Posts Tagged James Bond

The Madness of Wild Boys Howling on the Streets

Got a lot to catch up on, but here’s the latest pile of Teleport City articles.

These three have been salvaged and revised from the murky past:

STREETS OF FIRE
street2“The dialog is stilted and phony, but in a weird way that is totally believable. It’s fifties tough guy slang but with the rapid-fire panache of the eighties, or maybe of a forties film noir. So really, not so much how tough guys talked as it is how we think tough guys talked, playing once again to the concept of American mythology. Hill’s rock ‘n’ roll tough guys stand as tall and symbolic as the cowboys of a John ford western. Every line is a carefully crafted homage to the concept of rock ‘n’ roll rebel. It’s corny in spots, but never unintentionally so — and even though that stilted corniness may be intentional, it’s never ironic or overly wink-wink the way modern films are.”
HOWLING II: YOUR SISTER IS A WEREWOLF
featAnd yet, as undeniably bad as it all is, there I am, every time it’s on television. And what makes it worse is that I own the DVD! I own the goddamn DVD and still I watch it whenever it’s on television. Let this be a lesson to anyone who ever takes my advice on anything; if you ever find yourself faced with a difficult decision and ask yourself, “What would Keith from Teleport City do?” then your immediate next thought should be, “Watch Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf.”
THEY WERE 11
theywere11_1There is really only one action scene in the entire movie, and that’s a pie fight. Yet despite the dearth of robots on roller skates shooting cannons at each other, They Were 11 is an engaging, tense, and engrossing piece of science fiction that makes you feel like it’s action-packed even though it isn’t. The basic premise was derived from an old Japanese story about a group of children at a playground who suddenly realize that there is one more child there than there should be. There’s a good chance the extra kid, whichever one he may be, is some sort of monster.
And these two were written for The Cultural Gutter, a site for which I am writing on a monthly basis:
WHERE IS ALL YOU ANGELS
wb14-300x225Mulcahy’s big idea was to make a film version of Wild Boys, which seems rather a challenging project. Disregarding the self-indulgent structure and juvenile crudity of the book, Wild Boys is still a pulp adventure about a collapsing society that gives rise to gangs of violent, feral homosexual boys who spend all their time killing people, screwing each other, and masturbating. Not MPAA-friendly storytelling.
YOU CAN’T MAKE A MASTERPIECE WITHOUT MADNESS
gallery2-500x369Jodorowsky’s vision of the film was vast, an epic on a scale science fiction film had never attempted. A psychedelic mind warp that Jodorowsky himself said he wanted to be like taking LSD without taking LSD. He wanted his film to be nothing short of a cultural uprising, a trumpet for the legions of youth who had risen up against the establishment in the 1960s. He wanted Dune — in story, in philosophy, in daringness, in design — to be a revolution. Pavich’s documentary tells the story of how this movie never actually got made.
And finally, I am writing a book. It’s about booze and James Bond, and this is a sneak peek at the introduction, which poorly explains my concept.
BOND VIVANT: INTRODUCTION
james-bondWhen retired British Naval Intelligence commander Ian Fleming retired to his modest villa, Goldeneye (“Goldeneye, nose and throat” quipped his neighbor, the entertainer Noel Coward, who was unimpressed with Fleming’s abode) in Jamaica to write his first novel, he didn’t expect it to be much more to society at large than a passing trifle. It was an attempt to make good on a desire that boiled up in him during his wartime service, perhaps as a way to try and one-up his popular brother, Peter, who was a well-known much beloved adventurer, war hero, and writer.
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Keith Allison is the chief Bacchanologist at Teleport City.

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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!

007 IN THE AGE OF CASUAL FRIDAY

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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.

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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.

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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.”

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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.

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Keith Allison is the chief Bacchanologist at Teleport City.

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A long time in the wilderness

Timing is everything, and it was fun to coordinate the database meltdown/move to a new home for Teleport City with the same happening to the B-Masters site. But reconstruction is just about complete (still need to sweep up some drywall dust and mount my guffawin’ spittin’ Laffun Head somewhere), and I do have rather a lot of updates since last we spoke. So in the service of not flooding or making a hundred-review post, I’m going to edit things down to the most recent and encourage you to poke around.

Blood from the Mummy’s Tomb, Plague of the Zombies, Cry of the Banshee, The Mummy’s Shroud, and Revenge of Frankenstein — all reviews salvaged from the wreckage of old Teleport City, spruced up, corrected, partially rewritten, and with added artwork.

Colonel Sun – the first James Bond novel after the death of Ian Fleming, written by Kingsley Amis, who comes across as rather a bit above it all. He also really hates M.

That Prince Among Shampoos and Yes, We Have No Pappy — in case you wanted to know about James Bond’s favorite shampoo company and which cocktails to pair with bay rum aftershave, and what whiskey to buy instead of Pappy Van Winkle, the most coveted whiskey in the recorded history of spirits.

From Donald to Dean – a four part series looking at the history of Matt Helm in book and film, and examining how the stone cold assassin of the books became Dean Martin.

Japan Destroys the World — a look at four films — The Last War, Genocide, Goke: Bodysnatcher from Hell, and Prophecies of Nostradamus — in which Japan exterminates mankind in really strange fashion

I think that’s enough for today

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Keith Allison is the chief Bacchanologist at Teleport City.

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