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July 26, 2016

Movie Review: Inserts (1975)

Directed by John Byrum

Movie Review by Greg Goodsell

In a crumbling Hollywood mansion at the height of the Depression, “Boy Wonder” (Richard Dreyfuss, fresh from Jaws that same year) a faded silent movie director who fell by the wayside with the advent of sound is grinding out porno loops to make ends meet. Alcoholic, slovenly and impotent, Boy Wonder's social circle includes former silent movie star Harlene (Veronica Cartwright, Invasion of the Body Snatchers) with a taste for smack; Rex, the Wonder Dog (Stephen Davies) his stud-for-hire not above paying lip service to those who promise him a part in pictures; Big Mac (a very young and slender Bob Hoskins), his tyrannical producer, and Miss Cake (Jessica Harper, Suspiria) a fresh-faced college girl who knows far more than she lets on.

It's a disastrous morning. Harlene dies abruptly of a heroin overdose before Dreyfus can administer the hardcore footage needed for his opus (the “inserts” of the title). While Big Mac and Rex dispose of Harlene's body, Miss Cake entices Boy Wonder to “put her in the movies.” The second hour of this two-hour film is devoted exclusively to Dreyfus and Harper's bantering, with Harper breaking a world record for continuous nudity by a mainstream actress. Everything ends horribly, with Boy Wonder literally failing to answer the knock upon the door to revamp his career.

As this wholesome synopsis suggests, Inserts was never really intended to be a barn burner with the popular movie-going public. As Julie Kirgo points out in her liner notes for this Twilight Time Blu-Ray release, limited to 3,000 copies, Inserts belongs to the sub-genre of self-loathing Hollywood epics that include such titles as Sunset Boulevard, The Day of the Locust and The Last Tycoon. The motion picture industry, these films proclaim, take the stuff of dreams and turn them into nightmares that prey upon the naïve and innocent.

The motion picture itself – Inserts, suffered a fate that  only Hollywood could dish out. Completed in 1975, after Dreyfuss completed Jaws – he said that he did the film to distance himself from such a crowd-pleasing blockbuster, go figure – Inserts sat on the shelf for two years and was given a limited release, slapped with an “X” rating. The film retains an NC-17 rating today. Rest assured, there's nothing the slightest bit erotic about Inserts. The porno film within the film lies uncomfortably close to a “Snuff film,” with Harlene being manhandled and nearly strangled by Rex. The malaise is thick and palpable throughout. The stuff that fuels this film's narrative has very little to do with sex and erotic fulfillment, boiling down to a war between the sexes. Audiences who lined up to see a hopefully snarky bit of naughtiness set in the 1930's were soundly turned off.  Inserts' thin plot does pay off with a cathartic ending, but it's not possible to leave this film's cramped universe – a mammoth set constructed on British sound stages that plays out in real time, with a slap and the tickle.

Very few extras this time around, this Twilight Time release has English subtitles for the hard of hearing and the film's original theatrical trailer. Inserts remains an interesting curiosity, a grimly uncompromising project on the fragility of dreams and the high cost involved in recording them for the whir of the motion picture camera. 

Cinema Head Cheese: Podshort! - California by blink-182 (2016)

Kevin reviews the latest album from a pop/punk trio with a long history.

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July 24, 2016

Music Review: Did You Mrs. Me? by Driving Mrs. Satan (2016)

I am a huge fan of cover songs. I don't know what it is, but hearing an interpretation of a classic song is an exciting thing for me. I don't care if it's Limp Bizkit covering The Who or My Chemical Romance covering Queen. Sometimes a band or singer can surprise you. There are bands that striclty do covers, like Me First and the Gimme Gimmes or Richard Cheese, and I love them both. In this case, I'm looking at a band I found randomly called Driving Mrs. Satan. On their album Popscotch, they covered Anthrax, Metallica and Faith No More in spectacular ways, and I was hooked.

July 23, 2016

Cinema Head Cheese Greatest Hits: The Podcast! #35 - Blue Valentines

Jeff, Dave and Kevin welcome Abnormal Entertainment alum Camm Harston to this week's special Valentine's Day edition.

In honor of their new sponsor, Adam and Eve, the quirky quartet shares some of their favorite adult titles in an all Blue Cheese edition of the show.

Dave talks about Grub Girl, Jeff brings up Naked Came the Stranger, Camm reminisces about Taboo and Kevin looks back at The Dinner Party and the documentary Inside Deep Throat.

Click here to listen or right click and choose "Save Link As..." to download.

Click on any of the links above to purchase at Amazon.com and support Cinema Head Cheese and Abnormal Entertainment!

July 20, 2016

Book Review: My Friend Dahmer by Derf Backderf (2012)

Growing up in Chicago in the 1980s and 1990s, I heard a lot about serial killers and mass murderers. John Wayne Gacy and Richard Speck were from Chicago, and they were both executed for their horrendous crimes. We were also affected by another bizarre killer at that time. He wasn't from Chicago, but he often traveled there, and some of his victims were part of the Chicago gay scene. I am speaking of Milwaukee's cannibal killer, Jeffrey Dahmer.

Dahmer was a strange case. When an intended victim escaped and led police to his apartment, what was discovered was a nightmare that Wes Craven couldn't imagine. A refrigerator full of human remains was only the tip of the iceberg. Dahmer had a long and unnerving history. My Friend Dahmer dips into the early part, up until his first killing. How do we know it's accurate? It's written by one of his high school friends.

Cinema Head Cheese: Podshort! - Kindergarten Cop 2 (2016)

Kevin, Jeremy, Jeff and Mandy discuss a disastrous sequel to a childhood classic.

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July 19, 2016

Column of the Dead #1: 1930s


Urban legends of Haiti, tell of zonbi, which is what the western civilization calls zombie. It is essentially a corpse that woke from the dead, a living dead if you will. Said corpse is controlled by the priest who raised it from the grave; usually a voodoo priest or priestess, who can keep the zombie eternally as his/her slave.

The zombi word in English language literature goes back to The Unknown Painter which is a short story first published in 1838. Later, the letter “e” was added and the word became zombie. Also the mythology changed quite a lot, very liberally, and really quickly.

Now, this column will cover mostly U.S. films, and so it is appropriate to note that zombies first became of interest to American citizens during the occupation of Haiti (1915 – 1934), so it is no wonder that the living dead started appearing in film during the ‘30s. But first, they became famous thanks to William Seabrook's infamous The Magic Island book, about which I have heard and read so much, yet I’ve been able to track down a reasonably priced copy.

I’ve learned most of the above from Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zombie). There are many more studies published the last few years on the subject, and my favourite is Jamie Russell’s Book of the Dead: the Complete History of Zombie Cinema.

Through this new column I will try to catalogue and review every zombie movie made in U.S.A. and Europe, in chronological order. Serials and TV series will be ignored. It’s an insane task, but I’m too.

White Zombie (1932)
So much has been written about the first feature film to feature zombies... It is a low-budget affair shot in 11 days. It proved very influential (White Zombie, the band, anyone?) but not until the ‘60s when it was re-discovered (it was until then considered lost). The matte paintings look indeed very dated, but the whole thing is so good that you’ll probably be too engaged to it to notice.
A young couple [Madge Bellamy and John Harron] visit Haiti and very soon they will be surrounded by death as their journey temporarily stops at some funeral that was taking place in the middle of the road. They then meet Legendre [Bela Lugosi] who is backed up by zombies. The driver is acting fast and takes the couple away from him, but first Legendre manages to steal the young girl’s scarf. All this is happening in the first few seconds.
The couple visits Charles Beaumont [Robert Frazer from Black Dragons (1942)] who wants to steal the girl away from the boy and for this to happen he uses a magic potion that was made by Legendre. Said magic potion turns the poor girl into a walking corpse and Charles is not satisfied.

July 10, 2016

The Laughing Mask (2014) Movie Review

While I’m waiting on my next package of goodies, I was lucky enough to be sent the link to an on-line screener (and unlucky to receive another one but that’ll have to be someone else’s problem because SOOOO BAAAADDD). In the long standing tradition of masked serial killers, Michael Aguiar gives us The Laughing Mask.

Jake Johnson’s wife is murdered and daughter kidnapped by the crazed serial killer, The Laughing Mask. Despite all his efforts to find the mad man, Jake comes up with a deadly plan: he’ll write a book about the killer and call him out on national television for being a pussy coward. THAT’LL bring the Mask to Jake for sure and then he can get his revenge.

Or then again, maybe it’ll just unleash The Laughing Mask’s wrath onto everyone else that Jake cares about. Like the plucky hard ass cop, Kate O’Malley. Or perhaps his agent, Mark. You know, in-between dishing out vigilante justice, too.

Umm….I’m confused.

Let’s deal with some of the bad first.

The acting, needless to say, is pretty rough. I’ve definitely seen worse but not by much. Most everyone seems rather stiff and unsure of themselves. Or they’re trying to hard to emote and it throws off the flow. The characters they play are pretty cliche so that doesn’t help matters. And the director used his twin daughters to play two different characters in the movie. Made for some very confusing double takes throughout the film.

July 6, 2016

Cinema Head Cheese: Podshort! - Turbo Kid (2015)

Kevin, Dalyn, Sam and Mandy discuss the Canada/New Zealand joint throwback to 1980s cult cinema.

Click here to listen or right click and choose "Save Link As..." to download.

You can always email us at cinemaheadcheese@yahoo.com or tweet us @CinHeadCheese.

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July 3, 2016

Movie Review: The Great Beauty (aka La Grande Bellezza) (2013)

The Great Beauty(La Grande Bellazza) is an Italian film centered around the character Jep Gambardella(Toni Servillo), a journalist who is among Rome's social elite class.  Jep has turned 65 years old and the movie shows his interactions and his view of life after his birthday.

Toni Servillo as Jep is brilliant in this film.  He needs to be as this is all about hi as Jep and the way he navigates his life in Rome.  The film starts at Jep's 65th birthday and it's quite the party.  The beautiful people of Rome's social elite are there and it's a wild time filled with music and dancing.  This is where we start to see Jep pondering life.  Jep is in the social elite, not because he is a journalist, but because of a novel he wrote.  As the movie progresses, we see Jep's character progress and his sharp wit is on display when he grows tired of the elitism displayed by some of his counterparts.  I also really enjoyed when Jep decided to bring an unlikely someone into his inner circle.  The choice had some ramifications on his own psyche.  Again, Toni Servillo is brilliant.

The Great Beauty is directed by Paolo Sorrentino and you can see this is his homage to Federico Fellini.  The way Sorrentino was able to navigate through all of these lives but keeping Jep the central focus was wonderful.  I took notice in the focus on faces.  There were scenes of people at parties and we were treated with the focus on their faces which visually told you what was going on.  The film takes place in Rome so the backdrop to every shot had exquisite beauty.  Thhe Great Beauty was truly a pleasure to view.

I received this film in the Boxwalla Movie Subscription Box.  You can read my box review at HelloSubscription.com.

June 28, 2016

Cinema Head Cheese: Podshort! - He Never Died (2015)

Kevin Moyers and Dalyn Viker discuss Henry Rollins as a tormented demon.

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June 26, 2016

Movie Review: The Panic in Needle Park (Twilight Time, 1971)

When people talk about the early part of Al Pacino's career, they mention only a handful of movies. Of course The Godfather, Serpico and Dog Day Afternoon are all considered classic parts of his career, but right before The Godfather arrived, Pacino played a heroin addict in a lesser remembered movie that centered around a group of addicts in an area of New York known as Needle Park.

Bobby (Pacino) is a charming scamp, full of energy and life. Honestly, scamp is the perfect word for him. He visits his artist friend Marco (Raul Julia), where he meets a lovely young woman named Helen (Kitty Winn). He is immediately enamored with Helen and decides to start a conversation that turns into a day long date of sorts. Throughout the day, Bobby shows his petty criminal side. He steals a television from the back of a van in order to pawn it. He interacts with his brother, who proudly declares how well he does robbing houses. He introduces Helen to several addict friends and other sketchy characters. Being the artistic type, she is fascinated with all of it.

Movie Review: 8 1/2 (1963)

Federico Fellini is a name all movie buffs are familiar with and I decided to not just be familiar with the name, but to also be familiar with his works.  I was fortunate enough to receive "8 1/2" inside of the Boxwalla Film subscription box(you can read my reviews subscription boxes at HelloSubscription.com).  

"8 1/2" follows the life of a filmmaker by the name of Guido Anselmi(Marcello Mastroianni).  Guido has an interesting life.  He is about to make a large budget movie but nobody seems to know when this film will start shooting.  Guido finds himself answerring to people at all times.  There's an amazing scene early on where the camera never stops and Guido walk through a large room answering questions and accepting comments from producers, actors and people generally interested in what he is working on.

Guido also has a thing for the ladies.  He has a hard time coping with why they can't keep focused on him, even though he himself is married.  This comes into play throughout the film as the story delves into the psyche of this troubled filmmaker and leads to a fantasy of having his own harem.

June 22, 2016

Beer Review: Sleepy Dog Peanut Butter Milk Stout

Craft beer is a hobby for me. Consuming it, generally. I always enjoy finding something I've never had and excitedly ordering it so that I can rate it on Untappd. One of my favorite things to find is an alternate version of something I already love. Sleepy Dog Brewing is a great little company in Tempe, AZ. They have a handful of beers from IPA to cherry wheat to milk stout. Their Wet Snout milk snout is one of my favorites, not just from Sleepy Dog, but all time. It's up there with Left Hand and Hussler. When they came out with the peanut butter version, I was all in.

June 21, 2016

Coming Soon: VIOLENT SHIT - THE MOVIE Full Details

Here are the full details, artwork and release date of Reel Gore Releasing's first release VIOLENT SHIT – THE MOVIE.





www.reelgorereleasing.com (coming soon)
www.facebook.com/reelgorereleasing
www.twitter.com/reelgoremovies

Available for pre-order on Amazon.com
amzn.to/1UhX79y

International Trailer: Violent Shit – The Movie
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpjcluSWdlQ

Movie Review: The New Devil in Miss Jones (Vivid - 2005)

Reviewed by: Rick L. Blalock   - March 29, 2016

Starring :
Savanna Samson
Jenna Jameson
Roxanne Hall
Angelica Sin
Cameron
Brooke Alexander
Rachel Rotten
Vicky Vette
Jessica Jaymes
Tony Tedeschi
Alec Metro
Jeremy Steele
Nick Manning
Anthony Hardwood
Mario Rossi
Kris Slater
Rob Rotten
Dick Smothers Jr.
Damien Childs

Synopsis
Paul Thomas reimagines adult cinema's greatest masterpiece in a brand new Devil in Miss Jones that Adult Video News is heralding a milestone! In it, Savanna (Miss Jones) is a virgin suicide who begs Jenna (The Devil) to grant her just a little more time on Earth before her descent into hell. Jenna obliges...but only if Miss Jones totally and completely surrenders herself to the sins of the flesh!

(Runtime - 1 hr. 49 mins.)
———————

In this re-imagining, THE NEW DEVIL IN MISS JONES, the virgin, "Justine Jones"(Savanna Samson), goes about the day - which happens to be her Birthday, like any other day.  She wakes up, showers, eats some cereal, and heads to the office building in which she works.  Despite a seemingly normal start of the day, she begins to recognize subtle oddities about the persons and things around her.  subtleties that soon become blatant as the day roll on.  It appears as though sex is in the air, whether Justine is just a spectator, or she is involved.  Suddenly the once virgin, is no more, as Jones indulges in the sex around her.  It is a day of lust, that seems to keep no time.  That is until an evil entity, in the form of Justine's boss, "Miss Devlin"(Jenna Jameson), informs Jones that her time is running out.  Justine is confused.  What time is she speaking of?  As it turns out, reality is cold and hard for Justine, as she learns that she has died.  A victim of suicide, the day filled with sex, which she has been experiencing, just so happens to be part of an agreement that she made with Satan following her death.  She was to live out one final day, as she desired, stating that she wished to be engulfed in lust and sex.  She most certainly got what she wanted.  But unfortunately, she forgot about one key stipulation.  That after the day is done, she would be banished to the bowels of hell for eternity.

Cinema Head Cheese: Podshort! - The Resurrection of Jake the Snake (2016)

Kevin Moyers and Dalyn Viker talk about rebuilding the life of a childhood hero.

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You can always email us at cinemaheadcheese@yahoo.com or tweet us @CinHeadCheese.

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June 16, 2016

The Death Wish Franchise


I like revenge flicks; especially the late ‘70s ones, but I had never seen Death Wish (1974). This works for a variety of subgenres for me: I’m in love with several rip-offs but I haven’t seen the originals. But I’m on a mission to right this wrong.

The Death Wish franchise is featuring actor Charles Bronson in the role of Paul Kersey who is a vigilante that goes after muggers. I’m a big fan of C’era Una Volta Il West (1968), The Great Escape (1963), Machine-Gun Kelly (1958), Telefon (1977) and St. Ives (1976) and so the idea of watching Charles Bronson shooting bad guys in five more films sounded brilliant! I hope you enjoy reading as much as I did watching and writing.

Death Wish (1974)

Paul Kersey [Charles Bronson; because Steve McQueen, Clint Eastwood and Frank Sinatra turned down the part] lives in New York where numerous murders take place. He is a liberal who’s against leaving the city because that’s only for people who can afford it (hence undemocratic). Some of his friends are radical and wish that there’ll be concentration camps for the criminals and hate it that the tax payers can’t afford more police on the streets.

When Paul’s at work, three punks break into his apartment, and when they find out that his wife and his daughter - who are present - don’t have any money they brutalize them and the poor girls end in the hospital. Paul and his son-in-law go to the hospital. Paul’s wife dies. His daughter survives but in order to get through the shock she’ll have to stay away from her father, as the psychiatrist suggest, and anything else that would remind her of the traumatic incident.

June 11, 2016

TV Review: The Jamz (2016)

The Jamz is a short series about major changes at a Chicago radio station. Kasey, the morning talk show host at the biggest station in the city, is ready to retire. Several other hosts around the station are all vying to get the morning slot, but they'll have to impress Kasey as well as their station manager, Dan (played by Kathy Najimy). The two overnight hosts, Fitzy and Jay-Jay (played by Jim Kozyra and Chris Petlak, who also created the show), are hapless fools who don't get much right. No matter what they do to take the lead in the race for the morning show, things go wrong.

Sure, this sounds like a typical workplace comedy in a lot of ways, but the change of setting gives it a fresh take on similar shows, like The Office. No, I haven't forgotten about News Radio, but that was shot in the style of most sitcoms before the 21st Century. It also had a variety of characters to pull from, while The Jamz focuses on a pivotal few.

June 10, 2016

TV Review: The Path: Season 1 (Hulu, 2016)

Aaron Paul made a huge impact on fans when he costarred in Breaking Bad. In case you didn't know, his character was supposed to be killed off after three episodes. He ended up being so entertaining that he completed the full run of the show. This time around, he's the executive producer and star of another serious drama for Hulu. The Path focuses on a religious movement called Meyerism. Sure, it might look like a cult that lives in a compound while recruiting those who are down and out, but that's only because it is.

Paul plays Eddie Lane, a married father and Meyerism member. He is married to Sarah, a high ranking member of The Movement. She works with Cal, the de facto leader of the group while founder Dr. Steven Meyer is away completing the last three rungs of the movement's "ladder," a series of levels you reach through your journey to the light.