Wednesday, July 6, 2016

El ataúd del Vampiro (AKA Vampire's Coffin), 1958, Staring: Abel Salazar, Ariadna Welter, and Germán Robles. Directed by Fernando Méndez

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Stumbling around on Netflix in the "horror' genera is always A. disappointing, and B. a gamble. There is no shortage of bad Z rate independent films that fall short in many different ways. Not saying I could make movies that looked half as good as most of them, but still, I am going to devote my time to a couple hours of sitting still (pretty difficult for me) it better grab me from the get go and keep me at least entertained.

Luckily for Vampire's Coffin, it did just that. Right at the beginning, they are busting open a tomb. Good job guys, that makes me want to know why you are trying to steal a vampire body and also why granite slabs weigh basically that same as pieces of plywood in Mexico. Consider me roped in. 

Cue the crazy screaming lady. Check. Put vampire coffin in fancy herse and drive to.... hospital? Sure, check. 

This movie is a bit confusing, however, they do a nice job of filling you in by using some expositionary dialogue and if you would rather watch another black and white film made a year earlier, because this is actually a sequel, feel free. I didn't and I figured 98% of everything out except for the mysterious aunt.

This movie, like a lot of movies from this era, has a couple pretty weird dance numbers, and even more odd, these appear to be based on a theater adaptation of "Prince of Foxes" at least that is what the sign says, in english no less, however I thought that book was about a blacksmiths adventures, but hey maybe I am thinking of the wrong book. I am no officianato on dance, but I have no idea what kind of dancing this is suppose to be or why the girls seem to be very bored and the men are these dancing machines that are doing wild pirouettes and arial jumps.

Also going way back to the beginning, did anyone else think it was weird that because he was staked you could see his skeleton in the mirror but not his skin? Yeah me too, it left me wondering if that was an all the time thing, worry not they answer that question for you later, although it will just make you have more questions, at least it did me.

The effects were extremely hit and miss. Of course we are talking about a movie made in 1958. The fades, vanishing, and walking through walls were all superbly done for the age of this film, with that said, the vampire bat has visible wires 86% of the time and for some reason it is making noises I equate with the gulls that fly around here. They do get extra points for what ever sort of adorable bat they used for the face close ups though, he was stinking cute and I want to kiss his nose.

On to the torturous wax museum. First, can some one please tell me if wax museums are just really full of torture devices all the time? This is the 3rd movie where one is just basically an elaborate front to keep deadly devices of torture in plain view. Secondly, I would ask why a wax museum would ever need a security guard, but that question is very quickly answered when they decapitate one of the wax figures. Side question, if that is a regular part of the tour, do they just reattach his head every night? I have very little knowledge of wax museums, except they make me skittish. At any rate, the vampires coffin is hiding down in the sub-basement, and of course hi-jinx ensue.

I would say if you are a fan of vintage vampire horror, give this a watch. It was not scary in the least, not really even suspenseful, but the bumbling doctors and nurse turned dancer are fairly entertaining. The only thing I couldn't figure out is if the aunt is some sort of shape shifter or if I just wasn't paying enough attention.

If you end up watching it, feel free to leave comments or send me an email letting me know what you thought! 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Again? Why did you not update for so long?

Tuesday, July 5, 2016
-Is what I am assuming you are all saying, if you are even still here to read this in the first place.

Well, the be honest, I am very burnt out. Captioning the show took up far more time than I ever thought possible (up to 18 hours per week) which is fine, but when you watch the same movie for 18 hours, it makes you never want to watch any movie ever again.

That being said, after captioning a movie, and possibly writing for the show, the last thing I felt like doing was watching ANOTHER movie and writing about that for my blog. In addition to that there have been other things that have been draining, just little things that keep happening that are just exhausting. We moved to Channel 8 proper so people with dish could see us, and now due to some kerfuffle, they cannot. We added the kitchen segment to help take up time, which it does, but ingredients cost money, which is in limited supply... blah, blah, blah, the random tedium goes on and on.

Please don't get me wrong, I still love making Midnite Mausoleum. It just get's a bit repetitive after 7 years and change. Myself and Blake have been mulling over our options and trying to figure out some new ways to "breathe life" back into the show, or should that be breathe death?

I am on "vacation" from the show until the fall, and I am hoping by then I will have more drive again for M.M. related things. I am still making all the scheduled appearances I promised I would, because after all, the only reason I am still making M.M. at all is because of all the amazing people who (should that be whom? I need to buy some books on how to speak english and grammar) I have met over the years who truly love watching the show. It was never about the money or the "fame", in fact, I have no want of fame. I am shy and like to sit out in my garden and eat lettuce, because apparently I am the human reincarnation of a rabbit. When I say vacation, it always has quotation marks around it because even though I am not actively writing and recording new episodes, I am still taking care of orders, helping design things, watching movies that might be in episodes next 'season', and various other M.M. related things.

With all that aside, now that I AM on 'vacation', I will be updating here much more often. I am sure you have noticed there have been many cosmetic changes around here. I am still working on them. I need to take new photos of myself, green hair and all that, I just have not found a good time yet. I also have added some new categories to the blog: 'girly reviews' and 'plants', I figure that since I buy things (mainly cosmetics, I am garbage at clothing) and garden on a daily basis, it should give me some things to write about.

There will probably be more also in the future as I continue to work on my fantasy book I have been working on for, I don't know, about 8 years at this point (that sounds amazing, trust me though, it is mostly because I am constantly questioning if I should even be trying to write in the first place rather than that I am the next J.R.R. Tolkien or even the next Stephanie Meyer... Yikes, I hope it isn't that girly. Credit where credit is due though, even though I am not a fan, she has written several books which have made her mega money, so if nothing else she knows what people want and she delivered.) And also, I am attempting to start a little weekly 3 panel webcomic about my cats (with some heavy artistic license).

I may or may not also do some book reviews. I generally read rather fluffy books, since I have plenty of drama and conflict in my day to day life, however, if any one has any books they think I should be reading that involve: Horror, steampunk, supernatural, gothic, sci-fi, victorian era, or comedy send me an email at My current favorite authors are Gail Carriger and A. Lee Martinez if that helps any, and bonus points if it is available on audible, because then I can listen to it while I package orders and drive all over the place.

So now you have a little window into my mess of a brain. I hope you are all doing well and summer is treating you awesomely. Thanks for sticking with me, if you are still here.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Chawz (Chaw or Chawu), 2009, Staring Won-young Choi, Tae- woong Eom, and Seong-kwang Ha. Directed by Jeong-won Shin

Tuesday, February 2, 2016
I am not sure how the entire month of January managed to sneak by me, some how though it is February so, even though it isn't Monday I thought I will post a movie review. The other day I signed up for a streaming horror channel (or app, I'm not sure what it is called really) called Shudder, and I can tell you if you enjoy various forms of horrific movies, it is well worth the $5.00 a month, and from what I have gathered each month there are different movies (and I don't mean like 5 different movies, there are A LOT.) That being said, because of that, I hopefully will be posting more movie reviews here. I am going to preface this review by informing you all I am and have been ill for a couple weeks and I am on some pretty serious medicines, so if this gets rambley or disjointed, I am very sorry.

With out further adieu, let's talk about the movie. Today's movie is Chawz according to the cover of the DVD, Chaw according to Shudder, and Chawu according to IMDB. No matter what it is titled as, this is an Asian monster movie through and though, quirky comic relief, seriously angry monster over baby theft (and roasting of his lady monster), and of course some really determined people. I am getting ahead of myself. I am going to say right here that if animal cruelty or hunting is a trigger for you, this is probably not going to be something you should watch, the opening credits are pretty gruesome mashup of what looks to be hunting videos, there are several scenes depicting people eating animals in various states of butcher, and they do eviscerate a hog. All that being said, although I care greatly for animals, I also spent a great deal of my young life on a farm or hunting, so, I easily made it though. Furthermore, this movie has subtitles, so you will be doing some reading unless you happen to be fluent in Korean.

When I first decided to watch this movie, I was also not aware it was a horror comedy. I thought it would be all business, monsters killing and eating people, laying waste to towns and villages, and while there is some of that, there is a lot of slap stick comedy also. The first scene after the credits, is police men repeatedly falling down a hill. To be fair it does look like a pretty nasty hill but not that bad, the theme of bungling police officers seems to be a theme through out the film. I am not really the familiar with South Korean anything, but I think they are making fun of the police, also a few times they poke fun at people who eat organic food, and while I could be offended, I am far too lazy and just thought it was a strange thing to do. Again, some of the nuances in this movie left me scratching my head. I would say easily for the first 45 minutes, I was left wondering why I was still watching, BUT keep watching, it gets good after that... and a bit zany.

They did do a very good job at keeping me guessing, there was one scene where I totally though "uh oh, monster vision, that chick isn't going to make it..." but then she did... well sort of. You will see. Also there are some things that just were out of place, but definitely added to the over all whimsical features of the movie, things like a telepathic dog, a whiny guy getting repeatedly injured but never killed despite other people having one of those things happen and they are totally dead, a crazy lady with a doll who I still have no clue why she was even there, and a wandering grandma.

I was very interested to see the vast array of scenery they had and used, all the sets were very realistic, and I enjoyed all the adorable little Asian vehicles. There is one scene that is confusing with mostly american vehicles, but I just chalked it up to them being imports.

The CGI for the giant boar is actually really well done, so well done that I am not sure it is actually all computer generated, there might be some physical effects thrown in for close ups, like its ridiculously scary pig teeth. When it is running it looks decent though, I was pleasantly surprised that it looked so realistic, I suppose after the last couple movies I watched and their down right ridiculously bad CGI, something better had to come along.

When all is said and done, I would say give this movie a watch if you are into horror comedies, Asian horror, or monster movies. Also if you want to feel like you are in the movie it couldn't hurt to have some Korean barbecued pork handy to chow down on! Beware of that piglet thought, you will see what I mean.

Thanks for sticking with me, 'til next time!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Black Forest, 2012, Staring Tinsel Korey, Dhaffer L'Abidine, and Oliver James. Directed by Patrick Dinhut

Monday, December 28, 2015

I came across this "gem" on Netflix earlier today. The cover art looked promising, the story sounded like it might be good, I love fairytales, and I am always interested in paranormal happening in forests. The premise was promising, so, I popped this one on and I was pretty excited! 

It started off awesomely enough, comic book like illustrations of forest creatures, spooky trees and other creatures... and that sadly was the best part of the film for the most part. Yes, you read that right, the opening credits were sadly the best part, at least in my opinion. I was hoping that this would be something in the ilk of "Troll Hunter"( it is no secret how much I love mockumentaries), my hope was very misplaced.

Right away, it starts with people running from something and trying to get into a VW beetle, and it has that feel, like when you are watching a movie or a television program and you are astounded that the acting is just a bit too over the top and then suddenly someone yells "CUT!" The shot pans out, and the aforementioned actors are actors ACTING like actors in a production in a production... except, in this, it never happens, instead something gigantic slams into the top of their car and then something "spooky" happens.

Fast forward (or maybe not, who knows) and we meet one of several unremarkable stereotypical people in a group of people who sign up to go to a fairy mound on the eve of the summer solstice. In this group, there is a "Handsome" Doctor, a well todo banker, his young wife and their infant daughter (yes, it is the smartest idea to take your infant daughter to see the awesome fairies in a foreign country in the middle of a field with several other strangers who may or maynot be part of a human trafficking ring), the even younger nanny (who of course has that, "I'm so hot" vibe), and bringing up the rear so to speak is two "nerds" who are studying pagan something or another. They all are given feathers as tickets to get in (because you need tickets to get into this magical field gathering) and then fast forward again, to night time.

This is where all the crap hits the fan and we get our first look at some ok computer graphics that are about what you would expect from SYFY. I can't really say much more without spoiling everything, but the one thing that did amuse me greatly is the "witch" is a very close facsimile of Mama Midnite, the cabin is also pretty spot on, other than that I was mostly just annoyed. The things that should have been scary weren't, the 7 dwarves went a different direction than I thought they would, but it still wasn't that scary. The werewolf (?, or wolf or... I am not sure) was very twilight trailer-esque, and the troll I didn't even get to see except for his hands. Also the sets just weren't as menacing as I thought they easily could have been, they were like less colorful, less moody, cast off sets from Tim Burton's "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory". Mostly what clued you in that it was "fairyland" was random fake flowers and fake red and white toadstools, occasional there are trees that move, but not as often as I would have liked. 

Also to my annoyance, most of the "stories" were just jumbled pieces from here and there. I feel like if you were going to go that direction, you easily could have found some much more horrendous fairy tales to take pieces from because if nothing else people would have been even more confused and would have had to do research to see where they came from and found some new fairytales to read. The could have easily used some of the less known Grimm's tales, or how about a couple from Basile or Asbjornsen and Moe?

I will stop my rant for now, I wish I could suggest this one, and I guess I can, but know, that much like being stuck inside a fairyland or a UFO, these will be 2 hours of your lives that will disappear and you never will get back. Proceed with caution!

Til next time!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Where did Marlena go and a Vampire triple feature review.

Monday, December 14, 2015
I feel terrible that I have not Blogged since the beginning of October. I apologize for that. I am sure you have guessed October is a busy month around the mausoleum and expected blog posts to be fewer, but I did not foresee being amiss all of November and half of December too.

I am very sorry, November lead to some unforeseen changes in my work situation and my health and although it is for the better (at least the work situation change), it was unexpected and I needed to wrap my head around it.

I suppose I could have blogged about it, but I don't really take any comfort from letting people know my personal problems, or their sympathies. I prefer to work through it and move on, which is exactly what I have done and now here I am!

I have prepared a vampire triple feature review for you all, of 3 avant-garde (or at least uncommon) vampire movies! I hope you enjoy them, and I will be eager to read your comments! I missed you all!


Only Lovers Left Alive, 2013, Starting Tilda Swinton, Tom Hiddleston, and Mia Wasikowska. Directed by Jim Jarmusch.

First up in my, "Vampire Triple Feature" is "Only lovers left Alive", written and directed by Jim Jarmusch. 

When I decided I was going to write this triple feature, because lets face it, I owe you guys big time in the post department, I thought that rather than doing the "classic" type vampire movies I would lead more toward the avant-garde side of things, because lets face it, even though vampires have been watered down and more mainstream for the past few years, there are still some original ideas out there, even if it is more original based on story than the actual vampires themselves. I also didn't want to swim too far out into the deep end, because I am sure some of you would love to hear all about the wonder the is Robovampire, but I am going to keep it just slightly off the beaten path. Of course if you would like me to go more in depth, I happily can later. Now back to the movie at hand.

O.L.L.A. has a big name cast, which really was the icing on an already slightly misshapen cake, but aside from this, I found it kind of like the vampire version of "How Wanda got her Groove Back" or at least what I imagine it to be, because I have not actually ever watched it. 

In Jim Jarmusch's world, vampires are pale, thin, and don't wash their hair as much as one would expect. Tom Hiddleston's character, Adam, is a shut in, who lives in a boarded up house in Detroit. Tilda Swinton's, Eve,  character is outgoing and hanging out in Tangiers with her friend/ role model/ maker, it is never really addressed. They have been separated obviously for awhile, but when Eve notices that Adam seems to be depressed, she goes to call on him. There is something that I think is suppose to allude to the fact they all sort of have a mind link of some sort, but it is just that, an allusion.  They seem to appreciate being together, and even though they are quite different they aren't upset that they are and just do what they do.

Basically this is just following the day to day workings of vampire life. It isn't super eventful, but there is something to be said about a movie that isn't trying to reinvent everything. I did like the allusion to needing to be invited in to a house, symbolized by removing ones gloves instead. It makes it seem more... cozy? Also interesting is that they refer to humans as "zombies" for whatever reason.

At one point Eve's little sister Ava shows up and causes some trouble, but it really isn't that big of a catastrophe.

All and all I didn't mind this movie, it is quiet, has a decent sound track, and the sets are very realistic, there isn't much whimsy in them, just the personalities of the people in them. It is a good movie to have in the background, but I don't imagine inviting my friends over to watch it (who am I kidding, like I have friends other than the puppets and my pets.) 

If  you like your vampires broody, musically inclined, and well read and you have a voyeuristic side for people watching. Give this one a look.

A Girl walks home alone at night, 2014, starring Sheila Vand and Arash Marandi. Directed by Ana Lily Amirpour.

Next up in my "Vampire triple feature" is "A girl walks home alone at night" written and directed by Ana Lily Amirpour.

I am going to say right away, this movie is in a foreign language (possibly Persian, but I am no scholar in middle eastern languages by any means) so if you are not wanting to read subtitles this is not a movie to even tangle with unless of course you speak the language it is in! Also, this movie is in black and white, which many of you know I am quite a fan of (call me nostalgic) however if you are not a fan, again, just an FYI.

I had heard a lot of hype around this movie, so I figured I should finally get around to watching it. It had a cat in it so that earned it points right off the bat (oh ho, bat, as in vampire, but not really, there are not bats that I know of in the movie.) It is set in from what I have read is a ghost town called "Bad City" which is basically mostly where horrible people live, but there are a couple good ones mixed in.

I had also read some where this movie was "feminist." I suppose it could be called that, but, really the vampire girl saves a prostitute twice. I am not sure, if that makes this movie feminist however, because maybe she just doesn't have a taste of eating women, or maybe she just felt sorry for her, because she wasn't a terrible person and she was having a rough couple of days.

The sets in the movie are inserting to me, just because the closest I have ever been to Iran was Turkey, and it was much more lush looking than these scenery in this movie was. I tend to avoid deserts, because they make me depressed, not enough greenery.

This movie is low on the gore scale, there are a couple feeding scenes, however they are not really that bad, and since they are in black and white it makes them look more artistic than horrific. I was glad the cat was ok, I was worried for a little bit that he might end up not making it to the end.

The score/ sound track was very unnoticeable, but that doesn't mean it wasn't good, it just really didn't stand out to me at all.

The characters were what they should have been, and they seemed to play their parts well. I honestly didn't really feel any compassion for any of the characters, like I think I was suppose to. I chalk that up to personal issues though. The dialogue was usually well composed, but there was a couple times where it seemed awkward or forced.

With all that said this movie left me having flashbacks to 1994's "Nadja" not only because it was filmed in black and white, but it has that grungy independent starkness (probably because they both are independent films) so prevalent in movies like this. It certainly wasn't bad, but I don't think I will be watching this one again soon. Maybe on a day I am feeling more focused it might be better to try again. Check it out for yourselves though and see what you think. I might be completely of the mark.