Saturday, April 30, 2011

More ex-rental tapes to clutter my cave... eh, apartment.

Two tapes I won on eBay and two I bought from a Cinehound member in Holland.

SOLDIER OF FORTUNE (VHS, Japan) directed by Pierluigi Ciriaci and starring Daniel (Hands of Steel) Greene and Bo Svenson. I was the only bidder! :D
The seller was David Z who enclosed some very nice extras. xD. Thanks buddy!


I SHALL RETURN (Vidoe2000, Holland). Taiwanese war flick.


RETURN OF THE DEMON (VHS, Hong Kong)


DON'T PLAY WITH FIRE (VHS, Japan, lbx) Tsui Hark's legendary film, in Cantonese. I was the only bidder with this one as well! :D

Friday, April 29, 2011

In PURSUIT of Mou Tun Fei

by András (Deliria)

Mou Tun Fei (aka. T.F. Mous) needs no introduction here, but his Shaw Brothers days are still overshadowed by his better known MEN BEHIND THE SUN. Not helping matters that his major work at Shaw Brothers, called BANK BUSTERS (1978) is unavailable on video.




The success of that film (a story about illegal immigrant criminals in Hong Kong) led to LOST SOULS, a kind of semi-sequel to BANK BUSTERS and one of the most extreme productions of the history of the studio. LOST SOULS was also a box office hit, so Shaw immediately signed Mou to do another modern exploitation (they called it "socio-realism" back then), this time on the subject of death penalty. The upcoming film, entitled THE STING OF DEATH was heavily promoted in Shaw's own magazine, Southern Screen.





Then - either in the middle of shooting or post-prod - Mou got in disagreements with the Shaws regarding his contract, left the production and travelled to communist China, where he started making movies again, including MEN BEHIND THE SUN. THE STING OF DEATH was left unreleased for four years, until 1985, when Shaw Brothers got two of the original film's stars Lo Meng and Pai Piao (both of 5 VENOMS fame) back on board, and assigned director Taylor Wong (BUDDHA'S PALM, SENTENCED TO HANG) to finish it up, using as much of Mou's footage as possible. With the help of overdubbing and newly shot footage, the story has been altered in such a way that it was no longer about death penalty, more like a gritty crime thriller with a warehouse-set action-scene to top it off. They called the result PURSUIT OF A KILLER and released to cinemas in September of 1985. The film did very poorly.




Contrary to the poster art (which is one of the worst I have ever seen coming out of HK) PURSUIT's story is not about a razorblade wielding woman in high heels who faces off a gweilo guy holding a gun to a sexy woman's head. I wish! Rather, it is about three mainland refugees/low level triads, who are arrested during their robbery job in HK. After serving their sentence, they are killed one by one by an unknown assassin. The last remaining convict (played with over-the-top enthusiasm by Lo Mang) is bailed out by the police and used as a bait. In its current form (available on VCD from Celestial, HK), the movie includes about 70% of Mou Tun Fei's work. I took these on-set pics from an 1981 issue of Southern Screen (thanks to Lynn Haynes Memorial Collection) accompanied by matching screenshots from PURSUIT.







It is not that easy to spot the new footage, unless you concentrate on Lo Meng's ever changing hairstyle. The major problem that the filmmakers (in '85) faced was that they couldn't bring back the actor who played the assassin in the original footage.




Luckily for them, Mou shot the murder scenes in the style of a giallo (these are the best bits in the film, btw), so the face of the actor only shows up towards the end. You may then notice that the character is in fact played by two different actors. All the scenes featuring this guy (Michael Tong) was shot later:




What is interesting here is how Taylor Wong tried to ape Mou Tun Fei's style, so the result wouldn't be a total mess. There are a couple of sleazy sex scenes so Wong does one as well, but in more flashy way (shot by the great HKSC cinematographer, Arthur Wong). And no Mou Tun Fei movie would be complete without sodomy. Surprisingly, this sequence (which looks toned down) was mainly done by Wong, but at least one differently lit shot crops up from the original, and I'm sure Mou's version was the more extreme.




While far from a great film, the production history of PURSUIT OF A KILLER makes it an entertaining curiosity-piece, its thankless cut and paste job can either be seen as a cynical attempt by the then failing studio to release a product, or as a testament of the editing skills of HK filmmakers. Both points are valid.






Big thank-yous go out to András for this feature on Mou Tun Fei's (aka. T.F. Mous) "lost" film. I own the Celestial video-cd and wasn't even aware that it's (mostly) directed by Mou! Check out András' own cool blog here and (and bring a Google translator for Hungarian!). His latest entry is on the grim HK flick INTRUDER!
/Jack

Messy mess








No, this isn't from a book store as Resonator Chris so kindly asked. It's from my lounge room! And yes it's a bloody mess. I've got too much stuff and so last week I got some more book cases to put it all on (or some of it anyway) but instead of making room for the new cases I decided to just put them in the middle of the apartment! No, I probably didn't think it thru properly. Then the idea was to load stuff onto them and in the end get the rest of my mess sorted out as well after which hopefully I'll be able to move it all to where ever I want it (preferably not in the middle of the fucking room!). Argh. Sorry the lousy mobile phone pix, I couldn't find my camera (obviously). I've got the camera now but I still haven't located the fucking cord to connect it to the computer and upload pix! And this isn't even all, I've still got a new couch sitting at my dad's place + some more cd jungle men and a new big TV set. This needs true organisation and it's probably gonna be like a cave here when I'm done. Oh, did I mention the 3 big removal boxes I've got sitting with ex-rental tapes + one double size huge (as in fucking huge) box full of more tapes - and I still need room for that as well. Argh. But I'm so not gonna do like my silly cousin and put any of it in the basement. He put most of his huge comic book collection in his basement room (he lived in an apartment building) and some derelict kids started nicking them. After the first ones disappeared I said to him: "Why don't you move them into your flat?" to which the dumb bastard replied: "I've got a new lock for the basement door now". Well, you know what happened don't you? Yeah. Later he didn't pay his rent for months on end, the cops came around but at that time he'd flown the coop and disappeared for a good number of years. And he even had one of my books! >_<

MACHETE MAIDENS UNLEASHED on dvd in May and it includes THE MUTHERS!!!

[Click the scan twice to see in it in all it's full glory]

Simon over at EXPLOSIVE ACTION just shot me an email saying MACHETE MAINDES UNLEASHED... i.e. the cool documentary film on American-Filipino co-productions made in the Philippines (and the sequel to NOT QUITE HOLLYWOOD - The Wild, Untold Story of Ozploitation!)... is going to get a DVD release from Umbrella in OZ in May.

And get this: as a *small* extra feature the DVD is also gonna contain Cirio H. Santiago's THE MUTHERS from 1976!!! The film stars Jeannie Bell who was also in T.N.T. JACKSON which I've written about before.

This is certainly good news. There's more info on the Twitch site and it states THE MUTHERS will be anamorphic 16:9 format!! Awesome!!! My old Danish VHS is fullscreen and way too dark so an upgrade is highly welcome.

Special features:

-Audio Commentary with Director and crew
-More stories from the cast (including Mitchum, Landis, Haig, Dante & Arkush) (60 min)
-Filipino exploitation trailer reel (65 min}
-The Oath of green blood
-"Up From The Depths" monster test footage
-Fantastic Fest red carpet featurette
-Fantastic Fest Q&A with Roger & Julie Corman, Hartley and Tim League
-Poster and stills gallery (100 images)
-Behind the scenes gallery (100 images)
-Theatrical trailer
-Easter egg.

Disc 2

-Cirio Santiago's THE MUTHERS (16:9 transfer)



And big thanks to Simon! Chick his site and he's on YouTube here.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Censorshit in Sweden



If you're in Scandinavia you definitely ought to watch this 60 minute documentary on SVT1 tonight! Censuren - en thriller is a docu on the Swedish censorship board which is now being put to sleep so to speak. Apparently Sweden has had the longest running censorship board in the world and the documentary film is about what the poor saps of Sweden weren't allowed to watch because they didn't live in the free world across the big ocean (i.e. Denmark, haha).

And there's also gonna be interviews with Christina Lindberg about her films. If you miss the show tonight it's being rerun at some later dates. Check below for info. One interesting piece of info from SVT is the very last line in their programme description (check below) where it says the film won't be screened in SVT's internet edition due to the strong contents of the programme. Oh, the irony, the irony.

Censuren - en thriller

Se filmklippen du aldrig tidigare fått se. Förbudens tid är förbi. Efter hundra år läggs Statens Biografbyrån ner. Vad är det för vålds- och sexscener som censorerna satt saxen i, och varför?

Sverige har haft världens äldsta filmcensur. Man har varit rädd för hur våldsam film påverkar tittare. Och ända in i modern tid har våldsamma filmer fortsatt att oroa och skrämma.

I Censuren - en thriller får vi se vilka ingrepp som gjorts på filmer och vi får också en bild av vilket sorts samhälle vi velat ha i Sverige, och vad vi velat gömma undan.

Christina Lindberg berättar om sin tid som hämndlysten actionhjältinna på 70-talet. Hennes rollfigur har inspirerat filmare välden över, inte minst regissören Quentin Tarantino.

Sändningstider: Censuren - en thriller
SVT1 Torsdag 28 apr 2011 kl 21.00
SVT1 Fredag 29 apr 2011 kl 04.10
SVT1 Söndag 1 maj 2011 kl 01.15

På grund av programmets innehåll visas filmen inte i SVT Play.



EDIT (29/4/11): I watched the documentary yesterday (twice!) and I thought it was really good so if you get a chance you should definitely check it out. And the segment on Christina Lindberg was cool!

[insert Homer Simpson drool here]



Arrrrghhh...

I can't tell you how long I've been searching for these tapes... but it's been a real long time! It's the Danish SUPER EASTERN SERIEN series from Video International in Denmark! I remember I saw one of them when I used to frequent the "Videoudlejningen" video rental store in Copenhagen which is easily 6 or 7 years back, maybe even 8! The SUPER EASTERN SERIEN series contains 8 titles so there are still two I haven't got but at least I'll be getting 5 new ones! And they seem to be in awesome quality. xD. The only tape of the 8 I've been able to track down previously is GHOSTLY FACE. The seller only wanted to part with all 6 tapes as one bundle so either I made a bid for all of them or none at all. But anyhoo, who cares. Happy happy joy joy, as Fred Anderson says. :D

I also won this little thingy tonight...



Amando de Ossorio's HYDRA, MONSTER FROM THE DEEP on ex-rental VHS from Australia. Word is the film is crap - but the cover is fantastic and it is of course made by the guy who did the BLIND DEAD films so obviously I had to have it. I was the only bidder! Whoo-hoo!!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

What's up with the HKMDB? o_O

Just... who ARE these people??? @_@

I wonder who the people are who write the Hong Kong Movie Data Base reviews??

Let me try and explain. To cut it down to the bare bones so to speak: The way I see it, there are THREE types of Hong Kong film viewers in this world:

1) Chinese people (and often other Asians) who just don't understand the fascination that fans from the West have with Asian action cinema.
2) Then we have the kung fu film fans that mostly hail the 1970s films as gold, and regard most "new" stuff (everything after 1981) as crappy modern day stuff, haha.
3) And then finally we have fans like me who discovered HK cinema via the modern day films (i.e. the films the kung fu fans often ridicule, lol).

Now, I often look up films on the HKMDB because I have this notion that credits info is probably much better there than on the laughable IMDb (and it mostly is). But mostly I try not to read any of the reviews because... and here is what I don't get... 99% of all reviews there slag off the films!!! O_O

Even the films that are widely recognised as being awesome. Even fan favourites. I don't get it! I do of course realise not everyone agrees with me on every little shitty trash film that I happen to like - but still!

Is it maybe that the HKMDB is made by people from either of the first two categories and the films I usually look up are modern day horror/action/trashy stuff that they just don't like.

One of my favourite "girls with guns" films is ANGEL 2 (aka Iron Angels 2). It's such a joy to watch if you like that kind of films (girls who... shoot guns... kick ass... and look cute) and in the fan press I don't even remember anybody not liking these films just a little bit. But here's what the HKMDB reviewers have to say about ANGEL 2:


Reviewer #1:

- "just comes off as your run-of-the-mill female-oriented action flick"


Reviewer #2 (the entire review!!):

"5 minutes of enjoyment, 85 minutes of misery
Almost as bad as the original, but slightly more enjoyable. I think I remember this one being shot on location in Malaysia, which was the only highlight of the movie, the location.
See my reveiw for the original and you will see what I mean when I say this is not much better."


Reviewer #3:

"Basically a pointless collection of action scenes strung together with an incoherent plot concerning terrorists. About 15 minutes worth of entertainment total, not really worth wasting time on."


[insert confused smileys]

And this is what it's like with most reviews on HKMDB in regards to newer action and horror movies (after 1980).

Just WHO are these people and why do they watch HK movies when they so obviously don't like them. Personally I would find another hobby.

HK chicks so bad ass they spit - and speak foul language in Turkish




Check out my two new ex-rental tapes! It's the Hong Kong girls with guns flicks BRAVE YOUNG GIRLS and ANGEL 2 (aka Iron Angels 2). I don't have to tell you it's YUKARI OSHIMA on the cover of BRAVE, and Moon Lee, Elaine Lui, and Kharina are in ANGEL 2 (it's Kharina, aka Ha Wan-Loh/Kharina Isa/Karina Andrews, on the cover). Incidentally, Yukari Oshima was the bad guy in the first ANGEL film!

Pffft!! Buddy, you'll need more than a simple samurai sword if you wanna take out Carter Wong!!!



Check out this wild and bloody scene from SHARK OPERATION! Thanks to Member-X for uploading it. The clip is from a Danish VHS.


PS: Member-X is selling his tape on eBay. I've already got a copy otherwise I'd scoop it up. xD

Best dino every on a Monday

Sunday, April 24, 2011

X - The Man With the X-ray Eyes - trailer



If you wanna watch more Roger Corman trailer then check the uploader's channel; The uploader is actually Roger Corman (or his company anyway).

Saturday, April 23, 2011

12 x Andy Sidaris = babes galore

Thanks to a guy called Brian I discovered this 3 disc DVD set last night; It's from Mill Creek and it contains 12 Andy Sidaris films!! The set has just been released (in March) and they're selling them like cupcakes. Well, they ought to anyway, who wouldn't want 12 Andy Sidaris films! If you're in Denmark you might remember I had the image from Sidaris' STACEY on the cover of the last issue of STAY SICK! Unfortunately, STACEY has never been released on DVD altho it's reportedly his best film alongside SEVEN (which to the best of my knowledge has never been released on DVD either, but it's hard to tell as the Sidaris DVD releases is a jungle out there!).



Anyhoo, I ordered the set right away and fortunately I checked with Amazon.com cos it turned out it's heaps cheaper ordering the set from there than from Amazon UK! Including postage to Europe it came to just under 12 bucks US but from the UK branch it would have been around 18 dollars. Of course, now I have to live with the risk of being caught by customs but, pfft, I spit in the face of danger!



The films in the set are:

THE DALLAS CONNECTION
DAY OF THE WARRIOR
DO OR DIE
ENEMY GOLD
FIT TO KILL
GUNS
HARD HUNTED
HARD TICKET TO HAWAII
MALIBU EXPRESS
PICASSO TRIGGER
SAVAGE BEACH
RETURN TO SAVAGE BEACH




There's an official Andy Sidaris webpage where the box is for sale. When I registered (to be able to watch trailers) the registration email was signed by the late director's wife, Arlene Sidaris.

There are covers for each film here and for the front page go here.


"It wasn't a significant bullet"




- and here's the full interview:



- and here's an interview with the BBC interviewer about the incident (for some reason it's non-imbeddable).

Shell Scott shenanigans

"I was looking at the lovely blonde in the one-and-one-half-piece swimsuit, thinking that if she got any curvier she'd be banned, and then, just as if she knew exactly what I was thinking, she got up and started walking towards me. Possibly to slap me."

Ahh, the beginning of another Richard S. Prather novel. :D

Japanese in the mail


In the mail this morning: AKIRA!!! On blu-ray you ask? Nope!!! The double mammoth vhs case from the UK that I couldn't afford in '93. I found a seller with a brand new copy on Amazon UK. "Fuck it", I thought, I wanna finally scratch off that tape from my early 1990s wants-list!!! Muhahahahahaha...

Tape #1 contains the film itself, fully letterboxed, in Japanese w/English subs. Tape #2 is a 50 min production report. I'm not a manga geek so I have no idea if that one has even been released on dvd (but it probably has).

Btw, I've recently discovered that there's no less than three different English dubs! Imagine that. Why bother with any dubs!? Watch the damn film the way it was meant to, in Japanese. :D

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Easter!

Samurai Commando Mission 1549 - trailer



My mate Paul directed my attention to this *kind of* Japanese remake of another awesome Japanese film called TIMESLIP (aka G.I. Samurai). This new one is entitled SAMURAI COMMANDO - MISSION 1549 and just like TIMESLIP it's about a modern day platoon of Japanese soldiers that are sent back to the past. The trailer certainly looks cool. I'll finish here so I can head off to the nearest video webstore. No, wait, oh bugger, it's Easter, they're all closed!! Haha.

Elevator muzak?

It's been a while since I last bought some music so this week I scooped up a few titles from the local music pusher. Some of it I knew very well, some of it I already own on LP, and some of it I hated as a kid but thought I should give a chance. xD.

The Smiths: Hatful of Hollow (my first The Smith LP which I bought shortly after it came out. This version contains singles versions and radio recordings from The Peel Show, and it's better than their debut LP).

The Smiths: s/t

Morrissey: Bona Drag (wauw, imagine if some old geezer came up from the cellar at The Smiths' old record label and said "Bloody hell, I just found the mystical last Smiths album that was never released!". Well, that's how this Morrissey record sounds and how good it is. In my view anyway [and that's what counts here, haha]).

Morrissey: You Are the Quarry (fortunately it was very cheap, otherwise it'd be quite annoyed as I forgot I've already got a copy of it!).

Sex Pistols: Never Mind the Bollocks Here's the Sex Pistols (ordinary release without all the extra tracks. Fortunately! I want the original track list, goddammit!).

The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Are You Experienced (UK version)

Sonic Youth: Goo (original one cd version)

John Coltrane: Blue Train, Traneing in, Dakar (3 albums on one 2 disc release)

Miles Davis: Kind of Blue, Ascenseur Pour L'échafaud, Somethin' Else (3 albums on one 2 disc release)

P J Harvey: 4-Track Demos

P J Harvey: Rid of Me

Kent: En Plats i Solen

The Ventures: Guitar Freakout, Super Psychedelics (2 albums on one 1 disc release)


- and in addition to all the above Henrik Larsen was so kind as to send me a bucketful of 1980s heavy metal albums (on cd-r) and thanks a lot for those, Henrik!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Review of Norwegian horror movie extraordinaire...

...I keep babbling about the cool Norwegian horror movie DE DØDES TJERN and now kool Todd over at "Die Die Die Fuckers Kill Kill" blog has seen the light too!!! Go here (there's an awesome Aqua Lene video as well!!).

Saturday, April 16, 2011

What a difference!

My gawd! I've just received the DVD (Cannibals: Legend or Realism) that I ordered on Monday from the Czech Republic!! It's Saturday today! How awesome is that!! The last time I ordered a DVD from the Czech Rep. (The Jail) it took 2 months to get here! O_O And the first time I ordered from said republic (Zombie: The Beginning, Island of the Dead, Deep Blood) it also took a very long time and I had to deal with bank transfer and writing personal letters to the company. Wauw, this is such a difference. For future purchases I'm definitely going to check with these people first to see if they've got what I'm looking for. Oh, and did I mention that out of the three eShops they are the only one that accepts PayPal! So much better than annoying bank transfers or credit-card payment that you're never really sure is secure or not.


Baby_eating

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Responsible... Moi??


Altho I'm very much against censorship I do understand that gore (even fake latex stuff and stage blood) isn't everyone's cup of tea (not least considering the previous cannibal post) and there are 5 year old kids surfing the net as well (because they've got irresponsible parents) so I guess I'll have to ask to see some id at door from now on (flashing boobs will get you in tho).




Needless to say the image was created by Member-X.

Screen grabs from the Czech CANNIBALS: LEGEND OR REALITY dvd

Woo-hoo! I've just got an email from the nice people at the Czech store where I ordered the film saying they've shipped it now. Fantastic!! I was afraid they might not have it in stock. When I ordered the last DVD (Mattei's The Jail) from (another) Czech shop it took two months before I got it because they had to back order it from the publisher (funnily enough their website didn't mention any of this when I placed the order!). Well, this is certainly cool news.

I found some screen grabs on a Czech film site and I'm posting all of them here + credits info. You'll find the original page (with a long plot description in Czech) here.











Original title : Cannibals, Legend Or Reality
Author comment : Bruno Mattei
Advisor : Daniele Di Stasiu
Anthropological advisor : Pierluigi Tentori
Production : Diamonds International Film Production, La Perla Nera
Producer : Gianni Paolucci
Editor : Daniel Campello
Music : Beat Records
Technical Director : David Hunt (aka Bruno Mattei)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

War City: Die to Win - trailer



Awesome! I want this! It's out on uncut DVD outta South Africa. :D

Monday, April 11, 2011

Claudio Fragasso's DIRTY WAR (Italy, 2010)

Bruno Mattei's CANNIBALS: LEGEND OR REALITY (2008)

Original title: CANNIBALI: LEGGENDA O REALTÁ




BLOODY HELL!!!

I've been wanting the "lost" Bruno Mattei cannibal movie CANNIBALS: LEGEND OR REAITY (Cannibali: Leggenda o Realtà) for many months now. It's among the last "new" films he made towards the end of his life (unter the alias "David Hunt"). It's really a 4 episode made-for-tv thingy but only released as an edited film version on DVD. And only in ONE country: the good ol'e Czech Republic! It's a pest ordering DVDs from there. But last night... finally... my buddy Member-X from Cinehound found a store for me that has the DVD and accepts non-Czech customers. And they even take PayPal! So this afternoon I place the order. And then I surf on some German site and discover that...

EDIT: and in the text that followed I wrote about how I thought there was going to be a reg. 1 dvd release but unfortunately I confused it with the release of another, entirely different movie. I've decided to delete the text in order not to confuse fans even more.

Oh, and I just discovered there's a new Claudio Fragasso film as well (from 2010)!!




EDIT, December 2011: There's was some confusion around the time when a reg. 1 DVD that was called THE REAL CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST was going to get released and unfortunately I thought it was an aka title for the Mattei film. It is not. It's a completely different mondo movie called GUINEA AMA (by Akira Ide). As a wild coincidence Bruno Mattei actually used some of the mondo footage from GUINEA AMA in his HELL OF THE LIVING DEAD! How's that for weirdness!!