Tag Archives: blogging

BIGFOOT (1970): BAD MOVIE REVIEW

Bigfoot 1970BIGFOOT (1970) – Bikers battle Sasquatch!This neglected landmark in Golden Turkey history unites nearly all the bad movie Mafia from the American Southwest in the 1960s and 70s and throws in Haji, Doodles Weaver and a few Mitchums for good measure.

Hell, I could swear one of the planes from Skydivers and Red Zone Cuba shows up as well. (Look at the FAA registration number)

This movie’s crowning choice in casting finds Balladeer’s Blog’s old buddy John “He’s probably even in the Zapruder Film if you look hard enough” Carradine along for the ride. Continue reading

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COLLEGE BASKETBALL: BALLADEER’S BLOG’S RANKINGS

Indiana East Red WolvesNAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) DIVISION TWO – 1. INDIANA UNIVERSITY-EAST RED WOLVES    ###    2. CORNERSTONE UNIVERSITY GOLDEN EAGLES    ###    3. SOUTHWESTERN COLLEGE MOUNDBUILDERS    ###    4. COLLEGE OF IDAHO COYOTES    ###    5. INDIANA TECH WARRIORS    ###   

bethel pilots NEW6. BETHEL (IN) COLLEGE PILOTS    ###    7. NORTHWESTERN (IA) COLLEGE RED RAIDERS    ###    8. INDIANA UNIVERSITY SOUTHEAST GRENADIERS    ###    9. SAINT THOMAS UNIVERSITY (FL) BOBCATS    ###    10. SOUTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY FIRE    ###    Continue reading

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THE THAMES VALLEY CATASTROPHE (1884): ANCIENT SCIENCE FICTION

London in ruinsTHE THAMES VALLEY CATASTROPHE (1884) – Written by Grant Allen. The story is presented in the form of a memoir about the destruction of London as seen from “the futuristic” 20th Century.  

“Back” in 1884 a Londoner familiar with lava eruptions and flows that happened in the American West in the past tries – in what would become a trope of later disaster movies – to warn the authorities that danger lurks. Needless to say his warnings go unheeded and lava erupts in the Thames Valley. Continue reading

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FEVER LAKE (1997): THIS TURKEY IS NOT WHAT IT SEEMS

Fever Lake 1FEVER LAKE (1997) – I like to think of this hilariously lame horror film as Twin Peaks 90210. I sometimes toy with I Was A Teenage Shining but that mock title only applies to isolated parts of Fever Lake. Overall, I think the creative team was trying for an imitation Twin Peaks vibe, especially given the time period in which it was made.

This little honey was released theatrically in Europe during 1996 but direct-to-video here in the U.S. during 1997. The credits even refer to much of the movie being shot in the town of Twin Lakes so for all I know that name might have provided spontaneous inspiration for the director or in the way of rewrites.

Fever Lake 2I’ll elaborate on that point in a bit, but for right now I’ll point out the enjoyable kitsch-casting that elevates this turkey slightly above other such dismal efforts. Corey Haim, one-half of the Haim-Feldman Colony Creature, stars as college student Albert. Saved By The Bell‘s Mario Lopez co-stars as college student Steve.

Yes, this is one of those flicks in which NONE of the top dozen or so stars play a character with a last name, except for good old Bo Hopkins the sheriff, who gets no FIRST name. Yet very, very minor characters get full names like “Bud Martin” and “Harry Kemp.” All my fellow lovers of Bad Movies have been there before.

Fever Lake serves up the usual assortment of horny students – all of whom seem fresh from Beverly Hills 90210 – staying at a creepy lakeside house provided by Corey Haim. The filmmakers actually seem to think we viewers won’t immediately realize that he’s the little boy who witnessed the murders in that house during the pre-credits flashback scene.   Continue reading

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TRANSGRESS WITH ME: JANUARY 13th

Mascot with demo and repub headsBalladeer’s Blog presents another edition of Transgress With Me.

*** REPUBLICAN TRASH LIKE PAUL RYAN STILL DON’T UNDERSTAND THE FACT THAT PEOPLE WHO CROSSED PARTY LINES TO VOTE FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP HAVE NOT BECOME REPUBLICANS. WHEN TRUMP – OUR FIRST DE FACTO THIRD PARTY PRESIDENT – IS GONE, NO POLITICIAN WITH AN “R” AFTER THEIR NAME WILL BE WORTH VOTING FOR, BARRING BIG CHANGES TO THEIR PARTY.

*** DEMOCRATS STILL POMPOUSLY THINK THAT POINTING OUT THE WESTERN WORLD’S FLAWS MAKES THEM EXEMPT FROM THE GUILT THEY TRY TO INFLICT ON THE REST OF US. 

*** THE AMERICAN LEFT IS STILL FIGHTING A VERSION OF AMERICA WHICH HASN’T EXISTED FOR DECADES.

*** THE DEMOCRAT MEDIA’S SLOGAN APPARENTLY IS “WHAT WE SAY IS HAPPENING IN THIS COUNTRY IS MUCH MORE IMPORTANT THAN WHAT IS ACTUALLY HAPPENING IN REAL LIFE.” Continue reading

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CRATES: ANCIENT GREEK COMEDY

Balladeer’s Blog takes another look at the surviving fragments of an ancient Greek comedian, in this case Crates.

CratesCRATES – Crates’ career spanned from approximately the 450s B.C. to the 430s B.C. We have fragments from nine or ten comedies from an unknown total output. From other sources we know that comedies as stage productions began sometime around 500 B.C. or earlier so Crates came fairly early to the artform.

Crates was credited with being the first Athenian comic poet (the comedies were written in verse and included songs) to introduce drunken characters, still a comic staple over 2,400 years later. Aristotle himself credited Crates as being the first to abandon the “glorified comic monologues” approach of the oldest comedies and introducing fleshed-out plots and storylines.

Be that as it may, there is still a great deal of academic arguing over whether or not Crates’ work simply reflected the influence of Epicharmus, who may well have been the TRUE innovator.

Crates was supposedly an actor before he began writing comedies (But I’m sure he really wanted to direct. – rimshot – ) and his brother was Epilycus, one of the Epic Poets. Eusebius’ Chronicles stated that Crates was a well-known comedian by 451 B.C. and Demetrius Lacon in his work On Poetry indicates that Crates may have acted in some of Aeschylus’ tragedies before switching genres. 

KNOWN WORKS 

NeighborsNEIGHBORS – We do not have even a hypothetical year for this work, unfortunately. Since titles sometimes referred to the all-important Chorus of a Greek comedy there is speculation that the chorus members were “Neighbors” of some sort (Duh!) but nothing is known about the plot.

 Athenaeus argued that Crates’ use of a drunken character in this comedy PRE-DATED Epicharmus’ use of stage drunks, so apparently even back in ancient times this was being debated.   

The closest thing to an intact joke from the fragments of Neighbors is a lecherous reference to the delectable young males and females on hand serving whatever feast was being celebrated in the comedy. For today you could insert a Harvey Weinstein or Kevin Spacey type of joke, I guess.

The next closest thing to an intact joke is a possibly wry reference to ” playing at pessoi” which could refer both to pebbles used in a board game and pebbles used to wipe one’s bottom after defecation. Since the ancient Greek comedies are LOADED with scat jokes it’s possible that a very grotesque mix-up occurred.

Other fragments from this comedy are virtually useless: “I do not possess a lampstand.” … “You must be quiet and not make a sound.” … “And had an aroma like sweetest myrrh.” … “If you’re smart, boy” … “A pig through roses” … “You led astray” … and “Scooping out a trough.”  Continue reading

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MY COUSIN’S AIRSHIP (1902): ANCIENT SCIENCE FICTION

My Cousin's AirshipMY COUSIN’S AIRSHIP, A TALE OF 1950 (1902) – Written by W.F. Alexander. Though written in 1902 this story is set in a fictional 1950 which has seen incredible scientific advances.

The action begins in England, where our narrator lives with his true love Margaret. His cousin Stephen Rankin – a former rival for Margaret’s affections – is a nasty mean-spirited mad scientist figure.

Stephen has invented a new type of aerocar which can travel 45 miles per hour, which we readers are told makes it the fastest aircraft of 1950. (!) As a peace-making gesture the inventor invites our narrator along for a joyride in the airship. Continue reading

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