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/