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.

Dont Go In The House (1979)

Well! it’s summertime once again and honestly, im beyond thrilled to be back in the driving seat for our (now annual) summer special! Honestly, not having my usual friday hang out with people as I share that weeks strange flick is always an usual experience, but! needs must while I work away on new episodes for you guys to stretch from September to the end of the year!

I always feel like its a bit of a special occasion when the summer specials come up, it’s a chance to push the boat out, do something a bit off the beat and path and just have a bit of fun with some fantastic creators.

And this years no exception as we have Mike from Rotted Reviews on board to talk about 1979’s Dont go in the house! Mike was an absolute sweetheart through all of this, and I genuinely enjoyed working with him on this slice of fried gold! We talk about it in the video itself, but while this is a VERY fun little movie, it isnt exactly a gold star MUST SEE flick, it’s just quite good fun, and I always enjoy working with collaborators on movies like this as I find it very interesting to see what people make of just “decent” movies. it allows for a much more interesting conversation.

This special also see’s a few changes to “The Red Triangle” it’s our first epiosde in ultra sharp 4k resolution! it’s our first video to feature our brandspanking new “Red Triangle” intro! Our first shakeup of that intro since 2018! (not including our holiday rebrands which were basically just the exact same intos but with either stock snow inserted or coloured with an orange tint!)

Its the first time we’ve used sub bumpers (controversial, I know…but im curious to see if they do work) and we’ve revamped our outro slide, finally retiring our previous slide after 2 years service AND retiring the “Sliding” black and white text motif thats been a part of our outro banners since 2018 as well!

Thats not to mention upgrades in terms of our editing software (whereas “Night of the demon” will hold the title of “First episode we edited on our newly upgraded editing machine”, This episode gets the honour of being the first one we edited using a 4k workflow on a fully paid up version of Da Vinci resolve where we really tested the metal of our new machine!) we also upgraded our mic, retiring our trusty red Focusrite condenser mic (used on and off between 2017 and 2019 before becoming our main mic from 2020 right up to “Night of the Demon”) for a lovely RODE NT1-A Condenser mic, we’ve upgraded our lighting kit for better packing shots AND we’ve upgraded our workflow efficiency with some new tools to help make my life a lot easier in terms of production process and to hopefully take time off rendering and processing.

This is just a brief glimpse into the future of how our reviews will be growing and evolving over the coming weeks/months and hopefully years. and so far, the feedback we’ve recieved has been VERY positive, which honestly, I couldnt be happier about (and thank you so much to everyone who has commented on our refresh, it’s genuinely made me feel so happy!)

So! this was our Summer Special 2022! we’ll be back with a full season starting on September 9th 2022 and I cant wait for you guys to check it out!

Again; super special thanks to Mike for making this review possible, if you enjoyed him here, he has a patreon full of awesome goodies that I highly recomment you check out here!

The original poster is literally a charred cadaver…I couldnt get that past youtubes censorship guidelines…so heres the arrow video art which is just…stunning, Love it!

Night of the Demon (1980)

Welp! for the penultimate episode of this season, the penultimate episode of our 5th anniversairy celebrations AND the last ‘Red Triangle’ of the season to boot! I figured i’d have to go all out and honestly, I dont think I could be happier with this one, Tony from the Video Nasty Project agreed to join us on this one and im BEYOND grateful he dropped by for this one!

Over on his channel he’d previously reviewed this one and mused that he felt the film was poorly represented and thats why it got such a bad rep, at the time it was only available as a VERY ropey transfer dumped on tape in the 80s and disc in the early 2000’s.

Well, when Severin and 88 films announced a ground up remaster from the original elements. I got in touch with Tony in a heartbeat and asked if he’d be interested in re-evaluating and man. he really bought his all to this one.

A genuinely great way to tie things off, a fun exciting movie and a reminder to myself of exactly why I do these things. with only 1 more review to go before we round the season off. we’re hitting the highs now!

I always felt the original artwork was a bit muted, this is much MUCH better.

Doc Shock 2: Electric Boogaloo (Documentary Reviews 2) (2022)

Well; we’re back on the documentaries again, and honestly, it’s been WAY too long. EVERY season since the original “Doc Shock” I’ve sworn BLIND that i’d do another doc shock that season. EVERY. SINGLE SEASON. I’ve sworn id do it, and every time for one reason or another it’s completely fallen through. WELL! for my 5th anniversairy i’d be DAMNED if I was going to let one of the oddities of “The Red Triangle” go unloved! So here we are!

the big downer with this one was unfortunately the copyright aspect of the whole thing, at least 3 out of the 5 documentaries I covered in this video were almost ENTIRELY made up of archive footage. basically narratives built using news stories, old interviews, stock footage. a patchwork of history woven together to tell a story. and the problem with documentaries that are built like that from a critical standpoint is two fold.

First, it makes it difficult to convey exactly WHY the documentary is so good, because the footage isnt strictly indicative of the quality. me showing you news footage of Frank Sidebottom riding on a riverboat or Obama giving an interview wont tell you DIDDLY about what the documentary is like…it just tells you Frank Sidebottom and Obama are in those respective documentaries. and in the case of “The Silent Minority” the footage is SO harrowing, that even though it IS on youtube and available to view in full, I wouldnt feel comfortable showing it for the purpose of recommendation (seriously it’s that hardcore) So this is one of the rare cases where really, for the most part, I felt that including footage was kind of pointless…not that that matters really because…

Secondly; including all this archive footage is basically like trying to will youtubes copyright system to nuke the video. Seriously; it’s bad enough when I cover ONE movie in terms of getting worldwide blocks, takedown notices and other such bunkum. So IMAGINE trying to upload a review of a documentary that uses HUNDREDS of clips from various TV channels, films, internet uploads etc…it’d be a massacre. and one im not entirely interested in trying to clear.

So in the end this ended up being “Audio Only” a little underwhelming…true. But! this isnt a standard review…this is really more a list of recommendations. and I really hope you find a documentary thats right for you!

Out of all of these, I probably enjoyed “Thats Sexploitation” the most, though “Being Frank” is a close second!

Bloody Moon (1981)

In a season of firsts literally 1 week after we did our first Godfrey Ho movie! we’re NOW doing our first Jess Franco movie! and…this was my first ever Franco film many MANY years ago, and having seen a LOT more Franco since then, im inclined to think this is one of his better efforts. Which is a shame because its COMPLETELY out of tone with his other bodies of work.

This is one of those weird movies where Franco wasnt entirely invested in it as a director, so he just does a servicable job of making a horror movie, and it’s fine. its bordering on good even! and compared to his other 6000 movies. Well this is probably one of his best really…but that says more about my opinion on Franco movies than on my opinion of THIS movie.

This is a VERY flawed movie in all honesty. NOT one of the better nasty’s but sometimes it manages to wiggle into “So bad it’s good” terratory with laughable dialogue and kill scenes that make Antropophagus look like Cannibal Holocaust.

I’d say it was worth a watch at least once. but err…yeh, dont expect THAT many more Franco films on the channel…they’re…not my scene.

ICONIC.

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.

Finishing the Complete Tenth Season (2021)

So! We’ve hit a quite significant milestone. At the time of writing we’re now halfway through my 5th year of making content for youtube. and honestly; looking back im left with a simultanious feeling that this has just…always been the way things have been, while also thinking that no time has passed at all. it’s quite an unusual emotional response to describe honestly. I still recall back in 2018 when I was talking to Ben about plans I had for videos that “Wouldnt happen till 2020” and him looking at me as if I was absolutley potty to even BEGIN to suggest such a thing.

But the honest answer is; this channels kind of been my lifeline for the last few years. What started out of a genuine frustration at the lack of detailed information and an almost outright dismissal of bad movies and cult cinema as “Not REAL film” has, five years on, evolved into something much MUCH more than that. Sitting here now in 2022 looking back over the years, at all the absolutely astoundingly good friends i’ve made as part of this project, The film makers and people behind the scenes i’ve had the opportunity to connect with as a result of me reviewing a film they’ve worked on, and the people who’ve been reunited as a result of my simple efforts to try and prove that theres as much educational benefit in deconstructing BAD cinema as there is in deconstructing the mainstay “classics” has left me honestly quite speechless.

All I ever wanted to do was try and share my love and passion for these types of movies to a wider audience and, in turn, hopefully attempt to rebalance the discourse around film theory and studies. I wish we lived in a world where someone could, in a crounded film theory class, openly talk about the cinematography in say “Robot Ninja” or the directional choices in “Theatre of Blood” and be taken with a level of seriousness and acceptance that comes with namedropping things like “Apocalypse Now” or “Drive”.

That isnt to say that im putting those films in the same catagory as each other you understand. Rather; for years theres been a culture of snobbishness around “Cult” cinema in professional and academic settings simply because it either didnt attain mainstream success or it deals with themes that are unconventional from what elder academics would deem “acceptable” with only very few film makers (David Lynch, Jan Svankmajer, Robert Wiene to name a few) being allowed the air of dignity within an academic setting.

To me? if you only watch what academia and the mainstream culture consider to be “Good movies” you’ll ONLY make “Good” movies…and in many ways thats the problem. The history of counter culture cinema is a rich tapestry of experimental and arthouse, a sea of trial and error on various mixed media formats. it’s the story of “Fuck around and find out” to put it bluntly. and is probably responsible for greater changes in the mainstream than most professional critics and lecturers will EVER be willing to admit. And yet; it only ever seems to be “Skimmed” by the people in charge. referenced as an afterthought in the shadow of the “Tarantino’s” and “Von Trier’s”. Pilfered of its “Best bits” with 80% left to wither on the vine or end up the subject of countless articles of mixed quality that purely focus on “HOW CERRRAZY” the film is or how, while we do have to aknowledge that this weird film inspired a much MUCH better film. we also must feel embarrissment or even shame that this original film even existed at all.

Its a systemic problem that even I am guilty of from time to time, and the last 5 years have really been a lesson in reprogramming to try and shake off this “Two Tier” system that the film industry regularly imposes on it’s output. it shouldnt be a case of “There are good films…and those films” rather. There is just film. art. expression. and while we can collectively agree a sliding scale of budget, technicality and complexity I feel more attention needs to be paid to just what CAN be achieved with so little, rather than simply focussing on eyewatering budgets, pixel counts and CGI hoy polloi.

I spent a not insignificant time of Season 10 covering the world of SOV cinema. A much maligned field because of its low budget, dependency on horror, gore or titlation to get bums on seats and an overdependency on references to other movies to try and sell people on a sense of familiarity. Its equally been one of the most interesting, thought provoking and inspiring experiences i’ve ever gone through. these people were “true” film makers. visionaries. creative souls who tried their damndest to make what was, to them, the best damn movies they possibly could on budgets that wouldnt even cover a QUARTER of a modern shoots catering budget FOR A DAY. they HAD to be creative because there simply wasnt an alternative. and the results are a testimony to the craft that I feel should be better recognised by academic bodies and not simply dismissed as “Fodder for the experimental film crowd”

So I say “Make Bad/Cult film relevent” challenge the so called “Authority” explain your workings, change the discourse and help make the world of film a better and more inclusive place for people who dont just think with there wallet or ride the coat tails of passing trends. give Bad and Cult cinema a reverence BEYOND it’s disposability. Because I guarentee, the sooner that modern film makers start to look at BAD films as a friend and NOT a tool or an aesthetic. the sooner the current rut that hollywood and the film making system has found itself in will evaporate.

Season 10 was a season of growth and development for the channel. and while we’re still a rather small and plucky channel, we’ll continue to try and push the discussion as far as we can take it.

Heres to 10 seasons, 5 years, to the good times and to hopefully many years more.

Dan.

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…

The Driller Killer (1979)

Of all the film I covered this season, probably the film that surprised me the most was “Driller Killer”. Generally when I go into a film with established expectations I usually come away either dissapointed or bitterly angry that a films been missold to me. But “Driller Killer” actually had the opposite effect on me.

After being told by at LEAST half a dozen people that this film was a “Slog”, was “Unremarkable”, was “A one watch film” my expectations were VERY low for this thing. I was expecting 80-90 minutes of unrelenting gore, little to no plot, sub part direction. just a gory trash film designed to shock for the sake of shock.

But what I actually found was quite a nuanced film that, while not shying away from gore, manages it in a very effective way. Using it sparingly and instead preferring to focus on psychodrama and the relationship structure between our core characters. this was actually a pretty decent little drama/thriller and had it had literally ANYTHING ELSE as a VHS cover in 1984, it’d probably have flown completely under the radar and gone unnoticed.

A raw and quite powerful watch. while I think the theatrical cut is about as much of this film as I can stomach. having an extrended cut on the Arrow Bluray is a very nice touch. If your coming to this film for horror, you’ll probably be dissapointed. but if your looking for a drama with bloodier elements I’d say this is actually a pretty solid watch.

I had to use Arrows newly commissioned artwork for the thumbnail on this review. Personally I vastly prefer the original artwork. But youtube frown on thumbnails that feature a guy literally getting drilled through the head.