Tuesday, May 22, 2012

News Flash! Schlockologist Bum-Rushes Crypticon 2012!!

Hola, Fiends and Neighbors! BMN is on spring/summer hiatus. Rest assured, however, we will be returning to the Aster come fall with more cinema oddities to stun and delight!

But if you can't get enough of Ye Olde Schlockologist's snappy patter and wheelbarrows full of odd factoids, get thee to Crypticon 2012 this Memorial Day Weekend, where he'll be moderating, hosting, or co-hosting eight different panels over the Con's three day onslaught at the Sea-Tac Hilton!

All partisan bias aside, if you're anything resembling a fan of horror, you're insane to miss Crypticon. It remains Seattle's biggest horror convention, plus it's packed with amazing celebrity guests, incredibly cool merchandise and art, and more mayhem than you can shake a stake at! Internet pre-sales are no longer available, but you can still get tickets at the door (see Crypticon's trusty website for more details)...

There's a cornucopia of creepy delights on Crypticon's panels, so it'd behoove you to check out the complete list of Crypticon 2012's panels here. If'n you're interested in what Your Schlockologist Truly will be up to, though, here's the rundown of the Schlockologist's Schedule...

Friday, May 25:

9pm, Emerald Ballroom B: Indie Theaters in the Area--What to See Where
Veteran Crypticon panelist/filmmaker Eric Morgret and Steve Holetz (co-host of The BoneBat Show podcast ) join Your Schlockologist Truly for a chat about the Best Indie Theaters in Seattle. Want to learn where you can catch the finest and strangest offerings in independent/genre/cult cinema in the Pacific Northwest? Itching to tell the world what obscure classick you'd love to see on a big screen? Look no further!

10pm, Emerald Ballroom B: The Campier the Better--Movies that Don't Try to Hide What They Are: Campy, Cheesy Fun! 
Bizarro Believers, this one is just made for you! Esteemed horror author John Skipp, actor/director TJ Nordaker, pro-wrestler/horror expert Ronnie Angel, and some motormouthed schlockologist will wax rhapsodic and enthusiastic about the nature--and the warped joys--of bottom-of-the-barrel cinema!

Saturday, May 26:

11am, Emerald Ballroom C: The Universal Monsters and Their Forms Through the Years
Frankenstein's Monster, Dracula, The Wolfman, The Mummy, and The Creature from the Black Lagoon have endured as iconic horror characters for decades now. Join me, T.C. O'Reilly, Scott Baker, William Bivins, and Mark Rahner, as we discuss the importance of these characters, and why they still exact such a hold on the imagination!

Noon, Emerald Ballroom C: An Interview with Ricou Browning
Actor, Director, Stuntman, Writer...Ricou Browning's worn several hats during his incredible career. But he's best known for portraying one of the greatest monsters in the cinema pantheon--The Creature from the Black Lagoon. Yours Truly is honored to be interviewing this show-biz legend for Crypticon 2012!

3pm, Emerald Ballroom C: An Interview with Richard Kiel and Marilyn Burns
Talk about movie icons. Actor Richard Kiel is known worldwide as one of James Bond's most distinctive and formidable foes, the menacing assassin Jaws. And Marilyn Burns earned her place in horror history when she ran the terror gauntlet as the leading lady in the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Come spend an hour listening to stories and insights from these two titans of genre cinema!

4pm, Emerald Ballroom C: An Interview with Don Coscarelli
When Ye Olde Schlockologist was but a tyke, he saw a low-budget horror movie that was so strange, so creepy, and so wildly imaginative that it literally changed his life. That movie was Phantasm, and its director, Don Coscarelli, returns to Crypticon to talk about his career. With a repertoire that includes classics like The Beastmaster and Bubba Ho-Tep, you can count on Mr. Coscarelli to deliver one of Crypticon's liveliest and most fun interviews!

5pm, Emerald Ballroom C: An Interview with Dee Wallace
She played unpretentious, very real women who faced the extraordinary in E.T, and the terrifying in The Howling and Cujo. Hear this acclaimed and beloved character actress talk about everything from working with Steven Spielberg to facing a coven of werewolves!

Sunday, May 27:

Noon, Emerald Ballroom C: The Body Politik--Body Horror Under the Microscope
Man's fixation with his own mortality (and with the thousand natural shocks that his flesh is heir to) have spawned one of the most compelling sub-genres of horror to rise to prominence in recent years, thanks to filmmakers like David Cronenberg and Eli Roth. Sit in on (and participate in) this in-depth discussion on this distinctive tendril of horror cinema with Pulitzer-prize-winning author Mark Rahner, horror scribe Cody Goodfellow, and Your Schlockologist Truly!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Deep Red: Bizarro Movie Night Salutes Italian Horror Cinema this Saturday!

This week's Bizarro Movie Night presentation at the Aster Coffee is boldly breaking Bizarro Movie Night tradition, with a screening of...

A good movie.

Yes, you read right; a good movie. Rest assured, though, it'll still be certifiably Bizarro.

Some of the finest, strangest, most vividly colorful, and most feverishly imaginative horror films ever made sprang forth from Italy in the last half of the twentieth century. And the most important creative figure in that country's genre output was Mario Bava.

Bava paid his dues as a special effects man and assistant director on several Italian action films and dramas throughout the 1950's. Then in 1960 he made his directorial debut with Black Sunday, an atmospheric black-and-white chiller that marked the first leading role for Barbara Steele, a raven-haired British actress whose large, expressive eyes and alien beauty made her a horror movie icon for the ages.

Three years later, Bava made Black Sabbath, a horror movie anthology in which his penchant for eye-popping primary colors and heady atmosphere came into full flower. Without really trying, Black Sabbath established several templates for the horror genre over the next two decades. It gave birth to a distinctive sub-genre known as the giallo, and bridged the gap between the elegant subtlety of the old-school Universal monster movies and the more violent and psycho-sexual content of modern horror cinema.

Throughout the 1960's, '70's, and '80's, Italian directors such as Dario Argento, Antonio Margheriti, and Lucio Fulci further pushed the boundaries of the horror film. And the ripple effects of Mario Bava's influence echo today through more extreme thrillers like Jonathan Demme's Silence of the Lambs, and within the untethered color palate of director Tim Burton (himself such an enormous Bava fan that he toyed for years with remaking Bava's Black Sunday).

We're planning on screening Black Sabbath at the Aster on Saturday. In addition to being a terrific, gloriously creepy film on its own, it's also an important milestone in the cinema of the fantastic. And with Your Schlockologist Truly on hand to introduce this masterwork, you're nuts to miss it!