Saturday, August 17, 2019

The Bloody Pit #89 - GODZILLA VS BIOLLANTE (1989)


This year marks the 30th anniversary of the release of GODZILLA VS BIOLLANTE (1989) and we use that fact to discuss one of the least talked about movies of the Heisei era. The film contains a truly unique adversary for our favorite irradiated lizard. I mean, how many giant monsters are constructed from a rose bush and the spirit of a dead young girl? Jason Spear joins Troy and I to talk about this exceptional entry in the second age of the Big G’s cinematic history. Before we dig into the main topic, we consider the wealth of Godzilla Blu-Ray news that has been announced since our last conversation. The exciting Criterion #1000 release of the entire Showa series is chewed over as well as the recent Mill Creek MOTHRA Blu. We even talk about the extraordinary news that Mill Creek will be possibly releasing all of the various Ultra Man series in chronological order. Included in the opening section is a rundown (in every sense of that word) of the three Godzilla anime films with Troy and Jason explaining why I never need to see them. It’s not all good, folks!


Once the discussion of GODZILLA VS BIOLLANTE (1989) begins we range all over the film’s running time. We note the long break between 1984’s THE RETURN OF GODZILLA and the bizarre crowd-sourced way in which the new plant-based creature was created. Jason relates his amusing theory that the official Toho tale of the genesis of Biollante might be slightly fictional, much to my surprise. The film’s many strengths are examined as well as the sometimes very 1980’s John Williams nature of the movie’s musical cues. The details of the excellent Godzilla suit are discussed with perhaps too much time spent talking about the tongue. We mostly stay on target as we go along but I must apologize for my nearly five-minute-long rant about the Jurassic Park films. Sorry about that.

If you want to join the Godzilla themed conversation, you can email the show at thebloodypit@gmail.com or drop us a message on the Bloody Pit FaceBook page. We plan to have Jason back soon to talk about another Dario Argento film before we delve back into kaiju movies again. This is pretty fun! Thanks for listening.

Apple Podcasts LINK

MP3 Direct Download LINK


  




Friday, August 16, 2019

Poster Art for Rick Dalton Films





Looks like they would make a damned fine afternoon! 


Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Mondo Macabro Releases Details of BEAST AND THE MAGIC SWORD (1983) Blu-Ray!


The details of the extras to be included on Mondo Macabro's forthcoming Blu-Ray of Paul Naschy's THE BEAST AND THE MAGIC SWORD (1983) were announced a couple of days ago and there were some very nice surprises. We might have expected the 4K restoration of the film itself and it had already been publicized that Troy and I had contributed a new NaschyCast commentary track. But the addition of an archival introduction to the film by Paul Naschy is unexpected. 
And the inclusion of the documentary SMILE OF THE WOLF in which Naschy discusses all of his werewolf films on camera is very exciting! This is the kind of extra fans like me dream of getting to see. 
Add to that an interview with Gavin Baddeley, author of The FrightFest Guide to Werewolf Movies talking about the genre and Naschy's place within it and you have a feast of Spanish Horror information!  

The Limited edition that goes on sale in October will also have a reversible cover with brand new art by Rick Melton on one side (censored below but uncensored on the actual release) and the original poster art on the flip side as well as a booklet featuring brand new writing on the film by film historian Richard Harland Smith and a set of lobby card reproductions! 


We were very pleased to be asked play a part in the release of this incredible and important Naschy film and I think we've created one of our best commentaries for it. We're thrilled that MM asked us to do another track for their continuing series of Naschy Blu-Rays and that this rare movie is finally getting a major release in the United States. At last, every Paul Naschy fan will get to enjoy this under seen classic combination of European and Japanese sensibilities in the best possible presentation. Having seen the preliminary transfer I can say it looks spectacular! 

Keep an eye on Mondo's website for more information about the Limited Edition version! 


Sunday, August 11, 2019

What I Watched In July


Even if I wasn’t fascinated by the Folk Horror sub-genre, I would have been interested in MIDSOMMAR (2019). Writer/director Ari Aster’s previous film HEREDITARY (2018) was an incredible debut feature and signaled that a significant talent was on the scene. As a follow up he has chosen to play in THE WICKER MAN (1973) fields and has devised a smart, fascinating horror tale that uses classic tropes to examine interpersonal fears. At its core the film is about a breakup and the personal horror of the white-hot emotions of that universal moment. The film is steeped in feelings of loss, grief and disconnectedness so much so that they bubble underneath the surface at all times. Even the supposedly close collegial bonds between the male characters is shown to be discard-able in search of self-satisfaction. The casual cruelty and self-centeredness of the American characters (of course) lead to their downfall because, unlike their rural Swedish hosts, they do not see each other as a cohesive ‘family’. The film’s central romantic relationship is on the verge of collapse from the opening minutes of the film because the boyfriend feels overburdened by the emotional needs of his mate. He hasn’t the moral courage to end things so makes things worse for both people by dragging out the pain. There is never any doubt he will stumble but the details are the important part of the journey the film takes us on. How could his false face hide him in the constant, bright midsummer sunlight? This tale gives its audience much to chew on and discuss afterward which is far more than most efforts in the genre.


Finally, the producers of Spider-Man films have branched out beyond the same four or five villains! Since the 1960’s the character has had one of the most interesting rogues’ galleries of any superhero and the movies have concentrated on Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, The Lizard, a shortchanged Sandman and a lame version of Electro. I was thrilled when Marvel’s previous movie used The Vulture and now, we finally get a version of Mysterio in SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME (2019). I say ‘a version’ because this is a very different character from the original illusion creating criminal first seen back in Spider Man #13 fifty-five years ago. But the MCU wisely uses this character as part of its ongoing story crafting another very good part in the larger tapestry they are weaving. As usually, my favorite elements are the smaller details off to the side of the main plot. Also, I love that Mary Jane is clever enough to figure out Peter’s identity and the byplay with the Ned is a joy. The expansion of Happy Hogan’s role in the story is well played and the casting of Marisa Tomei as May was a brilliant choice as she continues to bring the right touch to every scene. There are nits to pick with some details but overall, I can hardly wait to see which of Spider-Man’s huge roster of bad guys makes it to the big screen next.


I’ve enjoyed Tarantino’s films in general and his latest is another cinematic joy. Much virtual ink is being spilled over the pros and cons of ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD (2019) but I’ll just say that, near the end, when a certain actress’ voice came out of that driveway intercom I actually teared up. That’s how it should have happened. That’s what would have been right. 

The film could have been slightly shorter but I loved every minute of this visual feast. Rumors say that QT might have a four-hour cut up his sleeve and, if so, I’ll be happy to check that out as well. 


THE LIST

SILVER BLAZE (1937) – 7 (not bad riff on this classic Sherlock tale)
SPIRIT OF ’76 (1990) – 6 (rewatch)
LAS VAMPIRAS (1969) – 6 (Mil Mascaras vs female vamps and John Carradine)
MIDSOMMAR (2019) – 8
ALIEN FROM THE DEEP (1989) – 4 (rewatch)
SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME (2019) – 7
THE GIANT SPIDER (2013) – 6
THAT GUY DICK MILLER (2015) – 9
THE GUMBALL RALLY (1976) – 6 (rewatch for the first time in 30 years!)
THE BLACK CAT (1941) – 6 (rewatch)
THE SEVEN FROM TEXAS (a.k.a. HOUR OF DEATH (1964) – 7 (solid early Euro-Western)
GODZILLA 1984 (1984) – 8 (rewatch)
THE SPIDER WOMAN STRIKES BACK! (1946) – 6 (interesting chiller from Universal)
COSMIC MONSTERS (1958) – 5 (rewatch)
ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD (2019) – 8
FRANKENSTEIN, THE VAMPIRE AND CO. (1962) – 4 (Mexican version of A & C MEET FRANKENSTEIN)
MONTANA (1950) - 6 (Errol Flynn western)
THE SONG OF THE THIN MAN (1947) – 7 (the last of the series) 



Saturday, August 10, 2019

DeathLok Comic Book Covers








I've been re-reading the original run of Deathlok tales and wishing that they had expanded his dystopian world into a full on alternative future. Instead they had him travel back to the early 1980's as a way of stopping the events that created his post-apocalyptic New York. I've never read the revived series that Marvel published in the 1990's but I have access to a collection of them now. The 90's and early 2000's were a bad time for Marvel's creative output so I'm not expecting much. 

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Trailers From Hell - THE DAY THE EARTH CAUGHT FIRE (1961)



Josh Olsen extols the virtues of this under-seen British science fiction classic. Director Val Guest brings his documentary style to this film in much the same was as he did for  the first Quatermass film. 

Sunday, August 04, 2019

Crime Novel Style Poster Art for Tarantino Films

About four years ago Paris-based artist David Redon created a series of alternative posters for the films of Quentin Tarantino. They are designed to look like old crime and detective paperback covers and I think they're pretty great. Check them out!







Pretty damned cool!