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Archive for September, 2009|Monthly archive page

Grindhouse Releasing Screens ‘Cannibal Holocaust’, Fulci’s ‘The Beyond’ in October

In Exploitation, Grindhouse, Horror, Movies on September 25, 2009 at 12:43 am

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Here’s an update for horror and exploitation film fans on some of the work I’m doing with Grindhouse Releasing.

Director Lucio Fulci’s gory horror classic THE BEYOND wraps up a series of Canadian theatrical showings Oct. 8 at the Plaza Theatre in Calgary, as the headline attraction for Burning Moon Video‘s SPLATTERFEST ’09.

Rue Morgue magazine’s recent Cinemacabre screening at the Bloor Cinema featured a live-by-remote interview with composer Fabio Frizzi and an in-person appearance by his fellow BEYOND soundtrack musician Maurizio Guarini.

Cheers to Tyler Baptist, Dave Alexander and company at Rue Morgue, James at Vagrancy Films, Lee Demarbre, and Brenin at Burning Moon Video for keeping Fulci alive on the big screen.

Following the Canadian theatrical tour, Grindhouse Releasing’s restored, uncensored 35mm print of THE BEYOND screens Nov. 5 at Chicago’s Doc Films.

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CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST screens in three U.S. cities this month, starting Oct. 17 at the Enzian Theater in Maitland, Fla. The movie shows Oct. 23 at the Five Points in Jacksonville, Fla., and then plays Halloween weekend Oct. 30 – Nov. 1 at the new Burton Theater in Detroit.

As recently seen in Premiere, CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST continues to top critics’ lists of the most controversial films ever made. Grindhouse applauds the promoters and theater managers with the guts to show this movie in its completely uncut, disturbing entirety!

To inquire about screening Grindhouse Releasing films in your theater, e-mail info@grindhousereleasing.com.

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Thanks to readers for the positive response about the upcoming special edition DVD release of S.F. Brownrigg’s SCUM OF THE EARTH.

On Oct. 15, the Dallas Producers Association will honor the late S.F. “Brownie” Brownrigg and other local movie-biz personalities at “It Came from Dallas!”, the latest in a series of tributes to homegrown Texas schlock cinema. The SCUM OF THE EARTH trailer will screen along with other regional B-movie rarities.

Film archivist, writer and researcher Gordon K. Smith is one of the driving forces behind the event, assembling the clips and trailers that illustrate decades of Dallas movie-making. Gordon has been a knowledgeable and helpful source for the SCUM OF THE EARTH disc.

For more information, visit itcamefromdallas.blogspot.com.

More news, features, reviews and interviews coming soon!

– David Szulkin, HardFeelings.wordpress.com

The Official Heavy Metal Book Of Lists

In Uncategorized on September 24, 2009 at 7:46 pm

Congrats to veteran sex, drugs and r0ck ‘n’ roll writer Eric Danville, who landed the dream job of putting together The Official Heavy Metal Book of Lists. With a foreword by Lemmy, this amazing new compendium is aptly described as “the heaviest book of all time!” and “the Spinal Tap of books!”

I’m honored and grateful to be among the contributors. My entry covers the heavy sounds of the early ’70s, including Sir Lord Baltimore, Captain Beyond, Dust, Cactus, Bloodrock, and other proto-metal bands.

From Amazon.com: “Part rock trivia contest, part encyclopedia of excess, The Official Heavy Metal Book of Lists features over 150 lists that chronicle rock and roll’s most enduring genre. Ever wanted to know the names of Alice Cooper’s snakes? The names of Spinal Tap’s dead drummers? Which metal stars have made celebrity sex tapes? Get ready to be thrown headfirst into a mosh pit of wacky, wild, and weird lists from metal’s hardest-hitting stars – members of Motorhead, Sepultura, Guns N’ Roses, Vixen, Biohazard, Whitechapel, Deathklok, and GWAR are among the heavyweights who cast their ballots herein (not to mention porn stars, Air Guitar champs, and the director of Heavy Metal Parking Lot).”

Former High Times and Screw editor Danville is also the author of The Complete Linda Lovelace, a comprehensive and insightful bio of the X-rated superstar. Publisher Backbeat Books also offers The Official Punk Rock Book of Lists by bestselling Book of Lists co-author Amy Wallace and Handsome Dick Manitoba of The Dictators.

Look for The Official Heavy Metal Book of Lists in stores, or order online at this link. Guaranteed addictive reading!

Black Devil Doll

In Exploitation, Grindhouse, Horror, Movies, Uncategorized on September 4, 2009 at 5:53 pm

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Filmed in Negroscope and featuring “totally awesome scenes of rape and murder,” BLACK DEVIL DOLL is the #1 HARD FEELINGS film of 2009.

Straight off its U.S. theatrical tour and successful exhibition at Cannes, the Lewis Brothers film is now a paperback novel by Stephen Romano, author of SHOCK FESTIVAL and THE RIOT ACT.

Romano also designed the eye-popping BLACK DEVIL DOLL poster art and other promotional graphics for producer Shawn Lewis of Rotten Cotton. The book is available now in advance of the October DVD release.

Here’s my review of the flick:

RATED X BY AN ALL-WHITE JURY

The Lewis Brothers start a riot in “Black Devil Doll”

By David A. Szulkin

The production cost of BLACK DEVIL DOLL breaks down to one puppet, five reasonably priced nude females, one hundred jugs of Karo syrup, miscellaneous pharmaceuticals, and $10,000 in Oakland Fried Chicken. The results pay off like a Powerball jackpot.

BLACK DEVIL DOLL is the first film from The Lewis Brothers, the boldest young filmmakers to emerge from the horror genre since Frank Henenlotter and Stuart Gordon. Some film nerds have pegged the movie as a remake of Chester Turner’s 1984 straight-to-video feature BLACK DEVIL DOLL FROM HELL, but the new movie shares only the most obvious surface elements with Turner’s flick.

“It’s our homage to all of the killer doll films,” says producer Shawn Lewis. “We watched a lot of those movies, and none of them went all the way, so we decided to make the movie we always wanted to see. Actually, we didn’t make the puppet black until we wrote the fourth draft of the screenplay.”

The movie opens with black militant Mubia Abul-Jama (Jonathan Lewis) marching down Death Row to be executed for his crimes against Caucasian society. Just as Jama rides the lightning, bored and busty Heather (Heather Murphy) unwittingly transports his soul into the body of a ventriloquist’s dummy during a Ouija board séance.

Mubia demonstrates the power of his miniature pimp hand and other appendages in a triple-X rated puppet romance montage. But this muthafuckin’ puppet needs some strange. Some trim. Some fresh. white pussy. While Mubia commands Heather to round up her bimbo girlfriends, her jilted wannabe rapper boyfriend White-T (Martin Boone) seeks revenge.

What follows is a relentless, abusive, and uproarious onslaught of rape, misogyny, mutilation, mayonnaise, mass murder, sodomy, toilet humor and racially charged puppet hijinks. The movie’s many freak-out sequences were filmed in Negroscope, a patented process which visualizes the puppet’s psychosis in a multi-layered, psychedelic blur of Black History Month flashbacks.

From the puppet’s first demonic eyeball-roll to the mind-melting, sphincter-shattering climax, BLACK DEVIL DOLL delivers the total package to your door…and says “FUCK YOU!” when you sign for it. Eruptions of H.G. Lewis-style gore, Russ Meyer-like breasts, graphic necrophilia, salad-tossing, and the funniest prison-rape joke in recent memory are just a few highlights; the actors rightly allow the wooden doll to upstage them, and the original soundtrack by Giallo’s Flame completes the atmosphere.

It’s no surprise that BLACK DEVIL DOLL has pissed off politically correct crackers and uptight Uncle Toms alike.

The film’s trailer alone was enough to offend a Tampa film critic, who wrote, “I hope my subconscious mind creates a split personality to deal with this, because I don’t want to have that stuff in my head for the rest of my life.”

Another advance review labeled director Lewis “a self-hating Negro,” while KING magazine called the film “heartless” and “foul”.

None other than the Rev. Al Sharpton weighed in with a personal condemnation when a fan pressed him for comment.

“It’s a shame individuals in our society have regressed to such standards of racial lambasting in favor of the lowest common denominator of entertainment for the mass public,” Sharpton said.

The Lewis Brothers responded by naming their production company Lowest Common Denominator Entertainment.

During the film’s world premiere at L.A.’s New Beverly Cinema, emcee Uncle Creepy hurled oversized black dildos into the sold-out crowd while director Jonathan Lewis smiled serenely. The audience went wild.

More Florida controversy soon spread as St. Petersburg Times film critic Steve Persall protested the exhibition of BLACK DEVIL DOLL, lambasting the film, and attacking its shameless creators in a morally outraged column. Persall had not seen the movie.

The Lewis Brothers had the last laugh. The mighty fist of the Black Devil Doll raised a triumphant middle finger of defiance at Cannes, as the film met with enthusiastic response and sold to foreign territories where the mack-daddy puppet’s every obscene utterance will be dubbed into several languages for the enjoyment of audiences around the world.

Soul on ice? The Black Devil Doll is on fire! Long may his magic chocolate wand wave, and deep may he thrust into your honky soul.

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BLACK DEVIL DOLL is now available for pre-order at Amazon.com.

Be sure to visit BLACK DEVIL DOLL babes Heather and Natasha on Facebook, and listen online to The Boone Brothers.

Scum of the Earth

In Exploitation, Grindhouse, Horror, Movies on September 1, 2009 at 4:32 am

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I’ve been strangely obsessed with the horror films of producer/director S.F. “Brownie” Brownrigg since I first saw his 1973 insane asylum classic Don’t Look in the Basement. Back in the ’80s, I called Brownie at his Dallas headquarters and interviewed him about his career for Fangoria magazine. Years later, I began working on a book about Brownie and the weird world of Texas exploitation movies.

During that research, I acquired the rights to Brownie’s follow-up to Basement: Scum of the Earth (a.k.a. Poor White Trash Part II). I’m happy to report that Scum of the Earth will be available on DVD and Blu-ray disc in early 2010, with new bonus features. Here’s an advance press release with more information:

BOX OFFICE SPECTACULARS TO RELEASE ‘SCUM OF THE EARTH’

Filthy Backwoods Horror, Presented in SCUM-VISION!

Box Office Spectaculars is preparing a special edition DVD release of SCUM OF THE EARTH, the notorious redneck exploitation hit from cult horror director S.F. Brownrigg (DON’T LOOK IN THE BASEMENT).

SCUM ranked among the top-grossing nationwide movies in Boxoffice and Variety when it played in 1976 as POOR WHITE TRASH PART II. Armed guards were stationed at theaters to shield minors from the “abnormal” subject matter, and audiences were warned that “this film captures poor white trash in their natural habitat.”

Noted for his ability to create creepy ambience on a low budget, Brownrigg has been called “one of the great forgotten men of exploitation cinema.”

SCUM OF THE EARTH is thick with a foul atmosphere of dirt and rot-gut whiskey, a sordid Southern Gothic family portrait framed in a primitive backwoods stalk-and-slash story that predates FRIDAY THE 13TH, HALLOWEEN, and THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE.

On a romantic vacation at a lakeside cabin in Texas, pretty city gal Helen Fraser (Norma Moore) flees into the forest after a lurking, unseen psycho slays her husband with an axe. Lost and panicked, she runs into Odie Pickett (Gene Ross), the mean, moonshine-swilling father to a degenerate clan of hillbillies.

Helen winds up trapped in Pickett’s isolated rural shack, cruelly violated and exposed to the family’s wretched life of white-trash poverty, abuse and perversion. Meanwhile, the maniacal killer stalks the woods, striking again and again…

SCUM OF THE EARTH was restored from rotted, decayed drive-in movie reels, the only surviving elements of the picture. This new release uses the patented “Scum-Vision” process to preserve every filthy frame of film in true 1080p high definition – as it’s never been seen before, on DVD and Blu-ray disc.

The new DVD documents the making of SCUM OF THE EARTH with rare photos, lost footage, artwork, commentary, and interviews with the film’s cast and crew. Paying tribute to Texas trash cinema, the package also includes the complete screenplay for DON’T LOOK IN THE BASEMENT and other surprises!

David Szulkin, author of WES CRAVEN’S LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT: THE MAKING OF A CULT CLASSIC, produced the new, restored version of SCUM OF THE EARTH with Box Office Spectaculars founder Bob Murawski, acclaimed Hollywood film editor of Sam Raimi’s DRAG ME TO HELL and SPIDER MAN 1, 2 & 3.

Box Office Spectaculars has released deluxe DVD editions of such gorehound movie classics as PIECES, I DRINK YOUR BLOOD and Lucio Fulci’s CAT IN THE BRAIN. The label is an offshoot of Grindhouse Releasing, the company responsible for THE BEYOND, CANNIBAL FEROX and the controversial smash CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST.

Viewer testimonials on SCUM OF THE EARTH from IMDb.com:

“This made me feel grimy all over….filthy, sleazy and sickening.”

“A distinct atmosphere, probably found nowhere else. Raw, crude, politically incorrect horror.”

“Delivers some of the funniest hillbilly dialogue in the history of cinema, great characters, and a smidgen of rape, incest and murder. It’s difficult to resist the film’s sleazy exploitation charms.”

“A lost gem…a must for any fan of the backwoods.”

See the trailer at www.GrindhouseReleasing.com!