Sunday, January 14, 2018

Episode 117 - Jacked Up

Happy New Year and welcome back to the cave!  We have wanted to look at the Billy Jack series of films since before the podcast started, and it seemed like the 117th episode was a perfect place to finally do it! These are legendary low-budget movies and there is no question why...they are great! We start off with 1967's The Born Losers and follow that up with the masterpiece Billy Jack from 1971. Both films were directed by and star Tom Laughlin as Mr. Jack ( he directed both under the pseudonym T.C. Frank ).  There is a kinetic energy, and a vibrating core of danger in both films, with some amazing cinematography and powerful dialogue. Calling these "message films" is valid but the messages are relayed with such a high degree of craft that they rarely seem preachy. Both are fascinating studies of the 60's and 70's counter-culture movement, from within and without.  Mostly-excellent acting and some stirring music really round-out the packages and now we find ourselves eager to watch the 3rd and 4th films in the Billy Jack canon. Let us know what you thought of the show by writing to flickersfrom@yahoo.com or flickersfrom@gmail.com or just leave us a message on our Facebook page.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Episode 116 - Where in the World is Cirio Santiago

We all fell in love with Trina Parks when we watched Darktown Strutters, so we went in search of more of her films.  That lead us to Cirio Santiago, a legendary Filipino director who was a major inspiration to Quentin Tarantino, so we chose two of his films for this episode. We start off with 1974's T.N.T. Jackson, starring Jeannie Bell as the titular ( very apropos ) character who is searching for her missing brother in the dark, sinister world of Filipino crime.  It costars Stan Shaw, who was also in Darktown Strutters, as Charlie, a charming bad guy.  We follow that up with the fantastic movie "The Muthers" from 1976, also starring Jeannie Bell as Kelly, a ruthless but soft-hearted pirate, leading a crew of other women as she looks for her sister, who has gone missing in the dank jungles of the Philippines. One of her crew is Marcie, played by Trina Parks.  These ladies fight and shoot and even swing from vines! They are gorgeous, powerful, and totally badass!  These are great exploitation films and both are on YouTube for you to watch at your leisure, and we recommend that you do! Let us know what you thought of the show by writing to flickersfrom@yahoo.com or flickersfrom@gmail.com. You can also message us through our Facebook page or our Twitter.
 


Sunday, November 26, 2017

Episode 115 - Going Deep

We go deep this time, and everybody gets wet as we examine two EXTREMELY similar films, both from 1989. First up is Leviathan, from show-favorite George P. Cosmatos and starring Peter Weller and some other fairly big names. It is set in a deep-sea mining and research rig that encounters a mysterious monster in a sunken Russian ship. We follow that up with DeepStar Six from Sean S. Cunningham with Greg Evigan in the lead.  It is also set in a deep sea mining and research rig that encounters a mysterious monster, but this time it comes from an underwater cavern.  These are both really fun little celluloid treats that disappear in your mind like cotton candy does on your lips.  We also ramble at great length about lots of other movie-stuff ( shocker, right? ). So listen in as the misinformation and fake-news flies! Let us know what you thought of the show by writing to flickersfrom@yahoo.com or flickersfrom@gmail.com. You can also leave us a message on our Facebook page.


Saturday, November 11, 2017

Episode 114 - Cavey Van

Back in the 70's the van became an important way for people to express themselves.  They would modify their "shaggin' wagon" with elaborate murals, shag carpeting, wide wheels and big V8 engines. We look at two less-than-stellar examples of a genre known simply as vansploitation. First off, we look at 1977's Supervan, which basically stars an incredible creation from the wizard George Barris, a "solar powered" van, called Vandora.  This is not a good film, but does feature the notorious writer George Bukowski as a wet t-shirt water boy. The music is bad, the acting is sub-par, and the pacing is glacial, but that van is really, really awesome.  We follow that up with a slightly better movie from 1979 called Van Nuys Blvd. The lead character also drives a van and decides to leave his home and girlfriend to pursue the wild night-life of cruising up and down the titular Van Nuys Blvd in California. You've likely seen this story a thousand times, and chances are that every time was better than it is in this film.  We didn't love either of these movies, but Van Nuys Blvd is, at least, entertaining on a certain basic level.  Let us know about your van experiences or send us film suggestions to flickersfrom@yahoo.com or flickersfrom@gmail.com. You can also leave a message on our Facebook page or tweet us @cavewalls.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Episode 113 - Pink Strutters

On this episode of the podcast, things get so weird that we had to bring in our friend Julie to comment on it all. During the 50's, 60's and 70's, cinemas ( and more often drive-ins ) were full of movies about bikers and biker gangs.  Usually these were stories about disaffected men who had turned their backs on society to pursue a life with a different set of morals and rules. This era gave us such landmark films as The Wild One and Easy Rider. In 1972, a VERY different biker movie was released called Pink Angels. This gang of cyclists is unique because they are all gay and are traveling the highways to get to Los Angeles for a big drag ball.  It is mostly funny, with some great performances and an undercurrent of subversion that is still very potent now. If you read about the movie online, you will hear a lot about the ending, and it is a real shocker, but don't avoid the film because of that...this one needs to be seen to be believed.  We follow that up 1975's Darktown Strutters, which combines 1000 different elements into a really trippy stew.  We start with 4 gorgeous African-American women on  big, badass 3-Wheeled choppers, hauling ass around Los Angeles and putting all the men in their places. Then we add Roger E. Mosley as "Mellow" who has his own oddball gang, some KKK members in shiny satin robes, disco, funk, an evil Colonel Sanders, and tons of slapstick wackiness that somehow, strangely, works ( mostly ). The music in this movie is fantastic, the girls are gorgeous, and  the racial politics are right up front and writ large across the screen.  This is another one that you really do need to see.  Let us know what you thought of the show by writing to flickersfrom@yahoo.com or flickersfrom@gmail.com or just post a message on our Facebook page.


Saturday, October 14, 2017

Episode 112 - Flickers from the Swamp

There was once a time in American cinema when every movie that starred Burt Reynolds was a guaranteed box-office blockbuster.  On this episode we look at two of the films from the early part of his reign. We start off with 1973's White Lightning, which tells the story of a bootlegger named Gator McKlusky.  The movie starts with Ned Beatty murdering Gator's younger brother in extremely brutal fashion. This sets in motion an elaborate revenge story that is full of car chases, and sweaty, dirty people.  It is a winner from beginning to end. White Lightning was such a hit that 3 years later a sequel was released titled Gator.  The second film is essentially a reworking of the original story, but this time the bad-guy is a moonshiner named Bama McCall, played with extreme charm and menace by the great Jerry Reed.  Gator is a much slicker  movie,  but is also probably much more accessible. They are both extremely entertaining and get our highest recommendation.  Let us know what you thought of the show by writing to flickersfrom@yahoo.com or flickersfrom@gmail.com or post a message to our Facebook page.


Sunday, October 1, 2017

Episode 111 - Kukla, Snakes and Ollie

More Oliver Reed? Yes, Please!  We turn positively reptilian this episode with two films that combine the slithery goodness of a dangerous snakes, with the sweaty power of Mr. Oliver Reed. We start off with 1981's Venom, which also includes Sarah Miles, Sterling Hayden, Nicol Williamson and the always interesting Klaus Kinski. Combining a police procedural with home invasion, and then plopping the world's most dangerous snake into the air ducts, this is a real stew of great elements.  It works,  and we recommend it.  We follow that up with 1983's Spasms, which adds Peter Fonda as a psychiatrist who is asked to study an ESP link between Oliver Reed and a huge, demonic snake. With a few brief moments of Dick Smith makeup effects and a handful of vicious snake attacks, it mostly sucks. We cannot, in good conscious, recommend Spasms, but the similarities to Venom forced us to include it in the show. Please let us know what you thought of the show by writing to flickersfrom@yahoo.com or flickersfrom@gmail.com or just leave us a message on our Facebook page.