Feed on
Posts
Comments

Luigi Cozzi's science fiction epic STARCRASH is one of the wildest cinematic experiences of all time. The movie's script is a hot mess that feels like it was assembled in the dark from ideas jotted randomly on post-it notes. There is no logical progression from scene to scene or from idea to idea. When an explanation or solution was needed Cozzi just seems to have inserted a line of ridiculous dialog, had the characters smile at each other and kept moving. It is this almost total disregard for logic, sense or sanity that transforms this budget challenged Italian production to reach mad heights of near genius.

When the idea of covering STARCRASH for the podcast suggested itself I found myself with an odd problem - everyone wanted to be part of this show! Randy Fox, Jeff Nelson and John Hudson all wanted the chance to talk about the film and relate their own love for it. Troy Guinn also wanted to participate but scheduling kept him away from our recording session but he found a way to be a part of the episode anyway! So, we gathered around a table one Friday night to go through this crazed movie marveling at it's odd twists and turns while trying to come to terms with our outsized affection for it. We touch on many of the plot elements that amuse us - there is no way to touch on them all in just two hours - while digging into the cool things that the film plays homage to and/or steals from classic genre movies. Since this show consists of a group of friends that have known each other for years you can expect a number of odd references (Peter Frampton 8-tracks?) and strange connections(Where's Waldo!) that will only make sense if you listen to our stream of conscious blather. If it gets out of hand, we apologize! We had a good time and we hope you do as well.

I read out a couple of email messages at the beginning of the episode and if you would like to comment on the show the email address isthebloodypit@gmail.com. Drop us a line with any suggestions for future podcasts or to put us in our places if we've gone wrong. Thank you very much for downloading and listening! 

00:0000:00

Co-host John Hudson and I take great pleasure in returning to our occasional series of episodes on the films of Antonio Margheriti. This time out we tackle one of his 1980's action films, but this isn't a Rambo-esque bungle in the jungle. No, no! This is a film 'inspired' by (the huge world wide box office success of) RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK. From 1982 to 1985 Margheriti made three different Indiana Jones rip-offs and what separates this film from the other two is that it is not a period piece even though it deals with Nazi history and Germany's pre-war hunt for religious relics. Of course, this Ark hunt was done for a fraction of the budget of it's better known Hollywood counterpart, but for the right audience that is part of the allure.

THE ARK OF THE SUN GOD stars frequent Margheriti collaborators David Warbeck and John Steiner along with several familiar faces from Italian and Spanish genre movies. Warbeck is best known to horror fans for his roles in Fulci's THE BEYOND and THE BLACK CAT. Steiner starred in Mario Bava's final film, worked with Fulci in his WHITE FANG movies and appeared in Argento's fine giallo TENEBRA. The great character actor Luciano Pigozzi plays a guy named Beetle who is instrumental in finding the hiding place of the titular Ark. Even though his face is covered in this movie with a big busy beard it's still easy to see why he was called Italy's Peter Lorre as the resemblance is remarkable. Sadly, this seems to be the one and only film for female costar Susie Sudlow and this fact upsets both John and I.

Thank you for downloading and listening to us tromp into the Turkish desert in search of the tomb of Gilgamesh. If you have any comments or questions please write to us at thebloodypit@gmail.com and we'll be glad to hear from you. And before anyone asks the son at the end of the show is by Tame Impala with an additional tag from Warbeck and Steiner. Enjoy! 

00:0000:00

I had such a simple idea for this podcast. I would get together with artist Mark Maddox and we would talk about James Bond films for a while. I'd intercut clips from the relevant films, spice things up with some cool Bond theme songs and boom - cool podcast. That is not what happened.

I had spoken to Mark about trying to focus in on a couple of specific Bond movies that were of significance to him but I expected our conversation to range all over the fifty plus year history of the series. What I did not expect was that we would go so far off topic for so long that the editing process became pure Hell! By the time we were done I knew we were going to have at least two separate shows if I wanted either of them to have any focus. So, after much cutting and pasting I have left only the discussion of various Bond movies with a few slight tangents into related movies that touch on the subject at hand. Mostly.

We start off talking about THUNDERBALL (1965) and YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE (1967) because the former was Mark's first Bond film and the latter is one that I, until recently, disliked. We delve into the age when we were first exposed to the James Bond character and what that might mean for how we see them as adults. I think Mark's tale of trying to figure out who the hero of THUNDERBALL actually was is hysterical and his young boy view of the character is eye opening. We talk about our favorites and least favorites of the series and this leads to much yelling and threats of bodily harm. Rest assured that no matter how terrible it sounds no one was physically abused during the recording of this podcast. I did mentally abuse Mark but he's used to that by now and all those scars are internal so he should just suck it up and deal!

Of course, we had a great time doing this and I think you'll be able to hear how much fun we're having. Mark is an amazing guy and I always love talking with him. He and I really have to do this kind of thing more often. And if you haven't seen his artwork do yourself a favor and visit his website. He's a very talented man and his stuff continues to stun me with each new painting.

You can reach the podcast at thebloodypit@gmail.com and we'll be glad to hear from you. Send us any comments or suggestions about the James Bond movies or anything else we ramble on about. If you listen to the show through iTunes rating and reviewing the show would help out a lot- that's how a lot of folks learn about podcasts. Thanks for downloading and listening! 

00:0000:00

We return to the land of the giant monsters for a surprising and impressive entry in Toho's Godzilla series. This was the ninth outing for the Big G and his crowd of monster cohorts. It was also the last time that the core group of creators responsible for bringing the original 1954 classic GOJIRA to the screen were to work together on a kaiju film. The studio increased the budget for this outing (for reasons we'll discuss in the show)and the extra money shows in many ways both big and small. The use of pretty much every giant monster character that Toho had created up to this point meant that the special effects technicians were working overtime to build and shoot the numerous battles and scenes of city destruction. Oh, man- the monster fights in this film are so great!

Adding to the general excellence of this movie are the wonderful directorial touches of the great Ishirô Honda. Always a man with a keen eye for framing he also gets a chance in this film to give us several unexpected visually gorgeous images that verge on the surreal. Rarely has wet sand, high heeled shoes, a low sun and the sound of crashing surf been combined to such charged effect in a G rated film.

Since Troy just returned from his annual visit to Chicago's G-Fest I question him about the highlights of the convention. He has a little info on the new Japanese Godzilla film but we still await news of North American distribution. He relates tales of meeting numerous celebrities over the weekend and even has photographic evidence to back up his claims of glory.I really have to attend G-Fest one of the days! As the episode swings into gear we talk about the film's colorful set design, it's familiar and talented cast,the two different English dubs available and a host of other details we can't stop ourselves from gabbing about. I even spend a while complaining about the tease of seeing certain creatures who are given only seconds of screen time. I love you, Varan!

 

Thank you for downloading and listening to the show. We canbe contacted at thebloodypit@gmail.com if you have any comments or suggestions. 

00:0000:00
These days SOYLENT GREEN is a film better known for it's spoiler level final act revelation than for it's more impressive qualities. It presents a dystopian vision of the world if then current trends in overpopulation and pollution continued unabated with a depth of meaning and intelligence of the best science fiction. Fortunately, the talent involved were able to craft this harsh story into something smart and  entertaining. The film boasts a brilliant cast, strong direction and a dark future shock style scenario that feels realistic but alien and fascinating at the same time. The vision of a hopelessly overcrowded New York City in 2022, choked with clouds of yellowish smog and bathed in a constant heat wave is a window into to a tomorrow that no one would want for their children but seems more likely with each passing year. Perhaps, if we are lucky, this film's fate is to be less prophecy than heeded warning for the generations that fear that one day we might be feeding on ourselves just to survive. 

I am joined once again by my fellow 1970's science fiction fanatic Randy Fox to discuss SOYLENT GREEN and we find that our opinions differ just a bit. Before we begin Randy let's in on his recent, exciting project bringing independent radio back to the city of Nashville! He is one of the main movers & shakers behind the scenes of WXNA 101.5 FM which can also be streamed online at their website if you are not privileged enough to live in Nashville. It's a DJ programmed radio station with a slew of specialty shows and the attitude that they will play what corporate radio won't touch. Check it out!

As you might expect, this look at SOYLENT GREEN covers a lot of ground. We talk  a bit about the cast and crew, delve into the darker elements of the story, marvel at the glory of Edward G. Robinson, bitch about the madness of silenced revolvers and Randy introduces us to the Charlton Heston 'Grimace' Scale. Near the end we talk a little about the source novel by Harry Harrison and we even have a piece of feedback email relating to our LOGAN'S RUN show. Very cool! If you want to let us know what you think the email address is thebloodypit@gmail.com where we will be thrilled to hear from you. 
00:0000:00

Toho Studio's Monster universe takes another turn for the weird in this science fiction epic! This movie introduces the soon to be reused idea of alien invaders taking control of the giant monsters and creating large scale destruction in the hopes of worldwide conquest. No one should have trusted those Emo looking freaks anyway. Just look at those evil glasses! As this is the immediate follow up to GHIDORAH it is very strange that the American release avoided that name entirely and went with MONSTER ZERO. I guess that Ghidorah just doesn't have the same box office appeal as Godzilla which still doesn't explain why they didn't title it Godzilla Goes to Planet X. Which would lead to my favorite possible crossover ever - Buckaroo Banzai Meets Godzilla! (Does anyone get that reference?)

 

We take a look at this one with the switch being that this time out I am not the one synopsizing the movie's events. Troy leads this dance through two worlds, three giant monsters, two affable astronauts, dozens of evil aliens and a host of Kumi Mizuno clones. Yeah- this one has plenty of things to talk about! We discuss the American actor Nick Adams as he rages against the alien horde and chases after a lovely lady. We dig into the ideas and plot threads that are brought up and left dangling as the movie speeds toward its conclusion along with the ways this film points to how the future Toho SF movies would shift in tone. Troy comes armed with some interesting information on the amount of screen time the monsters get in this picture making for some interesting questions about what audiences want verses what they actually get. I get to express my love for trap doors and also muse on the possibility of alien monsters made of funnel cake. I might have gotten carried away with that last one.

 

Of course, this being a conversation between Troy and I we can't stop ourselves from beginning the show with a couple of completely of irrelevant topics. OK. To be honest, it was just me talking about 1970's Marvel comic books and Edgar Rice Burroughs adventure novels but Troy could have stopped me at any time with a bat or a bucket of water! And the tangent we take near the end of the show is all on him! If you want to comment on our lack of professionalism and inability to stay on a single topic please write us at thebloodypit@gmail.com and we'll get back to you with our defense. Thanks for downloading an listening. If you listen through iTunes please rate and review us over there as it really helps get more eyes on us. 

00:0000:00

Welcome to the 23rd century. The only thing you can't have in this perfect world of total pleasure is your 30th birthday.

 

All around good guy Randy Fox joins me as we continue our series of shows on the science fiction films of the 1970's. This one figures big in both of our young lives as a touchstone for the genre and how we viewed it. It may come as a surprise just how big and widespread the fandom for this hit movie became. As kids it was easy to get caught up in LOGAN'S RUN simply for its sets, action and the beautiful people but luckily those are not the only elements on offer. In this episode we dissect the film in detail drawing out some subtext and symbolism along the way even though we both still spend a lot of time marveling over the look of the world the film so skillfully builds. We talk about the cast and our mutual appreciation for the solid center they give to this wild story and look at the ways the casting made the film work. There is a discussion of several deleted scenes and I've even managed to grab audio from one such sequence that restores some dialog cut from the finished film. Exciting stuff!

We also delve into the changes made from the book, talk about the book's sequels and the surprising, never completed comic book sequel to the film. Along the way Randy and I pledge our undying love for both Jenny Agutter and the lost art of matte paintings so it's strange trip no matter how you think about it. We even try to diagnosis Box the cyborg's mechanical needs as he has clearly missed his preventative maintenance check up!

Along the way I've sprinkled some bits from Jerry Goldsmith's excellent score and some extra clips from the picture. We end the discussion with a look at Marvel's comic book adaptation, Randy's stint in the Logan's Run fan club and a brief look at the short lived TV series from 1977. We hope you enjoy this (rather lengthy) look back at this SF classic and if you want to share your memories of the books or the movie please contact us at thebloodypit@gmail.com - we'll be glad to hear from you. Until next time - Run, Runner! 

00:0000:00

Pasta-pocalypse time on The Bloody Pit! I am joined once again by Troy and Jeff to talk about a piece of Italian sleaze and this time we finally delve into the world of MAD MAX/THE ROAD WARRIOR rip offs. Director Enzo Castellari was a veteran of low budget genre cinema by the early 80's and he knew how to stretch a dollar to make things work. When he made this film he was in the middle of a string of such sci-fi adventures that owed as much to the dystopian worlds of Miller's Mad Max as they did to Carpenter's dark future from ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK. All these influences swirl around mixed with a standard Western plot, silly hair styles, ridiculous cars, silly weapons and dangerous stunt work to create a fun, bizarre and occasionally sadistic ride. The fact that the amazing Fred Williamson is on hand to keep the grins flowing is only part of the entertainment on view. After all - we have to find a way to survive the end of civilization and start over again, right? Or are we just looking for victory? Don't ask Nadir.

After a brief discussion of the media that we've been checking out lately, your Three Stooges dive into a detailed breakdown of THE NEW BARBARIANS. We examine the odd design and talk about how the western story template makes for a good jumping off point for an action tale. We discuss the cast, the clever ways the production dealt with budgetary issues and the nepotism that shows up in every Castellari film. We spend some time on the mighty George Eastman (a.k.a. Luigi Montefiori) and his impressive career and marvel at the talents of Williamson as he brightens the movie in ways only he can manage. We get a kick out of analyzing the strange sexual politics of the story as Troy points out a way that this film is unique among it's post-apocalyptic brethren. And of course, we smile and laugh at the insane gunfights, slow motion car crashes and exploding dummies along the way. Man - I Love exploding dummies! Truly, a good time was had by all.

We can be reached at thebloodypit#gmail.com if you have anycomments or questions. Next month Troy and I will be back on the NaschyCast feed covering some Spanish Horror again while I'll be trying to get the long delayed LOGAN'S RUN episode off the ground. Let us know what you think and if there are any movies you think we should pay attention to as we venture down the road. Thanks for downloading and listening. 

00:0000:00

The Toho Kaiju films are a joy on so many levels and I'm thrilled that we are starting a new series covering a set of them for 2016. The focus this year will be on the various movies that feature that golden skinned villain Ghidorah and we begin with his (her?) first appearance in 1964's GHIDORAH, THE THREE HEADED MONSTER. Released in the U.S. in 1965 it became a favorite of monster kids and it's screenings on domestic television pushed this fifth Godzilla film to new heights of popularity. That this is much more a Godzilla or Mothra film than a Ghidorah tale which points to it being a direct sequel to the monster film released earlier that same year MOTHRA VS GODZILLA. Throw in the second appearance by Rodan and this becomes a sequel to his solo movie from 1956! That's right -this s a four monster film making it a Toho Monster Rally! Pop the corn, lay in a supply of dried squid and get ready to watch the fireworks!

As always with these giant monster movies Troy is the fanatic with years of reading and watching informing his thoughts and I am the neophyte trying to line these movies up in my horror loving head. We talk a bit about the differences between the Japanese version and the shorter English language cut while admitting freely that we simply cannot settle on a set pronunciation of the title monster's name. We both were impressed by the excellent commentary track on this film's Classic Media DVD by author David Kalat and we speak to some of his opinions as we go along. I have to say that he makes some good points even if I disagree with his take on some specific ideas. Troy gives me some backup when I question the film's U.N. meeting of giant monsters and the credulity stretching table tennis sequence, but has some love for the concept of a kiaju group hug. Also, neither of us can understand why one of this film's alternate titles isn't GODZILLA VS something something..... anything! The Big G is the star here, title aside.

 

Thanks for downloading and listening. Any questions or comments can be sent to thebloodypit@gmail.com where we'll be glad to hear from you. Remember that you can send MP3's or WAV files of your comments as well and we'll blend them into the feedback section next time out. 

00:0000:00

John Hudson returns to the Bloody Pit to help me discuss this amazing cannibal gore film from director Antonio Margheriti. Shot in Atlanta, Georgia during the cooler months of the year lends some fascinating texture to the film and gives the plot about deranged Vietnam Vets a little gravity. And when your story revolves around a virus that somehow transfers cannibalism between people like the flu you need all the seriousness you can muster! Luckily this is one of the very few Margheriti films that has been released to DVD in the US with extras! Among those extras is a very nice 54 minute long documentary about CANNIBAL APOCALYPSE that includes interviews with the director as well as actors John Saxon and Giovanni Lambardo Radice a.k.a. John Morghen. This gives us a little more insight into the film than we usually have and allows for some examination of the ideas presented, which I like!

Before we dive into the film Hudson and I catch up a bit with discussion of our upcoming Alice Cooper encounter; John's history with Tarantino theatrical screenings; his rewatch of The Sopranos; my journey through the Hannibal TV series and a general concern for the winter weather. Once we attack our main topic I start with some information on the legendary Italian screenwriter Dardano Sacchetti who is responsible for so many of the classic Euro-Cult films of the 1970's and 80's that entire books should be written about him! As the podcast continues we complain about the often inappropriate score along with an audio example of the sound of blood dripping from meat - high strangeness. There is some talk about flamethrowers and exploding dogs as well as the real animal cruelty in the sewer scenes. We touch on the use of wood as a metaphor (I'm not kidding) and end up wondering what words rhyme with Saxon. Yeah, we're all over the place in this one.

Thank you for downloading and listening to the show. We can be contacted at thebloodypit@gmail.com for any comments or complaints. At the end of this episode we lay out the plans for future Bloody Pit shows about Antonio Margheriti as well as the other movies that will be covered in the next few months. We hope you enjoy what we're doing and please stay safe and warm. 

00:0000:00

- Older Posts »