Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Video Vault of Mora Tau 9/30/15!

We're less that 90 days away from the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens so let's take 12 minutes and look at my favorite Star Wars spoof of all time:

Back when my family first got Showtime - the cable channel followed the traditions of television up to that time - every movie started on the hour or half hour. Of course, some movies have run times that don't fit that prerequisite. Nowadays, they end one movie, identify the channel, tell you what's on that night, and basically start the next movie.

Back in the day, if a movie ran, say, 126 minutes - like the theatrical release of Battlestar Galactica - Showtime would start it at 1:00pm, and when it ended at 3:06pm - they would then show short subjects to fill the time so that the next movie could start at 3:30pm.

And, as a matter of fact, when Battlestar Galactica aired on Showtime, they licensed Hardware Wars to fill half of that 24 minutes - and showed another short and some previews for the channel every time Galactica aired. I watched BG several times that month - but I think I watched Hardware Wars every single time BG was on. I LOVED it.

I still think it's hilarious. I do miss the version that originally aired on Showtime - as the one above is an edited version. Yes, filmmaker Ernie Fosselius pulled a George Lucas on his movie. Originally, in the briefing sequence, it ran longer, and at one point the picture on the screen he points to showed a naked woman. It was very brief and from the distance hard to see any real detail - but the director has taken that out to make the short more family friendly. That bit has been chopped out and the remaining two bits seamlessly blended together.

I memorized EVERY WORD of that briefing scene and still remember it to this day - and the missing chunk in the short now totally throws me off. In order for it to cut back together cleanly - they cut out "Follow that baby down to the spherical decombustion atmospheric helio servo tubes"  and then it came back to "and the pneumatic centrifugal antigravity shield deflectors" and went on.

(If we're ever in the same space and you ask, I will recite the whole scene for you.)

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Maniacal Movie Poster Monday #231!

Spaceways  (Lippert Pictures, 1953)

One of those British flicks starring an American that they made throughout the 50's. I haven't seen this one, but I imagine it would be a slightly slow drama with some charming special effects. I'd watch it, certainly.

The Astrologer  (December 1975)

 Before The Exterminator, here was James Glickenhaus's first movie - with Exterminator II's director Mark Buntzman along for the ride. I don't know much else about it - but I was intrigued there was another completely different movie the same year called The Astrologer. Hmmm.

Juggernaught  (Grand National Pictures, 1937)
Not a horror movie per se - but more a crime drama as a couple works to poison someone slowly to death. It was made during Boris's brief return to England after his first round of Universal Horror Movies before he moved back to Hollywood for most of the rest of his career.

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Saturday Night at the Movies 9/26/15!

Who cares what picture we see?

Howard Platt would - if he can stop remembering when he was Connie Sellecca's boyfriend before she moved on to Gil Gerard and then John Tesh - so we will be making this tonight's choice...

Man here's a good one! Three big time action stars! Fun villainy from Jay Robinson (Dr. Shrinker himself)! A supporting cast that includes Howard Platt, Sheila Frazier, Alex Rocco, and a young Corbin Bernsen! Scads of action and stunts!

When crazed white supremacists cook up a plan to use genetically modified poisons to wipe out the African American populations of three major US cities - it's going to take "The Big Three"  to put a stop to it. Sit back and enjoy watching Jim Brown, Fred "The Hammer" Williamson, and Jim Kelly decimate an army of racist crackers.

This one is wonderfully non-PC - starting with an opening scene of pallets of dead African American men stored in a basement and with enough N-bombs spewed out to make Quentin Tarantino blush - and almost non stop action - produced by Harry Bernsen (Corbin's dad - explaining his presence) and directed by Gordon Parks Jr. (Shaft).

It just joined the video vault in a four movie Jim Kelly set - so we could be watching it - and any or all of the other three movies - at any time - if you want to come over to my place and get your kicks along with me - even this very night.

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Maniacal Movie Poster Monday #230!

Theme Week!

1 Serial, 3 Chapters!

The Whispering Shadow  (Mascot Pictures, 1933)

Here's three posters from a 12 chapter serial starring the one and only Bela Lugosi. I think I have this in the video vault - but I haven't watched it if I do. I would have loved going to the movies each week and seeing a chapter of this across three months. I still really enjoy watching serials.

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Saturday Night at the Movies 9/19/15!

Who cares what picture we see?

Hoyt Axton might - if you presented it with white cheddar popcorn - and while we pop that up and get to sprinkling - here's tonight's choice...

The incredible and short career of DIY filmmaker H.B. Halicki never fails to fascinate me. Halicki was an auto parts and junk car entrepreneur who decided to make a movie - which resulted in the original Gone in 60 Seconds in 1974. That movie was successful, but Halicki didn't make another movie for eight years - but finally he did - and here it is - another explosion of  automotive bedlam - with a couple of real actors added in this time.

I haven't seen it yet - but I did just add it to the video vault on DVD - and you could drive like a bat of hell over to my house to watch it with me at any time - even this very evening!

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Celebrity Endorsement: Vernon Wells!

I first encountered Vernon Wells watching The Road Warrior on VHS way back when...

....and he turned up in other fun genre movies like Commando...

...and Circuitry Man....

I'm also pleased to report that Vernon Wells has a discerning eye for good pop culture blogging too...

Thanks, Mr. Wells!

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Maniacal Movie Poster Monday #229!

Pharaoh's Curse  (United Artists, 1957)

This was the kind of movie that Universal-International generally knocked out of the park. Sadly, this wasn't U-I - so it's not all that great. Nice poster, though.

Drive Me Crazy  (Twentieth Century Fox, 1999)

Not a movie you'd generally expect to see here - but I did see it in the theater (I was a reviewer for a local entertainment guide) and just because it's not expected to be here - here it is.

The Tattoo Connection  (World Northal, 1979)

Here's a movie made overseas in 1978 - and somewhere along the way it was given the title Black Belt Jones 2. Whether or not it was ever an actual sequel to Jim Kelly's 1974 hit - I'd like to see it.

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Saturday Night at the Movies 9/12/15!

Who cares what picture we see?

George Romero does - because he's a hell of a guy - and since he's just been the first guest announced for "my" horror convention in March - let's celebrate that with this one...

Truly one of the greatest movies ever made - notice I did not feel the need to include the word "horror" there - this is a Gold Standard movie that holds up completely to this day.

To read my full review of the movie - please go HERE.

For this post - I have several editions of the movie ready to go - and we can go with a less pristine version hosted by Elvira or a remastered edition that looks crisp and clean - I'm good with either - and we could be doing that this very night - if you want to congregate outside my house to watch it with me!

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

TenList Presents: 10 Shows That Had More Than One Spinoff!

All in the Family - which has had more spin offs than any other TV show.

All in the Family - Archie, Edith, daughter Gloria, and her hubby Mike.

The Jeffersons - the Bunkers' neighbors spun off to their
own show when they moved on up to a swanky apartment
in their show.

Maude - Edith's liberal cousin got her own show after sparring with
Archie a few times on the original show.

Gloria - Archie and Edith's daughter left Mike and
moved West - working for crusty vet Burgess
Meredith while raising son Joey - in a one season

The original series spun off into a sequel series that centered
around Archie buying his favorite bar and running it.

704 Hauser - In the strangest spin off - twenty years after the original
show premiered, they tried a new show set in the house Archie and Edith
had lived in, now with an African American family moving in - and father
John Amos was nearly as short sighted as Archie was. This one didn't last long.

The Mary Tyler Moore Show

The Mary Tyler Moore Show - Mary and her friends and co-workers
and her life in Minneapolis. 

Rhoda - Mary's best friend moved away to her own show that ran for years.

Phyllis - Mary's other pal also moved into a show of her own - but
this one did not last very long.

Lou Grant - in the strangest spin off here, Mary's boss graduated from the
original sitcom into an hour long drama series that had him running a news
bureau in a different city. This one also did very well, running for several

Happy Days 

Happy Days - an early cast shot.

Laverne and Shirley - the girls dated Fonzie and
Richie a couple of times, then got their own show
that ran eight seasons.

Mork and Mindy - a weird spinoff in that Happy Days introduced an alien
character who then time traveled to the then modern day for the series.

They broke the young lovers off to their own show
but it didn't last long and they hightailed it back to
Happy Days and finished out the run.

Out of the Blue - Here's the winner for weirdest
spinoff for this show - another fantasy concept
started on the otherwise sorta realistic Happy Days
about an angel - who then also showed up in the then
modern day for a brief run on his own series.


M*A*S*H* - not the original cast, but the longest running lineup in the
Korean War series.

AfterM*A*S*H* - Three characters spun off to a two season run working
in a veteran's hospital after the war.

W*A*L*T*E*R* - A few years later, they tried to get a show out of Radar
becoming a police officer back home. They only got the pilot made, but that
still counts...


Cheers - where everybody knows your name.

The Tortellis - Carla's ex-husband and his new family got
their own show for a little while.

Frasier - when Cheers ended, the crew continued working on a spinoff about Frasier and
his life in Seattle with his friends and family. The two shows ran a total of twenty years (!).

Three’s Company 

Three's Company - the roommates and their landlords.

The Ropers - the landlords spun off to their own short lived show.

Three's a Crowd - after the original series ended, Jack and his
girlfriend spun off to another series with the great Robert Mandan.

The Andy Griffith Show 

The Andy Griffith Show - there were more cast members, but
here you get four.

Gomer Pyle USMC - they sent goofy Gomer off to the Marines where he annoyed
Sergeant Carter for several seasons.

Mayberry RFD - When Andy Griffith was ready to pack
it in - they decided to continue the show - spinning off
with the supporting characters of the last couple of
seasons carrying on for a few more.

The Dukes of Hazzard 

The Dukes of Hazzard - All of the stars and the car.

Enos - they sent the deputy off to his own show
as he went to work as a big city detective. It didn't
last and Enos returned to the original show for
the rest of the run.

The Dukes - they got two Saturday morning seasons out of a worldwide
car race between the Dukes and Boss Hogg and Rosco - with all of the
original voices.


The detectives on the case, and looking for "just the facts."

Adam-12 - the spinoff followed the adventures of uniform
officers Malloy and Reed - with the late great Martin Milner
and Kent McCord starring.

Emergency! - and the other spinoff focused on the
paramedic side of things.

The Golden Girls 

The Golden Girls - the ladies looking their best.

Empty Nest - the ladies' neighbor got his own show and they crossed over

The Golden Palace - After the original show ended on NBC, three of
the ladies moved to CBS for another season as they ran a hotel
with Cheech Marin as the hotel's chef.

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!