RIFFTRAX LIVE: MOTHRA

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Another Rifftrax this week and it was the classic Japanese Kaiju movie Mothra. First the guys started off with a short. This short like most they do followed a visit from an anthropomorphic image that wants to force you to change your ways. In this instance a kid who thinks its sissy to wash is visited by a large bar of soap with legs and arms named Soapy. Soapy shows the little brat the importance of personal hygiene. The most important fact we learn is that women should wash their hair at least once every two weeks.

Anyway the movie then starts. Some sailors are shipwrecked on an island used for atomic tests and are found to have suffered no effects from radiation. This results in a scientific expedition launched with great fanfare. The scientists discover an island that is inhabited with a hell of a lot of natives and jungle vegetation. Obviously no one took much time to scout the place before they set off a bomb. They also find two tiny women. An unscrupulous member from the country of Rolisica a man named Nelson decides to kidnap the girls. With his henchmen he comes back and does just that. In the process shooting a few hundred natives.

Goofy scientist discover tiny women.

Goofy scientist discover tiny women.

So Nelson starts to market the tiny women to sold out shows in Tokyo. Apparently Rolisica has a lot of clout and protects his questionable enslavement of the tiny women.

Hero reporter and the tiny captive girls.

Hero reporter and the tiny captive girls.

But the girls have a protector. Mothra is hatched from a giant egg and makes his way as a giant caterpillar to Japan. (Didn’t know caterpillars could swim.)

Mothra caterpillar takes out model buildings.

Mothra caterpillar takes out model buildings.

Continuous attacks by napalm, rockets and tanks have no effect on the caterpillar. At the Tokyo tower the caterpillar forms a cocoon and bursts out as Mothra. Impervious to even death rays its wings generate hurricane force winds which devastate toy tanks and buildings.

Mothra emerges.

Mothra emerges.

It then takes off to New Kirk city in Rolisica because that is where Nelson flees with the girls. Now the government has second thoughts and decides to order the release of the girls. Apparently destruction by Mothra can do wonders on ones outlook. Nelson is killed in a shoot out and the tiny girls are released to Mothra. They happily fly off to waving smiling crowds. Thousands dead and the infrastructure of two major cities destroyed but Mothra is cute so everything is ok.

Mothra lands and everybody is happy.

Mothra lands and everybody is happy.

Wow what a movie. I remember watching this as a kid and loving it. Now watching it with its incomprehensible plot, quick cuts between scenes, slow plot I still do love it. Just a fun goofy movie. A great movie for riffing on and look forward to the next show in October Carnival of Souls.

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RIFFTRAX LIVE: MST3K 25TH REUNION SHOW

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Its the twentieth Rifftrax live show and the guys decided to do something special. They got the band back together so to speak and instead of a movie did a series of shorts.
The first the three guys started with “The Talking Car”. A short that used anthropomorphic cars with animated faces. They come in the dream of a little brat who almost got run over because he didn’t look both ways. The demon cars set him in his place.
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The second featured Mary Jo Pehl and Bridget Nelson and they did some promotional short from the fifties. Housewives discuss how their marital problems can be fixed by modern kitchen appliances.

The Third was a real funny one with Trace Beaulieu and Frank Conniff. Some fifties short about some plain girl who really tried too hard to get a date.

Then Mike, Kevin and Bill came back with a classic from the seventies. A safety short put out by Caterpillar about the dangers of being a macho man and operation heavy machinery.

Joel and the new guy Jonah did another fifties goofy short on barbers and beauticians. It seems that the beauticians from the fifties were either New Jersey mobsters or Frankenstein.

And finally the gang all got together for two shorts. One a fifties Superman episode that promoted buying treasury stamps and the other a classic rifftrax short on grass.

It was an enjoyable show. Very nostalgic and nice to see everyone back together. So next up in August the guys go back to the traditional movies with the Japanese classic Mothra.

RIFFTRAX LIVE: TIME CHASERS

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Well its time for another Rifftrax live. This one was Time Chasers a classic from the Sci-fi (before it was spelled with a y) era. The show started off with a short from the 1920’s or ’30s. It was about a chimp who was a mascot at a fire station. The chimp does what a chimp would do with his funny antics and threatening to tear off peoples faces. Thankfully he’s there to distract from the house burning down.

Our hero folks.

Our hero folks.

So on to the movie. A big chinned guy who wears a Castleton t-shirt has invented a way to travel through time using his Cessna and a Commodore 64 computer. Now all he needs is money. While watching the late movie an ad comes on with a commercial from GenCorp. The CEO obviously is a caring man. Why we know that? Because he says so. Well big chinned guy decides that’s the place to get funding. But he has to deceive an executive with a bogus claim of a fuel system to get him to come and see his plane I mean time machine. Oh he wants some press coverage so he makes up a story about his grandmother skydiving.
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So a little guy in a pink suit and his old high school flame who is a reporter comes and are initially disappointed at the lie. But they do take a ride and get to see the Socialist paradise of 2041 Vermont. A future with everyone in spandex, bicycles, recycled buildings and food courts that look unchanged from the twentieth century.

Food courts of the future.

Food courts of the future.


Well the caring CEO loves the time machine and agrees to take care of everything. So our big chinned hero goes on to date his old girlfriend without a care in the world. Then on a date through time the two go back to 2041 only now everything has changed. Everything is in ruins and people dressed as ads for Old Navy run around with guns. Something bad has happened.
The future.

The future.


Well they confront the CEO and guess what? He’s actually evil. Wow!! What a shock. They barely escape from his atrium/office in the mall to catch a taxi by a guy from New York, New York. Driven by a New Yorker with the worst accent I ever heard.
The powerful CEO's office in the mall atrium.

The powerful CEO’s office in the mall atrium.


So its off on a chase through time. A time that sees them eventually end up in 1777 with warring colonials and redcoats.
Evil CEO and his lackey.

Evil CEO and his lackey.


Thankfully the evil CEO is defeated in battle and the time line is saved.
Evil CEO vs. big chinned guy.

Evil CEO vs. big chinned guy.


So this is a classic from the old MST3K days. I enjoyed this movie. I mean its obviously bad but it does have good production values and a story I could follow and found interesting. Made by a small company in Vermont it has that charm of a small production made in Vermont. The guys had some good riffs and this an enjoyable evening.
Our hero perplexed about the movie.

Our hero perplexed about the movie.


The rifftrax trailer.

And the official trailer for Time Chasers.

RIFFTRAX LIVE: SANTA AND THE ICE CREAM BUNNY

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The final movie in the Crappening and it is a doozy. The guys start off with three very weird shorts that vaguely have a Christmas theme but get progressively weirder. The first some a real old one titled “Santa Claus Story.” Its about a boy and girl who wake up and find Santa. Santa then tells them a story about monkeys and how they celebrate Christmas. This is over a montage of monkeys. WTF??? Monkeys???

Well it gets weirder. The next “Custard the Dragon” has some kids in animal costumes. One in the dragon costume is Custard. Suddenly a pirate that looks like Osama Bin Laden dressed as a football referee comes to steal the presents. Luckily he didn’t count on Custard who proceeds to eat him.

Of course these two are still not the weirdest. The final “Santa’s Village” was a promo short for some Santa village theme parks in California and Illinois that were founded by K. Gordon Murrey the creator of last years Rifftrax gift Santa Claus. The village is populated by Merlin, Stinky the Skunk, and Rapacious Wolf who make accordion sounds every time he walks.

Then we get to the movie. It starts out with Santa on a beach in Florida. His sleigh got stuck in the sand and the reindeer bailed on him. Now he sits in the sun with his soiled pants lamenting the fact that its hot and he’s stuck.
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He then uses his powers to summon all the boys and girls in the area for help. Unfortunately the boys and girls prove to be pretty worthless. They brings pigs, goats, horses and a guy in a gorilla suit. None of these can pull Santa’s sleigh free.
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So Santa going nowhere gathers the kids and decides to tell them the story of Jack and the Beanstalk. What a traditional Christmas story. Jack’s world seems to consist of mat paintings and polyester clothing. And there’s a lot of groovy singing.(I’m kidding the singing is awful.)Jack of course steals the magic goose and harp.

Look at all this really realistic stuff.

Look at all this really realistic stuff.


Finally the movies gets back to Santa. Just when you think there’s no hope what comes driving along but The Ice Cream Bunny in his jalopy. Yeah Santa’s saved the end.
pirate
Wow was this movie weird. It had the most threadbare plot I’ve ever seen. It was a perfect choice for riffing on. I have to say that combined with the weird shorts this had to have been the funniest Rifftrax I have ever seen. I can’t remember hearing such laughter as I did last night. This was great way to end their year. You can still catch an encore performance on Tuesday.
So here is a song that sums up the experience.

Ice Cream Bunny says bye in a really creepy way.

Ice Cream Bunny says bye in a really creepy way.

RIFFTRAX LIVE: MIAMI CONNECTION

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The third entry in this years the Crappening. This time we get treated to a forgotten gem from 1987. The movie starts out with introducing the motorcycle riding ninjas. A typical drug deal is going down and the ninjas decide to help themselves to both the cocaine and money. The drug dealers armed with Mac-10’s are no match against the ninja’s speed and stealth. When full automatic weapons fire fails they resort to attacking the ninjas with metal pipes with the same results.

Drug dealers die a gruesome death for opposing the ninjas.

Drug dealers die a gruesome death for opposing the ninjas.

But as the cobra has the mongoose the ninja has a new wave/Tae Kwon Do enthusiasts rock band. In this case it is DRAGON SOUND the hottest band in Orlando. These young men and one Pat Benatar wannabe when not rockin’ to such hits as “Friends” or “Against the Ninja” go to the University of Central Florida or practice their Tae Kwon Do. And these guys do everything together. They live in the same house, go to class together, the beach, the gym and pretty much anywhere together.

DRAGON SOUND in one of their rare moments wearing shirts.

DRAGON SOUND in one of their rare moments wearing shirts.

Well the group has a problem with the brother of their lead singer. It seems he is jealous of his sister dating one of the guys on the band. Nothing creepy about that. Said brother also heads a non-ninja gang that is pissed at DRAGON SOUND for I think that they are also a band and angry that they can’t get hired at the night club. I say think because this movie feels that the plot is none of the audiences business. So I am kind of on my own in trying to figure it all out.

DRAGON SOUND confronts creepy brother and his gang.

DRAGON SOUND confronts creepy brother and his gang.

Well creepy brother and his gang try to take on DRAGON SOUND and in spite of being outnumbered five hundred to one DRAGON SOUND has no problem kicking their asses. Well after several attempts the creepy brother is killed in one of the encounters. This pissed off the leader of the Miami ninjas and the ninjas embark on a trip to Orlando. They meet the gang as they take one of the member to meet his long lost father. After nearly killing him and ruining his spiffy new suit he just bought, the rest of DRAGON SOUND open a can of whop ass on the ninjas.

DRAGON SOUND training in the arts of Tae Kwon Do.

DRAGON SOUND training in the arts of Tae Kwon Do.

Oh my God do I love this movie. I have never see such overacting in my life. The lead a Grandmaster Y.K Kim who also produced and wrote this could not speak a word on intelligible English. Fortunately he left most of the dialogue to the others and concentrated on kicking ass. Of course this movie is bad but it such a wonderful bad. You can tell that everyone involved was trying hard and this movie has heart that other big budget fail to ever have. This was the best for Rifftrax because it was just made to be riffed on.

Our hero Grandmaster Y.K Kim mumbling unintelligible English while kicking ninja butt.

Our hero Grandmaster Y.K Kim mumbling unintelligible English while kicking ninja butt.

So here is the trailer.

And watch out for Santa Claus and the Ice Cream Bunny coming this December.

RIFFTRAX LIVE: SHARKNADO 2 THE SECOND ONE

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Part II of the crappening is starting to pick up some steam. The show started off with a short Appreciating Your Parents II. This is sort of a reboot of a classic short from MST3K. This ones in color and about a satanic sock puppet that turns a feminine boy invisible so he can see how hard his parents work. A good warm up to the main event.

The movie starts off with Ian Ziering and Tara Reid on a flight coming in to New York. The two have apparently reconciled and are somewhat famous from their adventures in L.A. Well wouldn’t you know that it just so happens another Sharknado is now brewing along the east coast. The plane flies into a swarm of flying pissed off sharks at 20,000 feet. It seems sharks have no problem being out of water at such high altitudes. They take out their anger by eating the pilot and co-pilot. Luckily Ian is an accomplished pilot and safely lands the plane but not before Tara loses her hand to a shark.

Its raining sharks.

Its raining sharks.

After landing Ian sets out to find his sister and her family. Thus begins a wild search that involves a ton of cameos by minor celebrities, flooding subways, flooding streets, out of control rolling statue of liberty head, flying sharks, sharks climbing stairs, burning sharks climbing stairs and a whole lot of feelings being discussed by the main characters. It all comes to an end when the cast unites and blows up the Freon stored on top of the Empire State Building.

Out of control rolling head. Look out!!!

Out of control rolling head. Look out!!!

I think we can all agree that it will now be mandatory for a Sharknado movie to be made every year. I suppose that’s good for Tara so she can finally have a steady income to pay for her plastic surgery. I do have reservations that the well will start to run dry of ideas with the concept. I did think that the second movie was more fun than the first. The first was really just a standard bad shark movie. No more special than Sharktopus or Megarobot Shark vs. Octopus. The second was very self conscious of its badness and just went over the top. Indeed this movie was making fun of itself on purpose which just make it way too easy for the guys to crack riffs.

This is really goofy.

This is really goofy.

So I am looking forward to Sharknado 3 Oh Hell No! which will be aired later this month on the SyFy channel. Also in October the third movie in the Crappening Miami Connection will hit theaters. Its an eighties martial arts/rock-n-roll/crime movie that looks just bonkers. I have a feeling it will be the best movie yet.

I’m certain that I’ll be in theaters next July to watch this.

RIFFTRAX LIVE: THE ROOM

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The first offering in this years the crappening starts out with this strong entry. The Room is an odd movie that was produced, directed, written and starring Tommy Wisneau. A man of indeterminate ethnic origin with a slurred speech, greasy long hair and perpetually baggy clothes. Kind of reminds me of Dr. Nick, the quack doctor from The Simpsons.

The guys warm up the audience with a short from the series ‘At Your Fingertips’. For those of you that don’t know this was an educational series from the ’70s on basically how to make garbage into works of art. Now back in the seventies we didn’t have any video games or internet but we never had to resort to playing with garbage. Indeed my parents would have strongly discouraged me from such behavior. The makers of this series had a different view. Here’s a sample of the one of their past shorts.

Then we start with the movie. Its basically about Johnny who is a successful banker in San Francisco. He lives with his girlfriend of seven years Lisa. Now Lisa is sort of a cute woman. Kind of reminds me of Britney Spear who maybe ate one too many pork chops. They seem happy and have some young neighbor named Denny who just barges in whenever he feels like it to watch them. Well right off the bat is a totally unappealing sex scene between the two that goes so far to show a full view of Johnny’s butt. Don’t get enough of this scene well don’t worry. Ten minutes we get another. And another and another.

Well early on Lisa decides she doesn’t love Johnny anymore and instead loves Mark, Johnny’s best friend. She proceeds to seduce him. Now Mark doesn’t want to get involved with Lisa because he is Johnny’s best friend but she is persistent and he just gives in. It is followed by many more unerotic love scenes between the two.

Then basically the whole movie revolves around the relationship problems with Lisa and Johnny. Everyone doesn’t get why Lisa hates Johnny but she does. She gets him drunk and spreads the story that Johnny hits her.

The whole movie is just endless scenes of that various characters talking about their feelings. A subplot of Denny getting in trouble over money he owes to a drug dealer. (I didn’t know drug dealers gave credit.)It’s quickly resolved as Mark and Johnny subdue the dealer and Lisa and her mother berate the hapless Denny.

Well finally at Johnny’s birthday party it all comes to a head. Lisa decides to tell Johnny she’s pregnant when she really isn’t. Why she did this? Probably because she’s cookoo. Now Mark thinks its his and gets in a fight with Johnny were they make up and start fighting five times before the others have to drag them apart from slapping each other like little girls.

Johnny despondent tears up the room and decides to kill himself. Everyone is really upset and wish they didn’t cheat on Johnny.

The show was shown on the 100th birthday of Orson Welles and this movie is supposedly the Citizen Kane of bad movies. Now I’ve seen some bad movies and its probably not the worst. I would put it in the top ten. This is an excellent choice to riff on. The bad dialogue. The incomprehensible storyline. The actors must have went to the William Shatner school of over emoting. You can catch the encore presentation next week at a theater near you.

Also watch for Sharknado 2 in July.