Archive for December, 2013

Sole cinema

Sole SurvivorA young woman is a passenger in a vehicle that gets into an accident, and she is the only survivor. After the accident, she starts seeing ghostly figures. Carnival Of Souls? No, it’s Sole Survivor, but its remarkable similarities to the Herk Harvey movie are just minor problems compared to others found in the movie.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.

Operation Catchup

It’s been a big year for me putting off and/or not getting around to reviewing movies I meant to write up.  Here’s phase one of a project meant to correct that:


Asylum (1972), in which a psychiatrist’s job interview curiously devolves into four short stories by Robert Bloch…

A Carol for Another Christmas (1964), in which Rod Serling deploys every ounce of his famously heavy hand reworking the classic holiday ghost story as propaganda for the United Nations…

From Beyond the Grave (1973), in which a vendor of cursed antiques provides the connective tissue for four short stories by R. Chetwynd-Hayes…

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013), which is the odd review out this time around…

Legend of Dinosaurs and Monster Birds (1977), in which Toei apparently try to salvage an abortive attempt to rip off Dino De Laurentiis’s King Kong by ripping off Jaws instead…

Madhouse (1974), which is sort of like Theater of Blood, only not good…


RoboCop 3 (1991/1993), which is a lot like RoboCop 2, only even worse.


El Santo rules the wasteland-- and also 1000 Misspent Hours and Counting.

Crawl if you must to see this

The BabyThe movie The Baby is one of the strangest American cinematic productions to come out of the 1970s. Which of course means it is greatly entertaining and unlike any other movie you’ve ever seen.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.

Not Bonding with John Gardner

Three more of John Gardner’s James Bond novels reviews. This are fast-paced but really creepy in FOR SPECIAL SERVICES (Bond beds the daughters of his best friend AND his worst enemy), silly in ICEBREAKER, and boring, terrible, and nonsensical in ROLE OF HONOR. Thrill as you read 40 pages of James Bond learning to program in COBOL!



Keith Allison is the chief Bacchanologist at Teleport City.

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A Pile of New Reviews

Our trip through Space: 1999 history continues…

Space: 1999 – The Future is Taupe

This new take on the concept would feature the inhabitants of a moon base being hurtled out into space after a cataclysmic accident on Earth blows the moon out of orbit. Unfortunately, Anderson’s sleight of hand with his idea for UFO 2 didn’t fool ITC president Lew Grade, who remained unconvinced after the mediocre performance of UFO that a new Anderson science fiction series would be any more successful.


Space: 1999 – A Galaxy of Stars

One of the other things I love about revisiting the show is seeing so many faces that are now familiar but were, in 1979 or 1980 or so, unknown to me. Space: 1999 benefitted it seemed from the collapse of the British film industry in the 1970s. This collapse left a lot of A-list actors scrambling for work, and that means that a show like Space: 1999 was suddenly able to afford to hire some of the most recognizable faces in British cinema.


And some Swedish Ninjas…

Ninja Mission

In fact, it was his first ninja movie, Misja ninja or Ninja Mission, that gave the previously obscure and largely unknown director of “Swedish westerns” his boost into the sort of high profile superstardom that caused him to be showered with such accolades as “an embarrassment to Sweden,” “Sweden’s Roger Corman,” and “fucking Mats Helge.”


And the first of John Gardner’s James Bond novels

License Renewed

That said, overall the book is as about as good as Casino Royale and about as flawed, though in different ways. For the most part though, I enjoyed it just enough not to mind the flaws — as was the case with Casino RoyaleLicense Renewed is not the sort of book I would go to war for — if you were bored by it or actively hated it, I would understand — but I thought it was perfectly acceptable. If you, like me, were interested to see where Bond would go after Fleming (and Amis) and now that it was the 1980s, then License Renewed isn’t going to let you down, but it’s not really going to excite you either.



Keith Allison is the chief Bacchanologist at Teleport City.

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Not the misspelling of an Irish rock band

UtuThe New Zealand movie Utu is an uneven but overall compelling south of the equator western of sorts that is based on actual incidents.

Keith Bailey is the proprietor of The Unknown Movies Page.

I Didn’t Really Have a Plan for This One.

The Legend of Hillbilly John (1973), in which a hippied-out version of Manly Wade Wellman’s Silver John goes to training camp for a battle with Satan…

Miami Connection (1987), in which a hard rock band made up of tae kwon do devotees battles a rival band, a drug-dealing street gang, and an army of biker ninjas…

Siren of Bagdad (1953), in which an underachieving magician joins forces with a deposed sultan to get the latter his throne back, mainly because it seems like the best way to reclaim the harem of dancing girls whom the usurper bought from the bandits who stole them from the sorcerer…

Twixt (2011), in which a hack horror novelist lucks into an opportunity to become slightly less hacky in a town full of nasty secrets…

The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960), which I can just about promise you is unlike any other version of the familiar story that you’ve seen…


Zombieland (2009), in which a dork, a redneck, and a couple of female con-artists seek shelter from the undead apocalypse in a cheesy amusement park.


El Santo rules the wasteland-- and also 1000 Misspent Hours and Counting.