VIDEO ARCHIVES NOTES: This movie was discussed on the August 9, 2022 episode of the Video Archives podcast and can be found on their site here.

Directed by Clint Eastwood, written by Alex Lasker and Wendell Wellman, and based on the novel by Craig Thomas, Firefox is about a jet that doesn’t exist. The MiG-31 Firefox looks like the SR-71 Blackbird — you know, the one the X-Men flew — but in the book, it was a MiG-25.

How do you make a not-so-real jet look real? You get John Dykstra. He came up with a brand new technique for shooting the plane — which would be against a clear blue sky and not in space like the flying in the Star Wars movies — called reverse blue-screen photography. He coated the plane with phosphorus paint and shot it with harsh light against a black background, then ultraviolet light to create two mattes that would separate the model and the sky.

The Firefox is the kind of plane that could win the Cold War. Radar can’t see it, it goes Mach 6 and the weapons are controlled by the pilot’s brain. The British and Americans decide to steal it, sending former United States Air Force Major Mitchell Gant (Clint Eastwood, who else?) to steal it with help from the three scientists who made the jet.

I never saw Firefox, but I sure played the laserdisc arcade game.

The game came out nearly two years after the movie. Published by Atari, it used almost thirty hours of real footage that came right from the movie. It was pretty awesome to get to hear Eastwood’s voice while you pretended to be flying this incredible stealth war machine.

After making this film, Eastwood never worked with. his longtime editor Ferris Webster again. He never told him why and they had worked together for a decade. Webster had even moved closer to Eastwood to make editing with him easier.  Supposedly, he died heartbroken.

Craig Thomas, on the other hand, loved Eastwood. When he published a sequel book, Firefox Down, he changed the plane to be more like the movie. The book had the dedication “For Clint Eastwood .. pilot of the Firefox.” Several of the characters from those books also appear in Thomas’ novels Winter Hawk and A Different War.

This movie always seemed like Star Wars to me. I may not have been all that off, as two actors from The Empire Strikes Back show up: John Ratzenberger, years before Cheers, played a junior officer in both movies while Kenneth Colley plays Colonel Kontarsky in this and Admiral Piett in both Empire and Return of the Jedi.

As for the Firefox itself, it was painted white and shows up in Chevy Chase movie Deal of the Century.

I felt about this movie probably the same way I would have as a kid. It’s thrilling when the jets battle in the air and the rest of the movie is waiting for the jets.

I Was a Zombie for the F.B.I. (1982)

Directed by Marius Penczner and filmed by students from Memphis State University, now known as the University of Memphis, this has a very familiar looking stop motion creature in it. If you were watching music videos in 1983, you saw ZZ Top’s “TV Dinners.” Well, that same monster appears in both, as that video was also directed by Penczner.

After landing in Pleasantville, United States, aliens convince two criminals to help them rule the world by using Uni-Cola, the most popular soft drink around. In addition to that monster, the aliens can put people into a zombie-like form, which gives this movie its title.

Made for just $27,000, most people of a certain age saw this paired with Attack of the Killer Tomatoes on USA’s Night Flight. Once it came out on DVD, it got ed-edited — 33 minutes less! — and what remains is a really fun film that feels as if it really was made in the 50s.

“My Cookies! My Cookies! My Cookies! 40 Years of Pandemonium” by JOE ZASO and BRYAN THOMAS NORTON

ABOUT THE AUTHORS: Joe Zaso is a NewYork-based actor, filmmaker, model and cookbook author, Joe Zaso is a performer on the stage and screen. He’s also the director of some awesome shot on video movies from his teenage years, such as Screambook
and It’s Only a Movie

Bryan Norton has an M.F.A. degree in Film Production from New York University’s Tisch School of The Arts Graduate Film Program, and a B.A. in Cinema Studies from Sarah Lawrence College. As a professor and lecturer of film, Bryan has taught film directing and screenwriting throughout the United States since 2001 and served as the chairperson of The New York Film Academy. He also has consulted on several documentaries, books and articles relating to the history and analysis of the horror genre, including Going To Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film, Corman’s World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel and Fangoria Magazine

I’m so excited that they offered this article to the site. Enjoy!

Is it any surprise that two of 1980’s highest grossers spawned their own hybrid-subgenre that fizzled out before it even started?  They were the disaster spoof Airplane! (ranking at #4) and the slasher classic Friday the 13th (ranking at #17*) which were both from Paramount coincidently.  A perfectly capital idea to take these two genres and blend them together had studios racing against the clock to get their horror spoofs into theaters.  The result?  A bizarre wave of mostly independent (some admittedly under-produced) releases rushed into production all hoping for a piece of the profitable parody pie.  The 1981-82 roster included Student Bodies, Saturday the 14th, Wacko and National Lampoon’s Class Reunion. MGM was the studio behind this coup known as Pandemonium and what might have seemed ideal in every way didn’t exactly have the desired end result. In fact, what would have had a wide theatrical release (promotional materials, posters, lobby cards and all were all printed and ready to go) ended up relegated to a tiny limited theatrical release on April 2, 1982. Most of us discovered this peculiar seemingly unheard of gem when it hightailed it to HBO and home video.

Originally titled, Thursday the 12th, Pandemonium is a rather ambitious production considering its silly nature.  Produced by the team of Doug Chapin and Barry Krost who unnerved the world with When a Stranger Calls (1979), this wacko extravaganza was directed by the late great Alfred Sole (Alice, Sweet, Alice and Tanya’s Island) who passed away not long before this article was written.  Not since The Sentinel (1976) has such a bizarre studio movie had such an impressive cast of classic stars, has-beens, currently hot and soon-to-be-famous stars which include Carol Kane, Tommy Smothers, Candice Azzara, Judge Reinhold, Debralee Scott, Eve Arden, Donald O’Connor, Kaye Ballard, Marc McClure, Phil Hartman, an uncredited Eileen Brenann, David L. Lander, Paul (Pee Wee Herman) Ruebens, Sidney Lassick, Miles Chapin, Tab Hunter, Edie McClurg, Warhol vet Pat Ast, and dozens of other familiar character actors.

Like Friday the 13th and several other holiday-themed slashers, Pandemonium begins many years before at the scene of the hideous massacre of a cheerleader team which is impaled with a javelin and transformed into a virtual shish-ke-bob.    Who’s the guilty party?  Perhaps the jilted Brooklyn-accented wannabe cheerleader, Bambi (Candy Azzara) or someone with a twisted agenda all his/her own.   The massacre causes the famed school to shut down for 20 years (seems to be the favoured time lapse for all slasher movies) with Bambi now returning to re-open the school as her own cheerleading camp. Despite the many warnings of the locals, Bambi perseveres and soon a hapless fresh-faced gang of perky and horny cheerleaders move in for the summer.  However, a stranger with open-fingered gloves seemed determined to terminate the camp through any homicidal method necessary including a killer electric toothbrush, megaphone impalings, pom-pom suffocation, exploding trampolines that sends one character into a jumbo jet full of camera-snapping Asians, and most diabolical of all – a drowning in a tub of cookies and milk.

We were able to catch up with three of the film’s stars who all seem genuinely amazed and touched that the world still fondly remembers this oddball gem after 40 years.

Starring as Candy the Carrie White-inspired good girl, Carol Kane gives a beaming and delicious performance.  Now residing in NYC’s Upper West Side, Carol reminisced…

CAROL KANE: I think I was told about the movie by my friend Bud Cort, and I knew producer Doug Chapin. We did When a Stranger Calls together a couple of years before.  I grew up loving the Smothers Brothers.  So funny and talented.  I was thrilled to work with Tommy. I had no idea that Pandemonium had a cult following and people still enjoy it today. Isn’t that wonderful! That’s the best thing for an actor to hear. When one of my movies is mentioned, when I look back and remember, it’s more of the experience that I attach to it.  I’ll always cherish that movie because that’s where I met Pee Wee Herman.  He’s one of my favorite people. We’ve been friends ever since. After talking to you about Pandemonium, now I want to see it again!

Another up-and-coming familiar face, Miles Chapin played Andy, one of the sex-starved cheerleaders who was smitten with Candy.

MILES CHAPIN: It was great because honestly our director Alfred Sole didn’t have a great sense of humor on his own.  He wasn’t a comedy director.  He was a horror director.  So basically he said, “If any of you guys have any ideas, please throw them up. Let’s hear them.”  He was surrounded by people who knew and loved comedy, so that was why we were able to get away with everything.  He had the producers on his side, but he was out of his element because it was a comedy.  He had a great visual sense.

Last, but not least, the divine Candy Azzara gives a charming performance as Bambi, the hard-working, but ill-fated camp owner who clearly believed if you can’t cheer, teach.  To this day, her Esther Williams-inspired death scene is an absolute guilty pleasure that still ignites chuckles galore to this day.

CANDY AZZARA: The milk bath (laughs)!!  That was the hardest thing in the world!  Because I had to eat those chocolate cookies and I saw bits of dirt and hair in the bathtub! (laughs)  It took about a day to shoot that scene.  And then the milk went up nose!  They used real milk and they just left it there I said, “Am I desperate or what!” (laughs) I always thought of my father.  I did my father [inspiration for her cookie-eating style].  The yum sounds.  He always used to go like that.  I loved the production. I just get such a kick out of acting.  I love acting.  Any part I do is like the most important part in the world.  I don’t care how big or what.  Pandemonium wasn’t a hit like Airplane!, but now it’s becoming a cult thing.

It’s clear that Alfred Sole’s strong production design sense is felt throughout the movie as every corner of the screen is laden with details galore.  This forte along with his seeming displeasure with directing led to him spending the remainder of his career as a production designer of many features and TV shows including the new McGyver, Castle, Moonlight and Melrose Place.

Pandemonium is still a favorite amongst those who remember it well and while it may not resonate with today’s audiences, it certainly can’t be faulted for being unabashedly just-let-go-mind-go-blank. Or perhaps it’s simply the ideal party movie for those who just can resist groaning and eyeball-rolling.

APRIL MOVIE THON 2: Koyaanisqatsi (1982)

April 27: Until You Call on the Dark — Pick a movie from the approved movies list of the Church of Satan. Here’s the list.

The first movie in Godfrey Reggio’s Qatsi trilogy — followed by Powaqqatsi and Naqoyqatsi — this combines Ron Fricke’s cinematography and Philip Glass’s score to create a feeling of zen or restlessness, depending on how it is viewed. There are no words as Reggio said, “…it’s not for lack of love of the language that these films have no words. It’s because, from my point of view, our language is in a state of vast humiliation. It no longer describes the world in which we live.” Instead, the Hopi word koyaanisqatsi is all we know, which means “life out of balance.”

Reggio and Fricke met when the director was working on a media campaign for the Institute for Regional Education and the American Civil Liberties Union. These ads were about how technology controls the world and invades our privacy. The TV spots were so popular people called stations to see when they would air again; it was also successful in that it got ritalin eliminated as a behavior controlling drug in New Mexico schools. Afterward, with just $40,000 left in his budget, Fricke told Reggio that they should make a film.

Shot with a mix of styles and media — 16mm, 35mm made with a 16 mm zoom lens shot onto 35 mm film with a zoom extender, time lapse photography, captured stills in New York’s Time Square with chemicals changing up the results, the New York traffic and congrestion time lapse work of cinematographer Hilary Harris and even images added of the Great Gallery at Horseshoe Canyon by Francis Ford Coppola, who became a champion of the movie —  Koyaanisqatsi is about giving you an experience. The director has even said that what the movie is about is up to you. It ends with these three prophecies:

  • “If we dig precious things from the land, we will invite disaster.”
  • “Near the day of Purification, there will be cobwebs spun back and forth in the sky.”
  • “A container of ashes might one day be thrown from the sky, which could burn the land and boil the oceans.”

In the Live Journal of Rev. Warlock DRACONIS BLACKTHORNE, he says of this work, “Koyaanisqatsi is certainly a Satanic meditation, which would prove beneficial after any interaction with the herd, a veritable “eye in the sky” – asserts the “larger picture”, as it were.”

The Church of Satan film list says, “Satanic elements include a misanthropic contempt for Humanity, the Command to Look, and The Balance Factor.”

The ultimate rejection of herd mentality lies within this film, as it invites you to create a meaning that only has one owner. You.

You can watch this on Tubi.

APRIL MOVIE THON 2: Hell Has No Boundary (1982)

April 14: Tiger Style — Grab a Shaw Brothers film and write about how great it is.

Cheng Jung (Derek Yee) and Wong Lai Fen (Leanne Liu) work at the same police station and start dating. One evening, as they camp on an island, she hears a strange noise and investigates, only to discover a strange green light. Somehow, she knows the island despite never being there and the light eventually knocks her out. When she wakes up, she attacks the kids near their camp with a fork and tries to drown one of them.

Yes, things aren’t normal.

May goes back to being a cop and is placed on a serial killer case by Inspector Wong (Hua Yueh). Somehow, May is able to not only catch the criminal, but shoot him with a bullet that reverse course after being fired, which leads reporter Koo (Ken Tong) to think she’s a superhero. Her new reckless attitude gets her taken off the case, but the two cops that replace her end up falling down an empty elevator shaft.

Everyone that ever was in May’s way must now pay. Like the horney superior who she takes disco dancing and then castrates with a crab. Yes, a crab. Or the holy man whose bird is destroyed and whose face is covered with boils before he’s launched down the strairs. Even an attempt at exorcizing May ends up with her drinking vomit from a toilet and sending a knife into the throat of her aunt.

The spirit that is inside her? Well, she died as a child after being sold to another serial killer, who smothered her with a pillow and then tore her insides out, at which point another completely different guy sold her dead body as goat meat.

Director Yang Chuan also made Hou wang da zhan tian bing tian jiang. If you haven’t seen that, well, get ready. This movie — like that one — is packed with bloody murder, insects, worms, slugs, neon lights and fog, death by toilet paper, nurses killed in showers, ghosts riding people in photographs…it packs in so much that by the end, you’ll be exhausted in the best of ways.

UNEARTHED FILMS BLU RAY RELEASE: Calamity of Snakes (1982)

April 11: Upsetting — What movie upsets you? Write about it and share it.

I think that I’m unshockable and then I watch something like Ren she da zhan and man, I had no idea what being shocked was.

Directed by Chi Chiang (who was also the choregrapher for Bruce Lee: The Man, the Myth and directed China Heat and Bruce Lee’s Deadly Kung Fu), who wrote it with Kang-Nien Li and Kuo Jung Tsai, this is a movie that people who hate snaked will be horrified by and those that love them will be destroyed by, so there’s really no one who won’t be brutalized by what these guys put together. I’m not exaggerating when I say that tens of thousands of snakes appear and also not making anything up when I tell you that just as many snakes are murdered on screen, for real, in a movie that looks at Cannibal Holocaust and scoffs, “People are mad that you killed a turtle? Here, hold my San Miguel.”

This Hong Kong/Taiwan film (there’s also a South Korean version called War Between Man and Snakes that has five more minutes and alternate footage filmed in that country) starts with real estate boss Francis Chang ordering his men to kill all the snakes around his new luxury apartment building. What follows is a near-mondo orgy of human-on-snake violence as snakes are chopped, sliced and smashed by excavators and dumped into huge snake graves. This is not CGI, so turn back now, because no one visited this set to see if a movie called Calamity of Snakes was snake-friendly. It’s kind of like all those Italian cannibal movies that show man’s inhumanity to man that were made by being inhumane to man, which seems like, you guessed it, a snake eating its own tail, which is about the only bit of snake violence this movie doesn’t have.

After all that, you’ll hardly be mad that this steals music from Maniac and the same cues as Dawn of the Dead. There’s also some Alan Parsons Project and Keith Emerson, because we all know progressive rock is prime snake murder music. Taking music is the least of this movie’s sins.

It does have snakes run over, destroyed by a mongoose, gassed, hit with rocks, sliced apart with swords and even a giant snake participates in a kung fu battle against a man who lives inside a box of snakes, even keeping one inside his mouth and the snake makes the same sound effects as Godzilla.

What does work is that snakes non-stop kill humans, showing up in bathtubs, when people are making love, when folks are playing mahjong, whenever people do, well, anything. Snakes will show up — the big snake might even be psychic — wherever people are trying to just live their lives, including a moment where they spill forth from an elevator in the exact same way that blood spills out in The Shining.

Footage from this movie was edited into The Serpent Warriors, a movie that stars Earth Kitt, Christopher Mitchum and was the last role for Clint Walker. It was also released in Pakistan as Revenge of the Snakes — thanks Daily Grindhouse — with artwork that rips off The Beyond and let me tell you, I can’t love that enough.

For all the meanness toward reptiles, this movie does not treat its humans any better, as there are numerous scenes of people covered by snakes, snakes are thrown at them, snakes are in their faces and at the end, someone does a burn stunt that in no way looks safe or something that someone survived.

Does it make you feel better that some of the snakes were eaten afterward and not wasted? Yeah, me neither. That said, good for Unearthed Films, who are giving a percentage of all profits from Calamity of the Snakes in all formats to Save the Snakes in continuation of their mission to protect snake populations around the world.

The Unearthed Films blu ray of Calamity of Snakes has the best looking version of this movie ever in three versions: theatrical release, cruelty-free and the absolutely uncensored version. It also has From Shaw To Snakes: The Venom And Violence Of Early Chinese Language Horror, an interview with Chui-Yi Chung and commentary from Nathan Hamilton and Brad Slaton. You can get this from MVD.

APRIL MOVIE THON 2: Android (1982)

April 5: Roger Corman’s birthday — Whether he produced or directed the movie, share a movie for Corman’s birthday.

Using pieces of past Roger Corman-produced science fiction films, Android had a team that believed in it so much that even when Corman said that it wasn’t exploitable, Barry Opper (brother of writer and actor Don, who is in this as the android Max 404) and producer Rupert Harvey bought the rights. It still didn’t really break through, but there you go.

After the Munich Rebellion, all androids on Earth were outlawed. That’s why Dr. Daniel (Klaus Kinski) has goen to space to work on Max 404, his young male android who is already getting too curious and insubordinate. He’s already working on the next level of AI called Cassandra One (Kendra Kirchner). Meanwhile, Max has allowed a prison transport filled with criminals in disguise — Maggie (Brie Howard-Darling, who was in the all-female band Fanny, which predate The Runaways), Keller (Norbert Weisser) and Mendes (Crofton Hardester) — which upsets Dr. Daniel, but once he sees Maggie, he allows them to stay.

There’s a love triangle here kind of, because Max is showing signs of Munich Syndrome and becoming anti-human and Dr. Daniel needs to sexually stimulate Maggie and add the details of her love life into Cassandra One. When the cops show up, Max destroys their ship and tells Maggie that he saved her. They start to make love before Mendes interrupts and Cassandra reveals that Max is also an android. Before you know it, Maggie has been killed and it’s a mystery as to who did it as more cops start to arrive at the space station.

This gets very twist and turn at the end and has a pretty great reveal. It’s not necessarily a great movie, as it tells more than it shows and is quite talky, but any movie where Klaus Kinski is coming on too strong to both human and robotic women is one that I’m going to like.

Director Aaron Lipstadt is still working in streaming TV and podcasts. He also directed City Limits and episodes of everything from Miami Vice to Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. This was written by Opper (Charlie from the Critters movies), James Regle (who was the set construction supervisor for Corman’s Forbidden World) and Will Regle.

APRIL MOVIE THON 2: Forbidden World (1982)

April 5: Roger Corman’s birthday — Whether he produced or directed the movie, share a movie for Corman’s birthday.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: When Frederick Burdsall isn’t at work or watching movies while covered in cats, you can find Fred in the front seat of Knoebels’ Phoenix. 

Earlier I offered a review of the Roger Corman-produced outer space shocker Galaxy of Terror, so for the final half of my salute to Roger I’m tackling my favorite Corman production: 1982’s Forbidden World, directed by Allan Holzman and starring Jesse Vint, June Chadwick and the spectacular Dawn Dunlap.

Bounty hunter Mike Colby (Vint) is called to Xarbia to check out Subject 20, which was created in hopes of curing a galaxy-wide food crisis. Too bad they didn’t explain that to Subject 20. After an opening segment with Colby awakening from cryo-sleep to fight off raiders, he receives orders to go to Xarbia where he is met by Doctor Hauser (Linden Chiles) and geneticist Barbara Glaser (Chadwick). They show him to the Biohazard chamber, where he sees the remains of various animals killed when Subject 20 got loose. It has now cocooned itself in the incubator and despite Colby’s insistence on destroying it, they convince him to sleep on it. While they go to dinner, Jimmy (Mike Bowen) is left to clean up the mess and after opening the incubator for a better look gets a face full of Subject 20 for his trouble (They never learn.).

At dinner it’s explained that their discovery, Proto B, can be spliced with anything to make it grow larger, but the scientists refuse to tell Colby what Subject 20 was before it got spliced. Meanwhile, Tracy Baxter (Dunlap) has now discovered what’s left of her boyfriend Jimmy. Doctor Cal Timbergen (played perfectly by Fox Harris) wheels off the body and everyone gets ready for bed (Apparently, they don’t care about the murderous creature running loose.).

While Barbara and Colby “get acquainted,” security chief Earl (Scott Paulin) has a close encounter with Subject 20. Early next morning, Tracy heads to the sauna (Thank You!) and is soon joined by Colby (She apparently wasn’t very bothered by the death of her boyfriend) and Subject 20, who escapes through the air shaft, forcing a search outside the ship. They discover an empty cocoon and head back to the research center, arriving in time to see the mutant head back into the shaft taking Hauser with him. Cal discovers that Jimmy is still alive, if only on a molecular level, and is being morphed into pure protein.

Once back inside, they learn the truth about Subject 20 and they figure out why they have been left alive until now. After a visit from a not quite dead Hauser, the girls hit the shower in a scene that would have gotten me through puberty if it had been made about 10 years earlier. They decide to communicate with it. Barbara has a nice quick chat via computer before being invited to dinner, and as the menfolk come running to the rescue, Cal discovers the solution to the problem. How many more have to die? Will ANYONE survive? Watch, enjoy and find out for yourself.

Not wanting to leave out anyone, I’ll also mention the film also starred Raymond Oliver as Brian. The opening sequence of the movie was shot just after Galaxy of Terror using that picture’s Quest set. The ever-thrifty Roger had rented the property until the weekend and still had a few days remaining, so he had the scene shot and added on to Forbidden World, even though the rest of it wasn’t filmed until about four months later. Gotta love it. They also used the skeleton of the giant maggot for the final shots of the film where you see the mutant barreling through the corridors chasing Tracy (Can’t say I blame him.).

In any event, this is pure cheesy sci-fi at it’s best. Chadwick was smoldering and Dunlap looks magnificent with or without clothes, but the star of this for me was Harris as Doctor Timbergen. He looked and sounded like the proverbial mad scientist and, even though I couldn’t name anything else he was in without looking it up, I will always remember him for this film. Great job. As for Dunlap, she would go on to make only a few more films before leaving the biz and heading back to Texas. Hope she’s doing well.

And as for the rest of you: watch out for missing test subjects and I’ll see you at Knoebels.

APRIL MOVIE THON 2: Girl With Gun (1982)

April 4: Remake, remix, ripoff — A shameless remake, remix or ripoff of a much better known movie. Allow your writing to travel the world (we recommend Italy or Turkey).

If you’re going to make a female revenge movie, you can’t get a better inspiration than Ms. 45. Except that this movie, directed by Yao-Chi Chen and written by Chia Lau isn’t just inspired, it’s literally the same movie — it’s by Taiwanese talent but set in Hong Kong — with some minor changes.

Hsia Yin is Liang Pi-Ho, a mute worker in the garment industry who is the Thana or this movie, but she has so much to live up to, as Zoë Tamerlis is perhaps one of the most untouchable actresses ever for connecting with a role and making you believe in it. Liang Pi-Ho has to deal with the same indignities, like street gangs accosting her and a photographer who keeps touching her and the man who comes into her apartment to defile her. She deals with things the same way, blasting them with dispassion. Yet Hong Kong doesn’t seem like the end of the world that Abel Ferrara showed off in his film. And when it gets really grisly, the movie deals with censorship by going to inversed white on black.

It also begins with news stories about attacks on the homeless and gives a backstory to Liang Pi-Ho, showing how she’s mute because of the death of her parents. The film also closes with her receiving treatment instead of her decimating a party while dressed as a nun, then being cut down and yelling, “Sister!” See — I somehow spoiled two movies at once.

According to Girls With Guns, Godfrey Ho — yes, you knew somehow he would get involved — released a Westernized version called American Commando 5: Fury in Red and Crackdown Mission that has some white faces and a Satanic cult randomly thrown in.

Also known as Fury In Red, this also has the landlady’s dog replaced with a cat who our heroine feeds parts of her first victim to as well as a nightclub scene with the Human League’s “Love Action” playing on the soundtrack. The Ocean Shores VCD version of the film also has the theme from Ghostbusters and Madonna’s “Like a Virgin” and I can promise you none of those songs were legally obtained.

In case you’re wondering, at no time does the lead dress as a nun, but the cop on the case does.

I learned about this movie from Ed Glaser, author of How the World Remade Hollywood, which you can buy from McFarland Books. Here’s a fun video he made about it.

JESS FRANCO MONTH: The Sinister Dr. Orloff (1982)

Dr. Orloff (as usual played by Howard Vernon) is a central villain in the Jess Franco Cinematic Universe. Here, he’s given up on resurrecting his daughter Melissa (Rocío Freixas), who lies frozen in time in the basement. Her son Alfred (Antonio Mayans) has not stopped and is doing things in the Orloff way, which means using his assistant Andros (Rafael Cayetano) to kill sex workers until they can find the one soul that can be reincarnated inside Melissa. He’s also being tracked by Inspector Tanner (Antonio Rebollo) who wants to finally catch an Orloff and end this cycle of death. Also, this being a Jess Franco movie, both Orloff’s either want to own or make love to Melissa.

What works here is that Franco decides to follow Maniac and have the younger Orloff obsessed with the women who walk the streets and sin while his sainted mother lies in state.

If you’ve watched The Awful Dr. Orloff, The Mistresses of Dr. Jekyll, The Diabolical Dr. Z and The Sinister Eyes of Dr. Orloff — and the Orloff film that follows this Faceless — as well as other Vernon-acted non-Franco Orloff films like The Invisible Dead and Only A Coffin, you’ll be surprised that Vernon’s character has started to realize that perhaps all this murdering has led to a life of horror instead one of scientific experimentation. That isn’t going to stop him from being a monster but he’s gradually starting to undergo some character growth if only his son wasn’t whipping women and trying to put their souls into his mother so he could cuck his father through an act of infernal incesticide.

Man, Jess Franco will lead you down some wild paths, right?