Sci-Fi

Charles Lamont – Abbott and Costello Go to Mars (1953)

They don`t really go to Mars, they go to Venus, but first they go to New Orleans. While working at a missile base, Bud Abbott and Lou Costello inadvertently launch a rocket ship with themselves aboard. After a wild ride around New York City (the Statue of Liberty ducks when the rocket heads her way), Bud and Lou land in the outskirts of New Orleans. The boys are convinced that they`ve reached Mars, and their faith in this supposition is affirmed when they come across several strangely costumed `creatures` (actually revellers at the Mardi Gras). Meanwhile, bank robbers Jack Kruschen and Horace McMahon stow away on A&C`s rocketship. When Bud and Lou return, the crooks force them to make a quick getaway into outer space. Read More »

John Carpenter – The Thing [+Extras] (1982)

Synopsis
Based on both the short story by John W. Campbell, Jr. and the 1951 film produced by Howard Hawks, THE THING is John Carpenter’s stunning masterpiece of horror. A group of weary scientists enduring the winter in an isolated camp deep in Antarctica chance upon an alien spacecraft buried in the ice. Near the strange craft is the body of an alien being, frozen solid. Thinking they have made the find of a lifetime, the scientists bring the alien body back to camp and thaw it out. The alien awakens, not in the best of moods, and proceeds to take over the identities of the scientists, one by one, body and all. Helicopter pilot MacCready (Kurt Russell) must lead the surviving men in discovering who among them is human and who is not and how they can destroy “the thing” before it takes them all and moves on to the heavily populated mainland and the rest of humanity. Read More »

Timo Vuorensola – Iron Sky (2012)

Plot / Synopsis
In the last moments of World War II, a secret Nazi space program evaded destruction by fleeing to the Dark Side of the Moon. During 70 years of utter secrecy, the Nazis construct a gigantic space fortress with a massive armada of flying saucers. When American astronaut James Washington (Christopher Kirby) puts down his Lunar Lander a bit too close to the secret Nazi base, the Moon Führer (Udo Kier) decides the glorious moment of retaking the Earth has arrived sooner than expected. Two Nazi officers, ruthless Klaus Adler (Götz Otto) and idealistic Renate Richter (Julia Dietze), travel to Earth to prepare the invasion. In the end when the Moon Nazi UFO armada darkens the skies, ready to strike at the unprepared Earth, every man, woman and nation alike, must re-evaluate their priorities. — (C) Official Site Read More »

Thomas Gomez Durham – 95ers: Echoes (2012)

Special Agent Sally Biggs has a secret. She can rewind time–a few seconds–whenever she wants. It’s enough to make her a celebrity at the FBI and control almost everything in her life. But deep down, she’s afraid of the pain that comes from the things no one can control. Her worst fears are realized when her scientist husband disappears mysteriously. Paranormal apparitions begin to surround her. Strangers with terrifying technologies know her secret, and want her dead. Her only clue is her husband’s ghost–who she follows onto a battlefield she never knew existed. She must discover the awesome truth that ties all the mysteries together, before the fabric of her being–and the ones she loves most–fade out of reality. Written by Space Ace Read More »

David Cronenberg – Rabid [+Commentary] (1977)

Freud and Camus and the great Canuck fuck, a David Cronenberg bash. It begins with an abstruse dash of Dreyer (They Caught the Ferry) and briskly gets down to business, a biker chick (Marilyn Chambers) mangled in a road crash and pieced back together via “very experimental” skin-graft surgery. She awakens from her coma bewildered and bloodthirsty, under her armpit now lurks a quivering little Venus flytrap equipped with a peekaboo stinger; helplessly lunging at victims, she embraces, penetrates, and contaminates. The road to Montreal is littered with oozing cannibals snapping at each other, martial law is declared and machine-guns are brought out. On TV, the voice of Science weighs in: “So, uh… don’t let anybody bite you.” The venereal upheaval that bubbled up within the high-rise community in Shivers logically spills out into a foamy Quebec apocalypse, a wintry landscape smacked with tremor upon omnisexual tremor. Read More »

David Cronenberg – Videodrome (1983)

“Television is reality and reality is less than television.” Brian O’Blivion (Jack Creley) in Videodrome.

Max Renn (James Woods) runs a sleazy Toronto cable station that airs softcore porn and bizarre, violent entertainment. When a station techie begins receiving pirated signals of a disturbing sadomasochistic program called “Videodrome,” Renn decides that it would make the perfect addition to his line up. While appearing as a guest on a cable talk show, Renn meets relationship expert Nicki Brand (Deborah Harry). The two of them are immediately drawn to each other, both sharing a penchant for rough sex and, naturally, Betamax dupes of “Videodrome.” When it’s discovered that the pirated signal originates from somewhere in Pittsburgh, television producer Masha (Lynn Gorman) attempts to help Renn secure the rights for his station. She discovers that local television guru Brian O’Blivion (Jack Creley) is behind the violent show and that the behind-the-scenes machinations are of a deeply sinister and complex nature. Against Masha’s advice, Renn seeks out the elusive O’Blivion just as his obsession with the show begins to affect his own reality. Bizarre hallucinations melding his body and the video image begin to plague him. As a vast (yet increasingly personal) conspiracy behind “Videodrome” is slowly revealed, Renn begins a profoundly disturbing transformation into “the new flesh.”

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Sidney J. Furie – The Entity (1982) (DVD)


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This big budget entry from the early ’80s horror boom is one of the most underrated of that genre. The Entity succeeds despite potentially exploitative subject matter because it tells its story in a serious, respectful style. Frank de Felitta’s script devotes as much time to building three-dimensional characters and detailing the inner workings of psychology and parapsychology as it does creating shocks. As a result, the horrific parts of the tale are more effective because they are couched in a compelling reality. That said, The Entity never feels like anything less than a horror movie, thanks to forceful direction by Sidney J. Furie, who uses moody cinematography from Stephen Burum and an obsessive, minimalist score by Charles Bernstein to create an edgy, off-kilter atmosphere guaranteed to keep the audience tense between the set pieces. Read More »