i miss the lockdowns 😟

I don’t know if we’re out of the woods on COVID. But damnit, the lockdowns low key slapped. The problem with going out into public nowadays is that everyone’s nice.

What’s up with that?

I miss being threatened with violence. Where are all the middle aged white guys itching to pull out their .22 because I wear a mask that says “I ❤️ eating ass and 9/11 was an inside job”?

Home Depot just isn’t the same anymore.

That’s why I shop at Lowe’s, with everyday great prices and constant harassment.

Lowe’s: Never Stop Improving.

another round of terrible movies

It was slim pickins this week.

I probably started watching a little over a half dozen of B-movies in my quest to see every horror film on Tubi. And I probably only finished two of them.

These are those two.

The Majorettes (1986)

I love a movie that can’t decide what it wants to be. So instead of choosing, it decides to be every option.

The Majorettes calls itself a “slasher” film. Sure, okay. At times, I think, it flirts with being a supernatural comedy. Then it inexplicably becomes a remake of Rambo.

Your guess is as good as mine.

My favorite part is one villain hangs another villain using a rope that runs through a cheapass hook that’s barely screwed into the ceiling.

While the film was godawful, I am intrigued enough to check out the book that this was based on (which was adapted for the screen by its author). If it’s as random as the movie, it seems like my kind of book.

Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers (1988)

I might have to watch this one again.

It has everything that I love: private detectives, Linnea Quigley, and a short running time (boobs too, if you’re into that sort of thing).

The film is absolute trash. And deliberately so. That’s Hollywood, folks.

Honestly, the image above says everything you need to know. It ain’t Citizen Kane, but it will easily kill an hour and 15 minutes.

A gene Roddenberry production of a Robert wise film

Because I’m a chump, I finally broke down and paid for Paramount+.

Available on the service is the newly remastered version of Star Trek: The Motion Picture starring William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelly, and renowned sex pervert Stephen Collins.

When Robert Wise’s Director’s Cut came out years ago, it greatly improved what was an otherwise interesting but clunky and boring movie. Unfortunately, this version of the film wasn’t updated for high def until recently.

It looks incredible. Douglas Trumbull’s special effects have been vastly improved. Jupiter, V’ger, the Enterprise…it all pops in ways that it didn’t before. That element alone makes the film much more watchable.

However, while some aspects of the film have been improved, it only only highlights its weaker aspects. While the special effects, music, and (most of its) production design are incredible, that only makes the direction, script, editing, and acting look that much more terrible.

It doesn’t matter how hard they try, they can’t disguise the fact that this movie was hastily thrown together. At the time, I think, it was one of the most expensive movies ever made. And to be honest, it doesn’t look it.

Oddly enough, I think fault lies on the shoulders of legendary director Robert Wise and his DP. Much of the film takes place on the bridge of the Enterprise. And the set looks godawful. It’s too claustrophobic, too cheap, too bland. And the editing doesn’t do much to improve it as actors awkwardly wander on and off the set without much of a purpose.

It’s not the best design for the Enterprise bridge. But Nicholas Meyer and Leonard Nimoy…both novice directors at that time…make that same set look like a million dollars in subsequent Trek films. Meyer especially puts the claustrophobic aspect to good use in Star Trek II.

Fortunately, I think most of this could be easily fixed. And that requires jettisoning most of the journey through the V’ger cloud. While visually it’s interesting, it adds absolutely nothing. The immensity of V’ger itself is also established in the next sequence (which also needs to be cleaned up a bit editing wise) therefore making the cloud voyage redundant.

It’s a small change, but it would go a long way in improving the pacing. I’m sure there’s a fan edit floating around the internet somewhere that does this.

The uniforms also look underwhelming. I don’t hate them. Some internet genius explained that these surgeon-like uniforms actually highlight the delicacy of the matter: the characters have to be precise in their decision making. In that light, the uniforms add a nice touch. Nevertheless, the film could have used an updated version of William Theiss’ iconic designs.

Unfortunately nothing will fix the caricature performances and phoned-in script. But that’s okay. This high-def version of the Director’s Cut…which will presumably be the final cut…elevates what was one of the worst Trek films into a pretty solid sci-fi movie.

And that’s good enough 👍

the art of trolling

Oh to be young again.

I say that internet trolling has gotten BETTER since my day of IMDb message boards and AOL chat rooms. It was easier then. People were far more gullible.

Kids today are craftier, resourceful.

They rarely tip their hand.

A good example is the “fuck.atheism” accounts on Instagram. Of course, I’m assuming that they are trolls (allegedly ran by some jailbird named “Brandon Walsh”). For the sake of my sanity, I have to believe that they are.

Take a look:

This is “fuck.atheism.5”. This is number 5 of 6 accounts with this name and avatar.

Obviously that’s a troll,” you might say.

I wouldn’t be so sure:

“So the guy’s committed to the bit. Kudos to him,” you say.

Yeah, I suppose. But…Jesus, who the fuck is this for?

Look, in my day, I probably could have pulled something close to this out of my ass. But if this is a bit, where’s the parody? Is it the blatant science denialism? I would have never of wasted that much time for a joke!

See what I mean?

This is either skill or overzealousness. And it pisses me off that I can’t tell which it is.

“Who cares?”

Well for posterity’s sake, I think things like this should be recorded and analyzed. We are either looking at modern art or batshit insanity. Or maybe it’s both.

Someone has to explain to future generations what we were doing with the internet. And that’s what this website’s all about.

I’m a historian. Not a shitposter.

mommy don’t play no shit!

It doesn’t take much to piss me off….

…like saying there’s no swearing in a movie where there is absolutely swearing. In Bloodbath at the House of Death (the subject of this review) the first uttered word is ‘shit!”.

Did this reviewer miss all of that? Or are they of those religious folks that are perfectly fine with nudity and graphic violence, but draw the line at bad language?

It’s interesting when people do that.

I mean, does the Bible even condemn “bad words”? And even if it did, you realize that Jesus didn’t speak English, right?

So we can safely say that God don’t know what the fuck you’re saying,

long live kenny Everett

I have no idea what’s going on in the video above because I don’t speak British, but goddamn is it hilarious.

I came across Kenny Everette while watching Bloodbath at the House of Death. His first scene is just him in a car explaining the plot in an absurdly British way. I probably found it funnier than what was intended because I forgot that they drive on the other side of the road. But it occurred to me: this might be the greatest comedic performance of all time.

I know, I know… “but James, don’t you notoriously hate the British?” you might be wondering.

And that’s not true at all (it’s probably the Swedes you’re thinking of). Sure I said, “Winston Churchill would have gone down as another drunken Brit if the Americans and FDR didn’t bail him out.” But that doesn’t mean I hate ALL British people. Hell, I love Marmite!

Now clearly not all of Everette’s jokes land. But even when a joke appears to be DOA, he takes it in a complete opposite direction. Pure genius.

So it’s unfortunate that he isn’t more famous in the States. It’s sad, actually. So I did more research.

Kenny Everette died of AIDS in 95.

RIP 😔

more bad movies

Someone should really pay me to go through the trash can that is Tubi’s film archive, but alas, I’m in it for the love of the game.

Now it’s hard to maintain quality throughout a film. Most movies start off great, then peter out. Others you have stick with until the very end.

This is especially true for B movies. In fact, I’m starting to think that it’s harder to make a good B movie than it is to make a decent GREAT film.

Here’s a couple of examples:

Out of the Dark (1988)

Some heavy hitters were involved in this. Karen Black acts her ass off, and there’s even an appearance from the legendary Divine.

Now you’d think that it would be impossible to screw up a movie about a psycho clown and phone sex workers. In fact, it has a strong opening: some dude playing with his nipples…with a knife…while having phone sex.

Production quality is not that bad here. Despite a few good laughs, not much gets done with this banger of a concept.

The Prowler (1981)

This had the exact opposite problem as Out of the Dark. The concept is kinda meh, but boy does it end on a high note (courtesy of makeup artist Tom Savini)!

What I love about these kinds of movies is determining what was intentional from the filmmakers. There was one scene that was more intentionally funny than it had any business being. And the ending, despite being bizarre, was quite effective.

I don’t know. Maybe I need to stop assuming that these filmmakers are completely inept.

Blades (1989)

People ask me all the time: “why do you watch this shit?”

Because I’m looking for a diamond in the rough. This time the diamond is Blades, a parody of Jaws.

It’s about a lawnmower that hunts and kills people on a golf course. Only the golf pros and a former groundskeeper stand in its way.

I’m sure people thought that this film was completely fucking stupid in 1989. But some things get better with age.

Now I’m not saying that this one is up there with such classics as Blood Diner or Toxic Avenger. But if you’re high enough, it COULD be.

It’s funnier than Caddyshack. That’s a hill I will die on.

The 00s sucked peen

Ah 9/11….

Now THOSE were the days!

What a legend

I know “physically” I’m in my 30s, but in my heart I will always be 109 and counting down the days until death relieves me of this pitiful life.

But because my formative years took place during the 00s, I’m supposed to feel a sense of nostalgia for them.

Fuck that.

It was a TERRIBLE decade: the death of rock/metal, 9/11, the Great Recession, Hurricane Katrina, the first run of the New England Patriots dynasty, Iraq, Afghanistan…and aesthetically it was a cheap knockoff of the 90s.

I’m sorry, but it sucked. And we all knew it.

Of course, occasionally I’ll listen to Three Doors Down and Shaggy then think “oh yeah, this was the shit,” while I reminisce about sitting on a dirty ass floor and playing the first Halo.

But the only thing WORTH remembering was MySpace. Remember how dope that shit was? You could customize your page, add a song, post half-nudes because that’s what people expected you to do. Why we abandoned that in favor of Facebook I will never understand.

I know that people I graduated with are starting to feel their age. They’re now working along side adults that don’t REMEMBER 9/11. Yeah that sucks, but you know what else sucks?

Three Doors Down and the 00s.

So be happy you escaped that shit.