This cover left off the name of the band, and I'm wondering if that was a marketing decision. I somehow doubt it, considering the target audience and the country of origin. The band is Murder Rape. The country is Brazil. The subset is black metal. The album cover is mammoth. If it seems like all of my picks for Album Cover of the Whatever deal with evil shit, it's because they deal with evil shit. I dig evil shit! On a sidenote, the album itself - Murder Rape's second full-length - is a deadly, atmospheric billet of abnegation. It hates you. It's choice.
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 8:00 PM
Was it really necessary to indicate a year? Yes. There is a spattering of films called The Sandman, including an animated short from 1991 that I recommend. It's only ten minutes long. Super creepy. Anypiss, you also have Sleepstalker, which is about a killer on death row who is turned into a sandman by way of runic prestidigitation. Ironically (it's not ironic at all), that fright feature came out in 1995 as well. The arenicolous mazuma (or sand dollar...I don't see why I should do things the easy way) I'm reviewing was directed by cult maestro J.R. Bookwalter, the b-buff responsible for The Dead Next Door and Zombie Cop. If a reader wants to send me all of Bookwalter's films on VHS, I do have an electronic mail address located in the top-right hand corner of the page. How 'bout that? I'm going to let that sit with you for a minute. Drink it in, man.
The Sandman bears an exceptionally simple plot. Gary is a romance novelist whose insomnia keeps him up at odd hours writing. What else would he be doing? One scary night, he sees two red eyes glaring at him through the blinds. He rushes outside to find a neighbor's dog torn in half. Everyone assumes that a bigger dog did the damage, but Gary isn't convinced. Eventually, he learns the truth, as does the viewer. It's The Sandman! A centuries-old creature who manipulates your dreams and slaughters you when you wake up. That may sound Freddy-like (and it is), but Bookwalter (who also co-authored the screenplay) tweaked the mythos just enough to give The Sandman his own stroke, his own jingle-jangle. For example, the victim has a happy dream before it turns sour and the corpse-in-training gains consciousness.
I haven't leaked much opinion into this audit yet, but I liked The Sandman. It was fun. An aspect I have failed to mention thus far is the setting. The story takes place in a trailer park. Horror addicts know that monsters and trailer parks are always a winning combination. The opening credits are fantastic if you're like me and you enshrine "small town" terrors. I have family members who live in identical trailer parks. Forgive me for feeling gooey (for the scenery, not the family members). Bookwalter's early output was shot on 8mm, but this was shot on...a higher number? I wear a dunce cap as it relates to the technical side of filmmaking. My estimation is 16mm. Eh, all I'll say is that it looks more professional.
Of course, The Sandman is still a low-budget production. IMDb jackasses drub and sound off on the beast effects. Yeah, they're cheap, but I thought the titular baddie looked boss. He's basically a colossal grim reaper with matching accessories. That sickle was sick, yo! It was a sick sickle! In a sense, this is atypical Bookwalter mania. I pinpointed no gore, no nudity, no gore and no gore. I hate to come across as a slabbering bloodhound, but that was a slight inefficacy. On the positive end of the eigenvector (???), I was able to direct my attention on the moving picture without red stuff. On the negative end of that very same eigenvector (I seriously don't know), there is a surplus of useless side characters. Cousin Ozzy? Why even bother? Did he die? Did he move out? Do I give a fuck?
My rating might seem a shaving high. The truth is that I treasure any smaller film that makes me feel emotions that the bulk of $200 million tentpole releases don't. I'm pretty sure you're not supposed to end a sentence with "don't," but fuck it. Hey, did the "trailer park" scene in Rawhead Rex give you a throbbing whistle? Then check out The Sandman.
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 11:51 PM
Did you guess The Soda Jerk? No one did! I probably won't keep the series going beyond this six-issue run, unless I happen upon other rare, hard-to-find sodas. Here's the thing(amajig); I found these bubbly waters at a Cracker Barrel of all places. I mean, they usually sell sodas in glass bottles, but the last time I was there, I spotted a twat-ton of pops (this will be the only instance where I use that term, Mr. Hakari). Without further bullshit...
HOLLYWOOD'S ORIGINAL SHIRLEY TEMPLE
I'm not reviewing the mixed drink. Nope, I'm reviewing the soda based on the mixed drink inspired by the actress. Granted, there isn't much of a difference. Neither libation* is alcoholic. But Hollywood's Original has their own recipe, which contains a couple of secret ingredients. It would be funny if one of those ingredients was vodka. I swear, and this is my doltish tongue speaking, my bottle of Shirley Temple tasted a tiny bit alcoholic. I know it's not. See, a lovely pill I am currently taking stupefies my 'buds (that's how cool fuckers write it), and certain brews/vittles taste "off." So who knows? More importantly, did I just invalidate this column revival? My tongue still works 95% of the time, so read on, you bitch-candied bandicoot.
It took 25 years, but my "soda" seeds finally grew.
For starters, why don't you stare at that beautiful label? Hot pink and turquoise...my two favorite colors. I'm not kidding. I've always wanted to see those two colors twined as a result of some kind of promotional contrivance. Like The New Day's ring gear! If I ever saw a can in the aluminum flesh, I might faint. I bet Shirley tastes better from a can. On a sweltering summer day. Condensation dripping from her body. Why do I have an erec--woah, I got carried away there, didn't I? Anyway, the beverage. When it hits the palate, there is an initial gust of chilled nip. A coolness. Dare I say, a freshness. The aftertaste isn't as gracious, in my expert opinion. I enjoyed my experience with Shirley (am I reviewing a female escort?), but she was a tangy broad.
The flavor of a Shirley Temple is typically described as "cherry-ish, with pomegranate." Before imbibing this baby, I had never tried one, so I can't comment on accuracy. I'm envisioning a bartender producing a half-full glass of generic cherry cola, adding a cup (or whatever) of Sun Drop, mixing in grenadine, and finally, jazzing it all up with a splash of orange juice. I was hoping for something closer to sarsaparilla, but it...well, it wasn't. It was fruity and almost acidic. Again, I'm not mad at it. A whole big bunch of mortals seem to dig it just fine. Plus, hot pink and turquoise. I'm dumb enough to buy a case solely for the color scheme. Judge me. I don't care.
*I understand that libations by definition contain alcohol. I was using the term in a loose, metaphorical way. I'm full of whimsy. That's why I'm so goddamn lovable.
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 10:42 AM
That's the reaction most people have to the Amityville sequels (past the second entry anyway), but yesterday, I took in Amityville 1992: It's About Time, and I thought it was slushy fun. No, I couldn't find anything else to watch. Yes, this is the one with the evil clock. Most of the Amity adventures after part deux catch flack for their whacked narratives. See here, my dysmorphic tribe...if you are mature enough to give the actual movies a chance ("I know I am," he said, looking down at the lowborn, declassed peasants), you'll see that they are entertaining spookshows. They're certainly not spooky, but they're showy as shit!
I've seen quite a few of them. Amityville 3-D rocks, and you know it. The Amityville Curse was enjoyable, but I admit that details are sketchy. Apart from the flavorless remake, the only other chapter I have witnessed is Amityville Dollhouse. Again, batty gimmick, but I recall digging it. So what's your problem? Huh? Maybe different folks have different opinions. Nah, that sounds like an urban legend.
Okay, let me reference the elephant on the toilet. I still haven't posted the six-part "old column" project because I need my mom's help to kickstart it. Her work schedule has not afforded us the opportunity to do the things. The things will seem simple to you, but it takes more time for us. If I don't believe I can get it up and running by Sunday night, I'll just skip ahead to the next review. Rest assured, it will happen!
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 8:56 PM
I love having the El Rey Network. I got it via Sling TV via Roku via DIRECT TV FUCKING SUCKS MY COMPASSIONATE ROD! Anyway, yeah. Roku is where it's at. My plan is to stay in bed tomorrow morning and absorb El Rey's Kickboxer marathon. Yes! Next week, I will focus on the "old column" thing. I'm excited, bro.
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 8:28 PM
I did a Google image search for Worth Keeter and this shiftless son of a bitch popped up. No idea who it is, but I don't believe it's Mr. Keeter. Who knows? Maybe it is. Maybe Worth has tapped out. Maybe...he's worthless. Fuck, I apologize. I should be above that joke, but you and I both know it's the other way around. Who is Worth Keeter??? You shiftless son of a bitch! You should know that he's a bottom-rung b-reel director, an etiolated dabbler in all genres. I'm most interested in his fright fucklings. Baby, if you haven't seen 1979's Wolfman (his directorial debut), then sugar, get out of my trailer. This was actually his debut as a writer as well. To say it's rough around the edges would be an understatement. It's closer to disheveled around the edges.
Speaking of disheveled, have you met Earl Owensby? He produced this effort, and since he was holding the cash, he decided to cast himself as the lead. Note that he possessed neither the looks nor the acting chops to lead Chairman of the Board, much less a Southern-fried werewolf lark. Wolfman is awful, but it's not awful. Right-o. Sweetie, it has a certain charm, and it's brimming with Hammer-style atmosphere. I don't know what it says about my criminal background, but I found this flick easy to finish. Look, I can't change who I am. Honey pie, where are you going? Give me a chance! Again!
And on the left/right (lol wtf ikr), you will see Kristy Swanson's fly ass in 1992's Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I never watched the show. It always seemed like a teenybopper pursuit, and any time I tuned in, it felt...well, it felt like a teenybopper pursuit. I'm open to the idea of giving it another shot. I enjoyed the motion picture, which I recently picked up on videocassette. The first half is a whiff too scattershot. I am told that the TV series more closely resembles the second half, so that's a foretoken of benediction, wouldn't you say? Well, wouldn't you? DEREK? I'm hoping to really catch someone off-guard one of these days with my random name call-outs. They are going to freak out, especially if I add a last name and it syncs up. That's an idea!
Isn't it, KAREN RILEY?
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 10:39 AM
The last few days have been so fucking serious. Watching the news only adds to my square mix of anxiety and paranoia every time I leave the house (which I actively avoid). Fuck. And then there is THIS. You're supposed to click "this." Go ahead. I'll wait. Right, so I've been worrying about that, although the immediate response from friends and family did lift my heart. I was not expecting to meet the fixed goal in 24 hours, much less exceed it. I knew I had good friends, but I was honestly blown away.
After all of this serious stuff, I miss things that don't matter. I'll dive back into the trash pond soon, kiddies...
After all of this serious stuff, I miss things that don't matter. I'll dive back into the trash pond soon, kiddies...
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 9:06 PM
A current release! I haven't touched one of those in awhile, so this film must be awfully special. Or just something I wanted to cover. Actually, I've been looking forward to 2016's Baskin since I first started seeing the hideous trailers for it last year. It's a Turkish import, and it has a reputation as an odious, insalutary maggot of a movie that has caused walk-outs at festivals. Potentially, it could end up as the latest A Serbian Film, although it's not quite as extreme (and frankly, I think theater patrons are too jaded to carelessly create another "shock classic" on recoil alone). We begin with a van full of cops. They stop at a diner, they shoot the shit, they bully their waiter, they speak Turkish...y'know, typical dickhead activities (no offense to Turkey). Then they receive a disturbing call for backup.
And that's all I'm synopsisizzling. Honestly, the trailer reveals a glut of key imagery and most reviews broadcast way too many plot details. Go in fresh, if at all possible. That may not affect your overall opinion of Baskin. You can probably infer that from my rating, but I recommend it. I was pleased. I enjoyed its zalcroom ass-prex, as the kids say. Unfortunately, crackwhores in the foundation present themselves as the story arc gains ground. Primo (Italian for "first"), I want to propose a toast to director Can Evrenol. You would never guess that this was his first feature gig, what with the rich lighting and the marble-smooth camera movements. Even dialogue scenes dazzle. I was worried that the spooks would be shot in an epileptic manner (no offense to spooks), but apart from an introductory bit, that doesn't become a problem.
The gore is gory. I'm not privy to the budget, but everything looks fantastic. On the acting front, I have no gripes. The Father is a veritable villain. Across the board, the creepy stuff is creepy. If I had to quibble, it feels at times like Baskin is straining to emulate Hellraiser. The Father's pseudo-philosophical palaver means jack shit, and I kept waiting for the protagonists to simply ask, "Huh?" The first half of this foreign object hums. Isn't that what car people say about quality engines? They hum? Whatever. The first half is really good. Zip it. The second half tries to get cute. Don't get me wrong; that's where the chassis of the violence has been interred. The chassis is the body of a car, right? Stop making fun of me.
Baskin ripens into demented territory, but as it carouses with waking nightmares, it makes less and less sense. In my stir-fried opinion, you have to be careful with dream sequences. I'm trying to tiptoe around spoilers. I can safely say that the ending pissed me off without spoiling a damned thing. It's such a cliched genre denouement. Was it tacked on by someone who didn't watch the rest of Baskin? Because I could believe it. It's, shall we say, bullshit (Italian for "first"). For those curious, the title, when translated in English, means "first" in Italian (Italian for "first"). Robert Z'Dar says, "I had my hopes up for more baby rape. I didn't walk out once!"
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 4:18 AM
Upcoming! I'll be dusting off a retired, long-forgotten column that I used to write in the olden days of Random Reviews Incorporated. It will be a six-part series. What will it be??? I doubt that anyone even remembers the original column. We're talking seven years ago. I didn't bother archiving it, so you would have to be a hardcore fan to name it out of limbo. The number of hardcore RR Inc. fans totals in the negative tens. You're free to guess. It's true; the above painting...er, photograph...okay, statue is a clue. Can you solve the puzzle? Do you care? What if I die never knowing the feeling of being embraced by a beautiful woman?
I'll probably write another movie review before doing that thing. Hail Satan!
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 5:13 PM
Sometimes, you don't get around to seeing a certain movie that is right up your alley. Scientists will never discover why, and for years, Freaked has been one of those contingencies for me. It's a rainbow-skewbald horror/comedy (mostly comedy, if I'm being upfront with you) starring and co-directed by Alex Winter. From the image I have chosen, it may seem like z-junk, but it actually commanded a budget of $11 million. That's paper money! Most of those banknotes were funneled straight into the special effects department. As the title suggests, the plot implicates freakishly freakish freaks. Winter plays Ricky Coogan, an actor who agrees to do promotional work for a chemical company, and you could probably finish this synopsis yourself.
The poor bastard is victimized by Randy Quaid's freak machine. I promise that sounds worse than it is, but it does result in moldered, gangrenous creatures. Aren't those the best kind? They were designed, in part, by Screaming Mad George. Those freaked in Freaked range from nauseating to preposterous (I dug Sockhead, as voiced by Bobcat Goldthwait). This is a fun flick to look at, but it's also just plain funny. I laughed on a regular basis, and I deplore the corpus of American comedy. Freaked is instantly quotable. And the soundtrack! That tune with Henry Rollins and Blind Idiot God is a fucking jam. Keep a Rastafarian eyeball out for cameos by Brooke Shields, Morgan Fairchild and Deep Roy. In addition, see if you can spot Keanu Reeves. Get it? See? Spot? Go!
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 2:01 PM