Finishing the Complete Eleventh Season (2022)

Well! when it came to the 2nd half of our 5th anniversairy celebrations, I decided to try and do a bit of everything. Part of me wanted to cover movies i’d wanted to do for years (“Flight to Hell“, “Cannibal Girls“, “Camp Blood“) Some were movies i’d promised id do in the future, and then totally forgot to do in the future (“The American Ninja 4“, “Cyborg Cop 2“, “Alien Species“) and some were first time watches that arrived on short notice and genuinely caught me off guard (“Gatwick Gangsters“, “Night of the Demon“, “Dont go in the house“). Hell, we even rounded off the TYTD Reviews episodes by revisiting our very FIRST video for the channel “The Dragon Lives Again” hopefully finally doing justice to a film I’ve long admired and wished my review of could have been better.

It was a celebration of the old, and a look forward to the future of the channel. With this series marking a few milestones, it being the last season edited in 1080p,the last season edited in Adobe Premiere Pro, The last to use the branding we’ve been using now since 2020 across all fronts and the last season predominantly recorded on my focusrite condensor mic, a mic thats pretty much been what you’ve heard me through since AT LEAST 2020, which also made a few on and off appearences between 2017 and 2019 too.

What does the new season hold? well as seen in the review for “Dont go in the house” i’ve had a systems and kit upgrade on almost all fronts! including a new machine, a new mic, new lights for the packaging shots, new editing software and some other new tools to help give a bit more variety. As such we have new branding across all our main shows, we’ll be solely uploading in 4k going forward with better quality sound and visuals, faster processing power means it takes less time to export and convert reviews now, and as such it means we’ll be able to *hopefully* turn things around a bit quicker which’ll give me some time back to be able to enjoy a sunset or eat a well prepared meal!

There have also been some changes that are not quite as pleasent to announce, but here we are. After 2 years or so of monthly uploads and over 50 feature length commentaries, “The Comedy Dining Experience” will be swapping back to an irregular upload schedule, as it was when we first launched in 2018. Part of this is down to the amount of time it takes to edit the commentaries, part of it’s down to lower uptake than our other shows (we’ve had some episodes record less than 20 views after 3 weeks of being live in some cases) and part of it’s down to both myself and Ben just being absolutely ram jammed with stuff going on at the minute. Im in the middle of writing/recording and editing next years episodes (and I still have stuff to finish with Season 12!) and Bens recently had several good news stories that means he’s a lot busier than he was at the moment.

What this means in practical terms is that the Comedy Dining experience isnt going anywhere, it just means that, for the moment at least, it’s going to be on pause while we sort life stuff out, and when it does come back it’ll be likely an “As and when” affair rather than a regularly scheduled “thing” which will allow me more time to work on and refine our reviews, and it means we wont be oversaturating the channel too.

What it ALSO means is that we can do other fun things like monthly game night streams (we’ve done 3 so far and a pilot) AND it’s meant I can start an official Discord from which we’ll be hosting various watchalongs, games nights and other good stuff, alongside chats on everything from good and bad movies to music and weird youtube oddities, so do please tag along for that!

Season 11 marked a change in the wind for the channel, and with Season 12 currently rolling out weekly, I hope your enjoying the direction we’re taking the channel in, I had an absolute blast working on this season, I think it’s one of my favourites i’ve worked on alongside Season 10 and the chance to work and hang out with so many interesting people in collaboration has been an absolute delight. I couldnt have asked for a better 5th year on the platform.

She Freak (1967)

In many ways, I wish I could have been kinder to She Freak, it’s not a BAD movie by any stretch, I just feel like it’s a difficult film to market really, how do you sell a movie thats basically a 60’s remake of Todd brownings “Freaks” but with all the wonderful pathos and artiness that is the chiascuro 1920’s black and white drenched goodness removed?

“Oh, it’s basically “Freaks” but toned down because the MPAA didnt like the original and less interesting” is a HELL of a tagline. Not helped AT ALL, by the fact they hang their hat on the titular “She Freak” who doesnt ACTUALLY materialise ‘freaked up’ until the end, and even then only for 60 seconds max. I know the whole idea is that SHES THE REAL FREAK FOR BEING A JERK YEH? YEH!. But the reality is, it just fell short of really truely winning me over, and in many ways I felt quite let down by it for that.

That being said AGFA have done a BLINDER of a job on this thing, it looks incredible and if you were lucky enough to get the limited edition slip (as seen below) then you were doubly blessed! honestly while the film may not be *THAT* great, the release really cant be faulted.

That slipcover…god DAMN.

Valerie and her Week of Wonders (1970)

This is…unfortunately, one of those few situations where I honestly dont have a lot to say about the behind the scenes of this weeks episode. I know it’s always a bit of a downer when all I can really say is “Watch my review for the full story!” But sometimes it just be like that tho m8.

What I CAN say, and its totally off topic, but hey. your reading this, you’ve got time. is that at the time I was working on this review I was in a quite stressful and unpleasent place. in fact a decent chunk of this year has been rather stressful and genuinely unplesent at times. I quite recently got a promotion at work where i’ve basically been assigned to *fix* a VERY broken aspect of their business. I like fixing things, im ALL for improvement projects and optimisation. It’s my jam…but this thing…this fucking thing…holy shit. it’s BROKE.

As a result I spent the first 3-4 months being basically dragged by the project face first into the dirt. it was sprawling, awkward FULL of weird variations and bylaws that made NO sense. I likened the experience of coming into work as “Stepping on Landmines” because the problems were seemingly invisible till stepped on, at which point you’d be launched into 2-3 weeks of absolute shrapnel induced carnage only recovering long enough to accidentally drag yourself onto another one. it’s been a shit time honestly. it was painful and i’d regularly find myself working WAY overtime and burning myself out over the weekends trying to catch back up with myself only to repeat it all again the next week!

But! in the last 4-8 weeks i’ve finally stopped being blown up quite so frequently, i’ve managed to slim out some of the worst aspects of the system and introduce better, more robust procedures that have not only given me back more time during the day to actually work on larger improvements to save me even MORE time. But have actually (more often than not) given me my evenings back as well. Im still a few weeks off saying im “comfortable” again…but for now at least…I dont feel quite so distressed by it all and im kind of getting back to being happy with my lot again…and if thats the direction im heading in, I can live with that!

Anyway; yeh…kind of…went off on a tangent there. ENJOY!

I love this poster, its so striking, yet so simple.

Gatwick Gangsters (2017)

In many ways; I love films like this. Films that live beyond the screen. films that continue to organically grow like some kind of bizarre trash terrarium. Gatwick Gangsters has a life beyond it’s stream and I live for stuff like that. When I first started researching the movie I had NO idea that Shampagne was working to be an auter media personality. I just thought this was a goofy movie that I could take apart and explain what worked and what didnt and then mark it off my list.

And then the world opened up to me, Shampagnes colourful life and history, the Gatwick Gangsters website, the music videos, the social media presence, the fake IMDB trivia…The fact they’re ACTIVELY in development for a Gatwick Gangsters 2!? its “On Cinema” level artistry at its finest.

I feel it may be a touch overdramatic, but I consider this kind of melding of real living breathing personalities and social media/movie integration bordering on performance art. and while I wish absolutely no ill will to ANYONE involved in the production of these movies. I REALLY hope they dont become self aware. These are the film makers who are best left uncontacted like the tribes in the amazon. Let them exist in their bubble, thinking they’re making the greatest movies ever. and just. let them make the magic.

I feel im almost overstepping my boundaries just by simply talking about this movie here, I need to really push this I DONT want interaction with these people. I want them to keep as far away from me and people like me as possible. I want them to keep making these weird HYPER aggressive movies so that I can pay them £8 for and then just…enjoy the utter UTTER weirdness thats come out of 5-7 years of stop and start film making.

Pandering to people like me or aknowleging your film is being viewed by a VERY specific audience that it wasnt intended to be made for is whats RUINED film makers like Rick Sloan, Tommy Weisau and Barry J. Gillis in the past. If you want proof in motion of what happens when you shut that crowd (I.E Me) out of planning when making your movie look at Neil Breen. who has somehow through adversity managed to make half a dozen movies that are PERFECTLY weird and awful and wonderful in every way. he doesnt humour us. and im absolutely glad for that.

So yeh. Gatwick Gangsters. I had quite an emotional time with this movie, and I hope you go check it out, and; Shampagne. if you do ever see this, ignore it. I really dont know what im talking about.

The “Tommy” (1975) Comedy Dining Experience

This week! Dan and Ben take a look at *arguably* one of the better known Ken Russell movies and one of Ben’s all time favourites as we discuss “Tommy” an absolute blast of a movie that gets surprisingly dark for a movie that quite frankly is so high energy and colourful.

Im not joking. recording this with Ben reignighted my passion for Ken Russell movies, By sheer chance a week after we recorded this I managed to talk to a bootlegger who was able to provide me with HD copies of “The Devils” and “Lizstomania” and I also managed to grab “Altered States” and “Lair of the White Worm” frankly, im in on Russell in a bad way at the minute. But im LOVING it.

I was a fan years ago, but i’d forgotten just how wild and fun his movies could be. and I HIGHLY recommend checking his stuff out whenever you get the chance.

Serpents Lair (1995)

Its amazing really how the memory can cheat when it comes to things from your childhood, I mention in this review that this was one of my first exposures to pornographic material and honestly; when I think back to my memory of seeing this movie nearly 25 years ago now, I remember it being almost as strong as most of the hardcore flicks that now plague the net.

despite not really knowing/understanding what was going on at the time, the tameness of this film 25 years on actually transformed what I remembered as a pretty gritty and erotically charged picture into something laughable. I go into more detail in my actual review. But while I cant really “technically” fault the film. the fact that it sets up SO much promise and delivers on literally almost non of it is frankly insane.

I mean…with the best will in the world, most erotic softcore films at LEAST have the decency to show a little T&A. this film (if memory serves) has one or two blink and you’ll miss it shots of ass, and an sound barrier smashingly brief glimpse of some boobs. Its at this point I feel the need to remind you dear reader. that this is a film about a demon who shags people to death…

As a closing note, I recently managed to uncover the title of another softcore flick I saw a clip from back when I was younger. my entire memory of the film was a scene of a woman being screwed through a partition in a wall with the intent on getting pregnant by the mysterious sperm doner. after that image sat in my head for decades AND with a variety of film buffs being asked about the scene (which I described in vivid detail, to which they had no clue), last year I finally put it to rest. I had in fact seen a clip from the 1999 art house porn film “Romance” which…is probably not a film that a small child should have been watching. but; these are life lessons I guess…

The poster for this movie is in no way reflective of the movie itself.

The “Things” (1989) Comedy Dining Experience

Basically; I subjected Ben and Laura Blind to “Things” because im a sadist who enjoys dumping people into ice baths and watching them wail (in a filmic sense)

After the screening Laura vowed to never do a blind commentary again and Ben wouldnt make eye contact with me. Im not allowed to blind screen again for a while and collabs with Laura have to be to a certain standard going forth.

Personally; I think they should both thank me, given that they’ll now almost certainly never see a film worse than this…unless I find it.

Silent Night Bloody Night (1972)

Well, another year is winding up and once again we’ll be ending things on the channel with a good old fashioned spooky Christmas horror movie. Silent Night Bloody Night surprised me as being, not just a pretty decent christmas horror film, but a border proto slasher that full on predates “Black Christmas” by nearly 2 whole years!

Weirder still it was an early entry in the career of Troma founder Lloyd Kaufman who helped to co-produce the feature. and WEIRDER STILL! given the slice of fried gold that this film is. the fact someone let it slip into the public domain is frankly INSANE to me. this film should be held in WAY higher regard in my opinion…it may be far from perfect. but if it hadnt been for the fact that basically NOONE saw this film when it first came out. it could have easily kickstarted the slasher genre a full 10 years earlier than it did take off.

A great, solid little horror flick. definitely one to watch this festive season, I say go and check out Silent Night Bloody Night. a hidden gem and one of the true hidden slices of horror history!

And…with that we’ve reached the end of the 10th season. it’s been a hell of a ride (there’ll be a “Complete Season” post incoming imminently!) and i’ve loved every minute of it. thank you to everyone who’s helped make this year extra special! the 5th anniversairy celebrations continue on next year with season 11 (currently in production!) and it’s gonna be a big one!

So thank you for dropping by, have the very merriest of christmasses, the very happiest of holidays and the very brightest of new years! and we’ll see you all! in the future! which is where you and I are destined to be!

Stay safe x

This poster says nothing. Im so confused. I love the colour palette though…

Annabelles Wish (1997)

Annabelles Wish was one of those movies that I saw a TON for a brief period in the late 90’s the marketing campaign for this movie in the UK was quite frankly insane. I remember WH Smiths, Woolworths and most places that sold tapes being absolutely rammed with it. I remember the channel 3 childrens block “CITV” having CHRONIC amounts of adverts running for this (probably because CITV was being run by “Carlton” at the time, which was also the company who distributed this film in the UK) for a good year or two it was nothing but wall to wall Annabelle. and honestly; at the time I thought it sounded like a load of old rubbish.

So to sit here nearly 25 years to the day of its release and finally watch this thing to see what all the hubub was about…well…as you can expect the sour laughs of a special that not only missed the mark but full on faceplaneted the concrete could be heard for miles around. This was amazing. a film that really truely tried to be sincere and heartwarming/Bittersweet. Inadvertently becoming DEEPLY troubling and quite confusing to boot! I had NO idea what to expect when I hit play. but I certainly wasnt expecting THAT!

it surprised, shocked and genuinely made me laugh at just how corny and awful it was…and for the last TYTD Reviews episode of 2021…well I couldnt have asked for a more perfect example of what this series is all about.

bloody hell…

This poster is a LIE and will be ceased by the workers as an act of defiance. WE ARE STRONGER TOGETHER COMRADES!