Welcome to this week’s new B-Movie Enema review. If you’re roughly my age (46) and frequented cable TV and video stores in the 80s and 90s, there were a few titles that almost seemed mythical in their reputation. These are your Faces of Death movies or Heavy Metal or Flesh Gordon or Wizards or maybe even something like a movie that had a tad more mainstream acceptance like Watership Down. These were movies that were full of wonder in the fact that they were either seemingly explicitly adult or were gory or, as is the case with Wizards, Heavy Metal, and Watership Down, were animated movies that were either not for kids or featured some pretty extreme stuff that would scar kids.
This week, we have a film from British cinematographer and director Freddie Francis – Girly. Now, this one was more commonly known as Mumsy, Nanny, Sonny and Girly in the United Kingdom. We’ll come back around to the utterly bizarre plot of Girly in a bit. First, we should talk about Freddie Francis.
Francis is best known for his work with Hammer Film Productions on films like The Evil of Frankenstein and Dracula Has Risen from the Grave and from Hammer rival Amicus Productions on The Deadly Bees and Tales from the Crypt. But, in truth, Francis was a very keen cinematographer. He twice won Oscars for 1960’s Sons and Lovers and 1989’s Glory. Beyond those films, he has a ton of other significant films he shot like 1980’s The Elephant Man directed by David Lynch, Karel Reisz’s 1981 film The French Lieutenant’s Woman starring Meryl Streep and Jeremy Irons, and Martin Scorsese’s creepy as hell 1991 remake Cape Fear.
He also shot Lynch’s 1984 version of Dune, so… you know… they can’t all be winners.
No, no… That’s not the title of my Tinder profile. Nope, Hideous! is the final chapter of the Full Moon Fever III: For the Love of Jacqueline Lovell theme month here on B-Movie Enema. It’s been a pretty good one, hasn’t it? We had Head of the Family, which was a solid entry from Charles Band himself. We had Ms. Lovell seductively host an anthology in the confusingly titled Lolida 2000. We had a somewhat infamous entry from the end of the 90s that she headlined, The Killer Eye.
Alas, all good things must come to an end.
And an end is what we’ll experience with 1997’s Hideous! Much like with other mid to late 90s Full Moon films (i.e. the Subspecies series), we find ourselves in Romania for this final entry. Romania has long been attracting film companies, particularly those wanting to save some scratch on production costs, for a number of reasons. A lot of people in Romania are skilled enough laborers to build sets, do bit role or extra work, do stunts, and the location is generally interesting in terms of looks. Hell, even today you can find many productions being made in Eastern Europe like xXx from the earlier part of the 2000s, Season of the Witch with Nic Cage and Ron Perlman, or much more recently like with Watcher starring Maika Monroe. It seems as though it’s easy to spot when a movie gets made in that part of the country for some reason. Oftentimes, it’s not spectacularly great that you recognize that as a shooting location because it could some indication of the quality of the film.
Welcome to B-Movie Enema! And welcome to another new theme month. However, what’s old is new again because this theme month is the third time I’ve come down with a case of FULL MOON FEVER! Oh yeah! In February 2017, I did my first ever Full Moon Fever and covered a quartet of classic flicks from Charles Band, the creator of both Empire Pictures in the mid 80s and then closed out the 80s with Full Moon Productions.
Full Moon came along during the boom of the video stores. They partnered up with Paramount Pictures to help stock the shelves of your local Blockbuster (or, my preference, the ma and pop video stores in strip malls or crammed into some dilapidated building somewhere dark and dangerous). However, by the mid 90s, that started to fade and Full Moon was producing stuff on their own, and those productions were shaky at best.
But Full Moon had another angle to their movies. Sure, they’d release some sci-fi and horror flicks – which were their most popular releases – yet they also had a soft core porn side to their business. That helped fill my second Full Moon Fever theme month in January 2021, Torchlight Diaries. For this third trip into the moonlight, I’m going to kind of do a little bit from column A and a little bit from column B and bridge the horror and sci-fi side with their more erotic type stuff through one spectacularly pretty actress that worked in many Full Moon films – Jacqueline Lovell.
Welcome to Full Moon Fever III – For the Love of Jacqueline Lovell and we start right here with 1996’s Head of the Family!
And so we have come to the end of another year. B-Movie Enema has done all sorts of fun stuff throughout 2022. We revisited Russ Meyer. We entered into the Madea Cinematic Universe for the first time. Also, for the first time, Steven Seagal showed up to sit around for a couple hours. We plowed through Lucio Fulci’s Gates of Hell Trilogy. AND I’ve done all sorts of digging into the themes of the Phantasm series. We’ve done it all, Enemaniacs.
So, let’s close things out with a movie that actually got fairly decent review from none other than Janet Maslin from The New York Times. Yessir… It’s time we celebrate the end of one year and the beginning of the next while we all Get Crazy!
What’s more, this is the return of a director we’ve seen before – Allan Arkush. Arkush co-directed the incredibly fun Hollywood Boulevard with Joe Dante. That’s a fun movie. I feel like we could very easily do more of Arkush’s stuff. His next film was as a co-director on 1978’s Deathsport that stars Claudia Jennings. Then, he rattled off three solo efforts in quick succession – Rock ‘n’ Roll High School (probably his most fondly remembered), Heartbeeps (a big ol’ swing and miss in terms of movies), and Get Crazy. Arkush had talent and still works today in TV. In fact, he was a Primetime Emmy Award winner for his musical mini-series The Temptations.
Again, the Roger Corman family tree making good in the biz.
He’s gonna take you back to the past to play the shitty games that suck ass. He’d rather have a buffalo take a diarrhea dump in his ear. He’d rather eat the rotten asshole of a road killed skunk and down it with beer. Now, he’s going to be the focus of this week’s B-Movie Enema article, the 350th to be exact. I’m going to discuss both the man and his film – 2014’s Angry Video Game Nerd: The Movie.
I’m going to get to the significance of this particular movie and the man behind it, James Rolfe, in just a few moments, but first, I want to circle back around to that number I just mentioned. This is the 350th edition of this blog (is that a thing – can I call a blog post an edition?). That’s hardly an insignificant feat. I’m going to take a few minutes to pat myself on the back over said feat.
You know? I feel like it was only a matter of time before Madea came to B-Movie Enema. And, sure, maybe I could have started with the beginning of the MCU (no, not that one – the Madea Cinematic Universe), but screw it. It’s time for Halloween and dagnabbit, this seems to be oozing with potential to begin with. So, here it is… Welcome to the blog, Tyler Perry, and let’s talk about Boo! A Madea Halloween.
Damn… There’s a lot to unpack here, but I think we should do some seasonal stuff first.
October is kind of a special time for me. It’s the centerpiece of my favorite season, fall, and a month that I love getting bundled up with the lights out and watching horror movies. It was also the month in which B-Movie Enema was born. Way back in 2014, B-Movie Enema began, but it also ended shortly afterwards. However, once it was resurrected in early 2016, October has been a whole thing here. This month, I’m doing all movies that have a very specific Halloween slant to them. We begin with Mr. Tyler Perry and his Madea character.