Monday, March 10, 2008

PD Project Part 10

Sci-Fi50

    Disc 10
  • Blood Tide (1982) runtime: 1:23:11

    A newlywed couple is searching for the man's lost sister only to find her on an island that used to be home to a sacrificial cult. Strange things start to happen after an archaeologist unseals the chamber the cult used for their sacrifices.
    I'll admit that I'm a sucker for anything remotely Lovecraftian. This has forbidden cults, suspicious natives and an eldritch horror. Hell yes! Plus it has James Earl Jones saying words. He's one of those phone book guys--he could read a phone book and it'd be awesome.
    The movie loses some points for being a little slow and not really having any cults. There used to be a cult on the island, but now nobody talks about the old ways. C'mon! More secret sacrifice cult! Even Casablanca could have used that.
    There is an AVI of this film on the Internet Archive, but as I said earlier, I can't imagine a film from 1982 being in the Public Domain so I won't be adding an MPEG to the Internet Archive.

  • The Brain Machine (1977) runtime: 1:20:56

    The government co-ops an experiment on over-population to test out a machine that reads minds.
    I don't even know what this movie is about. Eighty minutes of never knowing what the hell was going on and it wasn't like there was a whole lot of action to confuse me either. It was just eighty minutes of "Huh?"
    This may be PD. I couldn't find any copyright information on it under any of its sundry titles. It seems this film literally passed like a fart in a wind tunnel--the people involved knew it happened and they were the only ones who ever will.

  • The Wild Women of Wongo (1958) runtime: 1:11:58

    After offending the Dragon God, the women of Wongo must offer themselves for sacrifice.
    After watching this movie, I had to ask if I'd offended the Dragon God and if this was my punishment. How seriously can you take a movie titled The Wild Women of Wongo? Awful acting and stupid lines, it's never clear if the movie's trying to be cute... there's no "or." This is an aggressively stupid movie that feels like it's a parody of some genre, only there's nothing quite like this film. Makes me want to weep.
    All that, though, takes the movie seriously. And after watching Prehistoric Women it's clear that there actually was some weird prehistoric people finding love genre. That doesn't mean this movie's not stupid or poorly done (long stretches of nothing happening throughout the piece), but it does have a kindergarten-level charm. You get the impression watching the film that the people involved had no idea what they were doing and thus it carries the tone of an old VHS tape of a kid embarrassing himself at a family gathering, but being too un-self-aware to realize he's embarrassing himself. I could see this film being broken out at one of the actor's 50th wedding anniversary. "What was life like back when mom and dad met? Well we have a little footage here..."
    I'm pretty sure this is PD and I'm working on an upload.
    Wikipedia article

  • Prehistoric Women (1950) runtime: 1:12:50

    A prehistoric tribe of women sets out to capture some men to make their husbands.
    This doesn't have the cheeky charm of Wongo, and I didn't like Wongo. The movie's done in the style of an anthropological documentary--footage and narration. Only the narration is largely over wrought and unnecessary. It's literally telling you what's happening on-screen. So bad. Night shots aren't even day-for-night, they're just unlit night shots. Screen's nearly black for minutes at a time. It's hard to think of anything funny to say. Wongo was at least ridiculous (and called Wongo). This doesn't even have that. It's just nothing.
    Archive.org page
    Wikipedia article

I'll be back next time with Disc 11, the penultimate disc: pain, pain with Buck Rogers, pain with the Japanese and pain with the British. And this is not the worst disc in the batch.

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