Lifeforce (1985)

Posted: October 20, 2016 in Fiction, Horror, Movies, Needless Things


Lifeforce is an odd film. I could just as easily write it up as an entry in my “They’re Not Bad, They’re Just Filmed That Way” series and few people would have blinked twice at its placement there. On the other hand, there’s a pretty solid following for this film, and those followers would be pretty vocal about placing the film on any sort of “So Bad it’s Good” list. I should know, I’m a part of that pretty solid following. But one thing I think everyone can agree on- whether they like the film, love the film, or hate the film -is that this film is absolutely full on excremento de murciélago crazy. Lifeforce, the greatest film ever made about naked vampires from outer space coming to Earth and destroying a major English city.

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Over the last few years there’s been a noticeable movement by fandom and convention owners to shut down rip-off artists and thieves who are lining their pockets by making copies of the work of real artists and selling them as their own work. We’ve seen guys like Rob Granito, Joseph Bayer, Matt Walker, and others confronted at and even removed and banned from conventions for selling other people’s art as their own under the argument that they’ve “interpreted” the original artwork to a degree that they can claim a level of fair use and call it their own.

Many fans have rightly seen this as total bunk and many conventions are rightly removing them from their premises. Thing is, they’re not even the worst offenders out there right now, and that’s where all of you come in.

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I’ve been a wrestling fan for years now. Moreover, I’ve been a fan of pro-wrestling for years now. That may look like I said the same thing twice, but it’s not quite the same thing. Like many, I’ve been a wrestling fan in that I enjoy just sitting down and watching and enjoying what I’m seeing on the TV screen or in whatever venue I was in for a live show. But, additionally, I’ve been a fan of wrestling. I’m one of those people who love the art of it, the technique of portraying the unreal as real in live entertainment and not breaking the “reality” of it. I love the history of it all, and I love seeing how wrestling has influenced pop culture in different eras and vice-versa. I also love the variety of it all. I’m a wrestling fan, and I’m a fan of pro-wrestling.

This can be a good thing and a bad thing when it comes to what’s happening in the pro-wrestling world. See, I’m in my mid-forties. I’ve seen some of the biggest “Golden Eras” of wrestling over the last 50 years. The big problem with this is that every time we seem to see these “Golden Eras” we see the world of pro-wrestling simultaneously become lesser for it.

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This time of year you get a lot of reviews and discussion about books and movies, but what you don’t see a lot of people talking about is audio horror. I think that’s a real shame since audio horror pulled off well can be every bit as effective as a book or a film- maybe even more so. When done well, the sounds of two characters moving through decrepit old house that they’re maybe not the only occupants of can be more effective than two pages of written word, and the visual “FX budget” of your mind is obviously far less limited than even the biggest budgeted Hollywood film. Some can be fun and safe for family listening, some can be terrifying and maybe not for younger ears.

Turn off the movies. Close the books for just a bit. As Halloween gets closer, look into the horrors found in the medium of sound. Check out some full cast audio dramas and more in the run-up to this year’s Halloween.

Bad Movie Beware!

Posted: October 8, 2016 in Entertainment, Horror, Needless Things


The month of October is upon us again, and that means that Halloween is fast approaching. With Halloween comes parties, get togethers, and intimate soirees dedicated to cheap drinks, bad takeout food, and even worse movies. Yeah, this is the time of year when you’re on the lookout for the newer gems the horror genre has to offer, but where’s the fun in it if you’re not having at least some so bad they’re good (or almost good) movie showings?

Now, it’s not always easy to track down such films if you don’t have a really good friend with really bad taste in movies. Yeah, you can turn to Google, but you’ll end up with 100 search results for lists that all give you more or less the same 15 “top” bad films. Fortunately for you, me, and that strange guy down the street none of us want to talk about, there’s Fail-Flix.

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Okay, let’s get this one out of the way early just in case you get curious enough to track it down and give it a look. Why early? Because you might want to have time to recover from the shock and trauma of what you see before Halloween actually rolls around. Sounds extreme? Think I’m joking? I’m not. I know people who will swear this film damn near traumatized them when they saw it without being warned of the contents, and even a few who knew going in what they were in for.

When this film comes up in these situations, a friend of mine likes to tell people at convention panels he’s on that this is a film that most people who love film should see at least once if only to see one extreme of what film is capable of. I tend to throw some qualifiers on that. This is a film that anyone who loves film and the power that film can hold over the viewer should see providing that person has a strong stomach and has never been prone to having nightmares.

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Support what you love. Promote what you love. Those seem like pretty basic concepts. They also seem like easy things to do. But if you spend any time at all on social media you’ll see that a lot of people use their time “socializing” by doing things other than this. As a matter of fact, a lot of people- and I am guilty of this myself from time to time when it comes to the realm of politics –seem to spend as much time or more essentially promoting the examples of what they don’t like than they do promoting things they like. That really is something a lot of people should work on changing.

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