Regular readers of Balladeer’s Blog are very familiar with my Bad Movie page. Laughing at bad and weird movies is one of the great joys of life so I often post holiday-themed looks at cinematic turkeys around Halloween and Thanksgiving.
The Yuletide season has its fair share of turkeys as well, so enjoy this examination of more Christmas season bombs than even Henry Kissinger ever dreamed of. I will exclude overexposed movies like Santa Claus Conquers the Martians and the Mexican film Santa Claus. Visit my Bad Movie page if you want full-length reviews of the following 14 flicks.
THE CHRISTMAS MARTIAN (1971) – This Canadian flick is dubbed into English from its orginal French so viewers get treated to the Old School bad movie fun of the actor’s lip movements rarely matching the words being said. An annoyingly whimsical and whacky Martian gets stuck in Canada at Christmas time. A young brother and sister help the alien visitor repair his Ed Wood- level spaceship and save him from suspicious Canadian authorities. Yes, it all seems … reminiscent … of the much-later movie E.T. but I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that E.T. is so similar. (?)
The Martian overdoes the zaniness factor to such a degree that even Charles Nelson Reilly would have told him to tone it down a little. He also wallows in a Canadian candy treat that looks a lot like Reese’s Pieces. Just sayin’.
SANTA AND THE ICE CREAM BUNNY (1972) – Ever want to see Santa Claus sweating so much that his red pants cling to his butt tightly enough for his crack and each buttock to stand out wide and proud? THIS is the movie for you! (And please stay away from children.) Santa’s sleigh crash-lands in Continue reading
Blood Freak (1972)
For Thanksgiving time Balladeer’s Blog often gives shout-outs to bad movies and hilariously lame educational shorts that have a specific Thanksgiving theme. As always my Bad Movie page contains full-length reviews of the films I’m offering a brief synopsis of here.
BLOOD FREAK (1972) – This movie is about a man who turns into a murderous monster with the head of a turkey after he eats a chemically treated gobbler at the turkey farm where he works. Blood Freak has been a cult classic for Thanksgiving for decades now, with many Movie Host shows of the late 70’s onward making a point of screening it at this time of year (including The Texas 27 Film Vault). The biker who turns into the blood-crazed turkey monster is Continue reading
Here at Balladeer’s Blog we wring down the curtain on Halloween 2017 by revisiting our old friend Jose “Mojica” Marins, Brazil’s notorious King of Horror.
Marins’ most famous character is Ze do Caixao aka Coffin Joe, a figure who belongs alongside Dracula, Freddy Krueger, La Llorona and other horror icons from around the world.
Noteworthy movies include :
At Midnight I’ll Take Your Soul (1963) – Brazil’s first-ever home-grown horror film was also the very first appearance of Coffin Joe, an undertaker who relishes exploiting and mocking the religious beliefs of the community.
The transgressive, hypnotic figure lords it over those he considers to be ignorant peasants and lesser beings. Ze’s reign of terror sees him inflict physical and psychological torture on his victims, including gouging their eyes out with his incredibly long fingernails.
The vile but charismatic monster is searching for a superior woman to mate with while killing off male rivals as well as women who don’t meet his expectations.
This Night I Will Possess Your Corpse (1967) – In this sequel Coffin Joe is even more powerful and depraved as he subjects Sao Paulo to another reign of terror. Ze is still searching for the perfect woman to bear his child and inflicting all manner of torture on his victims but this time around the viewer is treated to even more of the villain’s bizarre philosophy, which seems to be composed of equal parts Nietzsche and de Sade with a healthy sprinkling of Aleister Crowley tossed in.
This film is black & white like the original but features the acclaimed color portion featuring a trip to a Hell ruled by Coffin Joe himself. Continue reading
By reader request here’s my semi-regular Halloween Season blog post Zombies of Monticello, my mock movie review. I first ran this in 2013, but it may not seem as irreverent this year in the wake of the large-scale criticism of Thomas Jefferson.
ZOMBIES OF MONTICELLO (2013) – Halloween month continues at Balladeer’s Blog with this review of cult director Eddie Wozniak’s blood-soaked combination of horror and commentary.
Learn the REAL cause of Thomas Jefferson’s death on July 4th, 1826! On the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence the zombified corpses of all of Jefferson’s dead slaves rise from their graves and besiege him and his extended family in the Jefferson mansion at Monticello!
The pompous hypocrite who penned noble words about freedom and equality while OWNING other human beings tries everything to wipe out the undead legions pressing in on all sides. Continue reading
FRANKENSTEIN’S ARMY (2013) – Halloween Month continues here at Balladeer’s Blog with this odd mish-mash of a film. Frankenstein’s Army is one of those horror movies which is presented as Found Footage for no reason and even though it’s set during World War 2 it’s being filmed in color for no reason at all and it’s being filmed by a Russian film crew for ABSOLUTELY no reason at all.
Okay, to be serious I will admit that having the story told from the perspective of a Russian army unit is a nice novelty. I think most viewers are pleased that they don’t have to endure yet another group of armed American stereotypes fighting a war while bantering with each other.
It’s the closing weeks of the war in the European Theater of Combat and our Soviet soldiers are on a secret mission to extract Dr Victor Frankenstein, the latest mad scientist descendant of that infamous family. Little do they know they’re in for a nightmarish battle against re-animated, refitted and mechanized corpses even stranger than Herbert West’s creations.
Dr Frankenstein has been doing experiments for the Germans, working on those Top Secret “wonder weapons” that Hitler and his propogandists kept reassuring the suffering German civilians about. Stalin wants our heroes to determine the nature of Frankenstein’s creations and take him into custody to continue his work for the blood-soaked Soviet dictator.
You’d think the camera crew would be along to film ONLY Frankenstein’s work but no, they film EVERYTHING, making this yet another Found Footage flick to piss away its pacing with interludes that are as dull as real life. There are some decent renderings of the nearly post-apocalyptic German countryside but the color footage reveals how inauthentic the movie’s Russian and German uniforms are. Continue reading
FRIDAY THE 13th: THE ORPHAN (1977) – H.H. Munro must have turned over in his grave at this adaptation of one of his short stories. This quasi-horror film was re-released in 1979 as just The Orphan and despite the original title it has no connection to the Friday the 13th series of slasher flicks. At least, no REAL connection. I’m surprised some unscrupulous distributor never tried sneaking this into theaters in the 1980’s as a “prequel” to the slasher movies by presenting the insane young boy in the movie as the grandfather of Jason Voorhees.
Even so the title makes it hard not to think of our wealthy young protagonist “David” (Mark Owens) as an ancestor of the hockey- masked slice and dice man from Crystal Lake. In the 1920’s David’s mother accidentally shoots his African Big Game Hunter father Kevin to death during an argument about his frequent overseas trips. David not only witnesses this but sees his mother put the gun in her mouth and kill herself immediately afterward.
Next David gets VERY disturbed when a presumed family member (an uncredited Christopher Lloyd in a “blink-and-you’ll- miss- him” appearance) forces him to kiss his dead father as he lies in his coffin. Continue reading