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Old 12-17-2017   #531
Robert Adam Gilmour
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Girl With A Broomstick - 70s Czech supernatural comedy. Since the soundtrack was released by Finders Keepers I was expecting something a little more interesting but it's somewhere along the lines of a Czech version of I Dream Jeannie or Sabrina The Teenage Witch.
But I can't say I regret seeing it because the witch girl Saxana looks so awesome with her hair and costume (people should cosplay as her), the main boy is cute too.
There was a sequel in 2011.

Long Live Ghosts - 70s Czech supernatural musical for kids. I bought this on a whim without knowing anything about it and I wish I hadn't. It features mostly children acting and singing and you might find it cute or annoying. I didn't watch it properly and ended up fast-forwarding through a lot of it. One thing that really impressed me is the green screen techniques (adult actors playing miniature people who work among the children), this is a low budget film and there are big American films in the 80s that didn't have green screen anywhere near this convincing. I was kind of stunned how seamless it was most of the time.

Portrait Of Hell - I postponed buying this for years because I wanted to read the Ryunosuke Akutagawa story first, but I've been #### at reading these years and I really wanted to see this. It's really good and unlike some of my other favourite Japanese period ghost films (which are often about the payoff scenes), it's good throughout.
It's about a morbid artist's struggle with a lord who dictates what he paints, the consequences of mistreating his daughter and Japanese-Korean racism.
I saw it on a slightly rough quality dvd so I'd love to see a remastered bluray of this, it would probably look very fine. Arrow, Criterion or Eureka should get on it.

Ginseng King/Three Headed Monster - fairly violent 80s children's action fantasy from Thailand. Features a warrior princess wearing a sort of jungle girl outfit, giant humanoids, a big ice sword, two ginseng creatures but oddest of all is a vampire fanged Nazi zombie who constantly salutes Hitler and is transfixed by a Buddhist swastika.
It uses/steals Mike Oldfield's Killing Fields soundtrack and I don't know if that's an obstacle to getting this a wider release today. The film is okay, more of an interesting little oddity than anything, should have been a bit shorter. Watch it on youtube but the Wu Tang Collection channel gives it a completely misleading preview image of a woman in a bikini.

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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #532
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Here I'm talking about four Taiwanese films starring Hsiao-Lao Lin, including the Child Of Peach trilogy. I don't know why but she used to play male roles a lot (including these four films), not simply the common trope of women disguised as men. If the plot hadn't told you she was supposed to be playing boys, you'd never know that's what she's doing. I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I really wasn't sure it was her in Magic Warriors, but all the databases say it is her. She's very cute, charming and I love her costumes.

It's worth noting that the first two Child Of Peach films feature men playing evil women and seduce some of the male heroes, this is played for humor but the second time is odd in that a masculine ghost woman (offscreen) ####s a comedy sidekick's brains out.

However outlandish all this sounds, keep in mind these are all low budget, although Child Of Peach is a bit more expensive looking. I assumed that these are all children's films but I'm not sure with all this violence, sex and gross out.

Kung Fu Wonder Child - Includes hopping vampires, a monster man, an evil sorcerer who turns into a 2D animated dragon, a facehugger and lots of toilet humour. Hsiao-Lao Lin dresses the same here as she does in the Child Of Peach films. This is reasonably entertaining but doesn't do anything well enough for me to recommend it much. The way the 2D dragon fights the characters and sight of a villain's spirit magically growing from a monster man's forehead were quite interesting though.

Child Of Peach - Based on the Japanese Momotaro legend. Features a Kabuki looking demon with red hair and white skin, large magic peaches that assemble into a big peach creature, monster people, a little fairy girl, a trio of children who can turn into animals or turn parts of their bodies into animal parts (a bird girl, a dog boy and a monkey boy). This is easily the best of the trilogy, with better effects, more impressive settings and use of real animals.

Magic Of Spell - a big downgrade from Child Of Peach but if you have the patience to get past of the lousy drama and comedy, the action scenes are quite imaginative, better and faster than the first film and still has some nice settings. The bird girl looks really cool in this, one transformation a bit odder this time. The thousand year old Ginseng boy forcing the Peach Boy to eat him is quite memorable too.

Magic Warriors - A further downgrade with less to redeem it. Despite a greater quantity of colorful characters transforming into animals, plants and objects, and a little boy doing a watery #### all over villains faces, it's mostly just boring. It's counted as a Child Of Peach film but it has none of the same characters. Hsiao-Lao Lin plays Little Flying Dragon this time, with different hair and more makeup.

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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #533
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Magic Of The Universe - Quite similar to Ginseng King but more drawn out and sleepy. Includes a swamp man, a rubbery bunny with a television screen stomach, a flamboyantly dancing demon and a progressively more grotesque evil queen with a large pulsating head and the most prolonged villainous laugh I've ever seen. It's a bit disappointing but if youre in the mood for a sleepy but quite cruel fantasy film for kids(?), you might give this a go.

The Signalman - A fine BBC adaptation of a Dickens story. It was one of the first ghost stories I read, so my memory is hazy but this version seems to add a lot.

House Of Terrors/Ghost Of The Hunchback/Kaidan Semushi Otoko - Has many similarities to The Haunting but outright steals the bending door scene. But also features a pervert father in law who is also a war criminal, a mysterious hunchback and a medium being possessed by an evil ghost. Fairly decent.

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #534
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Re: Movie Recommendations


A very detailed video essay on Mexican vampire films in several parts (you'll also learn a bit about Mexican wrestlers and comics). This essayist has also done videos on Mexican mummy films, examinations of world war 2 propaganda on comic covers and many other things.

I finally know where that German Robles face I've seen on so many cover and poster paintings comes from now.

To watch:
El Vampiro (1957)
Santo Vs Las Mujeres Vampiro
El Vampiro Y El Sexo
El Vampiro Sangriento/The Bloody Vampire
La Invasión De Los Vampiros/The Invasion Of The Vampires
Ángeles Y Querubines/Angels And Cherubs

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #535
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James
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Favourite horror films of this year have been The Love Witch, Get Out, Prevenge and Split. I have heard good things about Raw and expect to see it soon.

'I believe in what the Germans term Ehrfurcht: reverence for things one cannot understand.'
― Robert Aickman, An Essay
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #536
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Re: Movie Recommendations

There it is, I wrote a poem about Song to Song:

Terrence Mallick, at seventy-three,
won't change for Me.
Microwaved hodgepodge or cold dish,
I prefer over raw fish.
Bland and messy, rather self-mocking,
sun-glasses indoors and heavy smoking.

Robotic ensemble-cast,
plot is a thing of the past.

Faux-lyrical, half-finished,
soap-opera or romance for hipsters?

Cups or Trees,
New World cinema;
...It's all fine, but he just crossed
my Thin Red Line.


(find me on letterbox)

also, documentary about Possession by AZ:

I knew that someday I was gonna die / And I knew before I died Two things would happen to me / That number one I would regret my entire life / And number two I would want to live my life over again.
Hubert Selby Jr.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #537
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Black Magic 2 - this is one of the two or three Hong Kong films listed in the Marriott and Newman horror guide I had that was my main reference for a few years. It's odd that they chosen this when it doesn't improve on the original (which they didn't choose) and there's a lot of better films they could have included to represent Hong Kong. I was encouraged by the misleadingly beautiful cover art but the only thing I care to report is how odd it is to see Lo Lieh sucking on a lactating woman. It's just not a very interesting film in the HK black magic genre.

Bat Without Wings - this is quite similar to Human Lanterns in many ways but focused on swordplay. The villain has make-up and hair obviously copied from Gene Simmons and a crazy friend chained in his lair.
I found myself pausing a lot to admire the set design. I really like it when Shaw Brothers do the historical gothic setting but it looks good as often as it does frustratingly cheap. So near yet so far.

Battle Wizard - features magic frogs and snakes, a fire breathing wizard with extending steel bird legs, a brute with sharp teeth and a chain extending crab claw on one arm, and the hero getting his super powers from drinking the blood of a giant snake (like in Brave Archer) so the evil wizard wants to feed the hero to his gorilla (a man in a lousy costume) so it can claim the powers.
This film runs on lots of old fairy tale logic and fails to make it work but it's short and amusing.

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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #538
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Butterfly Murders - The first Tsui Hark directed film and it feels really different than his later films to me, maybe a bit darker and less crowd pleasing? I spent a long time assuming this was just a supernatural murder mystery but the martial arts gets going eventually and the later confrontations are more engaging. Not only is there wire-fu but some of the characters use wire devices extensively. Two of the heroes have great hair.

The Victim - Sammo Hung directing and co-starring with Bryan "Beardy" Leung. Quite similar to Knockabout but with a much more flawed maneuvering of the serious parts. Still a lot of fun and I increasingly appreciate Sammo directed fights after seeing more martial arts films.

The Pirate - Ti Lung as a sort of Robin Hood pirate. There is a battle between two ships at the start but most of the action is on land. It's fine.

The Shadow Whip - A young woman (Pei-Pei Cheng) and her uncle wield their whips brutally against large crowds of attackers. Some fight scenes are jerkily sped up and that doesn't work at all and the villain reveals himself in a really dumb way but it's pretty good overall. Pleasant snowy setting.

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Old 1 Week Ago   #539
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Antibirth - colourful stoner comedy with really gross horror bits. Feels so much like a Gregg Araki film. Nice to see Meg Tilly again.

Jamaica Inn - good. I was only recently aware Hitchcock did this and Rebecca.

Full Moon Scimitar - business as usual wuxia, okay.

Dressed To Kill - very good. Never thought I'd be interested in this but I enjoyed The Fury and Body Double so much I had to give it a shot.

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