March 25, 2014

Social Medi-ocre

Once again, I've been letting this blog gather dust. It's nothing personal, I promise.

I recently got a new phone, so I've been spending a lot of time at these places -

I had tried Twitter a couple of times over the past few years and never liked it. However, I am enjoying it more this time since the phone makes it so much easier to dash out some weird thought or post a photo. I've also mellowed out and become less concerned with whether people "like" my material or not. Now I just throw a bunch of nonsense out into the universe and see what sticks!

I recently shared my Lego Motel Hell with Scream Factory via Twitter in response to their announcement of an upcoming Blu-ray release of the film. They re-tweeted it and I got to witness my pic being "favorited" by a ton of people. I had never experienced anything like that before, so it felt really good.

Instagram has been great. It's gotten me back into taking random photos and I've discovered a great community of fellow horror movie lovers. It reminds me of how Flickr used to be back in the old days.

Pinterest is fun. It's a good time waster. I've especially had fun making my *Swoon* board...just go check it out.

Oh...and, by the way, how come I totally ignored this movie when I was a kid? I remember being bored by the VHS cover at the video store. 

I watched the trailer and blind bought the Blu-ray. I was not disappointed. Too many amazing things to list about this film. Just BUY IT already!

February 13, 2014

Lady Beware (1987)

Let's talk about a great movie that I don't think many people are aware of.

The recipe for it is really quite simple: Take a heaping spoonful of Fatal Attraction (which was actually released a month LATER), a few dollops of The Collector, sprinkles of Mannequin and wrap it up in a nice, cozy layer of "Skinemax". Bake at a million degrees, and you have:

Lady Beware.

I won't bore you with a synopsis. You can always look that up yourself....and, actually, the less you know about it, the better. Lady Beware is a lot of fun and Diane Lane really gets into her role. She's not always great, and at times, she's pretty terrible (her smoking is TOO obvious) but she has some great freak-out moments (the mirror scene) and she reaches a point of defiance that is really quite impressive - why aren't more drag queens inspired by this film?

Visually, everything is perfect - from the atmospheric Pittsburgh locations to the memorable production design. Diane Lane's loft apartment is pretty enviable, so you might just find yourself running out to purchase reams of Christmas lights and dozens of mannequins to decorate your home. I'm sure someone has a Lady Beware-inspired home somewhere in the world...right?

Trivia: It's important to note that Lady Beware was one of the first (if not the first) films of the legendary costume designer, Pat Field, who went on to fame and fortune with Sex and the City...although, it makes me laugh that her next project after this was He's My Girl.

I don't want to ruin anything for first time viewers, but here are a few other things to think about:
  • The moody, "erotic thriller"-style soundtrack. There is actually an official LP available. I have it, so why don't you go ahead and get one, too. They are always available on eBay. Great background music for crying in the bathtub.
  • The stereotypical, secondary gay character. Inspired by Mannequin? I had some problems with that guy.
  • Why does Diane Lane sometimes remind me of a young Kathleen Turner?
  • For Creepshow fans, the guy playing the grouchy curmudgeon who criticizes Diane's window display is famed Pittsburgh actor, Bingo O'Malley -  he played multiple roles in the Stephen King/"Jordy Verrill" segment. I thought that was pretty neat.
  • Come to think of it...a mash-up of Lady Beware and Mannequin would be pretty incredible. Emmy (Kim Cattrall) could have come to life and helped Katya (yes, Diane's character is named KATYA YARNO) during the climactic showdown.
  • I want to know why some sources say that Viveca Lindfors is in this movie? Yes, I care about these kind of things. I wonder who she would have played?
From Leonard Maltin's 2014 Movie Guide

February 12, 2014

Touching base.

Ahem. Testing. Hello?

Ah, yes, there you are. My apologies for being away for so long. No, no...I'm not mad at you. Things have been busy.

What? Oh. You've heard that one before. I see.

Well, to be honest...I've just neglected our relationship. You know how it can be. You don't?

I...let me finish, please. I need to explain, you see....what? What have I been up to?

Animal Crossing has still been a recurring object of entertainment in my home life...again, it's so incredibly relaxing, and after a long day at work and an even longer commute home, it's nice to just zone out. 

Have I watched anything? A few things here and there, but nothing life-changing...

...except for one thing. Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman

Years ago, I had a watched a few episodes from an earlier DVD release of the first 25 shows, but I gave up because I figured it was hopeless to get involved in a show that I would never, ever see the entire run of. Why bother investing your time in a few installments of a show that clocked a whopping 325 episodes! Flash forward: For my birthday, Hilly Blue got me the entire collection that was released by Shout Factory! and I haven't been the same since. Louise Lasser is absolutely, jaw-droppingly amazing. I had always been a fan of hers, but this blew my expectations out of the water. I'm speechless in my attempt at describing her performance in this role - equally strange, sympathetic, hilarious...her delivery is unique and completely and utterly exclusive to Louise Lasser. No one else in the world could play this role. What episode am I on? 147!

Music? Not much, really. But these two epics have been on constant repeat - Eartha Kitt, I Love Men and Pat Ast, Paul Jabara's Ocho Rios.

Let's see. Am I missing anything? Oh yes. Back in October, I finally saw the complete version of I Am Divine. It was great to finally see the finished piece after two years of research. I can't stress how much of a wonderful experience it was.

On that note, here is a hint at a new project that I'm working on. Fingers crossed that it pans out. Toodles for now!

Thanks to the terrific Josh McCullough for this amazing design!

October 23, 2013

Screw You My Zebra Stays

Jenny Holzer ain't got NOTHING on the artist known as Supernova23a:

More of Supernova23a's cryptic and postmodern messages can be FOUND HERE!

September 8, 2013

Bland Ambition: A Tribute to Paul and Mary

A couple of months ago I got a new tattoo by the wonderful Shay Cannon at Liberty Tattoo here in Atlanta.

This design is dedicated to two of my favorite people: Mary Woronov and Paul Bartel. The caricatures are by illustrator Bob Schulenberg from the album cover of the Eating Raoul LP soundtrack.

Paul and Mary have been my movie heroes for years. I like to pretend they are my Bizarro World, fantasy parents. In fact, most people that have seen this tattoo ask, "Are those your parents?" 

I just smile and say, "Why, yes, it is!"

July 21, 2013

Welcome to Zbornak

I love playing Nintendo's new Animal Crossing: New Leaf for the 3DS. I've been totally immersed in the game since I bought it a month ago. It's incredibly relaxing - there are wonderful characters to interact with, soothing music, fun and oddball tasks to accomplish and some often hilarious, surreal moments. It's the closest I've come to experiencing actual ZEN!

I've played the earlier versions, Wild World and City Folk, but New Leaf is clearly an improvement.

For anyone unfamiliar with the franchise, Animal Crossing isn't necessarily a "game". It's more of a simulated environment that is fully customizable and interactive. Basically, you create a town in which you move into and start to meet your fellow neighbors (all of which are jolly, anthropomorphic animals) and begin to create a life for yourself by running errands, collecting and buying items and paying off your home mortage in addition to a multitude of activities to participate in. My favorite is playing hide-and-seek with my neighbors!

The game has a nice feature that allows you to take screenshots whenever you want, so here are a few I've grabbed...

(By the way, the name of my town is Zbornak)

If you aren't careful, you can be attacked by killer bees.
Your friends can be moody, too.
This guy is great. He'll offer little bits of wisdom.
"the mange"
My Jason Voorhees look.
I caught him in the river! Notify Barbara Steele at once.
Visiting a friend's town.
Just sittin'.
They call me "pizza".
One of the things Animal Crossing is notorious for - the dreaded pitfall traps!

July 17, 2013

Desperate for Each Other

A few years ago I caught a wonderful TV movie from 1992 called Maid for Each Other. It stars Nell Carter as a feisty jazz singer and Dinah Manoff as a recently widowed socialite who decides to get a job and become a maid. To make a long story short, there is a murder and the two of them are on the run and desperate to solve the case! 

Dinah and Nell are fantastic together and it almost feels like the film is an attempt at a possible pilot. I could easily have imagined these characters getting their own series where they would become amateur detectives solving crimes every week.

While watching it, I came to a startling realization. I began to notice an uncanny resemblance to an earlier cult favorite - Desperate Living (1977)!

Here are a few examples...