Sunday, June 5, 2011

Jason goes to Holehead--Day 3.

The first weekend wraps up with a four-film Sunday

We start in old school Japan with the classic GODZILLA, MOTHRA, AND KING GHIDORAH: ALL OUT MONSTERS ATTACK! Okay, so "old school" is 2001, but it's the venerable Godzilla vs. The Guardian Monsters. Three monsters who defend the homeland (not the nation, the homeland, there's a difference) of Japan. First Baragon, the burrowing red horned monster without a good enough agent to get his name on the title. Then Mothra, the giant moth (with nothing but an oblique insider reference to the fairy twins). And of course there's King Ghidorah, the three-headed 1,000 year dragon. And there's the defense force, a plucky young woman (who is the daughter of the commander of the defense force) and plenty of old school monster on monster action. This is also a throwback to the first Holehead, when they played it 7 years ago. Back then we saw the subtitled version, this time all they could get was the dubbed. It was awesome then, it's still awesome now.

We then moved from old-school Japan to new-school (or new-school remake of a 70's TV show) Japan with KARATE-ROBO ZABORGAR. Non-stop cotton candy childish fun from the maker of MACHINE GIRL. Daimon fights for righteousness with his trusty motorcycle/robot Zaborgar. Their nemesis is sigma, the evil organization responsible for his father's death. Crazy silliness, and there's even a message of free will, redemption, perseverence, and fighting for who or what you love. But most importantly, the crazy silliness.

Next up was the comedy program, staring with the short ROID RAGE. An angry mutant hemorrhoid runs amok, getting revenge on the real assholes of the world.

And that led into the feature, THE MOLE MAN OF BELMONT AVENUE. A Chicago production, starring people who are allegedly legends of the Chicago sketch comedy scene, and Robert Englund. All the pets are disappearing from a rundown shithole apartment complex, and the two idiot brothers who run the place (after inheriting it from their mom) can't seem to do anything about it. Of course, they also can't seem to stay sober long enough to try. They have enough problems just collecting rent, paying the bills, and maintaining the extension cords they use to steal electricity from the church across the street. So of course they're not going to be a match for the Mole Man. But they're excellent at drinking and making fun of each other. Not much of a story in this no-budget flick, but it's plenty funny watching the idiotic, self-centered brothers and their equally deranged tenants screw everything up.

And finally, the last show of the night started with the short HAWKINS HILL. A classic setup--a teenage couple in an abandoned house, someone comes in and they find there's something sinister going on. Very well constructed in this case, with an interesting take on murals and inspiration.

The theme of art and inspiration continues in the homage to classic Italian horror, UBALDO TERZANI HORROR SHOW. Alessio is a young up-and-coming film director. Or at least he wants to be. He wants to make a horror movie but his producer doesn't like the splatter style of his scripts, he prefers something more atmospheric, psychological, classical. So he sets him up with a co-writer, a famous horror novelist Ubaldo Terzani. Prior to moving in with Ubaldo for an extended writing session, Alessio reads all his novels, and starts having nightmares about them. Clearly he's is a brilliant writer, and Alessio is eager to learn his secret. Ubaldo is charming and takes Alessio to a party so that he'll learn to let go, have fun, live life, and find his muse. There's something more to him, though, and you can probably guess without me saying anything. So I won't. Instead I'll note the humor (including a gasp-inducing dig against Clive Barker. For the record I like Clive Barker) and the great gore effects by Italian master Sergio Stivaletti. And I'll note how they got the balance and flow of psychological to gory in just the same vein as the Italian classics. Nicely done.

Total Running Time: 410 minutes
My Total Minutes: 238,255

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dear Jason,

Thank you so much for your comment about our movie Hawkins Hill. We are so pleased you went to the festival and took the time to write about it.


Romina Sacre & Sara Seligman
SESA Productions