Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Spy vs. spy vs. spy; new this week at the buffet…

This week the BMB spans the globe to bring you a variety of superfly spy-tastic sinema.

First, join The Kommandant as he channels his inner James Bond and survives both Assassination In Rome and Espionage In Tangiers.

Then join Bunny and dive into the tale of a magnificently silly secret agent, Le Magnifique.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Bunny goes to the Oscars; 2007 edition…

As some of you may know, I have a lot of jobs. I'd list them all for you but then we'd risk veering off topic - and I haven't even gotten near the topic yet. Plus it would just stress me out because then I would have to face the realization that there about twenty other things I should be doing right at this very moment, other than writing a post-Oscar blog post. Unfortunately, however, a post-Oscar blog post can't really be postponed seeing as how it has a small enough window of relevance as it is. Fortunately for my to-do list, I don't have a whole lot to say about this year's Oscars so this won't keep me, or you, occupied for too long.

To sum up the 2007 awards show in three words: it was boring. And predictable. (Except when the guy who played Captain Invincible won an award. I'm sure no one saw that coming; least of all Eddie Murphy.) But that would have been five words. In fact, the biggest surprise of the evening was how well I did on my filled-out-at-the-last-minute (and consisting mostly of blind guesses because I didn't see a single one of these movies) Oscar ballot. Normally the Kommandant has superior skills when it comes to figuring out the whims of voting Academy but this year his instincts failed him. I'm thinking it was the weather. (There was a snow / slush storm here in Philly yesterday afternoon, which may have clouded his judgment or otherwise interfered with his psychic abilities.) If the balance of our respective luck stays true to course, he should beat me soundly at Scrabble the next time we play. Which will then assure that I will beat him at mini-golf on our first round of '07. But I digress.

It was nice to see Forest Whitaker honored; I've always liked him. Ditto Martin Scorcese and Ennio Morricone but, in retrospect, those two honors seem a little irrelevant at this point. I mean, the rest of us acknowledged Scorcese as a brilliant filmmaker and Morricone as a brilliant composer a long time ago. Aren't they supposed to set trends in Hollywood? Speaking of which, let's move on to what we really watch the Oscars for: the fashion. Which was boring and predictable as well.

Oh how I long for the days before actresses had on-site stylists armed with cell phones who have people text messaging them reports on what ANTM's Mr. Jay just said about their client's outfit on E! so they can re-dress her a bit before her big moment. (How else do you explain the disappearance of that Patti Labelle circa Lady Marmalade inspired aluminum foil shrug thing that chick from Dreamgirls who is not Beyonce wore on the red carpet; meaning the one that was mysteriously absent when she sauntered up to the stage to receive her award a couple hours later. That shit was the highlight of the evening.)

In summation, none of the ensembles were enough to distract my attention away from the Women's Fashion Spring 2007 issue that came in yesterday's New York Times or the super cute shrug I'm knitting*. Nor was the event itself. I think that kind of says it all.

(*Just in case anyone is actually interested enough in what I'm knitting to look at that link, my version will be sans pointy things. No offense to the designer, who I think is wonderful. I'm just not a pointy triangle edging kind of girl. And, I'm sorry guys. I know this whole thing is way off topic. But I haven't had the time to start a knitting blog, due to the abundance of jobs I mentioned earlier, so I had nowhere else to write that. I couldn't help myself though, it had to be written! Finishing a sweater is one thing; finishing a sweater that actually fits great and looks good on you can make a person a little giddy.)

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Screaming cryptic terror; new this week at the buffet…

Bunny grabs some earplugs and starts in on somewhat timid Euro-shocker And Now The Screaming Starts.

While The Kommandant peeks inside a cryptic, terrifying Crypt Of Terror and uncovers a non-sensical pairing of two completely unrelated flicks from the '70s, Land Of The Minotaur & Terror.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Melting Satanists and vengeful coal miners; new this week at the buffet…

Happy Valentine's Day everyone. I don't know what you've all got planned for this "holiday" but I hope it's fun. We don't have anything specific on our schedule today, aside from a swanky sounding dinner the Kommandant has planned for us. (The post dinner plans I have for him won't be discussed in public.) But we did both manage to clear our respective work schedules enough to take the rest of day off, which is definitely something to celebrate. Anywhoo, I have planned a special VD menu for you, our beloved buffet readers, as well; let's get to it so I can get back to that day off I was just talking about. Okey dokey?

For our appetizer, join me as we bathe in the Shatner versus Satan showdown, The Devil's Rain; also starring Vinnie Barbarino, Lt. McHale, and the dude from Green Acres.

Then, for our main course, join the Kommandant as he returns to The Decade That Dripped Blood and falls for first wave slasher flick My Bloody Valentine.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Lust Or Bust; not exactly new, but newly uploaded to the blog…

Did you know one year ago today, in the middle of a Noreaster inspired fit of boredom, I started the B-Movie Buffet Blog? It's true. Technically it was one year ago yesterday, but I don't really count that day since I didn't post anything, except a test sentence to see if it would work. (And it did! Take that Yahoo Groups.)

Our region was actually due for another big snowstorm this week, not today but Wednesday, AKA Valentine's Day 2007, which I thought would be appropriate. (I even heard our neighbor Andy - as mentioned in said first blog entry - revving up his woefully under-used snow blower this morning.) But alas, as of today's forecast at least, it seems like that won't be coming to pass.

At any rate, in honor of this snowless blog anniversary, and the impending St. Valentine's Day holiday, I present to you the second official Bunny's B-Movie Buffet column, in it's original form. (Sans my review of Vamipros Lesbos, which appears on our website in an expanded form.) Enjoy!

Ah, love… life's sweetest reward… fortunately for you readers that's all I remember from the theme from The Love Boat; and fortunately for me it's still enough to use it as the introduction to today's special menu at the B-movie Buffet.

As many of you probably know, Valentine's Day is this week. And whether you're married, dating or single; gay, straight, bisexual, asexual, a virgin or a stone cold hoochie - you'll need something to do on Valentine's Day. Hell, we all need something to do every day but let's not make ourselves crazy. One day at a time. For this particular Valentine's Day night may I recommend dinner and a movie? (And then maybe some other stuff that won't be discussed in this column; your sexual habits are your own business.)

Whether you hate love or love to love, everyone can appreciate a full tummy and a good flick. Which in my house means a good bad flick, and there's no shortage of those to salute romance gone right or wrong. In an effort to refamiliarize myself with some movies I saw years ago and now wanted to write about, the Kommandant and I spent the weekend before Valentine's Day watching these particular movies so we'll have to choose something else. You didn't though, so if you're in the mood for some grade B spice, pick one of these tales of the lusty and / or love-lorn and dive-in.

Bride Of The Monster (Image Entertainment) You cannot talk about B-movies without mentioning Ed Wood at some point. Well, I suppose you could, but I'd really prefer that you didn't. In honor of today's theme I've chosen this timeless tale of love, power and a giant man-killing octopus. Bela Lugosi plays Dr. Vornoff, a mad scientist with an evil plan (what self-respecting mad scientist doesn't have an evil plan?) and, thanks to his one successful experiment, an unusually strong assistant / henchman named Lobo. (Played by Tor Johnson.) But all is not well in the dilapidated castle on the edge of town they call home. Poor Lobo isn't complete. Henchmen need love too, you know; and then there's Dr. Vornoff's lust for control of the universe. Not to worry, the doctor's got a plan that can kill those two birds with one stone. Step one: find a pretty young lass and give her superhuman strength. Step two: mate said lass with Lobo and viola—a race of atomic super people under the doctor's command. Finding the woman is the easy part, beat reporter Janet Lawton practically falls right into Vornoff's lap while trying to get the first scoop on the "other monster" the town is living in fear of. (Remember the octopus?) Will Janet's fiancee arrive in time to rescue his love or will she become the bride of the monster? There's only one way to find out.

Suburban Roulette (Something Weird) Some say love was a whole different ballgame back in the swingin' '60s. Maybe they're right; I wouldn't know, I was born in 1970. If this movie (dubbed one of the sleaziest movies in the history of the world by Joe Bob Briggs) is any indication, the term love thy neighbor certainly had a whole different meaning in some neighborhoods in the late sixties. At least the neighborhoods where there was a lot of wife swapping. And wouldn't you know, that just happens to be the kind of neighborhood the Fisher family settles down in. At first, suburban living seems like the perfect salve for their wounded love; he's promised to give up drinking and she, to stop fooling around with other men. Sounds reasonable enough but, as we soon see, easier said than done. Within minutes of arriving at their new home they're greeted by a friendly neighbor who invites them to a bar-b-que. Maybe in the city that would be an innocent enough invitation but out here in the 'burbs sin is in, baby, and soon after meeting all their new neighbors, Burt starts throwing back drinks like it's New Years Eve while Eileen canoodles in the corner with the hostesses hunky husband. And that's just the start of the sexual shenanigans. Surprisingly enough, even suburban swingers eventually tire of that routine and end up resorting to good ol' fashioned monogamy instead. Except Eileen, she goes nuts and o.d.'s on pills; but the other couples go back to monogamy, and presumably so do Burt and Eileen once she regains consciousness. Awwww. Love, one; whorin' around, zero.

Tromeo And Juliet (Troma) OK, remaking Romeo and Juliet is not the most original idea but Troma's Lloyd Kaufmann has made a career out of leaving no obvious cinematic stone unturned. In fact, it's surprising he waited until '97 to give it a shot, but when there are so many Toxic Avenger sequels to make, you've got to budget your time. So what's to set this apart from the other film versions of the same timeless tale? Well, for one thing Lemmy isn't in any of those other versions. (In this one, he serves as the chorus. For those of you not versed in all things Shakespearean, the chorus speaks only to the audience and kind of fills in the gaps and moves the story along.) The other thing that sets it apart is that it's made by Troma. They are legitimate B-Movie making / producing legends and this particular movie prominently features pretty much every aspect of the unique brand of cinematic magic that has made them famous - lots of nudity, gore, sex, "special effects," carefully placed inside jokes, etc. I suppose they could have really gone all the way and made Tromeo some kind of mutant with a giant prostethic something but - hey, it's Shakespeare. Even Kaufmann's gotta pay Bill his props. The story does get somewhat Troma-tized though. (If you will.) Long forgotten is the real reason the Montagues and Capulets hate each other; in this 20th Century version, set in New York City's Lower East Side, the patriarchs of the Que and Capulet families were once partners in exploitation filmmaking. When Capulet blackmails Que into signing away his rights to their films a bitter, bitter feud ensues. Years later, when innocent young buck Tromeo spies the lovely, lithe Juliet at a costume party, love / lust turns everything even more topsy turvy. (As love / lust is wont to do.) I won't give the whole plot away, to see what happens to our star crossed lovers you'll just have to investigate for yourself. I have to hand it to Troma with this one, they definitely pulled out all the stops while attempting, and succeeding, in putting their own stamp on an oft told story.

Wham, Bam, Thank You Spaceman (Something Weird) From the oh-so-kooky mind of Harry Novak comes Wham, Bam, Thank You Spaceman, a completely and utterly wacky softcore sci-fi "comedy." (I use the term loosely as most comedies are funny and this movie isn't necessarily.) You know you're in for a wild ride when you get introduced to the two leading "males," Sergeant Jack-off and Private Asshole, as they get their assignments. (They're aliens, wear full costumes through the whole film and don't have normal genitalia; I'd elaborate but why spoil it?) Their goal is fairly simple: impregnate earth women to propagate their species. But seeing as how they have funky genitalia and all, first they have to observe us strange earthlings and our stranger mating rituals. Then, after that, they get their alien freak on with a wide array of fortunate (or unfortunate depending on your outlook) ladies until their mission is complete and alien babies are being born into Los Angeles county hospitals like it ain't no thing. Way to go vulgar spacemen! I definitely wouldn't recommend this to the B-Movie novice, you need to have seen at least one other Harry Novak film—and liked it—in order get anywhere near appreciating this. (Be forewarned, the dialogue is awful. Awful!) But if you think you've seen it all in the realm of badfilm and you haven't seen this your mission, my earthbound friend, is not yet complete.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Bunny & The Kommandant Meet The Aztec Mummy... Collection; new this week at the buffet...

This week we get wrapped up in the trilogy of tomb dwelling terror that is The Aztec Mummy Collection, featuring La Momia Azteca, AKA Attack Of The Aztec Mummy; La Maldicion De La Momia Azteca, AKA Curse Of The Aztec Mummy; and La Momia Azteca Contra El Robot Humano, AKA The Robot VS. The Aztec Mummy.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Franco-A-Go-Go revisited; new this week at the buffet…

New to the menu this week we have a double dose of Franco-phonic film, sure to satisfy the hunger of the most discerning Eurotrash fan.

First up, join The Kommadant in getting bitten by Franco's literal take on the tale of the world's most famous vampire, Count Dracula.

Then join me as we travel back in time to the swingin' '70s where we'll be slayed by Jess' ode to sexadelic homicidal revenge, She Killed In Ecstasy.

Happy Birthday To Us…

As mentioned in a previous post, we here at the B-Movie Buffet have a few different anniversaries that mark various starting points in our relatively brief existence but I would be remiss if I didn't point out that today is the website's official birthday, as it was exactly two years ago today that I uploaded the "alpha" version of the site. (Being an alpha woman, I never bothered to attempt a beta version.) I don't have a whole lot else to say on that subject except - yay!

Thanks to all of our contributors, the kind people / companies that send us DVDs to review each and every week and, of course, our readers (if you're reading this, that means you!) for your support and encouragement.