Archive for September, 2012

The Earth Dies Screaming

Posted in Aliens, Classic Horror, Science Fiction, UFOs with tags , , , on September 28, 2012 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

The Earth Dies Screaming

After a test pilot lands his plane, he discovers everyone on the ground is dead. He doesn’t goon out, but rather heads for a motel in a small England village and pours himself a drink. Clearly he has survival skills.

Then other somehow alive douche bags start showing up. It’s theorized that aliens gassed the Earth, killing everyone. So how is it these people still exist?

The Earth Dies ScreamingLame excuses abound: the pilot was up in the atmosphere where the gas couldn’t get him. Another couple, bored at a party, go hang out in a hermetically-sealed laboratory. Another woman was in an oxygen tent at the hospital. They all stand around until one frantic broad notices two “people” walking through the quaint town: silver-suited robot aliens looking like something you’d pull out of the back of your 1959 television set.

The Earth Dies ScreamingWhen the woman rushes outside to greet them, they touch her head, said head glows, and she falls down deader than the plot. Her body covered in ceremonial hotel sheets, she later rises from the dead, her eyes all white and zombified. The aliens are making dead bodies get up and then get down. New plan – get the hell outta town.

The Earth Dies ScreamingBut first, the pilot has to triangulate (I love that word) where the alien signal is being broadcast. Discovering a radio tower not far away, he goes to blow it up with a box marked “High Hxplosives.” I don’t know what was in it, but clearly the box itself was a weapon of mass destruction. Without signals by which to slowly clunk around, the robot aliens fall over in complete boredom.

Made in 1964, the Earth does not die screaming, it just yawns itself to death.

Dracula Vs. Frankenstein

Posted in Classic Horror, Evil, Science Fiction, Vampires with tags , , , on September 27, 2012 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

Dracula vs. Frankenstein

Not since Peanut Butter vs. Jelly has there been an anticipated mash-up as Dracula vs. Frankenstein (1971). Sort of.

This Dracula is Jewish with Brady Bunch hair, a moustache and goatee, gold disco chains, black cape and a voice that sounds like it’s echoing through an empty can of Folgers™. And not one that housed dark coffee crystals, either. While being driven around in a car he says stuff like, “I am known as the Count of Darkness, the Lord of the Manor of Corpathia – turn left.”

Dracula vs. FrankensteinFrankenstein’s face looks like half mashed potatoes left in the fridge for not less than two weeks.

Dracula vs. FrankensteinDracula’s street name is Zandor Vorkov. He promises a handicapped carnival descendant of Dr. Frankenstein immortality in return for the resurrected monster. The mad scientist, whose helper is a mute Lon Chaney making “I just made boom boom in my pants” facial expressions, has been experimenting on young girls whose heads are chopped off with an axe and then reattached. Just like plugging in a toaster.

Dracula vs. FrankensteinThe promised fight takes place in the woods where Dracula easily rips off both Frankenstein’s arms, then his head. (In all fairness, they weren’t attached that well to begin with.) You’d think Dracula would have the upper hand since he now has both of Frankenstein’s. But the parted out monster proves in the end that severed heads aren’t as dumb as they look.

You will be, though, if you can sit through this without ripping your own arms off out of boredom.

The Fly – Unsafe Insect

Posted in Classic Horror, Giant Monsters, Nature Gone Wild, Science Fiction, Scream Queens with tags , , , , on September 26, 2012 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

The FlyIn the masterful sci-fi horror The Fly (1958), Andre Delambre is a scientist who invents a teleportation device so he can transport ashtrays to and from different rooms in case some wants to light up. Experimenting day and night until he gets it right (the first one with the family cat didn’t turn out so good), he finally succeeds in teleporting flesh and blood in the right order.

The FlyWith no other cats around, Andre gets into the device zaps himself across the room. Neato. What is less than neato is that a fly got into the chamber with him and was re-integrated with Andre and his lab coat. Now his fly is open – permanently.

The FlyKeeping his disfigured head covered with a handy black cloth so his wife won’t see it and freak the hell out, he types out messages with his non-fly claw hand, instructing her to catch a housefly with a white head (his former one). It’s theorized that if both go back through the device, maybe their DNA puzzle pieces will get put back in order.  But this is real life, not some feel-good movie. It ain’t gonna happen.

The FlyHis sanity giving way to that of being a six-foot housefly, his final coherent instructions to his wife is to push the button on the metal press while he lays under it, thereby erasing all evidence of this science oopsie so that it may never be repeated – and in the process wrecking perfectly good lab coat. (Love means never having to say you’re sorry for putting your husband’s head in a hydraulic metal press.)

The Fly

The Fly boasts two of sci-fi horror’s all time best scream moments, one when the wife (and viewer) sees her husband’s fly face for the first time, and the final scene in the garden with the other buggy version of Andre caught in a spider web. Even by today’s standard that one gives your shorts a good yank. And I submit to you, who couldn’t use a good shorts yank every now and again?

A Space Monster From Space

Posted in Asian Horror, Asian Sci-Fi, Classic Horror, Foreign Horror, Giant Monsters, Godzilla, Nature Gone Wild, Science Fiction with tags , , , , , , , on September 25, 2012 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

Dogora – The Space MonsterDogora – The Space Monster (aka, Dagora – blah, blah, blah) is one of those early ’60s Japanese sci-fi movies that both defies description and yet is hard to describe. There seems to be a problem with that sentence I can’t quite put my finger on.

Some might say Dogora, an extraterrestrial Godzilla-sized monster, is nothing more than a super-sized jellyfish. And to that I say SCREW YOU. Dogora can float in the sky and leak out heavy crystals that bash people in the head. Can a jellyfish do that? I think not.

Dogora – The Space MonsterDiamond mines the world over are being pilfered, probably for their valuable rocks. A Japanese detective theorizes it to be the work of a gang of highly-organized criminals. A shifty detective from the States is brought in to assist, although he really seems to only want to assist his own wallet. And real diamond thieves, upset to the point of stomach aches, are at a loss to explain their loss because the diamonds they stole are being re-stolen.

Dogora – The Space MonsterNo one thinks to blame Dogora, because hey, what the hell do outer space squid need with diamonds? I’ll tell you what – Dogora requires the carbon, which diamonds are made of. He eats the damn stuff. People and buildings, too.

The gangster stuff is goofy, with lots of plot-stalling double and triple-crossing going on. But scientists and police have their hands full trying to make Dogora knock it off. They finally figure out how to do this and the effects, while not terribly convincing, are fun to watch if you’ve been drinking.

Dogora – The Space MonsterI’d love to throw back a few cold ones with Dogora, if anything just because his arms are long enough to reach all the way to the fridge to grab some more space beers without having to get off the lunar couch.

The Day The Earth Stood Still – Then Moved Around

Posted in Giant Monsters, Science Fiction, UFOs with tags , , on September 24, 2012 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

The Day the Earth Stood StillOne of the greatest science fiction films of all time and space, 1951’s The Day the Earth Stood Still is a cautionary tale about letting our Earth tempers get out of hand. Like we’re ever gonna do the right thing.

Vacationing space face Klaatu arrives in Washington, DC in a UFO that lands on a ball field with no parking meters anywhere in sight. Score! He comes out of the spaceship to give the President of the United States a gift, which looks like a gun. In return, we shoot him. Fortunately, he has future medicine with which to quickly heal himself. But that was his whole freakin’ point – our aggression is just too aggressive for other planets.

The Day the Earth Stood StillKlaatu has an 8-foot tall robot named Gort. This thing still resonates as one of the eeriest and coolest alien robots ever to land on our angry blue planet. An override verbal command –“Klaatu barada nikto” – has been invoked countless times since, including a way of ordering another round of space beers. Without that command, Gort – trained to fight fire with fire – would be unstoppable, and he’d fry our worthless flesh with that cool electric eye of his.

The Day the Earth Stood StillKlaatu needs to speak to the whole world, not just the US, to impart his message of peace or else (“or else” being your planet being turned into an overcooked meatloaf). But none of the Earth leaders care to meet with him on US soil. So the military wants to keep Klaaty locked up until they can decide what to do with him. Yeah, that’ll happen.

Klaat Klaat gets out, meets with a leading scientist to get the guys who write math books to spread his message. In response, the military hunts him down and shoots him dead. Again with the trigger fingers. Gort manages to bring Klaatu back to life (Got Jesus?) for one show-stopper of an Earth scolding.

The Day the Earth Stood StillKlaatu’s UFO is spectacular, as is Gort, who doesn’t have any speaking lines but nevertheless turns in a commanding performance. The reason I mentioned “your planet” a few sentences ago is because I’m hitching a ride with K&G on the next saucer outta here. You people of Earth can shove it. P.S. Don’t touch my stuff while I’m gone.

The Never-Ending Curse of Frankenstein

Posted in Classic Horror, Evil, Foreign Horror, Misc. Horror, Science Fiction with tags , , , , on September 23, 2012 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

The Curse of FrankensteinOut of the four hundred or so movies about Frankenstein and his monstrous boy toy, one thing remains consistent: the plot never changes. You have an obsessive scientist with a God complex who uses non-sterile hands to sew dead body parts together to make his own worshipper, kick starts the engine with easily channeled lightning, and later is shocked when people want to fork his creation in the butt. But since no one seems to get tired of this morality play, they’ll keep making the same movie over and over.

One of the more gruesome takes is The Curse of Frankenstein (1957), a British version of Frankenstein, with a monster Lego’d™ together with easily attached parts from handy corpses, eyeballs, internal organs and a squishy brain that, while was previously a noted professor’s thinker, got a little scuffed up in a misunderstanding about Baron Von Frankenstein’s intention with said noodle.

The Curse of FrankensteinHis teacher/mentor since the outside-the-box-thinking trader of brains, Dr. Paul Krempe has moral issues with his student’s objectives. He was ready to relax in the glowing praise of his peers (and score science groupies) when he and Frankenstein brought a dead dog back from the golden pound in the sky. But the Baron has loftier goals, and needs the necessary parts to complete his blasphemous recipe.

The damaged brain is successfully transplanted and the resulting abomination, looking like he’s been partying non-stop in meat-packing plant, turns into that obnoxious guest that won’t leave.

The Curse of FrankensteinThe monster is locked up but gets loose, because that’s what monsters do. Dr. Krempe is not only good with test tubes, but with a rifle as well, returning the creature to its origins in a shallow grave. Frankenstein, well-versed in the art of bringing the dead back to life, takes one more lap around the lab, this time with even more mixed results.

The Curse of FrankensteinThe monster kills Frankenstein’s housekeeper, the very same one the mad scientist earlier knocked up and refused to marry. One door closes, another one opens. In the end the creature takes an acid bath, which does a killer job of wiping out evidence. Without corroboration to the contrary, the jury has no choice but to send Frank to the chop shop. Who the heck saw that coming?

The Curse of Frankenstein was Hammer Studios’ first film done in color. Good for them.

The Creature From The Black Lagoon

Posted in Classic Horror, Giant Monsters, Misc. Horror, Nature Gone Wild, Science Fiction, Scream Queens, TV Vixens with tags , , , , , , on September 22, 2012 by Drinkin' & Drive-in

The Creature From The Black LagoonThe above object d’ art is one of the more ingenious renderings I’ve seen on The Creature From The Black Lagoon (1954). It’s an island map, but it looks like the Creature himself. Why didn’t I think of that? I could be a millionaire right now if I did. Stupid brain cells, always letting me down.

You can own this magnificent poster illustrated by the easily-pronounced Laurent Durieux by going to Mondotees.com. Then again, since it went on sale Friday, September 21, 2012, it may in fact already be sold out. I would’ve said something sooner, but I was busy combing my hair.

If you haven’t seen The Creature From The Black Lagoon, pull up a sitting device and let me regale you with my knowledge of said classic cinematic monster.

The Creature From The Black LagoonAfter discovering the forearm/claw fossil skeleton of a previously uncategorized species, a boat-chartered expedition up the Amazon to find the rest of the creature is made post haste. Why the hurry? It’s a freakin’ fossil, not a pack of bologna.

When the rag-tag team of scientists and a supermodel get to the geology site, they find that the minimum-wage help sent there first has been torn to shreds. Dang it – finding good slave labor that deep in the jungle is about as easy to find as soap.

The Creature From The Black LagoonTheorizing that the dirt where the fossil was found might’ve been pushed into a cul-de-lagoon, it’s there they’ll likely hit pay dirt. And they do. This is why they’re scientists, man. Scuba-dooing into the crystal-clear watering hole, two science divers encounter a powerfully strong (and probably strong smelling) missing link fish man who doesn’t like unannounced pool guests. If he did, he wouldn’t have moved out of the city.

The Creature From The Black LagoonBefore Fish Lippy makes his presence known, though, he shadows the supermodel, who just jumped in for a sexy swim. In one of sci-fi’s most erotic moments, the creature swims upside down just mere feet below her, simulating the act of reproduction. Time to cancel his Match.com account as he just found his new gillfriend. Heh.

The Creature From The Black Lagoon

Escaping several confrontations with the brilliantly designed monster, it’s well past time to get the float outta there. But the creature, cleverly blocking their passage with fallen tree parts, stalls them long enough to grab the girl and make for his underwater lair so that he may snorkel her blow hole.

Fortunately, the last scientist swimming, whose engaged to the supermodel, has a harpoon – and not the one in his trunks. Unfortunate, then for Fishy. Quite the thriller for 1954, and the never-been topped creature, who still has you making seaweed extract with your dinghy.