Monday, December 22, 2008
Thursday, December 11, 2008
For me, the UK based Mondo Macabro label have not just put out a great cross-section of global trashploitation, but they also have the most interesting documentaries on their discs. You can always tell a lot of research and creative work went into them. And everything from the well written and highly informative liner notes to the other DVD extras, hell, even the dang covers, tells you these bloke's hearts are in the right place. To paraphrase Harry Flowers, these gentlemen "enjoy their work" and it shows. And now, being the conno-sewers of fine taste that they be, they've axed permission to quote yours truly on the front of their upcoming DVD release "Female Prisoner: Caged"!
Yes, by quoting Horrorwitz on the front of this DVD (apparently Leonard Maltin was unavailable) MM have reached a new low! But you know, like all smart people, they realize that it's sometimes good to have friends in low places! And having that Trash Palace seal of approval only helps them to ensure the public that "Female Prisoner: Caged!" is 100% grade-A sleaze! (Which it is!) An early 1980s entry from Japan's Nikkatsu studios, I can promise you this: If you are a fan of women-in-prison films in general, if you enjoy seeing large-breasted Asian women beat the sushi out of each other, then this one will not disappoint! This is the third Nikkatsu DVD from MM and I for one am glad that these obscure Japanese movies are finally getting some international releases (with English subtitles too! Joy!).
Amongst the many enjoyable Mondo Macabro releases are some long time personal favorites of mine: Juan Lopez Moctezuma's fierce supernatural nun horror film "Alucarda" and his chaotic, quirky and surreal Poe-based art horror "Mansion of Madness"; "Paris Sex Murders", the totally nutso Giallo with an all-star Euro-trash cast; Michel Lemoine's delirious Sadian horror "Seven Women for Satan"; the highly underrated dreamy French horror thriller "Blood Rose"; and the very best Jess Franco movie from his earlier period "Diabolical Dr. Z"! I can tell you as a long time collector of rare movies it is a bloody miracle some of these titles have seen the light of day in such nice looking and uncut versions! They should get an award for resurrecting banned titles like "Don't Deliver Us From Evil" (a movie who's DVD release still amazes me) and "Silip", an exploitation movie from the Philippines I had never heard of that left me slack-jawed (and one which they will surely burn in hell for!). Mondo Macabro are not a huge company and their labor-of-love elements show through. And sadly, it seems to me, that it's smaller labels like MM that have the most struggle in the massive DVD retail world. So support these guys so they can keep coming out with great titles like these for as long as possible!
Check out their blog and stop over to their official website for more amazing clips!
*Lollywood: Like Bollywood on speed with more fighting and sleaze.
Friday, December 5, 2008
I can tell you that quite possibly there would not be a Trash Palace were it not for him. See for me, as a kid, reading "Famous Monsters" magazine really got me worked-up to want to try to see these films! Those articles and pictures stirred my imagination. "How cool must these monster flicks be!". And the subsequent monster record albums Forry produced, "Music for Robots" and, in particular, "Famous Monsters Speak", also blew my mind! So here's to you Mr. Ackermonster! We all know you're out there somewhere hanging with Karloff, Lugosi and the Chaneys in that great movie theater up in sky...
Forrest J Ackerman's Wide Webbed World: http://www.ackermonster.net/
Forrest Ackerman obit at Yahoo News: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081205/ap_en_ot/obit_ackerman
Forrst Ackerman obit at L.A. Times: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/herocomplex/2008/12/forrest-j-acker.html
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Friday, October 31, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
I'm guessing that some of you reading this picked that one up too, especially if you are around 40 to 45 years old now. This great little 80 page book had 3 sections: A brief history of movie monsters with black & white photos, 10 very cool monster makeup ideas, and a script to put on your own live monster show! The makeup ideas were great for young people; very innovative and effective without being too complex. So for Halloween in 1976 I chose the Wolfman makeup. I was 11 years old. My 6th Grade teacher, Mr. Teitelbaum, was quite indulgent and allowed me to use the projector room / storage closet as a private dressing room. I remember it took me about an hour to get everything completed. In fact it took me so much longer to get ready than the other kids that I missed most of the Halloween party, but finished just in time to join in the Halloween parade outside. The costume was pretty thorough and included a separate section on how to make Wolfman hands using a cut up wig and rubber dishwasher gloves! The facial makeup itself involved surgical adhesive which took me about 2 weeks to remove from my face! But, hey, it was well worth it! The hair I used to glue to my face was from an old wig my Bubby (Google it) gave me which she no longer used.
All in all a pretty complex looking work if I did think so myself! The other kids were all pretty exited by it too, I seem to remember. The again it might've just been all that sugar we were eating. Who knows! But there was no question that this was the best Halloween costume I had ever made. I enjoyed it so much, in fact, that 4 years later I did it again! By 9th grade, however, I was getting too old for Trick-or-Treating so I dressed up as a Wolfman and hid in the bushes at our house to scare the visiting kids! This way there were many leftovers and thus I could still score a lot of candy!
Below is a very short silent Super 8mm film clip of me taken in 1979 the second time I did the Wolfman makeup. I was 14 years old, just going on 15. It runs about 20 seconds. Look closely and you'll see my plastic fangs start to slip out!
Years later it was no surprise when I discovered that the author of "Movie Monsters", Alan Ormsby, was the man responsible for some very cool horror movies and creature makeups! In 1972 Ormsby had written, acted and done the great crusty zombie makeups for the "Night of the Living Dead" inspired film "Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things"! And in 1974 Ormsby wrote, directed and did the grisly makeup for the bloody Ed Gein bio-horror pic "Deranged"! Funny, somehow Scholastic books missed mentioning these bits of info in the book! I wonder why? In 1974 Ormbsy would also write and do the makeup for "Dead of Night" (aka "Deathdream"), an effective low-budget horror tale inspired by W.W. Jacobs' "The Monkey's Paw" story. Ormsby would go on to work on more mainstream Hollywood films, including writing the scripts for the hits "My Bodyguard" (1980) and the "Cat People" 1982 remake starring Nastassja Kinski and Malcolm McDowell. After "Deranged" Ormsby would not direct again until 1990's "Popcorn", a fun slasher film set in a theater running old b-movies with a nod to the William Castle gimmicks of the past. As much as I appreciate his movie work though, I'll always worship this guy for the "Movie Monsters" book. It had quite an impact on me and, I'm guessing, some of you too! For such a little book, "Movie Monsters" sure had a LOT of bite!
Alan Ormsby on The Internet Movie Database: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0650276/
YOU DIDN'T AXE FOR IT! #3
Okay all you boils and ghouls out there in Trashland! As a special Halloween bone-us I am giving away an original copy of the "Movie Monsters" book that I found recently in the Trash Palace crypt! Yes, you can win this monstrous masterpiece! Howl you say? Here are the rules: Below is an assortment of 10 werewolf faces. They are all pieces of the original advertising art from different werewolf movie posters. All you have to do is be the first person to correctly identify which movie each face is from! Dog-gone-it, I didn't say it was gonna be easy! Submit your answers as a comment and whomever is the first to correctly identify all of them wins! (If you have trouble submitting the comment you can also email your entry directly to me at firstname.lastname@example.org .) Remember to click on the picture below to enlarge it. And if no one wolfs down the prize after a few days, I'll start leaving some clues! Good luck to everybody!
EDIT (October 29th, 2008): Hold the wolfbane! We have a winner!! (see the comments)
Friday, October 24, 2008
WMUC FM back then consisted of 2 turntables, 2 mics, a cassette deck (which sometimes worked) and a cart tape machine (not used for this particular show). The shows were generally laid back and fun. With such a low signal range, this being pre-cable / internet broadcasting, you could break a lot of FCC rules and no one noticed. (More on that some other time.) But this particular Halloween program was put together meticulously (I had a lot of free time back then apparently) and mixed live and what you hear, for better or hearse, is the way it went out over the air powered by it's 10 glorious watts of power! Yee-hah! Not even enough power to give Teenage Frankenstein an erection! Remember: This was in the days before home computer audio mixing programs designed for podcasts and things were around, and also before the availability of horror rock compilation CDs and such. A lot of this monster music wasn't that easy to come by then! And while there are some standards like "The Monster Mash" and all, there is also quite a wide-range of more unexpected / obscure ghoulish goodies. There were monster theme segments (zombies, vampires, blobs...) with various stories and sound effects, and monster music ranging from more contemporary horror / Halloween themed garage / punk rock tunes (The Cramps, Siouxsie and the Banshees, The Dead Kennedys) to older monster novelty records, movie score and t.v. themes and creepy old radio show excerpts... I think that, all things considered, the show came off pretty good! I do remember that it was hard getting myself worked up to do all those goofy monster voices at 9am, also I had a bad cold at the time and was pretty spaced out on Dayquil or something. Okay,... I was also a total spaz! (I can hear some of you saying "What do you mean was?") And, yes, it's a bit embarrassing for me personally to listen to at times. Ah, but whadcanIsay... Sacrificing a bit of my humility for your listening pleasure is worth it! So here it is: 2 hours and 42 minutes of of horrible, er, horrorfying Halloween treats suitable for all ages! My Halloween gift to you! (Hell, it's cheaper then chocolate bars and easier to fix up then stuffing razors into apples!) Feel free to listen, laugh, scream, download, and burn to CD if you want! I don't even care if you stick it up your pumpkin! Just enjoy! And have a Happy Halloween! And now, without further achoo, I give to you "The Get up And Go-Go Pre-Halloween Special"!
You can listen to the entire show here:
(If you prefer to play the show from your Media Player click here.)
Or you can download the program by right clicking here and saving the file to your hard drive.
Monday, October 20, 2008
In the early days of home video rentals the Wizard Video label released a trailer collection called "The Best of Sex and Violence" (1985). And it was on this VHS tape that I first discovered Rudy Ray Moore. Amongst the seventies exploitation trailers compiled on there were several Blaxploitation titles including the 3 complete trailers for "Dolemite", "The Human Tornado" and "The Disco Godfather". I remember laughing my ass off at such classic lines as "Bitch! Are you for real!?" and "If you crave satisfaction, this is the place to find that action! Coming to this theater as it's next attraction!". Moore's delivery was really over-the-top and reminded me of a lot of guys that I had gone to school with back in the seventies; kids that were always going around trying to out-badass each other! It wasn't until later that I realized part of his style was an intentional sort-of self-parody. Rudy was having a laugh with his movies and that's part of what makes them great! I remember turning my friends on to the Moore movies and it's funny now to think of a bunch of young white kids in the suburbs running around quoting Dolemite (which we did for years).
Eventually I was able to track down copies of his movies and later I was lucky to find some of his records. A lot of the classic Black "party records" (XXX humor) were only ever sold to adults in urban liquor stores and inner-city record shops so, needless to say, I had never seen any of them before! What always cracked me up was what I call the Rudy Ray Logic of his humor. As Dolemite: "And tell him I want him out of here in 24 hours. And 23 of them are already gone!" A lot of his jokes were much more x-rated then Richard Pryor or anyone else I had heard, but there was this intentional goofiness to them that made it all in fun. Like on his LP called "The Second Rudy Ray Moore Album" (pictured below), a live recording (or, more likely, pseudo-live), Moore is admiring a female member of his audience: "Woman, I sure would like to get in your pants!" "Why?" "'cause I done shit in mine!". Rudy was not just another guttermouth comic but a real genius!
As you can hear things were a bit loose, but for me personally it was a dream come true! Rudy hadn't really planned on doing any particular jokes that night, he just pulled them out onstage. He told me afterwords that he noticed a few younger children in the crowd and tried to tone it down. Even I was shocked!: Yes, Rudy Ray Moore is Dolemite! He put his finger in the ground and turned the whole world around! To this day I am in awe of the man and I can't help but think that as time goes on his popularity will continue to grow and grow. And in closing let me say this: Rudy Ray Moore, he may be gone... but THE LEGEND OF MUTHAFUCKIN' DOLEMITE LIVES ON!
MY FAVE RUDY RAY LINE: "I got a dong as big as King Kong!"
MY FAVE RUDY RAY MOVIE: A tie between "The Human Tornado" and "Petey Wheatstraw, the Devil's Son-In-Law"
MY FAVE RUDY RAY LP: "Eat Out Moore Often" (a classic!)
MY FAVE RUDY RAY SONGS: "Easy, Easy Baby" and "Theme from The Human Tornado" - amazing!
Thanx to Bill Baker for shooting the Rudy / Ubangis video!
The Dolemite.com website is at http://www.dolemite.com/
Rudy Ray Moore website at Shocking Videos http://www.rudyraymoore.com/
Rudy Ray Moore filmography on the Internet Movie Database is at http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0601834/
Chuck Jeffrey's Combatitude is at http://www.combattitude.com/
Friday, September 12, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Who... or what... is this? Is it King Kong's bigmouth cousin from New Jersey? A Christmas toy for bad children? A possessed urinal? What, I ask you, what!!?? I will be really surprised if anyone comes close with this one! The answer posted soon!
EDIT (Friday, Sept. 19th): The answer has been posted in the comments!
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Below you can compare the old and new Banana Splits. They look pretty much the same to me although Beagle appears to have lost a few pounds. Also Snorky seems to have much shorter hair now and looks less freaked-out then he did in the '60s. But, in his defense, it was the hippy era after all. Rumor has it that due to many bad trips he had gone the way of Syd Barrett but, after several years struggling in rehab, he has reportedly cleaned up his act. Good on ya Snorky! Tra-la-la, la-la-la-la...
For more info and a LOT of flashing colors, loud sound effects, moving thingies, groovy songs, nutty games and many video clips check out the official website at http://www.bananasplits.com/ .
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
As I picked up the top magazine and gazed upon it's gruesomeness, I fell into a stunned silence, a sort of cross between shock and orgasm (at least as far as an 8 year old is concerned). What the hell were these things? I lifted the top magazine off of the pile and then noticed that the magazine underneath was a different issue, indeed an entirely different title altogether, but with that same style of grizzly cover art! As I picked up the second magazine and noticed yet a third similar styled one underneath, I suddenly realized that the entire stack of 50 or 60 mags were all different issues! What a discovery! A huge heaping pile of beasts, blood and babes! "M-m-m-mom..." I muttered. My Mother approached. "PLEASE!! OH, PLEASE!! Can I PLEASE have one? PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!" I cried out in my best James Brown impersonation. "For the love of GOD, woman! PLEEEEEEEEEEEEEASE!!!" My mother picked up one of the magazines and looked at it. And in a that moment, a split-second combination of love and dysfunction, a decision was made that would indeed change my life, point me towards the path of sleaze and perversion, and cause Dr. Frederick Wertham 1 more roll in his Godforsaken grave (look it up), she muttered the words which I so longed to hear: "Okay, Brian, you can pick out one." Oh, YEEEEES!! Oh, THANK YOU!!" I cried, "THAAAAAANK YOOOOOU!!". I spent the next 10 minutes going through the entire stack several times, carefully studying each cover like they were some kinds of unearthed ancient artifacts from a lost tribe, rare treasures dug up from the tomb of Tut, some kinds of face-stained shrouds of some exploited Deity... Yes, I had discovered that, indeed, there WAS a God and I had the proof in my own little mits, baby! I took my time since I could, after all, only choose one. And I had to make sure it was THE one! And after studying each cover very, very closely, I decided on...
Yes, that was the fateful day I had discovered the "Picto-Fiction" world of the mysterious "Eerie Publications", some of the shittiest horror comics ever drawn with some of the goriest and most outrageous covers ever painted! Over the following years I'd occasionally but rarely stumble on a few issues here and there, and each time it was like uncovering a wonderful golden turd! With titles like "Weird Vampire Tales", "Tales of Voodoo", "Terror Tales", "Tales from the Tomb", "Witches Tales",... you get the idea. It wasn't until a road trip to New York City circa 1984 that lead me to a small comic book store in the Village where I was able to score about 100 of these things for only around $1 to $2 each! A motherload of monsters!! How lucky I felt to find so many at one time and in one place too! But how could this possibly happen? Why weren't these already snapped up? You see, truth is, back then no one really cared about trash like this. These weren't considered "collectible" comics. These were disposable horrors, the McDonald's of comic books, meant to be consumed quickly and then shat into the toilet of terror turds, flushed away to the sea of unwanted comics along with Archie, Big Boy and all the other non-collectibles. Indeed these were third-rate imitations of classier (I say "classier", not necessarily "classy" mind you) comic mags like Warren Publications "Creepy", "Eerie" and "Vampirella" and Skywald's "Nightmare", "Psycho" and "Scream". All decent rags in their own right. And yet, there was something about these others, these monster mavericks... they were trashier imitations of the trash they tried to copy... like they were saying "Fuck it! We know we're garbage, so let's just crank the shit up!". Having so many at this point I then discovered that the mags were pretty much interchangeable, that the stories were continuously reprinted from issue to issue regardless of the title. In fact some of these stories were already reprinted from 1950s pre-code comic books. Occasionally some of the art would even be touched-up to appear gorier then how it was originally published earlier! And the violence could be outrageous on a surreal level. Many times in these stories, for example, someone would get a knife in the neck or an axe in the back and that would cause their eyeball would fly out! Bet you didn't know that could happen, did you doc? The art itself was usually pretty poor, but a few of them, especially around the late '60s / early '70s, did have their own cool style, but those were few and far between. One memorable tale, "Blood Bath" (seen below), told of the horrors of LSD.
To this day I have yet to try the shit! I mean,... can you blame me? And the story titles... "The Slime Creatures", "A Head Full Of Snakes", "The Skin Crawlers", "The Blood Dripping Head"... I mean, did they just have a board on the wall with 30 or 40 horrific words written on them and throw darts at it? I also noticed that the cover art was very often re-used and re-re-used, sometimes cut-up where just parts of them were re-used, sometimes older parts were combined with parts of other older covers, sometimes they'd be the same monsters but re-drawn entirely! This was nutso! In later issues the cover art seemed to be often re-printed on the inside cover in black and white.
There was no rhyme or reason to it. Even the numbering of the issues made no sense. And there seemed to be this endless array of different covers too! To this day I am still discovering new ones I hadn't seen before! Years later I xeroxed one of my favorite covers (seen below) to make a flyer for my band Date Bait for our first ever gig, Halloween weekend (natch), 1988.
I mean, check it out: You have a mad scientist transplanting a brain into a Frankenstein monster while a vampire and a werewolf grapple with a stacked redhead! What a glorious monster mess! The closest things to rival these excessive cover overloads of famous creatures were a few films by directors Al Adamson, Jess Franco and Paul Naschy. Someone needs to publish a nice full-color book showcasing every cover! Are you listening Taschen? Hey, I can dream, can't I?
In conclusion all I can say is... Thanks Mom!
For more information check out the excellent article and cover gallery on Eerie Publications publisher Myron Fass at the incredible "Bad Mags" website (for the forthcoming book of the same name by Tom Brinkmann). There is also a nice Eerie Publications cover gallery at the Empire of the Claw website. Check 'em out!
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Okay kids! It's contest time! Each week (or so) I'll post a mystery song, photo, smell, etc. and it's up to you to guess what it be! Yes, YOU DIDN'T AXE FOR IT... but here it comes none the less! AND NOW, listen to this weird li'l ditty if you dare! :
PLAY THE MYSTERY SONG NOW!
What could it be? An unreleased recording of The Ventures on acid? Go-go music from Uranus? Cubby Broccoli's funeral march? The answer may astound you! It may amaze you! Why, it may even cause you to unexpectedly unload your waste at an inappropriate time thus soiling your garments! And yes, the first person who can name this tune correctly will win... (pause for dramatic effect)... ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! Except the instant gratification that you were the first one to get it right! The answer will be posted here soon! WOW!!
EDIT (July 19th, 2008) - Okay, seems no one's gonna get this as is. So I'll start giving clues. Clue #1: It's the theme to a movie from 1969.
EDIT (July 23rd, 2008) - Clue #2: It has an Asian cast.
EDIT (August 13th, 2008) - Clue #3: Okay, here's the last hint; The theme to this movie appears in the English dubbed US release during the opening credits and is NOT heard at all in it's original Japanese release. Hmmm... what could it be?
EDIT (August 19th, 2008) - Yes, we finally have a wiener! See the comments for the amazing answer!
Thursday, July 3, 2008
Actually, this should be called "John Phillip Law Upstages The Ubangis"! After the recent and unexpected passing of John Phillip Law, I had mentioned this video in a prior post ("Diabolik Says Goodbye") of Mr. Law goofing around during a Ubangis soundcheck. I then had many requests (well, at least one bloke asked for it!) to post the clip and, so, here it is! This was recorded live late one intoxicated Saturday night over Halloween weekend in 1998 at the Chiller Theatre horror convention in New Jersey. Things were very hectic and I was running around totally focused on getting the band gear setup and completely oblivious to the facts that 1. there was a man sitting right in front of me at the edge of the stage doing wacky things and 2. said man was John Phillip Law! And I especially should have noticed because I had just gotten his autograph that weekend! In fact I had no idea any of this was going on until I saw a videotape of the gig a week later. Not having seen the tape for many years until today it was a bit different then I had remembered when describing it in the previous JPL post. The giant plastic bones you see him messing with incidentally were prop drumticks that I played with at the start of the gig. Later on in the clip Law can be seen watching our act as we perform the instrumental number "Microphonic Nightmare". The band members at the time were myself, Saucy Randy Manos, Kevin "Sexual Chocolate" Hall (who played a handful of gigs on bass with us around that time), and Jill Grable Barnett who had left the band 5 years prior to start a family but returned for this special gig. Sadly, Jill too has also passed on. Back then, during those surreal and wonderful moments, I couldn't ever imagine those people ever leaving this place. I feel very lucky this was all caught on tape at least so I can look back on what seems now like some far-out dream. The cameras that night were operated by Stephen Blickenstaff, Eric Pugliese and Adam Strausner.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
Saturday, May 31, 2008
You can pretty much get an idea of this thing from page one; groovy sixties-style art, mod paste-ups of old classic-style artwork ala Terry Gilliam with funny captions, hip curvy lettering and, yes, those are loose-leaf paper holes punched so the magazine can be clipped inside one's school notebook and snuck into school(which they encouraged naturally!). But what is really bizarre about this magazine is that in the middle of all the Hippy jokes is this 14 page long "serious" article called "John Lennon Is Scared"! Obviously inspired by Charles Manson and the whole "Paul Is Dead" Beatles schtick, the article tends to jump all over the place and is a bit of a mess. Who knows how much of this shit is fact based if indeed any of it is! And yet there are still are a few unsettling things about this piece particularly in light of future events. Read on if you dare!