Archive for December, 2011

Classic Horror & Sci-Fi Unplugged

Posted in Aliens, Classic Horror, Evil, Ghosts, Giant Monsters, Werewolves with tags , , , , , on December 31, 2011 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

MetropolisRecently while Googling myself (wouldn’t have been as fun had I been on the Internet), I stumbled upon some fascinating behind-the-scene photos from some of horror and sci-fi’s classic movies. (Credit: got ’em from aintitcool.com)

These are rare, hardly ever seen photos by the unwashed masses, so I felt it appropriate to re-post here for all to see, whether you regularly deprive yourself the glory of the washcloth or not.

The above photo is from the German expressionist film Metropolis (1927), one of the first and most iconic sci-fi movies ever made. Turns out the chick robot is in fact a real chick. Interesting to note the use of a hand-held hair dryer. That’s how technologically advanced Germans were back in the late ’20s; we owe them for all things contemporary hair-grooming.

The ShiningHere’s a cool rare photo of Jack Nicholson in-between shooting scenes during The Shining (1980). The shot was taken moments before Jack hacked them up with an axe. It was a helluva stroke of luck that Jack the actor had the same first name as Jack Torrance, his movie character. What are the odds of that ever happening again?

The Birds, King KongThese next two shots are incredible – Alfred Hitchcock and Tippi Hedren on the set of The Birds (1963), surrounded by angry birds, and a miniature model of King Kong (1933) climbing up a fake mountain, using the principles of forced perspective to his advantage. The shots you didn’t get to see: Alfred and Tippi covered in seagull poop and King Kong slipping on a banana peel of all things, and plummeting to his splattery airplane model death.

The Gate, 2001: A Space OdysseyThen we have a full-scale set from The Gate (1987), which has human-sized demons (wearing people costumes underneath their own skin) terrorizing an over-sized bed and dresser. No word on who had to make the bed after they were done shooting.

Then we have a backstage look inside the gravity-defying space ship in 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). A space odyssey or no, the problem with a round room is that you can’t find a corner to piss in. I’ll leave it to future science to find a work-around.

Superman, GhostbustersHere’s Christopher Reeve as Clark Kent-plus, zooming around the set of Superman (1978). This photo is extremely rare as it depicts the Fortress of SolitudeSuperman’s condo – as a warehouse. It looked kinda different in the movie, though.

Talking a page from Godzilla’s play book, the giant Stay Puft™ Marshmallow Man in Ghostbusters (1984), is literally a fat sack of sugary goo that crushes fleeing citizens on the scale modeled set. Fact: death by giant marshmallows causes cavities – in your face.

The Howling, The Empire Strikes BackOn the set of The Howling (1981) director Joe Dante tries to keep the werewolf from biting his neck off by telling the lycanthrope a joke (“How do you keep a werewolf from attacking? Throw Nair™ in his face.” Man, that still cracks me up to this day. And by the looks of the photo, the werewolf as well.)

And finally, the special effect behind the signature opening prologue to The Empire Strikes Back (1980). Back then they used a 400-pound camera to pull off the scrolling narrative. Today, they can do it on an iPad™. You don’t need one of those expensive devices to emulate the effect – most 400-pound waffle irons have that as a standard feature. Toasters, too.

House of Flesh Mannequins

Posted in Classic Horror, Foreign Horror with tags , on December 29, 2011 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

House of Flesh MannequinsHouse of Flesh Mannequins (great title and top-selling brand of hot dogs) is an “homage” to grindhouse/arthouse films of the ’70s, in particular, snuff films. I was never a fan of those types of feel good flicks; my stomach can only go as deep as the first two Hellraiser movies and the ultimate snuff film of all time Lassie’s Great Adventure/1963. (I actually had to run to the restroom and hurl my stinkin’ guts clean out after little Timmy fell down the well again, this time his leg catching on rebar and tearing off at the femur. With Lassie’s incessant barking, they got Timmy out, but his leg still hangs there, rotting and crawling with well maggots.)

House of Flesh MannequinsThe stylish Italian-made/sub-titled House of Flesh Mannequins (arriving February 21, 2012) is set up in three sections (or “acts”) and is loaded with surreal S&M-flavored gore, sex, religion and mutilations. Only thing missing is a bottle of Jager. And if they needed any more frosting, the cast is made up of “international porn stars and regular actors working together for the first time with extreme body art performers used in the torture scenes.”

House of Flesh MannequinsThey’ll need all of that if they’re going to top the scene in Lassie’s Great Adventure where Timmy resorts to cannibalism to survive the horrific two hours in that hellish well. It’ll churn your tum tum.

The Military vs. Monsters

Posted in Evil, Foreign Horror, Ghosts, Science Fiction, UFOs with tags , , , , on December 28, 2011 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

The SquadThe Squad is a new Spanish-made military horror movie, the irony being that those in active duty military have seen and endured more horrors than any movie ever made, with the possible exception of Pee Wee’s Big Adventure (1985) – that thing still freaks me out to this day.

But Large Marge aside (tell me you got the reference), The Squad revolves around losing contact with a military base in the “desolate wastelands of Colombia.” Everyone thinks the place fell prey to terrorists. Imagine the look on the faces of the nine-man squad sent to figure out WTF, only to find chili con carnage everywhere – and a mute woman in chains. And no, her name is not Alice. (Get it? Geez, do I have to explain everything?)

From The Squad’s press release: “Gradually the isolation, the inability to communicate with the outside world, and the impossibility of escape begin to undermine the sanity of the soldiers. They start to question the identity of their enemy and the true nature of the strange, silent woman. Is she a terrorist? A victim? Or something more sinister? Something supernatural? Paranoia takes root. Prisoners of fear and the terrible secret they share, their humanity abandoned, the men turn savagely on each other.”

I’m guessing the terrible secret they share is probably that all the men dated the woman in the past with less than erotic results. Ahem.

The ObjectiveThis recalls The Objective (2008), another military horror movie that has special ops guys heading into the Afghanistan desert to shoot terrorists right where they live. There’s a whole lotta nothing out there: a few rocks, some dirt, a bunch of bugs, a UFO. And what they encounter is more than their training – and stain-resistant fatigues – can handle. (Likely it’s Bigfoot.)

Red SandsThe Squad also is reminiscent of Red Sands (2009), in which soldiers stationed in Afghanistan have been given direct orders: seize a strategic dirt road. Hard to do that after they shot up an ancient dirt statue and released a djinn, a demonic spirit born of smokeless fire that hates dirt humans. As a result, war atrocities committed by some of the troops pop up with dinner plate sized holes in heads and chests. That causes some unsettling moments and/or madness.

So the lesson here today is to support the military and their mission to stamp out terrorism, UFOs, ghosts, DjinnsBigfoot (OK, not really – BF’s cool), and any other paranormal or otherwise thing that threatens the American way of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Camel Spiders

Posted in Nature Gone Wild, Science Fiction with tags , on December 27, 2011 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

Camel SpidersAccording to Wikipedia™, spiders are found worldwide on every continent except for Antarctica, and have become established in nearly every habitat with the exception of air and sea colonization. Clearly, Wikipedia™ doesn’t know what its talking about – there are millions of spiders that live in the ocean, though in the sea they’re referred to as “crabs.” Wiki™ goes on to says that there are approximately 40,000 spider species and 109 families. One question: who the hell counted?

Camel spiders fall into that vast category. And because they grow to the size of living room couches and attack humans, someone finally got around to making a horror movie about our desert crawling, face-eating friend, titled simply enough, Camel Spiders, due out in March of 2012.

Given the science name of Solifugae, these camel spiders have been tormenting our armed forces stationed in the Middle East for years. And that’s where the story takes place (instead of underwater, which might have been more expensive and because sand is pretty cheap by comparison). A bunch of people in a desert area (“Los Sandgeles” – heh) are besieged by these mutant spiders who pursue them with vigor. And because the Volkswagon Bug™ sized bugs are big, they’re extra hungry. Wanna know what your face looks like to a mutant spider? A SANDwich. (Man, I am ON today.)

Cool movie idea, but I can’t wait until someone gives me crabs and…wait…that didn’t come out right.

Tokyo Species – Adult Film Aliens

Posted in Aliens, Asian Horror, Asian Sci-Fi, Foreign Horror, Science Fiction with tags , , , , on December 26, 2011 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

Tokyo SpeciesIf you think about it, Species, the smash hit sci-fi horror movie about a supermodel alien who has to mate (i.e., do it) with an Earth dude, should’ve been X-rated. By cutting out the close-ups of the alien’s Uranus and just keeping the boobs and butts, they got an R-rating, which went a long way to scoring over $113 million smackaloons at the box office. If Species was X-rated, though, it could’ve made one hundred trillion dollars.

Species

Natasha Henstridge played the alien in human form, and had no problem taking her clothes off for the betterment of science. Now, 17 years later, the movie is getting the proper treatment in the X-rated loose remake, Tokyo Species, starring 25 year-old adult film thespian, Maria Ozawa. There are not enough poems in the world to express my happiness right now.

Maria and NatashaMaria, daughter of a Japanese woman and a Canadian dude (hold the jokes, you insensitive jokesters), is best known for her dramatic role in 2009’s Monster Swallowing Ecstasy and the just-released Erotibot (2011), another X-rated sci-fi film, this one involving pleasure robots designed to improve the quality of life for the starring actresses.

ErotibotIn Tokyo Species, whose trailer is not suitable for viewing at work, church, or the family breakfast table, Maria stars as a Japanese schoolgirl who appears to commit suicide by jumping off a building or a really tall building shaped ladder. As she’s lying on the ground in total disrepair, an alien finds its way into her body (they didn’t show that part, but one can only theorize as to the entry portal), and becomes the host for a creature that needs to mate – often. And in the middle of said act of shame, sprouts a spear-like alien tentacle that pokes new portals in your face, back, front, and south of the belt buckle equator.

You’ll need to be 18 years or older to rent/buy/watch/lather/rinse/repeat Tokyo Species. Even though it looks to have a lot of replay value, wait until you’re old enough so as to not break any interplanetary laws.

Merry Planet of the Apes

Posted in Nature Gone Wild, Science Fiction with tags , on December 25, 2011 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

The Planet of the ApesIt’s Christmas. And that means it’s time for my annual holiday tradition – a half-rack of Budweiser™, a giant bowl of popcorn given a glossy coat by two sticks of rich creamery butter, a clean pair of pants (why waste paper towels or napkins?), a box of tissues, and all five of the original Planet of the Apes movies. While everybody is opening presents that they’ll return/re-gift and/or put on eBay™, I’m goin’ ape for the entire day: 486 minutes (or “8.1 hours”) of human-hating entertainment.

In case you haven’t seen the Ape movies in chronological order, what the hell is wrong with you? I’ll cut you some slack if you’re still three years old or younger. Everyone else – NO EXCUSE.

But as this is the season of giving, I present a primer to the super awesome The Planet of the Apes (or El Planeta de Los Simios for you Spanish readers), one of the greatest film franchises ever in the history of the world. It’s the only TRUE way to celebrate Christmas.

The Planet of the ApesPLANET OF THE APES (1968)
Made in 1968, some astronauts zooming around space somehow end up in the future where Earth is ruled by MONKEYS THAT TALK! Humans are hunted by gorillas as trophies and to protect their eco-system (humans have a tendency to stink up the place). Best. Plot. Ever.

The Planet of the ApesBENEATH THE PLANET OF THE APES (1970)
So they send another astronaut into outer space to look for Taylor and the other three space guys that didn’t come back with their expensive spaceship. Luckily, Brent, the rescue-naut, crash-lands near Ape City. Before the apes can add him to their trophy case, underground mutants mind-capture him. I say mind-captured because in the future some humans can talk and yell at you with their thoughts. Wish I could do that. Great action, great apeage, great depiction of New York as a war-scarred wasteland, cool mutant faces, lots of apes, and a nuclear bomb. How – besides a sequel – could you want anything more?

The Planet of the ApesESCAPE FROM THE PLANET OF THE APES (1971)
You mean to tell me that talking apes from the future pulled Taylor’s spaceship from the bottom of the Forbidden Zone lake, figured out how to fix it, put on space suits and piloted the craft into outer space right before the Earth was blown up by the Divine Bomb worshipped by mutants living underground, and went through a time warp, which back-plopped them into the year 1973 where they were considered a threat to the Earth’s future and scheduled to be neutered, but instead were hunted down and murdered? Works for me!

The Planet of the ApesCONQUEST OF THE PLANET OF THE APES (1972)
In 1983, a disease wiped out every cat and dog on the planet. I’m surprised that one got by you. In 1991 the United States evolved into a nationalist/socialist culture, using fascist techniques and repression to keep everyone in line. See what happens when you vote Republican? Apes are domesticated as pets, then taught to clean house, do the laundry, shop for groceries (they always know where to find sale-priced bananas), and be our butlers and maids. Because we’re Americans, we treat ’em like second-class shit. But baby Milo, the surviving ape son of Cornelius and Zira, is now an adult who cleverly chooses the name Caesar, and rises secretly through the ranks to become the leader of a revolt that has the apes turning on their human slave masters. He teaches the monkey butlers how to use machine guns, flame-throwers, and overloaded litter boxes as weapons of liberation.

The Planet of the Apes

BATTLE FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES (1973)
After getting served in Conquest of the Planet of the Apes, the humans, with radioactive sores on their units, rally for some payback. It’s now the 21st Century, 10 years after the apes dehumanized the world. And what humans are left are kept in corrals and made to do minimum-wage stuff for their ape masters. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. Head ape Caesar, tired of all the non-getting-alonging, decides it might be time for peaceful coexisting with their hairless pets. Damn hippie.

El Planeta de Los Simios. Monkeys that talk. That’s pretty freakin’ cool.

The Planet of the Apes

Mutant Grub Worms

Posted in Foreign Horror, Giant Monsters, Nature Gone Wild, Science Fiction with tags , , , on December 24, 2011 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

HuHu AttackGrubs, or “Grub Worms,” are the scourge of lawn freaks and golf courses everywhere. Those little one-inch cream colored beetles with brown head capsules feast on the dinner salad that is the roots of your grass and other eco-friendly plant forms that may or may not be served as an appetizer in fancy pants restaurants. (I’m looking in your direction, dandelions.) And that they have three pair of legs – one on each of the first three segments behind the head – means they can dine ’n dash before you get a chance to squash ’em like sauteed mushrooms in a purified butter sauce.

So yeah, grub worms = not cool. Better, though, to deal with the small ones and not that giant grub worms in the very Japanese sounding but made in New Zealand horror film short, HuHu Attack. As reported by Undead Backbrain (one of the best underground horror sites in the matrix), HuHu Attack is “an audacious 1950s-style comedy-horror musical extravaganza, featuring a spectacular score performed by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.”

I like the New Zealand Orchestra – they dress nice. And they have a woodwind section to die for.

HuHu AttackHuHu Attack takes place in “Cold War-era rural New Zealand, where two social misfits – a mousy spinster and a traveling magician – find love against a backdrop of small-town prejudice and 40ft-high mutant man-eating Huhu grubs.”

Forty-foot high mutant cannibal grubs works as either a plus or minus for NZ’s tourism council. It’s all in how you spin it.

HuHu AttackI’m not a fan of musicals (too much singing, not enough screaming), but HuHu Attack, even with its playground ridicule inviting name, sounds like a good way to keep your couch company. And don’t let the fact that the grubs look a lot like Mothra in its larval stage (think giant turd). Even though there are more than 100 species of those gummi grubs, they all look the same. Kinda like peanuts, but only if peanuts ate your face and grew to be 40-feet tall. Then peanut butter would way more expensive and…

I’ll shut up now.