Thursday, March 29, 2007

"It is Accomplished!"

At long last Bill Barounis of Greece's Famous Onar Films has finished the long and hard work of assembling the TURKISH HORROR DOUBLE BILL!
It's Here!
(Well, not here yet, but you get the idea).
And to remind you what it's all about here's the full specs again:

1) OLULER KONUSMAZ KI (THE DEAD DON'T TALK): Sometimes the dead DO talk
if ONAR gives them a chance, like this God-forgotten 1970 Turkish Gothic
Horror gem. A haunted house in the forest, a ghostly zombie-like
bogeyman, a curse, pretty ladies meeting horrible deaths, endless
macabre boo-ha-ha's, gloomy suffocating atmosphere, Aytekin Akkaya(3 DEV
ADAM'S Captain America), pretty ladies, stolen music from Space
Odyssey(well, Richard Strauss, that is) and giallos, exorcisms and other
goodies guarantee a hair-raising experience. This is another worldwide
premiere, never seen before on any kind of media. Luckily, the master
was found in satisfactory condition so the picture is close to great.

2) ASKA SUSAYANLAR SEKS VE CINAYET (THIRSTY FOR LOVE SEX AND MURDER): If you are thirsty for a genuine giallo with lots of blood, sleaze, mystery
and twists, this one is for you. It could be a Sergio Martino film, like
STRANGE VICE OF MRS WARDH, but it comes straight from Turkey! Here, a
maniac (or two?) with a sharp huge razor is after pretty girls. A woman
is suffering a youth trauma and is haunted by the nightmare of her past.
The only remaining master was found in good condition so the picture is
not great but good enough for a Turkish 70's film.

Country: Turkey

Year: 1: 1970, 2: 1972

Director: 1: Yavuz Yalinkilic, 2: Mehmet Aslan

Actors: 1: Aytekin Akkaya, Dogan Tamer, Giray Alpan

2: Yildirim Gencer, Kadir Inanir, Meral Zeren, Eva Bender


1200 numbered copies

Turkish audio

English & Greek subtitles

B/W (1), Colour (2), 4:3, DVD9

3 Interviews with AYTEKIN AKKAYA , METIN DEMIRHAN (horror director and
author of the cult book TURKISH FANTASTIC CINEMA) and GIOVANNI
SCOGNAMILLO, actor and co-author of above book. Turkish audio with
English subs.


Filmographies OF DIRECTORS

Biographies OF DIRECTORS


This is a real winner folks, I've seen ASKA SUSAYANLAR SEKS VE CINAYET and it is absolutely incredible. And OLULER KONUSMAZ KI is super, super obscure, and is here making it's Worldwide Home Video Premiere. Famed for it's atmosphere and utter irrationality, this one's been high on our "Must-See" list for quite some time.

This is what it's all about for us here at Worldweird Cinema, rare, odd and poverty-ridden celluloid treasures, available on nice affordable Digital Video Discs.
Highest Recomendation Possible! Make sure you pick this one up soon. You can grab directly from the source here and here.


BY THE END OF APRIL (we hope)!

An arty-horror Turkish film from the early 1990s that ought to be an interesting change of pace. The description in Tombs' MONDO MACABRO book make it sound rather mouthwatering, describing it as a "mix (of) East-West politics, fundamentalism, vampire mythology, and stucturalist discourse" and ramarking that it "comes across as an Argento script directed by (Alain) Robbe Grillet".
Sounds weird. But not in the usual Turkish weird way. We are very much looking forward to that one as well, it's slated for the end of April at or around the same time as the SUPERMAN DVD.

(NOTE this is NOT the cover art for the Onar DVD, just an old DVD cover which was the only image connected with the film that I could find, still looks pretty cool, though.)

Keep independent DVD boutiques alive! Buy copies for yourself and your friends!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Directed by Yang Chuan
Hong Kong; 1983

Why would anybody buy an oversized novelty matchstick? What use could it possibly serve?
I can only imagine that it might be an impulse buy while shopping at Spencer gifts or some other random specialty store that litter the suburban malls of America. While browsing through a varied assortment of black lights and incense burners shaped liked dragons, you stumble upon it and think, "Man, I could really use a knee high plastic novelty matchstick."
Don't do it! Avoid the impulse and spend your money on something useful like flowers for your mom or long term life insurance. Or get yourself a copy of Seeding of a Ghost and educate yourself to the many hazards of owning an immense matchstick. For instance, when your wife becomes possessed by the soul of your mistress who you abandoned in the middle of nowhere only to be raped and killed by two thugs, she is going to ram that oversized conversation piece up your ass. Repeatedly.

Chau (Phillip Ko) is having a rough couple of days. First he accidentally hits a dirty old sorcerer with his taxi, who was attempting to make a hasty retreat after having just robbed a grave of it's occupant. Chau hops out to assess the damages only to find the old mystic sitting dirty in the back seat of his cab.
If you hit a deer with your car you may have several car repair costs and your auto premiums will probably go up. Turns out, if you hit a Taoist priest the fates all get together to fuck you over & make your life a living hell.

Sure enough, mere hours after the chance encounter with the priest, Chau's new bride gets a wondering eye. While dealing cards at her day job her sights set in on the wealthy, young & married Anthony Fang (Norman Chu). Fang looks like he just stepped out of JC Penny ad from 1982, which drives Chau's wife Irene mad with passion. After a few discreet rendezvous', the couple become more brazen with their PDA (Public Display of Adultery), and are almost caught in the act by both of their spouses while canoodling throughout Hong Kong. There seems to be no slowing down the couples affection for each other, that is until Irene decides that they should both leave their spouses and walk down the isle themselves.

Anthony is not about to ruin an already good thing & after a heated argument, abandons Irene in the middle of the night on the side of the road to fend for herself. A rather conveniently located telephone booth allows her to call Chau's dispatch & have him paged to come pick her up. Unfortunately the fates have already lined up a chance encounter with a couple of young hooligans.

Before Chau can show up, the two thugs chase Irene into a near by deserted building, where after a brief struggle, she is beaten, raped and accidentally pushed off the roof of the building to her death. Arriving two seconds too late, Chau find his wife's body and quickly calls the authorities. But when local police officials fail to bring justice to the men who raped and murdered his wife & to the adulterer whose actions put her in a harms way, Chau seeks out the sorcerer to enact his revenge.

In order for the necromancer to help Chau, he must first dig up & retrieve his wife's body. Her corpse, which has decomposed at a rapid rate, will also require the blood & life force of her grieving husband in order to get the bad juju flowing.
Once Irene's corpse starts to twitch and bubble over with the black arts, quick work is made of the two thugs who raped and killed her. And Anthony & his wife are far from forgotten, as Irene's vengeful spirit begins poking her head around in their day to day affairs.

Seeding of a Ghost takes the popular exploitation elements that one expects from a Shaw Brothers pictures of the early 80's - ample nudity, fist fights, and battling monks - and then steps in up a notch with strong doses of gross and violent black magic revenge. There are several brilliantly disgusting and violent scenes throughout the last half of the picture. You get bug/worm barfing with a side of brain eating. One of the thugs spine pops itself right out of his back during intercourse. And then there is the novelty knick knack up the ass crack that I mentioned earlier.

One of the craziest scenes involves Irene's possessed corpse attempt to impregnate herself with the seed of the young man who raped her. The wild special effect of the corpse floating several feet above the ground while the spirit of the young delinquent attempts to get it on, is an interesting visual to say the least. Watching it is bound to make one contemplate the advantages of sex in a weightless environment. That is if you can contain the vomit rising in you throat. With out the chains of gravity to hold him down, the spirit of the young man climes all over Irene's body like a lizard on a brick house trying to find the warmest spot on a summer day.

The Zero G frolic proves fruitful and both Irene and Anthony's wife find themselves with child. I would hate to ruin the ending for those who have yet to have the pleasure of seeing Seeding, but I will say that the final minutes reminded me of cross between Luigi Cozzi's Contamination (1980) & Douglas McKeown's The Deadly Spawn (1983).

Seeding of a Ghost is definitely weird. Maybe not The Boxer's Omen weird, but it's definitely an eccentric and entertaining slice of exploitation sleaze served up on a hot plate by the bothers Shaw.

Print provided by Shocking Videos.

Review by The Undead Film Critic!

Thursday, March 22, 2007


So our friend Miltos, who is a good pal, and fellow countryman, of Bill from Onar films has reported at his forum that the TURKISH HORROR DOUBLE FEATURE is definately, finally, most certainly on its way to us at the end of this very month.
And much merryment was hear 'round the valley!
Our review will be posted as soon after we get our grubby paws on it as we can manage.

Monday, March 19, 2007

WHO CAN KILL A CHILD? Dark Sky, that's who!

Out on June 26th from Dark Sky Films, Narciso Ibáñez Serrador's legendary Spanish chiller. One of our most anticipated releases of the year.

Who can contemplate the unimaginable?
Who can face the unthinkable?

On a vacation away from their family, Tom (Lewis Fiander, of DR. JEKYLL & SISTER HYDE) and his pregnant wife Evelyn (FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD’s Prunella Ransome) sail to an island off the coast of Spain that seems deserted… until its children emerge from the shadows with the blood of their parents on their hands… and hatred in their hearts for every adult.

Unflinchingly horrific and unapologetically downbeat, Narciso Ibáñez Serrador’s WHO CAN KILL A CHILD? was heavily censored for its American release in 1976 as ISLAND OF THE DAMNED. Dark Sky Films is proud to present the complete film, uncut and uncensored, for its long overdue American DVD debut.

More details when they emerge, we promise.
Info gleaned from Latarnia. Thanks Mirek!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Criterion Melts your Mind with Eastern European Surrealist Sexfilms!!!

Criterion have just updated their website and included among the usual somewhat boring art-house stuff are two of Yugoslav director Dusan Makavejev's wild sexually and politically provacative surrealist films WR: MYSTERIES OF THE ORGANISM and SWEET MOVIE.
We're really looking forward to these!
Here's the insane info:


Pushing his themes of sexual liberation to their boiling point, Yugoslavian art-house provocateur Dusan Makavejev followed his international sensation WR: Mysteries of the Organism with this full-throated shriek in the face of bourgeois complacency and movie-watching. Sweet Movie tackles the limits of personal and political freedom with kaleidoscopic feverishness, shuttling viewers from a gynecological beauty pageant to a grotesque food orgy with scatological, taboo-shattering glee. With its lewd abandon and sketch-comedy perversity, Sweet Movie became both a cult staple and exemplar of the envelope pushing of 1970s cinema.


*New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by director Dusan Makavejev

*New video interview with Makavejev

*New interview with Balkan film scholar Dina Iordanova

*Actress Anna Prucnal sings a song featured in the film

*New and improved English subtitle translation


What does the energy harnessed through orgasm have to do with the state of communist Yugoslavia circa 1971? Only counterculture filmmaker extraordinaire Dusan Makavejev has the answers (or the questions). His surreal documentary-fiction collision WR: Mysteries of the Organism, which begins as an investigation of the life and work of controversial psychologist and philosopher Wilhelm Reich, then explodes into a freeform narrative of a beautiful young Slavic girl's sexual liberation. Banned in the director's former homeland, WR is both whimsical and bold in its intersection of politics and sexuality.


*New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by director Dusan Makavejev

*Audio commentary assembled from Raymond Durgnat's 1999 book on the film

*Hole in the Soul, Makavejev's 1994 tragicomic autobiographical short film, originally made for the BBC

*New video interview with Makavejev

*New and improved English subtitle translation

*PLUS: A new essay by critic Jonathan Rosenbaum

What with the Jodorowsky discs and Fantoma Films giving Kenneth Anger's work the deluxe DVD treatment, 2007 is shaping up to be a banner year for world surrealist film!
Join the revolution!
The Worldweird revolution!!

Thursday, March 15, 2007


Directed by Engin Temizer
Turkey; 1979

This is an ultra-sleazy softcore shocker from Turkey. Of course it’s totally incomprehensible. No subs, but they wouldn’t have helped anyway. Whole chunks of the movie seem to be missing and the situations depicted are unlikely, unbelievable and ultimately utterly mind-melting. Like other weird late 70s-early 80s Turkish skin flix I’ve seen, this movie featured no credits, no title sequence, it just flies straight into the depravity and before you know it, it’s all over. Just like that. It just stops. “SON” (Turkish for “FIN”). Weird.

The “plot” (not that it matters) is *whew* yet another “rape-revenge” story. For some reason I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE must have made a huge impact on the third world. The importance of female honor in countries like Turkey, Egypt and India must have something to do with the resonance of this particular stock story. Or maybe, like here and in Europe, it’s just an excuse for nudity, sleaze and violence – tried and true methods of putting butts in theater seats. It’s probably something somewhere in-between.

Anyway, a pretty girl hitch-hikes and is picked up by three slobbering criminal types, who of course rape her in brutal and crude fashion as stolen Italian soundtrack music (including Ennio Morricone’s classic score for BIRD WITH THE CRYSTAL PLUMAGE) blares indiscriminately in the background. They have their way and then split. She wanders to a nearby villa and is nursed back to health by a handsome bachelor. She must have amnesia because she doesn’t have the dude take her home, where her mother and brother (and his hot wife) worry in broad strokes. For some reason the criminals seemingly by accident come to stay in the bachelor villa, and well, you can guess what eventually happens. It doesn’t end up well.

The astonishing thing about this movie is the long, nearly hardcore sex scenes which take up about a third of the film’s running time. Mostly between the victim and her hero (although his thrusts into her bring back unseemly visions of her rape, but strangely she doesn’t seem to mind all that much), although the girl’s brother and his wife deal with the grief of his sister’s disappearance but humping away in fairly hot fashion. More than likely some versions of this movie probably featured hardcore inserts, but the sex scenes themselves seem to have been shot originally as softcore. At one point a busty Turkish babe is writhing on top of her man and the camera peeks from behind at her womanly bits and there’s nothing going in, if ya know what I mean. So yeah. Softcore. But like I said, fairly hot.

Not much really going on in this one. But it’s a weird enough diversion for an afternoon. And it’s always good to have a few more totally obscure foreign sex films under your belt. It will make you a better and more interesting person in the end.
Or just egg on your already growing out-of-control depravity.

Print provided by Electric Larvae.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

More Severin Smut!!

Severin Films are ever-unrelenting in their mission to bathe us in beautiful Euro-smut cinema. They have just announced a couple of new things that sound pretty fookin' steamy.
Including one by one of our favorite all time Directors of Movies.
First off, a movie we've never heard of before called LAURE:

Her tantalizing memoir shocked the world. Its infamous film adaptation changed X-rated cinema forever. Now for the first time, Emmanuelle Arsan - the real EMMANUELLE - brings her own lush vision of total sexual abandon to the screen as writer, director and co-star of this rarely seen erotic classic.

The succulent Annie Belle (of HOUSE ON THE EDGE OF THE PARK and BLACK EMMANUELLE, WHITE EMMANUELLE fame) stars as Laure, a free-spirited young woman whose bold philosophy of pleasure enflames the passions of every man and woman she encounters in the steamy city of Manila. But when she's invited to join a deep jungle expedition with a hunky filmmaker (Al Cliver of ZOMBIE and THE BEYOND) and a beautiful anthropologist (Arsan), Laure discovers that no sexual hunger can ever be truly forbidden. Can one woman's insatiable lust create a new dimension of love, or will her complete carnal surrender to a strange native tribe lead to the most shocking act of all?

Colour / 1.77:1 / 16x9 / 91 mins / Not Rated / $29.95 / Reg 0 (NTSC) / DVD 5
Dolby Digital Mono
UPC 891635001230 / Item SEV1117

Director: Emmanuelle Arsan

Starring: Al Cliver [Pier Luigi Conti], Orso Maria Guerrini, Annie Belle [Annie Brilland]...

Aka: Forever Emmanuelle

# Theatrical Trailer
# Emmanuelle Revealed: Interview with Producer Ovidio Assonitis
# Audio interview with star Annie Belle
# Interview with actor Al Cliver

We love obscure exploitation cinema. Even more if it's totally HOT!
So yeah that's cool. But how about a sexy political satire directed by the man who gave you NEW YORK RIPPER and MURDER ROCK?


aka: All'onorevele piacciono le donne / The Senator Likes Women
Dir. Lucio Fulci
Stars Lando Buzzanca, Laura Antonelli, Lionel Stander, Agostina Belli.

No specs on this one, but if it's Fulci, it's pre-sold to us. Our fave all-time Italian director. You can shove yer Argentos and yer Bavas back up yer ass!
(Actually we really love those guys too, so no threatening comments please).

Viva la Severin!

HELL'S GROUND clip surfaces!!

From the upcoming Mondo Macabro-produced Pakistani zombie flick directed by film critic and historian Omar Khan.
We think it looks pretty creepy.
Have a look for yourself:

You can "Friend" the movie at myspace here.

Friday, March 09, 2007


aka FIST OF Helali
Directed by Ibrahim Afeefi
Story by Basyouni Othman
Egypt; 1991
Amal Ibrahim
Hamdi Al Wazeer
Shareef Abdul Munam
Husni Abdul Al Jaleel
Kamal Abu Rayyah
Naheed Sameer
Deya Al Merchani
Seham Abdullah
Mutawe Owees
Seham Zaki
Jala Fahmi
Nasr Seif
Nabeel Al Hawari

Like most Egyptian movies I’ve seen (which isn’t many), KABDEH HELALI alternates between hallucinatory weirdness, goofy action and turgid melodrama with the greatest of unease. Violence, suggestions of sex, cartoonish villains, lots of victimized women weeping and wailing and the occasional mystical vision all feature prominently in this flick, which is primarily a martial-arts revenge number, but gets dragged down by a heap of social drama gravitas. Like South Asian cinema, the films of Egypt mostly follow a ‘masala’ approach, sprinkling a little bit of everything to make sure all bases are covered once the movies moved out into the wider Arabic-speaking audience. But unlike Indian or Pakistani films or even their closer relations in Turkey, most Egyptian cinema lacks the wild, untamed vitality which makes those countries films of interest to western cult-film fans. But there are wayward elements which will spin your head and even occasionally make roar with unbelieving laughter, if you stay with it and give in to the offbeat and very foreign charms therein.

From what I can tell of the plot (no subtitles as per usual here at Worldweird), the story involves a trio of lowlife crooks who forcibly take a brief-case full of cash from a somewhat-sexy/somewhat-chunky chick who has withdrawn it for reasons obscure to me since I don’t speak Arabic. Her brother, a tourist guide, attempts revenge on the neer-do-wells but gets an hysterical and embarrassing beatdown from the Head Crook. All attempts to bring him to justice fail miserably and so he and his scummy chums succeed in their diabolical plans to use the stolen life savings (one assumes) to open their own glitzerific disco (which sports a dome structure seemingly in mockery of the usual architecture of mosques, the evil bastards), pumping out such western secular jams such as “Smooth Criminal” and “Oops! Upside Your Head!” All very rotten indeed.

But their comeuppance is coming, you better believe. Good always triumphs in Third World cinema (remember that the spectacular bummer of an ending to the masterful Eurowestern THE GREAT SILENCE was changed for its release in the then lucrative Moslem market) and so it happens that our hero, the tour guide, while guiding tourists round the Great Pyramids and The Sphinx receives a cosmic vision of his training in the martial arts against a Halloween masked demon-ninja, and is given a new impetus to get him some good ole fashioned vengeance. Which, Allah bless him, he does, in spectacular fashion. The final showdown, taking place both in the devilish disco (which our hero literally tears down the walls of) and at the comfy looking beach resort HQ of Chief Baddie, is pretty fuckin’ awesome. The kung fu is surprisingly well accomplished, a bit better than scenes from similar Turkish or Hindi films of around the same period, although it maybe drags on a bit long. But there’s a smashing scene where our hero faces off in a disco-fu challenge that you’ve just gotta see. It’s a real hoot. In the end, the good guys triumph, the bad guys are beaten up and carted off to jail and that’s that. If your looking for complex motivations or ambivalent situations, you’re in the wrong country, bub.

I really enjoyed this peculiar little action time-waster. It’s better than THIRSTY FOR RED BLOOD but nowhere near in the league of WOLVES DON’T EAT MEAT (more on that one later) as far as Egyptian movies I've seen go. Check out some of the more outré DVDr providers for this one, as I highly doubt it’ll ever warrant the decked-out subtitled, restored DVD presentation we would like to see for even the most minor of cult film epics. I doubt Egypt is the “new Turkey” as far as excavations for exploitation oddities are concerned, but they are worthy of being noticed and taken heed of, if for anthropological reasons only. But if you’ve got the right state of mind (I found a bottle of wine helped considerably in this), these obscure films can be found to be quite entertaining little weirdo morsels in their own right.

Anyone able to provide biographical or production info pertaining to this movie, please contat me at jaredaunerATyahooDOTcom. Thank you.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Onar Films' Tragedies and Triumphs!!

Our good pal Bill from the Greek-based Onar Films has been having a "hell" of a time getting his TURKISH HORROR DOUBLE FEATURE off the ground these last few months, the end is in sight, but we still don't know when it will arrive. Troubles seem to just keep on rolling for this poor soul. Pray for him and for the DVD, believe me, when it comes out it will have been worth all the trouble. Keep checking his website and ours for news on its impeding arrival.
But on the good news side of things, he's also very close to the release of the TURKISH SUPERMAN DOUBLE FEATURE! And he's just posted the cover and specs for this awesome disc!
Which I now happily share with you, my dear (if dwindling) readership:



The most talked-about cult film of all times comes from Turkey! Defying criticism, ignoring “obstacles” and aiming at the heart it will disarm you willy- nilly! The print found, was not perfect of course but the final result is super- good compared to the usual bootlegs.


A super- obscure 1973 Turkish superhero giant, with a… Super-Bat-Man so to speak! Also featuring a wheelchaired transvestite super- villain, Fu Manchu, Bikini leathal babes plus more! The master was found in very good condition for a Turkish film!

Country: Turkey
Year: 1: 1979, 2: 1973
Director: 1: Kunt Tulgar, 2: Tunc Basaran
Actors: 1: Tayfun Demir, Yildirim Gencer, Gungor Bayrak
2: Huseyin Zan, Altan Gunbay, Kayhan Yildizoglu


1200 numbered copies

Turkish audio, Dolby Stereo

English & Greek subtitles

Colour (1), B/W (2), 4:3

Interview (Kunt Tulgar)


Bios, Filmos


Monday, March 05, 2007

Worldweird, USA!!

Breaking our template here somewhat, we thought it nonetheless important to pass on some info concerning a new forthcoming tome entitled NIGHTMARE USA, written by horror film scholar Stephen Thrower and coming soon from the terrific FAB Press in the UK.
It covers the wonderously weird world of American horror and exploitation films from the 1970s on into the early 80s, and host hundreds of reviews and dozens of interviews pertaining to these astonishing trash obscurities. We (or I, Jared, really) have just pre-ordered our own signed, numbered and limited edition hardcover copy and we would suggest you do the same. Thrower is an extremely important figure in the current on-going critical re-appraisal of world exploitation film, having made his name covering Eurohorror in his seminal mag EYEBALL and his landmark study of legendary Italian director Lucio Fulci, BEYOND TERROR, and here turns his sights onto a murky realm of bizarro cinema that has as of yet hardly been dipped into in any serious, studious manner.
We can't fucking wait.
From the FAB website, here's the juicy FYI:

Running to 528 large-format pages, Nightmare USA is a veritable encyclopedia of exploitation - it's literally the year's biggest film book! - and FAB Press customers have the rare opportunity to purchase a very special exclusive edition. Pre-order this book now if you want to own the strictly limited, individually signed and numbered collectors edition. The Nightmare USA Signature Edition, is available exclusively from FAB Press, and is only available to customers who pre-order this book direct from us. This collectors item absolutely cannot be purchased anywhere else, and what's more, the very day that we have stock on hand and the blue 'pre-order' button switches over to a red 'add to cart' button will mark the point at which it will be impossible to ever again order the signature edition of this monumental film book. We have produced limited editions of FAB Press books in the past, and we have strictly observed our promise to never re-release such editions again, in order to ensure that our customers' investments are safe. Check out the outrageous prices people are now charging for the limited first editions of books like Beyond Terror, or AntiCristo, to see what a sound investment a limited edition FAB Press book is on the collectors market. Order your copy of Nightmare, USA today to make sure you secure a copy!

A kaleidoscopic journey through the heyday of Horror and Exploitation Cinema in America!

From Quentin Tarantino (Kill Bill) to Eli Roth (Hostel), the young guns of modern Hollywood just can't get enough of that exploitation film high. That's because, between 1970 and 1985, American Exploitation movies went berserk. With censorship relaxed, and the gate to excess wide open, horror - the Exploitation genre par excellence - offered a vibrant alternative to the mainstream of American cinema. Luridly titled wonders like The Headless Eyes, Scream Bloody Murder and Hitch Hike to Hell were everywhere, from the drive-ins of Texas to the grindhouses of New York, touting a combination of mind-bruising violence, weird sex and drug-soaked delirium. Massively popular around the world, American exploitation movies added immensely to the richness of the nation's cinema, but they have remained persona non grata in most serious studies of American film. Until now...

Built on five years of research, Nightmare USA explores the development of America's subterranean horror film industry, spotlighting some of the wildest films imaginable from an era unchecked by censorship or 'good taste.' Ranging from cult favourites like I Drink Your Blood to stylish mind-benders like Messiah of Evil and ultra-violent shockers like Don't Go in the House, Nightmare, USA goes where no other in-depth study has gone before, revealing the fascinating true stories behind classics and obscurities alike. Stephen Thrower, author of Beyond Terror, the definitive book on Italian gore maestro Lucio Fulci, has explored the attics and cellars of American cinema, delved beneath the floorboards, peered between the walls, searching for the strangest, most exotic cine-lifeforms... Nightmare USA is the reader's guide to what lies beyond the mainstream of American horror, dispelling the shadows to meet the men and women behind fifteen years of screen terror: the Exploitation Independents!

This massive overview of the Horror genre's development through the 1970s and 1980s features:

* In-depth EXCLUSIVE interviews with twenty-five cult filmmakers, many of whom are discussing their work for the first time ever in print, including David Durston (I Drink Your Blood), Robert Endelson (Fight for Your Life), Frederick Friedel (Axe), Don Jones (Schoolgirls in Chains); and Joseph Ellison (Don't Go in the House).

* Over 175 individual films reviewed, with full cast and crew credits compiled by world-renowned cinema archivist Julian Grainger.

* Vast quantities of previously unpublished stills, posters, press-books, plus behind-the-scenes photographs from the filmmakers' own collections.


Section One: The Exploitation Independents
A 25,000 word essay charting the rise of Exploitation Horror: from Herschell Gordon Lewis and George Romero to the Slasher phenomenon of the 1980s

Section Two: Essays on Films and Filmmakers
Dirty Games in Hollywood - the career of James Bryan (Don't Go in the Woods)
The Frozen Scream Is a Clean Machine - Renee Harmon (Frozen Scream)
The Fiend from Prime-Time - John Peyser on The Centerfold Girls
Carolina on My Mind - the films of Frederick Friedel (Axe, Kidnapped Coed)
It Came from New Jersey! - Douglas McKeown on The Deadly Spawn
Let's Play Nasty - the films of Don Jones (Schoolgirls in Chains, The Love Butcher, The Forest)
Louisiana Screamin' - James L. Wilson on Screams of a Winter Night
Satan Was an Acid-Head! - the films of David Durston (I Drink Your Blood, Stigma)
Don't Make Me Do Anything Bad, Mother... - Joseph Ellison on Dont Go in the House
If You Go Down in the Caves Today - Mark Sawicki on The Strangeness
The Vigilante of 42nd Street - Robert Endelson on Fight for Your Life
The Living Dead at the All-Night Mall - Willard Huyck on Messiah of Evil
Hollywood After Dark - the films of John Hayes (Grave of the Vampire, Dream No Evil, Garden of the Dead)
What Really Happened to Tony Vorno's Victims? - Daniel DiSomma on Victims
If At First You Don't Succeed... - the films of Tony Malanowski (Night of Horror, Curse of the Screaming Dead)
Punished By the Sun - Marc B. Ray on Scream Bloody Murder
Growing Pains - John Ballard on Friday the 13th: The Orphan
Blood Relations - the films of Irv & Wayne Berwick (Hitch Hike to Hell, Microwave Massacre)
Mind Before Matter - Robert Allen Schnitzer on The Premonition
Spawn of Venice Beach - Stephen Traxler on Slithis
Beyond the Black Room - the films of Norman Thaddeus Vane (The Black Room, The Horror Star)
Robert Voskanian & Robert Dadashian - Raising The Child
Who's the Ghostest with the Mostest? - the films of Fredric Hobbs (Alabama's Ghost, Godmonster of Indian Flats)
To Sleep, Perchance to Scream - George Barry on Death Bed: The Bed That Eats
--- supplemented in the text by a further twenty interviews with cast and crew members.

Section Three: Reviews
Reviews of a further 120 films, with additional notes and commentaries on the reviews by Roger Watkins (director: Last House on Dead End Street), Walter Dallenbach (writer: Psychopath), Jeremy Hoenack (director: The Dark Ride), Christopher Speeth (director: Malatesta's Carnival of Blood), John Wintergate (director: BoardingHouse), Wayne Bell (composer: Death Trap), Michael Gornick (cinematographer: Martin), Don Leifert (star: Fiend)

Incredible! And even further, FAB is throwing a extravagant bash to unveil this essential volume featuring 5 of the most bizarre of the Ameritrash cinema covered therein.
The lowdown, for you lucky bastards who make your home in the UK:


Nightmare USA Film Festival: Ten Hours of Grindhouse Movie Mayhem! is a combined all-day film festival and book launch for the brand new FAB Press book: Nightmare, USA!

The Location:
Riverside Studios, Hammersmith, London
The Time:
5 May 2007, from 12 noon till 11 p.m.
(first film starts at 1 p.m. sharp)
The Tickets:
Tickets are priced at £25 per person, and are available to over-18s only on a strictly first-come-first-served basis.
The Films...

DON'T GO IN THE HOUSE (Joseph Ellison, 1979)
Don't Go in the House is Psycho Redux for the video nasty generation... with flame-throwers!
Choice dialogue excerpt:
The voices inside Donny's head: 'She was evil... Now you can do any thing you want to do. You're free!'
Donny: 'Can I play my music loud?'
Trivia of note:
Full uncut 35mm print of this notorious horror movie that was banned as a 'video nasty' in the 1980s. Though most of the so-called 'nasties' are tame in comparsion to current ultra-violent horrors such as Hostel and Saw, this film's opening scenes still have the power to shock jaded modern audiences.

PIGS (aka Blood Pen) (Marc Lawrence, 1972)
Pigs is a love story between a psychotic teenage girl and a grave-robbing pig-farmer.
Choice dialogue excerpt:
Miss Macy: 'They're not pigs you know... they're dead people. He feeds those pigs dead people, and then he eats the pigs!'
Sheriff Cole: 'I don't think there's a law against turning dead people into pigs.'
Trivia of note:
UK Theatrical Premiere! The 35mm print we will be showing is actually Blood Pen - an alternative version of the film, with a completely unique, specially-shot, opening sequence not available on any home video format!

VICTIMS (Daniel DiSomma, 1977)
Paulie is coming apart; his every encounter with the opposite sex costs another woman her life, while stirring up memories of his prostitute mother, her brutal pimp, and the sexually abusive hooker who molested him as a child...
Choice dialogue excerpt:
Paulie: 'I guess I went a little ape...'
Hooker: 'A little? You came on like you were tearing up the forest!'
Trivia of note:
UK Theatrical Premiere! Almost impossible to see since its extremely limited early-80s video release, this criminally-neglected gem of terrifying psychological horror will be receiving quite probably its only ever UK screening courtesy of director Daniel Di Somma's personal archive print of the film. Note: Subject to confirmation

BLOODY BROTHERS (Fred Friedel, 2003)
Psycho twins separated at birth embark on separate, simultaneous, violent sprees across the Connecticut landscape, all the while closing the distance between each other, and their inevitable respective fates.
Choice dialogue excerpt:
Sandra: 'No... you don't understand. I'm being kidnapped!'
Rapist: 'Well, isn't that a touching story?'
Trivia of note:
WORLD PREMIERE! Put together from the highlights of director Fred Friedel's classics Axe and Date with a Kidnapper, this is full-tilt exploitation filmmaking with no holds barred, and all the fat trimmed from its bones. A relentless, breathless chase through the American rural landscape to find at its conclusion, inevitably, the country's heart of darkness.

BOARDINGHOUSE (John Wintergate, 1982)
A Lothario with psychic powers rents out rooms in his rambling house to pretty college girls, but his plans for a harem are undone by a malevolent force residing within.
Choice dialogue excerpt:
'I cut myself with the apple... er, the knife.'
Trivia of note:
UK Theatrical Premiere! Probably the weirdest American horror film of the '80s (and that's really saying something!), this is filmmaking from another dimension that will leave jaws agape in stunned admiration and bemused befuddlement. We strongly recommend that you enter this screening drunk or stoned, or both, for maximum amazement...

Whew! Can you take that much weirdness, ye English Dogs?
To cap this astonishing anouncement, here's a few trailers we've dug up on The Youtube for some of the crazed cinema the book and festival go on about.
Dig these crazy visuals, cats!
Oh, and more thing:






Thursday, March 01, 2007

Movie Review: LE MOINE

Directed by Ado Kyrou
France/Italy/West Germany; 1972

Ado Kyrou’s film of Matthew Lewis’ gothic classic THE MONK is genuinely odd and confrontational movie, full of sex, violence, black magic and anti-clerical intent. Decried by some as being dull and rather flatly filmed, I would have to disagree, at least somewhat, as I found it to be a fascinating slow-burn of a chiller, luring you into a sense of the usual period drama ease before dropping bombs of surrealism and insanity into your brain. It benefits greatly from a wonderful lead performance from the terrific Italian actor Franco Nero, here dubbing his own voice as usual for his work during this period, who lends the film a terrific and realistic sense of human weight and tragedy to counterbalance the odd fantastic elements. It’s a dark and weird film, sleazy and dreamy, but with a dramatic focus and earthiness that catches you off-guard. This allows the films to be daringly and almost subliminally dangerous, it’ll torch you with it’s sleaze before you realize it’s even that kind of movie.

The story concerns a frankly rather pompous clergy-man (Nero) who is manipulated by a decadent pedophiliac nobleman (an excellent and well-cast Nicol Williamson) and his gorgeous henchwoman into a fury of violent lusts. Nero, fuelled by an illicit relationship with the aforementioned henchwoman posing as a male monk, soon finds himself trapped by his animalistic lusts into an obsession with a beautiful, young orphan and willing to descend into murder and sorcery to achieve his goal of seduction. With a script by cinema’s premier ugly surrealist Luis Bunuel, LE MOINE has all the anti-catholic clergy elements one would suspect out of a version of this torrid romance by the great director. Kyrou, a major figure in surrealism himself and, as a film critic, an important influence on the development of the erotic horror film in Europe during the 1960s and 70s directs the movie with a subtle and underwhelming mise-en-scene, which allows the fantastic and satiric elements to bloom in startling and unusual ways. Full of cheap special effects, startaling (and perhaps illegal) nudity and outright blasphemy, LE MOINE is a movie only a staunch conservative Catholic or an unimaginative cineaste could dislike. It’s never less than hypnotic even when it stumbles across the sometimes uninspired visuals. And it waits to catch you unaware with its weird and uncanny qualities, which blend with its offhand and deliberate blasphemies to create, if not a masterpiece, then certainly a truly unique film experience, not quite like anything else made during this time.

If you can track down the Spanish DVD, which features the preferred English language dub, check it out. It’s worth the time. As stated before Kyrou was a big influence on Eurohorror, particularly on the career of the gloriously haphazard French auteur Jean Rollin. So if nothing else, this film bears an historic importance even if it disagrees with you cinematically. I think it’s something fairly special on its own, though. And worthy of a first class DVD restoration. It’d be perfect for one of Mondo Macabro’s euro-reissues. How ‘bout it, Pete and Andy? I for one would snap it up in an instance.

Available for rent at Scarecrow Video!