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Tuesday Media Roundup #33

I found a number of “B”movies on DirecTV recently in addition to sme good stuff so I have more than I normally do. Nice thing about the “B” movies is they rarely exceed 90 minutes.

The Neanderthal Man – I had seen this before. A scientist believes that the larger brain case in neanderthals would have made the neanderthal more intelligent. The other scientists laugh at him so he continues his work on a serum to revert things back to their older genes. The cat turns into a sabre-tooth tiger (looks just like a regular tiger!) and the scientist and his maid get sent to their neanderthal roots where they look more like the wolfman and attack people in the woods.

Octaman – 70s Environmental horror. In Mexico a scientist discovers a half-man/half-octopus. It gets pretty pissed when they start studying the babies and it attacks the scientist camp, mostly at night. Once nice thing about these movies is that the action parts can be watched on fast forward and it generally increases the quality. This movie has a lot of “action” which often means octaman is staring at people from the reeds in the swamp. My two favorite moments in the movie were octaman stabbing a guy with a suddenly rigid tentacle, and when octaman jumps out of the RV at the scientists because it made me laugh out loud.

Eight on the Lam – Bob Hope and Phyllis Diller. Phyllis Diller is fun whenever she’s on screen but this is pretty uninteresting otherwise. Bob Hope has 8 kids and is that casual? Not buying it.

Alienator – An android bounty hunter is sent to Earth to catch an alien criminal. This movie was made in 1989 but all the effects were from the 70s. Speaking of that, I’d like to see movie effects and editing software offer the ability to apply 70s effects. How hard can rotoscoping with a bright border be? Anyway, female bodybuilder is the android and the body armor she wears is pretty horrible. The dialog is pretty fun though so don’t fast-forward through that.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skulls – Saw this Thursday night before the crowds got crazy. Liked it quite a bit and thought it fit very well with the previous movies in feel and in style. I was also very glad Karen Allen was back in her role from the first movie.

The Vampire – A doctor takes some addictive pills that wirn him into a vampire at night. The makeup looks more like a werewolf, but that’s easily overlooked. This movie is more about drug addiction turning you into a monster that destroys yourself, your family, and loved ones around you with a thin layer of vampire on top. It’s actually pretty good.

Blood Simple – I finally got a chance to see this and I definitely liked it. All the twists were great and I thought the use of kecak music for Frances McDormand’s character’s pivotal points was well done. If this didn’t have background music it might almost be a David Lynch film.
Vicious Lips – This movie was made in 1987 but it feels like it was written in 1983 and had to wait for what budget it had. A rock band gets signed and has to go play on another planet. This is a USA: Up All Night kind of movie all the way. At some point it switches to weird dream sequence and feels like the Wizard of Oz in a strange way. You probably want a few drinks for this one.

Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark – Having seen the new Indiana Jones movie we decided to watch the previous ones. The DVD is from a nicely cleaned up print and visible effects have been made invisible. Aside from that it’s still the same classic.

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom – I didn’t remember many details except that it is my least favorite. That’s still true and I think the movie could be much better and very little changed if Kate Capshaw’s character, Winnie, would have been cut from the script.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade –  This one builds on what made the first one good and solidifies that which is good because it allowed the Kingdom of the Crystal Skulls to come out as well as it did. The interplay between Indy and his father is great throughout and really amke the movie.

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