The True Game of Death (1979)

Yep. We’re doing Brucesplotation again. Look; theres honestly so many of them with such wildly varying quality that frankly. I cant NOT cover them. they’re such a fascinating concept to me. I touch upon this in my review for the film itself but…can you actually imagine a celebrity known for a VERY specific thing dying. and rather than cementing there talent for the work they produced. 2 dozen studios launch knock off versions of the exact same act while TRYING to make out that the now dead celebrity is in someway tied to the movie (Chevviesploitation lives on in our minds, hearts and souls.)

I just find the whole thing a REALLY weird concept and like a moth to a flame I just keep having to come back to it. That and im not going to lie…I own a metric crap ton of these movies via hauls i’ve inhereted over the years. So yeh! “The True Game of Death” one of the more boring and bizzare moves from the genre. basically a near shot for shot remake of “Game of death” but with way more slow-mo, all the expensive scenes missing and slightly crappier direction. is it the worst Brucesploitation film in the world? well. of all the ones i’ve seen and reviewed for this channel yes. yes it is…at least so far.

The UK big box ex-rental cover for this release is way better than this poster, unfortunately my VHS copy was super faded and there wernt any high res copies online. So the poster’s the best I have to work with. It’s not offensively bad. it’s just not my thing.

The “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” (1969) Comedy Dining Experience

So! after what seems like literally forever (about 7 months by all accounts) both myself and Ben were finally reunited (And it felt SO good!) lockdown restrictions in the UK eased off for a little while and so with mere days before our city entered a Tier 3 restriction (Here meaning, no mixing indoors, no driving to local beauty spots and NO comedy dining experiences) Ben came over to my house and we bashed out 3 of these rapid fire to ensure that at the absolute worst we had commentaries up to and including February.

Shortly after the restrictions came into play were FINALLY able to secure Ben a laptop meaning that for now…we’re able to work together remotely baby yeh! and we’ve recorded another 3 (at the time of writing) over the internet (Huzzah!) with just a couple of gaps in the calendar left to fill before I can take my foot off the gas for a bit and take things niiiiice and smooth.

So! here’s On her majesty’s secret service! it was the first one we recorded since meeting back up. and we had a lot of fun with it (if we’re being egotistical we both said we really enjoyed doing this one and we think its ace and top IDST)

While not strictly a poster, this piece of fan art is REALLY something special!…unfortunately I couldnt find the name of the owner. so if you made this. please let me know and I’ll be more than happy to credit you!

Earth Vs The Flying Saucers (1956)

I’ve been meaning to cover a classic 50’s or 60’s B movie since the year started but honestly, between the restoration work and the lockdowns I just havent found the time to really truely knuckle down and get one sorted out. That was until the Horror channel in the UK decided to run a “Sci-Fi weekender” 2 days of non stop science fiction movies, all of them pretty much classics (Either famously or infamously so) and pretty much all of them being ones I’d never seen before.

This was the first time I got to see movies like “The Giant Claw” (which honestly blew my mind and I cant BELIEVE it isnt out in the UK on DVD or Bluray) and The Incredible shrinking man. But this time I thought rather than going low. i’d try my hand at covering a RESPECTED B-movie classic (Oh I’ll never work in this town again…) and Earth Vs the Flying saucers was just the right side of campy but well made to fit the bill! While I havent covered a tremendously large amount of (what the public would deem) “good” movies on my channel. I think this is the first “Good” 50’s Bmovie I’ve covered. I was really plesently surprised by it for the most part, it’s a bit slow here and there, but my long term memory of it (I wrote the script for this episode back in April/May time) is a positive one (barring the ending)

This is another film that unfortunately doesnt seem to have an easily available release to watch in the UK outside of streaming. but if it ever does get a release I’d almost certainly look into picking it up. With that in mind I kind of realised this time around that I should probably look more into Bmovies of the 40’s to the 60’s as from experience they only ever tend to be one of 3 extremes: Out of the blue phenominal, Tray on head awful or so boring I welcome deaths sweet release…and with odds like that; why WOULDNT I wanna spin the wheel again?

There is a LOT going on in this poster. it’s dramatic, its got a nice vintage feel…but its a tad too busy for me.

The Adventures of Hercules (Hercules 2) (1985)

I’ve been known in the past to do running themes throughout the year when it comes to reviews. In 2018 I covered 4 of the original Live action Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movies. and while im currently working on next years episodes I have have an idea in mind that im working on (No Spoilers!) But this year? I thought i’d keep it nice and simple and cover both of Luigi Cozzi’s Hercules movies. I covered the First entry in this pairing of totally absurd movies at the very start of the year back in Season 7 and it seemed only natural in the home stretch up to the end of the year to revisit the series for it’s final 1985 outing.

im not going to beat around the bush, in my personal opinion it probably isnt as good as the original. but what elements do work in it’s favour really shine out as a great example of absolute batshit insane movie making. This was a movie that literally wasnt supposed to exist. It came about last minute as a result of Cozzi doing a quite good job on a movie that just so happened to have Lou Ferrigno on board. how many movies do you know get fully greenlit based on a days test filming for a completely different movie and a treatment that was written on the equivolent of the back of a napkin. Crazy! but! here it works fantastically. and while I dont think Hercules 2 is as good as the original movie. as a double feature? this pair work tremendously well!

The Poster is also another example of not quite being as good as the first one. but hay! it tells you pretty much everything and nothing about what your getting yourself into…so kudos on that front.

The “Hocus Pocus” (1993) Comedy Dining Experience

Happy Halloween everyone! Yes it’s late, Yes it’s nearly December. but goddamnit I have to catch up on this damn website one way or another…ANYWAY. This was the VERY LAST commentary that Me, Ben and Laura recorded together before Covid hit the UK in such a way that a full scale national lockdown was called. In fact this is a rather special recording in the sense that it was done literally the night before I was told I would be working from home for the foreseeable and only 4 days before the national lockdown was called. We spent the evening together, ate pizza, hung out, drank and laughed our asses through what was probably the last group get together we’re likely to have this year and for the forseeable.

While their are more commentaries on the way its been a bit of a trial and error process to get them done, in the interim we trialled doing these remotely with mixed results due to lack of hardware. one episode worked fine, one episode had problems and one was unusable. Between you and me, when the restrictions were at their lowest and we were allowed to meet indoors in groups of 6 or less Ben was also able to pop round to get 3 more recordings done with me which should take us up to February at least. But as a way of safeproofing the show going forward, just before the 2nd lock down kicked in 3 days ago (Thursday the 5th of November) I managed to secure a 2nd hand laptop that with a bit of TLC and some part replacements is now running better than my own work laptop and Bens now hooked up and *Touch wood* should be able to record remotely MUCH MUCH more smoothly than before.

We’ll know the answer in a couple of days when we do a full audio test. but for now. thats the basket we’re putting all our eggs into as it’s looking unlikely we’re going to be able to meet up again until early next year at the soonest.

Anyway; I’ve gone a bit too much! here’s Hocus Pocus! we had a real blast doing this one, and we spend the majority of it talking about our old halloweens. which was really nice.

The Poster for this movies brilliant. but this promo shots most excellent too!

The “You Only Live Twice” (1967) Comedy Dining Experience

Well! once again due to a HELL of a lot of things going on in my life theres been a slight delay in getting these episodes up on the site. BUT! that ends today! as I bring you the next entry in our Bond movie marathon! this and the next episode due up shortly were both the last 2 episodes me and Ben recorded together before the first Lockdown took effect. They were recorded in very late February/Very early March time back before any social distancing was even a required thing! SO! pop on your nostalgia goggles as we head back to a simpler time. when two good friends who live and work in different parts of the same city could sit next to each other in a room and eat sweets from a shared bowl without having to hand sanitize.

This poster is just TOO much!

Garfields Halloween Adventure (1985)

Last year was my first time watching “Garfields Halloween Adventure” it was buried in amongst my most treasured copy of “Eddie Spaghetti’s halloween compilation tapes” and I absolutely fell in love with it pretty much there and then. So I knew this year when it came to taking a bit more of a family friendly look at halloween specials. that my spirit animal would very much have to make an appearence, while it wasnt necissarily in the running initially (In fact; it was the last one I chose to run for halloween this year) im very glad I ultimately chose it, as It really is a wonderful little special that still holds up remarkably well even to this day.

Short and sweet, it’s slowly crawling back out of obscurity and entertaining a new generation. and really? I think that can only be a good thing.

There are many fan made posters out there for this TV special. but for my money, this ones the best!

13 Ghosts (1960)

Im a total latecomer to the William Castle game. And im not *As* ashamed about that as I could be. the reality is theres a smattering of Castle movies that got released time and time again here in the UK (Im looking at you “House on Haunted Hill!”) but more often than not the bulk of his output would generally either be ignored or released in the absolute crappiest quality it was possible to release DVD’s in.

I’d wanted to watch “The Tingler” for example for absolute years; since my early teens at least, but due to rights, or companies thinking noone was interested in Castle films or whatever the hell reason they could come up with almost NON of Castles films really came out over here. that is until the wonderful people over at “Power House” released volumes 1 and 2 of “The William Castle Collection” and it must be said that, while I didnt go in for them right away (the price was juuuuuuuuuust too steep for me to take a gamble on it) during a recent sale where the price dropped to around £35 I honestly couldnt resist it any longer. As it stands; Volume 1 is one of my all time favourite Bluray releases at the time of writing and I highly recommend you pick it up, as I really do consider it “Essential horror” if your into the genre.

Volume 2 is pretty good fun, but it’s way more schlocky, way less focussed on horror and way more hit and miss for me. While im definitely still glad I own it, Im not nearly as enthused about it in the same way I am for volume 1.

13 Ghosts is arguably the second biggest highlight on the set, and just for the ability to watch all 3 different versions of this film I can definitely recommend checking this one out. it’s not really a lifechanging picture, and if your absolutely in love with the 2000’s remake of 13 ghosts this will probably make you cringe hard. But if you like good hokey 50s and 60s campy horror. this pretty much is a must own!

All of Castles posters from this time vaguely look the same in terms of layout and design. I cant personally say im a massive fan of the look. and it’s the only thing im not massively happy about with the castle set from powerhouse. some newly commissioned artwork probably would have really made these sets sing. As it stands they just have the poster slapped on the cover…which is okay…but it does rather leave me wanting.

The Worst Witch (1986)

So; Halloween 2020 is upon us and this year being an “Off” year we’re once again going for a grab bag of halloween goodies to help kick your month off with a bang! and while all of the movies chosen this year arnt really connected. I have decided to have a bit of a loose theme.

I wanted to try and do more “Family Friendly” movies this halloween. I know a lot of my viewers are parents and quite frequently they struggle to find good horror to show their kids without having to dip into their “adult” collection. So I thought i’d try to help out this year. All the movies featured will be movies that more or less the entire family can tune in to! I really wanted to make it a bit more all encompassing, after all Halloween is supposed to be a time for spooks and scares for all ages!

So here we have “The Worst Witch” the ORIGINAL Worst Witch. and arguably one of the most enjoyable adaptations. probably suitable for younger children (I’d say 5-9 year olds) but theres a TON of campness to help keep Adults on board. I really dug this one…and if certain events around a certain author who ALSO wrote a very popular series about witches and wizards have left you feeling a bit cold. then This series might just be what you need.

Unfortunately this film has never had a decent cover. The original VHS cover is about as good as it gets.

Decoder (1984)

This was one of those movies I’d litereally never heard of until it was right on top of me. I first heard about it around the time I was looking for a decent copy of “Liquid Sky” and when I finally did find it on Vinegar syndromes site this was sort of sat roughly next to it in the “Recommended” section looking all moody and totally my kind of jam…unfortunately that was at the time that I sank nearly $200 into VS sale items (With shipping it pushed it closer to $230) so I decided to leave it…but that didnt stop me picking it up at the very next sale! and im totally glad I did.

It’s a wonderfully weird film and one that i’ve never really experienced before. it’s super hard to explain, but it’s almost like a film that leads more with sound than it does vision. and the pair marry up in such a way that normal movies and TV programmes just…dont. I can only describe it as it feels like a “Whole” experience. like; if one of these elements was missing the film just would be incomprehensible.

So with the next Vinegar Syndrome sale on the horizon. I say; go and look up “Decoder” it’s probably not for everyone. but if you dig it…ohhhh boy you’ll REALLY dig it.

The Official Poster for this movie is a bit too garish for my taste (It’s basically a giant hypno toad) and given that while frogs are a quite important part of this film they arnt THE film. I instead opted to use Vinegar Syndromes newly commissioned art work…which I feel represents the film much more faithfully.