Saturday, December 16, 2006
Monday, September 04, 2006
I recently re-watched a personal favorite movie, Django. A 1966 release directed by the legendary Sergio Corbucci, Django features Franco Nero as the title character in one of the greatest of the spaghetti western genre. The main character was adapted from a comic book anti-hero who drags a mysterious coffin behind him in search of answers and more importantly, revenge. Django, follows suit with other movies of its likeness, mainly the Leone "Dollars" films and yet it mixes its own twists and contributions that lend something to later films like Sabata and the Sartana trilogy. While few similarities can be traced from this film to the unofficial 30+ sequels, Django and its influence can be seen in other outlets like the video games Boktai, Gungrave and Red Dead Revolver, the music of Rancid, the anime series Cowboy Bebop and of course, the "ear scene" from Quentin Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs. (To see another blatant example of Tarantino "borrowing", watch The Bodyguard, starring Sonny Chiba. I digress, that is another post altogether.) While the English dubbing does take away some of the style and feel of both the dialogue and the soundtrack, the movie itself stands alone as a premiere example of a spaghetti western in a time when the genre was really coming into its own and earning a place in cinema history.
Bandits, renegades, stolen gold, a fatal love, a corrupt general, a mysterious stranger dragging a coffin around... this one has it all! Fans of the man with no name films might disagree, but Eismann says add this to the top of your "must watch" list the next time you go to your local video store. If they have any taste or merit at all they will have Django!
Saturday, April 15, 2006
Although they borrowed the band name from the movie title of America's most memorable blonde beauty, the Misfits have cleared a path for dark, evil and ugly that has permiated the music scene around the world for almost thirty years. With arguably some of the most distinguished and influential styles in the punk rock genre, the Misfits created horror punk and set into motion such sub-species as "hardcore" and psychobilly. Picking up the torch that was ignited by the Ramones, the Misfits have wrecked havoc with their aggressive sound, bane looks and retro-horror lyrics. To behold this incursion of devil-locked and leather clad quartets' (now trio) assault on syncopation, is to be in the presence of greatness. My good friend Mark of Exclamation Mark's B Movie Reviews fame, has devoted countless hours of research and enjoyment to pay homage to one of his favorite childhood hobbies/interests... the classic (and often campy) sci-fi/horror show. The Misfits have consecrated their lives to it. You need only to listen to a few chords before you are either utterly disgusted or a life-long fan. I must admit, that it has been a long time since I've slowed down long enough to take in an entire album/CD with the sole intent of enjoying it from beginning to end. But, the other night I did just that. I went to the basement of my house, turned off all the lights, and just blared Static Age, Walk Among Us, American Psycho and Project 1950. It did not rectify my passion for the Misfits. It ravished my exigency of youth and happiness. I realize that I probably share these feelings with a select few, as far as musical choice. But I challenge anyone who reads this blog to seek out what stirs you and really makes you appreciate life.