Monthly Archives: May 2019

COMIN’ AT YA! (1981): MOVIE REVIEW

Comin at Ya 2COMIN’ AT YA! (1981) – Directed by Ferdinando Baldi, Comin’ At Ya! is often credited with starting the pointless and bizarre 1980s revival of 1950s-style 3D movies. The film stars Tony Anthony, famous to us Spaghetti Western fans for the movie series in which he played a gunslinger called the Stranger. He appeared in others, as well, some reasonably good and others, like Blindman, so bad as to be virtually unwatchable.

Tony’s standout feature is the way he always looks like he’s ready to burst into tears, which always set him apart from the countless tough guys in Italo-Westerns. That feature stands him in good stead in Comin’ At Ya!

Tony Anthony

Tony Anthony IS Tinsley – I mean H. H. Hart – in Comin’ At Ya!

Anthony stars as gunfighter H.H. Hart. No, not H.H. Holmes, which would be an entirely different type of movie. Hart has, like many a fictional gunman, decided to leave his past behind and settle down with his one true love – a female gambler called Abilene aka the Cajun Queen. Abilene is portrayed by European actress Victoria Abril.

On their wedding day, H.H. and Abilene are separated when the ceremony is crashed by a gang of white-slavers led by brothers Pike and Polk Thompson. Our story inverts the setup of Louis L’Amour’s western The Shadow Riders, in which two brothers who fought on opposite sides of the Civil War set aside their differences to recover female family members from white-slavers headed for Mexico. 

In Comin’ At Ya! it’s the villains who are such a pair of brothers. Pike served on the Union side and Polk on the Confederate side. The duo command an enormous gang made up of veterans from both sides of the war in addition to renegade Indians and Mexican pistoleros. They steal the lovely Cajun Queen from her new husband and add her to the rest of their haul of young women to sell into slavery down in 1870s Mexico.

comin at ya - cinema quad movie poster (1).jpgOur main character, Triple H, ain’t havin’ it and sets out to recover his new bride and set free the other unfortunate women seized by the Thompson Gang. Needless to say he’ll also kill every member of the gang as well as some of the snobbish, upper-class Mexican aristos – male and female – who buy the ladies at an elegantly-appointed mansion/ former convent now used for slave auctions.

Even though this is really just a Spaghetti Western, albeit with slightly better production values, releasing a film titled Comin’ At Ya! clearly means you want it to stand or fall purely on its gimmick: 3D. First I’ll address the 3D effects and then examine the movie as a whole. Continue reading

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NANG-GAI: A GOD OF FIJI

FOR BALLADEER’S BLOG’S LOOK AT OVER TWENTY MORE FIJIAN GODS CLICK  HERE 

Fiji 2NANG-GAI – Yet another son of Ndengei. Nang-Gai served as the supreme deity’s messenger or emissary. When the sound of the waves crashing on the Rakiraki reefs made so much noise that it was preventing Ndengei from sleeping he sent Nang-Gai to silence it. To this day the surf off Rakiraki is notoriously quiet.

The bats near Rakiraki were also too loud for Nedengei’s liking and the messenger god was sent to coerce them into silence as well. When the birds at Nathilau started making too much noise Nang-Gai was sent to order them to leave the area at night and only visit it during the day.

Once while chasing away yet another hindrance to his father’s comfortable sleep, the god accidentally lost his war-club in the waters off the Fijian island of Naithombothombo. Continue reading

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NJCAA3 CHAMPIONS CROWNED, NAIA AND OTHER WORLD SERIES’ CONTINUE

NJCAA DIVISION THREE

Cumberland County College DukesCHAMPIONSHIP GAME: The 3 seeds – the CUMBERLAND COUNTY COLLEGE DUKES – faced the top seeded ROWAN COLLEGE AT GLOUCESTER COUNTY ROADRUNNERS. The Dukes put the Roadrunners on Upset Alert immediately by grabbing a 6-0 lead in the 1st Inning.

That became a 7-2 advantage by the 3rd Inning and 8-4 to end the 5th. From there each team drove in 3 additional Runs as Cumberland County College won the game by a final tally of 11-7. Michael Miles pitched for 9 Iron Man Innings for the victors. * THE DUKES ARE CHAMPIONS OF NJCAA DIVISION THREE BASEBALL *

NAIA

USAO Drover newFIRST SEMIFINAL: This game pitted the 2nd seeded UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE & ARTS OF OKLAHOMA DROVERS against the top seeds – the TENNESSEE WESLEYAN COLLEGE BULLDOGS. After a scoreless 1st Inning the Drovers seized a 2-0 lead in the 2nd.

USAO converted that into a 5-0 advantage in the 3rd Inning but by the end of the 5th the Bulldogs had cut that to a 5-2 edge. The Drovers lead shrunk to 8-5 in the 7th Inning but Tennessee Wesleyan College could only muster 1 more Run the rest of the way to give USAO an 8-6 triumph. The winning Pitcher was Rudy Gonzalez. Continue reading

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THE RUINED BRUIN (1961): BAD MOVIE

Ruined BruinTHE RUINED BRUIN (1961) – Written and directed by THE John K McCarthy, The Ruined Bruin was another one of those late “nudie cuties” which would make modern audiences yawn and wince … But would no doubt REALLY excite Furries!

In the past Balladeer’s Blog has reviewed the closing years of the Nudie Cutie subgenre as it went through its final convulsions in the form of gimmicks, each one more absurd than the last. I’ve reviewed Nude on the Moon, The Naked Witch, Orgy of the Dead, Doctor Sex and others.

The Ruined Bruin features a bear – really a costumed man (Myron Griffin) – who escapes from the Los Angeles Zoo and, for no apparent reason than so this movie could be made, tries to romance assorted gorgeous half-nude ladies.

Despite their name the Nudie Cuties never featured full nudity. Toplessness and some butt-shots were all you got, with strategically and/or improbably placed branches, shrubs or rail fences covering pubic regions. Fans of Peter Sellers will remember the classic sendup of those nudie cuties that he worked into one of his Inspector Clouseau films.   

The appeal of these movies is barely understood today, when you can find any visual stimulation you want with just a few clicks on your keyboard but decades ago Nudie Cuties really packed ’em in.

At any rate Buddy the Bear (Griffin) escapes from the zoo and, equipped with his Boris and Natasha-level Russian accent for his voice-over, takes in the sight of plenty of beautiful women. When the first one rejects his advances (and no, I don’t know why a bear is interested in human women any more than I know why cartoon mice characters often woo female cats away from their feline arch-enemies) Buddy tries to transform himself into a human male. Continue reading

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TRANSGRESS WITH ME: MAY 30th

Time for another installment of Balladeer’s Blog’s political humor feature Transgress With Me:

Mascot with demo and repub headsTHE MUELLER REPORT DID NOT DO ANYTHING TO CLEAR ROBERT MUELLER OF ANY POTENTIAL FUTURE KIDDIE PORNOGRAPHY CHARGES. I WILL ANSWER NO QUESTIONS. THIS IS MY LAST STATEMENT ABOUT THE COWARDLY “MURKY” MUELLER, ONE OF AMERICA’S MOST NOTORIOUSLY CORRUPT PROSECUTORS.  

EVERY INDIVIDUAL IS A MINORITY OF ONE.

THE POPE IS NOTHING MORE THAN THE HEAD OF THE WORLD’S LARGEST CHILD MOLESTATION RING, YET HE THINKS HE’S FIT TO LECTURE THE REST OF US.

AMERICAN “EDUCATORS” (LMAO) FORFEITED ANY RIGHT TO RESPECT WHEN THEY BEGAN ABUSING THEIR POSITIONS TO FORCE THEIR POLITICAL OPINIONS UPON THEIR STUDENTS. AND WHEN THEY BECAME MORE LIKE CLERGY, FORCING THEIR SIMPLE-MINDED NOTIONS OF RIGHT AND WRONG UPON THEIR STUDENTS.

Robert Mueller surrenders

I HAVE NO STATEMENT TO MAKE REGARDING IF THIS PHOTO WAS TAKEN DURING AN ARREST OF ROBERT MUELLER FOR INDECENT EXPOSURE. I WILL ANSWER NO QUESTIONS IF HE WAS WEARING PANTS.

ACCUSED RAPIST AND ACCUSED SUBORNER OF PERJURY ROBERT MUELLER KEPT INNOCENT PEOPLE IN BOSTON IN PRISON FOR YEARS DURING THE WHITEY BULGER SCANDAL. MUELLER ALSO HAS THE FACE OF A CARTOON CHARACTER COMBINED WITH THE HEART AND SOUL OF A NAZI. HE’S ALSO A BOUGHT AND PAID FOR WHORE. I HAVE NO FURTHER STATEMENT TO MAKE AND I WILL ANSWER NO QUESTIONS.  Continue reading

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NAIA AND NJCAA WORLD SERIES: DAY FOUR IN BOTH

NAIA

georgia gwinnettDAY FOUR, GAME ONE: The first of three elimination games pitted the 5 seeds – the GEORGIA GWINNETT COLLEGE GRIZZLIES – against the 9th seeded BELLEVUE (NE) UNIVERSITY BRUINS. The Grizzlies took charge right away, grabbing a 3-0 1st Inning lead that became a 4-1 advantage in the 4th.

From there Georgia Gwinnett College outscored the Bruins 5-2 for a 9-3 triumph behind the pitching of Gregory Loukinen. Gregory was on the Mound for 9 Iron Man Innings.

USAO Drover newDAY FOUR, GAME TWO: In the 2 spot the UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE & ARTS OF OKLAHOMA DROVERS took on the 3 seeds – the Defending National Champion SOUTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY FIRE. A 4-0 Drovers lead in the 1st Inning turned into a Pitcher’s Duel for the next 4.

USAO expanded their lead to 5-0 in the 6th Inning but the Fire cut that to 7-4 in the 7th. The Drovers notched another Run on their way to an 8-4 dethronement of the champs. Jean Muntaner was the winning Pitcher. Continue reading

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FOOL KILLER: PART TWENTY-ONE: FOLLY, TEXAS – DECEMBER 31st, 1899

Balladeer’s Blog continues its examination of the many facets of Fool Killer lore. FOR PART ONE, INCLUDING THE HISTORICAL CONTEXT, CLICK HERE

Fool Killer picPART TWENTY-ONE: I’ll return to my look at the 1910-1917 and 1919-1929 version of the Fool Killer next time around. For this segment I’ll conclude the new Fool Killer Letter received here at Balladeer’s Blog from THE actual, supernatural entity himself. (SEE HERE ) This second part of that letter clarifies some of the Fool Killer’s hibernation periods AND details a heretofore UNKNOWN 1899 escapade of the supernatural vigilante.

(cont’d) Anyway, Mr Wozniak or Eddie or Balladeer or whatever you prefer to go by, that was how I came to be. And like I said, you’re no Charles Napoleon Bonaparte Evans or James Larkin Pearson but I’ve been a mighty long time without a confidant so you’ll do.

As you guessed, my ability to hibernate for years in my hidden cavern home, then emerge dressed in up to date men’s fashions is another unearthly characteristic I inherited from my Daddy, whatever he may really have been, damn him. While I sleep it’s like the changes in the world come to me as dreams, so I’m always aware of the alterations in the zeitgeist.

You probably noticed I never need to eat and the only thing I ever drink is alcohol. I don’t NEED to drink, but maybe my Mama’s heritage shines through with that, because one thing I truly love to slam down is good old American liquor. Preferably bourbon.

I had to smile at your feeble speculations regarding when exactly I returned to my cave to hibernate over the decades. Since you’re so all-fired obsessed with whens and wheres and hows, I’ll throw you a few crumbs here.

Sartana as Fool Killer 5After I drove my Daddy out of the Tennessee Hills I spent the rest of the 1830s and the early 1840s killing off any fools who tried mining or stealing the hidden gold of the Melungeons. During that same period the fools in Washington, DC started sending men into the mountains of Tennsessee, Kentucky, Virginia and North Carolina to stop the Melungeons from minting their own gold coins, so I took to exterminating those federal agents, too. “Counterfeiting” my ass!

But times changed, and the feds persevered in claiming the government in Washington were the only ones who could mint coins. I saw I’d only be bringing a war down on the heads of my Mama’s people the Melungeons if I kept killing federales so I let up on that. 

By the late 1840s I had decided to make a home out of the remote, now-abandoned cave where my Daddy used to ply his blacksmithing and other mystic trades. I moved in and settled down for my very first period of hibernation. I woke up just a bit short of 1850 and befriended Mr Charles Napoleon Bonaparte Evans at the Milton Chronicle in North Carolina.

After corresponding with him about my fool-killing vocation for over a decade I took my second nap in the summer of 1861 after telling Evans that I damned the fools of both the North and the South for bringing on that Civil War. As you know from the surviving letters I sent to Mr Evans I emerged from that hibernation in the late 1860s.

For several years I kept busy slaying, among others, Ku Klux Klan fools AND the Carpetbaggers from the North during Reconstruction. My walking stick – forged in my Daddy’s eldritch smithy and with its grinning skull headpiece made of fine Melungeon gold – killed plenty and my set of Bowie Knives drank the blood of many a fool as well.

cowboy gunsAnyway, you don’t need every damn detail, boy. Suffice it to say that around 1880 or ’81 I hibernated again, then pursued my new mission among the Melungeons, this time adding guns and rifles to my arsenal. After several years of that I slept again, then upon awakening I was drawn westward.

One day I’ll tell you all about the many fools I snuffed out in the old west. It’s a wonder I didn’t depopulate the entire region. For right now, however, I’ll recount an adventure that happened right before my next period of slumber.

Sartana as Fool KillerIn late December of 1899 I was traveling through west Texas, riding along in that wagon I had taken to using during my 1880s activities back among the Melungeons. In the summer of ’99 I had taken a brief return trip to the East and on my way back out west I had that run-in with the sinister, Infernal fair along the Old Pike Road in Alabama. The tale that George Ade wrote about.         

My destination was Folly, Texas. You can’t find it or what’s left of it now but back then it was southwest of Lubbock and almost right at the border of Texas and New Mexico. Texans of the time said nothing thrived in that part of the Lone Star State except cacti. Continue reading

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