“I AM MONSTER” (2014)

I am Monster Shannon Lark

“I AM MONSTER” is the anticipated short from the twisted but capable hands of Shannon Lark and Lorie Bowen. Being that this is a short, I’m restricted as to how much I should give away while still leaving you with an opportunity to enjoy the twists and turns in this film when you have an opportunity to watch it, so let me go over the things you really need to know.

This is high quality sexy-gorey-horror. Everything is finely polished and expertly assembled. I don’t mean that in the patronizing, “long live indie film!” kind of way. The cinematography and lighting are flawlessly professional along with every other element of the flick, leaving you free to fully immerse yourself into the twisted nightmares of Lark and Bowen.

The story is superb and unique as well, so much so that I don’t want to give any more away than the synopsis:

“Vivienne’s extraordinary fetishism has taken her to a new level: necrophilia.
She gets her kicks by violating the dead in a hospital morgue on the outskirts of Los Angeles, discarding them like trash. Tonight, however, Vivienne gets a whole new taste of what the dead can provide when she meets Jason, a fresh body who has some ideas of his own.”

Sounds fun, right!?

I literally had to watch the film three times just to take it all in. It’s as vibrant as it is dark, as sexy as it is brutal, and as brilliant as it is punishing. Lori Bowen and Shannon Lark are dangerous women in the world of horror, and I can’t wait to see what they come up with next.

You *need* to catch this a screening of this one, so you too can hate yourself for becoming aroused. Get the digs on screening dates by checking out the Film’s Official Facebook page!

I AM MONSTER Official Facebook Page

Movies That You Wanted To Rent, But Didn’t: Screamers (1979)

Time again for a journey into the  renting regret abyss, where you the reader can help me determine if I did in fact make a mistake by not snatching up a particular VHS box at the local video store.  I was always a sucker for an “eye-catching” cover and I made more than my fair share of bad rental decisions based off of that alone.  But some movies I just couldn’t find it in me to rent, no matter how awesome the art staring me in the face off of the cardboard box was.  Case in point, 1979′s Screamers:

Can’t tell you how many times I picked this one up, looked at it, then put it back down.  The tagline was very enticing to say the least.  They’re men turned inside out!  And worse…they’re still alive!’ They sure did make it sound like it would be an amazing take on the whole zombie genre.  Men turned inside out so they looked like the guy on the cover AND they were still alive?!  I pictured an army of these things coming at me, reminding me later of a bunch of Franks from Hellraiser, dripping blood all over while they tried to feast upon my flesh.  But for some reason, I never rented Screamers.  Then I did a little research for this article and realized that this seemed to be another classic case of bait and switch.  Because instead of the awesome turned inside out zombie type guys, we apparently got these fishmen instead:

Well at least the woman is somewhat hot.  Roger Corman looks like he did a better job as far as fishmen go with Humanoids Of The Deep though.  So what gives?  Why promote the cool looking turned inside out guy on the front cover?  Could it be they were just trying to cover up the fact that this was a shitty movie?  The hell you say.  That’s where I need your help because you haven’t steered me wrong yet.  Do I seek out Screamers (no, not the 1995 Peter Weller one) and watch it? Will I be rewarded at some point with the groovy turned inside out guy?  Let me know.  Because honestly, I just don’t know if I can handle a movie full of these embarrassing fishmen.

The Battle: Vestron Video VS. New World Pictures

Hulk Hogan vs. Andre The Giant.  The Titanic vs. That Iceberg.  The Whopper vs. The Big Mac.  There have been many monumental showdowns throughout history, but possibly none more monumental than the one between Vestron Video and New World Pictures.  I really built that up for something that you may not even give a shit about.  Anyway – one my my fondest memories ever during my youth was renting a VHS movie and actually having the distributor title alone pique my interest as it popped up before the movie.  It even proved to be the case for the coming attractions too, and on more than one occasion, I actually knew if I was going to fast forward through them or not based on what logo would present itself.  Besides the legendary Cannon Group, the two other distribution logos that got me excited (apparently it didn’t take much to do this) were indeed, Vestron Video and New World Pictures.


The point of this post:  Which side of the fence do you stand on?  Are you a Vestron Video kind of guy or girl, or do you ride with New World Pictures all day and every day?  Proof is in the product of course since the logos pretty much cancel each other out, so let’s throw Vestron Video under the movie microscope first.

Six words for you:  Deathstalker And The Warriors From Hell.  Wow – that’s the best they’ve got? Oh – sorry….I was reading my list in reverse.  How about An American Werewolf In London?  Now we’re cooking!  I remember this movie as being one of the first that I saw don the Vestron logo when I popped the VHS tape in my VCR.  Not impressed?  Here’s a ‘in no particular order’ list of other mentionables to help impress you:  The Monster Squad, Dolls, Rawhead Rex, Slaughter High, Blood Diner, Dolls, From Beyond, Ghoulies, Parents, Hollywood Hot Tubs, and Dirty Dancing.  Wait – one of these things is not like the other.  Dirty Dancing?  Well, it is probably Vestron Video’s most successful title, so we’ll keep it in the list and Patrick Swayze sure was dreamy and that girl was too, even before the nose job.

Alright.  Not bad Vestron Video.  Now let’s see if New World Pictures wants to whip theirs out on the table and see if they can measure up.  The movie that I watched over and over that always pops into my mind when I think of the New World Pictures logo is Hellraiser.  Yes, before you were rewarded with that homeless guy eating a bunch of crickets in the pet store, you got to see that snazzy red logo pop up on the screen to let you know you were watching quality cinema from New World Pictures. But if you thought Hellraiser was the best they had, think again.  Time to roll out their ‘in no particular order’ list:  Death Race 2000, Eaten Alive!, Piranha, The Brood, Humanoids From The Deep, Rock ‘N’ Roll High School, The Slumber Party Massacre, Fraternity Vacation, Reform School Girls, Soul Man, and House.  Well, with a racist but light hearted movie like Soul Man in their roster, how is Vestron Video going to be able to deliver that knock-out punch to New World Pictures???

Simple…they won’t be able to.  And do you know why?  Because New World Pictures is home to The Stuff!  And nobody can fuck with The Stuff!  Because The Stuff is indestructible and it will eat you from the inside out.  And Vestron Video has nothing to combat that with.  Nope – not even Earth Girls Are Easy can take out something as delicious and destructive as The Stuff!  And so ends our battle for the ages between Vestron Video and New World Pictures.  You put up a valiant effort Vestron, but in the end, you had nothing to destroy a light, fluffy, tasty, man-eating dessert with. Isn’t that right, lady with The Stuff all over her face?

Movies That You Wanted To Rent, But Didn’t: Black Roses (1988)

As mentioned in a previous post, there are movies specifically from the 80′s (because that’s when the VHS rental craze was booming) that I just couldn’t pull the trigger on while browsing in my local Mom & Pop video store.  I talked about 1985′s Junior and also about the post-apocalyptic 1986 crowd-pleaser, Dead End Drive-In.  This time, I’m going with a movie that always captured my eye with it’s intricate cover art, and considering I was one step away at the time of growing my hair out to look like C.C. Deville from the glam rock group Poison and stocking up on Aqua Net, I’m surprised I never snatched this one up to slap in my rusty VCR.  Yep – I’m talking about 1988′s, Black Roses.

So somehow, I was able to watch Slaughterhouse Rock and Rock ‘N’ Roll Nightmare, but couldn’t use any of my precious time to view Black Roses, despite my fascination with the artwork.  Reading the back of the VHS cover now, I realize what I missed out on: BLOODSHED, RIOTS, MASS MURDERS…..and the fact that THE SPECIAL EFFECTS ARE FANTASTIC!  Wow – did I blow it or what?  Not only that, but upon further investigation, Julie Adams of Creature From The Black Lagoon fame and Big Pussy from The Sopranos are in this???  And 80′s rock icons Tesla are on the soundtrack???  Dear God….what have I done?

Luckily, in the age that we live in now, it’s rather easy to right my VHS renting hesitation wrongs, because we have something called Youtube and Netflix.  Do I dare enter into the apparent 80′s awesomeness that is Black Roses?  That’s where I need your help.  Give me some insight as to which direction I should go in, and I’ll be eternally grateful.  Until then, I think I’ll just go get my heavy metal horror fix and watch the lovely and busty Traci Lords in the terrible, Shock Em’ Dead.