Scary Shorties: Baby Monitor (Rajesh Naroth, 2016)

(A tidbit o’terror, courtesy of #SmutmasterEric…Thanks, Ho-rrific Ho-mie! 🙂 xoxo)

A couple is woken by crying three times. The first two times are rewound to the beginning before a parent gets up to check on the infant.

The narrative structure makes the short more mysterious and suspenseful than if they were just woken once.

 

#MonsterMovieMonday: White Zombie (1932)

Just another Monster Movie Monday here at Kinky Horror, and this one’s a real clas-sick. We’re going all the way back to 1932 disturb the dead and resurrect… White Zombie!

White Zombie is a personal favorite o’ mine and is one of the finest fright flicks to rise from the public domain. It stars Bela “Bringing SeXXXy Drac” Lugosi as Murder Legendre, who is certainly no traditional bokor, but knows how to get the dead movin’. He’s hired by Charles Beaumont (not the Twilight Zone one) to work his wicked witchcraft, although, he knows, it’s strictly taboo. Ol’ Charlie wants him to make the beautiful Madeline his wife, so Murder makes her a zombie! However, Charlie soon learns that trusting a man called “Murder” who controls zombies may not have been the smartest move…

The film is often cited as the first zombie film ever made, but don’t eXXXpect much flesh-eatin’ goodness. What makes this film a true nightmare is its bizarro, hypnotic atmosphere. Sure, it lacks gore, but it’s still pretty darn spoopy! This film puts you in a terrifying trance, as if you were under the control of Murder himself. Speaking of that ghoul, Lugosi’s deliberately stilted performance is brilliantly weird and from a realm different from our own. Murder is certainly not the most endearing of Lugosi roles, but its definitely one of the creepiest.
Oh, Murder… we love that voodoo that you do so well… 🙂

Fall under the spell and watch White Zombie below:

P.S-. A little-known rock band named themselves after this movie… I hope those kids go places. 😉

Scary Shorties: Wink (2016)

(A Kinky Kwikie brought to you by the letter E…Thanks, Smutmaster Eric! 🙂 xoxo)

A woman at home on Halloween is texting, and becomes puzzled that her emojis have disappeared. Things get really weird after she opens her front door. It’s a suspenseful, imaginative short that runs less than 4 minutes.

Goon Review: Night of Something Strange (2016)

(Submitted by Mr. Andrew Peters…Thanks, you Ho-rror Heartthrob, you! 🙂 xoxo)

To me, horror comedies rarely work out. I’m sure I’ve talked about this before, but I feel that most of them fail at either being a horror or a comedy. Usually, the cast knows what kind of film they are in, so they tend to play it up and delivering each line as if they are winking at the camera. The characters are usually stock cliches and more often than not, they confuse blood and gore with horror. Now as nice as those things are, when put in the hands of someone who misunderstand what either a horror or a comedy are, the film comes off as inauthentic and, well, stupid. Not to mention, they seem to be poorly filmed. The shots aren’t well planned and it’s like the filmmaker has no idea where to point the camera. I get the feeling that most of the time they don’t.

Luckily, Night of Something Strange isn’t any of that. Sure, it falls into some of the cliches, but they are done right, if that makes sense. At first, even I was a little worried when the characters were being introduced, but as the film goes on, you understand why they are and how they play into the plot and some of them become likable. Maybe it’s due to the film’s low budget or how the cast has a connection to each other, but they come of as genuine in playing their roles. A lot of heart went into this movie, something you don’t see very often anymore. That’s another thing; it’s shot like a movie. The cinematography is impressive to say the least and the use of lighting is done to effect the overall tone of the film. Everything that most lower budget films seem to misunderstand and mimic are done right here. Indie filmmaking seems like it’s becoming a lost art, but every now and then you get something that restores your faith. Night of Something Strange did just that for me.

Night of Something Strange opens with a tall, brooding hospital worker named Cornelius (Wayne Johnson) who looks like he probably has some issues. Sure enough, he shows us what kind of issues he has when he wanders into a morgue and decides to bang a female corpse. You could say that Cornelius is getting lucky, but I would say he’s getting unlucky seeing as how this particular corpse seems to have a still active STD. Not just any STD, but something that causes a much more serious side effect; you turn into a sex crazed zombie. Cornelius heads home and as the virus takes effect, he pisses all over his bed and then rapes and infects his mother. Talk about starting your movie off with bang. Where else are you gonna find necrophilia, watersports and incest all within ten minutes? Well, the last one I’m only assuming is only incest since the relationship between the two characters isn’t established, but I get the feeling it’s mother and son. It’s easily unsettling and let’s you know what you’re in store for. You would think at this point, the film was only trying to set the bar for absurdity, but it’s only getting started.

With Cornelius now free to run amok, we turn our attention to our central cast of characters in a high school. Or college. I don’t know which. All I know is that I was surprised to see Brink Stevens appear as their teacher in a cameo. Regardless, these are the people you will be spending the run time with and like I said, at first they may seem like cliches and they are all kind of assholes in their own, but stick with them. You will come to like them. The core girl of the group is Christine (Rebecca C. Kasek) and is probably the least douchiest of them all. Her friend Carrie (Toni Ann Gambale), Carrie’s boyfriend Freddy (Michael Merchant) who is probably the biggest douche of the group, token stoner Brooklyn and chubby Jason are all headed for a little getaway with their friend Pam (Nicola Fiore) and her boyfriend Dirk (Trey Harrison) who has suspicions that his girlfriend is cheating on him when he takes a peek at her phone and notices a dick pic. Still, he hasn’t been laid in a while, so he’s gonna let this slide for a bit. At least until he gets laid.

No better place to do that than at the Redwood Motel ran by a rather creepy old man who feels like a runaway member of family from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Now that Dirk has had some time to relieve from sexual tension, he breaks things off with Pam and befriends Christine outside and the two have a rather nice bonding moment and the chemistry feels rather genuine. Freddy, on the other hand, is doing whatever it takes to get some ass, including berating and threatening his verbal punching bag, Jason. Even Brooklyn falls victim to Freddy’s pranks when Freddy attempts a frat, but sharts on his face. You have to wonder why these people hang out with him, but I’m assuming it’s through his association with Carrie. Or I’m over analyzing what doesn’t need to be. Freddy’s sexual conquest – or his attempt at sexual conquest – could be a Porky’s style comedy on it’s own. After being denied sex, Freddy heads outside to the dumpster where he reckons is a great place to rub one out. His realistic style commentary over his fantasy where Jason comes into the room while he goes at it with Carrie makes watching a character beat off a little more comfortable. And funny. Even when Freddy knocks himself out by hitting his head on the dumpster, do you think that stops him from finishing. Not a chance. The champ picks up right where he left off when he comes to.

Now it’s time for shit to really start hitting the fan. Cornelius and the few others he infected show up at the Redwood Motel and begin their rampage, infecting a few more others. Poor Freddy now has this and another situation to deal with; having mistaken Jason for Carrie, Freddy becomes stuck in Jason’s butt and not only has to avoid having the others see him and the mental scarring this will cause, but also battle the undead. Gotta give props to Michael Merchant for spending half of the movie with his bottom hanging out and pulling off stunts while being stuck inside an unconscious man. Hey, give the guy a break. It’s dark in that room. Meanwhile outside, Dirk finds himself fighting off these zombies alongside Christine and they learn that a simple gunshot to the head doesn’t quite work like zombie films have taught us. As the chaos ensues, what are they to do?

I can’t tell you how much I was impressed with Night of Somethings Strange, perfectly blending the horror and comedy genres. I was reminded of Return of the Living Dead while watching and that’s never a bad thing. I laughed at the parts I was supposed to and I ended up even rooting for Freddy, the biggest asshole of the bunch. Maybe I’m a little biased knowing the actor, but every time he was on screen, you were guaranteed a raunchy gag and a laugh and the film uses a lot of sick, gross out moments for laughs. One in particular that comes to mind is when Carrie falls into a blood and shit soaked toilet while trying to pee in it or later when she gets kicked in the crotch by Christine and her shoe gets stuck right in there. There’s also little things, like Freddy getting a bloody condom on his face and the aforementioned sharting scene. It’s a film that would feel at home alongside any given Troma film. I also felt Trey Harrison was a great lead, commanding every scene he was in and Nicola Fiore was a treat and I wish she was in more scenes.


Being a zombie film, it does have some pretty decent special effects for the most part, but at times you can notice a change in the quality. Most times, I thought the makeup was gruesome and disgusting, but then there were times when it looked noticeably different and not for the better, primarily when CG was used. This is due to problems with the previous effects people, as the film unfortunately had to go through a few of them, but I don’t fault the film or the filmmaker for that. After all, it’s about getting lost in the story and the characters and it’s quite easy to do that in Night of Something Strange. It truly was a breath of fresh air in the indie zombie horror sub genre. I can’t tell you how many I’ve had to sit through in the last few years, the majority of which are unbearable to say the least. To see something that has heart behind it made this a pleasure to see. Director Jonathan Straiton really made one of the best indie horror films I’ve seen in a long time. He demonstrated that you can play with the stereotypes and cliches of the genre while also showing how to play against them. He made what should have been a purposely foul and raunchy shlock fest that would have otherwise been ineptly made into something that’s outstandingly terrific and will be remembered (and possibly imitated) for years to come.

NES Friday the 13th: The Movie :)

Ho-wdy, you valiant Voorhees lovers! I’m not sure about you kinky kreeps, but I happen to love the living dead poop out of the NES Friday the 13th game…

…And so does director Michael Ramova! So much so that he directed this nifty short film based on that eXXXcellent 8-bit horror show! 🙂 Funded through Indiegogo (by Friday Fiends like me :)), Mr. Ramoval did what Paramount couldn’t and brought Jason to 2017. You just can’t keep a bad ghoul down. 🙂

Check it out below, Kinky Ho-s! 🙂 xoxo

Goon Review: The Devil’s Dolls (2016)

(Submitted by Mr. Andrew Peters…Thanks for the warning on this one, Ho-rror Ho-mie! 😉 xoxo)

I’ve talked about cliches before and that sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. Sometimes it can make a film seem like it’s been photocopied from several other things that did the same thing, giving it a very stale taste. It can make a film so bland and uninspired that you barely notice the film and only see the things you’ve seen several dozen times before. That’s what The Devil’s Dolls is. Even though the core concept of the film is interesting, it’s the same film you’ve seen from major studios time and time again and considering this is an independent feature, I’m kinda surprised the film didn’t take any liberties and just played it safe.

Right from the very first moment, you get the feeling you’ve seen this all before. I mean, how many times have you seen a skinny white girl in a tank top tied up and tortured? Far too many. I actually let out an audible groan and rolled my eyes and the only reason I kept watching was because it’s my job. Then I thought, “Well, maybe it’ll get better. Maybe something different will happen,” but nope. Not really. The film then cuts to a serial killer named Henry as he mumbles to some worry dolls and places them inside a wooden box as his captive girl struggles to get free, just in time as he picks up a large gas powered drill and chases her. Aren’t these scenes usually at the end of the movie? It feels like we stepped into a generic modern slasher during the last fifteen minutes. She comes across a cop who of course doesn’t listen to her warnings about leaving immediately and continues on with what he’s saying. It’s like he’s having a conversation with himself and this trope is absolutely frustrating and the only reason this scene exists is to throw in the film’s only really gory moment as he gets drilled through the head. Just as Henry is about to drill this unnamed girl, he’s gunned down by hard boiled Detective Matt off screen that wasn’t there a moment ago and saves her. Already, I feel like I’ve sat through this entire movie. Without seeing the rest of the movie, I can tell you all about these characters.

 

Matt should be celebrating that he just gunned down the serial killer he’s been chasing for years, but he’s not. The job has cost him his marriage and he now drinks and sits in his office, staring at the wall looking lost. You know, typical cop movie stuff. Another thing he does is not really follow police procedures. Rather than have the crime scene investigators haul the wooden box of worry dolls into evidence, Matt just tosses that shit in the back seat of his car which his daughter Chloe ends up taking to her mother’s antique store. Chloe decides to make these worry dolls into her jewelry and wears one herself and instantly becomes pale skinned and seemingly sick. Conveniently for everyone else in the movie and the plot Chloe happens to suffer from epilepsy, so they just pass it off as that. Even after she stabs the family dog to death and winds up at the hospital when she becomes unresponsive, they blame it on her illness. I wasn’t aware that random acts of murder was a side effect of epilepsy.

A young adult whose girlfriend bought him one of Chloe’s worry doll necklaces also goes pale and randomly murders a gas station attendant. Matt is called to the scene, because this case bears a striking resemblance to the one he thought he just closed; a similar marking or drawing that Henry left behind during his crimes. During his investigation, Matt believes that the victim must have had contact with Henry, but his investigation leads him to an old voodoo woman who wants the box, but Henry must first find all the worry dolls and place them back inside the box before sundown. This timeframe is suddenly thrown on you, seeing as how one or two nights have already passed, but the story desperately feels the need to make this seem urgent.

I think I may have just narrowed down the plot a little too much, which has even surprised me, but the more I think about it, there isn’t anything much else to say about the film. I mean, think of most horror movie and cop movie cliches and there ya go. That’s this movie. As the film draws near the end and they are trying hard to making it seem more tense than it actually is, the twists and suspenseful moments that it throws at you can be seen coming a mile away, so it’s very uneffective. I feel like I’m going in circles here, struggling to find something to talk about, but it’s such an unmemorable film that nothing stuck with me… and I just watched it last night and even took notes. I guess I could mention the characters, since I haven’t really talked about them, but they have no chemistry together. They even try the nickname game, always calling each other “buddy,” “Chlo” or what have you, but it comes off as a group of people that just met and feel uncomfortable being around each other and awkwardly and forcefully trying to strike up a conversation.

If there are any positives to take away from The Devil’s Dolls it’s that the performances are actually pretty decent, especially considering there is a child actor who must be possessed and the special effects aren’t half bad. I say half bad because the majority of it is slashed throats and blood spraying, as if the special effects person was only talented at just that effect and didn’t want to step out of their comfort zone. It’s an unfortunate shame, since the head drilling scene at the beginning was pretty cool. I guess you get your big effect out of the way in the first several minutes, hook in the audience and they’ll keep watching thinking they’ll get more of that. Hey, Scanners did something similar, except that movie was phenomenal. It’s kind of a shocker that Scream Factory of all companies released this movie on Blu-ray. I can’t recall if there were any special features included or not, although I can’t imagine you would want to check them out and at a $20 price tag, it’s probably best to skip this one. However, it is on Netflix if you get curious and I noticed it had about a one star rating. Now I know why.

I can’t say that The Devil’s Dolls was a bad film, it’s just not that interesting. It’s not unwatchable, it’s just forgettable. Nothing sticks out and I found myself very bored and since the movie is incredibly predictable, it’s like jumping forward into the future and having seen it before you actually do. I didn’t hate the film. I just don’t care about it.

 

Scary Shorties: The Jester (2016)

(Submitted by Dr. Anton Phibes…Thank you, Sinister Sir! 🙂 xoxo)

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Greetings, boils and ghouls! We here at Kinky Horror like to shine a blood red spotlight on some glorious grotesquies that you may have missed. Today’s hidden gem is a shocking short from MakeDo Entertainment simply titled The Jester.

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The Jester tells the tale of the titular ghoul, a petrifying prestidigitator who punishes those who lack the Halloween spirit. With a spider-like grace and a silent charisma, he stalks the night to search for an audience for his macabre magic. At only ten minutes, The Jester creates a wonderful monster that could easily support a full-length feature. Heck, this mad magician has the potential to become a franchise figure! While there are some conceptual similarities to Sam from Trick ‘r Treat, The Jester stands on his own as a guardian of Halloween. For those looking for an early Halloween treat, check out The Jester below!

Inside (hehe ;) Review

(Back to Back Gaming goodies fer ya, courtesy of Mr. Andrew Peters. Thanks for this, Ho-rror Ho-mie!! Your vids are too cute!! 🙂 xoxo)

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Playdead’s first game Limbo was about a boy searching for his sister in Hell. Of course you wouldn’t know this, because the game doesn’t tell you. It has no direct narrative as to what is going on, but cleverly leaves it up to the player to figure it out as they play the game. And that’s what this review is; my interpretation of the game. Now, it’s not completely vague and a lot of the stuff is pretty easy to guess what is happening, so I did do a little research and it turns out there are many like minded folk, so keep this in mind as you are reading this review, that what I’m telling you is both my experience of the game and then comparing to others. There’s no dialogue or cutscenes to tell you what is happening, but rather you get subtle clues from objects or something happening in the background or something you have to overcome face to face. It was something that hadn’t really been done before and it was really fresh and cool, mixed with the art style, everything being silhouetted in the foreground and ominous music and puzzles varying in difficulty, Playdead made their mark. It was a semi-difficult, dark toned and yet rewarding adventure.

Their latest game, Inside, follows the same formula, but feels like it improves on them at the same time. , Inside is also a 3D side scrolling puzzle platformer, but takes things out of the shadows and gives them some color while keeping them vague. You play as a red shirted boy who is making his way through the woods while being chased – and avoiding detection – from faceless men. Now, I literally mean faceless. That’s one of the first things you will realize about the game as once you start, you are instantly dropped into this world; nobody has a face. At first, it may seem like a cool art direction, which it is, but as you play and you learn about what is happening and realizing who or what the these men are and what they are doing, it becomes clear as to why they are faceless. Shortly after, you see them loading dozens of people into trucks and driving away, but again, the reason is never told and leaves you to figure it out. As you march through the woods and through a cornfield, you happen upon a farm, but right away you will notice something very wrong; all of the animals are dead (with the exception of some cute chicks) and there seem to be some sort of parasitic worms. Beyond that, you venture into a rural area where people are being marched into what seems like a factory. Suddenly, you realize they don’t seem to be marching against their will, but almost as if they are being mind controlled. Further and further as you explore, even going as far as underwater exploration in a tiny little James Cameron sub, you find yourself in a lab and to get through it and to get answers, these mindless people seem to be helping you and this is an interesting part of the game. There are thing helmet devices scattered through the game that the player will need to use to control these people to help with puzzles. This may include, using brute strength in numbers to pull something open or to control someone elsewhere to open a door. These become increasingly difficult as the game progresses, but nothing that is too frustrating and I’m sure with a short amount of time, you can figure them out on your own. All of these will reveal answers, but will you like what you find at the end?

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As I was saying, the plot is never made clear, it’s never told directly to the player what is going on or what exactly anything is. You are left to figure that out through your adventure and it leaves it up to your own interpretation. You easily and quickly get a feel for the oppressive nature, like the population is being controlled by these men that seem to be guarding places or chasing after you with flashlights and dogs (that will rip you, a little kid, apart!), so you may guess that it’s the government. But, what exactly do they want with all these people? Why mind control them? Along my adventures, I was noticing all of these tubes that people seemed to be stuffed in, mixed with all of the dead animals, led me to believe that in this world people are being farmed for food. Yes, we got a Soylent Green situation happening here. I also made the conclusion that this probably took place during the early ‘80s from the aesthetics, but didn’t fully make this conclusion until at one point in the game you see a tape recorder and stacks of VHS tapes. By now, you start to realize how government controlled everything feels and the game’s George Orwell-ian vibe is thicker than oil. It’s a dark, dystopian 1980’s future and you don’t even realize it until you are nearing the end of the game. Now the end of the game is a little mind boggling as it kind of steps into Akira territory, but mixed with other subtle props in the background, you get the feeling that this was being controlled all along. Keep in mind that there is an alternative ending that is achieved by finding and destroying thirteen hidden orbs throughout the game that is a little more direct on what’s happening, but it’s not any happier.

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The game mechanics are rather easy, you just move left or right and jump when necessary. You can also grab objects to reveal passages or to move items to help you solve a puzzle. It’s easy and the game doesn’t prompt displays on how to move about or control, but rather treats you with some intelligence and eases you into how the game is played through increasingly difficult puzzles and situations. It doesn’t show you exactly what to do, but rather hints at how to go about figuring something out, so you aren’t left hanging, but you aren’t having your hand held either. However, it’s not just the puzzles that will be trying to stop you, it’s various things in the environment, like some sort of concussion blast that will literally blow this poor kid apart unless you time his movements right and use obstacles to block the blast. Another thing it a long haired, naked child that swims in the water and seemingly wants to drown you, thus forcing you to cause diversions or be very quick before either you run out of oxygen or you are pulled into the dark abyss.

I could keep going on, but Inside is a short experience (I beat it in just under two hours) that you should indulge in. It’s not about heavy handing a plot or theme to the player, but rather letting them figure it out and it manages to impact you with emotions from the oppressive imagery and what seems to be happening. I can’t wait to see what Playdead comes up with next. I’m sure it will involve horribly killing a child. (#DaretoDream -D.P.)

Movie Review: For the Love of Spock

This is a project I backed on Kickstarter, so I wanted to make sure someone else reviewed it, for un-bi-ass-ed-ness’s sake. 😉 Enter: Prince Adam (“Don’t mind if I do…” ;)), and his Superhero SciFi eXXXpertise. 🙂 Thanks for taking this one on for me, ho-mie!! (“That’s what he said…” 😉 xoxo)
“ An examination of the enduring appeal of Leonard Nimoy and his portrayal of Spock in Star Trek (1966).

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This film is definitely an examination and a celebration of Star Trek and Spock, yet director Adam Nimoy presents us with a deeper look at the man who helped propel that series and franchise to success, while at the same time, was creating the character that would become the pop culture icon known as Mr. Spock! That man was Leonard Nimoy, as well as Adam’s father. What we see is the story of a self made man, an entrepreneur. As a child, Leonard acted in local theater in the Boston area. The acting bug caught him and he decided to make a career out of it. Leonard Nimoy’s parents were dead set against him becoming an actor, but he was determined to do it anyway, so he hopped on a train and headed to California. To make ends meet, he worked many odd jobs such as assembling freezers and worked at a pet store, just to name a few. His patience would pay off. Pre- Star Trek, the actor would appear on film in Kid Monk Baroni, and on television in The Outer Limits and Gunsmoke. Star Trek is ultimately his most notable screen success, as it provided him with three seasons of television work, 5 starring film appearances, an animated series, video game voice overs and cameo appearances in the various updated incarnations of the franchise, both on TV and in the most recent J.J. Abrams films. Aside from Star Trek, Mr. Nimoy had a short stint on Mission Impossible. At first he enjoyed the role, as his character was a master of disguise, which afforded him the opportunity to play many roles. However, he found himself playing the same disguises over and over again. So he left the show and pursued theater, where he got rave reviews for his performance in Fiddler On the Roof, and even playing a Nazi officer, in a performance described as chilling in the documentary, where Nimoy became unrecognizable on stage to even his friends and family. Nimoy also tried his hand at singing and poetry. (Ghostface and I are fans. ;))

spock98As a film director, Leonard Nimoy directed Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, and 3 Men and A Baby. All three were very successful ventures at the box office. As hobbies, Leonard enjoyed flying his own small plane and photography. The film highlights all of these successes and shows that in a way Leonard Nimoy lived and realized his dream.

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I really appreciated that this documentary wasn’t just a puff piece. It did highlight the trials and tribulations that came with being such a beloved character on such a popular show. Adam Nimoy, Leonard’s son, as well as his daughter indicate that living with “Spock” is difficult to describe, as their dad wasn’t home much during the week, and when he was, it was essentially to eat dinner and rehearse lines for the next day as Spock. Nimoy wasn’t really around to just be able to hang out with. In the documentary, Nimoy admits to staying in character in between takes and at home. Spending most of his waking hours as the character, he found it hard to turn off Spock. Life got a little more stressful for Nimoy and his family, when a magazine article accidentally published his home address as his fan mail address. Not only was his home address flooded with fan mail, but some fans went overboard parking on his street, ripping out his shrubbery as a souvenir, following him home, and asking if they could come inside. Fans get attached and possessive of characters, but wow this is taking it to the extreme. As much as I hate the “Message Board Brigade”, at least they keep their lunacy to the message boards. To ensure the financial stability of his family after Star Trek, Leonard often opened up his home and granted access to his family for magazine family portraits. However Adam says that this eventually became a strain on the family, and Adam and his sister refused to appear in a photo shoot with their father one year as a means of protest. He highlights one family portrait, where you see none of the Nimoys smiling, which indicates their frustration. The struggles went beyond the fame associated with being Spock. The documentary discusses the actor’s lawsuit with Paramount over licensing rights to use his likeness as Spock on merchandise. The lawsuit went on for years, nearly preventing him from joining the feature films. That, coupled with the financial failure of his directorial effort for The Good Mother, and a divorce from his wife, led Nimoy’s drinking to get worse and worse, specifically in the 80’s. Even Adam Nimoy is very candid in the film about his own drug use. These factors led father and son led to estrangement. It was only after Leonard Nimoy remarried, and Adam had tragically lost his wife that the two men sought rehab, and eventually repaired their relationship. Adam reads a heartfelt letter written to him by his father, which was a piece of the puzzle that repaired their relationship. I loved that the film shows us both the good and the bad in Leonard’s life. While fans often blur the line between actor and character, this is a stark reminder that actors and actresses are just like us regular folk! Sure, their pay grade may differ from ours slightly. They succeed and fail and in that respect we’re one and the same, which in a way reinforces one of the themes at play in Star Trek.

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Speaking of Star Trek, this documentary makes one thing abundantly clear. Leonard Nimoy loved the character of Spock, and was extremely passionate about the franchise. Nimoy loved the character of Spock because he was the ultimate outsider, half human, and half Vulcan. He drew on the experience of his Jewish family, being outsiders and “alien” immigrants coming to America. The actor says he never saw Spock as cold and emotionless, instead playing him as someone who has control over his emotions, never showing them outwardly. After doing a guest spot on the Gene Roddenberry show The Lieutenant, Gene created the Spock role with Leonard Nimoy in mind for the part. Prior to Star Trek, the actor didn’t have an acting job that lasted more than two weeks. For Star Trek though, the creator was actually selling him on the idea of the show. Nimoy wasn’t sure the prosthetic ears would work, but Gene Roddenberry was adamant that he wanted to keep the pointy ears. In terms of hair and eyebrows, the actor contributed his thoughts to the look. The network passed on the initial pilot, and wanted it reshot with an entirely new cast. Gene Roddenberry fought to keep Nimoy, because his character’s look and his portrayal would add diversity to the cast. When the pilot went to series, the network wanted the pointy ears and jagged eyebrows gone, because they though Spock looked too devilish for Bible belt America. However, Roddenberry and Nimoy fought to keep the look. The level of respect admiration and co-operation between actor and producer/show creator was refreshing. Especially given the time period we are dealing with. An interesting little tidbit from the film, is that Leonard Nimoy shaped his portray of Spock to fit the captain he was working with. Nimoy says that in the first pilot he played Spock with more energy, because the actor playing Cpt. Pike was laid back. When Shatner came onboard and was more theatrical he decided to play Spock more laidback and reserved. After the show aired, Variety gave it a bad review, saying it wouldn’t last. Even friends who visited the set, told Nimoy he should get out of doing the show. However, Nimoy stuck to his gut and stayed loyal to his cast and crew. When Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner signed on to do Star Trek: The Animated Series, the network planned to use voice actors for other roles. However, Leonard Nimoy threatened not to participate if Nichelle Nichols and George Takei weren’t brought back as Uhura and Sulu respectively. This level of loyalty, which is rare in Hollywood, had me respecting the actor even more.

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In addition to the character’s appearance, Leonard Nimoy had influence on many of Spock’s classic character traits. Spock’s trademark line fascinatingly came about because of a scene were everyone was reacting to a potential alien attack. Nimoy decided Spock would see the event as a first contact learning experience and uttered the one word dialogue as such. Nimoy came up with the famed Vulcan death grip. The script called for Spock to hit an evil version of Kirk over the head with a pistol but, Nimoy suggested that Vulcan’s had powerful energy that Vulcan’s could emit from their fingertips, and due to his vast knowledge of human anatomy from Vulcan education, the simple grip in the right spot, could incapacitate a human. Even the Vulcan hand gesture is something Leonard Nimoy appropriated from his childhood. The hand gesture is part of the Jewish faith, and is part of a prayer ritual, that the actor saw at synagogue as a child. It stuck with him, and he first used it on Star Trek in the episode Amok Time. This character was as much created by Leonard Nimoy, as it was Gene Roddenberry, or any writer who worked on the series. His cast mates appeared in the documentary and all indicated that while their roles could be played by anyone, no one could play Spock the way Leonard did. Even current Spock Zachary Quinto said he was glad his version of Spock allowed for some variation from Nimoy’s portrayal, because he loved and revered Nimoy and his take on it. The documentary also mentioned that Star Trek and its fan base really kicked off the convention type event, as well as cosplay culture. Leonard was awestruck at the amount of people he saw at his first Star Trek convention and enjoyed interacting with fans in this setting, and tried to attend events such as this whenever he could.

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For the Love Of Spock is a documentary that succeeds in its mission. It celebrates both a long running television franchise, one of its most memorable characters, and the actor who brought him to life. It’s about having a dream, realizing it, experiencing a fall and picking yourself back up again. If you were a fan of Leonard Nimoy before, your fandom for this man will grow after watching this film, The film gave me some “inside baseball” in terms of Star Trek and Spock, that I never knew about. It made me smile and yes, I even shed a tear or two. By the end of this film you will get a sense on the impact Leonard Nimoy had on such a wide variety of actors. Fellow actors like Seinfeld’s Jason Alexander and Jim Parsons appear in the documentary, indicating that Leonard Nimoy influenced their acting technique. A writer for The Big Bang Theory even confirmed the obvious, that the character of Sheldon was based partly on Spock. Nimoy and his character reached beyond the profession of acting. Neil deGrasse Tyson, American astrophysicist credits Star Trek and Spock for partly advancing science to where it is today. Even NASA scientists and astronauts were interviewed, saying they got into their profession because of Star Trek, and Nimoy. After watching this documentary, there is no denying that Leonard Nimoy through Spock, made his mark on the world that will insure that he will live long and prosper in the minds and hearts of fans worldwide. That is an accomplishment that is absolutely fascinating.

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Movie Review: Model Hunger (2016)

(Submitted by Mr. TyGr…Big thanks and hugs to our newest Ho-rror- reviewin’ Ho-mie!! 🙂 xoxo)

Full disclosure: This Reviewer is a huge fan of horror icon Debbie Rochon, making her directorial debut here, so the anticipation for this movie was palpable. It’s a shame that the expectations exceeded the effort- which has nothing to do with the end result that is quite satisfactory if not immediately synthesized.

Let me explain: on the initial viewing I had more questions than answers. So it’s a relief that a bonus feature is a commentary track by the director so light could be shed on the darkness, both literal and figurative, of my confusion.

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Every project begins with the script. I could see how this one would attract the attention it did. A commendable effort by Writer James Morgart who tackles issues of gender bias and sexuality in society for women that are addressed in the form of the modern equivalent of a Greek chorus with a TV personality, played by Suzi Lorraine (Wrath of the Crows).

Suzy is the host of “Suzy’s Secret”, a lampoon of home shopping shows, where she berates the audience to cast off preconceived notions of body image, and for women to just enjoy that pizza and steak. But, this goes back to the aforementioned confusion: why is this woman obviously in a fat suit?

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Here is where the tone of the film shifted from thriller to Troma-esque comedy (a nod to Rochon’s roots?) which took me out of the film. I thought, what a missed opportunity to have a ‘plus-size’ actress address real issues. Taking nothing away from Lorraine’s over the top performance, which is then over-shadowed by the outlandish antics of real-life bulky ‘babe’ Babette Bombshell.

So, what is Model Hunger? It is a skin magazine from the 60’s (seen in flashback) that ‘Ginny’ posed for that gave her initial fame but was based on her willingness to ‘put out’. Having it snatched away are the root of her psychosis (an inability to ~not~ kill everyone who vexes her).

Never thought I’d write this but, the role of Ginny is a tour de force performance given by genre legend Lynn Lowry (The Crazies) who carries the piece as a certifiably-crazed southern belle with a hankering for human flesh.

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When two high school Cheerleaders have to go neighborhood soliciting to buy uniforms, they find themselves in Ginny’s house at first charmed then harmed. Ginny doesn’t confine her passive-aggressive personality and killings to her home.

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She goes to an auto shop run by Colin (Brian Fortune, Game of Thrones) and his inept mechanic Verill (Goth Rocker, Voltaire). We HEAR Ginny’s thoughts and desires to kill, and she carries it out on Colin in one of the more arousing scenes where she tortures him, seductively slithering and slicing in lingerie.

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On the way back from the mechanic she picks up a hitchhiker with dreams of being a starlet that sets her off and, you guessed it, she winds up in Ginny’s basement as a snack. And, a Jehovah’s Witness (Kaylee Williams, Pork Chop 2 & 3) knocks on the wrong door and becomes the final victim.

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All the while, moving in next door to Ginny are Sal (Carmine Capobianco, Galactic Gigolo) and Debbie (Tiffany Shepis, Tales of Halloween) a troubled married couple. More questions: what necessitated them to move to this new place?; what jobs do they have?; why would she be married to him? (a shlubby hubby), and why would he be married to her? (a pill-popping hot mess) if they detest each other? She’s instantly suspicious of Ginny in that happens-only-in-the-movies way and becomes the reluctant heroine. Although, when you have Tiffany Shepis in your movie, you’ve got a pro who makes any role work. (“Word!!” -D.P.)

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The climax is a trifecta of terror talent in a horror hierarchy (veteran Lowry, established Shepis, and new-comer Williams) in a scene that, let’s just say, gives new meaning to eating pussy.

With capable and mood-setting cinematography by Wolfgang Meyer, and an evocative and spot-on music score by Composer Harry Manfredini (Friday the 13th), the director delivers a thought provoking and entertaining film. But, is it horror with humor or humorous horror? It took me a couple of viewings to ascertain. For the casual watcher it could get lost in translation.

It was intriguing to see how Rochon, an accomplished horror actress, would handle the oft thought of exploitation of women in the genre, but she handled it with a deft and sure hand making her debut a winner. This Reviewer looks forward to more from her, in front of and behind the camera, as well as from the talented ensemble of Model Hunger.

Ho-stess’s PS- A lil’ Debbie Rochon appreciation fer ya. 🙂

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Ho-stess’s PPS– I freaking looooooooooove me some Voltaire, too!! (Though, sadly, his nude pics are proving a lil’ harder to find… 😉 xoxo)

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