Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

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Jinnistan
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Jinnistan » Wed Sep 11, 2019 1:02 am

Wooley wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:30 am
I think I put this after Kill, Baby, Kill, Black Sunday, and Black Sabbath, but a fine and beautiful addition that actually delivers on the story.
I prefer Lace to Sabbath, but they're not far apart in quality. Other than that, completely agree.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:04 am

Jinnistan wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 1:02 am
I prefer Lace to Sabbath, but they're not far apart in quality. Other than that, completely agree.
Yeah, I just think the opener and closer of Sabbath are stunning. The middle one's fine. But "Wurdelak" is like the last great thing Karloff ever did and one of the last legitimately fairly scary vampire films and is just overall pretty gripping.

I do have to say, I thought B&BL would bring everybody out of the woodwork, I know it's popular around here. Well, moving on...
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by ThatDarnMKS » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:16 am

B&BL is my favorite Bava and perhaps my favorite giallo. I need to rewatch Tenebrae and Torso to be sure though.

Check out Hatchet for the Honeymoon next. I think it's Bava's only other giallo to come close. He has other dang groovy gialli but I think those two are in a league of their own.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:30 am

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Holy fuckballz, what a movie!
Yet another, in such a long line, as I've talked about for years, of "classics" I never watched because of some combination of "I'm saving it" and "It can't possibly live up to its hype" that has absolutely dick-punched me.
What a fuckin' movie.
Despite its fame, I knew almost nothing going into this movie except that it seemed that some country rube was gonna go to New York and end up on the sleazier side of the street, somehow involving Dustin Hoffman's character, who I knew nothing about except that he seemed sleazy. Imagine my surprise to learn that it's a movie about a genuine friendship between to desperately lonely marginalized people.
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Two people who meet at about the best they're gonna be and just weather the downhill struggle together the best they can. I mean, this movie kinda broke my heart a little. While it was knocking me on my ass.
And despite some startling and weighty and at times beautiful work by director John Schlesinger, the movie hangs its considerable weight on the performances of two actors who just feel absolutely all-in.
Jon Voight (sadly now a caricature of the most awful sort of people America has to offer) gives a painfully raw and open performance as small-town Texan, Joe Buck, a boy with big, if pathetic, ideas about how he's going to conquer the world...
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And Dustin Hoffman, perhaps my personal winner for best pure actor from the great crop of 70s actors (Meryl Streep excluded from the game as she really fully emerged at the turn of the 80s) giving just a crushing, tragic performance as perhaps one of the most pathetic characters ever to grace the screen, Enrico "Ratso" Rizzo, a "cripple" hustling just barely well enough to get by in an unforgiving city, surviving more by lying to himself and dreaming than anything else.
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I mean, a performance like this... it's just not something you see very often. There are great performances and there is Dustin Hoffman just completely giving himself over to being this pitiful human being. It's chilling.

Really this movie was simultaneously (paradoxically) exactly what I expected and nothing like what I expected. It's, narratively, very nearly exactly the film I thought it might be (understand again, I intentionally kept myself as much in the dark on this movie, for decades now, as I could) and yet, thematically, emotionally, something I never saw coming. It is a deeply empathetic film, while also being an almost unpleasantly bleak film, while also being, really, a straight-up art-film, and all of these just naturally a part of the whole.
For all the grief the Academy gets, boy sometimes (Best Picture, 1970, only X-rated film ever to win) they get it so right.
I could say so much more about this film, about cinematography, about dream-sequences, about homophobia, about its unflinching (for 1969) frankness about the city, poverty, homosexuality, desperation, sex, liberation, about great supporting performances, I feel like I could talk about it for days, but I'll just leave it here, as one of the best films I've seen in a very long time.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Jinnistan » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:57 am

Wooley wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:04 am
But "Wurdelak" is like the last great thing Karloff ever did
As good as it is, I have to steer you towards Targets, if you haven't seen that one. It isn't quite Karloff's last film (he cranked out a couple of shitty low-budget ones after that), but it sums up his legacy better than any of his later films. A phenomenal "horror" film that is as much about the then (1968) shifting cultural presumptions of violence, in an age of civil strife and Vietnam, as it is about the genre's more traditional triggers.

Also, I believe Grinch was after Sabbath, and without trying to be cliched, uh....pretty fucking great, imo.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by MadMan » Thu Sep 12, 2019 6:43 am

A thread like this inspires me to actually do a Top 100 Horror films with commentary, but my regular time job has left me so tired. Go forth, sir.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Thu Sep 12, 2019 3:31 pm

Jinnistan wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:57 am
As good as it is, I have to steer you towards Targets, if you haven't seen that one. It isn't quite Karloff's last film (he cranked out a couple of shitty low-budget ones after that), but it sums up his legacy better than any of his later films. A phenomenal "horror" film that is as much about the then (1968) shifting cultural presumptions of violence, in an age of civil strife and Vietnam, as it is about the genre's more traditional triggers.

Also, I believe Grinch was after Sabbath, and without trying to be cliched, uh....pretty fucking great, imo.
Good point on Grinch/Sabbath.

I'll look into Targets, thanks.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Thu Sep 12, 2019 3:34 pm

MadMan wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 6:43 am
A thread like this inspires me to actually do a Top 100 Horror films with commentary, but my regular time job has left me so tired. Go forth, sir.
It's fun, but it is time-consuming. A lot of effort in saying something coherent about a film and finding good images to reflect what you want to say.
Worthwhile, ultimately, but it's a pretty narrow margin when you consider the time and effort, you really have to just do it for yourself and personal satisfaction and hope somebody actually reads it but not worry if no one does or says a word.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Captain Terror » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:18 pm

Wooley wrote:
Tue Sep 03, 2019 3:44 pm
Honestly, it's not very good, but it has to be seen, just part of the the universe. The music is much less inspired but still has enough moments and weirdness and a few good songs. The title track is the highlight with songs like "Bitchin' In The Kitchen", "Lullaby", "Look What I Did To My Id", and "Duel Duet" working out ok. Really the movie lacks the personalities and the hooks of the first film but if you have a curio cabinet of weird movies, you could put it in there.
Watched it last night and mostly agree. I was into it. I think the big difference between the two films is that only one of them has Tim Curry. Replace him with someone less awesome and I suspect the two films wouldn't seem so far apart.
It's disappointing that O'Brien & Sharman haven't done more over the years. (I suspect that O'Brien is the main thrust here, but I'm combining them anyway because I know nothing about the situation). Granted, something like ST is going to appeal to a very specific (and small) audience, but I was very impressed with how committed they were to this world they'd created. Whether you like the film or not, there's no denying that it is its own thing. And it feels connected in spirit to Rocky. I'd like to have seen more from this team.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by crumbsroom » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:54 pm

Jinnistan wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:57 am
As good as it is, I have to steer you towards Targets, if you haven't seen that one. It isn't quite Karloff's last film (he cranked out a couple of shitty low-budget ones after that), but it sums up his legacy better than any of his later films. A phenomenal "horror" film that is as much about the then (1968) shifting cultural presumptions of violence, in an age of civil strife and Vietnam, as it is about the genre's more traditional triggers.

Also, I believe Grinch was after Sabbath, and without trying to be cliched, uh....pretty fucking great, imo.
It's not nearly as good as either Targets or Black Sabbath, but The Sorcerers has its place in the Karloff canon.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:59 pm

crumbsroom wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:54 pm
It's not nearly as good as either Targets or Black Sabbath, but The Sorcerers has its place in the Karloff canon.
I really think Karloff is one of the most under-appreciated actors I can think of, and I mean in their own time. I'll never understand how he didn't get more high-brow work.
When you consider his dual (duel?) performances in The Black Room, look at Isle Of The Dead, consider The Body Snatcher (maybe his finest moment), listen to what he did with How The Grinch Stole Christmas, and then, more subtly, look at how much more interesting his portrayal of the Frankenstein monster is to Lon Chaney Jr., Bela Lugosi, and Glenn Strange, where the creature is just a mindless avatar of horror instead of something that is really struggling with itself, you see that Karloff was a real actor and one with significant dramatic range. It's really strange to me that it either was never recognized or that people simply didn't want to utilize his obvious talent.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Thu Sep 12, 2019 9:08 pm

Captain Terror wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:18 pm
Watched it last night and mostly agree. I was into it. I think the big difference between the two films is that only one of them has Tim Curry. Replace him with someone less awesome and I suspect the two films wouldn't seem so far apart.
It's disappointing that O'Brien & Sharman haven't done more over the years. (I suspect that O'Brien is the main thrust here, but I'm combining them anyway because I know nothing about the situation). Granted, something like ST is going to appeal to a very specific (and small) audience, but I was very impressed with how committed they were to this world they'd created. Whether you like the film or not, there's no denying that it is its own thing. And it feels connected in spirit to Rocky. I'd like to have seen more from this team.
Yeah, it's an oddity that I'm glad exists but I don't want to spend too much of my time on it. I think the movie loses me during "Thank God I'm A Man", a seemingly out-of-place number that's uninspired both musically and visually, really blunt and unsophisticated, and again with "Me Of Me" for more or less the same reasons.
Then it'll pull me back in with things like "Shock Treatment", "Little Black Dress" (not a great number but kinda fun), "Lullaby", and "Look What I Did To My Id".
But I agree with you, it's mostly in the personalities. Cliff DeYoung and Jessica Harper are both trained singers (compared to their predecessors who really weren't) but they just don't have the same magnetism as Bostwick and Sarandon. And DeYoung, again, is no Tim Curry.
I agree I'd like to have seen much more from O'Brien and Sharman and I suspect if Shock Treatment had worked out better we would have.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Captain Terror » Fri Sep 13, 2019 2:30 am

And oh yeah, you should definitely watch Targets
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:39 am

ThatDarnMKS wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:16 am
B&BL is my favorite Bava and perhaps my favorite giallo. I need to rewatch Tenebrae and Torso to be sure though.

Check out Hatchet for the Honeymoon next. I think it's Bava's only other giallo to come close. He has other dang groovy gialli but I think those two are in a league of their own.
Oh, I'd overlooked this post, thanks, I will try to check that. And Torso has been on the list for a while it may happen this month.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Slentert » Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:05 pm

I just wanted to say I love this thread. Makes me want to put some more effort in my own.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Thief » Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:22 pm

I hadn't checked this thread in a while, but I'm glad to read your Dementia 13 write-up. I've been curious about it for a while, and it's available on a couple of streaming services, but I hadn't gotten to it.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Fri Sep 13, 2019 9:36 pm

Slentert wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 7:05 pm
I just wanted to say I love this thread. Makes me want to put some more effort in my own.
Hey man, thanks a lot, I really appreciate that.

Makes me wanna work harder on it and deliver more content.
(But I have a date tonight. ;) )
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Captain Terror » Fri Sep 13, 2019 9:59 pm

Wooley wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 9:36 pm

Makes me wanna work harder on it and deliver more content.
(But I have a date tonight. ;) )
And what are WE supposed to do in the meantime?
Bros before hoes!
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Slentert » Fri Sep 13, 2019 10:26 pm

Wooley wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 9:36 pm
Makes me wanna work harder on it and deliver more content.
(But I have a date tonight. ;) )
In that case, I'll look forward to your review of your date night. ;)
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by MadMan » Sun Sep 15, 2019 8:17 am

Wooley wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 3:34 pm
It's fun, but it is time-consuming. A lot of effort in saying something coherent about a film and finding good images to reflect what you want to say.
Worthwhile, ultimately, but it's a pretty narrow margin when you consider the time and effort, you really have to just do it for yourself and personal satisfaction and hope somebody actually reads it but not worry if no one does or says a word.
Well fuck it I'm still reading. PARTY ON, WAYNE.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Tue Sep 17, 2019 3:56 am

You people are absolutely useless! If you weren't gonna steer me to a film like this, after all this time, then what good are ya?!
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Tue Sep 17, 2019 3:24 pm

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Holy absolute fuckballz.
I cannot believe that I am just now seeing this. What an extraordinary film.
For those who have not seen it, this is the story of a child born in a prison to woman who dubs the child an asura, demon of vengeance, and saddles the child with the vendetta she herself cannot fulfill. The child is raised with one purpose only, to avenge her mother by killing those who have wronged her.
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And it actually gets a lot darker than that. But I don't want to spoil it.
While this is a film of bloody revenge, perhaps bordering on pulp, it is truly beautiful movie. Beautiful. I had tears welling at times while I was horrified at others, stunned at still others, and filled with the pleasure bordering on joy we here get from great film throughout.
The scope of it is truly amazing from the broad use of different cinematographic and lighting techniques...
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...to the use of a wide array of genres in the score (including Classical and Jazz?!!!). The set-design and man, the costumes, are a master-class for any filmmaker or fan.
And while it's a visually arresting film (and aurally too?) the film is carried from start to finish by by an intense and rangy central performance from Meiko Kaji to make Uma Thurman hide her face behind a fan.
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This is also a surprisingly brutal film not just in the gore but in the emotional stakes on the characters, there are some emotionally very weighty moments throughout. The film is filled with action, suspense, and pathos, in delicately balanced measures. I was absolutely stunned by the emotional turns the narrative took several times.
In short, Lady Snowblood is a nearly perfect film with superlative craft in every phase and a strong emotional core giving gravity to its exciting, suspenseful, and even sad tale of revenge. It is instantly one of my favorite films that I've ever seen.

Now there's one thing that must be addressed, it is such an enormous elephant in the room.
I am reminded, obviously, of some of the issues I have with Quentin Tarantino's films and I am reminded of the old taunt “see more movies”. As in, the more movies I see, the less impressed I am with Tarantino, from Le Samourai to Once Upon A Time In The West to Lady Snowblood (to name a few).
I have always loved Kill Bill, but LS makes it seem like mere mimicry for much of its run-time. Tarantino makes no bones about his intended homage to Toshiya Fujita's film, but there is a point where homage crosses over. I would almost go as far as to say that if you've seen Lady Snowblood, you've seen Kill Bill. I believe I will still always enjoy the latter, while overwhelmingly preferring the former, but I will never see it or its director the same way again.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Rock » Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:20 pm

Yeah, that one's pretty great and Kaji is pretty amazing in it. The sequel is also worth your time, although I found switching to a more politically-charged plot diluted its effectiveness.

I recently went through the Stray Cat Rock series which also stars Kaji and those ones are pretty good too (especially if you like rock and roll, knife fights and anti-establishment themes), if not as good as Lady Snowblood. The also give Kaji a greater range of roles (she plays a different character in each movie), and if you thought her stare was killer, wait until you see her smile. :heart:

I'm also planning to check out the Female Prisoner Scorpion movies, although I see the Arrow box set went out of print and my video store only carries the first one.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Slentert » Tue Sep 17, 2019 8:12 pm

I recently watched Blind Woman's Curse, also starring Kaji, and that one was a lot of fun as well. I think you would enjoy that one, Wooley.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Captain Terror » Tue Sep 17, 2019 8:13 pm

I haven't seen Lady Snowblood either, if it makes you feel better. Every time I visit this thread my watch list gets longer.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Captain Terror » Tue Sep 17, 2019 8:14 pm

Captain Terror wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 8:13 pm
Every time I visit this thread my watch list gets longer.
I didn't intend for that to sound like a naughty euphemism, but what's done is done.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Takoma1 » Tue Sep 17, 2019 8:18 pm

Slentert wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 8:12 pm
I recently watched Blind Woman's Curse, also starring Kaji, and that one was a lot of fun as well. I think you would enjoy that one, Wooley.
Yeah, Blind Woman's Curse is great.

I would also recommend the recent Blade of the Immortal which is like a mix of horror, comedy, action, drama, and thriller.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Jinnistan » Wed Sep 18, 2019 5:14 am

Wooley wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 3:56 am
You people are absolutely useless! If you weren't gonna steer me to a film like this, after all this time, then what good are ya?!
Are you talking about Lady Snowblood? I think MKS mentions it every other week.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Wed Sep 18, 2019 10:55 am

Jinnistan wrote:
Wed Sep 18, 2019 5:14 am
Are you talking about Lady Snowblood? I think MKS mentions it every other week.
Yes.
I was joking, I only ever heard about it because of this place.
But I still think someone should have actually flown down here, put it on my TV and taped my eyelids open.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Fri Sep 20, 2019 10:37 pm

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I have been waiting for years to watch this film.
Based on the trailer, which may be the best trailer I've ever seen, this was a movie that I would need to be prepared for, a movie I would want to make sure I was in the perfect mood to not let a single drop of its sheer awesomeness roll by.
[youtube]https://nWF0bBKhe6o&t=21s[/youtube]
This was going to be the movie I had waited for my whole life, the movie I would have made if I had realized the dream of becoming a filmmaker.
Disturbingly, while I read some glowing reviews of how it would "take your breath away" as it was "an amazing work of art" and "an inter-dimensional adventure", I also read multiple folks around RT and even here saying it was pretty disappointing. How could this be?!
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So, for both reasons, I sat on it for year and finally pulled the trigger last night. Would it plug directly into my cortex the way I imagined or would my hopes be dashed? What would be the result?

Sighhhhhh...

There's a lot to like about this movie, there really is. It's mostly good-looking - like really good-looking. It hints at a truly deep and fascinating story of journeys of the mind. It has some of the most psychotropic moments probably ever committed to film. Unfortunately, they're mostly in the trailer.

For those who have not seen it, this movie is about, as much as it's about anything, the head of a cutting-edge and very unconventional research facility and his only patient, and what is going on between them and why. The audience, ostensibly, will be taken on a journey to the farthest reaches of human possibility... if only there was a script. There's a lot, and I mean a lot of vague hinting at awesome shit. Amazing shit, like The Sentionaut!
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You're like, "I don't know what The Sentionaut is, but I bet it's gonna be awesome when I do!"
Well, I finished the movie. And I don't know what The Sentionaut is.
And surely, you must imagine that, once you meet this guy...
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...you're basically starting the downslope of a black-diamond run of amazeballz. And yet...
There's really a lot of walking in hallways in this movie. Like fully 15-20 minutes of people walking down hallways, but like awesomely, I guess. Or driving, also apparently awesomely. And in a way, it is awesome. I mean, really the movie is visually pretty much everything it promised. Except when the budget actually shows through a little bit at times, but that's probably picking nits. But really, this feels like a movie that was dreamed up visually, possibly if not probably under the influence of one hallucinogen or another or several (there seems to be a pretty clear parallel here to an ayahuasca experience), instead of written and then a script that probably could have made an interesting short-film got dragged out to an hour and forty-nine minutes. It probably didn't help that the climax is almost unbearably anti-climactic and the movie ends exactly the way you picture it ending 10 minutes in.
I am not sorry I watched this, not remotely. I am kinda sorry it wasn't better. But I hope people keep at least trying to make films like the film Cosmatos tried to make here. Because those are the movies I would like to have made and are still the ones I most want to see.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Captain Terror » Fri Sep 20, 2019 11:41 pm

Wooley wrote:
Fri Sep 20, 2019 10:37 pm

I am not sorry I watched this, not remotely. I am kinda sorry it wasn't better. But I hope people keep at least trying to make films like the film Cosmatos tried to make here. Because those are the movies I would like to have made and are still the ones I most want to see.
Fully agree with this part. I'm not as down on it as others around here, but I concede that it's a chore to sit through. However, a better version of this movie is much more my thing than something like Mandy. Which I also liked, it's just that all things being equal BTBR is more my speed. That speed being first gear, I guess. :)
And I have no qualms about admitting that all the (literal) face-melting stuff in the middle of the film was 100% worth sitting through the boring parts. Like I fully expect to own this on Blu Ray one day, even though I will likely never watch the entire thing.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Jinnistan » Sat Sep 21, 2019 1:22 am

I, for one, value gumption.

I am a fan.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Takoma1 » Sat Sep 21, 2019 2:28 am

Beyond the Black Rainbow lacks a center. There's a real dearth of meaningful character development, and the visuals themselves are not enough of a coherent "character" to act as the substance of the film. Pieces of it are great from a visual point of view, but taken as a whole it just doesn't flow.

I also didn't really care for the overtones/implications of sexual violence/exploitation (the drawings, the circumstances of an adult man holding a young woman captive). The lack of characterization made it feel like these elements were thrown in for cheap thrills. It's pretty startling to consider just how well the same director handled elements of sexual violence (and concise characterization) in Mandy.

I know what Captain Terror means when he says how good a "best version" of Beyond the Black Rainbow would be. But it's just too far from that "best self" for me. I'm not mad I watched it or anything, and I think it's even a film I'd recommend to horror fans. But it's greatest impression is that of wasted potential.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:35 am

Captain Terror wrote:
Fri Sep 20, 2019 11:41 pm
And I have no qualms about admitting that all the (literal) face-melting stuff in the middle of the film was 100% worth sitting through the boring parts.
Agreed, that is probably the most amazing representation of crossing-over I've seen. I've taken enough hallucinogens in my day to know what it's really like, although I've never done a full-on ego-eraser like the one even more exaggerated here, but this is rung really true and was visually special.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:43 am

Takoma1 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 2:28 am

I also didn't really care for the overtones/implications of sexual violence/exploitation (the drawings, the circumstances of an adult man holding a young woman captive). The lack of characterization made it feel like these elements were thrown in for cheap thrills.
The drawings are about reproduction rather than sex (or certainly sexual violence, although Cosmatos may have been feinting at that to create more tension), which is why Barry's penis is glowing at another point in the movie. It's about creating a new life-from the higher sentience (hence The Sentionaut), and that new life is Elena. And the reproduction-stuff even is not directed at Elena, it is about her, as she is Barry's daughter, spawned, with his wife/Elena's mother, right as he came back from "beyond the black rainbow", and is, therefore a new type of sentience, hence her psionic abilities.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Takoma1 » Sat Sep 21, 2019 5:41 pm

Wooley wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 6:43 am
The drawings are about reproduction rather than sex (or certainly sexual violence, although Cosmatos may have been feinting at that to create more tension), which is why Barry's penis is glowing at another point in the movie. It's about creating a new life-from the higher sentience (hence The Sentionaut), and that new life is Elena. And the reproduction-stuff even is not directed at Elena, it is about her, as she is Barry's daughter, spawned, with his wife/Elena's mother, right as he came back from "beyond the black rainbow", and is, therefore a new type of sentience, hence her psionic abilities.
When a man is
holding a woman captive and we are then shown graphic drawings of her vagina, I think that there is an implied sexual threat. Even if it's later revealed to not be the driving force of what's happening. It's just a side effect of existing in a genre where the sexual abuse of women/girls by a man holding them hostage is an incredibly common trope/dynamic.

Did it really never cross your mind that she might be in danger of rape/abuse?
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Sun Sep 22, 2019 6:16 am

Takoma1 wrote:
Sat Sep 21, 2019 5:41 pm
When a man is
holding a woman captive and we are then shown graphic drawings of her vagina, I think that there is an implied sexual threat. Even if it's later revealed to not be the driving force of what's happening. It's just a side effect of existing in a genre where the sexual abuse of women/girls by a man holding them hostage is an incredibly common trope/dynamic.

Did it really never cross your mind that she might be in danger of rape/abuse?
It really didn't, it didn't seem like it was that type of movie or dynamic between the characters at all. If it had gone there, I would have been surprised and very disappointed.
When the notebook comes up, I thought more "what is this about?" than "aha! sexual threat to a captive woman". And I didn't think those were drawings of specifically her vagina, rather drawings of vaginas, nor did I think it was totally clear who made the drawings. As the movie played on I thought it was clearer and clearer that it was about reproduction.
But no, I didn't think there was much of a sexual element to the film at all. In fact, there were a lot of opportunities for Elena to be sexualized and I was pleased again and again that Cosmatos never even allowed the suggestion of unnecessary skin, as I think that would have compromised what he was going for (not that I'm sure he realized whatever he was going for anyway).
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Sun Sep 22, 2019 6:30 am

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Phase IV. Another film I've saved for years in anticipation of what it might be.
Somewhere, some time along the way, I heard that this film was supposed to sort of surreal-minimalist cult-cinema or something so, unfortunately, that's where I set my expectations. Maybe it could be classified as something like that, I dunno, but it definitely wasn't what I had hoped for.

This is ultimately just a simple creature-feature/eco-horror flick with some added alleged cosmic mumbo-jumbo that pretends to be something deep and meaningful when it is really just another mechanism. This is a movie about ants - ants, little, tiny ants - getting intelligent and aggressive and beginning their takeover of the world. It is THEM! with a cosmic angle. Empire Of The Ants but with smaller ants. Basically, something something space cosmic-event something, ants are acting strangely, maybe they'll take over the world or something, but they will definitely eat the livestock and possibly people. And build cool mounds that evoke 2001...
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The problem with normal, tee-niney ants (as opposed to big eco-horror ants) is that they can pretty much get into anywhere. Which they do. Pretty much not a nook or cranny they can't get into and much of the movie is following ants through nooks and crannies so they can mess things up and scare people.
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The rest is pretty much down to a cast of three, with a few moments of a few other people, fretting around a lab, become obsessive and crazy (there's a whole Captain Ahab/Quint from Jaws angle going on), while ants get into shit and like eat wires and stuff.
Ultimately, not the overlooked surreal/minimalist masterpiece I was led to believe.
Not the worst eco-horror I've ever seen either, but neither is it the best. I wouldn't be surprised if someone going in with lower expectations liked it a good bit, what with all it's late-night ant-cam action, but it definitely landed far from the mark I was hoping for.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Jinnistan » Sun Sep 22, 2019 1:45 pm

That ending tho
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Sun Sep 22, 2019 10:29 pm

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Always a fun little romp.
This one is another distillation of everything good about the 80s. Everything they were getting right. Like Repo Man and After Hours.
In this case, it's the story of a brain-surgeon/scientist/rock-star/hero whose experiment to cross through the 8th Dimension spurs a mad, inter-dimensional alien dictator (John Lithgow in one of the most amazing performances of his excellent career) to attempt to escape from Earth and return to rule his planet.
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Meanwhile, to stop him from returning and enslaving their planet, another group of aliens waits in the sky, ready to destroy the Earth rather than allow him to succeed. Accompanied by his merry band of Hong Kong Cavaliers, a group of scientists, adventurers, and musicians (every one of them), including a Jeff Goldblum, a young Clancy Brown (!), and the unbearably sexy Ellen Barkin...
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Buckaroo Banzai sets out to save the world, with unflinching style.
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Just a fun, absurdist little movie that never slips over the line into total silliness as it keeps its eyes on the prize and delivers what it promises, which is fucking strange but kinda awesome.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Death Proof » Sun Sep 22, 2019 11:27 pm

You know, I wanted to like Buckaroo Banzai so much. It seemed like something right up my alley. I've written screenplays about similar mash-up teams of wacky characters.

But man... I just couldn't get through that movie. I don't know what it was. I didn't hate it, but I was so disinterested.

Maybe it's worth another watch. It's been years since I saw it.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Takoma1 » Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:52 am

Death Proof wrote:
Sun Sep 22, 2019 11:27 pm
You know, I wanted to like Buckaroo Banzai so much. It seemed like something right up my alley. I've written screenplays about similar mash-up teams of wacky characters.

But man... I just couldn't get through that movie. I don't know what it was. I didn't hate it, but I was so disinterested.

Maybe it's worth another watch. It's been years since I saw it.
I was also kind of underwhelmed by it. There were moments that the whimsy landed and I vibed with it, but other stretches where I just wasn't engaged.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Death Proof » Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:47 am

Takoma1 wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:52 am
I was also kind of underwhelmed by it. There were moments that the whimsy landed and I vibed with it, but other stretches where I just wasn't engaged.

Image
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:55 am

Death Proof wrote:
Sun Sep 22, 2019 11:27 pm
You know, I wanted to like Buckaroo Banzai so much. It seemed like something right up my alley. I've written screenplays about similar mash-up teams of wacky characters.

But man... I just couldn't get through that movie. I don't know what it was. I didn't hate it, but I was so disinterested.

Maybe it's worth another watch. It's been years since I saw it.
I'll tell ya, I loved it when I was younger, revisited it sometime in my 30s and actually didn't like it, went back and watched it again last night (decidedly no longer in my 30s), and really enjoyed it. I think maybe the script could have been a little snappier late in the film, but I think it mostly works and certainly is a much better movie than it might have been and something unique. I mean, I can't think of another movie with similar gonzo ideas at work. I mean, the fact that Buckaroo Banzai can just call the President of the United States whenever he wants and the President basically does whatever he says. The head of National Security says, "Aliens? 8th Dimension? I'd swear it was the ravings of a lunatic if it wasn't Buckaroo Banzai." And shit like that. Not jokes, just the whole overall joke that there's this guy who performs brain-surgery, travels to the 8th Dimension, and then plays a gig with his band the very same day, before saving the Earth the next. I just love that.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:57 am

Yeah, you guys are lame and don't like fun.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Takoma1 » Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:03 am

Wooley wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:55 am
I mean, I can't think of another movie with similar gonzo ideas at work. I mean, the fact that Buckaroo Banzai can just call the President of the United States whenever he wants and the President basically does whatever he says. The head of National Security says, "Aliens? 8th Dimension? I'd swear it was the ravings of a lunatic if it wasn't Buckaroo Banzai." And shit like that. Not jokes, just the whole overall joke that there's this guy who performs brain-surgery, travels to the 8th Dimension, and then plays a gig with his band the very same day, before saving the Earth the next. I just love that.
The concept is fantastic and there are parts where it works. But there are also parts where it doesn't, and almost seemed low-energy considering the outlandishness of its premise.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:38 am

Takoma1 wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:03 am
The concept is fantastic and there are parts where it works. But there are also parts where it doesn't, and almost seemed low-energy considering the outlandishness of its premise.
I agree that there were some low-energy stretches (fairly short ones), but I feel like that's picking a nit in a movie that came with a story like this and actually didn't fuck it up. If those slower bits didn't exist this movie would be a cult masterpiece. As it is, it's a fun romp to go back and revisit from time to time, with that gonzo performance by Lithgow (it should be too over the top to work, but Lithgow is just that good), and a great example of that very unique 80s way of thinking. I wish the movie was the cult masterpiece it could be, but I'm not just writing it off because it didn't hit a mark that high.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:39 am

Also, Peter Weller was really good (not just in this, although I wouldn't want anyone else to have been Buckaroo), I never understood why we didn't see more of him.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Rock » Mon Sep 23, 2019 3:35 am

Wooley wrote:
Sun Sep 22, 2019 6:30 am
Image
Sounds like Wooley's got...



I wouldn't call it a masterpiece or anything, but I think it's a perfectly neat little sci-fi/horror story elevated a few levels by its tremendous visuals.
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Re: Pre-Horrorthon 2: Wooley's Edge Of October

Post by Wooley » Mon Sep 23, 2019 3:54 am

Rock wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 3:35 am
Sounds like Wooley's got...



I wouldn't call it a masterpiece or anything, but I think it's a perfectly neat little sci-fi/horror story elevated a few levels by its tremendous visuals.
Yeah, like I said, a lot of it was about expectations. I really thought, and I don't know where I got this but it got in my head from somewhere, that this was more like a 2001 (although not on that scale) or maybe, if you'll allow the stretch, something like a Don't Look Now, and that the ants were maybe symbolic or played some key role that made them the focus of posters and such.
It never occurred to me it was a straight-up killer-ant movie that aspired to be better than it was (while admittedly ending up a lot better than it could have been).
But it has inspired me to probably re-watch Empire Of The Ants sometime soon.
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