Archive for the 'reviews' Category

23
Oct
12

pissingblood’s grindhouse classic review: Flash Gordon (1980)

Although not at all a Grindhouse flick, or even widely considered a B-Grade film surprisingly – it does fit rather nicely in to my trash sci-fi collection. I do have to admit though that – despite the wooden performances by the cast, the low-budget special effects, and the not-so-subtle fetish and bondage gear – the only reason this isn’t thought of as a B-grade exploitation film is because Queen were responsible for the pretty amazing title song and music throughout. I guess that’s enough really… And before you ask, yes, the re-watching of this film and subsequent review was brought about by Ted. Now on with the review!

Flash Gordon is a harrowing tale that highlights the plight of the Lizard-Men of Mongo. (Not where you thought this was going was it?)

The Lizard-Men are easily the most oppressed people in the galaxy, maybe even the universe. The first example of the cruel and inhumane treatment of the downtrodden Lizard-Men comes soon after Flash Gordon , Dale and Professor Zarkov crash-land and are taken prisoner by Ming’s forces. The unwitting space adventurers are led to the Emperor’s Palace where a Lizard-Man, apparently being held captive is disintegrated before the earthlings very eyes for trying to escape. No trial, no just cause, just turned to atoms. This is only the first of many examples of the cruelty endured by the Lizard-Men of Mongo that we could find.

In Ming’s throne room all the different people of Mongo are in attendance, there to pay fealty to Emperor Ming. The obvious absence of any Lizard-Men party goes seemingly unnoticed and unchallenged by any of the other native Peoples. Not even by the Hawk-Men, the only other Mongoloid race who somewhere along the line got it on with an animal. After Flash makes a daring attempt to escape Ming’s soldiers using an American Football inspired style of fighting, is he then sentenced to death, Dale is to be added to Ming’s harem and become his sexual play thing, (Banging aliens is cool but he can’t treat Lizard-Men with any kind of decency? What the fuck, Ming?) and the Prof’s mind is to be wiped to become a slave or something.

In the dungeon, we see yet more Lizard-Men imprisoned behind bars, while Flash is being held in a rather compromising position barely clothed… This is where you start to get the feeling that the film is more sinister than just the persecution of Lizard-Men…

Flash Gordon, 1980, Sam Jones

With the intervention of Ming’s own daughter, Princes Aura, Flash is saved. His execution is staged and along with Aura escapes to the Arboria the kingdom of the Tree Men ruled by Prince Barin who also happens to one Aura’s apparently many lovers. The trend of sexual deviancy runs in the Ming family, I guess. Although now alive, Barin out of jealousy sticks Flash in a cage suspended in the Arborian swamps. There in the watery cell, Flash shares the cage with a Hawk-Man and two Lizard-Men who are forced to hold themselves above the slime and mud or drown. How the Lizard-Men came to even be in Arboria is a mystery, yet there they are, once more prisoners. Flash is even party to the wholesale discrimination against the reptilians as he helps the Hawk-Man but leaves the Lizard-Men to their own devices. Even when escaping Flash offers no help to the Lizard-Men. You would think for a man who carries the title of Saviour of The Universe that it would include all its inhabitants…

When all the people of Mongo are eventually set free thanks to Flash forging an alliance between the Tree Men and The Hawk-Men leading a revolt against Ming’s tyranny – not a fucking green-skinned humanoid in sight, I tell you! It’s a disgrace! For shame! For shame on you, Flash Gordon! For shame on all the Mongoloids who are party to persecuting the innocent Lizard-Men.

Now I know some denialists will jump at the chance to point out that the Flash Gordon film is not a complete and accurate depiction of life on Mongo. Yes that is true, but there are other examples of cruelty towards the whole Lizard-Man race even as far back as the comic strips from the 50’s!

Flash Gordon Comic Serial

3 counts of cruelty to Lizard-Men (which I am told were very easy to find!)

If you’re that sort of despicable, heartless cretin that can abide the sort of wholesale abuse on show in Flash Gordon you’d probably enjoy yourself to the point of re-watching the unadulterated 80’s cheese fest over and over again. There isn’t a moment in the film you won’t find something to revel in. Since you’re in to the abuse, you’ll probably note more than most the fetish and bondage gear that has been worked in to the sets and costume design. You’ll probably enjoy it so much you won’t be able to help but call up all your  sick friends and get them to come round so you can watch the slaughter and debasement of an entire species and then have a glorious BDSM orgy!

Melody Anderson, Dale arden, Flash Gordon

what is up with those guards masks?

Ornella Muti, Pete Wyngarde, Flash Gordon

not even trying to be subtle here!

If in the final scenes of the film the shot of Flash’s rocket ship crashing through the conveniently shaped window of Ming’s pink palace doesn’t plant the seed for some kind of penetration action at all… Even the most decent morally incorruptible of viewers can’t fight that kind of subliminal messaging. Even just looking at the screen shots again has got me feeling a bit funny… Look at the image below and tell me what you see!?

a phallic metal object flying in to a round pink hole? not a stretch of the imagination here, people…

06
Feb
12

pissingblood’s grindhouse classic review: thriller: a cruel picture

Most of the really good exploitation films are really nothing more than slightly embellished graphic depictions of the seedier side of life. It’s why showing them to the unprepared, middle class, white-bread-with-no-crust folk is fun… This movie goes by a few names, the two English titles being, Her Name Was One Eye, the censored version, or the more common title but less cool, Thriller: A Cruel Picture. Regardless what you call the film, it stars Christina Lindberg as the title character, who had a hand in convincing the rest of the world that Sweden was where hot woman were made in the 70’s… She also spends more than half of it barely clothed, which is nice.

they called her one eye, christina lindberg

It’s the age-old tale of a poor European girl tricked by an older, richer man into a life of drugs and prostitution. Instead of dying on the street from AIDs, or at the hands of a dude with an anger problem stemming from being inadequately endowed, she overcomes adversity and escapes the life of a lady of the night. Well, presumably… She uses her ill-gotten income, already a deviation from the tale I know, what exploited woman has disposable income? Anyway, showing off her personal finance skills, she saves up and hands over some serious cheddar for training in the martial arts, shooting lessons and advances driving classes on her days off. Yet another deviation. Do prostitutes get days off? Why would her day off be a Monday? It’s like she works at a restaurant… Still they are some quirky hobbies. Even for a country girl who was once headed for a simple life of milking cows and instead ended up getting a raw deal following the, no doubt, shiny allure of a greasy cunt in a sports car.

thriller:a cruel picture

yup... that's the only thing you have to say to get girls in your car in Sweden apparently

The plot isn’t as simple as that, obviously. One Eye, still known as Madeleine at this point, is mute after being raped as  a child by some dirty old beast. Being mute however may have just been a tactful decision by someone in charge to help the film not be completely ruined by a porn star stumbling through her lines. Madeleine’s folks spend all they can on getting her help after her ordeal. After missing the bus to her speech therapy session, she ends up meeting Tony, the stereotypical lecherous cat that lures innocents into a life of depravity. Tony forces Madeleine to get hooked on heroin and earning on her back. He also gives cause for her nickname after she attacks her first visitor. The scene in which it happens, its rumoured, the director procured a corpse to pull off. It only adds to the cringe factor when you sit and watch the scene. Dead or fake, it’s still an eyeball getting taken out. Hence, Madeleine becomes One Eye, and her spirit is finally broken and she soon gets her regulars. A pervert who likes to take photos, an ugly fat bastard who likes to put his peepee in places the sexually unadventurous deem “out-of-bounds” and a sadistic lesbian who can’t decide if she wants to make out or fight. Pretty different tastes, but they all like the taste of One Eye’s nubile tender flesh. One Eye does what woman do best, endures, and accessorizes… She collects quite an array of eye patches to match her outfits. One Eye eventually discovers that Tony inadvertently caused her parents suicides, by sending them a fake letter posing as Madeleine, which she discovered earlier in the film, and he kills her only friend in the film, Sally a fellow working girl. These two events break the hookers back, and One Eye goes on the offensive. Her off days from then on are spent becoming a killing machine with the singular goal of making motherfuckers pay for what they done.

From that point the film follows your standard revenge plot… One Eye offs the villains one by one eventually facing off with her original tormentor, Tony. No one can help cheering for One Eye while she fucks up pretty much everyone and everything that gets in her way of taking out the bastards that abused her. She messes up some cops and steals their car for their troubles and shoots up a truck for no real reason. It’s one of the films that really cemented the revenge flick genre formula that’s been done countless times with varying degrees of success, with budgets of varying sizes. This particular revenge movie is famously known for being one of Quentin Tarantino‘s favourites. One thing that stands out is the use of slow motion during the ultra violent shots. It’s pretty clear though that no one bothered to shoot a sawed off shotgun at something meaty to see what the resulting wound would actually looked like. If you’re a fan of the ol’ B-grade revenge films you’ll want to check this out. There are many reasons why it’s one of the biggest B-grade fan’s favourite film and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t the graphic sex montages… It’s haunting the way she just sits calmly in a picturesque field watching Tony get his head slowly pulled off. Something about the Swedes, they sure can come up with a sadistic revenge tale. Having read Stieg Larrson’s, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo series and the hectic shit his anti-heroin does to get back at her tormentors, makes cute little Swedish *flickor look like serious bad asses…

i'm no expert, but I'm pretty sure a shotgun shell to the forehead makes a bigger mess of your face...

*Swedish for, “girls”.
 
 
13
Dec
11

Columbus drew the Short Straw when he lost his ARV’s.

This review was actually meant for DIY, but thanks to my brain functionality and energy levels being ravaged by that crippling ailment called a job, I failed to get this in on time. Being that I’m not completely unhappy with it though, I’ll put it up here so it at least gets some reads, even if it is less than it should have been. Apologies to the bands, DIY and you poor fucks that actually wanted to read what I thought of the night…

On arriving at unit11 on Friday, I was worried about having agreed to this assignment… The members of Anti-Retro Vinyl’s were blocking the entrance like a bunch of bouncers.  Where I couldn’t help but notice their ridiculously fucking awesome dress sense. Leather jackets were clearly invented by the coolest motherfuckers to grace the planet. I challenge anyone to disagree. It’s like a glorious upper body covering of pure “Fuck You!” My appreciation for wearing animal skin was short-lived, because arriving at a gig where the only people present are the bands and their friends brought me back to the task set before me. I always arrive slightly late to gigs at least that way there are a few eager drinkers to act as buffers between me and the bands. I think the least interaction between myself and the musicians, is for the best. If I have anything negative to say, at least it won’t come out while I’m drunk and obnoxious and within punching distance. Musicians are so sensitive… So what if I hate your music? Fans aren’t swayed by reviews. They mostly entertain the people who already think you suck.

baby, ugly, cry, musicians, rockstars

this is what i picture when musicians throw a haffy

I hadn’t heard two of the bands, being that they’re from out-of-town and this was their first visit. I also hadn’t bothered to find out who was on when, so I was relieved when the first band did their introduction. I was watching Columbus. I enjoyed the kids who named their band after an Italian explorer who missed his target, and to cover it up renamed a people and spread his filthy religion along with the flu. I couldn’t fault the band’s performance, but the sound guy failed to do his job, because when the guitars were clearly meant to kick in, they stayed well in the back. Despite the sound issues the band managed to deliver a set that deserved a way bigger crowd. To me they were reminiscent of some drugged up 90’s Brit rock with unnecessary guitar breaks. A lot about them kind of said they’re a young band, they still walk awfully close to that line where, when crossed, could make them just another band trying to sound like the radio, and they didn’t seem totally convinced about what they sounded like themselves. I imagine they’d go well as an accompaniment to City Bowl Mizers, vocally they seemed very similar, but more angsty.

Columbus at unit11

Next was another band I didn’t recognise, so I safely assumed that it was Short Straw. If I had to say which SA band had impressed me the most that night, and maybe even this year, I’d have to say it was these guys. Sure they’re doing what a lot of other bands are doing, that indie, folksy, sounds like the Mormons with burning STD’s thing, but they also happen to be a class addition to those bands and manage to throw a bit of an African flavour at it. I dug them so much I got the album and I suggest you do the same… A band that write and perform a song about Keanu Reeves and a song about how you can go fuck yourself, is fucking cool despite not wearing leather. It’s all very well taking yourselves seriously, but it doesn’t mean you can’t entertain your audience with a couple of nonsense songs now and then. They only played 3 shows in 3 days this time round, but if you care to remember, definitely go check them out next time they’re in town.

Short Straw, Unit11, Durban, Johannesburg, South Africa, Live, Music

Short Straw at unit11

Last but not least, The Anti-Retro Vinyls. Clearly the coolest looking band performing on the night. I have to admit that they didn’t really fit the bill. To me at least, The ARV’s are more of a drunk party band that attract nubile young girls and drunks wanting to molest nubile young girls, not hairy dudes in low V-neck shirts who go home alone after the band plays. Basically they are not part of the indie folk scourge that has taken over popular music these days. Looking, part Ramones part The Damned; they deliver a faster-paced, catchy, melodic sing-a-long pop rock, and despite missing their guitarist and front man Greg taking over the six string duties for the night, that’s exactly what they belted from the stage. Admittedly I wanted to start going Oh-oh-oh-oh-ooh with the band, but have far too much dignity. For them to end off the night just didn’t gel. At some gigs, mashing a couple unrelated genres and sounds together can turn out as a pretty well-rounded evening of music. In this case… it wasn’t. The ARV’s set didn’t go down as well as what it should have, and how could it have after watching a band like Short Straw who received a crowd warmed up by Columbus. Despite this gig though, The ARV’s are part of that new wave of Durban bands that could end up being an institution.

anti-retro vinyls, unit11, durban, south africa, live, music

anti retro vinyls at unit11

Not a bad night of music at the soon-to-be dearly departed, Unit11. All the bands were great in their own rights and all of them deserved more attention than they got on the night. All the douche bags that were at the Wave House that night, you deserve every ounce of disappointment for supporting a DJ that can’t use a proper word for a moniker, playing at a mall that manages fuck up every gig they ever host, when a great live music venue was hosting great bands. When will you people learn?

Go check out the bands on facebook.

All photos courtesy pigeoncoop.co.za (in case you’re too stupid to read)

04
Oct
11

i was nice once and people think it’s a trend. fuck off!

Fucking hate week days, right? At least you have the fuzzy memories of the weekend to keep you going until hopefully Wednesday. Then you can start looking forward to the weekend ahead. At least that’s how I do it. Read about what I got up to last Friday for Durban Is Yours before working on a sadistic hangover… Here.

City Bowl Mizers, Unit11, Shadow Club

Don't you hate it when idiot fans get on stage and try sing in to the mic? You're ruining the song asshole!

07
Sep
11

durban is yours, and mine, and his, and hers,and those peoples over there too…

I hail from a city on the East Coast on the tip of Africa known to some as, Dirtbin but to most on the outside as just plain old Durban… You may have also noticed that my relationship with this city and it’s occupants is a bit of a dysfunctional one. Bit like an abusive relationship that neither one of us can bear to leave. I’m not the only one who loves this filthy city though, and in an inspired move, a few of them decided to create a site that attempts to explore, share and get other people that live here out to enjoy what’s going on. Despite my crude rants about this city being asleep most of the time, there is in fact a lot of cool shit going down. So with the common love of Durban I agreed to join in on the endeavour and add my particular voice to the mix. I also love it when people make shit happen, and since these guys mostly come from the hardcore scene there is a strong DIY ethic to all of it. If you live in Durban, do yourself a favour and go over and check it out, at very least you’ll be inspired to do something with your useless self, or just go out and get shit faced, in which case, I’ll probably see you as you barrel onward to that inevitable hangover. For those of you who just want to read the usual bile I spew forth you can still catch a bit of that on there too. Go read my latest review, and check out the site in general. It’s a goodie, and I’d never lead you down the wrong path… Unless I had designs on molesting you, which in this case I don’t. Promise.

DIY, Durban Is Yours

“At yet another dub-step party… Where did I go so wrong in my life? What choices did I make, or fail to make, that have brought me to this?” These deep thoughts plagued me for longer than I usually allow my brain to stay coherent. Turns out, I was a bit quick to start the introspective examination of my life. No matter what kind of party it was, it was a club banger if there ever was one. – Click to read more.

10
Jun
11

worth the kidney disease

Jesus, that light is going to come off and hit me in the fucking head – Was my recurring thought while I stood front and centre during the Fuzigish gig on Saturday. Some spastic keeps jumping up and slapping the low hanging light fitting so it swings violently, threatening to separate itself from the ceiling and crack some poor soul’s head open.

unti11-fuzigish-pissingblood-punk band-live

look at that fucking light go!

I hadn’t planned on being at the front; I was going to formulate this piece from the comfort of way in the back behind all the sweaty, crazed punk kids, Fuzi fans, and hipsters. I made the mistake of intervening on seeing the barrier being ripped apart by the crushing wave of bodies, and knowing what happens to bodies when those metal barriers eventually give way, I decided to step in and prop it back up…

read the rest of this here

08
Apr
11

its friday friday, gotta get… Oh god make it stop!!!!

I’ve been described, by those unfortunate enough to have discussed music with me, as one of those, “music Nazis”… Use your fingers here folks and say it with me, “music Nazi”. They are quite correct in calling me something along those lines. The frustrating thing for them, I’m sure, is that I don’t take offence to the term. My blasé reaction to the intended insult often results in worse, more profane insults and on some instances physical exchanges, and not the good kind. The thing is I am never indifferent about music that I hear. I either want to make sweet sweaty coitus with it, or loathe it so much I want to see it and the rest of the world destroyed because of it. I will generally give a song, artist, band, or whatever 3 chances at most before I put them on the love or hate list forever. I can’t think of any occasion where one has managed to make the jump to the other, but I could be wrong.

I have to say, I was scared… no, I was more than scared. I was horrified in ways that I only ever imagined, when, for some inexplicable reason I explored a list of worst songs in the Rolling Stone’s daily newsletter that I subscribe to. Before you all rush out and subscribe to Rolling Stone’s emails, because you want to be as cool as me, don’t bother. Gone are the days when Rolling Stone could claim to be the finest source of rock ‘n’ roll, political and cultural news and boast having writers of the Hunter S. calibre amongst their ranks. No, those days have been brushed under the Persian rug and days of corporate dick sucking and record label pandering abound at Rolling Stone these days and looks to stay that way. So don’t bother. The saying, “Do as I say and not as I do”, applies to this situation. So anyway, I clicked an innocent enough looking link. I used my cursor and with my mouse clicked a link, like many other links I had treated in the same fashion. It was then that I experienced horror like never before. It is not a link I wish to click again, although I have clicked it many times since, inexplicably, I return to it every now and again like a dog who repeatedly pisses on an electric fence, and is always surprised by the shooting pain. I am referring to, what you may have guessed to already, I’m talking about Rebecca Black’s – Friday.

I can't be the only one who finds this face creepy

I know what you’re all thinking! Please don’t send me any get-well-soon cards or bouquets of flowers or any of that useless shit you send sick people (I’ve always wondered why people do that). I am okay. I survived it, and have come out a stronger person because of it. I have not been brainwashed. I am not an aimlessly wondering zombie drooling on myself and monotonously repeating, “Fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun…”  I will tell you right now that this is not going to be a laborious examination of Rebecca’s lyrical competency, laborious only in that it would pain me to actually sit and have to consider the lyrics on any level. I’m not even going to have a rant and issue insult after insult at her, she is only 13 after all and a grown man-child sitting in front of his computer ripping on a little girl is pathetic. It is not her fault, which I will explain in due course. I have, in a way been keeping track of the talent-impaired 13-year-old, whose parents, the people you should be blaming for this song, should have been cruel to be kind and informed their seed that she is not meant for the music industry. Bad parenting aside, you can also blame yourselves. Yes, you. I think as a society where we sit back allowing record labels and their artists to make shallow, dim-witted throw away pop music like they have done for the last ten years, insulting our intelligence while actually making younger generations dumber by not showing them anything remotely close to intelligent to aspire to, we have to accept some of the blame. We fucked up! Even people of my generation are to blame. It started out subtle, in the form of Spice Girls and numerous boy band clones, we allowed them to take the first steps to where we have eventually ended up. In a world where this unholy addition to the world of music was even allowed to pass the conversation stage. We also allowed the fascination with celebrity to get out of control. We live in a world where people become famous or infamous for no apparent reason. Every fucker wants to be famous these days, and it doesn’t matter how but they can be, as long as they’re dumb enough. That’s how you end up with a kid, influenced by the likes of Brittany Spears and every other pop tart since she was old enough to speak, putting her name to something as void and vapid as “Friday”. Creating something of value, that lasts to inspire future generations to work hard and create and contribute something of value as well, just didn’t occur to her. It isn’t a priority for anyone who gets to the position of being able to do so.  You make a shitty pop song or a suck a dick in a home-movie and because your daddy is rich, you’re famous! It’s honestly that sad and quite scary. Scenes from that utter shit film Idiocracy are in our future, for real…

rebecca black jason voorhees friday

Jason never worries about what seat to take, he just cuts your fucking head off

I will give a portion of our world’s population some credit, because Rebecca’s debut video is also the most disliked video on YouTube. As I write this post it stands at 1,750,391 dislikes, and is literally climbing as I type, go look for yourself I guarantee that number has risen, and by a lot. The total dislikes go up while you’re watching the video. I bet if I put a video of Hitler kicking a puppy, I wouldn’t get that sort of response. It shows that at least some people are choosing to side with meaningful, long-lasting contributions to popular culture. They might also just be ripping on a talentless little girl though, which is hardly admirable.

There is one upside to this musical tragedy, the hilarious parodies and spoofs of this preteen’s single. Not all are good, or even watchable, but I’ve wasted a fair amount of time going through them and some are pure brilliance. Well as brilliant as anything can be parodying such an inane song. Another upside is that I won’t be attacked by anyone over my opinion of Becca Black’s bullshit song.  That’s it for today kids, because, “…it’s the weekend, weekend.”

The link to Rebecca Black’s – Friday

A Death Metal version

And a parody that I thought was good




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