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Welcome to the Crypt!

Enter the Crypt as John "The Unimonster" Stevenson and his merry band of ghouls rants and raves about the current state of Horror, as well as reviews Movies, Books, DVD's and more, both old and new.

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From the Desk of the Unimonster...

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07 May, 2012

Shadows’ Falling


As a very young Unimonster, I had two passions that consumed me—Scary Movies and Star Trek.  Both had latched onto my soul with an attraction that has yet to fade, and which, hopefully, never will.

About the time I was in the first grade, I was fortunate enough to be able to feed both of my ‘addictions’ on a daily basis, as one of the local TV stations aired an after-school-hours double-feature of Dark Shadows at four, and Star Trek at five.

Dark Shadows was a ground-breaking daily series revolving around an orphaned young woman, Victoria Winters (played by newcomer Alexandra Moltke), who arrives in the small coastal town of Collinsport, Maine, seeking answers about her past, shrouded in mystery.  She soon enters the employ of Elizabeth Collins Stoddard (portrayed by veteran actress Joan Bennett), mistress of Collinwood Manor.  If this sounds like the set-up for a soap opera … well, it was.  The first season of the show was a fairly standard soap opera of the 1960s, albeit with a darker tone than most.  And it was not very well-received, either by critics or by audiences.

But beginning with episode #211, the show found both it’s inspiration and the star to embody it.  The episode introduced the character of Barnabas Collins, a mysterious relative visiting from England, played to perfection by a Canadian-born stage actor named Jonathan Frid.  In reality, Barnabas was an ancestor of the present Collins family—one who supposedly died two hundred years before, but who was, in actuality, a vampire.  For the next 1,014 episodes, Collinwood would be visited by ghosts, witches, werewolves, even time travelers.  It would be unique among it’s contemporaries in it’s focus on supernatural plotlines, a fact that would establish it as a niche hit, and would endear it to an audience not known for watching the soaps—young people, both male and female.  Frid’s performance as the iconic vampire Barnabas played a huge part in that success, and in the show’s status as a cult classic.  On Saturday, 14 April of this year[i], this gentle man who had made a career out of one unforgettable character, passed away at a hospital in his hometown of Hamilton, Ontario, from complications of a fall.  He was 87.

Fans of modern series such as True Blood, The Vampire Diaries, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, even the TWILIGHT films, would recognize in Dark Shadows the well from which those later programs sprang.  Frid’s vampire, for all his classically gothic trappings, had far more in common with Robert Pattinson’s Edward than Bela Lugosi’s Dracula.  Frid himself, in an interview published in the November, 1969 Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine [#59], spoke of his vision for the character.  “… I portray him as a lonely, tormented man who bites girls in the neck, but only when my uncontrollable need for blood drives me to it.  And I always feel remorseful about it later.  He has a nasty problem.  He craves blood.  Afterwards, like an alcoholic or an addict, he’s ashamed but simply can’t control himself.”  Driven by his longing for his lost love Josette, Barnabas spent the next four years of the series run, as well as two feature films, searching for a way to end the loneliness of his existence, whether by transforming someone into a replacement for Josette, or by finding a way back to her through a time-portal in the mansion, or by turning to a doctor who promised a cure for his vampirism.  Happiness, or at least an end to his lonely life-after-death, always eluded him, however.

My connection to Collinwood came at an early age.  A daily dose of vampires, ghosts, and ghouls was tailor-made to fuel my growing love of Horror, especially when I might see only one horror film a week.  Barnabas Collins was far more familiar to me at that age than were the more established movie vampires played by Lugosi or Lee.  The first issue of Famous Monsters that I ever bought was that aforementioned #59, with Basil Gogos’ fantastic portrait of Barnabas on the cover.  For a five-year-old in 1969, 50¢ was a fortune … at least in my neighborhood it was.  It was a measure of my love for the show that I would lay down that much (or convince my mother or father to do so … I can’t quite remember how the magazine was acquired) for one item.

Dark Shadows left the airwaves in 1971, when I was seven.  By that age I was a confirmed Horror addict, and, through the pages of Forry Ackerman’s Famous Monsters, had gained a greater knowledge of other film vampires.  The adventures of Barnabas and the Collins clan were quickly left behind, replaced in my affections by Hammer horrors, 1950s Sci-Fi, and the classic Universal monsters.  By the time I reached adulthood, Dark Shadows had faded into the deep recesses of my childhood.

Some time back, I had the opportunity to watch several episodes of that beloved old show, and, at least to the Unimonster’s tired old eyes, time had not been kind to Collinwood.  The fact that the program was, after all, a soap opera—something that had escaped my notice as a child—was all too apparent to me in retrospect.  The plots were utterly, unbelievably contrived and convoluted; the dialogue was dated; the acting, for the greater part, only mediocre.  Only two things kept it from being a total disappointment: the fantastic gothic atmosphere of Collinwood, and the consummate television vampire, Mr. Frid.

Recently, Tim Burton’s upcoming big-screen ‘reimagining’ of the Dark Shadows series has captured much of fandom’s attention, and opinions regarding Johnny Depp’s comedic interpretation of Barnabas are a hot topic among fans of the original series.  Frankly, the less said regarding Burton and Depp’s efforts in this direction the better.  However, it is fitting that Jonathan Frid’s final screen appearance was a cameo in this movie.  It’s just unfortunate that he didn’t live to see his creation once more preying on vulnerable necks.


[i] Some sources say Friday, 13 April.  According to his obituary in the New York Times [http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/20/arts/television/jonathan-frid-ghoulish-dark-shadows-star-dies-at-87.html?_r=1], the date is actually the 14th.




DVD Review: THE NAVY vs. THE NIGHT MONSTERS


Title:  THE NAVY vs. THE NIGHT MONSTERS

Year of Release—Film:  1966

Year of Release—DVD:  2010

DVD Label:  Cheezy Flicks



For every Horror fan, there is that one movie that started it all; the first movie that scared them, gave them nightmares.   For most, that would be an unpleasant memory, but for Horror-philes, that was merely the planting of a seed, a seed that would grow into a life-long love affair with Scary Movies.

For the child that would one day grow into the Unimonster, that seed would be planted when I was barely three years old, sitting between my older sisters at a Drive-In in Jacksonville, Florida.  The movie was Michael A. Hoey’s THE NAVY vs. THE NIGHT MONSTERS, the first movie that ever gave me nightmares.  In the past I’ve written of my quest to track down this movie, barely remembered from my (ever-more) distant youth [Childhood Terrors Recaptured, 20 October 2007].  I had one clear image in my mind to aid me in that search—a sailor, arm torn off by a tree-like monster, staggering, screaming, through the jungle.  An image that was sharp in my mind forty years later.

As I related in that article, I eventually tracked down a copy of this movie … an average-looking transfer to DVD-R from the 1997 VHS release.  It was certainly watchable, and I was overjoyed to add it to the collection, but I also hoped that at some point that it would get the DVD release that it deserved.  One can easily imagine my joy when low-cost distributor Cheezy Flicks announced that they would be releasing it on DVD in 2010.

Starring Mamie Van Doren, the former girlfriend of billionaire recluse (and one-time head of RKO Studios) Howard Hughes, along with Anthony Eisley, Bill Gray (who, as ‘Billy’ Gray, was familiar to 1960s audiences as Bud, the son on Father Knows Best), and former musical star Bobby Van.  The story, based on Murray Leinster’s novel The Monster from Earth’s End, concerns a cargo flight from Antarctica, carrying scientists and their biological specimens.  The transport crash-lands under mysterious circumstances at a remote refueling outpost of the US Navy.  Upon searching the aircraft, the sailors are shocked to find only one survivor—and no bodies.  The rest of the crew, as well as the passengers, have simply disappeared.  The only evidence of unusual activity is traces of a highly corrosive substance found in the cargo compartment.

For lack of a better explanation, Lt. Charles Brown (Eisley), temporarily in command of the station, determines that the lone survivor most likely murdered the rest, and disposed of their bodies over the ocean.  As the suspect is in a catatonic state, there’s no one to refute the hypothesis, and he’s placed under guard in the infirmary.  The station’s chief scientist, Dr. Beecham (Walter Sande), plants the botanical samples found in the wreckage to preserve them until transport can be arranged.  Soon however, station personnel begin disappearing.  Can it be the plane’s co-pilot, continuing his murderous spree?

Complicating Lt. Brown’s problems are his girlfriend Nora (Van Doren) and Bob Spaulding, the station’s civilian weather forecaster (played by Edward Faulkner).  Spaulding, whose contract is up, and is due to leave the island, is in love with Nora, creating a conflict with the naval officer.  For her part, Nora, though she has feelings for Spaulding, is holding out hope for Brown.
It soon becomes clear to the officers and men of Gull Island that something unexplained is happening, something which goes beyond what one man, even a lunatic, would be capable of performing.  Can the Navy find the solution to the question in time, or will the station be wiped out by an unknown horror?
Though Michael Hoey is listed as the film’s writer-director, he reportedly had deep misgivings over producer Jack Broder’s vision for the movie.  The final straw came when the ‘night crawlers’ were delivered to the production.  The creation of Jon Hall (the director and star of THE BEACH GIRLS AND THE MONSTER), Hoey thought the creatures laughably ridiculous, and refused to shoot the scenes with them.  Broder simply brought in Hall to shoot the scenes with his creatures, and Arthur C. Pierce, who had an uncredited assist on the screenplay, to shoot some additional material.  Frankly, I’d have to agree with Hoey … as long as the monsters remained unseen the film was pretty effective at building and maintaining the suspense.  However, as with most movies of this period, once the creature was revealed it lost all ability to frighten audiences—at least, those whose members weren’t three years old.
As I said earlier, I was eager to see what a decent DVD release of this movie would look like, whether or not it would improve upon the rather poor quality of the transferred VHS tape.  That it does, though the bar it had to clear wasn’t an exceptionally high one, and it didn’t exactly soar over it.  The Cheezy Flicks offering is one cut above the dollar store discount bin, but for a movie like this, that’s not too bad.  I would have liked to see the print used cleaned up some, even if it was only digitally.  Still, it was hardly unwatchable.  The only bonus feature on the disc was an “Intermission Reel,” composed of concession stand ads from the 1950s, ‘60s, and ‘70s.  Enjoyable enough, but something specific to this movie would have been much better.

When I consider the recommendation of a movie, either to see or to avoid, all I (or anyone) can do is offer my opinion on whether or not I think the DVD in question is worth your hard-earned money.  Even a movie that I enjoy as much as I do this one might not make the cut, given that my tastes can be somewhat—peculiar.  I want to give THE NAVY vs. THE NIGHT MONSTERS my wholehearted recommendation … if only to validate those long-ago nightmares.  But I can’t.  If you grew up watching the Sci-Fi creature features through a car windshield, as did I, then I say give it a shot.  You just might enjoy it as much as I did.

But keep those expectations low.






Bobbie's Movies to Look For: CORMAN’S WORLD: EXPLOITS OF A HOLLYWOOD REBEL


Title:  CORMAN’S WORLD: EXPLOITS OF A HOLLYWOOD REBEL

Year of Release—Film:  2012




Our story begins in 1954.  A young script-reader for Fox Studios, tired of reading and rejecting bad script after bad script, quit.  Cobbling together $28,000 from friends and relatives, he produced (and appeared in) a science fiction movie titled MONSTER FROM THE OCEAN FLOOR.  Picked up for distribution by Lippert Pictures, it grossed $117,000.  By the end of the decade, that man directed or produced 30 more movies without losing a dime.  That man is Roger Corman.  His life and career is now examined in a new documentary from director Alex Stapleton, CORMAN’S WORLD: EXPLOITS OF A HOLLYWOOD REBEL.

CORMAN’S WORLD is a love letter.  A love letter signed by most of the directors and actors whose careers Corman jump-started throughout those early years, including Ron Howard, Jack Nicholson, Peter Bogdanovich, Peter Fonda, Martin Scorsese, Jonathan Demme, Robert De Niro and David Carradine, Dick Miller, William Shatner, Quentin Tarantino, among others.  From his humble beginnings to present, Roger, with almost 400 films under his producer-director belt, is fondly lauded by his friends, fellow industry workers and family members.  Now, in his 86th year of life, Roger shows no sign of tiring, still working very much hands-on as a producer.

Born in Detroit, Michigan, on April 5, 1926, Roger William Corman at first followed in his father’s footsteps, studying engineering at Stanford College but, tiring of his chosen profession, he began to develop a budding interest in filmmaking.  He took a job as a messenger at Fox Studios, then became a story analyst and, in 1953, wrote a script titled “The House in the Sea” which was eventually filmed and released as HIGHWAY DRAGNET (1954).  Taking his pay for selling the script, he borrowed some more cash and made MONSTER FROM THE OCEAN FLOOR (1954).  His next picture was THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS (1955).  For this picture, shot for American Releasing, (which would soon become American International Pictures, or AIP), Corman convinced James Nicholson and Sam Arkoff to give him a three-picture deal.  He would go on to become it’s major talent behind the camera and make AIP the most profitable independent studio in cinema history!  Over the next 15 years, Roger made 53 pictures, mostly for AIP, and proved himself the godfather of quick, cheaply made productions.

CORMAN’S WORLD: EXPLOITS OF A HOLLYWOOD REBEL is an entertaining time capsule of a Hollywood outsider who went from the short shooting schedules and cheap special effects of the 1950’s Drive-in creature features through the Cold War days and man’s first steps into outer space through the so-called “Poe years” to biker movies.  He even had a brief foray into soft-corn porn movies.  The documentary includes film clips of him happily accepting his long-overdue 2009 lifetime achievement Academy Award and then on to his role as executive producer of DINOSHARK (2010).  CORMAN’S WORLD director Stapleton’s structure is fairly by the numbers but provides plenty of archival footage of now-deceased actor David Carradine, director George Hickenlooper and producer Polly Platt.

However, some of the interviews are odd.  Scorsese sits in his Manhattan screening room; Jack Nicholson reminisces on a sofa; Bruce Dern chats while getting a haircut; John Sayles relaxes on a stoop and Demme is shot sitting in the back seat of a car staring out a window.  Long-time actor and friend, Dick Miller, tells of the two-day shoot that was LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS (1960) while his wife, seated near, is more interested in the antics of her little dog.  And why is Ron Howard filmed walking down a street headed for a cemetery?  Also, Stapleton does not give the dates on any of the interviews, leaving the viewer to estimate a time frame.  However, this is fitting.  A movie about Roger Corman should look like a Roger Corman film.  Fast, cheap and a little rough around the edges.  This clip-crammed documentary is filled with Hollywood luminaries, all who seem to genuinely love this quiet, cardigan-wearing gentleman who gave them a chance when no others would.

CORMAN’S WORLD is insightful, informative and entertaining.  I wish there had been more bonus material added and they should have cleaned up some of the movie clips.  (The clip from APACHE WOMAN (1955), for example, looked like it was yanked straight off of Youtube!)  However, it was a fitting introduction to this great man who still reigns as the King of the quickie movie!  If watching CORMAN’S WORLD leaves you yearning for more of Corman’s world, may I suggest How I Made a Hundred Movies in Hollywood and Never Lost a Dime by Roger Corman and Jim Jerome.  An excellent read that delves deeper into the life and times of Roger Corman, King of the B’s!

Trailer:
Both available from Amazon.com.

Bobbie






Bobbie's Essays: Murder Most Fowl


Ahhh ... Spring!  A time when flowers awaken from their chilly slumber, butterflies dance in the warm breezes, when one’s heart turns lightly to dreams of love and when the swallows return to Capistrano.  And here at Bobbie’s Moldy-Oldies, it’s time for the chickens to come home to roost!

Our first taste in this Kentucky-fried film festival is ZOMBEAK!  (2006).  Melissa (Melissa K. Gilbert), a terrible waitress in a run-down diner, is about to get it on with her boyfriend, Bobby Ray (Jason Von Stein), when she’s suddenly abducted by Satanists named Vascara (Tracy Yarkoni), Levianthan (Daryl Wilcher) and Gideon (Adam Morris).  She’s taken by hearse to the Satanist’s hideout in order to be impregnated with Satan’s child on the one night he’s allowed to walk the Earth.  Bobby Ray, who’s not the brightest bulb in the marquee, along with the diner’s owner Max (JimmyLee Smith), who doesn’t particularly like Melissa but would love to kick some Satan butt, and Bobby Ray’s sadistic cop brother Fasmagger (Nathan Standridge), are in hot pursuit.  Bursting into the sacrificial room, they interrupt the ritual, giving Satan no other choice than to inhabit a sacrificial chicken.  You heard that right.  A chicken.  What ensues next is 70 minutes of pure cinematic joy, with the evil chicken turning this one night into Hell on Earth for both our bumbling heroes and the confused Satanists!

With a zero-budget look and feel, ZOMBEAK delivers the goods.  How?  Because you can feel the real love the actors and it’s director, Sam Drog, had for the story and their parts in it.  Despite it’s bad special effects and cheap, low quality 80’s CGI and it’s video camera look, it’s surprisingly entertaining.  With the exception of Daryl Wilcher in the one scene where he has a coming-to-Jesus moment while facing his imminent demise at the hands of the Satan-obsessed chicken, the acting is below-par, with our heroine Melissa emoting in one of the most annoying fingernails-on-the-blackboard voices ever preserved on video tape.  However, the script is filled with brilliant one-liners like “Take that, you Kentucky-fried piece of shit,” and “It’s our God-damned Christian duty!”  The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) has no listing for ZOMBEAK’s budget or box office but I’m guessing it’s not much.  After all, what can you expect from a zero-budget movie about a Satan-possessed chicken who wants to turn everyone into zombies!  And one that, to my knowledge, wasn’t even released in America!  (I had to buy my copy from Amazon.com.UK.)  However, if you love bad movies, I recommend seeing ZOMBEAK.  Official trailer:

Next up is BIRDEMIC: SHOCK AND TERROR (2010).  Now, don’t get your feathers ruffled and cluck, “but she already reviewed that back in April of 2011!”  No article about murderous fowl would be complete without re-examining James Nguyen’s contribution to the genre.  And, at the same time, comparing it to the above movie.  Let’s begin with the stars of both ... the birds.  Nguyen’s low-resolution, badly animated GIF attacking birds were without a doubt the worst I’d even seen ... until ZOMBEAK’s blood-spattered feathered-covered sock-puppet came into existence.  So, while Nguyen’s vicious birds were non-existent, ZOMBEAK’s gore-covered bird was an actual prop.  Well, sort of.
Next, let’s look at the human actors.  Both movies were on an even keel with one another and would do justice to any middle school play!  With few exceptions, each was the only screen credit to date for most of their casts.  The biggest difference is that in ZOMBEAK, the actors seemed to be having a great time, while the actors in BIRDEMIC seemed uncomfortable and awkward.  Now, on to the scripts.  ZOMBEAK wins this category claw’s-down!  While ZOMBEAK’s script was just as nonsensical as BIRDEMIC, at least we didn’t have to listen to Nguyen’s broken-English scripted lines.  I know I’ll never forget such BIRDEMIC-pearls as “I like you and because you’re so pretty to me.”  ZOMBEAK had a script fairly brimming over with intended and unintended humor!  The production values in BIRDEMIC were better, but Nguyen took three years to get his work in the can.  ZOMBEAK did it in 30 days.  So, they are birds of a feather.  BIRDEMIC: SHOCK AND TERROR trailer:
BIRDEMIC 2: THE RESURRECTION coming soon!  (Or maybe not.)

Lastly, let’s examine POULTRYGEIST: NIGHT OF THE CHICKEN DEAD (2006).  Arbie (Jason Yachanin) and this girlfriend Wendy (Kate Graham) are getting it on in an ancient Indian burial graveyard.  On the night before she’s leaving for college.  Promising to be faithful to one another, they part.  One year later, Arbie returns to the scene of his first (and only) sexual encounter only to be startled by the sight of an American Chicken Bunker restaurant that has been built there.  Meanwhile, Wendy has become a “left-wing lipstick wearing lesbian.”  Disillusioned, Arbie take a slave-wage job at the restaurant.  Among his fellow workers are a gay Hispanic named Paco Bell (Khalid Rivera, who literally is turned into a Sloppy Jose!), an animal-loving redneck Carl Jr. (Caleb Emerson), and a burqa-wearing, bumbling Muslim (Rose Ghavami).  Unknown to all is that the long-dead Indian spirits lie uneasy and have begun to bring back dead chickens as zombie fowl!  Add to the mix copious gore, nudity, gratuitous sex, lesbians, fat people, slime, car crashes, political incorrectness and men’s hairy butts.  Toss in some musical tunes with such titles as “Green Eggs and Pam” and “S-U-I-C-I-D-E” and with lyrics like “my meat in your buns makes a special sauce” and you have the first Troma film to get a theatrical release in the past 25 years!

Gross, perverted, disgusting, crude and outrageous do not even begin to describe this latest product from the perpetually 8-year-old mind of Lloyd Kaufman.  POULTRYGEIST has something to offend anyone...and everyone!  But, that’s what Lloyd does best, a fact made clear by the at least 15 minutes of bragging, boasting and product selling Lloyd does before the movie even starts!  Touted by audiences to be the “best since Toxic Avenger,” it met with the highest acclaim of any film in Troma’s thirty-five year history.  However, that didn’t translate into box office receipts.  POULTRYGEIST had an estimated budget of $450,000 but only grossed $22,623 in ticket receipts and ranks a low #85 in the horror comedy genre.  In other words, it bombed.  Why?  Probably for the very same reasons it’s beloved by its fans.  Filled with “disgusting low-ball humor” and described by IMDB user reviews as “perverse and childish,” they still consider this to be, “a gross-out comedy/ musical/ horror film that is so much fun, it’s hard not to love.”  That said, when the roosters come home to roost, they will not have to fight for space in my Video Vault because POULTRYGEIST was sent winging its way back to Netflix.  IMHO, Troma laid an egg with POULTRYGEIST: NIGHT OF THE CHICKEN DEAD.  Trailer:

No article about fowl-based death would be complete without a shout-out to that granddad of feathered mayhem that is BLOOD FREAK (1972).  Billed as “the World’s only turkey-monster anti-drug pro-Jesus-Gore-Film” it stars Steve Hawkes, at one-time playing Tarzan in some Spanish movies until an accidental fire on a set left his right arm and cheek badly scarred, as Herschell, a biker who gives a lift to an ultra-religious young woman named Angel (Heather Hughes).  She takes Herschell back home where he meets her sister, Ann (Dana Cullivan), who’s a druggie.  Falling under Ann’s spell, Herschell allows himself to be talked into smoking pot and getting hot with Ann.  Then, while at work on a turkey farm, he’s given the task of eating an entire cooked turkey.  Unbeknownst by him, the turkey is laced with a powerful drug that turns Herschell into...A WERE-TURKEY!  Seeking blood, he kills several young women.  Then, he cuts a man’s leg off in a sawmill.  Finally, he goes back home, hanging his turkey waddle in shame where he has sex with Ann, who ponders throughout the act about what their children will look like.  Will God take pity on Herschell?  Will Herschell’s new appearance get him promoted at the turkey farm?  Will the narrator of this movie make it through all 86 minutes before hacking up a lung?


BLOOD FREAK was directed and narrated by Brad F. Grinter, a skinny chain-smoking cracker of a man with a hacking cough and a bad Elvis haircut.  His primary job in this movie, aside from smoking up all of the tobacco industry’s yearly crop, is to make rambling and nonsensical philosophical insights about the movie and God in general.  This movie typifies zero-budget films.  Bad acting, bouncy camera work, laughable script, indifferent directing, bizarre plot and possibly the only film to use the previously unknown “female Wilhelm Scream,” it has everything required to leave generations of audiences scratching their heads in wonder.  But, wait!  The Something Weird Video disc of BLOOD FREAK comes with bonus material titled “Brad Grinter, Nudist”!  Yep!  That walking, talking nicotine patch is a nudist!  And he lets it all hang out in this short.  And that, dear friends, is the scariest part of BLOOD FREAK!  Trailer:

Well, it’s time for this old bird to fly the coop.  I’d like to thank all of you for enduring this four-piece chicken-McNugget movie marathon with me.  And, I hope that, if you should decide to watch some (or all) of the above-mentioned movies, you have more Yuks than cluck’s!  Gobble-gobble!

MSTjunkie







Cambot's Voice: EXPERIMENT 11: #418 ATTACK OF THE EYE CREATURES


Cambot’s Voice by S. J. Martiene

EXPERIMENT 11:  attack of the eye creatures


Here we are halfway through the spring that thinks it is summer.  So, when it is hot outside, one must stay inside to watch movies.  And watch we must, especially when the movie is bad.  And I promise you, this is a bad one.  You have been warned.  1965’s ATTACK OF THE THE EYE CREATURES stars no one you know, except Ethan Allen (whom we all thought was dead), and Peter Graves…YES, Peter Graves who had the foresight to NOT be credited in this movie.  For me, this was more like a poor man’s THE BLOB without Steve McQueen and Helen Crump, instead replacing them with Earl Holliman and The Hair That Ate Lover’s Lane.  Still, plod through, I must….and I did.  For this you must thank me.  I SAID THANK ME, GOSHDARNIT!!!!!
Whew….I feel better now.  Enjoy!!!

Cast (in credits order)
...
Stan Kenyon
...
Susan Rogers
...
Lt. Robertson
...
Mike Lawrence
...
Carl Fenton
...
Old Man Bailey
...
Col. Harrison
...
Cpl. Culver
...
Culver's Sergeant (as Tony Houston)
(as Johnathan Ledford)
...
Diner Waitress
...
Harold's Girlfriend
...
Man in Diner
...
Elderly Detective (as George Edgely)
...
Sergeant on Guard
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Narrator of USAF Briefing Film (uncredited)
...
USAF General (uncredited)


Courtesy of www.imdb.com

HOST SEGMENT
Crow and Servo are going through their “friends” phase.  Ultimately, they decided they were not so fond of each other after all.  The Mads begin the Invention Exchange clad with a large Ouija board power tools and accessories.  They assert that all the great woodworkers are dead. *Not a criticism* (Dr. Forester).  They try to contact Ethan Allen (cue cast list).  Seriously…look at the cast list for this movie.  Joel & TB fire up the Funny Gag Fax.  Dr. Forester gets the fax complete with a seltzer spray in the face.  In his anger, he promises to send ATTACK OF THE EYE CREATURES, which he was going to do anyway.
MOVIE SIGN
The scene opens with a man in a suit with a briefcase heading into some type of military installation.  The officer begins loading the film.  *If AV Geeks ruled the world* (Joel) The opening title appears—ATTACK OF THE THE EYE CREATURES.  This should set the tone for the movie from this moment on.  *Did Mel Tillis write these titles or what?* (Joel)
A Lt. Robertson is called in to watch the film…this dire and highly secure film.  The top-secret film is narrated by the uncredited, MSTie favorite …Peter Graves.  Alien ships (such as they are) are encircling the earth.  Graves cautions of “world-wide panic.”  *From a bagel?* (Crow).  When the film ends, the General gives the Lieutenant his orders and sends him back to his post.  This watch post is occupied by the two hemorrhoids in the film (like this film needs help inflicting pain).  Culver and Culver’s Sergeant (as they are billed) are doing infra-red surveillance and just happen upon the locale du jour --- LOVER’S LANE.    A girl in one of the lovebird pairs insists they are being watched. The pair of men enjoy their voyeur sessions and then Lt. Robertson busts them.  After a scolding they go back to the surveillance.  *Joel I need a shower* (Crow).    The next scene MERCIFULLY takes us to The White Rock Café *Where whitey comes to sing and dance* (Crow).  *Rock and Roll can lead to meeting people with similar interest.* (Joel) *Brought to you by White Beer.  There’s a trailer park of flavor in every bottle* (Servo).  We get the privilege of meeting two more characters, Mike and Carl.  They are the typical obnoxious guys who never get dates but extol stories of their many adventures to the uninvited listener.  This prompts Joel to apologize for every male in the human race.  After bemoaning their failed attempts at getting dates/making money, Mike decides to go home and Carl decides to stay out later.  Lightning flashes.  *I can’t believe I made those two* (Servo as God).  *I don’t know about you guys, but I’m rooting for THE THE EYE CREATURES* (Crow).  Carl is driving along and sees the spaceship.  Unfortunately, during this time we also see the Lover’s Lane crowd and Culver’s Sergeant.  *TURN IT OFF!!  TURN IT OFF!!* (Crow) we return to Carl showing his horror at the site.  We also temporarily get Rick-Rolled by Servo and Crow does a mean Peter Lorre impression.  The news of the spaceship sighting gets back to The White Rock Café.  The patrons include Lt. Harrison who insists there is no such thing as spaceships and introduction to our hero, Stan Kenyon.  As the scene changes back and forth from Carl driving around in the light of day and dark of night, we also get to meet shotgun-wielding Old Man Bailey.  OMB (as he shall be called from here on out) hates the young people driving past his property, and really hates those “Durn Smoochers” most of all.  OMB is the most likeable character in the film.  Stan has picked up his gal Susan.  She has hair issues.  *Umm your head is full* (Joel)
  


HOST SEGMENT
Tom Servo is in a car and he wants to make out.  Crow screams, Gypsy has something else to do.  Magic Voice has no physical being.  Servo ponders all the questions concerning making out.  Joel comes up to him.  “You know sir, you ask too many questions.”  Then he plants a big kiss on his very confused robot.

MOVIE SIGN
Carl goes back home to wake up Mike and tell him of his discovery.  Mike is not impressed with Carl’s description of the spaceship, “It’s big and round and glows funny-like.”  *No that’s the Big Boy sign* (Crow) Mike smacks Carl upside the head.  *It’s Punch and Goofy* (Servo) Carl decides to leave Mike sleeping and head to his million dollar venture alone.  A decision that will prove fatal, but I digress.  After a military interlude, we go back to OMB who hears the roar of Smoochers.   *We join Ernest Hemingway at his home in Ketchum, Idaho* (Servo) Susan and Stan are driving down a “dark” road.  *Hard to see the road when it’s….NOON.* (Joel)  *Is her head an egg sack or for water storage or.* (Crow) The duo run over something in the road.  It’s a THE THE EYE CREATURE or *It’s beluga caviar* (Servo) *He ran over a fungus* (Joel) *I think we killed the Michelin Man* (Servo)  The hand of the creature is severed and it punctures the tire.  The duo walk on the really DARK road and find OMB’s place.  *Hmm E. Gein* (Crow)  *That looks like a nice place, let’s try the Last House on the Left* (Joel).  They knock on the door and walk in and they call the police who, IN FINE Blob-like fashion, do not believe Stan and Susan.  The phone dies.  OMB returns with a vengeance, runs the couple off his property, and he calls the police.  Stan and Susan take another scary stroll in the DARK.  *Sure hope they don’t get a moonburn* (Servo)   Surprisingly (or not) we switch to the nearly-forgotten character of Carl who comes upon the injured THE THE EYE CREATURE.  He covers it up and heads to OMB’s place while the old guy is out scanning for Smoochers.  Carl uses the phone (geez, no wonder the old man is cranky) to call Mike and tell him of his discovery.  Once again, Mike is not impressed.  Carl tells Mike to take everything out of the fridge because what he found is perishable.  Mike relents and they hang up.  It is at this juncture that we finally get to see Mike’s “nightgown”.  Use the photo above for reference.  Mike makes Sheldon Cooper look like Mr. Universe.  Mike starts to clean out the fridge.  Carl goes back to his “discovery”.  OMB returns home…crisis averted and no shots fired.  Carl is attacked by *creamy nougat centers* (Servo)   Thus comes the end of Carl.

HOST SEGMENT
Joel and The Bots give a tribute to Earl Holliman.  Why?  Because *Earl Holliman would have been William Shatner had there not already been one* (Joel).
MOVIE SIGN
The military has been activated to take care of this national security situation that is supposed to be secret.  Susan and Stan are attempting to get back to the car when they see one of THE THE EYE CREATURES.  A police car comes down the road and they flag them down.  They find Carl’s body and the two are taken into police custody.  The police bristle at the “spacemen” story.  At the police station, reports are filed.  They are accused of killing Carl.  Susan’s father enters (a city attorney).  “Don’t you want to hear about the monster?”  *NO!!!!!!!* (J&TB).  The military has surrounded the spaceship.  *Come out with your eyes up!* (Joel).   We come next to the funeral home where Carl was taken to get Susan and Stan to confess.  They are shocked to see it is Carl and not THE THE EYE CREATURE.  Susan:  “I saw it!!”  *With my own hair* (Servo).  Stan and Susan sneak away from the police station to go and visit the crime scene.  Prior to this, Crow tries to leave the theatre when the voyeurs re-enter the picture.  This time, however, they don’t see the love birds, they see one of THE THE EYE CREATURES.  *Lenny and Squiggy join the Navy* (Crow).  The two think they are watching a Science Fiction movie.  As Susan and Stan go to investigate, the previously severed hand enters the police car.  *Hand Christian Anderson* (Servo)   Susan screams when the hand touches her shoulder.  The Bots do not understand why they just don’t put the hand….in the glove box or her handbag.  The couple visit Carl, and Carl verifies the story with the police.  The trio head to the hot bed of activity.  THE THE EYE CREATURES try to “attack” the police car with the severed hand, but it only results in *minor vandalism* (Servo).
HOST SEGMENT
Rip Taylor parody full of moustaches, glitter, and bad “eye” jokes.  Seriously, just find it on YouTube.
MOVIE SIGN

Mike, Susan, and Stan arrive back at the police car with the severed hand.  Mike takes a flash picture of the hand and it disappears.  THE THE EYE CREATURES are meandering about.  It is at this point we see just how many eye creatures there aren’t.  You can see zippers and many of them only have the headpieces.  *attack of the lazy eye creatures* (Crow)   *Attack of the ‘I-don’t-think-so’ creatures*  (Servo).  The tension is exhausting as the creatures flail with extreme prejudice.  One of them captures Mike.  Stan and Susan try to make a run for it.  They make the intelligent decision to go to OMB’s place to use the phone and try and get the police out to the scene.  The police are hesitant.  They decide to enlist all the friends at lover’s lane.  *When teenagers saved the world* (Servo)  The convoy slowly makes its way into the DARK.  Stan gives them instructions.  The kids turn their headlights on and implode all the eye creatures…..and THANKFULLY, we see Mike is safe.  OMB starts firing his pistol and the kids skedaddle away.

HOST SEGMENT
J&TB show proof that the producers of the movie just didn’t care:  especially the day/night sequences that were confused.  Next, they describe lameness of THE THE EYE CREATURES—from their lack of powers to their lack of costumes.  Then, they went through most of the characters, and ended each example with *THEY JUST DIDN’T CARE* (J&TB)    They toss it back to The Mads where Mike is posing as the film’s director, James Buchanan.  It is determined….He just didn’t care.
I have to tell you this was a hard movie to get through.  I think if the movie had just limited it to the kids vs. the police and left out the military aspect, it had a shot at being enjoyable for me.  HOWEVER, if they had released it that way then the movie would have had a run time of about 43 minutes.  As it stands, I guess it was the best they could do with a $16,000 budget.

See you next time!!!!