Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Rock and Rule

Rock and Rule:
Heavy Metal Canadian Style, eh?

In a recent jaunt around the various websites that keep me well supplied with the rare, forgotten and hard to find, I happened across this gem from the forgotten era when western animation was truly a thing of beauty. You see back in the early 1970s western animation (meaning animation from USA, Canada, UK) sort of went through a transformation, it became a sort of outsider art, aimed at the growing subcultures that evolved from the 1960s beliefs in sex, drugs and rock and roll, outsider animation was hot, and for the next decade and a half or so, would bring us such grinhouse classics as Fritz The Cat, Heavy Metal, Watership Down, The Secret Of NIMH, and this lovely gem, Nelvana's first animated film Rock And Rule, which not only set the pace and took the crown from Heavy Metal as being THE film for outsider animation, much like its fellow Canadian film My Bloody Valentine took the crown of slasher films from Texas Chainsaw Massacre, but it also took the fading concept of the rock opera, and gave it one final mindblowing finale. This thing is a wonderful all around piece of work, from the story, to the casting, casting Debbie Harry as the singing voice of the lead female was just brilliance at the time, to the very well done animation, even frame looks like a picture that moves, but you can hang on your wall and be snooty to your friends because you have art and they don't, its so very striking and just a joy to watch, and with songs by Cheap Trick, Blondie, Earth Wind and Fire among others, its also a joy to hear.

The plot follows the same line as your average rock opera, a post apocalyptic world set after a nuclear war, in this one the human race completely wiped itself out in world war 3 after the United States and Soviet Union made the cold war a hot one, and the new dominate creatures on the planet evolved from Dogs, Cats and Rats, and though they've built a vast technologically advanced society built on the back of all the technology we've left behind, they also took from the now gone human race, the power of rock and roll, because lets face it, if something is gonna survive a nuclear holocaust, its gonna be rock and roll, and much like every other rock opera, rock and roll has become the music of rebellious youth, who live for it. And that is how we meet our cast.

Omar, Angel, Dizzy, and Stretch are all members of a small time rock band that though not financially successful, have a good size following playing clubs and concert halls and the like in their home town of Ohmtown, they stick together like a family because they seem to be all that each other has, they live and play together, as is the case in most films of this nature, rock and roll is their life, and the life of those who could come to see them play. When they were playing a show one night, they catch the ear and eye of the most popular rock musician in the world Mok Swagger (simply called Mok in the film, the comic book adaption revealed his full name), Mok though seen as the greatest rocker of all time even as he starts to feel his age, is secretly a master of the dark arts, which he invokes in his concerts, though no one watching is aware, they just believe its all part of the theatrical aspect of his shows, Mok has been searching the world over for "the one voice", a voice that will be able to summon an ancient demon from the netherworld, which he hopes to use at the highlight of an upcoming concert in Nuke York City's Carnage Hall (thats New York City's Carnegie Hall to us pre-nuclear war folks) which he plans to be the greatest show of all time. When he hears Angel singing with the band, he believes he's found the voice he needs. Mok offers Angel to join his band, saying that he can write her songs and with him and his band backing her, can make her even more famous then himself, Angel refuses because the offer is only for her, and not the rest of her band as well, Mok continues to try and get her to come with him, and when she continues to refuse him, he simply has his men kidnap her, so he can force her to sing the song that will summon the demon for him. Once they find out what Angel has gone, Omar, Dizzy and Stretch steal a cop car from a local police officer they know and set out for Nuke York City to get her back, along the way finding out what Mok's plan is, and realizing they aren't just saving Angel, but the whole world from the demon that Mok is going to unleash on the land, ofcourse, using the power of rock and roll to do so.

From there the film, like most rock operas takes you on a twisted and at times dark ride through the surreal and the unexplainable, as most of these types of films do, ranging from the disturbing to the steampunk to the cyberpunk and then back to what it knows best. And though thats very common in rock opera, to see it done in a way thats just so beautiful to the eyes and ears is just breathtaking. And I was alittle let down that the characters who sing weren't voiced completely buy those who to their singing; Angel's singing voice is Debbie Harry of Blondie, Omar's singing voice is Robin Zander of Cheap Trick, and Mok has two singing voices, first Lou Reed of The Velvet Underground but is then replaced by Iggy Pop when Mok invokes the demon. I'd have really enjoyed them doing the roles through the whole film, not just the musical numbers, but having someone else do the singing for a character in animation is, and always has been, common practice, but either way, thats really the only downside I could find to this wonderful forgotten classic from the tail end of the grindhouse era. The art is beautiful, bright and pretty even when its ment to be dark and ugly, the cast and story itself is great and just like other well known rock operas (Rocky Horror Picture Show, Tommy, Zepher, Cottonpatch Gospel, ect..) the songs don't seem forced or placed in the film simply to place them in the film, which is something I just love, I hate when a film forces something on you simply to make it fit the genre its aiming to be in, thankfully you'll never get that feeling with this. So seriously, if you haven't had a chance to see Rock and Rule, or you vaguely remember it from your younger days, by all means go about finding youself a copy, order some pizza or something, and sit back and enjoy yourself, you won't regret it. Also, a heads up, Amazon has a an anniversary edition coming out on blu ray in September... Alrighty got mine pre-ordered.

And for those that are interested, here is the trailer...



Monday, August 23, 2010

No Ordinary Family

No Ordinary Family:
Love The Show, Hate The Title.

Its strange really, last year was the end of the once powerhouse but turned trainwreck series Heroes, and with it many people thought it would bring about the end of the idea of superheroes and all things related on a major american network (Some could argue the ending this year Smallville counts but The CW is the second to the bottom network 95% of the time in the weekly and nightly ratings, so its "mainstream" status is arguable.), but with Heroes sending after that just disastrous last season, I found it really odd to discover that there were going to be afew new Superhero themed series this upcoming year, with NBC's "The Cape" and ABC's "No Ordinary Family" getting the most buzz, and though I've not seen The Cape yet, I have recently watched the pilot for No Ordinary Family, and I must say, its actually alot better then I was expecting it to be, I mean way better, like to the point I'm actually excited, like Fringe excited. Yes, I think its that good.

On the surface the show looks abit like a live action version of The Incredibles, but instead of about retired superheroes and their children, its the story of The Powells, your average modern day family, thats slowly drifting apart, the children are off in their own worlds, and the parents are drifting slowly apart, and no one is connecting, they are the textbook case of dysfunctionality, and though they are all aware of this, that doesn't stop Jim Powell from dreaming and remembering. Jim is sort of a man out of place, a police sketch artist that used to be an artist, he wishes his family would be what it once was, a loving caring unit that they once were, as he sees his daughter struggling with the troubles of having a boyfriend and popularity, and his son suffer with the fact that no one believes in him and treats him like he's stupid, and he feels heartbreak when he looks at his wife who though she's become a giant success in life, he realizes its cost her the family they formed, and is scared it will cost their marriage in the end. Jim doesn't know what to do with himself, he looks at his life and wishes he could do more, that he was out there catching criminals and keeping the world safe instead of drawing criminals, and he wishes for his glory days of being happy, this desire is what leads him to convince his wife to turn a research trip to the deepest Brazilian rain forest into a family vacation together. Which she agrees could be needed.

While they're in the rain forest, Jim gets sick of the fact his daughter's constantly texting her friends, and his son is just watching television, and that his wife can't make time to be with them all, to counteract this he forces them all to go on an air tour of the rain forest, claiming its something they'll all remember for the rest of their lives. Ironically, Jim isn't aware at this point how true that statement really is. As they're up in the plane, a powerful storm comes out of nowhere and as they try to fly through it, one of the plane's engines catches on fire and though they try to keep it in the air, the pilot has to crash land it in a remote lake in the rain forest, thanks to Jim making sure they're all ready and repaired for it, The Powells survive the crash, but the pilot does not, they all eventually make it to the side of the lake and are rescued, once they return home, things seem to go back to normal, much to Jim's dislike, he expresses this to his wife, who understands, but is saddened he felt there was any chance things could be different. Jim goes to meet his friend D.A George St. Cloud, who tells him that maybe him and his wife should go into counseling, claiming they can fix themselves, then everything else.

The next day Jim is at work taking a description of a murderous bank robber from a widow, when he gets up to get some coffee, he has a conversation with a defective whom he's friendly with, asking her to handle the whole being a cop aspect thing, she tells him it never actually gets easy, and as they're talking, a man jumps up from a desk where a cop is taking his information and pulls the officer's gun, and fires a shot toward Jim and the detective he's talking too, Jim instinctively grabs her tossing her to the ground, saving her life. When he gets up, he realizes that he'd not only caught, but crushed the bullet in his hand. This freaks him out and he takes the rest of the day off to clear his head. As this is happening, Jim's wife Stephenie is at her lab where she explains a believed miracle plant her team in Brazil discovered, later in her office her boss comes to her and tells her that their company's chairman is flying in to discuss full funding for her project that night, Stephenie calls Jim to tell him that she has to cancel a planned night out for the two of them, to which Jim is ok with given that he's out experimenting with his new power, or as he puts it "writing the owners manual for his new ride", as she leaves her office she wishes she could just have more time in the span of a day so get what she needs done, and as she's running to her car, something happens, she starts to run faster, and faster, and faster, and eventually runs so fast that she lets out a sonic boom and runs so fast that time around her starts to slow down, she comes to a stop in the middle of a busy freeway.

As Jim and Stephenie discover their powers, Jim calling his friend George in to help him with testing, they discover he is superstrong, can jump several miles at a time, has super enhanced reflexes and durability which allows him to avoid and stop anything that has so far been thrown at him, and Stephenie with the help of her assistant discovers that she's able to run at "over a mile every 0.6 seconds" and that she creates a kinetic barrier around herself and anyone she takes along with her when she's running but that everything else on her is sped up as well, her reflexes, her mind, her metabolism meaning she'll have to eat tons but she'll never gain a pound. Jim decides to take his new powers out for a test drive superhero style, and when trying to stop the same robber he sketched earlier, that he is infact, not bulletproof, the implication being that the closer the gun is to him when fired, the more damage it does, it doesn't really give him more then just a fleshwound, bit still its enough to make Jim realize he's got limitations, he calls his friend George to come get him telling him where he is, George takes him back to his house where he tells Stephenie everything about Jim's new powers, and she tells him about hers, she then shows Jim and the two of them feel relieved and curious, believing that if they had something happen, that means their kids might have as well, as they wonder this Stephenie remarks that the lake they crashed into looked different, she said it was glowing a bright green bioluminescence, as they wonder this, their daughter calls in a panic. Stephenie goes to get her, claiming Jim had a headache.

While sitting in the car outside of her high school, Daphne Powell, Jim and Stephenie's daughter tells her the story of how while she was confronting a girl that was after her boyfriend, she first heard her thoughts, she first brushed this off, but then in the middle of a backetball game she could hear the thoughts of everyone in the gym, the players, the couches, the refs, the spectators, everyone, she freaked out and called her parents for help, as she explains this to her mother, Stephenie smiles, tells her she believes her, and then tells her when they get home they're gonna have a family talk and explain whats going on. As they're sitting around discussing it Jim and Stephenie's son JJ points out that he hasn't had any powers surface yet, and that he's upset at that, this degrades the discussion into an argument and they all go off to do their own thing. The next day at work Jim gets an ID on the robber and gives it to his friend he saved earlier and telling her where to find an exgirlfriend that posted bail for the man 6 months earlier, offering to go with her and her partner, Jim's laughed at and told "leave the crimefighting to cops with guns.", Jim follows them anyway, and arrives just alittle to late to save his friend and her partner from getting shot in an ambush by the suspect, Jim and him have another showdown, this time the guy reveals that he can teleport, as he's teleporting around Jim as they fight, he says to him "what, did did you think you were the only one?" as he says this he's shot in the back by Jim's friend, who then tells him to leave. Afterwhich, Jim's friend George St. Cloud reveals to him that he's set up a lair for the two of them to operate out of in his garage, stating he'll be Jim's support guy. As this is happening, JJ discovers that his power is basically being a human computer, with lightening fast learning capabilities and instant mastering of anything he learns. This unites them all again, and the pilot ends with the family all in the backyard playing football together like in Jim's many flashbacks, but this time with their powers, and all enjoying themselves.

So do I think this show is gonna last? I give it at this point two seasons, normally superhero television shows start to break down thanks to the "lets do it on the cheap even though its bringing us billions" concept that has killed so many shows before hand, but the pilot leaves you wanting more, so very very much more, the very savvy comic book nerd would recognize this as basically the Fantastic Four's origin, but not in space, and fans of international television and my blog would also note this is basically an american version of The Misfits, the recent UK series with a similar concept, but with a thunderstorm that went over south London, and each person with a power getting a power they most desire, though they don't explain why or how in the pilot others can have powers, but I am sure as hell curious as to how they'll explain that. Plus the cast of this is just amazing, my hometown homeboy Michael Chiklis plays an excellent Jim Powell dispite that fact he seems to always play cops or superheroes, or in this case both, he really does so well that you just can't help but cheer him on. Julie Benz does great as Stephenie Powell in a great departure from her role on Dexter as Rita Morgan that most would recognize her as. Kay Panabaker, who's just a pheonominal young actress who's done tons of guest work (some might recognize her as the original Emily Lightman on the pilot to the series Lie To Me) does a great job as Daphene Powell, its one of those cases of the casted actor really being the age they're ment to be, which makes it more believable, and Jimmy Bennett, who most will recognize as the young James Kirk in 2009's Star Trek, but is also the current voice of Roo in the Winnie The Pooh series and also voices Rerun Van Pelt in the modern Peanuts cartoons, plays a great JJ, he looks like a kid that could see the world's given up on and just wants to slack off because of it, and brings the right amount of sarcasm to the role and the show. the secondary cast is also just as good, its really a refreshing take and look into a genre that seems to almost never be handled correctly by the average major network, truly a delight. Honestly, if you have a chance, come the fall, give it a look you won't be let down. My only real complaint would be that the title sucks, and I kind of wish they didn't use both the Superhero! and Publisher's Clearing House fonts in promotional material, but I'm nitpicky like that. Oh and also, I hate that they were able to find an original outfit Kitty Pryde with Lockheed figure and I can't seem to find one.



Tuesday, August 17, 2010

This One's For My Mom...

My whole life I've had to listen to my mother rant about how the Lion King ripped off this show, I'm not exaggerating either, she would rant so much so that it makes my ranting about how much Uwe Boll sucks at making films look like a friendly light hearted discussion, its fucking crazy really.... But as she loves to point out, a 32 year old man who collects toys and comic books really has no room to judge anyone for their obsessions.... plus, well come on, the theme is catchy!

Its very clear that Disney completely ripped off this cute lil'fellow, specially if you look into the casts and the like its almost a character for character and scene for scene take, but please, don't let that detract you from enjoying Kimba, or the disney rip off, The Lion King, they are both so very wonderful... I really only mention it so you can be aware of the blatantness of what Disney does, but not take away from how great some of it is..



Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The 10 Best Films You Have Never Seen

I've kind of been in a list mood lately, if you readers can't tell by my recent postings, dunno if its a lack of good summer movies to date, or lack of many good summer television shows, I'm not really all that sure, or maybe its just easier then to do then dig through all my archives of stuff looking for something awesome to review, or maybe I just have been running about offline rather hectic like, dunno, either way, I love to do lists, and this one came about by means of a conversation I was having with a newer reader to the blog who had asked me for some movie watching advice and asked that they be "something that doesn't really fit the mold of what most current films fall into.", and well because I love a challenge, I jumped at it. So with out anymore rambling, here we go....

The 10 Best Films You Have Never Seen

10. Waterloo Bridge (1931):
This is one of those films I never stop raving about, its got everything you could want if you're a film lover, its the definition of precode high budget sets and design and unafraid directing and scriptwriting combined into a beautifully elegant machine of art in moving picture form, its just brilliantly shot, I find myself in awe everytime I see it. Plus, you can't really go wrong with the combination of underrated early Hollywood director (and personal favorite) James Whale, before he became immortalized for directing Frankenstein, which also teamed him with his leading lady from this film, the forgotten beauty Mae Clarke, who also grew to fame in the 1931 film Public Enemy. Plus, you can't go wrong with a film that was remade twice once in 1940 as "Gaby" and again in 1941 as the more well known version of Waterloo Bridge. Seriously, if you haven't ever seen this version, or a James Whale or Mae Clarke movie, you are really in for a treat.

9. The Commitments (1991):
Not unknown to lovers of Irish films, as well as lovers of good music, but generally forgotten and left to collect dust in the back of most dvd stores storage rooms, this part musical, part social statement drama about life in Dublin at the time, and part launching pad for literally every Irish actor and musician who went on to any sort of career from this film, really needs to be dusted off and brought back to the light of day. Its a fun and touching story of a group of down on their luck Dubliners who have shared a life long love of good music and good times, and finally one night in a pub decide to do something about it, forming a old school soul and blues band called The Commitments, which takes them to the heights of fame, and ofcourse, as all movies of bands go, they ofcourse crash down all around themselves. This is one of those great films thats full of great music, great performances, and you can look back at and be amazed at how young a good many actors of note are as they just start out here. Think of it like The Breakfast Club or 10 Things I Hate About You, but for Irish actors. If you are up for it, you could also look up the film versions of the rest of the Barrytown Trilogy too, they don't disappoint either.

8. Suburban Mayhem (2006):
I've always loved when a country thats not the united states takes on a concept that here has become boring and tired simply because of how many films on the same idea are made. However back in 2006 when filmmakers started to make the film festival rounds with the Aussie film Suburban Mayhem, my only real complaint was that it never really got a proper release here in the states outside of a limited run in a select few art house theaters, and never had a proper dvd release. Suburban Mayhem tells the story of Katrina a 19-year-old single mum who's planning to do just that. Katrina lives in a world of petty crime, fast cars, manicures and blow-jobs. A master manipulator of men living at home with her father in suburban Golden Grove, Katrina will stop at nothing to get what she wants - even murder. When her father threatens to contact social services and take away her child, Katrina sets in motion a plan to wreak suburban mayhem that will leave a community in shock and make Katrina infamous in a way even she never dreamed of. Its a great film and a really enjoyable ride from start to finish sure its kind of a art house take on white trash but hey, it doesn't matter cuz its awesome, plus its the film debut of Mia Wasikowska who I'm sue many of you are aware went on to prove her muchness as Alice in Tim Burton's 2010 version of Alice In Wonderland.

7. I Married a Witch (1942):
Now, it goes with out saying, I've always loved the great Veronica Lake, she was after all the original bombshell. And though she's made many a good movie, this overlooked classic to me deserves alot more attention then its ever gotten, its funny, its smart, and its the movie that inspired the classic television series Bewitched, which many years later someone would use their hate of that classic show, as well as their hate of Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrel to create the best forgotten big screen celluloid abortion Bewitched. Though to be fair, after Elf its not really that hard to hate Will Ferrel. Anyway, the plot of this film is pretty simple, but still very funny, a witch named Jennifer and her father are burned at the stake in old Salem Mass. as they're burning, Jennifer curses the puritan judge who's ordered their burning, curses him so that he and all his male descendants marry the wrong woman and are never able to find happiness (haha I love 1940s ideology). Centuries pass and lightening strikes the tree the witch and her father's spirits were trapped in sense the burning, they go around pestering the descendant of the judge though they are only smoke forms, eventually Jennifer convinces her father to make her a human form so she might torment the judge's descendant more personally, the father starts a fire to do so, burning down the pilgram hotel, and thus Jennifer is given a body, and from there, more goofy mishaps and hilarity ensue, 1940s style. This film was great for so many reasons, the twisted tongue in cheek humor; the hotel name, the fact they needed fire to create a body that turned out to be Veronica Lake, making the "she's hot as fire" joke, and even the goofy and silly ending is awesome. Really, you gotta dig this gem up if you haven't seen it and treat yourself to it.

6. They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1969):
Normally I don't much care for Jane Fonda, I tend to have issues with people who side with the enemy against american prisoners of war once the cameras are off, but wave the stars and stripes when the cameras are on. But I guess like in most things, there needs to be one exception to the rule, and for me, its this mostly forgotten classic, based on one of the greatest books of the great depression era. Set at a fictional dance marathon, where in the competitors dance around a ballroom until there are only two left, these marathons, like in the film, had been known in the great depression to last for weeks at a time. And though that could be a good enough film on its own, the film is really infact an allegory for just how long human beings can sink in life, and how sometimes when you have no where lower to go then where you are right now, sometimes, when that tank is completely empty and there is nothing more, and no where to go, not even upwards, that sometimes, some people take their own lives, the film's title infact is a reference to suicide. Its dark, its depressing, its twisted, but its also probably one of the best lost gems of hollywood from back when they weren't scared to offend anyone.

5. I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang (1932):
I mention this film alot, but amazingly, no one's ever seen it, which really battles me beyond belief at times. I argue alot that this might be the greatest prison break film ever made, and that Paul Muni is one of the greatest forgotten actors in American film, but still hardly anyone's ever actually seen this beautiful bit of precode hollywood. And personally, that depresses me. From its brilliant opening scenes all the way to its very last frame, which the director and production staff claim was the result of Muni playing off a light bulb that had gone out as the scene went on, and liking it so much he asked that it be kept in the film's final version this is just brilliant. Its the story of a man who really wasn't a criminal, just down on his luck, who takes a job as a driver for what he later finds out is a bank robbery, even though he's clearly proven to be a first time offender, he is made an example of, just like the rest of the group he's caught with. In prison he changes, he learns how to survive and what he's gotta do to keep himself alive, until he eventually escapes, going underground and resurfacing far from where they'd expect him and under a new name, until he has no choice but to give that life up and run again, this time accepting that he's changed from a down on his luck man in need of a job to a career criminal who has to lie and cheat and steal to survive. Its just so good you really need to see it to fully understand just how good it really is.

4. The Brave One (2007):
For those of you that remember the early days of my blog, and my reviewing history long before that, will remember my raving of just how good this film is, and for the rest of you, well, you really are missing out. Alot of people snarkingly say this film is a loosely done remake of 1981's Ms. 45, much in the way 2005's 16 Blocks was a loosely done remake of 1972's The Gauntlet, meaning it has the same basic plot and concept, just written differently, though personally, I don't see that at all. If I had to compare The Brave One to anything, its basically the origin story of iconic comic book character The Punisher, just done with a woman who was pushed to the brink of sanity after her and her soon to be husband were attacked and robbed in Central Park, leaving her in the hospital for almost a month and her soon to be husband dead, its the story of how her fear kept her prisoner in her own home, and when she was finally able to leave, her anger at the world, and at the police for their dismissing her and not even working on finding her attackers finally leads her to buy herself a gun and get her Bernie Goetz on (the Bernie Goetz subway incident is actually the inspiration for one scene hence the reference), her vigilante spree leads her eventually back to the men that attacked her. I often sight that her first run in with a criminal, taking place inside a small corner store is probably the most intense shoot out I've ever seen, and that includes John Woo movies. Think about that...

3. Magnus (2007):
I happen to just love the hell out of this film, its just so good on so many levels, its meaningful, its funny, and it teaches us that life can be worth living if you stop and look at whats going on around you. In a sense its kind of an estonian made version of Harold and Maude, if Harold and Maude was about a boy and his father, instead of a boy and the older woman that teaches him to live. Magnus tells the story of a young boy who's parents weren't really all that great at parenting, and after he gets sick with a possibly fatal lung illness, he starts to see just how pointless life is, and more importantly, how pointless his own life is, eventually modern medication cures his illness, but it can't sure his feeling of uselessness, and after the second time he attempts to kill himself, Magnus' father sets out to try and show him that life is worth living, this leads to many at times funny, and other times touching and sometimes creepy moments that make up this journey, with out telling you how it really ends, you will either get the massage of the film that life is worth living no matter what it looks like for you where ever you are, or you'll feel like you just got donkey punched with a spiked and bladed set of brass knuckles.

2. The Cube (1969):
Though often confused with other films by the same name, The Cube is a rarity, a non-puppet related made for television movie that was made by the great Jim Henson, the concept has appeared many times sense, where a man trapped in a cubical white room that anyone else could enter and leave, but which he himself apparently could not leave. The main character, simply named "The Man," is subjected to an increasingly puzzling and frustrating series of encounters as a variety of people come through various hidden doors. But as many remind him, he can only leave through his own door, so he must find it. This was only aired twice, but has become sort of a thing of legend in the film buff world, for it being so good, and working so many different elements of different things together, the first write up i ever saw on the film jokingly called it the greatest Twilight Zone episode ever made even if it was years to late to the party. Most though use it as a way of sighting that the great Jim Henson could not only do more then puppetry, but he could tell a serious story that has you enthralled and curious all the way to the end, plus, it does somethign that many shows at the time were scared of doing, it breaks the forth wall and talks about the viewers directly at one point. Truly a great film.

1. Broken Blossoms (1919):
This silent film is probably the lost Hollywood gems of lost Hollywood gems, more times then not over shadowed by other works by Director D.W Griffith combined with actress Lillian Gish, the controversial "Birth Of A Nation" and "Intolerance" normally sighted when speaking of their their collaborations. And though this film's story isn't controversial like Birth Of A Nation, or lavish and grand as Intolerance, Broken Blossoms is a small little love story about a Chinese shop owner who falls in love with the daughter of a cruel and sadistic boxer, he calls her his "broken blossom", whom he first nurses to health after he's beaten in one of her father's drunken rages, its a simple, and at times beautiful, and at other times strikingly sad and graphic, and is the only of Griffith's films that the director claimed till the day he died that he couldn't watch, claiming "the fucking thing depresses me ever so.". The film also has what I, and many others, consider to be the greatest scene filmed in the silent movie era, the scene simply called "The Closet Scene", where in Gish's character running from her father in a drunken rage locks herself in a closet, leaving her trapped and suffering from a very strong case of claustrophobia, and well, what happens once she's in there is pure twisted cinema magic, that when it happened, stopped production on all the films being made around the set, where the screaming and yelling could be heard thinking something wrong, when Gish got out of the closet set, to the shock of everyone thats come by to see what was going on, she looks at the gathered masses, smiles and waves, and goes to sit down, causing Griffith to yell "If you are going to do that shit again, fucking warn me!" followed by everyone clapping. This is truly a thing of beauty, you should see it if you haven't yet.

and thats my list, I hope I've given you all atleast one film to check out, and maybe discover that you love...



Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Kick Ass

Kick Ass:
Best. LARP. E-V-E-R!!!!

Admit it, if you read comic books as a kid, or as an adult, or at any time in between, at one point, you imagined yourself as a superhero. Seriously, be honest here, you know you have, you know you imagined yourself up a name, what your special powers or driving force would be, maybe even drew yourself standing in a heroic pose wearing a suit you designed for yourself, with a word bubble of you proclaiming your very own catchphrase while your name is drawn all logo like under you. Seriously, don't act like you haven't at some point in your life done that, anyone thats ever read a comic book about superheroes has done that. And though we all find ourselves at some point or another daydreaming about our dark and mysterious past that somehow involves us crossing paths with Wolverine (for those that don't know, its law now, every comic book character ever has to have a dark and mysterious past that connects to wolverine somehow.), that bit of our brain that regulates logic and reason always talks us out of every really attempting to get ourselves a suit and get into the crimefighting racket, we make up excuses, things like "I'll get my ass kicked", "I'll get killed.", "I can't do that and have a day job at the same time..", ect, just for a second, imagine what life would be like if you actually did it. If you actually went all out, got yourself a super suit, some superheroing gear, a super cool hero identity, the whole shebang! Can you picture that? Its pretty sweet right? No, its better then sweet, its Kick Ass, because thats what the film Kick Ass is about, a nerdy young kid that decides its time to get his LARP on, real world style, and in the process, truly becomes a hero that the whole city can believe in.

Kick Ass tells the story of mostly invisible to the world comic book nerd Dave Lizewski, who lives in Brooklyn and finds himself wondering "why hasn't anyone ever tried to be a superhero?" alot, looking at the world he lives in where bullies and criminals roam the streets openly committing crime while bystanders just look on doing nothing, or in some cases turn their heads and walk away. After being mugged outside of a comic book shop him and his friends hang out at, Dave finally has had enough, and decides to do it, to make himself a suit, and get his superhero LARP on, but unlike with other forms of LARP, he kind of hopes this will eventually lead him to getting noticed by girls. (remember nerds of the world, live action roleplaying, or LARPing for short is the most powerful cockblocker of all even more then a pocket protector and speaking klingon combined.) Dave orders himself a wetsuit off the internet and after modifying it to fit a design he created one day while daydreaming, he dawns the mantle of Kick Ass, and sets about his career as a superhero. Its slow at first, he doesn't really do alot of ream crimefighting, until he happens across these two thugs that normally torment and harass him seemingly daily, attempting to break into a car, Dave quickly runs into an alleyway, dawns his Kick Ass suit, and a pipe, and decides to take them on, and after mocking his suit and what he's doing, he starts to beat the thugs up, and does rather well, until one of them stabs him in the stomach, after they run away, as he gets to his feet and tries to find a phone to call 911 to get himself to a hospital, he's hit by a car, the driver of which stops, looks back at him, and then drives off. Dave wakes up in the ambulance long enough to ask the EMTs to not tell anyone he was wearing his Kick Ass suit, the EMTs say that his cloths were so bloody that had to be removed in transit for them to work on him to explain his lack of clothing when he gets to the hospital.

the film then jumps forward to Dave's release from the hospital, looking at all the pins in his body on a body x-ray chart, joking that he looks like Wolverine now because of all the metal in his bones, however its unclear if Dave's bones have a dark past with wolverine or not. Dave returns to school where his friends resume teasing and mocking and generally being jerks to him, he's then asked out for coffee by a girl named Katie Deauxma whom he has a massive crush on, he's then explained by his friends that she wants to be his friend because once word got out that he was found with out clothing on, somehow this gets translated into him being gay, much to Dave's shock and horror, but to get to know Katie, he decides to let her think for the time being that he is, because, you know, gay dudes get all the hottest girls, or whatever that song says. After this, he gets his new Kick Ass suit in the mail, including now holders for two nightstick style batons, which he carries on his back much like swords. Dave now creates a myspace page for Kick Ass and sets out to patrol the streets at night doing public services and the like, when looking for a cat named Mr. Bitey, Dave accidentally happens into what looks like some sort of fight, accidentally tripping the man running from a group of thugs. Seeing whats going on Dave jumps into action, first telling a nearby teenager to call 911, and then jumping in to defend the beaten man. The teenager runs into the diner nextdoor and yells "there is a guy dressed like a superhero fighting a group of gangbangers outside.... ITS FUCKING AWESOME!!" and runs over to the front of the building to film it, everyone getting out their video and camera phones to record it as well. As Dave holds the thugs off, one asks if he really wants to risk his life for one worthless person, Dave replies "three assholes beating up one guy while everyone just watches? Yeah I'd rather die." the thugs hear police sirins in the distance and run off, the beaten man thanks Dave as he checks to make sure he's ok, the teenager who called the police runs over with his camera phone and says "that was fucking awesome!! who are you?" Dave looks right in the camera and says "I'm Kick Ass..". That video gains world wide attention and becomes the most viewed video on the internet, the whole world is talking about Kick Ass now, everyone loves him and what he's doing, Kick Ass becomes one of the most friended people on myspace, where he says if he's needed, he can be contacted. This puts him into the spotlight, but also puts him on the radar of Frank D'Amico a major criminal in New York City, as well as on the radar of Damon Macready and his daughter Mindy, who are also going around under the vale of being superheroes Big Daddy and Hit-Girl, intent on taking down Frank for framing Damon and sending him to jail for years, causing Damon's wife to commit suicide, dying not long after giving birth to Mindy, who was raised by Damon's best friend and former police partner until Damon was released from prison. Damon and Mindy vary from Kick Ass by the fact they sort of have a very violent Robin Hood like approach, using the money they take from the criminals they foil and in some cases murder to fund their war on D'Amico. Damon and Mindy decide they can work with Kick Ass and mold him into a better hero, they help him deal with a small time drug dealer and then later appear to him in his bedroom explaining he needs to be more careful, and that they will be in touch, then telling him how to contact them if he is ever in need of them. Dave kind of sits on his bed completely spooked at this point, thinking he's in far over his head, but snaps out of it and realizes he is needed and continues on.

From there the film starts to branch out and tell the story of both Dave and Damon and Mindy, and how they both keep interchanging with Frank D'Amico believing that its Kick Ass taking out his men and stealing his drugs and selling them, and after many failed attempts at dealing with Kick Ass, Frank's son Chris decides to take matters into his own hands, under the guise of The Red Myst, another superhero with alot more tech and his own website. He puts out a message to Kick Ass to meet up, which they do, and before Red Myst can take Kick Ass to the ambush his dad has put up, Damon and Mindy hit Frank's men at their business front, killing them and lighting the place on fire. And from there, the film starts to pick up, as everyone starts to move themselves into position and where they're going to be for the endgame, Dave unaware or what is going on, Frank preparing to destroy whoever has been destroying his business, and Damon starts to put his plan into action, gathering what he needs to finally take down Frank an vindicate his years away, and the suicide of his wife. Its really goes from a brilliant story of a nerd out having himself the ultimate live action role play session while all of New York City watches on and cheers, to a non-super powered superhero game of chess on level with like a Batman or Punisher story arc that would leave people talking for years to come, and with the promise of both more comics and films in the Kick Ass world, the ending leaves you hungry and excited for more. As well as wondering how to become your own kind of superhero.... and remembering your hot classic literature teacher from high school.

So the big question, was this film really any good outside of the superhero genre? Sure, I think your average movie viewer would rather like the film, after all who doesn't like a good mental chess game, even if half of the players are unaware they're playing chess at all? Some people might be a tad shocked by Mindy's rather filthy mouth, but for an 11 year old who's an expert trained killer, who also has almost no problem at all slaughtering criminals and thugs, though why of all that swearing coming out of the mouth of an 11 year old being your biggest issue, I have no idea. But in general, the film is really alot of fun and exciting and a good way to just shut off your brain and enjoy the action and fun of it, you won't really be let down if you do so.

And for those not sold yet, here is the trailer...



Sunday, August 8, 2010


Every Small Town Has Its Secrets

I've always sort of had a love/hate relationship with the works of Stephen King, ever sense a random encounter with him in Bangor Maine left me seeing him for what I'm assuming is who he really is, its funny, there are times that regardless of the bitter taste that encounter left with me, I can not help but be in awe of his creative brilliance and his way of telling a story, but there are also times I just can not stand him or how contrived some of his work turns out to be, I tend to be more critical on his television work, believing that his written for film scripts, and books adapted for film are all pretty good, I mean there is no way you can hate The Green Mile, The Shawshank Redemption, The Shining, Stand By Me, ect, they're all classics, but when it comes to television, thats where his work sometimes breaks down, at one end, you have things like IT and The Stand and Kingdom Hospital, or The Dead Zone tv series which were all amazing and brilliant, but sometimes you end up with Nightmares and Dreamscapes or Storm Of The Century, or horrible abortion of airwaves that tried to cast Bronson Pinchoe fresh off playing completely shit character Balkey Bartakamus on Perfect Strangers, in a serious role, I still have nightmares about that.

Thankfully for all of us, Stephen's newest project, the sci fi series Haven, falls into the catagory of greatness, which delights me to no end, simply because I hated Nightmares and Dreamscapes and have been waiting for a good sci fi series to replace the television version of The Dead Zone, which I'm still upset was canceled with out warning afew years back. Haven combines alot of the elements that are predominate and King's work; a small town in Maine that is far away from the big cities and holds lots of deep dark secrets just under the surface, people with strange and mysterious powers that no one can explain, but everyone seems to not be shocked by or fear them because of, a wise young cop that understands and adapts to keeping law and order regardless of the people in his town and what they can do, the mysterious stranger who rolls into town looking for something, then ends up staying to solve a bigger mystery about themselves, and the town itself, the confusing and dark loner that operates on both the good and bad sides of the mysterious ways of the small town, and ofcourse the oddities that are small town people with out powers or anything like that of Maine. Haven's got them all, and they are all played brilliantly, its rare that a show gets cast perfectly, let alone is acted perfectly too, this series really is a small bit of gold in a bleak and drab world, just as it portrays.

Haven is based on King's book "The Colorado Kid", and tells the story of Audrey Parker, and FBI agent thats not above looking outside the textbook for the answer that'll solve a case, in the opening scene of the pilot she's mockingly referenced to be like Fox Maulder of The X-Files, believing there is always a possibility that the answer could be outside the realm of conventional belief and at times something paranormal. Her boss both loves and hates this about her, he sends her to Haven, a small fishing town in northern Maine to retrieve an escaped fugitive, only to first discover that the man was killed by means of something appearing to be supernatural, but eventually when handed a picture by the brothers that run the local newspaper, discovers that her mother, who left her at an orphanage where she was raised in state care till she was 18 years old, might have actually been in Haven many years ago, wanting to find out who her mother was, and why she was in Haven, she eventually agrees to join the Haven police force in hopes of researching and talking to the locals and maybe finding some clues to her mother, or atleast some link the family she never knew was out there. While she is in Haven, Audrey is paired up with local cop Nathan Wournos, the son of town's police chief and has a rare medical condition that does not allow him to feel pain, other then that he's your stereotypical small town cop, he knows everyone and everyone knows him, and the only person he doesn't really like is the other main character of the show, local shady fishing boat owner Duke Crocker, whom he not only sees as a rival when it comes to Audrey, but apparently has always been at odds with him, at one point Nathan actually states the only way Duke is gonna die would be when he kills him himself. Most cases seem to involve the three of them in some form or another, though its to early in the series to tell how just yet, well unless you've read the book, but thats cheating!

The series is rather good as a whole, sure people will draw connections to other shows or recent years, it does have a sort of X-Files/Fringe vibe to it, and it is sort of Eureka meets Heroes in another way, but as I've said many times, sometimes its best to just let your mind stop over analyzing things and just enjoy it, because sometimes you accidentally ruin a good show by comparing it to other things out there, which judging by the feedback I've read on the net seems to be happening. Plus, how can you hate on a show thats got the great John Dunsworth in his first american television role as a newspaper owner and reporter, not so long after playing the great Jim Lahey on the canadian cult series Trailer Park Boys. Can't ask for more then that. Haven is a fun and smart mix of sci fi, comedy, drama, and offbeat, that if you give it a chance, will become a favorite of yours in no time. The beautiful locations that truly feel like they could be any small town in northern Maine, that you just happen to be driving into with out realizing it, and the townsfolk really do look and act like the kind people you would find in Maine's small fishing towns, even if they all seem to have some strange special power or another, it really was an enjoyment to watch, and I for for hope it lasts for awhile.



Thursday, August 5, 2010


When I was a kid, this show was the bomb.... It is ofcourse the english dub of Space Battleship Yamato, one of the greatest animes of all time..

I so wanted my own Wave Motion Gun...

Serious, between this, Battle of The Planets, Voltron, Captain Harlock and The Transformers, its like a five way tie for my favorite cartoon of all time...



Monday, August 2, 2010

The 30 Worst Films Of All Time Pt. 3

and here is my top 10...

10. Xanadu (1980):
Oh my god, it would be alot easier to make a list of things that are NOT wrong with this film, because really, this is one of the biggest trainwrecks there has ever been, Olivia Newton John with her aussie accent playing a muse of ancient greek mythology, the fact roller disco was completely dead by the time 1980 rolled around, the fact this film killed the career of Michael Beck who was riding that wave of popularity that 1979's The Warriors gave him, or, possibly the worst part of this whole thing for me, is that this travesty is the final nail in the film career of once hollywood icon Gene Kelly, who was never seen on the big screen ever again after this celluloid abortion made its way to the theaters. The film tells the story of Sonny (played by Michael Beck, Swan from The Warriors), and how he falls in love with this roller skating girl who crashes into him, then kisses him, near the start of the film, he eventually finds her in what used to be a big band auditorium thats now abandoned, she tells him her name is Kira but will tell him nothing else as she skates around the empty building. After guiding Sonny to a partnership with a former big band leader turned construction mogul (played by Gene Kelly), and to eventually start a night club with him, a roller disco called Xanadu, after Kubla Khan's Pleasure Garden of the same name. Eventually you discover that Kira is really Terpsichore, the muse of dance, and as I'm sure you've guessed, Kira eventually falls in love with Sonny, and the two are very happy, until Kira up and leaves him. You know, because thats what you do when you love someone, you eventually leave them, because you're the Olympian muse of dance, and you can't be tied down to just one man! With an ass like yours from all the dancing, you gotta play the field!

9. Teenagers From Outer Space (1956):
Oh what a twisted, sad and curious little film with a twisted, sad and curious film this one is. Teenagers From Outer Space is as much a story so bad that Ed Wood and Uwe Boll wouldn't even touch it, as it is the twisted and depressingly tragic story of the cheapest film ever made, and how it ruined lives, and drove its director to lose his mind, and then commit suicide. Teenagers From Outer Space is the story of a young man named Derick who decides to stop his people from destroying the population of the earth to turn the planet into their raising grounds for these giant lobster like creatures his people eat, and eventually finds peace but in the end gives up his life to save the earth, in lieu of allowing his people to take the planet from the humans. The film is, as I'm sure you've guessed is completely useless and with out the backstory of tragedy and insanity, this film, however bad it is, would have been completely forgotten by history, and regarded as something so bad even Ed Wood would have called it terrible. And really, its the backstory that makes us all remember it, its the story of how a man who would later travel around Los Angeles and surrounding areas walking into church services proclaiming he was the lord Jesus Christ, claiming everyone there was a sinner, destroyed every single friendship he'd ever had, and eventually killed himself, all to make a shitty movie about space lobsters and jerks with rayguns all for under $14,000.oo which back then was seen as really cheap, and is infact the cheapest film ever made.

8. The Robot vs. The Aztec Mummy (1957):
I've always made jokes that if you wanna see an entire film industry thats completely aimed at camp fun, then look no farther then the film industry of our neighbor to the south, Mexico. From all Spanish versions of american films, to the great El Santo and all the other Luchadors that where made into film stars, to their take on just about everything, its like Poverty Row Hollywood studios of the 1930s, but with a spicy latin flavor to it. The Robot Vs. The Aztec Mummy was sort of the hight of Mexicheese, where in two mad scientists do their best to deal with a cursed mummy that they plan on stealing from the tomb of by building a robot to deal with it, and those who try and stop them from making it all happen, for some reason, I guess because graverobbing is wrong or something. Anyway this is one of those silly little crank out as many as we can films, being the follow up to two other films in the aztec mummy series that were released earlier in the year. Its just nuts really, plus the robot kind of looks like Bender from Futurama which is awesome as hell too when you think about it.

7. Thor Vs. The Amazon Women (1964):
This is one of those films that you just have to laugh at, from the title, to the acting, to the fact its whats refered to as a "sword and sandles" film, meaning its a europian wizardry film, normally italian, like this film is. Thor, is not the Thor of norse lore, he's just some random strongman named Thor who's the friend of the children of a murdered king, he's their sort of protector, and has to save the older sibling, the beautiful Tamarr is kidnapped by the same man hating Amazons that killed her father, Thor decides its time for him and his slave that affirmative action forgot, need to get their asskicking on, which they do, fighting the Amazons and "the Beast That Kills Women" to get her back. You don't really expect much from movies like this, they're really only about a rung above things with titles that start with "the erotic adventures of.." and the like, so its not exactly gonna be Citizen Kane, but of what they are, this one is clearly the worst, its just so flawed, the sets look fake, the monster looks fake as hell, and its very obvious that alot of these people are wearing badly attached to their head wigs, I mean like so bad its kind of silly they even tried.

6. Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964):
This is one of those films thats name just makes you chuckle, and makes you wonder if it really is just as horrible as the name implies, and guess what? It really is as bad as you think, actually wait, no, its worse. It basically goes like this; Martian kids are watching to much earth television, and with Christmas coming they fear that the children will watch to rebel against Martian beliefs and rigidly strict structure, however after a change of heart, they decide to instead of banning the children from watching television, to simply just kidnap Santa Clause and force him to bring christmas and toys to the children of Mars. This ofcourse pisses off ol'Father Christmas who, like Dylan Thomas, doesn't go gently into that good night, but is overpowered by the little green horde of kidnappers. Anyway eventually as this horrible assault on the eyes and ears progresses, as you can guess, Santa uses the power of Christmas to beat the martians and because he's such a nice guy, he leaves the nicest martian there is as Mars' official Santa Clause, complete with worship and his own midget slaves. Its seriously horrible, the whole idea, the whole film, everything about this should be locked in the same vault as the star wars christmas special and left to rot.

5. Hitler, Beast of Berlin (1939):
I wanted to makes sure there is atleast one of the propaganda films of the world war 2 era, and though I would have rathered it be a german one, but well, honestly their films were just so beautifully shot. So that leaves us to deal with american made "boo and hiss" propaganda films, Boo and Hiss propaganda films are sort of like what cult classics Reefer Madness and The Pace That Kills and other drug awareness movies that came off as hilariously bad today fall into, they were designed to make the world hate whatever the thing they were against was, by horrifying it and making you hate it completely, this was adapted into the anti-german sentiment during world war 2 rather well, and though I applaud the attempt, a full 2 years before America was dragged into the war abroad, I have to find the out and out villainy of this film to be funny, it literally stops short of saying Adolf Hitler eats babies and the Nazi Party kick puppies. And though I am rather sure if anyone was going to eat live babies, and kick puppies, I'm sure it would be that wacky Adolf Hitler Un Das Heir Nazi Bunch, I just find all of this so very hilarious. The plot is so thin, basically, an anti-nazi german newspaper owner and his wife get kidnapped and sent to a camp where they're mistreated and tormented like the jews they sympathize with... This film was so pushed on the american people, they was released three times with recuts and adding of more footage of hitler and the SS getting their goosestepping on, twice in the years before America entered the war, and once near the end, each time under a different name and each time no one noticed, whats that tell you about each of the American public?

4. Myra Breckinridge (1970):
And here we go, you couldn't have a list of the worst films of all time, its just a must. Myra Breckinridge was based on a book of the same name by modern master of literature Gore Vidal, however unlike the critically acclaimed book, this film was just a completely twisted and unsettlingly wrong film that did nothing more then confuse and shock its viewers, and it still does to this day infact. The basic plot of this film is this, Myron Breckinridge (played by future film critic and fan of the Gene Shallot stash, Rex Reed) is a young confused man who sees Raquel Welch in One Million BC, and falls so far in love with her that he wants to become her, like literally, so he goes to a doctor and decides to have himself some penis removal surgery, so he can look in the mirror every day and feel up Raquel Welch, and that she'll love it. So Myron gets his surgery on, and walks up as his new self, Myra Breckinridge, who promptly goes completely insane, no, really, becoming the definition of 1960s hotness made Myra completely insane, she goes around rampaging, and at one point raping a young doctor by tying him down to a table and violating him with a fake penis. Combine that with the fact that this is Mae West's final film, and the first acting jobs for both Tom Selleck and Farrah Fawcett, and you just have a giant steaming pile of WTF that there is really just no way of ever being able to fully recover from.

3. Robot Monster (1953):
So when you think of the words "robot" and "monster" and even in their combined form, does a gorilla suit with a diving bell helmet and television antenna come to mind? If not, well then you've never had to witness the spectacle of camp at its best that is Robot Monster, one of Ed Wood's defining films, and one of the most hilariously bad films there has ever been. Here is the plot; The evil alien "Ro-Man" has destroyed all but eight humans on Earth with his death ray, the "Calcinator". Survivors include a family of five, a scientist, and two unseen assistants to the scientist in a spacecraft bound for an orbiting space platform carrying a garrison of human soldiers. All eight have developed an immunity to the death ray as a side effect of an antibiotic serum developed by the scientist. Ro-Man must destroy these survivors before his invasion of Earth is complete. He is waylaid in his mission after developing an attraction towards Alice, the eldest daughter of the family. He refuses to eliminate her, forcing "The Great Guidance", leader of the aliens, to personally finish the unsavory task. Finally the young boy apparently wakes up, revealing the entire film was presumably a dream. Robot Monster is the second cheapest film ever made, clocking in at a budget claimed to be near $16,000.oo, and apparently shot at the same area where the outer areas for the batcave in the 1960s Batman series, and cult television series Gillian's Island filmed their exterior shots, which is literally on the side of the highway in Santa Monica California, which doesn't actually suit well for a movie about the last humans on the planet, and the robot monster who loves one of them... This really is a must watch for horrible film nights.

2. Plan 9 From Outer Space (1959):
Here it is, the film most people would have assumed would be my worst film ever, but it comes up just shy of the bullseye, this film has almost everything you will ever need for a horrible film, confusing casting, confusing story thats written so thin that a wet paper towel could hold more stress then it, and the fact it "starred" Béla Lugosi, 3 years after he had died, seriously, you could drive yourself insane trying to make sense of this film really, its so infamous that the mid 1990s film Ed Wood centered around the filming of it, because it was just as completely insane as the film itself. Here is its plot; The plot of the film is focused on extraterrestrial beings who are seeking to stop humans from creating a doomsday weapon that would destroy the universe. In the course of doing so, the aliens implement "Plan 9", a scheme to resurrect Earth's dead as zombies to get the planet's attention, causing chaos. As many know, I'll always have some love for the film because of it starring my dear friend Maila Nurmi, and the story behind how she came to be in the film is just hilarious in itself, and makes it a giant shining testimony toward the simple fact that no matter how insane it might be, any one's vision can become reality through the world of film. Even if that vision involves using body doubles and old stock footage to make a dead man seem to be in your film, even when he's not alive to avoid starring in your film.

1. The Beast Of Yukka Flats (1961):
And finally we've come to the end of the Shrubbery maze, the final film on our countdown, the worst film of all time, the worst of the worst, the stank of the stank, the greatest pantload of all... Ladies and Gentlemen I give to you, The Beast Of Yukka Flats, this is the most confusing, unsettling, and down right bad film I have ever seen, its just this whole mess from the start to the very end. The film starts with a nude woman getting out of a shower and then these two hands reaching out and choking her as she screams to death. You then get yourself into the film, a russian turncoat is getting off a plane at a secret US airstrip in the Yukka Flats, with him is a briefcase of russia's top secrety secrets about secrets, but a double agent tries to kill him before he can pass the briefcase off to the US Secret Service, this spooks him, he drops the case and runs into the sands of Yukka Flats, where he's exposed to radiation and somehow becomes The Beast, The Beast Of Yukka Flats, and goes on a rampage. This film is seriously a disjointed and completely confusingly bad mess. Plus, the opening scene has nothing at all rest of the film! It was tossed in by the director "because he wanted a nude scene", its seriously insane. Its just completely wrong... so very wrong. Also, its the inspiration for The Incredible Hulk, so go that!

Dishonorable Mentions: Honestly, there are so many I can't count...