Remake Rights

Films Around The World both owns remake rights, and represents as agent remake rights held by its principals, Alexander W. Kogan, Jr. an Barry Tucker.  One group of remake rights covers the 178 titles in the initial “B” package which was purchased by them; the original purchase did not include either foreign or remake rights.  The domestic rights were eventually transferred to what is now FATW; the foreign and remake rights were personally purchased by Messrs. Kogan and Tucker in 2010.  Other remake rights stem from features which FATW produced or purchased.

The 178-tite library includes both dramas and Westers; the dramas thought most interesting for remake are listed as “Group I” and are described in detail in the “Classic Drama Features” section of this we site.  The produced, purchased or otherwise represented  movies available for remake are listed as “Group II” below, and are described in detail following the list of titles.

We are proud to have licensed for remake in recent years, OUR TOWN, THE BRIDGE OF SAN LUIS REY, and THE CRAZIES. 

GROUP I TITLES

APOLOGY FOR MURDER  (1945)
ARSON SQUAD  (1945)
BEHIND LOCKED DOORS  (1948)
THE BIG FIX (1946)
BLONDE FOR A DAY  (1946)
BURY ME DEAD (a/k/a DEATH BY PROXY) (1947)
CLUB HAVANA  (1946)
COBRA STRIKES, THE (a/k/a CRIME WITHOUT CLUES) (1948)
COMMAND PERFORMANCE, THE  (1931)
CRIME, INC.  (a/k/a CRIME INCORPORATED) (1945)
DANGEROUS INTRUDER  (1945)
DARK WATERS  (1944)
DEADLOCK  (1943)
DETOUR  (1945)
DEVIL BAT’S DAUGHTER  (1946)
DEVIL ON WHEELS, THE  (1947)
DEVIL’S MESSENGER, THE  (1961)
ENCHANTED FOREST, THE  (1945)
FLYING SERPENT, THE (a/k/a KILLER WITH WINGS)  (1946)
FOG ISLAND  (1945)
FRENCH KEY, THE  (1946)
GLASS ALIBI  (1946)
GREAT FLAMARION,   THE (1945)
HEARTACHES  (1947)
HER SISTER’S SECRET  (1946)
HIS LORDSHIP REGRETS  (1938)
HOLLYWOOD AND VINE (a/k/a HAPPINESS EVER AFTER)  (1945)
HORROR HOTEL (a/k/a THE CITY OF THE DEAD)  (1962)
I ACCUSE MY PARENTS  (1945)
IDENTITY UNKNOWN  (1945)
IN THIS CORNER  (1948)
I RING DOORBELLS  (1945)
THE KID SISTER (a/k/a ALL IN THE FAMILY) (1945)
KILLER AT LARGE (a/k/a GANGWAY FOR MURDER, a/k/a SYNDICATED MURDER)  (1947)
LADY CHASER  (1945)
LADY CONFESSES, THE  (1945)
LARCENY IN HER HEART  (1946)
LIGHTHOUSE  (1946)
LOVE FROM A STRANGER  (1947)
MAN WHO WALKED ALONE, THE  (1945)
MASK OF DIIJON, THE  (1946)
MISSING CORPSE, THE  (1945)
MR. ACE  (1946)
MURDER IS MY BUSINESS (a/k/a OCCUPATION MURDER) (1946)
NIGHT CALLER FROM OUTER SPACE (a/k/a BLOOD BEAST FROM OUTER SPACE) (1966)
OUT OF THE BLUE  (1947)
PASSPORT TO HEAVEN (a/k/a I WAS A CRIMINAL, a/k/a CAPTAIN OF KOEPENICK)  (1945)
PHANTOM OF 42ND STREET, THE  (1945)
PHILO VANCE RETURNS  (1947)
PHILO VANCE’S GAMBLE  (1947)
PHILO VANCE’S SECRET MISSION  (1947)
PLOTTERS, THE (a/k/a THE PRIMITIVES)  (1966)
PRETENDER, THE (1947)
QUEEN OF BURLESQUE  (1946)
RAILROADED!  (a/k/a UNCERTAIN GUILT)  (1947)
RED STALLION, THE  (1947)
RED STALLION IN THE ROCKIES  (1949)
ROGUE’S GALLERY  (1944)
SEARCH FOR DANGER  (1949)
SECRETS OF A SORORITY GIRL  (1946)
SHADOW OF TERROR  (1945)
SPIRIT OF WEST POINT, THE  (1947)
STEPCHILD  (1947)
STRANGE ILLUSION (a/k/a OUT OF THE NIGHT) (1945)
STRANGE IMPERSONATION  (1946)
STRANGLER OF THE SWAMP (a/k/a STRANGLER FROM THE SWAMP)  (1946)
THAT’S MY BABY (a/k/a THAT’S MY BABY – EIN MANN SIEHT ROSA) (1944)
THREE ON A TICKET  (1947)
TOO MANY WINNERS  (1947)
TOWN WENT WILD, THE  (1944)
TROCADERO  (1944)
TWO LOST WORLDS  (1950)
UNKNOWN ISLAND  (1948)
WAVE, A WAC, AND A MARINE, A  (1944)
WHITE PONGO  (1945)
WHY GIRLS LEAVE HOME  (1945)
WIFE OF MONTE CRISTO, THE  (1946)
WINTER WONDERLAND  (1947)
WOMAN WHO CAME BACK, THE  (1945)

GROUP II TITLES

DAUGHTERS OF DRACULA (a/k/a VAMPYRES, a/k/a BLOOD HUNGER, a/k/a SATAN’S            DAUGHTERS, a/k/a VAMPYRES, DAUGHTERS OF DRACULA, a/k/a VAMPYRES,             DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS)
SEASON OF THE WITCH (a/k/a HUNGRY WIVES, a/k/a JACK’S WIFE)
BLOODTHIRSTY BUTCHERS
THE BRONX WAR
THE CHILL FACTOR
CLASS OF ‘74 (a/k/a THE GIRLS MOST LIKELY TO) (1972)
DEADLY MANOR
DON’T JUST LAY THERE (1970)
DOOM ASYLUM
GRAVEROBBERS  (a/k/a DEAD MATE)
THE INHERITOR
THE KILL OFF
THE MAN WITH TWO HEADS (a/k/a THE MAN WITH TWO FACES, a/k/a DR. JEKYLL              AND MR. BLOOD)
MONSTROSITY
OUR TOWN
THE RATS ARE COMING!  THE WEREWOLVES ARE HERE! (a/k/a THE CURSE OF THE          FULL MOON)
STREET STORY  (a/k/a STREET HITZ)
TORTURE DUNGEON (a/k/a DUNGEON OF DEATH)
TRAPPED (a/k/a FOREVER MINE, a/k/a TRAPPED ALIVE)

GROUP II — DETAILED DESCRIPTIONS

DAUGHTERS OF DRACULA (a/k/a VAMPYRES, a/k/a BLOOD HUNGER, a/k/a SATAN’S DAUGHTERS, a/k/a VAMPYRES, DAUGHTERS OF DRACULA, a/k/a VAMPYRES, DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS)

1975; color; 82 mins., *** Corel All Movie Guide USA: X; Austrailia: R, Portugal: M/18, UK: 18

Director:             Jose Ramon Larraz (as Joseph Larraz)
Writers:              D. Daugeney, Jose Ramon Larraz, Thomas Owen
Producer:           Brian Smedley Aston
Music:                 James Clark
Cinamatog.:      Harry Waxman
Editor:                Geoff R. Brown
Prod.Design:     Kin Bridgeman
Screenplay:        D. Daubney
Cast:                Michael Byrne, Bessie Love,  Elliott Sullivan, Marianne Morris, Anulka, Murray
Brown, Brian Deacon, Sally Faulkner, Karl Lanchbury, Margaret Heald, Gerald
Case

CULT/HORROR: “Anulka and Marianne Morris are fangless but beautiful bisexual vampires who lure men to their castle for sex-and-blood orgies.  One man happily stays for the nightly romps until he finally dies from lack of blood.  The only female victim is an artist living in a trailer on the grounds of the castle with her husband.  Anulka was the May ’73 Playboy foldout.  With lots of nudity and gore.  The ultimate erotic vampire movie.”

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Disjointed narrative traces the frolicking of two nubile female vampires, seemingly inspired by Stevie Nicks in her younger days.  They waft along English country roads near their castle, lure passersby back to their mansion with promises of sex, and then bit them and lap up their blood.  Yes, true believers, this could happen to you.

“Probably better than ay of the slipshod Jess Franco/Jean Rollin pictures, this one is based on the viewer’s desire to see its lead vampire fixens in the nude and rolling around with each other, as well as third parties who don’t stay warm for very long.  Other than this, there is very little plot at all, save for an unfortunate American couple who happen to be camping on the grounds of the vampyre’s estate.  Soon enough they are targeted by the vamps, and.. Well, SOMETHING happens, and that’s the end.  Told you there wasn’t much plot.

“Some startling violence and an overall feel of the old Hammer Films productions makes this interesting viewing for those who aren’t easily offended by sex and violence.  Otherwise, you’;d better be into lots of lesbian softcore porn, or you’ll be bored stiff.”

NOTE: FATW owns the U.S. distribution rights in perpetuity; foreign distribution rights are held by the producer, Brian Smedley-Aston.  He has authorized FATW to offer the title for remake; FATW would buy out all of Smedley-Aston’s rights in the movie and license it for remake for all territories etc.    It should also be noted that Smedley-Aston and Jose Larraz, the original director, have developed a remake screenplay that can be purchased; Larraz would like to direct if possible.  Larraz (a/k/a Joseph Braunstein,| Joseph L. Bronstein,  José L. Gil,  J.R.Larrath, J.R. Larrath,  Joseph Larraz,  Jose Larraz,  José R. Larraz, José Larraz, and Joseph Larrza) is an experienced director who specializes in erotic horror films, including BLACK CANDLES, represented as abgent by FATW.

SEASON OF THE WITCH (a/k/a HUNGRY WIVES, a/k/a JACK’S WIFE)

1971; color; 89 mins. 38 secs.
Technical:    16mm, Spherical Cinematographic process; Aspect Ratio: 1.37:1

Director:                George A. Romero
Exec.Prod.:            Alvin Croft
Producer:               Nancy M. Romero
Co-Producer:         Gary Streiner
Writer:                    George A. Romero
Film Editing:         George A. Romero
Orig. Music:          Steve Gorn
Cinematog.:           George A. Romero
Makeup:                Bonnie Priore
Prod.Sup.:             Vincent D. Survinski
Sound:                    Rex Gleason, Gerald Schutz
Spec.Effects:          Regis Survinski
Cast:                       Jan White, Ray Laine, Anne Muffly, Joedda McClain, Bill Thunhurst, Neil
Fisher, Esther Lapidus, Dan Mallinger, Daryl Montgomery, Ken Peters, Shirlee
Strasser, Robert Trow, Jean Wechsler, Charlotte Carter, Linda Creagan, S.
William Hinzman, Marvin Lieber, Paul McCollough, Sue Michaels, Hal Priore,
Louis Yochum, Virginia Greenwald

WITCHCRAFT/DRAMA: A married woman discovers witchcraft through an extramarital affair and becomes initiated in Satan’s coven. Dreams and real life nightmare merge ending in a murder.

SYNOPSIS:    “To her husband, Jack, her daughter, Nikki, and her many friends, Joan Mitchell (Jan White) is a confident, sophisticated wife of a successful man. When Joan and her friends hear of a woman in their community, Marion Hamilton (Virginia Greenwald), who is practicing witch craft, they are fascinated to have such an “in thing” right in their own backyards. Prompted by curiosity, Joan and her friend, Shirley, Visit Marion’s home and observe her ability to deal positively with her life throught her absolute faith in what she practices. Intrigued by this experience and frustrated with her current situation, Joan seeks solace in witchcraft and begins to feel the power of black magic. Before long, Joan begins having recurring nightmares that become more and more ominous and slowly change her life forever.” http://georgeromero.cjb/net/

Internet Movie Database Summary

“Joan Mitchell is an unhappy, suburban housewife pushing 40, who has an uncommunicative businessman husband, named Jack, and a distant 19-year-old daughter, named Nikki, on the verge of moving out of the house. Frustrated at her current situation, Joan seeks solance in witchcraft after visiting Marion Hamilton, a local tarot reader and leader of a secret black arts wicca set, who inspires Joan to follow her own path. After dabbling a little in witchcraft, Joan, believing herself to have become a real witch, withdraws into a fantasy world and sinks deeper and deeper into her new lifestyle until the line between fantasy and reality becomes blurred and eventually tragedy results.”

Internet Movie Database Reviews

“Definitely a different film. This kept me very interested. I recently purchased “Season of the Witch” on DVD, the picture is a bit muddy, but I can look past that. The movie begins with Jan White and her husband walking through the woods, it’s a bit Tripp. In general, this film isn’t too scary. However, the nightmare scenes are a bit frightening, the crazy music overall. I was disappointed with one part however, Jan White’s daughter, Joedda McCain ends up disappearing. Later on in the movie, the never do actually find out where she is. Overall, this should probably be categorized as a psychological film, none the less, an excellent piece of work.”

“Ranks right up there with “The Witch Who Came From the Sea” and “The Stepford Wives” in the obsolete sub-genre of 70’s women’s lib horror. Arguably George Romero’s most unusual and underrated film, this is less a horror film than a sociopolitical bitchslapping of the male-dominated American dream. Although witchcraft does play a part in this, the focus is largely on our leading lady’s middle-aged, menopausal anguish…a feeling of solitary confinement in a pseudo-sterile life with an abusive/absent husband, thankless daughter, and a circle of ingenuine, gossipy “friends”. This is a very well done low-budget film, and comes highly recommended…although rigid horror buffs may end up disappointed.”

“Despite the fact that this film is by George Romero and it’s sold as a horror film, _Season of the Witch_ (aka _Jack’s Wife_ which is, in my opinion, the better title) isn’t really a horror film. Or, at the very least, it isn’t a *straightforward* horror film and anyone going into this expecting Romero’s typical gore and suspense will definitely be disappointed. The closest the film comes to typical horror are some wonderfully eerie sequences involving a man in a grotesque satanic-looking rubber mask (exploitatively depicted on some of the older videocassette sleeve covers for the film) trying to break into the main character’s house. What this film amounts to is the story of one woman who finds herself dissatisfied with the daily plod of her existence as a respectable wife in a respectable suburb. She feels herself aging. She’s secretly bitter toward her husband and her friends. It’s never really clear what she wants exactly because she doesn’t seem to know herself, but she does become intrigued by a woman in the neighborhood who claims to a witch. She meets with this woman and, though she’s afraid of black magic, she’s inspired to explore it on her own. She goes out and buys a book on the subject and some witchcraft paraphernalia and then begins casting spells from her kitchen. Despite the non-gory subject matter, there are some things in this film that bear the distinctive signature of Romero and his influences. There’s a keen visual wit on display, particularly in some scenes involving mirrors. There are some odd hallucinatory dream sequences here that come straight from the more supernatural side of Italian horror (particularly the opening scene). Many of the scenes are ramshackle and crudely staged, but not in an altogether bad way. Rather, they almost recall a documentary. There’s genuine tension (but not “horror film” tension). You don’t know where scenes are going to go or what the characters are going to do or say next. You never really get inside many of the characters, but they’re offbeat and watchable (particularly the young student-teacher, who’s into drugs, casual sex, and some pretentious post-late 60’s philosophy). Not everything in this film works. It’s badly edited. Much of the acting is weak. However, the film does have an intriguing, almost New Wave, experimental-like cadence. It’s rough and full of jagged edges, but, in that respect, it’s really no worse than Jean Luc-Godard at his most indulgent. Even more so than _Martin_, this is Romero’s “art film”. If it were a piece of music instead of a movie it would be slow, discordant and lo-fi. This is recommended for all Romero admirers to see at least once.”

“ Good Gravy! This is an odd movie. It’s kind of like the bored-housewives-turn-on schlock released by Something Weird Video, except it’s done as a “serious” movie. Plus, it’s advertised as a horror movie because it was directed by George A. Romero, he of “Dawn of the Dead” fame. I watched the Anchor Bay special edition of this flick- the name on the video box is “Season of the Witch”, the actual movie has the title “Jack’s Wife”, and in the theatrical trailer included on the tape the movie is called “Hungry Wives”. But ignoring all that, I enjoyed most of this movie. The actors are all good, and the movie is packed with great dream sequences. The proof that this movie is above average is that it can use the tired “waking up from one dream only to find that you’re still dreaming” device skillfully. The plot concerns a bored housewife whose husband (“Jack”, I guess) occasionally smacks her around, telling her she needs to “kick some ass” (he says that a lot). She’s got a super-cute red head daughter who introduces her to a trippy stoner who turns her on to a swingin’ life style. This movie’s strongest scenes are the ones concerning Jack’s Wife’s growing hatred of her dull life and friends. Although Jack’s Wife and her booze-guzzling friends go to see a woman who practices witchcraft, but that’s not really a big part of the movie. The “Season of the Witch” title comes from the inclusion of a song, performed by Donovan, with that title. This song, played loudly over a throw-away scene, sounds as if it was recorded by one group sans Donovan, and then they played it over the radio and recorded Donovan singing out of rhythm with it. It’s very, very bizarre. But anyway, this was an obscure little gem that I really liked, and it gets bonus points for including a scene with Mad Libs.”

NOTE: George would like to write a remake script and to direct.  He and FATW jointly licenswed THE CRAZIES to Overture for the 2010 remake; both were represented by David Gersh.  David is aware of this submission.

BLOODTHIRSTY BUTCHERS

Color, 80 Minutes, 1970, MPAA “R”

Director:              Andy Milligan
Producer:            William Mishkin for Constitution Films, Inc.
Settings:              Jim Fox
Costumes:           Raffine
Editor:                 Gerald Jackson
Photography:    Andy Milligan
Screenplay:        John Borske and Andy Milligan [based on the British folk story Sweeny Todd,
The Demon Barber of Fleet Street] Technical:            Susan Heard
Spec. Eff.s:           Marcia Neilson
Art Director:       Elaine
Decorations:        Sonia Kaye
Cast:                      John Miranda, Anabella Wood, Berwick Kaler, Jane Hilary, Michael Cox, Linda
Driver, William Barrell, Jonathan Holt, Susan Cassidy,  David Pike, Frank
Echols,  Ann Arrow, Shirley Ashdown, Dickson Bain, George
Barry

HORROR:  “An unusual alliance between SWEENY TODD, the local barber, and MAGGIE LOVETT, who runs an innocuous appearing bake shop, has wreaked havoc in London… and has also resulted in some of the most unusual ‘meat pies’ available anywhere in town.  Several people have never been seen after they enter SWEENY’s barber shop, and it becomes evident why, when MATT McKEON is literally butchered for a ring desired by SWEENY.  MAGGIE’s curious assistant, TOBIAS REGG, the ‘head’ butcher, has a propensity for blood  curdling murders, and in brisk succession does away MAGGIE’s invalid husband, SWEENY’s wife, his own girlfriend, and others who eventually find their way back to the bakeshop.  The butcher’s prime cuts are curious indeed, as we learn when some of MAGGIE’s customers come to the shop for their pies, demanding ‘the part they like best.’  MAGGIE’s salesgirl, innocent JOANNA, is having a torrid love affair with JARVIS WILLIAMS, and it is the strength of this relationship that proves to be the downfall of the butchers.  The eye-witness discovery of some of the brutal crimes at the same time as JARVIS’ mysterious disappearance alerts the community as to the responsibility for the carnage and cannibalism.  Just before JOANNA and the police arrive to save JARVIS, TOBIAS and SWEENY murder each other in a demonstration of the most imaginative butchery, inconceivable by anyone other than the BLOODTHIRSTY BUTCHERS.”  By cult director ANDY MILLIGAN.

Internet Movie Database Summary:

“Sweeney Todd, a barber, and Maggie Lovett, a baker, join forces to commit a series of brutal, gory murders in London with a little help from Tobias Ragg, an employee of Maggie’ bakery who abducts a number of customers from the barber shop and kills them and helps the couple make “meat pies” out of the dead victims for sale.”

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Summary: Breast pie, anyone?

“Sweeney Todd according to Andy Milligan. This is a frighteningly bad film! My tolerance for bad movies is exceptionally high, but this film was really ‘bally pushing it. It’s immensely boring, badly acted, has dumb gore scenes (some of which are snipped by the distributors), atrocious dialogue, terrible photography etc. etc. I could go on.

“Unlike Milligan’s masterpiece (LOL!) “Blood Rites” this one isn’t even enjoyable on a so-bad-its-good scale. As mentioned in the review above, to its credit the film does offer up a breast in a pie.”

THE BRONX WAR

1989; color; 90 mins.
Director:                    Joseph B. Vasquez
Producer:                   Elizabeth Frankel
Exec. Prod.                 Alexander W. Kogan, Jr.  Barry Tucker
Screenplay:               Joseph B. Vasquez
Photography:           Gordon Minard
Music:                         Tasso Zapanti
Editor:                         Michael Schweitzer
Cast:                            Joseph, Fabio Urena, Charmaine Cruz, Andre Brown, Marlene Forte,
Francis  Colon, Miguel Sierra, Kim West, J.E. Gonzalez, Ivonne Fidias

ACTION/DRAMA  Written, directed and starring Joseph B. Vasquez (Street Story, Hangin’ With The Homeboys), and filmed entirely in New York City’s notorious South Bronx, the film centers on Tito Sunshine (Vasquez), who directs his drug-dealing gang from his bar, assisted by his brother Tony (Favio Urena) and the aptly-named and ambitious Crazy (Miguel Sierra). When Tito’s sister-in-law Rachel (Charmaine Cruz) moves in with Tito and his wife Maria (Frances Colon), the stage is set for a confrontation between Tito and Caesar (Andre Brown), leader of a much larger Black drug gang, based in Brooklyn, who demands that Tito surrender Rachel and the $40,000 in heroin which she claims was stolen by her former boyfriend.  Tito believes Rachel’s story that she was innocent, and protects her by duping his own gang into believing that Caesar is moving into their territory.  Matters quickly escalate into a full-scale war between the two gangs, fought over the dismal South Bronx landscape.  It is only when the killing is over that Tito learns that he has been duped by Rachel, the actual heroin thief.  The breathless action, heightened by a hard-driving Latin/Black original music score, is punctuated by two love stories — Tito and Maria, who wants him to retire from the drug business, and Tony and Alicia (Marlene Forte), a hard-bitten stripper in Tito’s club who detests drugs and those who deal in them.  The Bronx War is an American original, gritty and authentic, with breathless action and dramatic interest from beginning to end, that explores the drug “business” from a viewpoint rarely considered in film — the “businessmen” and their families.

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Summary: The worst and funniest film ever made.

“When I first picked up the cover of this film in the video shop it looked like a classic potboiler. After watching it with my brother my suspicions were verified. It had to be the worst film ever made, as though some bored college students had gotten together one summer break and filmed the whole thing in a day or two. My brother was shocked to see how many people had worked on this piece of garbage when viewing the closing scroll. A lot off these bombs are just plain stupid and boring, although for some reason or other (like “Robot Monster”) there is always an exception to the rule. This one is really funny because of the “brilliant” acting. Those shower caps are also a great touch. A must see.”

THE CHILL FACTOR

1989; color; 90 mins.

Director:                Christopher Webster
Producer:              Christopher Webster
Screenplay:           Julian Weaver
Photography:       Joseph Friedman
Music:                     John Tatgenhorst
Cast:                       Dawn Laurrie, Aaron Kjenass, David Fields, Eve Montgomery, Connie Snyder,
Jim Cagle

HORROR/ADVENTURE:  Three college-student couples take a snow-mobiling break from class in a remote Northwoods location.  After stopping in a local bar, the boys set up a snowmobile drag race across a frozen lake.  The race ends abruptly in a crash, severely injuring TOM.  RON, searching for shelter from the snowy night, finds a boarded-up childrens’ camp once-run by an unidentifiable religious order.  Breaking in, they build a fire; RON snowmobiles cross country to find help.  As the long night wears on, an innocent game with an ancient ouija board activates the satanic spirit of the camp, dressed in a priest’s hassock.  One by one, the “campers” succumb to its fiendishly original mayhem — poor CHRIS’s neck is ripped apart by a giant icicle! The girls fare no better.  In fact, the only member of the party that seems to thrive is TOM, mysteriously cured as the spirit invades his body.  RON, roaring through the night on his snowmobile, is decapitated by a barbed-wire fence.  The beautiful JEANNY follows, pursued by TOM, now possessed by the evil spirit.  The crushing tracks of a snowcat finally stop TOM. JEANNY, the apparent sole survivor, is puzzled by the sheriff’s comment that the camp that “sheltered” them had actually burned down years ago.  Moments later, JEANNY is also gone — the last victim.

CLASS OF ‘74 (a/k/a THE GIRLS MOST LIKELY TO) (1972)

82 Mins.; Color, Rated R

Directors:               Arthur Marks, Jean Yarbrough, Mack Bing
Writer:                    Jack Mattis
Producer:               Crest Films
Cast:                        Barbara Caron, Marki Bey, Sondra Currie, Pat Woodell, Phillip Terry, Lynn
Cartwright, Chris Beaumong, Luanne Roberts, Hal Hidey, Ronald Lawrence,
Bob Kresting, Lisa Caron, Gary Clarke, Jack Mattis

Distributor memos:  “Four girls find way to sexploit men to pay for their education.”

“‘74 is one class that has extracurricular activities that are definitely not accredited.  The students search for sexuality is a course in itself & all the girls graduate with top honors.”

“What do High School girls do?  Everything.  That is, if they feel like it and if it pays off one way or another. Get an apartment, get a car, get the good life – but first get some guy to pay for it all!  Maggie (SANDRA CURRIE), Carla (MARKI BEY), and Heather (PAT WOODELL) teach Gabriella (BARBARA CARON) all she needs to know to hook Dave (PHILIP TERRY).  And hook him she does, getting set up in a menage a trois aboard her very own “bigger than a battleship” yacht.  By her Sophomore year in College, Gabriella is teaching her own “freshman”.  Fun and games as only today’s “libbers” play.  COLOR RATED R.”

Tag lines from posters:

“TO THEM LIFE IS A BALL”
“THEY TAUGHT MORE THAN THEY LEARNED”
“TO THEM LIFE IS A BALL IS A BALL IS A BALL”

IMDb Review:    “It depresses me how I can remember something like this from my youth. At a multi-screen drive in, the movie my family and I were supposed to watch was rather dull (I can’t even remember the film’s title) so I just turned my head and look out the side window and saw the film Class of 74 w/out sound. The vision of a bikini clad black woman dancing to the credits as well as topless swimmers in the pool was quite a sight. Not to “mention, the scene were a macho athlete was getting molested by the team doctor stayed with me forever.

“After a few too many decades, I accidentally came across the film from an Internet trader and I had to see if my memory was still as sharp as always, or had it failed me. Well, my memory didn’t fail me; here was one of many films that captured my interest in the trashy low budget drive in films of the past.

“Well, seeing the film with sound didn’t do much for the film. The plot has a group of young college students led by Pat Woodell, Sondra (billed as Sandra) Currie and Marki Bey as the dancing black woman in the bikini taking into their clique, a young Gabriella- the film’s original title, and how she should be more free and sexually liberated to be a total woman. Uh- okay.

“The viewer is treated to a series of scenes guaranteed to get a howl as these students go from free love seminars, to a film making couple making a documentary of sexually liberated people (featuring the macho athlete now a swishing gay male), a threesome, and open relationships. The film makers must have realized this film didn’t a little more than an hour, so they padded the film with Gabriella reminiscing about her Lothario father cruising Sunset Blvd. which ironically is a scene that would have fit in the 1960s not the seventies this film was made. The climax so to speak consists of Pat Woodell (in a horrendously fake platinum wig) inviting Gabriella on a small yacht owned by her rich sugar daddy played by Gary Clarke of How to Make a Monster and Missile to the Moon infamy. How does Gabriella handle the situation? She becomes a mistress to another sugar daddy on the yacht with his wife’s approval.

“The ending is rather surprising as Gabrielle is taking a young college student under her wing and getting ready to tutor the young student on how she can make her life much better and be a free woman.

“Ah yes, the Seventies”

OneSheetIndex.com:
“”The Class of ’74” is the story of four young women who belong to today . . . or perhaps even to tomorrow. When we first meet them on the campus, it is instantly apparent that they are four young women to whom nature has been generous . . . four bodies that have been amply endowed, designed to turn men’s heads and cause their wives, girlfriends and/or mistresses concern. And interestingly, all four have looks to go with their bodies. Four distinctive, different faces, all of which epitomize young womanhood . . . in short, you don’t know where to look first.
“And then we hear them talking . . . We realize they are bright, witty, intelligent women who believe in doing their own thing, free spirits whose moral codes are where everyone else secretly wishes theirs were. Except Gabriella. Gabriella (Barbara Caron) is a bit unworldly, naive about life but willing to learn. She looks to her friends for advice and consultation. Then there is Maggie (Sandra Currie) who feels she is the equal of any man and has the looks, confidence and drive to do anything she wants. And Carla (Marki Bey), black and beautiful, who is having a love affair with life. Black or white, it makes no difference as long as you live for today. As she tells Gabriella, “I’m making love happen, and it’s the wildest kick I’ve ever had. The sooner you learn it’s all wrapped up in the sex game we play, the better off you’ll be.” Finally, there is Heather (Pat Woodell), blonde, built and bright, whose ambitions lean towards owning a Greek island or being the next Princess of Monaco. Watch and listen to her for a few minutes and you’ll know she’s going to get what she wants . . . and more. After discussing her naiveté, the three other girls decide that Gabriella needs the kind of education she will never get in college. They will take her under their wings, and almost in the style of a progressive dinner, teach her everything they know (and that’s plenty) about life. Gabriella is eager to cooperate. Maggie is the first to expose Gabriella to life. In a beautiful beach house at Malibu, the young woman learns that if her attitude is right and she understands the rules of the game, she can have anything she wants. Helping Maggie with the lessons in love is a handsome young photographer, Tony (Roger Ewing). Carla next takes charge of Gabriella’s instructions at a handsomely furnished Beverly Hills apartment. She introduces her to a young stud named Wally (Chris Beaumont) and to the philosophy of doing what you have to do and having something inside you called “free power.” Heather then undertakes the final phase of the reeducating of Gabriella by showing her life among the jet-setters, the over-thirty bunch. Aboard a big-as-a-battleship yacht, she meets Dave (Phillip Terry) who offers her a menage a trois arrangement with his wife’s (Lynn Cartwright) consent. John (Gary Clarke), owner of the boat, seeks only Gabriella’s consent. Her education completed, Gabriella returns to the campus far wiser and a more sophisticated woman. We last see her, mature and confident, discussing life with a new young freshman (Cynthia Hull). She agrees to take this unwise-in-the-world young woman under HER wing and teach her what life is all about. The Class of ’74 proved again that they taught more than they learned.”

“GENERAL FILM CORPORATION PRESENTS “The Class of ’74” CAST

HEATHER …………………….. Pat Woodell
CARLA …………………………. Marki Bey
MAGGIE ………………………. Sandra Currie
GABRIELLA …………………. Barbara Caron
DAVE …………………………… Phillip Terry
MARSHA ……………………… Lynn Cartwright
WALLY ………………………….Chris Beaumont
CAROL …………………….. …..Luanne RobertsSHELLY …………………………Hal Hidey
X4VIER ……………………….. .Ronald Lawrence
STEPHAN …………………….. Bob Kresting
LISA ……………………………. .Lisa Caron
JOHN …………………….. …….Gary Clarke

Executive Producer …………….. DON GOTTLIEB
Producer ……………………………. CHARLES STROUD
Directed by ………………………… ARTHUR MARKS, MACK BING
Director of Photography ………. ROBERT CHARLES WILSON
Film Editor ………………………… RICHARD GREER
Musical Director …………………. LOUIS YULE BROWN

THE MUSIC
“NOTHING IS EVERLASTING”
Written and Composed by ……………….. Charles May
Music – Louis Yule Brown
Lyrics – LII Mattis
Running Time 82 minutes
Eastman Color
A General Film Corp. Presentation

DEADLY MANOR

1989; color; 90 mins.

Director:                Jose Ramon Larraz
Producer:              Brian Smedley-Aston
Exec.Prod.:           Enrique Bellot, Alexander W. Kogan, Barry Tucker
Ass.Prod.:             Stan Bickman
Prod.Exec.:           Elizabeth Frankel
Photography:       Tote Trenas
Music:                     Cengiz Yaltkaya
Editor:                    Sandi Gerling
Cast:                       Jennifer Delora, William Russell, Clark Tufts, Jerry Kernion, Liz Hitchler,
Kathleen Patane, Claudia Franjul, Mark Irish, Greg Scott, Dennis Growland

HORROR:  This “Classic” horror story has the obligatory cast of attractive youngsters, on a camping trip in a remote wooded area, who, joined by a mysterious hitchhiker, shelter from a storm in an aging mansion.  Mystery piles upon mystery, until the deaths begin.  The outstanding cast includes several who may very well become stars of the future, together with a husband/wife killer team that is absolutely chilling.  Directed by long-time horror director (Daughters of Dracula, Black Candles) Jose Larraz, produced by award-winning editor/producer (Tom Jones, Rollerball, Daughters of Dracula, Holocaust, Memed My Hawk) Brian Smedley-Aston.

International Movie Database Review:

“Contains Spoiler  I took a chance on thisone and bought it anyways.  It turned out to be really quite good, despite the plot being old and predictable and some of the acting just a bit dodgy.

“There are some quite nice touches: the smashed up car as a memorial, naked pictures of Jennifer Delora all over the house (and worth seeing!), the hitch hiker who turns out to be a red herring.

“Also your stock ‘stupid teenagers’ who aren’t at all put off spendin the night in this ‘abandoned’ house (with no broken windows) by coffinds in the cellar, bottled scalp in the cupboard, yesterday’s paper in a chair and lights left burning.

“Neverhtheless quite an entertaining, cheap film and far better than many that cost much more to make.  Worth a look.”

DON’T JUST LAY THERE (1970)

87 Mins.; Color

Director:                 Phillip Pine
Writer:                    Phillip Pine, from a story by Kym Allison
Exec. Producer:     Jack Mattis
Distributor:           “ Fellatio Films Present Another Fellatio Film From Mattis-Pine Productions”
Music:                      Steve and Martin Margulies
Arranged and Cond.:    By Martin Marguilies
“Featuring The Humpers”
“Freeway song by Jack and Flo Mattis
“Vocals by Prickly Heat”
Editor:                    Clark Johnson
Cinematog.:           Clark Johnson and Ernie Be______ [on video copy; illegible] Sound Engineer
And Editor:          Clark Johnson
Cast:                        Barbara Caron, Ron Dyer, Kathy Hilton, Fern Holbrook, Diane Lewis, Jon
Matisse, Mary Jane Shippen, N. N. Weggener, Bridgett, Fern Hallbrook,

Synopsis:    “This erotic exploitation film finds a lesbian fashion photographer and her lover assigned to film nude models for an X rated Zodiac calendar.  Setting up shop in a remote cabin, the models are systematically stalked and killed by an unknown  murderer.  The fearful photographer and her lover must stop their erotic escapades long enough to stop becoming the next victims.” Internet Movie Database

DOOM ASYLUM

1987; color; 78 mins.

Director:            Richard Friedman
Producer:           Steve Menkin
Exec.Prod.:        Alexander W. Kogan, Jr. & Barry Tucker
Screenplay:       Rick Marx
Photography:    Larry Revene
Music:                 Jonathan Stewart & Dave Erlanger
Cast:                   Patty Mullen, Ruth Collins, Kristin Davis, William Hay, Kenny L. Price, Michael
Rogen, Harvey Keith, Dawn Alvan, Farin, Paul Giorgi, Steven G. Menkin,
Harrison White

COMEDY/HORROR: Directed by RICHARD FRIEDMAN (“Tales from the Darkside” and Paramount’s “Friday the 13th Television Series”) and starring PATTY MULLEN, the 1987 Penthouse Pet of the Year, this tongue-in-cheek horror film is set in a closed-down hospital complex. Famed palimony attorney Mitch Mitchelson and his beautiful lover/client are killed in an automobile crash. Mitch awakens from his coma after the coroner has half autopsied his head, kills him, and lives a haunted existence in the cellars under the hospital.  Years later the murdered woman’s daughter leads a group of her friends on a picnic on the hospital grounds – including Kristin Davis, co-star of “Sex and the City” in her movie debut –, and they and a punk rock group are systematically murdered in various gruesomely amusing ways until only Mitch and the daughter are left.

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Summary: Perhaps the greatest B movie ever created

“It is the holy grail of B movies! The acting is sad, but that only adds to the laughs! Effects? Well in the opening scene where a girl loses an arm, you can clearly see her arm “hidden” under some hay. Which only adds to the laughs! And such classic lines as “But, mom! That would be incest!”, “I voted for Reagan”, and “I hate rap music!!” You would just have to see the movie to really appreciate these lines! If you see it to rent/buy/steal whatever… PICK IT UP!”

GRAVEROBBERS  (a/k/a DEAD MATE)

1988; color; 90 mins.

Director:              Straw Weisman
Producer:             Lew Mishkin
Exec.Prod.:           Alexander W. Kogan, Jr. & Barry Tucker
Screenplay:         Straw Weisman
Editor:                  Michael Spence
Photography:     Anghel Deca
Spec.Eff.:             Arnold Gargulio
Music:                   Katherine Quittner
Cast:                      Elizabeth Mannino, David Gregory, Kelvin Keraga, Lawrence Bockius, Adam
Wahl

HORROR:  The nightmare begins with Nora’s vision of her beating heart being ripped from her body.  Awakening with a start in the diner where she is a waitress, she meets suave Henry Cox.  A lightning courtship leads to his marriage proposal and her acceptance; the couple is driven off in Cox’s limousine by his strange chauffeur, Morley.  Henry’s “home” turns out to be a funeral parlor, but the wedding takes place anyway, presided over by the local sheriff and Henry’s other evil-looking friends.  Nora’s increasing uneasiness proves justified after a harrowing chase through the cemetery, where she sees the empty grave of the GRAVEROBBERS’ latest victim, a nubile blonde cheerleader.  Nora’s explorations lead her to a secret room where Henry and his friends, including the town’s sheriff and librarian,  perform unspeakable experiments with the bodies that Henry has supposedly buried.  When Nora stumbles upon her own tombstone, she realizes that the GRAVEROBBERS have plans for her.  Desperately, Nora turns for help to the boyfriend of the dead cheerleader, only to learn that he too is a member of the bizarre cult.  Nora flees through the tunnels under the mortuary and races off in Henry’s hearse, only to be pursued relentlessly by Morley, parts of whose  decomposing body fly off in the wind.

Internet Movie Database Synopsis:

“Cute waitress/hooker is romanced and wed to handsome stranger/funeral director. He, as well as most of the town prefer their women dead. She is the obvious candidate for that position, as his two previous wives were in terrible shape even for dead persons. She must be fleet of foot indeed to avoid their fate.”

THE INHERITOR

1988; color; 83 mins.

Director:              Brian Savegar
Producr:               Christopher & Cheryl Webster
Writer:                  Julian Weaver
Photography:      Joseph Friedman
Cast:                      Dan Haggerty, Lisa McGuire, Barnaby Spring, John Rice, John A. Russo, Vinnie
Grillo

SUPERNATURAL MYSTERY/DRAMA:  Alison Williams’ world is shattered when Police Sergeant Mark Deacon arrives to drive her back to the rural town she grew up so that she can identify the body of her twin sister — a body found dead from unknown causes, naked, in the cottage she rented from her lover, darkly handsome author Simon Proctor.  The Coroner, Dr. Berquist (DAN “GRIZZLEY ADAMS” HAGGERTY) can only report that her heart stopped beating.  Alison accepts Proctor’s invitation to move into the cottage, which seems to have a will of its own:  Alison experiences nightmares and supernatural “happenings” that seem to move her relentlessly down to the cellar of the cottage.  Proctor helps her break through a wall into a series of ancient underground caves, where the nightmares of the past blend with the even stranger present.  A series of shocking events leaves Alison as the sole survivor –pregnant with what will be the offspring of a man/beast already generations old.  This unusual film has been magnificently directed and designed by Academy Award Winner (for set direction, “A Room With A View”) BRIAN SAVEGAR.

THE KILL OFF

1989; color; 92 mins.

Director:                Maggie Greenwald
Producer:              Lydia Dean Pilcher
Photography:       Declan Quinn
Cast:                       Loretta Gross, Steve Monroe, Jackson Sims, Cathy Haase, Andrew Lee Barrett,
Jorjan Fox, and William Russell.

DRAMA:      Based on the Jim Thompson novel (whose other novels made into movies include THE GRIFTERS, THE GETAWAY, POP.1280, THE KILLER INSIDE ME, and A HELL OF A WOMAN, and who wrote screenplays for Stanley Kubrick’s  THE KILLING, and PATHS OF GLORY), this is a mystery with a twist:  The audience knows from the beginning that somebody in the small, decaying, seacoast town will kill Luane, the bedridden gossip with the vicious tongue.  The only question is who will do it.  Will be her younger, simple, husband, Ralph?  Will it be Pete, the owner of the bar, after Luane threatens to expose him as his daughter Myra’s rapist?  Will it be Bobby, Myra’s drug-dealing boyfriend who hooks her on heroin?  Maybe it will be Rags, the alcoholic bartender in Pete’s bar, when Luane taunts him for having killed his wife and children in a drunken car crash.  Or, maybe it will be Danny Lee, the prostitute-turned-stripper at Pete’s bar who has a torrid affair with Ralph.  There is certainly no shortage of potential killers, and one of them finally does it.

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Summary: Jim Thompson’s dark malice brought to screen in Maggie Greenwald’s assured film debut

“Spoiler Alert In The Kill-Off, her directorial debut, Maggie Greenwald brought off a nasty – and terrific – piece of work. Its obscurity probably owes to the fact that it’s a `little’ film with a cast of unknowns – the kind of project that doesn’t inspire huge media campaigns no matter how good it is. Greenwald also adapted the script from the 1957 pulp novel by Jim Thompson (Coup de torchon and The Grifters also came from his writings, and he worked on a couple of Stanley Kubrick’s early movies).

The third of a century between novel and film also worked to Greenwald’s benefit in showing what Thompson could only imply (though he was a fair hand at slinging innuendo, the 1950s were still buttoned up pretty tight). So the shantoozie `Danny Lee’ is now a stripper, and some puzzling references in the book are here plainly called incest. And while Greenwald takes some liberties with the original story, streamlining and improving it, she defers to Thompson’s suggestive murk, forgoing the rhymed, clockwork plotting so ill-advisedly in vogue today.

“The Kill-Off is about milieu as much as it is about its characters, who seem to have sprouted out of it during the night. (Director of photography Declan Quinn employs one of the inkiest palettes ever seen on film, though he aims his lights with a marksman’s precision.) It’s all set in a dead-end town on the Jersey shore where an old amusement park is dying a lonely death – a stagnant backwater where malice breeds like mosquitoes out of boredom and despair. Queen of the mischief-makers is Luane (Loretta Gross), a bedridden hypochondriac who amuses herself by gossiping on the telephone all day; the movie opens with one of her targets hanging herself.

Luane’s doting and simple husband Ralph (Steve Monroe), 17 years her junior, works as a janitor around town — until a scheming young drug-dealer (Andrew Lee Barrett) ousts him out of his job. Luane and Ralph enjoy an open relationship: He comes home from his one-night stands and tells her all the details – until he sleeps with the stripper (Cathy Haase). Here, Greenwald excels in a nifty sequence cutting between the stripper’s debut, ogled by Ralph among the beer-guzzling louts, and Luane, alone, vamping around her boudoir. When Ralph keeps mum about that indiscretion, Luane knows it’s serious – and starts thinking he’s going to kill her.

But everybody wants to kill her, among them the strip-club owner whom her father chiseled out of $10-grand; his daughter, who wants her to keep quiet about the heroin habit the drug-dealer supplies; or any of the others stung by her venomous chatter. (Against all odds, Greenwald and Gross manage to scrape up some sympathy for Luane, pointedly lacking in the novel.)

The characters keep intersecting, separating and recombining until the inevitable, of course, occurs. The denouement is downbeat – this is, after all, Jim Thompson’s terrain – but the assurance and integrity of the filmmaking are uplifting.”

THE MAN WITH TWO HEADS (a/k/a THE MAN WITH TWO FACES, a/k/a DR. JEKYLL AND
MR. BLOOD)

1971; color; 80 mins.; MPAA “R”

Director:               Andy Milligan
Producer:             William Mishkin
Writer:                  Andy Milligan
Photography:      Andy Milligan
Music:                   David Tike
Set Director:       Jim Fox
Editor:                  Gerald Jackson
Photography:     Andy Milligan
Screenplay:         Andy Milligan, “Based on a story by Robert Lewis Stephenson” [Dr. Jekyll and
Mr. Hyde] Technical:            Susan Heard
Cast:                     Denis De Marne, Julia Stratton, Gay Feld, Jacqueline Lawrence, April Connors,
Berwick Kaler, Jeremy Brooks, Jennifer Summerfield, Lawrence Davies,
Raymond Cross, Janis Servals, Bryan Southcombe, W. Barrell, Grahame Steane,
Craig Malcomson, Mary Ann Turner, patricia Thorn

HORROR:  “It is London in the year 1835.  A mad killer is viciously plaguing women on the City’s streets.  Dr. William Jekyll, a surgeon and doctor of the mind, has been conducting some weird experiments with cadavers of recently deceased criminals.  He hopes to isolate those parts of the brain that cause evil in man.  Dr. Jekyll secures the killer’s body, and with the help of his assistants, dissects it, and succeeds in isolating the evil in the brain.  His experiments continue, and he succeeds in finding a serum that will control that section of the brain.  After experimenting successfully with animals, he tries the serum on himself.  Unfortunately, he is unaware that the antidote was spilled by one of his assistants, and is unavailable to him.  Within a matter of moments, he is transformed into the hideous Mr. Blood.  Now, the MAN WITH TWO HEADS is set loose in the City of London, beating, mutilating, and sometimes murdering his many victims.  Despite the fact that he has a beautiful fiancee, Mary Ann Marsden, he is attracted to April Connors, a singer of bawdy songs in a local pub.  His attentions repulse her, but when he gives her a great deal of money, she goes off with him, only to be thoroughly mistreated.  Jekyll lapses back and forth from his natural self to the loathsome Blood.  As Blood he becomes more and more repulsive and bloodthirsty, and after visiting the House of Degradation, he first murders his assistant Smithers, then April, and is about to finally get Mary Ann, when he is shot to death by the local constabulary.”  By Cult Director ANDY MILLIGAN.

Internet Movie Database Review:

Summary: Andy, WHAT were you thinking?

“A writer for the late, unlamented magazine “Demonique” tried to review this movie but got the plot hopelessly confused with THE INCREDIBLE TWO HEADED TRANSPLANT leading me to think he had not bothered to see Andy Milligan’s film at all. The protagonist in Andy’s no-budget thriller only has one head. This is actually our favourite Staten Island auteur’s take on “Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde”. We know we are well off the beaten path when Dr. Jekyll, lecturing his students, injects a disembodied brain with his new serum and it turns green (by shining a green light on it); and when Jekyll instructs his students to dismember a cadaver “So that it can be properly disposed of.” and they gleefully hack it to pieces with axes and cleavers! Andy’s eccentric touches add an originality to the plot that no one else had ever touched on (well okay maybe Hammer with THE TWO FACES OF DR. JEKYLL). The doctor’s alter ego visits an S&M club and we get to see such Milligan mainstays as flogging and a man with his eyes poked out with knitting needles. It is clear that Andy really felt the plot had nowhere to go and it becomes a fill-in-the-blank affair when only half the running time has expired. I call THE RATS ARE COMING, THERE WEREWOLVES ARE HERE his best film, this one has to be his worst. If you are a Milligan completist (like myself!) you should see it once though, his quirky charm is indeed evident even here. “

MONSTROSITY

1989; color; 90 mins.

Director:          Andy Milligan
Producer:         Lew Mishkin
Exec.Prod.:       Alexander W. Kogan, Jr. & Barry Tucker
Cast:                   Haal Borske, Carrie Anita, Michael Lunsford, Joe Balogh, David Homb

HORROR/COMEDY: Hollywood is a strange and eccentric place in normal times. Recently, it has been plagued by a series of vicious murders, rapes, and other crimes of violence. Many of these have been perpetrated by the notorious Cole gang. When a beautiful young girl is murdered by the gang, her boyfriend and his friends set out to avenge her death by creating from various human and animal parts, (scrounged from medical school and a friendly veterinarian), and avenging monstrosity. The creature comes to life and uses his awesome strength – after all, he is part gorilla – to wreak mayhem on the Cole gang. He also falls in love with a zany young woman. Eventually, he decides to drop out of society – until he can make up his mind about what he wants to do with the rest of his life. by Cult Director ANDY MILLIGAN.

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Summary: un-freakin’-believable!

“Warning—-spoilers, but with an Andy Milligan film, who cares?

“Okay, I’m no expert on Milligan films. I am an avid watcher of bad films, and Milligan’s “Bloodthirsty Butchers” definitely fits into that category, with bad acting and sound, grainy hand-held photography (by Milligan) and a plot that rips on Sweeney Todd in all the right (or should I say, wrong) ways. There is a slant on violence to women, which I personally do not like watching but Milligan seems to revel in. It is interesting that even as far back as the late 1960’s, this auteur from Minnesota (if I remember correct) was working out his sexual frustrations in such an “in your face” way that you can’t help but to say, “Man, this guy really hates women.”

This unfortunate misogynistic tone carried through to “Monstrosity” a fitting title for, to paraphrase the latter comment, possibly the worst movie ever. (Having seen so many terrible films, however, this is an issue of contention with me. Let’s not forget “Manos: Hands of Fate”.)

But, I’ll get to “Monstrosity”. The “plot” (wait, I can’t believe I just used this word to imply that “Monstrosity” has a structure)…the plot is about revenge. A dumb (thirty year old actor playing a) teenager avenges his girlfriend is attacked, raped, and then killed in the hospital by sadistic “punks” (who look about as scary as the ones in William Lustig’s “Vigilante” (hint-not too scary). The death of the girlfriend is stretched out so much (in a scene where one of the punks pulls her innards from her sliced stomach)that I began to wonder, ‘Is the director getting his kick out of watching this poor woman go through all of this?’ We, in the audience, sure aren’t enjoying it. Well, I giggled a little during the gutting scene, but not because it was meant to be funny, it is because the scene is so overplayed, the gore so cheap and hokey, and the music so nauseating that I stopped taking the depressingly misogynistic first fifteen minutes seriously.

But wait, it gets worse! The dumb teen, and his two ridiculously excitable buddies, decides to build a Golem to avenge his girlfriend’s murder. That’s right, a Golem! (oh, man, I’m laughing already). No knowledge of science necessary in building this Golem, just a claustrophobic shed stocked with pseudo-lab equipment like something out of “Bride of the Monster”. (No, I’m sorry, that equipment actually was more realistic.)Suddenly, “Monstrosity” turns into a stupid, not funny comedy in which the three build the “Golem” and try programming him to kill (by using action movie posters, a humorous idea in a sea of guffaws.) I will take a minute to comment on the acting: So bad that you will get whiplash shaking your head over and over, thinking, ‘Who are these people and how did anyone think they were good actors?’

The women are, uniformly, better actors than the male leads, but Milligan makes the female characters vain, dumb, vile, and unlikable. Granted, the male characters are not any more likable, but geez, Milligan could have atleast given the better actors (the women) more to do than constantly complain.

And, as for Franky, the “Golem”…un-freakin’-believable! What were the filmmakers thinking? Okay, I saw the cover of the DVD, which lets you know right away the monster looks ludicrous, but nothing, I repeat, NOTHING will prepare you for the full onslaught of Franky. The orange wig, the Halloween-style “crazy teeth”, the “bear” foot and claw (which is obviously a glove), and a gored right eye that looks like a fried egg with a bloody embryo. Milligan, probably due to budget (budget! this movie had a budget?) constraints, tries to make the best of one of the worst monsters ever by playing it for laughs. However, since the film isn’t intentionally funny, these scenes of attempted humor are painful, forehead-smacking moments of your life that you will never get back. Not that I particularly cared, since I kept watching…

I suppose that’s why I decided to comment on this masterpiece in bad moviedom. I couldn’t stop watching the film, despite all its negatives…I was repulsed and drawn to “Monstrosity” all at the same time. What is it about bad films that causes my judgment in taste to lapse?

Anyway, Franky is essentially a baby-man (with the bear parts) who is also a methodical avenger. (Milligan, attempting to be more “commercial”, alludes to Troma’s “Toxic Avenger” in several ways, from Franky’s attack scenes to using the same public-domain classical music which “Toxic” employs as a theme.) Franky’s relationship with a crackhead punk girl goes nowhere (except when it figures into the finale, Franky’s final nihilistic destruction spree). Franky’s “creators” go power-mad and want Franky to continue “thrill-killing” for them. (There is very little explaination given for the character motivations in this film, so not much of the plotlines make logical sense.) Franky is (kind of) the only likable character in “Monstrosity”, but the actor (Milligan regular Haal Borske) is so grating, so oblivious to his bad acting (and flubbed lines) that I couldn’t find any way to relate to the “golem”.

Man, oh man, I wish I could see a documentary on the production of “Monstrosity”. Wow, imagine seeing the creative decisions of Andy Milligan in action…”no, not a blue wig, an orange one”…”just do the dialogue, don’t worry about acting”…and maybe even an Ed Wood-inspired “That was great, print it.” Did they shoot “Monstrosity” in 35mm? I’ll bet they did, sparing no expense to ensure the film its “glossy”, zoom lense glory. And, Haal Borske, what is your acting method? Talk like Red Skelton in a bad skit and read your lines off cue cards? Did Milligan do a second take of any scene in “Monstrosity?” Probably not unless the film broke…

I will finish my comment by stating that “Monstrosity” is definitely one of the worst films ever, no arguement there. Andy Milligan made many bad films (some people hate them with a passion), but this is jaw-droppingly, disorientatingly bad! The final “twist” ending is a desperate attempt at some sort of sense being made of the proceeding 90 minutes, but forget it, the “twist” doesn’t work. The whole film doesn’t work, but I suppose that is “Monstrosity”‘s twisted “charm” (for lack of a better word). The viewer will not care about who lives and dies, whether Franky keeps the girl or not, or about what Milligan’s message really is (because he muddles the ending so annoyingly). “MONSTROSITY” is BAD! BAD! DUMB! BAD! MISOGYNISTIC! BAD!

All right, I feel clean again…but I will surely never be the same…”

OUR TOWN

STAGE PLAY: This Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Thornton Wilder “opens on the Stage Manager casually puffing on his pipe, looking at his watch and deprecating latecomers.  He then describes Grover’s Corners and takes us to the adjoining houses of Doc Gibbs and his wife and children, George and Rebecca; and editor Webb and his wife and children, Emily and Wally.  The year is 1901; the plot is as bare as the set.  Emily marries young George Gibbs, then dies in childbirth in the second act.  At her cemetery burial in the third act, we see and hear the townspeople, living and dead.  Emily pleads to return to life, is given one day to relive, then willingly goes back to the realm of the dead.” The Enthusiast, A Life of Thornton Wilder, by Gilbert A. Harrison, Ticknor & Fields, New Haven and New York, 1983, p. 179.

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Summary: An Absolute Gem of a Production!

“Working as a second shift engineer at a PBS station has it’s compensations… and the WNET production of Thornton Wilder’s OUR TOWN is one of them! The night that we aired it I didn’t get a whole lot of other work done; it grabbed me from start to finish, and I stayed married to my console and program monitors all the way through. This version has more guts than the 1940s movie version in that it’s much more true to Wilder’s original intent. This version doesn’t “chicken out” on the ending and spare Emily’s life. I always considered the Hollywood ending to be an unforgivable act of cowardice. I’ve seen the play many times before, but this production startled me in it’s final act with a single bit of stagecraft. The sequence featuring Emily’s funeral… mourners singing around the grave. Emily’s sudden appearance as she leaves the world of the living is unexpected, and ELECTRIFYING! It’s the slickest handling of this part that I’ve ever seen, anywhere!!! The following sequence with her as the new arrival to the graveyard, and her attempts to relive the best day of her life are BEAUTIFULLY handled. The performances are absolutely riveting.

“I’d STRONGLY recommend this performance for introducing teenagers to the dramatic stage… if it’s possible to get use rights, it would make an EXCELLENT classroom teaching tool, especially that amazing final act.

“If you get the chance to see this performance DO SO!!!”

FATW’s rights stem from the 1978 television version produced by its subsidiary Hartwest Television, Inc.  The rights which were obtained for that producction cover television, video, and merchandising rights; Hartwest has no interest in the stage or movie rights.  However, as a practical matter, its control of the video and television rights, effectively in perpetuity, give it an important role in any remakes.  When Hartwest is able to license a television remake, it can do so on its own, conditioned on its payment of a flat fee to the Estate of Thornton Wilder.   A movie remakeor a stage remake which would involve merchandising/video/television, would also require their joint involvement.

THE RATS ARE COMING!  THE WEREWOLVES ARE HERE! (a/k/a THE CURSE OF THE FULL MOON)

Color, 92 Minutes, 1971, MPAA “PG”

Director:               Andy Milligan
Producer:             William Mishkin
Set Director:       Jim Fox
Editor:                  Gerald Jackson
Photography:      Andy Milligan
Screenplay:         Andy Milligan
Technical:            Susan Heard
Script Girl:          Marcia Lois Jay
Cast:                      Hope Stansbury, Jackie Skarvelis, Noel Collins, Joan Ogden, Douglas Phair,
Jan Innes, Berwick Kaler, Chris Shore, George Clark, Lillian Frith

HORROR:  “The Mooneys are a strange family, living in a desolate section of 19th Century England, who manage to keep their secret from others.  Other than Malcolm, who is completely deranged and whom they keep locked up in the cellar of their mansion with many odd animals, they look and act like a slightly strange but ordinary family.  Monica, the weirdest member of the family has an affinity for rodents.  She has a pet rat, but when she suddenly become disenchanted with it, she cuts it to bits.  She also gets her kicks from strapping and torturing the demented Malcolm at every opportunity.  She is jealous of Diana, destroys her clothes and tries to get her husband Gerald to leave her.  When this fails, she goes to the old rat man who deals in all sorts of grotesque animals and purchases dozens of his specialties, man- eating rats.  She tries to train them for use against Diana, but when one of the rats bites her, she brings them back to the old man and turns them on him.  During the melee that follows, a fire breaks out and Monica runs away, leaving the old man to die from the attack of the horde of rats in the flames.  The family had been awaiting the return of Diana, the youngest step-sister (her mother died in childbirth), who married Gerald while she was away studying nursing in Scotland, so she could better take care of Pa Mooney’s frequent, serious attacks.  They cannot call in a physician, since he might realize that Pa, Phoebe, Mortimer, Malcolm and Monica are a unique breed of werewolves.  On a night of a full moon, and while the family is arguing, they one by one, become werewolves and attack each other.  Diana has a gun with silver bullets and kills them.  After the funeral Diana and Gerald come back to Mooney Manor.  He wants to pack and leave immediately.  Diana refuses to leave her palatial home.  Gerald says if she won’t go, he is leaving without her.  Diana tells Gerald that she has a surprise for him….”  Directed by Cult Director ANDY MILLIGAN.

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Summary: What fool allowed this to be distributed?

“Horrifyingly bad, this little chunk of cinematic feces ranks up there with “Drive-In Massacre” in terms of banality. The title really is the best part of the film–we rented it on a lark, supposing that it was going to be horrible (but in the good horrible/MST3K category) and wound up loathing ourselves and felt ashamed for laying down the fifty-two cents for the rental fee. Not recommended for those recovering from massive head trauma, pregnant women, children under ten or small Mexican dogs.

STREET STORY  (a/k/a STREET HITZ)

1988; color; 90 mins.

Director:              Joseph V. Vasquez
Producer:             Joseph B. Vasquez
Writer:                 Joseph B. Vasquez
Photography:     Joseph B. Vasquez
Editor:                 Joseph B. Vasquez
Music:                  Edward W. Burroughs
Cast:                    Angelo Lopez, Cookie, Lydia Ramirez, Melvin Muza, Soraya Andrade

ACTION/DRAMA:  This starkly realistic film, laced with humor and action, focuses on two young brothers, both of whom have grown up on the mean streets of the South Bronx, but with decidedly different outlooks.  Joey dreams of finishing college and moving away from the violence and despair of his surroundings. His older brother, Junior, is a young man with no dreams left.  The once close brothers find themselves torn apart in a confrontation that could change their lives forever.  First film by Joseph B. Vasquez (The Bronx War, Hangin’ With the Homeboys)

Internet Movie Database Review

“Summary: A tragic tale of two brothers living in the South Bronx

“Street Hitz is the tale of Junior and Joey. Junior wants to finish college and go to law school and become a lawyer, Joey is just trying to survive in the South Bronx and does whatever it takes so his younger brother can finish school. But the stork comes visiting and and puts Junior’s dreams in jeopardy. The video box promises a violent gangster tale. This is a grainy, street level drama that shows the lives of people living in the South Bronx and doing what they have to do just to survive. It took a lot of guts for Joseph B, Vasquez to do this movie after he made Hanging With the Homeboys (1991). Instead of kow-towing to New Line Cinema, Joseph B. Vasquez fianced and shot this movie with very little help from outsiders. Despite the obvious lack of a major budget and well known actors, Joseph B. Vasquez makes this movie work by returning to his roots. If you liked The Bronx War (1990) then you’ll like Street Hitz. B+ “

TORTURE DUNGEON (a/k/a DUNGEON OF DEATH)

Color, 80 minutes, 1970, MPAA “R”

Director:               Andy Milligan
Photography:      Andy Milligan
Producer:              William Mishkin
Screenplay:          John Borske and Andy Milligan
Technical:            John Borske
Editor:                   Gerald Jackson
Cast:                       Jeremy Brooks, Susan Cassidy, Patricia Dillon, Neil Flanagan, Richard Mason,
Maggie Rogers, Haal Borske, Donna Whitfield, George Box, Patricia Garvey,
Dan Tyra, Helen Adams, Robert Fucello

HORROR:  “The evil and demented Duke of Norfolk is attempting to take over the kingdom and no means to accomplish this end is too cruel or bizarre for him.  The unluckiest victims will end up in the Duke’s TORTURE DUNGEON.  He was meticulous in the art of mutilation and murder…. A bloody horror film with moments of titilating nudity and sex.”  Set in Medieval England, the film is rich in castles and costumes, flickering candlelight, duels and dungeons.

Internet Movie Database Summary:

“The sudden decapitation of Lord Harkin has the Kingdom, as well it should, in a state of fear. For it is well known to one and all of the citizens around and about that Norman, the evil Duke of Norwich (played by who cares) and his buddies, bimbos and cohorts over at—Drum Roll—The Torture Dungeon are responsible. Norman has plans to marry off his dimwit half-brother Albert of Aberthy to Heather McGregor of No Title, the most beautiful and sensual girl in the Kingdom. But first he has to arrange for the pitchforking of her current squeeze, William the Nobody. Heather has no idea of what she is getting into but, following the spectacular Royal Wedding followed by the erotic ceremony of the spectacular consumation of the Royal Marriage, she begins to suspect that all that is rotten does not lie entirely in Denmark, especially if Andy Milligan is around. Norman’S half sisters—this guy has no full siblings—Lady Agatha and Lady Jane, in a very good effort to warn Heather of Norman’s methods, take her down to roll–The Torture Dungeon. She is terrified at what she sees, which is somewhat surprising for one who has just been exposed to Albert, as it is basically gory sights of mutilated victims. Norman, a man with a plan, has his henchmen, Ivan the Terrible Dwarf and Maudlin the Execeutioner, do away with Albert, Lady Jane and Lady Agatha and is attempting to kill Heather, who is but doesn’t know it, the true heir to the throne recently vacated by the late, decapitated Lord Harkin. But, Norman is foiled by Margaret the Hag, a disfigured member of the Court, who spears him to death just before she is trampled to death by a horse, or audience members stampeding for the exits.”

Internet Movie Database Review:

“Summary: looks like a fairly well done high school theater production

“Another of Andy Milligan’s disjointed period horrors…and you probably know what to expect if you’ve seen any of his other films. Bizarre beyond belief, there’s everything unimaginable in this one from gay hunchback love to one-eyed hags to pitchfork gore. Dig the pseudo-Shakespearean dialog, and costumes from a 70s Renaissance Faire (Franco Zeffirelli couldn’t have done it better), plus- there’s enough gratuitous nudity to keep the sleazedogs cheaply thrilled. One to ten? Eleven. Definitely eleven.”

TRAPPED (a/k/a FOREVER MINE, a/k/a TRAPPED ALIVE)

1989; color; 90 mins.

Director:                    Leszek Burzynski
Exec.Prod.:                Alexander W. Kogan, Jr. &  Barry Tucker
Producer:                   Christopher J. Webster
Screenplay:                Leszek Burzynski, Julian Weaver, based on an original story by
Julian Weaver
Prod.Design:             Brian Savegar
Photography:           Nancy Schreiber
Editor:                       Matthew Mallinson
Cast:                           Cameron Mitchell, Alex Kubik, Randolph Powell, Elizabeth Kent, Mark
Witsken, Sullivan Hester, Michael Nash,  Laura Kallison

HORROR/ADVENTURE:  In a remote, snowbound wilderness, three desperate convicts blast their way out of a maximum security prison on Christmas Eve.  At the same time, Robin and Monica leave a party given by Robin’s father John Adams (CAMERON MITCHELL) for one with more action.  Driving slowly on the ice-slicked country roads, they are captured by the escapees.  Randy, the young getaway driver forced into the escape by the evil Face and the powerful Mungo, avoids a police roadblock by turning into the site of the long-closed “Forever Mine.”  Their vehicle crashes through the rotting cover over an old mine shaft, killing Mungo. The surviving four are left to seek a way out of the maze of old tunnels.  They soon learn that something terrible lives in the mine.  Deputy Sheriff Bill Williams, stopping at the caretaker’s cottage to use the telephone, seduces the bored wife, Rachel, before pursuing the escapees. He too becomes one of the hunted, as the group desperately tries to escape the unseen terror.  After a harrowing and dramatic climax, Robin and Randy, the only survivors, make their way to the surface.  The production was designed by Academy Award Winner Brian Savegar (A ROOM WITH A VIEW, MAURICE).