Monthly Archives: December 2011

NEW YEAR’S EVE BAD MOVIE: NEW YEAR’S EVIL (1980)

The best thing about these seasonal bad movie reviews of mine is the fact that they save a lot of time by being appropriate AND already done. From 2010 it’s a repost of my review of the laughably bad holiday horror film New Year’s Evil.

New Year's EvilNEW YEAR’S EVIL (1980) – Category:  Enjoyably campy bad movie  elevated by kitsch-value in the casting    This is another of those holiday-themed slasher movies that followed in the bloody footsteps of the original Halloween. See my review of the Thanksgiving slasher movie Slasher In The House for more on this odd sub-genre.

Our cups runneth over with kitsch-casting in this little honey. ROZ KELLY, “Pinky Tuscadero” herself, stars as Blaze, an alleged punk rock icon who hosts an alleged punk rock (but really New Wave) concert being televised on New Year’s Eve.

Kelly is Continue reading

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COOL FOOTBALL HELMET: ST AMBROSE UNIVERSITY FIGHTING BEES

 Location: Davenport, IA

Comment: It’s no secret here at Balladeer’s Blog that I love the name Fighting Bees. I also love that incredibly cool helmet logo that St Ambrose has. This NAIA college team just needs to

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HOLIDAY SEASON BAD MOVIE DOUBLE FEATURE

As the Christmas holiday season for 2011 rapidly nears its close, here’s Balladeer’s Blog’s repost of my two annual Christmas turkeys, The Christmas Martian followed by Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny. 

THE CHRISTMAS MARTIAN (1971) – Category: A neglected bad movie classic that deserves a Plan 9-sized cult following.    Santa Claus Conquers The Martians gets all the attention, but this almost forgotten Canadian film from the 1970′s is one joyously weird acid trip of a movie! And for that “old-school”  bad movie feel the lips don’t match the dialogue, dubbed into English from the original French. (Yes it was made in that part of Canada!)

A spaceship even Ed Wood would be ashamed of, idiotic characters, a delightfully bad song and special effects that would have been outdated 10 years prior to filming highlight this movie that is perfect for Yuletide. The plot, such as it is, features Continue reading

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THE 8 COOLEST NAMED COLLEGE SPORTS TEAMS FROM ALL-FEMALE INSTITUTIONS

Balladeer’s Blog is always on top of the whole cool-named college sports teams situation. In the tradition of my previous lists of cool-named teams in various divisions of college sports comes this latest effort. This list will showcase the 8 Coolest Named College Sports Teams From All-Female Institutions. The list is in alphabetical order.

 AGNES SCOTT COLLEGE SCOTTIES

Location: Decatur, GA

Site: http://www.agnesscott.edu/athletics

Comment: If you liked Agnes Moorhead you’ll love Agnes Scott! Okay, maybe that’s not the greatest recruiting slogan, but it’s better than anything Penn State has to offer right now! And since I’m a Continue reading

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ANCIENT GREEK COMEDIES: DIONYSALEXANDROS (C: 430’s BCE)

For this 5th installment of my posts on Ancient Greek Comedies I’ll examine Dionysalexandros by Cratinus. For my post providing background info on ancient Greek comedies click here: https://glitternight.com/2011/09/22/at-long-last-my-ancient-greek-comedy-posts-begin/

Cratinus was one of the Big 3 in Attic Old Comedy along with Aristophanes and Eupolis, both of whom were much younger than he was. I chose Dionysalexandros as the first of his comedies to examine because it is a brilliant and, from the fragmentary evidence available on all non-Aristophanic comedies, a bold and possibly unique hybrid of Attic Old Comedy and traditional Satyr Plays.   

THE PLAY

In Dionysalexandros Cratinus pushed the envelope by Continue reading

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BALLADEER’S BOWL II – THE NAIA CHAMPS VS THE NCAA D3 CHAMPS

 It’s time for the 2nd edition of Balladeer’s Bowl, the annual event where I pit the NAIA college football champs against the champs from NCAA Division 3. The outcome is decided by votes from you readers. This year the NAIA is represented by the pride of Rich Koz-land AKA Chicago, IL, the St Xavier University Cougars (helmet at left). The Cougars pulled off the very difficult task of winning the title in their very first appearance in the championship game. Plus they had to do it by defeating the CC Fighting Saints, the dominant NAIA football dynasty of the past decade.

Making their second appearance in Balladeer’s Bowl are the NCAA D3 champs, the Whitewater Warhawks. The Warhawks once again defeated the Mt Union Purple Raiders for a Threepeat in D3 titles. Last year the Warhawks  lost to the 2010 NAIA champs, the aforementioned CC Fighting Saints, by a two to one margin in the voting. Will it be a 2nd straight victory for the NAIA team in the most illustrious Bowl of the season? Get your votes in and I’ll announce the winner next Tuesday, January 3rd. To keep the voting honest and prevent multiple votes by the same people you can vote by Continue reading

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CHRISTMAS CAROL-A-THON 2011: THE FRENCH TV VERSION (1984)

TF1 logo

TF1 in France

Christmas-Carol- A-Thon 2011 comes to a close with one of the most visually enticing versions ever made. Unfortunately, it’s also virtually impossible to obtain for people who lack the nearly psychotic drive necessary to track these things down.

TF1 Television in France first aired this version of A Christmas Carol, which could be described as a Carol for the arthouse crowd. Not a put-down OR a compliment, just an observation.

The performances are even more low-key than in the George C Scott version and the direction, by Pierre Boutron, is very inventive, bordering on a surrealist approach .The overall effect is like A Very Jean Cocteau Christmas or something. As with the Spanish Leyenda de Navidad this French production keeps the story in 1843 London and stars Michel Bouquet as Scrooge and Pierre Olaf as Bob Cratchit.

This 90 minute version of the Carol is one of the tiny handful that depict Scrooge at Marley’s funeral, like the 1969 Australian cartoon version. Marley’s Ghost has the look of a bearded badass, but delivers his warning to Scrooge with a cold and calculating air that is almost more chilling than Continue reading

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RANDY CLOWER: BALLADEER’S BLOG INTERVIEWS A MOVIE HOST LEGEND

Clower (right) with co-host Richard Malmos as “Film Vault Technicians First Class” on The Texas 27 Film Vault

Before MST3K there was THE TEXAS 27 FILM VAULT! Before Joel and Mike lovers of bad movies had Randy and Richard! Before Pearl there was Laurie Savino! Before Devil Dogs, Observers and Deep 13 there came Cellumites, giant rats and Level 31.

In the mid 1980’s The Texas 27 Film Vault was the show to watch on Saturday nights for wry mockery of Golden Turkeys preceded by episodes of vintage Republic Serials like Radar Men From The Moon and Canadian Mounties vs Atomic Invaders.    

The Texas 27 Film Vault is one of the great unsung Movie Host shows of the 1980’s and I was thrilled to get this exclusive interview with Randy Clower, co-star and co-creator of this legendary cult show from the Dallas/ Fort Worth area. “The Film Vault Guys” as they were often called by us fans, or “Vaulties”,  established the pattern that a few other Movie Hosts have since followed.

Clower, Richard Malmos and their friend Ken Miller put together a Public Access television show called The Trivia Guys and in a classic story of talent over budget the trio crafted the program with such care and detail it became a minor hit. The program had a very professional look for a Public Access production and its success prompted a PM Magazine feature on The Trivia Guys

Management at Dallas television station KDFI, Channel 27 ( the “27” in The Texas 27 Film Vault ) saw the PM Magazine feature and were impressed with the high- dollar look that Clower, Malmos and Miller had put together on a flyweight budget. They approached the trio about hosting a late-night B-Movie show since the Dallas/ Ft Worth area had been without its own home- grown version of that local tv staple since the days of Greg Bransom’s show Professor Cerberus and the Museum of Horrors.

Warming to the idea, the soon-to-be Film Vault Guys decided that vampires, mad scientists and creepy castles had been done ad nauseum in Movie Host shows by then and ingeniously went in a different direction.  Thus was born the Film Vault Corps, a fictional quasi- military organization that protected America’s schlock- culture heritage by safeguarding the bad, campy but loveable cinematic turkeys of the past. The men and women of the FVC carried out this task in various Film Vaults under every major city in the United States.

These vaults were Continue reading

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WAITING FOR THE END OF THE WORLD

According to the type of conspiracy kooks who think we never landed on the moon and that the 9-11 attacks were staged by the U.S. government the world has only one year to live. December 21st, 2012 is the latest date for the supposed “end of the world” and this type of irrational mania hasn’t been so widespread since the Y2K panic. In the year to come I’ll look at some of the colorful end of the world scenarios that enjoyed a vogue in the past.

In the 1850’s there was a widespread belief that Napoleon III was the Anti-Christ. It was explained that Continue reading

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NAIA COLLEGE BASKETBALL: COOL NAMES; CURRENT RANKINGS

 With the college football season over with in the divisions covered by Balladeer’s Blog it’s time to get caught up on basketball. For this first light-hearted dive into the 2011- 2012 basketball season I’ll cover the cool-named teams in the rankings and Continue reading

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