Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare

Today, you get a bonus movie, because… well, The Apple.  Yes, you should probably give it a go, but when you’re done humming along to songs about BIM, you’re going to want to watch a really good movie to shock you back into wanting to be alive.  So, let’s get you cheered up a bit.  In 1987, Canadian rocker, historian, bodybuilder, screenwriter, and actor Jon Mikl Thor (of the heavy metal band Thor) made a movie called Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare.  In some places, places where it’s not illegal to use the word “hell,” it’s called The Edge of Hell.
Rock n Roll Nightmare Triton
It’s time to embarrass the devil.
The movie starts with a bit of a cold opening, but then quickly jumps to a cool band called Triton arriving at a remote farmhouse in Canada to record their new album in a barn-studio.  Actually, it doesn’t quickly jump to Triton’s arrival- as with Manos and Birdemic, you have to watch Triton drive to the location, which takes about 20 minutes.  When they reach the farmhouse, though, there’s evil, and it starts turning the band members into demons.  OR the evil creates demonic doppelgangers.  I don’t know.
Rock n Roll Nightmare Duckie
Duckie gives the band a pep talk.
Triton performs awesome songs, and sex is had by various couples, even with demons and evil all around them.  You’ll be rocking out and watching ’80s boobs like never before.  Then, just when things look bleak for Jon Mikl Thor’s character (he’s obviously the star in his own movie), there’s a huge revelation that turns everything on its head.  After that, he fights the devil and the movie ends.
Rock n Roll Nightmare Minions
Triton’s sex toys.

Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare was filmed in SEVEN DAYS on a 100,000 dollar budget, but you would never know either of those things by watching this movie.  Just kidding- one of those two numbers will be really apparent, and the other is mind-boggling.  Characters engage in pointless dialog, band members are demons then maybe aren’t, heavy metal is played… in the end, with the big reveal I mentioned, the movie makes complete sense and it’s entirely rad.

Get it on Amazon.

The Apple

To celebrate the launch of Assassin’s Creed 4, let’s talk about The Apple.

The Apple Cool 90's Party
Cool ’90s Party.

The year is 1980, and the U.S. is about to enter the most magical era in all of human history.  Before it can, though, it needs to let go of the ’70s.  The only way to do this is to release one last pseudo-disco sci-fi rock opera epic.  Enter: The Apple, a low budget Biblical allegory built around the theme of conformity v. rebellion.  Whether you hate musicals, or you enjoy some of them, there’s no reason to like this movie… unless camp-value is important to you at all.

The Apple it's an Apple
The aforementioned apple.

Alphi and Bibi are an awful folk rock duo from Canada who have traveled to America to battle it out on American Idol (read: the Worldvision Song Festival in the year 1994).  So, we’re treated to an awesome vision of a sort of dystopian ’90s as imagined by a dying era.  Even though they are absolutely HORRIBLE, and no one would ever think they were good, let alone great, Alphi and Bibi are WINNING THE COMPETITION.  That is, until BIM interferes.  BIM.  You’ll be hearing that word a lot.  Boogalow International Music, aka BIM, is a record company and possibly an oppressive totalitarian empire, and everyone likes them even though there’s nothing to like about them.  Sort of like Apple.

The Apple Devil
Spoiler alert: turns out he’s the devil.

Defeated through trickery, Alphi and Bibi are sad, but then Mr. Boogalow (a word Alphi is never able to properly pronounce) offers them a record deal.  Alphi has a vision of the apocalypse and declines, while Bibi dives right in to a world of hell orgies and really fun drug use.  The rest of the movie has Alphi being ineffectual and useless while living in a small apartment and flirting with his elderly landlord, but eventually rescuing Bibi so that they can live with a community of bums until Mr. Topps/God arrives in a flying car to take all the good people to live on a new planet.  The movie ended with me feeling like I’d been initiated into Mormonism.

The Apple God's Arrival
So then God arrives in his sky car.

It’s worth watching, and there’s a Rifftrax version.  Would I watch it more than once?  I’m not sure.

Troll 2

Whenever it comes up in conversation that I watch bad movies, 9 times out of 10, someone will say “Oh, like Troll 2?”  Yes, like Troll 2.  This should have been one of the first ones on my list, since everyone already knows about it, but it’s not actually one of my favorites.  It’s got a lot of great moments, sure, and in those 9 times out of 10 I just mentioned, half of those times, people will go ahead and quote this:

 Yeah, yeah, yeah.  It’s hard to argue with that, but at the same time, the movie also has some pretty lengthy boring parts.  While Troll 2 is a good starter movie, I’m not sure I’d come back to it again and again.  I think it’s comparable to Silent Night Deadly Night 2, actually.  The two have a lot of similarities, though in the end, I think SNDN2 is the better of the two.

Troll 2 stinkeye
There’s definitely top-notch, Batman & Robin-quality acting

This movie was originally called Goblins, but someone decided to call it Troll 2 instead, even though it doesn’t have anything to do with Troll.  There aren’t even any trolls in the movie.  The script was written by two people who didn’t speak English, and the story revolves around goblins who turn people into plants and then eat them.

Troll 2 Kid's Dingus
Unlike Dalton, this kid WILL show you his dick.

Troll 2 works well in a group setting, and there’s a Rifftrax version, too, though I haven’t seen it yet, so I’ll leave that up to you.  At the very least, the movie is worth watching, and you could probably watch it multiple times, but whether or not you have it in your collection will be up to you.

Raise Up Lights

Raise up lights. An old signal using a flint, atop a watchtower. Power hour. Our our (hour). Doorves. Smelling like a small man on a big day. Party tank. Ovens over Tuesday mining drove alep shmoo. Oiv. Was. Billbank and Sherman Butt, family name was once Bute now Butt. Sherman Butt and Billbank Butt are friends and brothers, they share their lovers and they love beer. They listen to Radiohead but they aren’t stupid, they went to college and never listened to college rock for longer than a few minutes because it wasn’t their scene. The Butts were epic and needed epic music, out in the rain in the gray city darkened by supernatural night. They’re the ones to rise up, to save the day… Billbank and Sherman.

Eyes like sushis, and eyes… and plants, too, flora like both sushis and like eyes. To some, it’s a land of horrors. Not hell, exactly, but a nightmarish place. A place not reached in sleep, but through the other, less known horrors of reality. Falling through codes. Beyond the geometric structures. First, he wakes to a slapping sound, but it’s important to note that he does in fact wake- thus it’s not a dream. Oilive. Gruz. Myep. That was the end.

Two peach pits!? Sherman Butt was ecstatic. Nearly hysterical. Surely this was the end of days or a good omen or some nonsense. Not even on the internet had he ever heard of a peach having 2 pits. No one had even attempted to fake it with photo-editing software or grainy old found-footage. The idea was apparently so inconceivable that no one had ever conceived it. Yet here it was, in Sherman Butt’s hot little hands. He felt the urge to get somewhere, but he didn’t know where to go. Holden’s house? The bank? To where prostitutes stood? His mind was on fire. Sherman hadn’t lost reason or control, but he was in some sort of lucid reverie or psychotic breakdown…

Gold Bond. Your name is Gold Bond? Like the stuff? The stuff? Cream. I’ve never heard of that, no.

Firehead

Firehead Laser Eyes
Let me just heat this rock up for you.

In the late 80’s, the Soviets had a guy who could shoot lasers out of his eyes, and they called him Firehead. When Firehead refuses to kill a bunch of Estonians, he defects to the west to find a free country to live in and probably also to avoid Soviet retribution. Skip ahead two years and Firehead is blowing up munitions factories for “unknown reasons.” Jack Lemmon is here, playing Warren Hart, and the movie mostly follows him trying to track Firehead down and ask him why he’s blowing everything up. Warren is a chemist, by the way, obviously your first choice in tracking down a dangerous laser eye man. Crazy, right? Well, they know it doesn’t make a lot of sense, and that’s why they team their chemist up with a sexy lady assassin. I mean an assassin who’s a sexy lady, not an assassin who kills sexy ladies. She’s in the military, or something.  Somehow, Martin Landau and Christopher Plummer are also in this movie.

Firehead's eyes
Hie thee, villains! I’m FIREHEAD.

Warren’s only friend in the movie is a horrible little girl whose voice makes you want to die. She helps him solve science and look for Firehead. REALLY read everything I’ve written so far. The movie’s called Firehead, I shouldn’t even have to justify it.  Firehead can shoot lasers, stop bullets, and even, out of nowhere, teleport.   There’s a secret society planning to use Firehead’s destruction of munitions facilities to their advantage so they can take over the world.  I don’t know.  Also, Firehead has his own theme song, and it’s entirely awesome.  You could definitely watch this movie on its own, but there’s a Rifftrax version, too, and they do a pretty good job of getting you through the movie’s lulls.  Firehead is worth watching.

Showgirls

Like The Room, Showgirls is a difficult movie to write about, because it’s so layered, and so intentionally & unintentionally brilliant, that I don’t have the kind of time I would need to properly get into it.  There’s so much going on, and the characters are amazing. It’s another of a small handful of movies I’ve seen more times than I can remember.  There are many ways to interpret it and to think about it… it’s really the sort of thing best left to an actual discussion, rather than a few paragraphs on the internet.

Showgirls Nomi Hitchhiking
Only the lonely, Nomi Malone.

Basically, Showgirls follows a highly unlikeable protagonist named Nomi Malone as she travels through the circles of Hell to become who she is destined to be: an even worse person than she already is.  She’s accompanied on this journey by a cast of horrible people, all with their own horrible problems and shortcomings (Al and Henrietta are my favorites- I’ve had trouble figuring out whether they’re married or brother and sister…  I think they’re married).  Nomi is by far the worst person in the movie, though.  She’s awful, spiteful, stupid, and possibly bipolar.  She goes insane at the drop of a hat.  Just… if you haven’t seen it, check out this sweet moment in which Nomi’s fairy godparents stop in to tell her just how proud they are of her:

Beautiful, right?  Showgirls is legendary, and when it was released, it was a giant bomb thanks to an unfair public.  This really shouldn’t even be considered a “so bad it’s good” movie, because even though there are some good-bad elements, the movie itself can stand outside of that lens and exist as a semi-serious film.  Seriously.  Try watching it several times, try thinking about it in new ways each time you watch it, and you may well start to see it in new, deeper ways.  We’ve watched this movie numerous times and there are so many ways to see it, it’s literally like watching a new movie every time.  Well, once you get past 8 or 9 viewings, maybe not, but there’s a lot to take in, and there are many payoffs, especially when you get beyond watching the movie ironically.

Showgirls Negotiation
She smiles like s shark, but her head is like a tropical fish.

Showgirls is one of my favorites, and I recommend owning it.

Todd Russell, Chrunchytown PA

Todd Russell, Chrunchytown PA, eating Oklahoma flapjacks. Drills sound in the background- the sound of construction, corruption. Mopes. Moaps and oats. Two guys have a dumb argument, you can hear them from across the street, though neither raises their voice. Clobber. Someone thinks “I wish they would fight.” Lost in thought, this person walks into traffic and is hit by a car. Possibly a taxi.

Words in burns. Craaawww! Says to officer, the policeman. Phillip Polly, the policeman. That’s how Mike Jacobs, the postman, saw himself. He never believed in ghosts, but after becoming one, he began to rethink his beliefs. An archday, a fortnight. A egg. Aegg. Aeggon. Strange Aeggons. Sailing ships, sophomoric faggot “THAT WORD!” says running and screaming people. Arglesby. Formerly Arglesbee, by way of Spain by way of Canada by way of Spain. Arglesby leads and is leader of the running and screaming people. This isn’t a movement or culture, just a thing that happens, and when it does, it is sometimes with Arglesby, who leads.

Grass in the cracks of butts in pants that don’t quite fit, green tufts over belt loops. Vegetable. Is grass a vegetable? It’s a plant. So is these guys, with the pants. The green tufts. Side effects. Just effects, really. Because A, B, C & D. Just effects. Unintended consequences, maybe, but just effects. Additional. Subtractional Effects inlcude: Non-existent things. Barcodes. Watch batteries. Mexican stiltmen. Wum. Wum, by the way, being very popular. No ad campaign campaign. An add campaign. Add Wum to your life.

No, we haven’t gotten them yet. Shoot. Here… put it… any problems last time? Distress. Fuzziness. Other people’s thoughts- ok, so find out- I would, I would OK uhm He’s on 3 we… on every 3 weeks now – and what happens if… Other people’s thoughts. Not what their thoughts ARE, but what they ARE thinking. They weren’t, before. They are now, which is weird. Changes things. New development. Been almost 3 weeks now. A long, long time ago. Another collaboration day. I wish we had that when we were kids. Yep, gotta collaborate. With Wum. Wum makes collaboration EASY:

in BG, sound of adult laughing, fighting game, baby noises.

The Room

The Room Tommy Wiseau
Do you understand life?

Do I even have to talk about The Room at this point?  It’s legendary.   If ever there was a Perfect Storm of a movie, it would be this one.  It’s amazing on so many levels, and one of the few movies I’ve watched more than 15 times.  If my copy were a VHS tape, it would be worn out by now.  It’s got a cult following, the internet is full of screencaps, clips, memes, and reviews.  If you haven’t seen The Room yet, you’re either new to watching these sorts of movies, or your commitment to the cause is dubious.  Writing about this one could take me all day- there’s so much to talk about, point out, analyze, and reflect on that I’m not going to do any of that.  The Room is worth owning, end of story.

After you’ve watched it, play the game.  Then Read Greg Sestero‘s book, The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside the Room, The Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made.

Road House

Road House is a classic movie, surely you’ve seen it by now.  If you haven’t, here’s the rundown:

Road House Car Ride
Cool friends having cool times.

Patrick Swayze is Dalton, a professional bouncer with a degree in philosophy.  He’s not called a bouncer, though, he’s called a “cooler.”  Like other famous bouncers, everyone is clamoring for Dalton.  Anyone with a bar, night club, and dance hall wants this guy working their scene.  He’s King Bouncer, he’s amazing, and he’s not going to show you his dick.

When he gets hired to work at the Double Deuce, a bar in Missouri (of all places), things get nutty because he ends up in a conflict with the local rich guy, who will beat up and kill your friends when he doesn’t get his way.  He’ll blow up your business, burn down your house, crush your cars with a monster truck, and do any kind of over-the-top illegal dumbass thing he can think to do, because he’s the small town rich guy, and no one can stop him.  No one except Dalton, presumably.

Road House Bad Guys
The bad guy and his cool henchman.

Dalton’s not alone, though.  He’s got backup in the form of Sam Elliot, playing super-legendary veteran cooler Wade Garrett.  Mostly, though, Dalton’s got to solve his own problems, and he does this by killing people and falling in love with “Doc,” the best pizza delivery girl in town.  Just kidding, she’s a doctor.  So, when you’re rich or when you’re awesome, the police can’t touch you, and your best gal will get over watching you kill a man.  That’s what Road House taught me.

Road House eagle claw or something
You can see the exhaustion and danger in his face.

I think the overall consensus is that this is a great B-Movie.  If you haven’t seen it, you can decide for yourself, but I think Road House is worth having in your collection.  It’s a movie you can go back to several times.  There’s a Rifftrax commentary, to boot, but I haven’t heard it yet.

Get it on Amazon.

Riki-Oh: The Story of Ricky

Riki Oh Head Punch
This movie may have more blood and gore than the Gwar movie.

In 2001, prisons have become privatized (the movie was ahead of its time).  Ricky Oh has been sentenced to 10 years for killing a crime boss.  This is all you really need to know about the story, because the story is no reason to watch Riki-Oh: The Story of Ricky.

Continue reading “Riki-Oh: The Story of Ricky”