Making her theatrical debut in 1947, Jeanne Moreau went from actress and singer to director and screenwriter with this film, one of three she’d direct (along with L’Adolescente and Lillian Gish). It’s a semi-autobiographical tale about the lives four actresses, their loves and their friendship.

Nearing forty, Sarah (Moreau) invites her best friend Laura (Lucia Bosè, ArcanaSomething Creeping In the Dark), Caroline (Caroline Cartier, The Nude Vampire) and Julienne (Francine Racette, Four Flies On Grey Velvet) to stay a few days. Each woman has a tale of love to share — which makes this ironic that it’s a New World distributed picture, as it’s a classier version of the narrative in their occupation films — as Sarah has just left her longtime lover. Laura may be pregnant, but is having an affair with a woman. Caroline is unlucky in love and Julienne is dealing with the overly amorous attentions of an American actor (Keith Carradine).

Some could say this is a self-indulgent film about the women that Moreau knew. But it was all rather interesting and shows a side of women of a certain age that we never really get to see on film and is therefore brave of Moreau to share with us.

Beyond the Gates of Hell (2022)

Starting with grindhouse-style trailers for Zombie Blast Fighter and Don’t Eat My Flesh (and how great of a title is that?) and then following that with a murder straight out of Lucio Fulci, this movie presents a forty-plus-minute tribute to the godfather of gore’s three bloodiest films The BeyondGates of Hell and The House By the Cemetery all with a modern flair.

It’s smart because it even contends that the murder that drives the entire film happened in 1981, the same year that Fulci was popping eyeballs on screens worldwide.

Ian (Eric Larsen), who works in the movie business but keeps getting screwed over, and Katrina (Traci Burr) have just bought a new home when they’re made an offer by the very real estate agent who sold it to them, Sheryl (Brinke Stevens, always a beyond appreciative face to see show up in any movie and used to incredible effect here). She wants to offer them a hundred grand over asking price to get out of their house.

Does that seem strange? Look, I bought and sold a house in the middle of coronavirus lockdown so I’ll believe everything after what we went through.

The reason? The old owner — who also worked in films — was a suspected devil worshipper who was burned alive in the basement of the house. What was his name? Schweick? To make things worse, just the year before, a young girl had been stabbed in the basement.

Now, Katrina worries that Ian moved them in so he could get material for a new film. Or is it even worse and are they doomed to relive the same cycle as ten years before? Would you want to live in a home built over the gates of hell? What if it came with its own housekeeper (Allie Perez) who just randomly shows up while you’re in the shower and claims she’s part of owning the house?

From there, all sorts of dark and bloody events unfold, like Father Tom (Brad Banacka) trying and failing to bless the home (can the Amityville house be considered adjacent to the Fulci Cinematic Universe?) to Ian and Katrina’s daughter Heather (Janet Lopez) getting stalked by Jennifer to — of course — the blind Henrietta (Jennifer Moriarty) showing up to reveal the secrets of this house. If you’re wondering if zombies will show up, well, you’re on the right track.

Thanks to perfect music by Joshua Palace and the most assured direction and writing I’ve seen from Dustin Ferguson, Beyond the Gates of Hell rises beyond its low budget origins to create a film that follows the Fulci formula as if it were a cover band standing in admirably for a band we’ll never be able to see play live ever again. Before you get critical of someone redoing Fulci, well, wasn’t Zombi intended to redo Romero? And if we love Italian exploitation cinema and demand originality, we can’t have those two things at the same time. It was all based on remaking and remixing past films to create new experiences.

Here’s hoping that Ferguson rides the wave of this success into creating movies of his own that can rival the past that he adores so much.

RONIN FLIX BLU RAY RELEASE: Night Visitor (1989)

First off: writer Randal Viscovich claimed that Night Visitor was plagued with several supernatural occurrences that freaked out the cast and crew. He speculates it had to do with the film’s subject matter of Satanism. Yes! Carny BS!

Billy (Derek Rydall, Phantom Of The Mall) has seen his history teacher Zachary Willard (Allen Garfield) commit a series of occult murders, but who is going to believe a kid that’s always in trouble? The detectives — Ronald Devereaux (Elliott Gould) and Captain Crane (Richard Roundtree)? Or will he and his girlfriend have to go all giallo and solve this themselves?

Man, this movie has a great cast that also includes Michael J. Pollard, Shannon Tweed, Brooke Bundy, Henry Gibson and a cameo by Teri Weigel. I’m also into any movie that took advantage of the Satanic Panic, even if this is a few years late.

The Ronin Flix release of Night Visitor has interviews with Viscovich, director Rupert Hitzig and editor Glenn Erickson and a trailer. You can get it from MVD.

MVD DVD RELEASE: Wendy O. Williams – WOW: Live and Fucking Loud From London! (1985)

Shot at the Camden Palace in London in September 1985, this concert video has Wendy moving from “Queen of Punk Rock” to “High Priestess of Metal.” Even better, Lemmy and Wurzel from Motörhead join her for a rendition of “Jailbait.”

Originally broadcast throughout Europe on Sky TV. this was directed by Plasmatics creator Rod Swenson and produced by Phillip Goodhand-Taite. I love that this has been released, as there isn’t a lot of live footage of Wendy from this era and her band sounds tight.

I remember the first time I saw The Plasmatics on Fridays and being absolutely enraptured — I was seven, go figure — by Wendy, a woman who seemed for all intents and purposes to be a chainsaw-wielding supervillainess but completely real. My parents were scandalized as she destroyed a car on their television but I am certain that this is the day that I became a man.

You can get this concert DVD from MVD.

CLEOPATRA ENTERTAINMENT BLU RAY RELEASE: Tubular Bells 50th Anniversary Tour: Live At The Royal Festival Hall (2022)

Across two disks, this concert film has four song movements — Tubular Bells, The Gem, Summit Day, Moonlight Shadow — plus a bonus feature-length documentary that explores the history and legacy of Tubular Bells. It also has how the new live production came together — filmed over three nights at the Royal Festival Hall with dance and acrobats — and a bonus interview with Tubular Bells creator Mike Oldfield, who said, “I am sure that the 50th Anniversary Live Concert Experience of Tubular Bells will be spectacular, theatrical, fantastical and thrilling. I’m so excited it is premiering in 2021, marking 50 years from when I started writing the music and will be touring the world through to 2023, the 50th anniversary of the original album release.”

Tubular Bells has sold 17.5 million copies sold worldwide and 18 million streams, so nearly everyone knows it. Oldfield was 19 years old when it was originally recorded and he played almost all of the instruments. It’s amazing to hear live on this blu ray, as the original version has hundreds of overdubs. To hear it all played at once, all with multiple instrumentalists is a work of beauty.

You can get this from MVD.

2022 Scarecrow Psychotronic Challenge Day 31: The Proposal (2009)

31. RETIREMENT PARTY: Watch any movie with a character named Kevin in it. Bonus points if it has a badass movie dog.

I mean, this is not a Halloween movie but the Scarecrow Challenge has asked for a movie with a Kevin in it and a dog and I didn’t want to watch Balto and to be honest, my wife has made me watch this movie at least once a week since I’ve known her.

Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock) is the Canadian executive editor-in-chief of a New York book publishing company that everyone hates and she’s fine with that. No one hates her more than her assistant Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds), who gets most of her abuse. Her boss — Michael Nouri! — tells her that her visa renewal application has been denied due to visa term violation and she faces deportation back to Canada, losing her job and her life in New York City.

So why not marry Andrew? Why not go back to his hometown of Sitka, Alaska, a place where his father (Craig T. Nelson) is the businessman who pretty much owns the town? Then there’s his mom (Mary Steenburgen, who I think was contractually obligated to be an attractive mother in every 2000s movie) and grandmother (Betty White, who this movie seems to be made for). Also an ex-girlfriend (Malin Akerman) and Oscar Nunez as Ramone, who works every job in town, including waiter, shopkeeper,  minister and male stripper. Things work out fine because this is a romantic comedy from 2009.

As for Kevin the dog, he’s a White Eskimo puppy played by four dogs, Flurry, Sitka, Nanu and Winter, who were also in Hotel for Dogs. He almost gets taken by an eagle, which is pretty scary when you think about it, because he’s way bigger than my dog and man, I don’t want to explain to my wife that Cubby got taken by an eagle, particularly after how many times she made me watch this.

SLASHER MONTH: Curse of the Puppet Master (1998)

Directed by David DeCoteau and written by Benjamin Carr and David Schmoeller, fan love for the puppets brought them back five years after Puppet Master 5 was supposed to end all of this. Most of the story takes place at The House of Marvels, a museum run by Dr. Magrew (George Peck) and his daughter Jane (Emily Harrison), who soon meet a gas station employee named Robert Winsley (Josh Green) who is a sculptor. As he works on a puppet for the doctor, he starts having nightmares that he is turning into wood. He also nearly kills a man who attacks Jane and the Magrew explains that they all have a violent side.

By the end of the movie, the puppets have turned on the doctor and come to the side of Robert, particularly when the young artist’s soul is placed into the puppet he created, Tank. He then blows the head off the doctor while his daughter watches. So yeah — revenge is sweet when you’re small.

Sure, most of the puppet animation is just recycled from the other movies. And yeah, this is pretty much the same movie as Sssssss. Yet I think you have to appreciate that level of exploitation balls, you know? It’s nearly Italian.

What’s On ScreenPix?

Tubi picks are coming back, I promise, but I wanted to get the word out about ScreenPix. They aren’t paying me but let me tell you, other than Tubi, no other channel gives me more of the old school video store feeling than this one.

ScreenPix is similar to StarzEncore and offers a handpicked selection of uncut and commercial-free classic films. I subscribe to it through the Roku Channel and it’s $2.99 a month. I know you can also add it through Apple TV, Amazon Prime and some cable providers.

One of the reasons I have kept my subscription is because ScreenPix is owned by Epix, which is owned by MGM, which owns so much of the Cannon catalog. That means that so many Cannon movies that you might be hunting for are right here for one low price. There’s also more than just Cannon!

Also: If you click any of the titles, you can read the full article on each movie.

Here are some movies that are now on ScreenPix that you might want to check out:

Valley of the Dolls: There are times when I get down and I know that I just have to take a handful of dolls to feel better. Or maybe just watch this.

Lady Chatterley’s LoverWant to pretend that you’re a grown up and you have Cinemax and can watch this whenever you want? Now you can. You can live that life.

House of the Long ShadowsIt took Cannon to get the greatest living horror stars into a movie that totally doesn’t do them any justice, but hey, here it is.

10 to Midnight: “You know what this is for, Warren? It’s for jacking off!”

Assassination: “I don’t want to die from a terminal orgasm.”

Hero and the TerrorI kind of love that this movie puts Chuck up against something that he just can’t sidekick to solve, which means he still kicks it.

Ghosts Can’t Do ItIf you ever wanted to know what movie I hate, this is it. This is the worst movie I’ve ever seen and yet I still hate watch it all the time.

JoeA movie not discussed so much today, this was such a big movie that it totally made the pre-Golan and Globus Cannon.

Unholy RollersIf you don’t want to watch Claudia Jennings in a roller derby movie, we can never be friends.

Pray for DeathIf you told young Sam that one day, he could watch this movie any time over his TV whenever he pressed a button, he would have been so happy. He still is.

Treasure of the Four CrownsIt’s not in 3D but let me tell you, no movie is going to try so hard to entertain you. What a glorious piece of insanity this is.

The Seven Magnificent GladiatorsBruno Mattei making a movie for Cannon. Can life be perfect? Yes, for a very short time.

Operation Kid BrotherIf you think you’ve seen every Connery Bond, well, have you seen the one with every Bond actor but Sean and instead it has his brother? Well, get on it.

The Naked CageA Cannon WIP movie? Oh yes.

Double TroubleIf you watched Cannon’s The Barbarians and wanted more of the Barbarian Brothers, well…I have so really good news for you.

Penitentiary 2: Yes, that is Ernie Hudson trying to kill our hero in this picture. This movie is beyond great. In fact, this series just keeps getting better with every sequel.

Avenging ForceIf you love Cannon and you haven’t seen this movie, then you don’t love Cannon as much as you will. Dudikoff. James. John P. Ryan being a maniac. Oh man, I love this movie more than most of my ex-girlfriends.

RageRichard Norton as a kickboxer caught with his pants down. A 21st Century Menahem made masterpiece!

P.O.W. The EscapeIf you drink every time someone mentions everyone going home, you won’t.

Exterminator 2You won’t believe that this movie — just like Joe above — was saved in the edit.

Timestalkers: Terry Funk, Bob the Goon and Klaus Kinski. Did I cast this?

The Happy Hooker Goes HollywoodAdmit it. You want to see Adam West’s fuck style. Well, here’s your chance. I mean, it’s softcore but still. Also an early Cannon!

Body and SoulLeon Isaac Kennedy could make a movie about eating dinner and I would watch it. Luckily, he made way more exciting movies than that.

Tough Guys Don’t DanceIf nothing makes you sign up for this channel, this should do it. I want everyone reading this to see this movie and get obsessed.

Sharon’s BabyThere are days when I look through movies and just drive my wife nuts. I started yelling so loud when I saw that this ScreenPix had this movie under its alternate title that she thought I was hurt.  I think that perhaps I overreacted but I also think it was justified.

The Fourth WarAnother deep cut Cannon video release! If Roy Scheider gets drunk on J&B, is it a giallo?

Finest Hour: A 21st Century Golan release that asks, what if Top Gun had Navy SEALS and Rob Lowe?

There’s also tons of Larry Cohen, Phil Collins in BusterSome Girls DoCrimewaveRolling ThunderMidnight Witness from 21st Century, Wild ThingDetroit 9000The Crimson Cult, TentaclesSquirmThe Rosary MurdersAre You In the House Alone?Iron Warrior, Cannon’s Aladdin, rare Cannon find The Kitchen TotoRappin’The Late Great Planet EarthPowaqqatsiDeja VuSurrenderOver the Brooklyn Bridge and The Apple.

What’s on Paramount Plus?

Usually this would be the space for Tubi picks, but I decided that it’s time to take a look at a few other streaming services for a few weeks. Don’t worry! I’ll never give up on Tubi and will return to find more picks for you soon.

Paramount Plus is a service we bought when we realized that our new home wouldn’t have antenna service for CBS so we couldn’t get KDKA news. Now they have a free streaming CBS News app on Roku, but we ended up liking Paramount Plus enough and it’s only $4.99 a month.

I’m always shocked that there are so many interesting movies hidden on Paramount Plus and no one talks about it. So here are some films worth watching on this streaming service.

All the Kind Strangers: LINK

Stacy Keach and Samatha Eggar are stuck as the father and mother of an entire house of strange children who kill their parents every time they get bored with them. This TV movie gets crazy and that’s the way I like it.

American Ninja: LINKAmerican Ninja 2: The Confrontation: LINK, American Ninja 3: Blood Hunt: LINK, American Ninja 4: The Annihilation: LINK

I know the world is not great, but when I hear someone complain about how much worse we are thanks to the internet, I have to say something. We live in a world now where I can just watch the first four  American Ninja movies whenever I want.

Buried Alive (1990): LINK

Man, this movie was made for Vinegar Syndrome and I’m so excited that they’re releasing it. It’s also on Paramount Plus! This movie is deranged and you could be happy with your monthly fee just with this one watch.

Chained for Life: LINK

The Hilton Twins were real life Siamese twins. They appeared in Freaks and this film, the only one that dared to have them be the leads. A few years after this movie, they made a public appearance at a drive-in Charlotte, North Carolina. Their tour manager abandoned them and they never left town, working in a grocery store for the rest of their lives. But this movie invites you to choose the ending as one of the twins kills the other’s lover.

The Christine Jorgensen Story: LINK

A fictionalized biographical film about trans woman Christine Jorgensen, this movie takes her book and does kind of whatever it wants with it.

Dangerously Close: LINK

A high school full of thirty-year-old teenagers engaged in class warfare as directed by Albert Pyun with a great soundtrack? Oh Cannon you are the best forever.

Detective School Dropouts: LINK

Another Cannon find that’s available on Paramount Plus, this comedy was on HBO so often when I was a kid. Now, it can be on at any time.

Don’t Look In the Basement: LINK

I love that someone normal could just be looking through what movies are on this service and accidentally allow an S.F. Brownrigg movie to be let loose on their psyche.

Hell Squad: LINK

They have to save the world through assassination but first, bubble baths.

Hollywood Harry: LINK

If you love Robert Forster, well…he did everything in this just about, directing, writing and starring. Plus, a happy Joe Spinell!

Dr. Goldfoot and the Girl Bombs: LINKDr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine: LINK

I love these movies but even then I wonder, how was the only movie that Vincent Price and Mario Bava made together was a ripoff of James Bond?

Dr. Heckyl and Mr. Hype: LINK

One of the first Golan and Globus-produced Cannon Films, this movie is…well, it’s something.

Messiah of Evil: LINK

How about that for good taste? Yes, this amazing slice of seventies strangeness is right there and can infiltrate your world at any moment.

Ninja 3: The Domination: LINK

It takes everything that I have in me not to just watch this movie all day and all night. I want to watch it right now. This is everything Cannon is within one movie.

The Racing Scene: LINK

Sometimes, I look through channels and just go, “Wow!” and “Oh I can’t believe this!” Becca sometimes asks what’s so exciting and when I answer that I’ve found a rare Andy Sidaris movie, she realizes that she should never ask me that question.

Santa and the Three Bears: LINK

Why does Paramount Plus have a Barry Mahon children’s movie? I have no idea either.

Savage Island: LINK

Linda Blair! A remix of a whle bunch of other movies! Ajita WIlson! Penn Jillette getting killed! My love for this movie has no limits.

Schizoid: LINK

I think mental health is very important but if your new psychiatrist is Klaus Kinski, please stop treatment.

Seed of Innocence: LINK

The deepest of deep Cannon deep cuts? Nearly. I can only assume that when you buy the MGM library you get so many things thrown in.


Another movie that I’m shocked to find here, a post-apocalyptic barbarian movie that throws everything in and asks you to love it.

The Violent Years: LINK

Ed Wood knew what I wanted, even as he made these movies before I was born. I want girl gangs to destroy the world.

Voyage Into Space: LINK

This movie absolutely destroyed me as a child and I still tear up when I watch it as an adult. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

There’s a ton more, but hopefully that will get you started.

Is there anything great you’ve found? Let me know.

Just Jaeckin (8.8.1940-9.6.2022) RIP

From the official French press release in English:

Just Jaeckin the director of Emmanuelle with Sylvia Kristel died on September 6 in Brittany after a long illness at 82 years.

Emmanuelle released in 1974 was a phenomenal and societal success that contributed to the evolution of morals in many countries.

This success, however, disrupted and overshadowed the multi-faceted talent of the photographer, commercial director and sculptor that he was before becoming the director of “Emmanuelle”.

He continued his film career by directing Story of O with Corinne Cléry, Madame Claude with Françoise Fabian and Dayle Haddon, Lady Chatterley’s Lover with Sylvia Kristel, Gwendoline with Tawny Kitaen and Zabou Breitman, as well as two comedies Girls with Anne Parillaud and The Last Romantic Lover with Dayle Haddon, his most personal film.

A generous and engaging personality, Just Jaeckin has, through his multiple artistic activities, captured his era with elegance and lightness.

During the Algerian war, he made an unbreakable friendship with Philippe Labro.

Birkin/Gainsbourg by Jaeckin

In his famous portraits (Brigitte Bardot, Birkin/Gainsbourg, Jane Fonda, Barbara) as well as in his films, he made a point of portraying as main characters, women he admired and respected.

He died surrounded by his sculptor wife Anne and his photographer daughter Julia.