Sunday, April 20, 2014

Night Of The Lepus (1972)(MGM)

Night of the Lepus, also known as Rabbits, is a 1972 American science fiction horror film based on the 1964 science fiction novel The Year of the Angry Rabbit. Released theatrically on October 4, 1972, it focuses on a group of people in a small Arizona town battling thousands of mutated, carnivorous killer rabbits. The film was the first science fiction work for both producer A.C. Lyles and director William F. Claxton, who both came from Western film backgrounds. Various character actors from Westerns the pair had worked on were brought in to star in the film, including Stuart Whitman, Janet Leigh, Rory Calhoun, and DeForest Kelley. Shot in Arizona, Night of the Lepus used domestic rabbits filmed against miniature models and actors dressed in rabbit costumes for the various attack scenes.

Before its release, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) renamed the film from its original name of Rabbits, and avoided including rabbits in most promotional materials to try to keep the mutant creatures being featured a secret. However, the studio itself broke the secret by releasing rabbit foot themed promotional materials before the release. Widely panned by critics for its premise, bad directing, stilted acting, and laughable special effects, the film's biggest failure was considered to be the inability to make the rabbits seem scary. The film has gained cult status for its badness, and was released to home video for the first time in October 2005 when it was released to Region 1 DVD.

Find Out More @ Night Of The Lepus (1972)(MGM)

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Ryusei Ningen Zon (Zone Fighter)(1973)(Toho)

Zone Fighter, known in Japan as Ryūsei Ningen Zone, is a tokusatsu science fiction superhero television series. Produced by Toho Company Ltd., the show aired on Nippon Television from April 2 to September 24, 1973, with a total of 26 episodes, it was cancelled due to the oil crisis of 1973. This was Toho's answer to not only the popular Ultra Series, but the Henshin Hero phenomenon started by shows like Kamen Rider and Android Kikaider. The previous year, Toho had just made their successful first superhero show, Rainbowman. The series was also notable for its guest appearance by Toho's own Godzilla, as well as two
other Toho monsters, King Ghidorah and Gigan.

Godzilla guest-stars in Episodes 4, 11, 15, 21 and 25. Gigan fights with Godzilla in Episode 11, and King Ghidorah appeared in a separate two episodes (5 & 6, a two-parter).

The last appearances of the original King Ghidorah and Gigan (who would return in updated form 31 years later in Godzilla: Final Wars).

Takes place in the same continuity as the original Godzilla series, according to Toho Co., Ltd.

Find Out More @ Ryusei Ningen Zon (Zone Fighter)(1973)(Toho)

Friday, April 18, 2014

All Monsters Attack (aka Godzilla's Revenge)(1969)(Toho)

Ichiro is a highly imaginative, but lonely, boy growing up in urban Tokyo. Every day he comes home to the empty apartment he shares with his railroad worker father and his restaurant hostess mother. His only friends are a toy maker name Shinpei Inami and a little girl named Sachicko. The only other kids that are around is a gang of kids led by a bully named Gabara. To escape his loneliness, Ichiro imagines that he is on Monster Island where he befriends Minya, the son of Godzilla. It is through his daydreams that he watches Godzilla and Minya fight other monsters, including one also named Gabara who is just as bad a bully as the one that is tormenting Ichiro. It is through these daydreams that he learns that it is okay to fight back and face his fears. These lessons also help him to outwit a couple of bumbling bank robbers as well as finally have the guts to stand up to Gabara and his gang.

This was deliberately set out be a Godzilla film aimed at small children for release during the Christmas season. Among the more unusual aspects of the film was the casting of Hideyo Amamoto as a toy designer and friend to the little boy. Amamoto was normally cast in other films as the slimiest of criminals, gangsters and henchmen.

The "Monster March" theme song from the Japanese version is composed by Genta Kano, best known for composing the theme song to the Japanese classic, Tokyo Drifter (1966).

Find Out More @ All Monsters Attack (aka Godzilla's Revenge)(1969)(Toho)

Godzilla Celebration Screening In Little Tokyo With Koichi Kawakita

by Armand Vaquer

Above, special effects director Koichi Kawakita and Armand in 2000. 

A special Godzilla celebration will take place in Little Tokyo in Los Angeles on Saturday, May 3. Anime News Network reported:
Los Angeles, CA – April 16th, 2014 - In celebration of Godzilla's 60th anniversary, Anime Jungle presents two special screenings of GODZILLA at the Aratani Theater in Los Angeles on Saturday, May 3rd. The 3:00pm screening will be dubbed. And the 6:00pm screening will be with the original Japanese audio with English subtitle. The screenings are planned as a part of Fiesta Matsuri by JACCC (Japanese American Cultural and Community Center) in Little Tokyo. 
They will invite two guest, Mr. Koichi Kawakita, director of Special effects and Mr. Norihiko Iwasaki, Marbling Fine Arts Co. Before each screening, Mr. Kawakita and Mr. Iwasaki will give a live demonstration of Special Effect with miniatures “Model and Camera Demonstration.”
Reading further down the article, it appears that the Godzilla movie will be 1989's Godzilla vs. Biollante, not 1954's Godzilla.

To read the full article, go here.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

"The Monster Movie Fan's Guide To Japan" Pre-Vacation Season Discount Sale

by Armand Vaquer

Above, Yuu Asakura with The Monster Movie Fan's Guide To Japan. Photo by Armand Vaquer.
It's that time again! The following news release will be hitting early tomorrow morning:
With vacation season only a few months away and the opening of Legendary Pictures/Warner Bros. "Godzilla" coming May 16, Armand Vaquer, author of "The Monster Movie Fan's Guide To Japan," announced a pre-vacation season discount of 20% off the guide's cover price, making the cost of the book $12.00, plus $2.00 shipping and handling, for a total of $14.00 each. 

"As vacation season is fast approaching and with the high awaress of the new "Godzilla" movie, it is time to launch the pre-vacation season sale of "The Monster Movie Fan's Guide To Japan,"" stated Vaquer. "From Friday, April 25 to Monday, June 16, the travel guide will be available at a 20% discount directly from me." 
"The Monster Movie Fan's Guide To Japan" is the world's only Japan travel guide tailored to fans of Japanese science-fiction and fantasy films who want to see locations and landmarks from the movies. 
Orders postmarked Friday, April 25 through Monday, June 16 are entitled to the discount. 
To order, send your check or money order payable to Armand Vaquer at 18618 Collins Street, #105, Tarzana, California 91356.
Depending upon how many copies sell, this may be the last sale (it may be considered a clearance sale) of this edition as I am working on an updated/revised edition that will likely be ready later this year. Once the stock I have on hand on this edition is gone, it is gone!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Legend Of Boggy Creek (1972)(Charles B. Pierce)

In 1972 Charles Pierce, an ad salesman from Texarkana, borrowed $160,000 from a friend who owned a car dealership, to make a movie about a local legend in Arkansas, that he had heard about growing up. Armed with a hand-held camera, and the local residents, who played themselves, Pierce set out to create a pseudo-documentary about recent encounters with a Bigfoot-like creature in and around the small town of Fouke.

Amazingly enough, Pierce, with no experience at making movies, was able to create a very believable and scary movie. His amateur actors, who obviously drew inspiration from their real-life encounters, display such fear, that the viewer really gets taken in by their raw emotion.

Pierce's camera work and editing really creates a genuine feeling of terror. His wisdom in only showing the monster from a distance, and in the shadows, adds to the mystery and the overall eerie feeling of the film.

There has been renewed interest in "The Legend of Boggy Creek" due to a recent episode of "Monster Quest" which focused on the "Fouke Monster" aka "The Swamp Stalker of Boggy Creek". The program showed several scenes from the film and also featured reenactments of some of the events that it documented.

Find Out More @ The Legend Of Boggy Creek (1972)(Charles B. Pierce)

Godzilla x Mothra x Mechagodzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (2003)(Toho)

Kiryu is undergoing repair modifications after its battle with Godzilla. Prime Minister Hayato Igarashi accepts Lead Scientist Yoshito Chujo's choice to replace the Absolute Zero Cannon with a powerful Tri-Maser.

The Shobijin (Mothra's twin fairies) warn the Japanese government that Godzilla continues returning to Japan because they used the original Godzilla's bones in Kiryu's design. If they return the bones to the bottom of the sea, Mothra would gladly take Kiryu's place in defending Japan, but if they do not, Mothra will declare war on humanity. Soon enough, Kamoebas, a giant mata mata turtle, is found washed ashore on a Japanese beach. It is determined by the
wounds on Kamoebas' neck that Godzilla killed it. Godzilla and Mothra fight, but Godzilla seems to have the upper hand. With the repairs finished just in time, Kiryu manages to even the odds, but Godzilla manages to knock out both monsters.

Meanwhile, on Infant Island, two twin Mothra larvae hatch from Mothra's egg, and rush to help their mother. As Kiryu was being repaired, the larvae try to hold Godzilla off, but Mothra is killed by Godzilla's atomic breath while trying to save her children. Just in time, Yoshito and the humans repair Kiryu, who stabs Godzilla's chest with a drill, causing Godzilla to bleed. Godzilla roars in pain, and the larvae begin to bind him up in web.

Find Out More @ Godzilla x Mothra x Mechagodzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (2003)(Toho)

My 23 year obsession with the Loch Ness monster - and how I missed my big chance to prove she exists

From Yahoo News UK

A full time Loch Ness monster hunter has dedicated 23 years of his life just to catch a glimpse of her - but didn't have his camera with him the one time Nessie turned up.

Professional Nessie hunter Steve Feltham, 51, from Wimborne, Dorset quit his job fitting security cameras to spend his days searching for Nessie and living on the banks of Loch Ness, Inverness-shire, back in 1991.

The monster-hunter became obsessed with the legend of Nessie after a family holiday to the Highlands when he was just seven - and made it his life's mission to prove she exists.

But after 23 years of patiently watching the loch, Steve still doesn't have any proof of the beast's existence - because he forgot his camera the day he did spot the monster in 1993.

Steve said: "Gutted is an understatement for that moment. It was the moment I had always dreamed of since I was a young boy - but I didn't catch it on film.

"Ever since I have dedicated my life to seeing Nessie again - and this time I am ready with my camera."

For the past 23 years Steve has carefully studied the waters of the Loch in the hope of catching a glimpse of his beloved Nessie.

But Steve couldn't believe his eyes when he caught a glimpse of Nessie after just 18 months of living on the banks of Loch Ness.

Steve said: "I was sitting on the shore near the Fort Augustus end of the Loch when something went past the bay, through the water.

"It was like a torpedo shot and it had some weight behind it, hitting through the waves.

"Nothing in Loch Ness could create a disturbance like that- apart from Nessie.

"I just sat there in amazement. It was the moment I had always been waiting for and I am kicking myself for not taking a photo.

"Since then I have been by the Loch with my camera poised, every day, come rain or shine. I won't let an opportunity like that pass me by again."

It was childhood holiday to the Scottish Highlands in 1970 which sparked a lifelong fascination with the Loch Ness Monster for Steve.

Steve said: "I remember standing on the banks of Loch Ness while on holiday with my family and watching a big expedition of Nessie hunters set up a platform with a huge metre long camera.

"I remember being fascinated by the mystery of the monster and I was hooked from there."


Harrison Ford Doesn’t Care If Han Shot First; Expresses His Interest in Possibly Returning for Blade Runner 2

From Collider

Yesterday, Harrison Ford participated in a Reddit Ama to promote the upcoming Showtime docuseries Years of Living Dangerously, which is about climate change. During the Ama, Ford fielded plenty of questions about his career, personal life, interests, and various other topics. Ford came off online as he usually does in interviews: charming when asked good questions, and not suffering fools when it comes to bad, fanboyish questions. My personal favorite was when someone asked, "Who shot first? Han Solo or Greedo?" and Ford responded, "I don't know and I don't care." And if you think he's being a curmudgeon, he also says he was happy to take small roles in Anchorman 2 and The Expendables 3 because they looked like fun even though he hadn't seen the previous movies. Hit the jump for more including Ford's thoughts on Blade Runner 2.


Doctor Who British Icon 12-Inch Dalek with Lights and Sounds

Doctor Who British Icon 12-Inch Dalek with Lights and Sounds

$84.99 - Entertainment Earth

"Seek! Locate! Annihilate!"
12-inch tall Dalek is beautifully printed with the Union Flag.
Produced exclusively for Doctor Who's 50th anniversary year.
Limited edition features lights and sounds, plus poseable arms, head, and eye stalk!

Could this be the ultimate Doctor Who collectible? The Doctor Who British Icon 12-Inch Dalek with Lights and Sounds is produced in limited quantity exclusively for Doctor Who's 50th anniversary year. This Dalek is beautifully printed with the Union Flag to celebrate the Daleks as a British icon. The limited edition features lights and sounds, plus poseable arms, head, and eye stalk!

Sounds include the following 8 classic Dalek phrases:
"Seek! Locate! Annihilate!"
"Seek! Locate! Destroy!"
"You will obey the Daleks… obey, obey!!"
"Halt or you will be exterminated!"
"You are an enemy of the Daleks!"
"We are the Supreme Beings."
"Exterminate! Exterminate! Exterminate!" (with gun-firing sound effects)
"Exterminate!" (with gun-firing sound effects)

Size: 12-inches tall

Tom Baker: I’d do more Doctor Who

From Radio Times

Just two years after departing Doctor Who in 1981, Fourth Doctor Tom Baker turned down the chance to make a brief comeback in 30th anniversary adventure The Five Doctors (the BBC inserted unused footage of him instead).

Having so recently left the role of his life, Baker didn’t see the appeal of returning to share it with other actors – and he also had his differences with incoming producer John Nathan-Turner.

A surprise role in last November’s 50th anniversary special The Day of the Doctor, alongside Matt Smith, was his first television appearance in Doctor Who since his regeneration.

Perhaps the experience whetted his appetite – or perhaps the 80-year-old has mellowed in his old age – but Baker now says that if more opportunities to star in the TV show were to come his way he could be keen.

"I turned down the five Doctors because it wasn’t long since I’d left – I had left Doctor Who because I think I’d run my course," said Baker, speaking at the launch of the Horror Channel's season of classic Doctor Who episodes. "I didn’t want to play 20 per cent of the part. I didn’t fancy being a feed for other Doctors – in fact, it filled me with horror.


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Lizardmen In North America (1878 - Present)

In June of 1988, a sixteen-year-old boy named Christopher Davis was attacked by a 7-foot-tall, scaly monster, while changing a flat tire near the Scape Ore Swamp in South Carolina.

The "Lizard Man of Scape Ore Swamp" (also known as the Lizard Man of Lee County) reportedly tried to attack the youth's car as he tried to escape.

Reports of the creature, and sometimes creatures, continue to this day in the area, the latest being reported in 2005 and 2008.

Other areas of the country that seem to be home to lizard-like humanoids include Loveland, Ohio (The Loveland Frog), Thetis Lake, British Columbia, Canada (Thetis Lake Monster) and also in California.

Local legends of lizard-like races come from various periods of human history. There is the Cecrops, the mythical first King of Athens who was half-man-half-snake, the Dragon Kings of Chinese mythology, the Nāga in India and the Zahhak, a figure from Zoroastrian mythology, just to touch on a few.

Find Out More @ Lizardmen In North America (1878 - Present)

Sky High (2003)(Toei Co. Ltd.)

Sky High (also known as Skyhigh) is a supernatural action film from director Ryuhei Kitamura. It is based on the manga of the same title by Tsutomu Takahashi and serves as a prequel to a Japanese television drama of the same name, and starring the same actress, Yumiko Shaku. Although the film is a prequel to the series, the film was made while the series was still in production, sometime between the first and second seasons. The film had a clear effect on the direction of the second season, as evidenced in the look and style of Mina/Izuko's second season costuming—more similar to the darker, edgier look she sports in the film, as opposed to the softer, colourful, kimono-like outfit of the first season. The film reveals how the somewhat meek Mina
became the heroic Izuko, as seen in the series (and the film’s action climax).

A serial-murderer is removing his victims hearts and taking them with him. Kanzaki is a detective on the case. The day he is due to be married his fiancé, Mina, is killed displaying the same MO as the other victims. He discovers geneticist, Kudo, and Rei, his evil "secretary" to be the killers. When they have six hearts they will be able to summon demons from beyond the 'Gate of Rage' to grant any wish, but darkness will fall upon the earth. Mina becomes Guardian of the Gate of Rage, and must fight Kudo when he is killed. Kanzaki enters the world of the dead to protect her.

Find Out More @ Sky High (2003)(Toei Co. Ltd.)

Friday, April 11, 2014

"Godzilla" Soundtrack Pre-Order [Spoiler Warning]

The Godzilla soundtrack is now being offered as a pre-order at Amazon and it lists the track titles, which appears to give away how the movie will play out [possible spoilers below]:

1. Godzilla!
2. Inside The Mines
3. The Power Plant
4. To Q Zone
5. Back to Janjira
6. Muto Hatch
7. In The Jungle
8. The Wave
9. Airport Attack
10. Missing Spore
11. Vegas Aftermath
12. Ford Rescued
13. Following Godzilla
14. Golden Gate Chaos
15. Let Them Fight
16. Entering The Nest
17. Two Against One
18. Last Shot
19. Godzilla's Victory
20. Back To The Ocean