Oh how we all get richer / Playing the rolling game
Only the poor get poorer / We feed off them all the same
—Society‘s version of the Eton Boating Song
How do you explain a movie like Brian Yuzna’s Society? It truly is one of those things you must experience for yourself. The 1989 film is an important chapter in the body horror/ero goru subgenre, but it’s also just plain weird.
Jobriath A.D. tells the story of singer and would-be glam rock star Jobriath’s career and personal life. It focuses on the period when he was professionally active between 1968 and his death in 1983. His story is told nearly entirely from interviews with people who were involved in his life and career at the time or people who were influenced professionally by his work. There is some narration (by Henry Rollins, no less) to tie parts of the interviews together, and a series of animations provide visual interest and make up for the fact that there exists very little actual footage of Jobriath.
As I’ve been going through the movies that Olive Films has reissued, I’ve been finding some that are truly unique, amazing, and kind of unknown. One of these is called The Weapon.
The original German title of Michael Armstrong’s infamous Mark Of The Devil was Hexen bis aufs Blut gequält, literally translated into Witches Tortured Till They Bleed. It’s a horrifying, yet accurate title for a movie that contrasts lush scenery and exquisite period costumes with some of the most excruciating scenes of torture ever put on film.
Even talking about Zombieworld seems silly to me. Dread Central recently released a “movie” anthology of zombie shorts. That seems interesting at first, but when you notice that the shorts are have been around for a few years and are simply strung together with no wraparound, you realize this was just a sloppy and lazy way to make a quick buck.
My mom and I watched horror films consistently all through the years of my youth. My mom wasn’t a horror buff, but was really into slashers, so naturally I was as well because I soaked up whatever she would show me. Almost every night we would go to my room and watch at least one film and I would stay up late to make it a double feature. (To this day she will come over to my place and we will either watch a classic or I will show her something new I’ve discovered.)
As any regular reader of this site knows, especially if you follow Brad Henderson’s reviews, ’80s throwback horror and action films are a hot commodity right now. Sometimes they work; sometimes they don’t. The ones that do have two things in common: enthusiasm and commitment. Even when these films aren’t total successes, there are usually enough enjoyable elements to make them well worth watching. Which brings me to Wolfcop.
One of my favorite movies is a film from 1968 called Symbiopsychotaxiplasm. It is the cinematic definition of “meta.” A film crew is making a film in Central Park. They are being filmed by another film crew. Somewhere across town, a film class is critiquing the film as it plays out. Meanwhile, a flamboyant group of Central Park weirdos interrupts the filming of the original film. If it sounds like madness, it’s not. Sure, it’s experimental as Dr. Jekyll, but it’s an utterly fascinating watch.
Who the hell approves artwork for DVDs and Blu-rays for XLrator Media? I will slap the shit out of them for slapping together this bullshit for Poker Night.
It’s funny how simple movies were back in the day. That’s not a bad thing. It seems these films relied more on acting and cinematography rather than some intricate plot. Lately I’ve been checking out a lot of Olive Films releases and been pleasantly surprised with what I’ve been seeing.
Last night I checked out a very low-key crime drama, Track The Man Down. As I said in the beginning, some of the films from this era have basic plots and focus more on the look and performances; Track The Man Down is a perfect example of this. A group of men rob a dog track and one of the gang members holds onto the cache of cash. Once they figure out the cops are onto them they split, leaving the cash with one of the gang member’s girlfriends. From there the story unfolds more, giving us little surprises along the way.