Category: Spectober

SPECTACLE SHRIEK SHOW VI

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SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29 – ALL DAY!

Crunch a leaf, smash a pumpkin, key a car! The time is at hand. Tricks, treats, and everything in between – the 6th (!!!) Annual (!!!) SPECTACLE SHRIEK SHOW is upon us! Post up for 12ish (probably 14) hours of cerebellum boiling insanity with your favorite Spectaghouls. This year we have the premiere of Appalachian satanists, perilous board games, some rare and secret archival prints from Radical Hardware, as well as the usual who’s who of fiendish friends, shorts, songs, and surprises. After five years strong of marathons this one is truly one for the books. Don’t miss out! As always, $25 for the day or $5 each film.

NOON: THE SCREAMING SKULL
2PM: Camp Motion Pictures presents SPLATTER FARM
4PM: Junk Food Dinner presents BEYOND THE GATES
6PM: Radical Hardware presents SPARE THE ROD…
8PM: DON’T LET THE DEVIL IN
10PM: Vinegar Syndrome presents HORROR HOUSE ON HIGHWAY 5
MIDNIGHT: Massacre Video presents WOMEN’S FLESH: MY RED GUTS

GET YOUR TICKETS!

tss_bannerTHE SCREAMING SKULL
dir. Alex Nicol, 1958
68 min, USA
In English


Newlyweds Eric and Jenni decide it’s a good idea to move back to the mansion where Eric’s first wife died under mysterious circumstances. Luckily for the couple, the grounds have been maintained by an old family friend – Mickey (director Alex Nichol) the gardener. After settling in, the already mentally exhausted Jenni begins hearing bumps/screams in the night. Is the ghost of Marianne come back to seek revenge? Is it her jerky new husband gaslighting her? Some combination of both? Hard to say, we think you can guess though. Fun fact: when the film was first released director Nichol promised a free burial to anyone who died of fright during the climax of the film.


sf_bannerCamp Motion Pictures presents: SPLATTER FARM
dir. John & Mark Polonia, 1987
70 min, USA
In English

Special thanks to Mark Polonia!


Two twin brothers (played by the filmmakers, as they are wont to do) visit their aunt at her farm seated deep in beautiful rural Pennsylvania. While they think they’ll simply be honing their green thumbs and helping their dear old auntie, things take a harrowing turn. Can you believe it? Terrible acts abound, folks are turning up missing (or worse!), and it’s revealed their aunt’s farmhand has a very disturbing set of extra-curricular activities.

The Polonia Brothers hold a special place in the hearts of us here at Spectacle. Having had a blast with FEEDERS once upon a midnight, we at the Shriek Show are honored to be blessed with showing this slab of analog insanity to an audience hungry for tape hiss and mini-Butterfingers especially hot on the heels of Mark Polonia’s new work. As always, many thanks to Camp Motion Pictures who have been down with the burning S since forever.


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Junk Food Dinner presents: BEYOND THE GATES
dir. Jackson Stewart, 2016
84 minutes, USA
In English

Special thanks to Jackson Stewart!

Two estranged brothers reunite at their missing father’s video store to liquidate the property and sell off his assets. As they dig through the store, they find a VCR board game dubbed ‘Beyond The Gates’ that holds a connection to their father’s disappearance and deadly consequences for anyone who plays it.

Cult film podcast juggernauts Junk Food Dinner (who provided commentary for the upcoming blu-ray release) and filmmaker Jackson Stewart bring a loving tribute to the evil’s of VHS and tabletop gaming to Spectacle for a special Halloween treat. Barbara Crampton (FROM BEYOND) stars alongside Chase Willamson (THE GUEST) and Brea Grant (HALLOWEEN II) in a flick certain to make you reconsider picking up the dice ever again. Also, we’ll be giving away a copy of NIGHTMARE (The Video Board Game) to a lucky audience member so you can experience the terror at home or maybe a motel that still has a VCR in it but no continental breakfast.


str_bannerRadical Hardware presents: SPARE THE ROD… (Secret 16mm!)
dir. Robert Enrico / Don Weis, 1964 / 1963
60 min, France / USA
In English

Oooooooh baby. It’s about six o’clock. The 6th annual Shriek Show is rolling right along and we are in the ZONE! The sun is setting, it’s TWILIGHT! Man it’s almost like we’re in some sort of TWILIGHT ZONE. Like you’re so comfy in your seat and you hear the soothing whir of a projector as it fires up. Yeah that’s the stuff. It’s almost like Radical Hardware is coming through the velvet curtains and screening not one but two pristine 16mm archival prints of a beloved and game-changing show from almost 55 years ago. Crazy right? Like maybe you’d be watching two works written by genre masters Richard Matheson and Ambrose Bierce. Is it an illusion? Is it a secret screening? Is it the first time in Shriek Show history we’ve had the 16mm projector out? Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.


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DON’T LET THE DEVIL IN (NY Premiere!)
dir. Courtney Fathom Sell, 2016
80 min, USA
In English

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAr9eiiSqf0)

After suffering a miscarriage, Newlyweds John and Samantha Harris relocate from New York City to a small Appalachian town where they become wrapped up in a nightmarish tapestry of evil.

Sell’s film eschews conventional genre and instead hops gleefully around – owing as much to the backwoods horrors of last years standout MIDNIGHT as it does to Satanic Panic mainstays like ROSEMARY’S BABY. Aided by the rolling hills and picturesque backdrop of rural West Virginia, the film lures the viewer into an expansive wilderness and then manages to trap you in it. Also featuring Ed Wood/Mark Pirro player Conrad Brooks!


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Vinegar Syndrome presents HORROR HOUSE ON HIGHWAY 5 (New restoration!)
Dir. Richard Casey, 1985
87 minutes, USA
In English

A mysterious killer, wearing a Nixon mask, terrorizes and murders a young couple. A professor assigns his students a project investigating the strange events connected to a possibly dead Nazi scientist, Dr. Fredrick Bartholomew. The doctor’s assistant kidnaps students, holding them hostage and torturing them. Meanwhile, Nixon stalks the night!

One of the most confusing and compelling homemade horror films ever made, future music video director Richard Casey’s debut feature film, shot over years on nights and weekends, is a delirious collage of oddball gore, ludicrous plot twists, and a general milieu of weirdness unlike anything else in cinema history. Newly restored from original 16mm vault elements by the almighty Vinegar Syndrome, HORROR HOUSE ON HIGHWAY 5 finally gets the treatment it so richly deserves. A head-scratcher of this magnitude hasn’t graced the Shriek Show screen since…well, probably last year!


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Massacre Video presents WOMEN’S FLESH: MY RED GUTS
Dir. Tomakichi Anaru, 1999
54 min, Japan
In Japanese

Director Tomakichi Anaru made a splash with his first feature and foray into the field of extreme cinema – TUMBLING DOLL OF FLESH, a pseudo-snuff nightmare – but WOMEN’S FLESH: MY RED GUTS is more of a slice of life. Like we’re seeing something we’re not supposed to see. Finger eating, tongue slicing, dismal bathroom lighting, and flashbacks flicker across the screen while you squirm in your seats. Massacre Video (a Shriek Show/Spectacle mainstay) has never been one to shy away from rare and often shocking titles – MONDO MAGIC, THE ABOMINATION, and 555, all come to mind – but this is one for the books.

Closing out this years marathon with easily one of the most grizzly entries to date, this is not for the faint of heart – consider yourself warned.


SPECTOBER V

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For the fifth year, Spectacle is proud to present a month-long, lovingly-selected series of unknown, mysterious, and shocking films from around the world. This time around includes surreal French slasher reductions, American gore classics, Yugoslavian political repression murder sprees, and a rare full cut of insanity from Mexico’s Panic movement.


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DARK WATERS (TEMNYE VODY)
Dir. Mariano Baino, 1993.
UK/Russia, 94 minutes.
English.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 3 – 7:30PM
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 13 – 7:30PM *Special Introduction by Coralina Cataldi-Tassoni*
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 25 – 10:00PM

GET YOUR TICKETS!

DARK WATERS is the recipient of the Prix Du Public at Montreal’s Fantasia Film Festival and the Vincent Price Award at Rome’s Fantafestival and has been hailed as a “masterpiece of arthouse horror” by Filmmaker Magazine’s Scott Macauley and an “unholy hybrid of Bergman and Argento” by Film Review magazine.

Young Englishwoman Elizabeth travels to an ascetic convent on an isolated Eastern European island to settle the affairs of her late father, against his last wishes.  Confined by the sea and chambers of the convent, and under the ireful scrutiny of the sisters, Elizabeth experiences disorienting visions of a horror she can not recall.  Director Mariano Baino shot the footage for DARK WATERS in Ukraine just after the Soviet Union’s dissolution.  The rich cinematography and gorgeous location add to the eeriness of this Lovecraft-adjacent horror story.

Join us Thursday October 13 at 7:30pm for a special screening of DARK WATERS, introduced by actress and multi-talented artist Coralina Cataldi-Tassoni, star of director Mariano Baino’s latest short LADY M 5.1 as well as his upcoming feature, ASTRID’S SAINTS, which Baino and Cataldi-Tassoni co-wrote.  Cataldi-Tassoni is known for her work in seminal European films such as Dario Argento’s Opera, Phantom of The Opera, Mother Of Tears and for her starring debut as Sally Day in Lamberto Bava’s Demons 2. Cataldi-Tassoni is also an accomplished painter, singer and musician, and her work can be viewed here.


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MADELEINE, STUDY OF A NIGHTMARE
Dir. Roberto Mauri, 1974.
Italy, 110 min.

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 2 – 5:00PM
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 12 – 10:00PM
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 22 – 5:00PM

GET YOUR TICKETS!

Given that writer/director Roberto Mauri’s best known for schlock like THE PORNO KILLERS and CURSE OF THE BLOOD GHOULS, the sustained unease of MADELEINE’s sun-soaked scenes seems happy coincidence rather than intentional. Similar to LE ORME, MADELEINE creates a palpable sense of dread and mystery by delaying an inevitable confrontation with reality (before throwing it away with a boiler plate twist ending). Camille Keaton’s laisse faire acting style works to the advantage of a story about a woman unable to directly acknowledge deep personal trauma, but trying to; her efforts mostly take the form of swanning around a gorgeous Italian villa seducing one man after another (if this is a nightmare, sign me up). And yet, the increasing sense her will is not her own, that her mysterious husband/lover/benefactor isn’t acting benevolently, that her very self is slipping away, turns what could have been mere softcore into a haunting look at a woman struggling with her own id and losing.


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SCREAM BLOODY MURDER
Dir. Marc B. Ray, 1973
USA, 90 Minutes

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 1 – MIDNIGHT
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 14 – MIDNIGHT
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 22 – MIDNIGHT

GET YOUR TICKETS!

A troubled young man with a hook for a hand (he lost it as a boy while killing his father with a tractor) and a serious aversion to sex murders anyone who gets in the way of his love for a prostitute in this grimy slasher flick from 1973.  Much in the vein of films like “The Witch Who Came From the Sea” and “Criminally Insane,” “Scream Bloody Murder” seems to have crawled directly from the gutter, (though actually it was made by the writers of Ann-Margret and Raquel Welch TV specials) with a warped internal logic that effectively drags you into it’s bleak, blood-drenched world.  From the creators of “The Severed Arm.”


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LA MANSION DE LA LOCURA (THE MANSION OF MADNESS)
Dir. Juan López Moctezuma
Mexico, 99 min.
In English (originally shot in English, dubbed into Spanish)

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 15 – 5:00PM
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 21 – 10:00PM
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 26 – 10:00PM

GET YOUR TICKETS!

“Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.”
Beginning with Poe’s story The System Of Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether, in which a reporter visits an asylum to discover the system by which the insane and the caregivers has become a bit muddled, we enter into a place where political satire and surrealist horror blend into a truly astonishing film, where a man becomes a chicken, the body becomes a musical instrument, and nothing is ever as it seems. Director Juan Lopez Moctezuma (ALUCARDA, MARY MARY BLOODY MARY), a member of Mexico’s Panic movement alongside Alejandro Jodorowski and Fernando Arrabal: the three having worked together on FANDO Y LIS, which should give you some idea of what you’re in for. Led by the great Claudio Brook (CRONOS, THE EXTERMINATING ANGEL) as the mad Dr. Maillard (as well as Raoul Fragonard), the film is as a dream, a ritual, a series of living tableaux. Describing the plot would be to cheapen the film, but it’s worth noting no less than Leonora Carrington served as art director. We are honored to present this film in its longest known cut, with the original English dialogue, miles from public domain cuts. Those expecting cheap horror will be disappointed; those expecting clarity will be confused, those with eyes to see will behold a revelation.


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FOLIES MEURTRIERES
Dir. Antoine Pellissier, 1984
France, 47 min.

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 5 – 7:30PM
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28 – 10:00PM
MONDAY, OCTOBER 31 – 10:00PM

GET YOUR TICKETS!

The slasher film, like any genre, has various approaches. From the baroque excess of its giallo roots to the meta-awareness of the Scream series, from scuzzy video nasties like The Toolbox Murders and Don’t Answer The Phone! to the satirical aspects of The Slumber Party Massacre, there’s a variation for any taste, so long as your tastes lead to seeing people get killed. It can also be stripped down to its most minimal elements: 80s synth dirge, long POV shots and gruesome set piece murders. That’s what FOLIES MEURTRIERES provides: the slasher boiled down to a kind of dead-eyed late-night trance, all VHS tape hiss and HG Lewis-style gore effects and zero relateable character development or or wisecracking comic relief. Anyone looking for a well-written mimetically plausible story won’t find it here: this is homemade murderdrone haze. Information on this film is sparse, which may be for the best; it’s a film that you might pick up from a box of unmarked VHS tapes on a streetcorner only to discover diseased dreams of torment and bloodshed stained onto magnetic tape. We will say director Antione Pellissier’s day job is medical examiner, which is fitting for a film far closer to Grand Guignol than the action-film-jump-scare world of contemporary horror.

“The woozy, warped tape of Folies Meurtrieres has no subtitles. That’s okay, as there are maybe five lines in the film that aren’t a narrator reading off the date of the murder you are about to see. The 47 minute film is just that: a series of murders without context or plot, and within each murder sequence lies a different variation on the classic slasher scenario.” -Peter Galvin, MURDERDRONE


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THE APE WOMAN
(aka LA DONNA SCIMMIA)
Dir. Marco Ferreri, 1964
Italy/France, 100 min.

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6 – 7:30PM
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 18 – 10:00PM
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 23 – 5:00PM

GET YOUR TICKETS!

By means of disclosure: THE APE WOMAN is not a scary movie per se, but rather a withering satire of masculinist culture, the apparatus of “freak show” exploitation, and the tacit racisms of the so-called Western World. (Who would expect anything less from Italian auteur Marco “DILLINGER IS DEAD” Ferreri?) Annie Giradot stars as the nominal donna scimmia Marie, a beautiful young woman suffering a rare condition that covers her body with long, thick hair – based on the real-life case of Julia Pastrana, whose hypertrichosis terminalis left her resembling a cross between simian and human. She comes under the thumb of an opportunistic lout played by Ugo Tognazzi, who begins to make big plans for the two of them – showing Marie off, concocting bogus tales about her discovery “in Africa”, training her to whoop and holler for the audience.

Via Marie’s prolonged expectations and unfulfilled hopes, a tender and devastating parable ensues, a study in gender relations (to say nothing of the Italian Catholic church) and the politics of what is/isn’t “scary” according to 20th century showmanship. THE APE WOMAN still has plenty to say, and fits alongside THE SEED OF MAN and BYE BYE MONKEY as one of Ferreri’s blistering works that’s long overdue for reevaluation.

“The only redeeming feature of this oddly distasteful film is the fact that a certain haunting pathos does emerge from it.….It is evident that the censors have used their shears on this film. The producer should have beat them to it. He should have used shaving cream.” – Bosley Crowther, The New York Times

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DÉJÀ VU (VEC VIDJENO)
Dir. Goran Markovic, 1987
Yugoslavia, 102 min.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 3 – 10:00PM
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 18 – 7:30PM
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 30 – 5:00PM

GET YOUR TICKETS!

Déjà vu concerns a troubled piano teacher, Mihailo (Mustafa Nadarevic), and his efforts to come to terms with reality through a love affair with a poor but industrious girl, Olgica (Anica Dobra). When she dumps him for a younger boyfriend (hoping to make a political career in the Communist Youth organization), Mihailo is overrun by the ghosts of his past and begins a killing spree. Flashbacks which explain the killer’s motivation are intrinsic to the film’s central idea. The apparent contrast between the past and the present becomes a parallel, thanks to the clever transitions between shots. Mihailo becomes unable to distinguish the ‘reflections’ of the past upon his own present, and is thus driven over the edge.

Written by Ghoul via IMDB

FOLIES MEURTRIERES

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FOLIES MEURTRIERES
Dir. Antoine Pellissier, 1984
France, 47 min.

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 5 – 7:30PM
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28 – 10PM
MONDAY, OCTOBER 31 – 10PM

GET YOUR TICKETS!

The slasher film, like any genre, has various approaches. From the baroque excess of its giallo roots to the meta-awareness of the Scream series, from scuzzy video nasties like The Toolbox Murders and Don’t Answer The Phone! to the satirical aspects of The Slumber Party Massacre, there’s a variation for any taste, so long as your tastes lead to seeing people get killed. It can also be stripped down to its most minimal elements: 80s synth dirge, long POV shots and gruesome set piece murders. That’s what FOLIES MEURTRIERES provides: the slasher boiled down to a kind of dead-eyed late-night trance, all VHS tape hiss and HG Lewis-style gore effects and zero relateable character development or or wisecracking comic relief. Anyone looking for a well-written mimetically plausible story won’t find it here: this is homemade murderdrone haze. Information on this film is sparse, which may be for the best; it’s a film that you might pick up from a box of unmarked VHS tapes on a streetcorner only to discover diseased dreams of torment and bloodshed stained onto magnetic tape. We will say director Antione Pellissier’s day job is medical examiner, which is fitting for a film far closer to Grand Guignol than the action-film-jump-scare world of contemporary horror.

“The woozy, warped tape of Folies Meurtrieres has no subtitles. That’s okay, as there are maybe five lines in the film that aren’t a narrator reading off the date of the murder you are about to see. The 47 minute film is just that: a series of murders without context or plot, and within each murder sequence lies a different variation on the classic slasher scenario.” -Peter Galvin, MURDERDRONE

BORO IN THE BOX

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BORO IN THE BOX
Dir. Bertrand Mandico, 2011.
France. 40 min.
In French with English subs.

LIVING STILL LIFE
Dir. Bertrand Mandico, 2012.
France/Belgium/Germany. 15 min.
In French with English subs.

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 9 – 7:30PM
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 20 – 10PM
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29 – 7:30PM

GET YOUR TICKETS!

Bertrand Mandico might be one of the last great surrealist filmmakers in operation. His films occupy a unique area of the fantastic uncanny, where babies may be born encased in wooden crates, and artificial natural environments erupt into the colors and signs of deepest dreams. But the look and feel of his world is all his own. His “Incoherence Manifesto” sheds some light on a methodology which favors all manner of the unnatural and anti-real, along with all in-camera effects shot on expired film stock and a refusal of the cinematographic rationality of narrative and genre. And yet his films are far from abstract or storyless. Instead, they tell entrancing stories of twilight lives spent in pursuit of macabre marvels.

BORO IN THE BOX is Mandico’s ostensible biopic of Polish animator-turned-eroticist Walerian Borowczyk. But where we might expect a biopic to dramatize the rough facts of a life, Mandico’s, instead, seems to express only the seething subconscious of Borowczyk’s speculative formative experiences and artistic impulses. The results may be the only biography that’s truly up to a filmmaker as singular as Borowczyk: an alphabetical series of phantasmagoric tableaux on the voyeurism of film, psychosexually-fraught familial relationships, and the struggle to create. O, of course, is for Obscene, but that doesn’t even begin to cover it.

The film will be accompanied by one of Mandico’s finest shorts to date, LIVING STILL LIFE, also taking on the story of an idiosyncratic artist. Frequent collaborator Elina Lowensohn (who also plays Borowczyk’s mother) appears as an outsider animator who uses her art to briefly resurrect dead animals recovered from a virulently-colorful wilderness of autumnal decay. Like BORO, the film follows a determined structure, a progressive increase in stakes as she pursues larger and more serious subjects. Meanwhile, a stranger looks on, awaiting the moment to precipitate a haunting final act.

SPECTACLE SHRIEK SHOW V

For the fifth year in a row, Spectacle is proud to present our 12ish hour horror marathon – The Spectacle Shriek Show. Throughout October midnight screenings have paid tribute to presenters from the last five years and this years line up is one of the most diverse yet. We’ve got 60’s spectral horror, German gut-munchers, made for TV Frankensteins, Mexican Satanists, cannibals who talk to their fish, dark Easter rituals, and surreal Italian brain-liquifiers.

Settle in for a full day of terror that you “can’t” escape! As always it’s $25 for the full day or $5 per film.

NOON – THE GHOST a.k.a. Lo Spettro
1:30 PM – ANTHROPOPHAGUS 2000 presented by Massacre Video
3:00 PM – DEAD MEAT presented by Horror Boobs & Wild Eye
5:00 PM – FRANKENSTEIN (I SWEAR ON MY MOTHER’S EYES) THE TRUE STORY presented by Lunchmeat VHS Fanzine
7:30 PM – John Russo’s MIDNIGHT
10:00 PM – GRAVE ROBBERS a.k.a. Ladrones de Tumbas
MIDNIGHT – Cosmotropia De Xam’s INFERNO VENEZIANO presented by Negative Pleasure & Phantasma Disques


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THE GHOST
A.k.a. Lo Spettro
Dir. Riccardo Freda, 1963
Italy, 97 min.

Spectacle marathon and midnight mainstay Barbara Steele and her giant eyes return for another tale of deceit, deception, and MURDER MOST FOUL! Steele plays Margaret Hichcock (no “T”) the wife of the wheelchair bound Dr. Hichcock. Not content to wait around for her husband to die of natural causes, Margaret and her lover decide to take matters into their own hands. Before his body is even cold, strange events befall the mansion and the two adulterers are shaken to their very core! Has Dr. Hichcock returned from the grave to reap a horrible vengeance? (Kind of!) Is this gothic tale of madness and betrayal the perfect kickoff to this years festivities? (YES.) A harkening back to last year’s opening screening of NIGHTMARE CASTLE, this one sets the mood/doom for the rest of your day.


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ANTHROPOPHAGOUS 2000 presented by Massacre Video
Dir. Andreas Schnaas, 1999
Germany, 80 min.
In German with English subtitles.

Massacre has been going five years strong (555, DEMON QUEEN, THE ABOMINATION, MONDO MAGIC) as presenters in the Shriek Show and this years entry is…something else.

Nikos and his family are trapped during a heavy story in a boat, leading to the unfortunate death of their daughter Vicky. Nikos becomes mad with the desire to survive, and he begins to kill and eat his own wife. Nikos manages to reach the shore of a small island, but his appetite for human flesh has consumed him. A group of young people on vacation have an unfortunate meeting with Niko. Will these youngsters make it out alive? (No.)

Massacre Video proudly presents, ANTHROPOPHAGOUS 2000, from the German Splatter master Andreas Schnaas (of the VIOLENT SHIT series), fully uncut for the first time ever in America!


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DEAD MEAT presented by Horror Boobs & Wild Eye
Dir. Tom Vollmann, 1993
USA, 107 min.

A true VHS rarity from the early 90’s DEAD MEAT was heavily bootlegged so it must be good, right? RIGHT. Think of all the classic characters from this slab of analog insanity – Sgt. John “Mo” Mentum, First Victim, Pizza Boy, and the rest! Basically a serial killer named The Senses Taker (guess what he takes from his victims) is running amok and these cops HATE it!

Filled to the brim with great gore, angry stock police characters, VERY long chase scenes, and a lot of scenes of a truly insane person talking to their pet fish this is a rare treat. Horror Boobs and Wild Eye will be officially releasing this lost clas-sick and we’ve got the premiere!


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FRANKENSTEIN (I SWEAR ON MY MOTHER’S EYES) THE TRUE STORY presented by Lunchmeat VHS Fanzine
Dir. Gary Cohen, 1983
USA, 90 min.

The hoots and howls of Halloween excitement are nearly in full swing as our favorite holiday fast approaches, Tapeheads, and in order to ring in the radical rewind VHSpirit right this Halloween, Lunchmeat has been keeping busy in the kitchen cooking up a super-sweet VHS treat for all the voracious Videovores out there. So, without any further analog ado, we proudly present some of the most exciting fresh VHS news of the season: Lunchmeat is absolutely elated to announce the unprecedented home video release of the ultra-obscure, shot-on-video, made-for-cable production FRANKENSTEIN (I SWEAR ON MY MOTHER’S EYES) THE TRUE STORY!

We’ve teamed up with the great Gary Cohen, director of cult SOV classics VIDEO VIOLENCE 1 & 2 to unearth this long lost slice of shot-on-video horror comedy insanity. Gary co-writes and stars in this utterly unknown film that debuted on Cablevision on Halloween night in 1983, and after a single airing, has since fell into complete obscurity. And now, over 30 years later, Lunchmeat is bringing this never-before-seen low-budget trashterpiece take on the classic tale of Frankenstein back from the grave!

The print used for the release comes directly from Gary’s archives (the only known surviving print!), keeping intact all of the grit and grain of the original analog-shot broadcast. The release will also include a video intro from Josh Schafer (yours truly!) talking about the inception of the release, and an exclusive intro from star and co-writer Gary Cohen, explaining how the production came to be, and why it’s been obscured for all these years. Here’s an excerpt from that intro with Gary Cohen, just to give you a little taste of history on this flick:

“I must admit, this whole project is shrouded in secrecy… at the time, what is now Comcast, I believe it was Cablevision back then… had a studio in New Jersey, and they were advertising, I think, for people who wanted to do some kind of cable access shows… my friend Richard Dominick (of Jerry Springer fame) decided he would pitch a project for Halloween, and write this version of Frankenstein. We got together, he wrote a script about Frankenstein, and we used a lot of the actors who you’ll recognize from Video Violence, who were all a part of Celebration Playhouse, this theater group in New Jersey. I believe we had about a day to film this thing, filmed on video, on three and a quarter inch video… and if memory serves, we were high or drunk or something when we we’re doing it… Once it aired, everybody disavowed any knowledge of the project. It is truly unique; it’s an oddity. I can’t believe here in 2015, it’s resurfaced, but so be it! I hope you get a kick out of it.” –Gary Cohen


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MIDNIGHT
Dir. John Russo, 1982
USA, 91 min.

Special thanks to John Russo.

We’re just gonna go ahead and say that if you only see one movie in this marathon (like an idiot)–make it MIDNIGHT.

A teenager runs away from home after her pervo cop stepdad (Laurence Tierney) puts the moves on her. She’s California bound when she meets up with two fellow travelers. Things go from pretty much ok to outright horrible when they stop in a small town and run into a family of Satanists who keep their dead mother in the attic. The paranoia is thick enough to cut with a knife (like a number of throats in the film) and no one is safe as the days run on to that most unholy of holidays – Easter. Cynthia looks great and has a pentagram on her forehead and there’s a lot of blood drinking and people in cages. Also some other truly sadistic and harrowing shit goes down. The film is based on Russo’s novel of the same name and was followed by a sequel–MIDNIGHT 2–many moons later. DO NOT MISS THIS ONE.


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GRAVE ROBBERS
A.k.a. Ladrones de Tumbas
Dir. Rubén Galindo Jr., 1990
Mexico, 87 min.
In Spanish with English subtitles.

Directed by Rubén Galindo Jr. who also made the unbelievable DON’T PANIC, GRAVE ROBBERS concerns a bunch of dumb teens who mess around in a graveyard and summon Satan and get their just desserts. Rather than prattle on about it, it’s probably best to let the copy from the back of the Mexican VHS tell the tale:

“LADRONES DE TUMBAS–It’s about four young boys who pretend to assault the tombs in the cemetery of a small town. But these boys were not aware that this place was surrounded by a strange evil force.

LADRONES DE TUMBAS–will take you to the unknown world of the evil where no human being has ever been able to escape! This time be prepared for the most exciting and violent film. Starring the best actors.”

The ultimate penultimate film for this years Shriek Show in the perfect sandwich between MIDNIGHT and INFERNO VENEZIANO.


INFERNO VENEZIANO presented by Negative Pleasure & Phantasma Disques
A.k.a. Hell of Venice
Dir. Cosmotropia de Xam, 2015
Italy, 65 min.

Negative Pleasure & Phantasma Disques team up to end our marathon with a bang presenting the third part of the ANIMA PERSA trilogy from Cosmotropia de Xam. Waaaaaaaaay back in 2011 Spectacle screened a midnight double feature of ACiD and INAUGURATION OF SNOW WHITE. Negative Pleasure has been killing it lately with double and triple features to coincide with comic releases (FELONY COMICS CRIME SPREE, etc) and this will be a sweet goodnight kiss to wrap up Shriek Show V!

Scientists vanishing and mutating to Zombies. A door to another dimension. A blind woman who keeps a secret. Mysterious surreal connections that prepare an Inferno for the city of gondolas.

SPECTOBER MIDNIGHTS

FRIDAY, SPECTOBER 2: 555
SATURDAY, SPECTOBER 3: WILD SIDE

FRIDAY, SPECTOBER 9: THE UNDERTAKER AND HIS PALS
SATURDAY, SPECTOBER 10: BALLET DOWN THE HIGHWAY

FRIDAY, SPECTOBER 16: HEADLESS EYES
SATURDAY, SPECTOBER 17: THE NIGHT BEFORE

FRIDAY, SPECTOBER 23: MARLEY’S REVENGE: THE MONSTER MOVIE
SATURDAY, SPECTOBER 24: FIFTH ANNUAL SPECTACLE SHRIEK SHOW

FRIDAY, SPECTOBER 30: TROUBLE EVERY DAY
SATURDAY, SPECTOBER 31: COMING SOON


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Massacre Video presents: 555
Dir. Wally Koz, 1988.
90 min, USA.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 2 – MIDNIGHT

From The First Annual Spectacle Shriek Show. (2011)

A hippie killer with a sex-fueled, murderous bloodlust is on a rampage and he’s brutally murdering innocent young couples! A nationwide trend of killings with the same m.o. happens to catch the eyes of Detective Haller and Sergeant Connor. Every five years, within five days of each other, the killer strikes! Now it’s up to Haller and Connor to find out who is behind these grisly murders. Who is this crazed, blood thirsty hippie? And more importantly, what is the significance of the third ‘five’?

Written by Roy Koz and directed by Wally Koz, this rare SOV splatter-classic has recently been given the royal treatment by Massacre Video with a DVD, special edition DVD, and an already eBay fodder clamshell.


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WILD SIDE
Dir. Donald Cammell, 1995.
U.S., 110 min. (Director’s cut); 95 min. (Nu Image re-edit)

Nu Image Re-edit
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 3 – MIDNIGHT

Director’s Cut
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 3 – 10:00 PM
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 16 – 7:30 PM
MONDAY, OCTOBER 26 – 7:30 PM

Donald Cammell’s fourth film in as many decades, the brilliant and berserk WILD SIDE is a beyond-salacious slab of psycho-noir starring Anne Heche as “Alex”, a Long Beach investment banker-cum sex worker for the rich and powerful. Tonight, that means Bruno – a shadowy millionaire money launderer (Christopher Walken, plus wig) – and perhaps also his valet, a sleazy undercover cop by the name of Tony (Steven Hauer, of Scarface fame). Cammell’s signature refracted narrative comes into play when Alex meets Bruno’s wife Virginia (Joan Chen), up-turning audience expectations for late-nite sleaze into a surprisingly tender, psychologically astute, and crushingly desperate queer love story. (There’s also a sublime Ryuichi Sakamoto score, and a concurrent subplot about a virus on a floppy disk that, if it fell into the wrong hands, would bring the western world to its knees.)

After Nu Image Productions wrested control of WILD SIDE away from Cammell and recut the film into the schizoid quasi-porn they thought they had paid for, the filmmaker saw fit to take his own life. In 2000, Kong supervised a painstaking, posthumous recut with editor Frank Mazzola; this October, Spectacle is thrilled to present both the damned and saved versions of WILD SIDE.

“Games are again played with power and identity, dangerous games but not fatal ones this time; if there is one difference between the Cammell of 1968 and of 1995 that stands out above all others, it is the replacement of Artaudian cruelty with an affectionate generosity towards his characters.” – Maximilian Le Cain, Senses of Cinema

“When this film was premiered at last year’s Edinburgh Festival, it was accompanied by a remarkable on-stage talk from Mazzola and Kong, who were able to show extracts from the butchered, and utterly different ‘TV version’: furnishing us with an unmissable masterclass in the realities of film editing and a radical essay in the textual aspects of cinema. I hope that Mr Mazzola and Ms Kong can be persuaded to repeat this lecture all over the country.” – Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian


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Lunchmeat VHS Fanzine presents: THE UNDERTAKER AND HIS PALS
Dir. T.L.P. Swicegood, 1966.
63 min, USA.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 9 – MIDNIGHT

From The Spectacle Shriek Show II. (2012)

Two degenerate café owners cook up a depraved alliance with a demented Undertaker and run amok through town on their motorcycles, hacking up hot dames and cleaving craniums. Select portions of the corpses are served up as daily specials at the café and The Undertaker gets to bury the leftovers. But when a pair of local detectives smell something fishy afoot, the trio’s reign of terror runs into some trouble.

One of Lunchmeat Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Josh Schafer’s all-time favorite flicks, this pioneering pitch black comedy is a kitschy slice of pure drive-in delirium that plants its tongue firmly in cheek, then bites it off and spits it out onto a sizzling hot plate ready for you to enjoy. Once you’ve ingested the wacky slab o’ cinema cheeze that is THE UNDERTAKER AND HIS PALS, you’ll never get the taste out of your mouth!

Dig it!


BALLET DOWN THE HIGHWAY
Dir. Jack Deveau
USA, 93 min, 1975

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 10 – MIDNIGHT
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 14 – 10:00 PM
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 20 – 7:30 PM

Opposites attract when a New York ballet dancer’s car breaks down on the highway and he is rescued by a closeted truck driver. An ambivalent romance blossoms until he finds the city apartment he shares with his boyfriend, a fellow dancer, filled with horny truckers. Filled with sadness and unrequited longing, BALLET DOWN THE HIGHWAY is directed by Jack Deveau, whose disco-tastic DRIVE screened at Spectacle in 2014.


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Spectacle Midnights presents: HEADLESS EYES
Dir. Kent Bateman, 1971.
78 min, USA.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 16 – MIDNIGHT

From The Third Annual Spectacle Shriek Show. (2013)

You know how it is for starving artists, right? I mean, look at your clothes. Anyway, it used to be even harder! So hard that some of them turned to a life of crime. This is especially true in the case of Arthur Malcolm. Down on his luck, Arthur is caught robbing an apartment and loses his eye in the process. Once he’s healed he’s out on the streets and, brother, he is HEATED. Arthur sets about on a mad killing spree, gouging out the eyes of his victims with a spoon. He collects the eyes for his artwork, you see. This continues for some time with mixed results.

This film was directed by Kent Bateman, father of Jason and Justine, in the streets of a now long gone version of NYC. According to this film, it was a time when a hooker would approach a man covered in blood in the middle of the day in order to turn a trick. The good old days. In addition to this movie being totally batshit insane with a FIERCE mutant soundtrack, it’s a veritable snapshot of a city as nasty as they come. The performances are hammy and intense, like Easter dinner in a mental institution.

Not to be missed!


THE NIGHT BEFORE
Dir. Arch Brown
USA, 72 min, 1973

MONDAY, OCTOBER 12 – 7:30 PM
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 17 – MIDNIGHT
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 20 – 10:00 PM

THE NIGHT BEFORE gets its straightforward gay porn “narrative” out of the way in the first half before getting on with being exceptionally odd and psychedelic. There’s body painting, someone sucking a disembodied cock that appears out of a bowl of fruit, a woman dancing in Central Park for no reason, and if you want to see an orgy scene
where a dildo goes in so deep it comes out someone’s mouth, this film is highly recommended. Also appearing: kittens.


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Horror Boobs presents: MARLEY’S REVENGE: THE MONSTER MOVIE
Dir. Jet Eller, 1989.
83 min, USA.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 23 – MIDNIGHT

From The Fourth Annual Spectacle Shriek Show. (2014)

“I don’t know about you, man, but I’m still huuuuungry.”

Two bozos get picked up by a gang of vigilantes out to scrub the streets of scum after mistaking the men for drug smugglers. The problem is they’re actually smuggling in their aunt and uncle. The four are whisked away to the local island where they murder all the other drug smugglers. You know what though? None of this even matters because once they get to the island things get really out of hand. Zombies rise from the grave, a giant hell monster shows up, and the vigilantes aren’t too pleased either. How will anyone escape this island alive?

Another marathon mainstay and VHS monolith, Horror Boobs has been providing not only marathon fare but midnight fodder at Spectacle for over a decade![citation needed] This years entry is…well, something special indeed.

Featuring a completely new transfer and other goodies. If you saw this at the marathon last year, you still haven’t truly seen it. A house favorite and rare treat!


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TROUBLE EVERY DAY
Dir. Claire Denis, 2001
France, 101 mins.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 2 – 10:00 PM
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 13 – 7:30 PM
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 30 – MIDNIGHT

An American doctor (Vincent Gallo) arrives in Paris with his new wife (Tricia Vessey). They are ostensibly on honeymoon, but he is strangely distant and preoccupied with finding a former a colleague. Meanwhile, a French couple live in seclusion, the husband (Alex Descas) both caring for and imprisoning his wife (Béatrice Dalle, exuding a primal power) whose mysterious illness has reduced her to a vehicle for her own bloodlust. Connections between these characters reveal themselves slowly; exposition here is a distant second to a deep sensuality in the truest sense of the word. Denis’ tactile approach to filmmaking is in full effect, the camera mapping out fragile bodies with careful, almost predatory attention, creating a discomfiting sense of intimacy. TROUBLE EVERY DAY is a film felt as much as viewed, and when it reaches its bloody apex, that’s a truly frightening thing.

VARIOLA VERA

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VARIOLA VERA
Dir: Goran Marković, 1982
Yugoslavia, 104 min.
In Serbo-Croatian with English subtitles.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 9 – 7:30 PM
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 17 – 10:00 PM
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 28 – 10:00 PM

A profoundly chilling dramatization of the true events surrounding a smallpox epidemic that hit former Yugoslavia in 1972, VARIOLA VERA presents a terrifying situation of how panic-stricken individuals and governments respond to an outbreak.

A pilgrim visiting a distant land returns to Yugoslavia with a flute and an infectious disease within it. His sickness grows and he ends up at Belgrade General Hospital, amongst a staff of doctors and nurses who seem more concerned with work gossip than saving the man’s life. The disease spreads throughout the hospital and soon enough, everyone is sealed off and locked inside the building in quarantine while the government desperately tries to find a solution.

Despite featuring a grisly plot line, director Goran Marković keeps the film from sliding into mere sensationalism, instead grounding it in tense realism and acute human drama, which makes it all the more startling once the body count begins to rise.

A potent mixture of body horror and disaster film, VARIOLA VERA is one of the most frightening ‘virus’ films ever made.

MIL KDU DES // M A P

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MIL KDU DES // M A P A.K.A. NATURE TRAIL TO HELL (IN SD)
Original Dir. Eduardo Sánchez & Daniel Myrick
Re-edit Rarer Borealis, 1999/2015
U.S., 30 min.

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 27 – 7:30 PM
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 27 – 10:00 PM

This Spectober, MIL KDU DES return after what seems like a (blissful) eternity to what one local medium referred to as “the most haunted three feet between seats and screen in all of Brooklyn” to pitch a tent in the camping grounds of Hell itself. The bands line-up may have changed (now Mark Freado Jr. & Steve Pellegrino – ex-Don Succulent / The California Racists), with no original members in sight but that signature MIL KDU DES sound remains and will shake you out of your sleeping bag.

In 1999 Eduardo Sánchez & Daniel Myrick changed the face of horror with their loving homage to the 1998 film THE LAST BROADCAST when they unleashed THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT onto an overly trusting, unsuspecting, and largely internet-less public. Fueled by a meticulously planned advertising campaign and a genuinely terrifying finale (no one cares if you don’t like it) the film would go on to garner laurels at everything from Cannes to the MTV Movie Awards.

Shot on 16mm and video the film concerns a team of grating but believable filmmakers as they attempt to film a documentary on the legend of The Blair Witch. The filmmakers even went as far as creating an entirely different fake documentary to air on the History Channel delving into the mythology they had created.

Featured here in a pulsating, throbbing, rhythmic re-edit by none other than Rarer Borealis, this is a rare chance to see this film as you never have before.

CAMMELL AFTER DARK

Best known for 1970’s Mick Jagger-starring PERFORMANCE (codirected with Nicolas Roeg), Scottish filmmaker Donald Cammell (1934 – 1996) was many things – a child of the aristocracy, a Crowley-inflected mystic who worked with the likes of Kenneth Anger, a skeptic of auteurism, a man described by Roman Polanski as “wicked”. This October, Spectacle is pleased to present two direly under-sung classics from this late cine-provocateur, both cowritten by Cammell and his widow China Kong.

TRIGGER WARNING: WHITE OF THE EYE features visceral sequences of murder and violence; both versions of WILD SIDE feature a harrowing rape sequence.


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WHITE OF THE EYE
Dir. Donald Cammell, 1987
U.K./U.S., 110 minutes.

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 10 – 7:30 PM
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 22 – 10:00 PM
MONDAY, OCTOBER 26 – 10:00 PM

“The only difference between a hunter and a killer…. is his prey.”

While Cammell’s producers were merely seeking to capitalize on the 80s brood of lurid cheapies, he and Kong would take an utterly different tack; the director described his adaptation of pulp author Margaret Tracy’s Mrs. White as “an artistic exploration of man’s need to destroy.” A family man (David Keith) is suspected of being a gated-community serial killer; Cathy Moriarty (RAGING BULL) stars as his wife. Scored by Pink Floyd’s Nick Mason, White of the Eye is an unmissable gem, a unique case study in onscreen violence, alienating Southwestern landscapes and characters carrying aching – insane, even – contradictions.

“As the action twists a benign homestead into a domestic nightmare, signature Cammell forms resurface—startling flash-cuts between the recent past and present creating schizoid sensations, an exaggerated emphasis on the eyeball as visual fulcrum for transitional delirium, and a soundtrack that announces invocation and possession.” – Chris Chang, Film Comment

“By far the most accomplished thriller I have seen this year. Deserves to be feted.” – Derek Malcolm, The Guardian

“A mesmerizing mosaic of a film.” – Nigel Andrews, Financial Times


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WILD SIDE
Dir. Donald Cammell, 1995.
U.S., 110 min. (Director’s cut); 95 min. (Nu Image re-edit)

Nu Image Re-edit
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 3 – MIDNIGHT

Director’s Cut
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 3 – 10:00 PM
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 16 – 7:30 PM
MONDAY, OCTOBER 26 – 7:30 PM

Donald Cammell’s fourth film in as many decades, the brilliant and berserk WILD SIDE is a beyond-salacious slab of psycho-noir starring Anne Heche as “Alex”, a Long Beach investment banker-cum sex worker for the rich and powerful. Tonight, that means Bruno – a shadowy millionaire money launderer (Christopher Walken, plus wig) – and perhaps also his valet, a sleazy undercover cop by the name of Tony (Steven Hauer, of Scarface fame). Cammell’s signature refracted narrative comes into play when Alex meets Bruno’s wife Virginia (Joan Chen), up-turning audience expectations for late-nite sleaze into a surprisingly tender, psychologically astute, and crushingly desperate queer love story. (There’s also a sublime Ryuichi Sakamoto score, and a concurrent subplot about a virus on a floppy disk that, if it fell into the wrong hands, would bring the western world to its knees.)

After Nu Image Productions wrested control of WILD SIDE away from Cammell and recut the film into the schizoid quasi-porn they thought they had paid for, the filmmaker saw fit to take his own life. In 2000, Kong supervised a painstaking, posthumous recut with editor Frank Mazzola; this October, Spectacle is thrilled to present both the damned and saved versions of WILD SIDE.

“Games are again played with power and identity, dangerous games but not fatal ones this time; if there is one difference between the Cammell of 1968 and of 1995 that stands out above all others, it is the replacement of Artaudian cruelty with an affectionate generosity towards his characters.” – Maximilian Le Cain, Senses of Cinema

“When this film was premiered at last year’s Edinburgh Festival, it was accompanied by a remarkable on-stage talk from Mazzola and Kong, who were able to show extracts from the butchered, and utterly different ‘TV version’: furnishing us with an unmissable masterclass in the realities of film editing and a radical essay in the textual aspects of cinema. I hope that Mr Mazzola and Ms Kong can be persuaded to repeat this lecture all over the country.” – Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

TROUBLE EVERY DAY

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TROUBLE EVERY DAY
Dir. Claire Denis, 2001
France, 101 mins.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 2 – 10:00 PM
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 13 – 7:30 PM
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 30 – MIDNIGHT

An American doctor (Vincent Gallo) arrives in Paris with his new wife (Tricia Vessey). They are ostensibly on honeymoon, but he is strangely distant and preoccupied with finding a former a colleague. Meanwhile, a French couple live in seclusion, the husband (Alex Descas) both caring for and imprisoning his wife (Béatrice Dalle, exuding a primal power) whose mysterious illness has reduced her to a vehicle for her own bloodlust. Connections between these characters reveal themselves slowly; exposition here is a distant second to a deep sensuality in the truest sense of the word. Denis’ tactile approach to filmmaking is in full effect, the camera mapping out fragile bodies with careful, almost predatory attention, creating a discomfiting sense of intimacy. TROUBLE EVERY DAY is a film felt as much as viewed, and when it reaches its bloody apex, that’s a truly frightening thing.