was a solid little horror flick with some comedic touches. I'm not sure why the creative team behind this sequel decided to go the "everything in a blender" route and ditch the horror almost altgoether, but I kind of love them for it. 

This is a film that only the 80s could birth and not have it turn out completely stupid. Somehow the filmmakers were able to mix a western, action/adventure, swashbuckling, dinosaurs, and up the comedy yet retain some sort of cohesiveness. To be sure, this film is ridiculous (and pretty silly), but very entertaining.



House (1985) *** [(Ain't Nothin' But A) House Party Pt. 1]

4/25/2017

Focus On Film: Episode 52 - July 2017 Criterion Titles

Focus On Film Episode 52 is up!

Danman and Rygar discuss the current hip lingo that the kids are into these days, our new working relationship, ))<>(( + more!

In this episode:

"Focus On Film Theme" & commercial music: Daniel Sardella


4/17/2017

Lifeforce (1985) ****

Railsback goes off the rails. May hypnotizes every male character (and viewer) with her clothes-defying performance. Hooper and O'Bannon chock this bonkers film to the brim with everything and the kitchen sink - space vampires, zombies, over the top performances, ridiculous dialogue, gonzo special f/x, breakneck pace, action, and a gigantic and rousing score by Henry Mancini. Even by Golan and Globus standards LIFEFORCE is nuts. The 1980s were truly a wonderful time that can only be imitated, never replicated.

4/16/2017

Miracle Mile (1988) *****

Wow. Wow wow wow. How had I never seen this or even heard of this film before the Blu-ray release? Even among my more cinema literate friends, I'd never heard mention of it. I've never seen another film like this. If you haven't seen it, I recommend going in largely blind, like I did. This writeup is worth reading, once you've seen the film.

Jim Thompson 'Roughneck' (1954) ***1/2

Partially autobiographical, partially fictionalized account of Thompson's life before becoming a successful writer, making for a bit of a departure from his usual pulp/crime style.