Thursday, June 17, 2010
Lamberto Bava - I am a fan!
Hello. My name is Rod and I’m a Film-Trash-o-holic. I’ve loved trash films for years and occasionally overindulged in them for short spans of time but I must now admit to my addiction. I can no longer fight my desire to watch Trash Films almost every day. I feel the need to both see and obtain more Trash Films as often as possible. I’ve been aware of this obsession for years now but I always felt it was a controllable interest and probably even a harmless ‘hobby’. Looking back it’s easy to see the signs. A love of horror, science fiction and adventure movies turned into an interest in strange cinema of all types. Different varieties of cult movies became fresh meals in which to sample and take delight. Japanese, Hong Kong, Philippine, Canadian, Brazilian or Australian movies washed over me in blaze of color and sound as I strove to absorb all I could. “Give me more!” I screamed. I wanted to see it all. A taste of this and a drink of that! A seven course meal of samurai, blood beasts, noble assassins, mad torturers, exploding heads, top hat wearing lunatics and ex-cops searching for a tank of gas topped with a dessert of violent comeuppance to make it all feel right. I was high on film and the high was amazing!
I should have suspected something was going to be different when I dug deeply into the world of European Trash though. All the signs were there that this was not going to be like the others. This was to be no one night stand- no weekend fling. This meant something. This spoke to me in a way no other cinema had ever spoken to me before. It understood me. Mario Bava sucked me in and Dario Argento held me. Antonio Margheritti surprised me and Sergio Martino shocked me. Naschy thrilled me and Ossorio scared me. Rollin turned me on and Fulci turned my stomach. Jess Franco frustrated me and Joe D’Amato confused me. And in each case I wanted more. Much more. I wanted to see everything these men and dozens more had ever made in every genre. Thrillers, sword & sandal epics, westerns, sci-fi stories, post-apocalyptic tales, police procedurals, horror movies, ghost movies – I wanted to see it all! And I’ve been happy seeking out and seeing all these movies now numbering well into the hundreds. Until today. Today I realized I had finally gone too far in my search for EuroTrash thrills when I realized I was about to dive headlong into the television work of Lamberto Bava. I was checking out my DVD of what is by all accounts a terrible made-for-TV film called DINNER WITH A VAMPIRE and suddenly realized I was looking forward to seeing it. And then I realized that a couple of days ago I was made extremely happy by finding on Amazon a $5 copy of Lamberto’s pirate mini-series. Indeed, it was on its way to me at that very moment. And I was hard on the track of his fantasy series Fantaghirò in English. What the hell has happened to me? Had I gone crazy? Had the cheese slipped off my cracker?
No. Luckily, I wasn’t insane. I had simply been infected with a more hardcore version of my Euro-Trash movie addiction. Having nearly exhausted the ‘regular’ strains of entertainment this fine vein of cinema gold can offer I was ready for more esoteric and modern offshoots. Bring it on! Of course I know this new overpowering lust is my own fault but if I were the blame laying type my shaky finger would point to one man – David Zuzelo. His enthusiasm for Lamberto Bava’s films is second to none and his adventures in tracking down and viewing them all has been both entertaining and infecting. I’ve thought highly of Bava’s fine 1980s horror movies such as DEMONS, DEMONS 2, MACABRE and DELIRIUM for a long time but my recent exposure to BLASTFIGHTER has clearly caused a switch to flip and I am a full fledged fanatic.
So bring on the pirates, the wizards and whatever else Mr. Bava wishes to sling at me from the television screen. I can’t wait! And thanks to Mr. Z. You’ve opened my eyes to a new meal possible from the buffet of Euro Trash. You are a true, trashy friend. I am an addict but I'm a functional one and all the happier for it. And I think Mr. Bava would smile approvingly, as he does below.