Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Fantastic Fest (2022) Reviews by Joseph Perry

“Solomon King” (1974), “ “Lynch/Oz” (2022), and “The Stairway to Stardom Mixtape” (2022) 


Solomon King
How baaaad is former CIA operative and Green Beret — and current nightclub owner — Solomon King? He’s so baaaad that after a woman he was protecting and recently made love to dies, his grieving process is short enough that he finds solace in the arms of another woman soon after. He’s so baaaad that, while suffering from a head wound, all he can think of is scoring with yet another young lady. And in between those times, he is involved in fisticuffs and gunplay aplenty. That’s how baaaad Solomon King is! Deaf Crocodile Films has done a terrific job with its 4K restoration of 1974 crime film Solomon King, which has a plot that reaches far beyond director/cowriter/star Sal Watt’s budget, but delivers mightily on entertainment and chutzpah. Solomon sets out to protect Princess Oneeba (Claudia Russo) when she and her father become the targets of a coup started by Prince Hassan (Richard Scarso) having to do with oil fields in the Middle East. Solomon’s brother Manny King (James Watts) helps her escape to Oakland, California, but after assassins kill her, Solomon makes things personal, including everything I wrote about at the beginning of this review and much, much, more, as the third act takes a turn from its urban-set action back to the Middle East. Though some of the performances are a bit flat and it is obvious that everything set in the Middle East was filmed locally, the sheer can-do spirit, the smile-inducing use of the pyrotechnics budget, and the tour of Oakland nightclubs — including some fun funk and soul numbers from the time — are just a few reasons that make Solomon King well worth seeking out.


Sunday, October 2, 2022

The UBW Top 100 Horror Movies - #100-76

We here at Uphill Both Ways love our horror movies.  Both of us grew up with vampires, werewolves, swamp monsters, irradiated beasts and everything around and in-between, and never has our love of the genre wavered. And it's with that love in mind that we decided to create our ultimate top 100 list of horror movies.  The only catch is that the films couldn't be newer than 1989. Sixties, fifties, or earlier? That's fine, as long as it's something we watched during the 70s and 80s  - and that only makes sense since that's the time frame we like to reminisce about here and on our podcast.  So how did we decide on this spooktacular countdown? We scoured the Internet for dozens of "Top Horror" movie lists, collated everything, eliminated ineligible entries, added, divided, averaged, and then sorted it all and then added our own personal rankings to the mix.  Really, the process is something a mad scientist would love and make lesser men tremble. We'd like to think that this process has given us the definitive list of movies that could have been watched on fuzzy UHF channels or VHS tapes back in the day.  Enough talk - let's get this going!

#100
Wait Until Dark (1967)
Director: Terence Young
Starring: Audrey Hepburn, Alan Arkin, Richard Crenna, Efrem Zimbalist Jr.
Things are much scarier in the dark! A bit of a slow burn out of the gate, the pace eventually quickens as Hepburn, playing blind Susy Hendrix, is in-between a doll full of heroin and three men eager to recover the drugs. Hepburn was so good in the film that she was nominated for an Academy Award.

Friday, September 30, 2022

"Diamond Dogs"

Episode #130

Where's the paw-ty? Right here! Anything is paw-sible when Mike and Joseph get together to raise the woof! Things start off with the fellas on a short leash as they Gift, Keep, and Ditch famous dogs from movies and TV shows, and then its on to the main topic, a look at cartoon dogs through the years. This episode may be a diamond in the ruff, but you're barking up the wrong tree if you think that it isn't a paws-itively fetching episode. Dear Dog, there goes our dignity. Woof.




Thursday, September 29, 2022

Long Lost Linnea Quigley feature HEARTLAND OF DARKNESS Coming this November

There are some movies that just have that certain feel to them that demands that they be watched. Both Mike and Joseph are in agreement that this looks like one of them. However, it's definitely not "family friendly" and although it's not rated, we're pretty sure it's on par with similar films that are rated 'R', so keep that in mind.  That said, if you're ready to dive in, read on.

Visual Vengeance, a Blu-ray label dedicated to vintage ‘Shot on Video’ and microbudget genre independents from the 1980s though 2000s, is thrilled to reveal the next Blu-ray collector’s edition release for November 8, 2022:

The 1989 never-before-seen Linnea Quigley “Satanic Panic” epic HEARTLAND OF DARKNESS (a/k/a Blood Church)
SYNOPSIS: In the small town of Copperton, Ohio, Paul Henson, a former big-city journalist, buys a small local newspaper. He quickly falls into a wide-reaching conspiracy of ritualistic murder and cult mind control when he discovers that the entire town may be under the spell of a Satanic reverend and his flock. As the clues and corpses pile up, Henson and his family are thrust into a life-or-death struggle to expose the truth and stop the demonic cabal’s reign of evil. 
Shot in 1989 by director Eric Swelstad on 16mm film and lost in obscurity and distribution false starts for over 30 years, Heartland of Darkness finally arrives on home video for the very first time and is packed with bonus features that spotlight the original creators and document the film’s long history and final completion.
Info and Select Bonus Features:
- First time available in any format
- New director-supervised SD master from original tape and film elements
- Deeper Into the Darkness: New 40-minute BTS documentary
- Three commentary tracks
- Linnea Quigley Remembers: new interview
- Archival TV interviews, TV spots, BTS footage and trailers
- Complete original “Fallen Angels” 1990 workprint
- Blood Church – rare distributor promotional video
- Six-page liner notes by Tony Strauss of Weng’s Chop Magazine
- Limited Edition Heartland of Darkness “Prayer Cloth”
- Limited Edition slipcase - FIRST PRESSING ONLY
- Collectible Linnea Quigley folded mini-poster
- ‘Stick your own’ VHS sticker set
- And much more

For more details on the label and updates on new releases – as well as news on upcoming releases - follow Visual Vengeance on social media:

TWITTER: @VisualVenVideo
INSTAGRAM: Visualvenvideo
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/visualvenvideo




Tuesday, September 27, 2022

It's Almost Time!

In just a few short days we will be unleashing upon the world our definitive top 100 Horror Movies of the Uphill Both Ways era.  You have hopefully seen the bonus sneak peaks of #105-101 over the past few weeks and that that has piqued your curiosity.  
So make sure you check back on October 2nd and see what movies made the list at #100-76!


 

Sunday, September 25, 2022

UBW Top 100 Horror Movies: A Taste of Things to Come (Part 5)

We're very excited to release our upcoming Top 100 Horror Movies list. So excited, in fact, that we've decided to offer a bonus to everyone in the form of number 101-105 each week until October when we'll release 25 films each week with the top ranked batch the week before Halloween.
Finally, here is number 101.

101
When A Stranger Calls (1979)
*69 would have come in handy back then
Director: Fred Walton
Starring: Carol Kane, Colleen Dewhurst, Tony Beckley, Charles Durning
Quite possibly the scariest opening act of any of the films on this list, it’s quite surprising that it only clocks in at #101.  While not the only - or even the first - film to utilize the urban legend of “the babysitter and the man upstairs”, it is arguably the best.

Coming next week:  Numbers 100-76!