Classic Cinema: One Body Too Many (1944)

“Sorry, I’m a drip.”

Jack Haley, best known for portraying the Tin Man in 1939’s The Wizard of Oz, and Bela Lugosi, the legendary Count Dracula of Dracula (1931), combine their humor and horror in One Body Too Many (1944). The film was directed by Frank McDonald, a director primarily known for his work in westerns and action films. McDonald and Haley would work together on three films for One Body Too Many‘s production company, Pine-Thomas Productions. The company was notorious for making films on a lean budget, but it’s hard to tell in this terrific comedic mystery.

In the film, Jack Haley stars as Albert Tuttle, a somewhat cowardly yet opportunistic insurance salesman who schedules an appointment with Cyrus J. Rutherford, a multi-millionaire who studies and believes in astrology. Rutherford passes away prior to Tuttle’s appointment and his lawyer gathers the Rutherford family and the mansion staff to read Rutherford’s will. The will states that Rutherford’s heirs will receive their portion of his wealth in descending order so long as they all remain at the mansion until a glass vault is built so that Rutherford can eternally look upon the heavens. If he is buried in any other place or his body goes missing, the heirs will receive their fortune in reverse order. Certain members of the family conspire to make sure that Rutherford’s body goes missing or is buried elsewhere so that they will gain a larger portion of the family fortune. Expecting such a thing to occur, Rutherford’s lawyer, Gellman, hires a security guard to watch the body. Tuttle arrives on the scene just minutes after the guard is attacked while on his way to the front door of the mansion. The family believes that Tuttle is the guard. High jinks ensue as Tuttle teams up with Rutherford’s niece, the lovely Carol Dunlap, to prevent his body from being taken away.

Lugosi stars in the film as Merkil, the family butler, and spends the film with Matthews (Blanche Yurka), the family maid. Together they plot against the family in a humorous fashion. Jean Parker plays Carol Dunlap. Fay Helm, Lucien Littlefield, Lyle Talbot, Douglas Fowley, Dorothy Granger, and Maxine Fife co-star as the Rutherford family and Bernard Nedell portrayed Attorney Gellman. All of the players had their humorous moments but Haley stood out from the pack. From pratfalls to wordplay, Haley had me laughing almost the entire time. Lugosi also had some very funny moments but they were on a much more subtle level.

Watching this film has inspired me to seek out the other Pine-Thomas films featuring Jack Haley. Those films are People Are Funny (1946), Take It Big (1944), and Scared Stiff (1945). As a fan of classic Hollywood films, I’m definitely going to do my best to find them. I’ll probably watch other Pine-Thomas films as well.

If you enjoy goofy comedies mixed with a bit of murder and mystery, check out One Body Too Many. It’s a surprisingly well made film that holds up well to this day.

Thanks for checking out my post. I hope to see some of you this weekend at CyPhaCon!

McFarlane Toys DC Multiverse Gold Label Beast Boy (2023)

“I may not be smart enough to know everything, but I’m dumb enough to try anything.”

George Perez is, was, and always will be one of my favorite comic book artists. With that in mind, it was a no-brainer to pick up this classic Perez-era Beast Boy figure from McFarlane Toys. While Perez didn’t create the character, that honor belongs to Arnold Drake and Bob Brown, the version that he and Marv Wolfman built for The New Teen Titans is easily the most popular version of the character. This particular figure draws inspiration for its suit and overall look from Perez’ artwork. It is a Walmart Exclusive Gold Label McFarlane Toys DC Multiverse figure and is available now in stores.

Sadly, while the figure itself looks nice, it’s nothing more than a repaint of the recent Jon Kent/Superman figure with a different head sculpt and paint apps and the giant “S” logo removed. I understand that reusing molds saves the company and the consumer money, but if you’re going to do such things, at least pick a mold that fits the character better or add in a few more accessories. It felt like McFarlane just phoned it in with this figure. Again, I do like the overall look of the figure, I just wish that McFarlane would come up with a base mold to be used on figures that are essentially wearing tights instead of using other hero molds.

As far as accessories go, Beast Boy comes with the standard figure base and trading card. His lone additional accessory is Beast Boy in eagle form. Yep, Beast Boy‘s accessory is another Beast Boy. You can’t even attach the eagle to the arm of other McFarlane characters like Robin or Cyborg. It’s just a chunk of green plastic. For a Gold Label figure, that’s a big shame. You would expect an exclusive figure to have at the least a second set of hands but, nope, not for Beast Boy.

I do like the articulation on this figure as he’s very poseable despite what my photos show. The right arm on my specific figure is loose, so watch out for that if you do buy this figure. Other than the articulation and the overall look of the figure, there’s not much to like about this Beast Boy and that makes me sad. Maybe McFarlane decided to go cheap with this version of Beast Boy to boost sales for its Titans Build-A-Figure line featuring Arsenal, Nightwing, Donna Troy, and Raven. I actually want to purchase this line of figures if I can find them, but the beefed up Beast Boy isn’t my favorite version of the character. If I do manage to collect all of the figures in the line, I’ll definitely have my Perez Beast Boy on display with them.

Thanks for reading my post. I really am disappointed by this Beast Boy figure. It deserved a much better release. This will be my last McFarlane review for awhile unless I manage to get my hands on the Titans wave or any of the new figures from the upcoming The Flash movie. See you again real soon!

McFarlane Toys DC Multiverse Gold Label Robin/Tim Drake (2022)

“What would he say if he saw my Robin gear?”

It’s been awhile since I last posted a McFarlane Toys DC Multiverse review. To be completely honest, I’ve slowed down on collecting action figures. It’s partially based on the fact that it can be a pretty pricey hobby, but it’s also due to the fact that I’m in a state of transition in my home and my office. I haven’t really been able to photograph figures like I normally do before reviewing them. This particular figure, Robin/Tim Drake, has actually been in my possession for a few months. I’ve had the photos on my laptop for basically the same amount of time. I finally decided to give all of you a glimpse at this figure.

The figure is an Amazon exclusive Gold Label figure. It features Tim Drake in his second Robin costume, the one that he creates in memory of his friend, Superboy. It’s essentially a red suit with black boots, gloves, and shorts over his full length pants. His mask is black and his cape is black with a yellow interior. While it isn’t the flashiest of Tim Drake’s costumes, it’s still a pretty good looking suit. Included with the figure is the standard black DC base, a collector card, a batarang, and Tim Drake’s bo staff.

My figure in particular has very stiff joints. This made the figure difficult to pose and even after trying numerous positions, I had to settle on Robin leaning back slightly for his final pose. The detailing is decent but you’ll notice that the mold looks more like an armored version of Robin’s costume that includes green coloring. On March 2nd of this year, McFarlane announced an upcoming Tim Drake: Robin Reborn figure with the more traditional Robin costume and the same mold as this figure, so if you’re a bigger fan of that particular suit, you may want to hold off until the Reborn figure is released. I’ll probably grab the figure for myself as I definitely prefer the paint apps in the prototype shown below.

I really like the red and black suit but I have to admit that it’s a tad dull. I really like Tim Drake as Robin/Red Robin/Drake and hope that the upcoming figure will do him as much justice as his Red Robin figure did last year. I reviewed that figure and you can check that out here. I only recommend this Robin/Tim Drake figure to completionists and Tim Drake fans. Otherwise, hold out for the new figure coming later this year.

Thanks for checking out my review. I have one more McFarlane Toys DC Multiverse figure to review and it’s the Gold Label Beast Boy recently released exclusively at Walmart. I hope to complete that review very soon!

Throwback Thursday: Edge Of The Axe (1988)

“Where are you, Gerald?

I have to admit that 1988’s Edge Of The Axe slipped never hit my radar until a few days ago. I was completely unaware that the film even existed until it was recommended to me on Tubi. I was intrigued by the look of the slasher in the film and was familiar with some of the other work done by its director, Jose Ramon Larraz, so I decided to give it a shot. What I found was a really good standard slasher film that is just begging for a sequel.

The film opens with the brutal murder of a nurse in the middle of an automated car wash by an axe wielding assailant with a white mask that encompasses his head, save for two eye holes. From there we follow a young man named Gerald while he’s riding his motorcycle home in Paddock County. We get to see a ton of beautiful scenery while he’s riding along and then we are introduced to Brock, Richard, and a dead waitress named Maria. From there we are introduced to a number of other characters, many of which will end up on the business end of the killer’s axe. Of special note is Lillian Nebbs. Lillian works every summer at her father’s bar. She and Gerald become fast friends and connect with one another by chatting on computers. As the story moves along, the body count rises. The number of suspects also rises. Everybody from the local sheriff to the local priest have a turn at being a suspect in the viewer’s eyes, with a few characters blatantly tossed into the potential lineup. When we finally learn who the killer really is, it is revealed in a shocking way and the film abruptly ends with a closing shot that makes the viewer (or at least me) wish that a second film was made.

Larraz does a really great job of throwing viewers off as to the true identity of the slasher. The twist ending is also a nice touch. Larraz used a mishmash of American and Spanish actors in the film. Barton Faulks starred as Gerald Martin. Christina Marie Lane portrayed Lillian Nebbs. Patty Shepard, Jack Taylor, Conrado San Martin, Elmer Modling, and May Heatherly also appeared in the film. While the acting was nothing stellar, it wasn’t terrible, either.

The murders in the film were brutal. While a few happened off screen, most of them were shown in all of their gory glory. Viewers get to see the killer hack at victims with reckless abandon. While it’s pretty obvious that the axe isn’t actually penetrating the skin, practical effects were used to make blood spray all over the place. They did a great job with the effects considering the budget and the year. The film does have a look and feel of an early 80’s slasher film, however, and I had to double check the release date.

While it doesn’t break any new ground in the slasher genre, Edge Of The Axe is a serviceable genre flick that delivers decent thrills, brutal kills, and a pretty cool twist ending.

Thanks for checking out my post. Edge Of The Axe is currently available on Amazon Prime and Tubi. It’s also available on Blu-ray. If you haven’t seen it and love slasher movies, give this one a look.

Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998)

“My name’s not Kerri Tate.”

With a litany of disappointing and/or critically panned sequels following Halloween II (1981), the Halloween franchise was pretty much dead in the mid-1990s. Hoping to possibly resurrect the franchise and also to cash in on the resurgence of the slasher film thanks to the success of Scream (1996), Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998) hit the big screen with a story that ignores all but the first two films and celebrates the twentieth anniversary of the first Halloween film released in 1978. John Carpenter was originally offered the job of directing the film but he eventually backed out of the project whenever Moustapha Akkad, who produced Carpenter’s original Halloween film (and all of the sequels after it), refused to pay him ten million dollars and to agree to a three film deal. Jamie Lee Curtis returned to play Laurie Strode only on the condition that she would kill Michael Myers in the film in a way that would not tease a sequel. Also returning was Nancy Stephens as Nurse Chambers from Halloween II.

Kevin Williamson, riding a wave of success thanks to Scream, was brought in to help write the film. While his script wasn’t ultimately accepted, his input was utilized throughout the film’s production. Also brought in was newcomer Josh Hartnett as John Tate, Laurie’s son. He pulled double duty while working on the film as he was also working on The Faculty, another Dimension film production. Portraying John’s girlfriend, Molly, was Michelle Williams. Williams was also working on the first season of Williamson’s Dawson’s Creek television series at the time. Jodi Lyn O’Keefe and Adam Hann-Byrd portrayed John and Molly’s coupled friends, Sara and Charlie. O’Keefe was already in a successful television series, Nash Bridges, and Hann-Byrd was known for playing a young Robin Williams in Jumanji (1995) and starring in Little Man Tate (1991). Adam Arkin played Laurie’s love interest, Will, and LL Cool J portrayed a school guard named Ronny. It’s also noteworthy that Jamie Lee Curtis’ mother, Janet Leigh, herself a scream queen, also has a cameo as Norma Watson, Laurie’s secretary. Joseph Gordon-Levitt also has a small role in the film.

The film takes place twenty years after the events of the first two films. Laurie Strode is now living in California under the name “Kerri Tate” and is the headmistress of an exclusive and very secure school. She has a son named John and is developing a relationship with one of her co-workers, Will Brennan. John is celebrating his seventeenth birthday as well. Oh, and it’s Halloween. The rest of the school is getting ready for a trip to Yosemite National Park but Laurie/Kerri refuses to allow John to go in case Michael Myers shows up. John, convinced that Michael is long dead and not a threat anymore, decides to rebel by having a private party with Molly, Sarah, and Charlie while the campus is empty. Michael is on his way, however, having acquired Laurie Strode’s file from the home of Nurse Chambers. He arrives on the scene once all of the students have left for their trip and begins to eliminate people one by one as he makes his way to Laurie. Will Laurie finally kill her demented brother???? Watch Halloween H20: 20 Years Later in order to find out!

While it’s definitely an improvement over the sequels in the franchise, H20 is no masterpiece. It lacks the suspense of the original film and first sequel. Michael Myers is, at least in my opinion, entirely too clean and too slim to be a real threat to his victims. This is my least favorite portrayal of Myers in all of the films. Heck, they couldn’t even get his mask right (it changes throughout the film). The cast do a fine job but there’s just not enough substance to this film to really pull it out of its own mediocrity. I did enjoy all of the callbacks to other franchises. Scream, Friday The 13th, and Psycho are all given some pretty slick references (especially Psycho) that hardcore fans of the slasher genre will enjoy if they pick up on them. The climax of the film, while meant to shock, seemed to do nothing more than provide the film with a place to stop. Even back in theaters in the late 90s the ending didn’t hit like it was meant to when moviegoers witnessed it. In all, this is a serviceable sequel that could have been much better.

Is it worth watching? Yeah, especially if you really, really dislike the sequels prior to and immediately after it. It’s sad how this film provided such a decent starting point for a new series of sequels but instead we got the trainwreck that was Halloween: Resurrection (2002). Halloween is my favorite slasher franchise, but that’s primarily based on the strength of the first two films. I also enjoyed the Rob Zombie films (I know that they are pretty divisive) but the latest trio of films, especially Halloween Kills (2021) left me wanting.

Well, thanks for checking out my review. I know that I was kind of brutal about this film (at least “brutal” compared to most of my other reviews), but it just doesn’t meet expectations. I’ll be reviewing some more films later this month and throughout the rest of the year. I promise to find some good ones for you to enjoy!

Classic Cinema: The Lost World (1925)

Love and Dinosaurs

With Willis H. O’Brien providing dazzling special effects, First National Pictures released what is considered to be the first full length feature film featuring stop-motion animation, 1925’s The Lost World. The silent film, directed by Harry O. Hoyt and adapted from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s book of the same name by Marion Fairfax, is also considered to be one of the last major silent films to be released before “talkies” began dominating the big screen. The film starred Bessie Love as Paula White, Lloyd Hughes as Edward Malone, Lewis Stone as Sir John Roxton, and the grizzly Wallace Beery as Professor George Edward Challenger. Also featured in the film are Bull Montana as Ape Man, Jocko the monkey as himself, and Mary the chimpanzee as herself.

L to R: Beery, Hughes, Love, and Stone.

In the film, Paula White brings her father’s journal to Professor Challenger. In it he finds sketches and drawings of what appear to be dinosaurs. Convinced that they still exist but ridiculed by his contemporaries, Challenger forms a new expedition to seek out this “lost world,” prove the existence of the dinosaurs, and hopefully find Paula’s father still alive. With no one willing to pay for the expedition, Challenger accepts the assistance of a newspaper reporter, Malone, whose employers will finance the expedition if Malone can tag along with the group. Also joining the expedition is the famous big game hunter, Sir John Roxton, who has a secret love for Paula White. Malone goes on the expedition not only as a reporter, but to impress his fiancee, Gladys Hungerford (Alma Bennett), who believes that she can’t marry a man who has never had a dangerous assignment.

Once they arrive in the “lost world,” which is apparently on a high plateau that borders Peru, Brazil, and Colombia, the group encounters a number of dangers. An Ape Man and his chimpanzee friend throw a giant rock at the expedition. After felling a lone tree to make a bridge to reach the plateau, the group is trapped on the plateau whenever a brontosaurus knocks the tree into the river below. They see a number of dinosaurs battle one another and are attacked by an Allosaurus. Sir Roxton manages to find the remains of Paula’s father, Maple White. A volcano erupts causing chaos on the plateau and the group look for a way to escape. Eventually the group manage to be rescued by two members of the expedition, Austin and Zambo, who stayed at the initial campsite across from the plateau. They fashion a rope ladder out of hammocks and have Jocko, Paula’s pet monkey, crawl up the sheer wall of the plateau to save the group. They are attacked once again by the Ape Man and his chimpanzee friend but manage to escape. Then they are found by British military forces who assist them in bringing a captive brontosaurus back to London. With proof on the way to the London docks, Professor Challenger appears before his contemporaries once more. The dinosaur manages to break free from its cage, however, and goes on a rampage through the streets of London. What happens next? Watch The Lost World to find out!

It’s no surprise that this is a very solid film considering its source material. The story features tons of action and features an excellent subplot involving a love triangle. Sir John Roxton is secretly in love with Paula White and while on the expedition, Edward Malone falls for her as well. Lewis Stone is simply wonderful in his execution of his role as Roxton. He gives some amazingly subtle cues to show his affection for White whereas Malone is something of a goofy love interest. Also worth mentioning is the wild performance of Wallace Beery as Challenger. At times he comes across as a madman literally willing to punch his way out of any situation. The special effects are amazing as well and hint at the brilliance that would come from Willis H. O’Brien in his later films, most notably King Kong (1933). The film holds up extremely well to this day.

Alma Bennett as Gladys Hungerford. While mentioned by name, Gladys appears in only one restoration of the film to my knowledge.

There have been a number of restorations and releases of this film over the years. The movie was almost completely lost when RKO Studios tried to have all copies of the film destroyed so that King Kong would appear to be the greatest stop-motion spectacle of its time. Most restorations run just over sixty minutes, with the character of Gladys completely omitted from the film other than being mentioned by name. Flicker Alley and Lobster Films released what they call the complete film on Blu-ray in 2017. I hope to obtain a copy of that restoration in the near future.

The Ape Man portrayed by Bull Montana.

This film is amazing. It would go on to inspire works such as King Kong, Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park novels and their subsequent films, and numerous other adventure novels, films, and television shows. It’s hard to find any flaws in the film itself other than the fact that one character, Zambo, is portrayed by a white actor, Jules Cowles, in blackface. Other than that one miscue that can be attributed to the days in which it was made, The Lost World is a hit and arguably one of the first big popcorn flicks ever created.

Willis H. O’Brien on set.

Thanks for checking out my post. I have two events coming up in the next two months. CyPhaCon at the end of March and the Fouke Monster Festival at the end of April. If you attend either of these events, please come by and say hello!

Classic Cinema: Alice In Wonderland (1915)

“I wish my cat were here. She’s such a capital one for catching mice.”

Lewis Carroll’s 1865 novel Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland has been adapted for the stage, film, and television multiple times over the years. It all began in 1886 when a musical stage adaptation called Alice In Wonderland was produced by Henry Savile Clarke and Walter Slaughter in London’s West End. The first film adaptation of the novel was 1903’s Alice In Wonderland. It was a silent film directed by Cecil Hepworth and Percy Stow and starred May Clark as Alice. 1951’s animated Alice In Wonderland, produced by Walt Disney Productions, is one of the best known and most popular versions of the story. Kathryn Beaumont voiced Alice in the film. Today I’ll take a look at one of the earliest adaptations of the book, 1915’s silent Alice In Wonderland.

ALICE IN WONDERLAND, Viola Savoy, 1915

The film starred Viola Savoy in the title role. Despite having appeared in over one hundred stage productions from her infancy to her early teens, Savoy made only two films, Alice In Wonderland and The Spendthrift (1915), and then she permanently retired from acting. Other players in the film included Harry Marks as the Dodo Bird, William Tilden as the Mad Hatter, Louis Merkle as the Dormouse, and Herbert Rice as the White Rabbit.

In the film, Alice falls asleep in a meadow while listening to her sister read to her. While dreaming she follows the White Rabbit down a rabbit hole that leads her to a world full of anthropomorphized animals and other bizarre beings. The film then goes through a series of interactions between Alice and the inhabitants of Wonderland. In one of my favorite interactions she attends an animal gathering in which she brags on how well her cat can catch mice, birds, and other animals. Offended by Alice, the animals all leave her one at a time in disgust. It’s just one of a number of humorous interactions that Alice has with characters such as the Cheshire Cat, the Mock Turtle, and the Queen of Hearts.

A few sequences from the film have been lost to time. Most notably, the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party and Alice meeting Humpty Dumpty cannot be found in their entirety. Most available versions of the film, both home media and streaming, run about fifty-two minutes. Some of these versions are completely silent and others include musical accompaniment. Portions of the lost sequences are available online but they aren’t in very good shape.

The film, directed and written by W.W. Young, is basically one mid to wide shot after another in which Alice has her interactions. While not much can be said about Young’s style it should be noted that this is his only directing credit and he also has one editing credit for a documentary entitled The Mystery Of Life (1930). Other than that there isn’t much more listed on IMDb about him. The film should definitely be praised for its elaborate costumes, some of which included moving mouths and blinking eyes. It should also be noted that this is the first film to include stories from both Alice In Wonderland and its sequel, Carroll’s Through The Looking-Glass, And What Alice Found There (1871). Sadly, none of the sequences from Looking-Glass are known to exist. The film is also one of the few adaptations to feature the “You Are Old, Father William” poem.

Is 1915’s Alice In Wonderland a blockbuster? Nah, but it’s still a pretty amazing film full of brilliantly designed characters. It’s definitely worth checking out if for no other reason than to witness one of the earliest film adaptations of Lewis Carroll’s beloved book.

Thanks for checking out today’s post. See you again soon!

Scream VI (2023)

It’s okay, Sid. This review is spoiler free!

Scream VI sliced and diced its way into theaters last week and I was fortunate enough to see it on Friday with my daughter. She’s a massive Scream franchise fan and was looking forward to the latest installment in the series as was I. We saw an early showing at a theater that lacked every single freebie and/or collectible, so we didn’t get any cool posters, cups, popcorn buckets, or plushies. We did, however, get a theater with just a few other people in it so we didn’t have to worry about anybody being loud or annoying during the movie.

In the film, viewers get to catch up with Sam and Tara, who have moved to New York along with their best buds and twin brother and sister, Chad and Mindy Meeks-Martin. Sam and Tara share an apartment with Quinn, their VERY sexually active roommate. Mindy has a steady girlfriend named Anika and Chad is rooming with the virginal and naive Ethan. Tara is trying desperately to break away from her overprotective sister and Sam is struggling with the events that happened in Woodsboro and attends therapy as a result. Also along for the ride is Detective Baily, Quinn’s father and the lead investigator trying to stop the newest Ghostface. Assisting him is a special agent from the FBI, Kirby Reed, who Scream fans will recognize as one of the survivors from Scream 4. While Sidney Prescott sits this flick out, her old pal Gale Weathers does appear in the film albeit in a reduced capacity.

The film poster teases “New York, New Rules,” and this Scream is different from the others in the fact that Ghostface has a somewhat unique and, at least in my opinion, believable motive for murder. The film has quite a few well orchestrated kills including one that I consider to be one of the best in the entire franchise. It also brings back some of the humor from the original film that has been slowly filtered out of the series over the years. Jenna Ortega as Tara is especially funny in some pretty perilous moments. I also loved the setting of the film’s final showdown. It definitely felt like it was a love letter to fans of the franchise.

As good as this film was it definitely had a few shortcomings. For starters, the signature opening kill was predictable. I believe that it was intentionally done this way in order to set up the rest of the movie but it felt a bit forced. As protective as Sam is, she (and the rest of the gang) makes some pretty dumb choices that leave her and others wide open to a Ghostface attack. Mindy really, really got on my nerves at times. Kirby seemed to be jammed into the film in order to fill the hole left by Sidney’s absence. In all honesty, I didn’t miss Sidney and Kirby was a bit of a nuisance. I also disliked the fact that many of Ghostface’s victims seemed to miraculously survive some very brutal attacks. I also managed to pick out one of the Ghostface killers not long after they appeared on screen.

I don’t want to say too much more about the film because I’ll risk spoiling it. That being said, this movie was very good and I enjoyed it more than Scream (2022). Sam (Melissa Barrera) gets to flesh her character out a bit more this time. Tara is funny, perhaps unintentionally at moments, but Jenna Ortega really stands out in this film. Courteney Cox could have phoned in her performance as Gale Weathers but actually took the character to a different level. Even though her role is smaller in this film, Cox took advantage of every second of her screen time and pulled off one of the funniest moments in the film and the franchise. Of course, I can’t mention this moment because this is a spoiler free review but if you happen to see me in the real world or want to shoot me a message, do so and we can talk about THAT moment in the film. Jasmin Savoy-Brown’s Mindy got under my skin. I fully understand that she’s Randy’s niece and she has a penchant to act like him, but I really pulled for Ghostface to take her out in this flick. Unlike Mindy, I was glad to see her twin brother, Chad (Mason Gooding), actually get some character development. He’s more than just the “jock” in this latest Scream installment. Kirby always bugged me in Scream 4, which also happens to be my least favorite film in the franchise, and I saw no reason for bringing her back for this film. Hayden Panettiere’s performance seemed out of place and I wish that Kirby wasn’t even in this movie. Of the new characters, Quinn (Liana Liberato) is probably my favorite. She injected a ton of humor into the film. Jack Champion as Ethan was pretty quiet and stayed in the background a lot of the time. He did a decent job in the film. The only other character worthy of mention is Detective Bailey (Dermot Mulroney), who I enjoyed.

Scream VI is better than its immediate predecessor but it won’t dethrone the original as my favorite Scream film. It features excellent kills, great humor, and one of the most believable Ghostface motives in a long time. It’s also very predictable at times and suffers from annoying characters like Mindy and Kirby. Still, go check it out. It’s worth a movie ticket.

Thanks for checking out my post. See you again real soon1

Louisiana Comic Con 2023!

Cajundome Convention Center, Lafayette, LA

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of attending Louisiana Comic Con in Lafayette, LA. I’ve been attending this event regularly for the last few years (minus one hurricane cancellation and COVID cancellations). Of all of the conventions that I have attended either as a fan or as a panelist, Louisiana Comic Con has always been at the top of the list when it comes to professionalism and entertainment value. This year was, in my opinion, one of their best shows yet.

The guest list was excellent this year. Voice actors such as Brittney Karbowski and Kyle Phillips, live action film stars such as Kane Hodder and Ron Perlman, and cosplayers such as Strangecat Cosplay, Retters Cosplay, and Shelby Marie were all in attendance. There were also guests from a number of other film and anime franchises. All of them were happy to meet, sign autographs, and take photos with their fans. There were also numerous vendors and comic artists on site as well.

I spent much of my free time catching up with old friends, many of whom I haven’t talked to in person in years. I also made two new friends, Henry and Dexter, as we teamed up as the Scream Kings for a trivia game against Loki. We managed to win first prize, free Louisiana Comic Con tees, and became fast friends over our love of horror films. I was also fortunate enough to meet Brian Tochi and Robbie Rist. Mr. Tochi appeared in the Police Academy franchise and Revenge of the Nerds. I was there primarily because he was the voice of Leonardo in the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles films. Mr. Rist is perhaps best known as Cousin Oliver in The Brady Bunch, but he is also a successful voice actor and appeared on the Kidd Video series. I met him due to the fact that he voiced Michelangelo in the original TMNT films. Both of them were excellent and Rist really had me laughing as we took selfies together.

I’ve presented panels at Louisiana Comic Con for the last few events and this year I got to present TWO panels! Both panels took place upstairs in Panel Room One. I presented my Bigfoot On The Big Screen panel on Saturday and my Iconic Scream Queens panel on Sunday. Both were well attended and attendees asked some great questions. I represented Filmsquatch on Saturday and gave away a Filmsquatch cap. I also gave out Ken’s Alternate Universe and Filmsquatch stickers to anybody that wanted one. It was a true honor to present my panels this year.

Photo taken by Louisiana Comic Con staff.

I definitely plan on attending Louisiana Comic Con next year and can’t wait to see what amazing things they have planned. They’ve improved each year and I expect next year to be great.

If you’ve never attended Louisiana Comic Con, do yourself a favor and check it out next year. You won’t regret it.

Thanks for checking out my post. I’ll be reviewing the new Scream film soon and I’ll be attending CyPhaCon at the end of the month. Hopefully I’ll be seeing some of you at conventions this year!

Classic Horror: The Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari (1920)

“Awaken for a moment from your dark night.”

Filmed entirely in a studio of intentionally bizarre and misshaped sets, 1920’s The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari takes its viewers on a twisted ride full of murder, insanity, and a sleepwalking. It stars Werner Krauss as Dr. Caligari, Friedrich Feher as Francis, Lil Dagover as Jane, and Conrad Veidt as Cesare. It was written by Hans Janowitz and Carl Mayer. It was directed by Robert Wiene. The silent film is considered one of the best representations of German Expressionism during the early 1900s. The film was divisive for critics and general filmgoers alike during its initial run in Germany and proved to be the same in other parts of the world due in part to the reception of Germany in general after the first World War. Despite this, Caligari would become one of the most influential films not just of its time, but of all time both in Germany and worldwide.

The film opens with Francis and another man talking. Francis then points out his fiancee, Jane, to the man and begins to tell him the story of Dr. Caligari. As Francis tells the story, we learn how Dr. Caligari uses a somnambulist (a sleepwalker) named Cesare to murder people in the town of Holstenwall. The town is thrown into chaos as they attempt to discover who is committing the murders. Eventually Francis discovers the truth of Dr. Caligari and he follows him to a local insane asylum. To tell you what happens next would ruin the film. If you haven’t seen The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, I highly recommend that you see it.

I could spend a lot of time discussing the themes covered in this film but I believe that it would be best for you to discover them for yourselves. You can easily look them up on the internet as well, but I highly recommend watching the film first. While you will most likely pick up on some of the themes easily, others will require you to place yourself in the mindset of Germans in the 1920s and/or the world as a whole at the time. The movie is entertaining on its own, but as you begin to recognize the themes involved you will realize that it is much more than a horror film about a murderer that uses an innocent sleepwalker to do his dastardly deeds.

The film is creepy. The cast all do an amazing job, especially Feher as Francis and Veidt as Cesare. The sets are amazing. They are a visual feast even if they are in black and white. Everything is out of whack and off balance. In all honesty they reminded me of many of Tim Burton’s creations, especially Beetlejuice, The Corpse Bride, and his short, Vincent. That being said, as much as Burton’s style seems to resemble Caligari, he admits that he didn’t see the film until well into his adulthood.

Be sure to check out this amazing film. You will not regret it.

Thanks for checking out my post. I’ll see you all again real soon.