Google Video pick of the week #006

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La Señora Muerte (1967), is a couture horror flick. It was one of several pictures prolific B-movie director Jaime Salvador made with Luis Enrique Vergara at his Filmica Vergara CineComisiones production banner in Mexico.

This film opens with Marlene’s lover dying after sexing her. While being stricken, he asks for the shady Dr. Farell, an evil mad scientist-like character played by this guy’s dad.  Farell wickedly tells Marlene that he needs fresh blood to revive  her – much older – lover. Of course, to make things even more interesting, the blood has to come from young, fashion-forward women.

The film, while cheesy as hell (check out the mad scientists computer), features some fancy houses in what could be Polanco, and a wardrobe by Mexico’s foremost designer of the 60’s and 70s, Pedro Loredo. It works for the film since Marlene, an eventual killer and the woman of the flick’s title, is a fashion designer.

Her costuming— I presume is also by Loredo, in the credits his billing goes: “Desfile de modas/ diseños de Pedro Loredo/ creador de la moda mexicana.”

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Google Video pick of the week #005

FMX Closing night featured Nortec Collective (March 28, 2010 Mexico City)

At one point during an unseasonably cold and windy Mexico City evening, the video monitors behind Nortec Collective showed some animation that resembled a Kraftwerk video, except the guys playing the machines had mustaches and Norteño style cowboy hats.

An appropriate nod to their forefathers in electro experimentation. Here´s video from Sunday night.

This week´s Google Video is a smart documentary all about how 3 young Black men channeled the cold, rust and depression of 90s Detroit into techno, Europe´s millenial music.  Of course, for me, techno used to only remind me of vampires in a club.

Google Video pick of the week #004

¨Dream is Destiny,¨ precedes one of the first beats in Richard Linklater´s 2001 animated feature Waking Life.  Since I´m headed to SXSW in Austin, I figured I would post about this movie, which is so imaginatively rendered, and made by a writer/director best-known for catapulting Austin slackers into the film-making limelight.

Linklater, who in some of his older pictures, and with no facial hair, kind of reminds me of  a young Richie Sambora, was the poster boy for the indie film era that spawned (Jersey´s most visible movie director) Kevin Smith. And he has a resume as respected as any mildly successful Hollywood movie guy. Most of his films find niche audiences, but he´s made at least one movie everyone saw, School of Rock. His last movie, about Orson Welles, got good reviews.

¨Waking Life,¨ was one of two animated features the Texas director managed to bring to the screen. It uses a technique called ¨rotoscoping.¨ According to this Wired piece, ¨artists digitally trace over some frames of live-action footage by hand with a Wacom pen and tablet,¨ to create the trippy effects.

You can read a Web Q&A with the director, where he mentions some of the music he likes: ¨Duke Ellington and Bunny Berrigan and Fats Waller…¨ (via Empire Online).

Must See Factor: 5

Best Reason to See It: It gets kind of deep and existential in places.

Best part of the movie: The part where the guy gets shot.

Google Video pick of the week #003

Former Playboy photographer and WWII vet, Russ Meyer, directed this week’s 1965 pick, Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! Some call it a feminist cult classic, others call it violent trash. This is what Roger Ebert wrote about the director and his movies, when this film was re-released on DVD:

Take away all the jokes, the elaborate camera angles, the violence, the action and the sex, and what remains is the quintessential Russ Meyer  image: a towering woman with enormous breasts, who dominates all the men around her, demands sexual satisfaction and casts off men in the same way that, in mainstream sexual fantasies, men cast aside women.

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Google Video pick of the week #002

Didn’t know where the thought came from. Maybe seeing the recent Wolfman, Daybreakers, Zombieland, Rabid, Hurt Locker and Precious all in the same month had me thinking about morbid stuff. I was wondering to myself, just before taking a rest for the night, about a movie I saw, in which a doctor says he wants to chop off someone’s limb to see if it regenerates. I couldn’t think of the name of that flick, until I saw the trailer for Frankenstein Conquers the World (1965) just a minute ago. That’s the entire flick courtesy of Google Video up above.

The movie is basically about a boy who turns into a monster with a huge forehead. He was born from the heart of Frankenstein’s monster and the radiation effects of the bombing of Hiroshima in 1945. It was a Japanese film distributed in the U.S. by exploitation house American International Pictures.

Must See Factor: 2
Best Reason to See It: If you feel nostalgic for 60s Japanese Sci-Fi production values. Or have guilt about what we did in WWII
Best part of the movie: The chopped off hand they find in the jail cell.

It stars American actorNick Adams, a guy who died at 36 from a drug overdose and probably has a more interesting back story than the entire movie. His wiki page cites claims that he was on the down low with Elvis and James Dean.
His last film apperance was in Los Asesinos (1968), shot in Mexico City and starring Pedro Armendáriz Jr.

Here’s a list of Google Video Picks that if I didn’t have cable, and my DVD player was dead and I was craving cheese and nostalgia, I would watch. I imagine a security guard in the 80s watching these on some local station.

Dracula vs. Frankenstein (1971)

Mothra (1961)

Psycho A-Go-Go (1972)

Godzilla vs Megalon (1973)

Enjoy.

Google Video pick of the week #001

Willard” is currently available on Google Video via some outfit called moviepowder.com. It’s loosely based on a 1971 movie of the same name, but this 2003 non-hit has one of the best over-the-top, super-creepy performances by Crispin Glover. You know, the “Back to the Future,” guy. I’m interested to see how he plays the Knave of Hearts in Tim Burton’s 3-D “Alice in Wonderland.”

Must See Factor: 0
Best Reason to See It: Digital rats and Crispin Glover spazzing out.
Best part of the movie: Free.

If you’re unaware of Glover, his East Side connections, or his weird movies (he played Olivia Newton John in drag once), check his filmography.

Glover’s video for “Ben,” which he sang for the film.

Check out a teenage Michael Jackson performing one of his first solo #1 hits–about a rat–at the 1973 Academy Awards.