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PCR #217  (Vol. 5, No. 21)  This edition is for the week of May 17--23, 2004.

Florida’s Commuter Airlines from the 1960s to the 1980s: Part Four
 by William Moriaty
"Shrek 2"
 by Mike Smith
Flo-HORROR-da....Tony Randall and Alan King
 by Andy Lalino
Dumbsfeld’s New Camera....Single Sex Marriage....The Liberal Media....Scream 13, The Election Horror
 by Vinnie Blesi
More On Moore....Passing On....Meet The Beatles, Part 17
 by Mike Smith
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Andy Lalino
Oddservations by Andy Lalino


It's no secret that the sweltering state of Florida has played host to many genre films over the years when motion picture productions decide to shoot here. From the early days of cinema well into the pixel wizardry of today, studios and filmmakers have picked us as their state of choice, whether it's the -uh- weather, the local talent, the "look" of the state, or whatever, Florida has had an impressive history of fandom filmmaking.

Most of the movies that made the list are our beloved B-movies, and are forgotten by the general moviegoing audience, so don't go looking here for the $200 million epics.

I'd like to take the opportunity to list some of the great (and not-so-great) genre films that have been at least partially shot in the state of Florida. By no means complete, this guide serves as a general overview. If I've omitted anything (Will knows Fla. like the back of his hand, so I know he'll think of more than I came up with) please e-mail N'sPCR and amend the list.

Let's do it!

Genre motion pictures (at least partially) filmed in Florida:

"Deathdream" - This Bob ("Porky's") Clark/Alan Ormsby team-up was shot in Brooksville, and was made after the success of their previous collaboration, "Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things", which is also on the list. This film is highlighted in the current issue of Fangoria and is soon to be released on DVD by Blue Underground.

"Jeepers Creepers" - Featuring the famous character "The Creeper". Shot in the Ocala area (note the spooky oak trees with the moss hanging from them). The filmmakers made the mistake of shooting in August - a blistering month. Maybe that's why they opted to shoot the sequel elsewhere.

"Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things" - See "Deathdream" above. A favorite zombie film shot down in Miami.

"Shock Waves" (aka "Death Corps") - Shot in South Florida. Some scenes were filmed at the Biltmore hotel, now a popular resort.

"The Punisher" - We all know about that one, don't we? Filmed in Tampa.

"Empire of the Ants" - A Bert I. Gordon '70s fave. Not sure where this was shot, so if anyone knows, please write in.

"Frogs" - An AIP favorite filmed at an actual plantation in Ft. Walton Beach, which is in Florida's panhandle.

"Blood Feast" - No list would be complete without recognition of the Godfather of Gore, Herschell Gordon Lewis, who resides in Ft. Lauderdale. Many of his popular gore films were filmed in Florida, starting with this one in 1960 (released in 1963). Filmed in Miami.

"2000 Maniacs" - Another HGL horror epic, shot in Central Florida.

"Gruesome Twosome" - HGL. Shot in Miami.

"Wizard of Gore" - HGL

"Death Curse of Tartu" - Like HGL, B-movie deity Bill Grefe was a lesser-known drive-in icon. Many, if not all, of his films were shot in South Florida.

"Stanley" - Bill Grefe's infamous snake attack movie, made on the heels of the success of "Willard". Shot in the Everglades of South Florida.

"Sting of Death" - Bill Grefe's jellyfish monster epic. Shot in South Florida.

"Matinee" - The Joe Dante comedy inspired by his '50s sci-fi moviegoing experiences. Shot in South Florida/Key West.

"Blood Freak" - A little-known exploitation sickie that resurfaced thanks to Something Weird Video. Features an incredible "Turkey Monster" that gobbles before it kills druggies. Best watched on Thanksgiving Day. Not sure exactly where this was lensed.

"The Beast That Killed Women" and "The Monster of Camp Sunshine" + various nudist colony exploitation films - Exploitation gurus Harry Novak (Box-office International Pictures), Brad "Blood Freak" Grinter and "Blood Feast" producer William Friedman made many nudie films shot at the famous nudist colonies of West Central Florida, including those nearby us in towns like Land O' Lakes. There are more of these films available on DVD than you might expect (thanks to SWV). One nudist colony short featured on the "Blood Freak" DVD features the male star of "Blood Feast" in full-frontal nude scenes. Not for the faint of heart.

"Red Dragon" - I believe some scenes were shot in Florida.

"Jaws 3-D" - I actually had a girl from my high school who was in this movie. She's the one who screams when, while walking down a hallway in an underwater viewing tube, a severed head floats up through a window. Shot in Orlando I think at Sea World.

"Day of the Dead" - Parts of the final installment (or is it?) of George A. Romeo's zombie trilogy were shot I believe in Ft. Myers.

"Creature from the Black Lagoon" - Some scenes partially filmed in Wakulla Springs State Park. In fact, Tallahassee hosts "Creaturefest", a CFTBL homage, each year to commemorate the famous Universal Monster. Tarzan movies were also shot there.

"Cocoon" - Who can forget the exciting days in 1984 when Ron Howard's hit film was shot in St. Petersburg?

"Airport '77" - Filmed in Wakulla Springs.

"Goldfinger" - James Bond film partially filmed in Miami.

"Live and Let Die" - Partially filmed in South Florida. Bill Grefe was 2nd unit cameraman.

"Voodoo Blood Bath" (excerpts included in "I Eat Your Skin") - Del Tenney's VBB was shot in Miami/Key Biscayne/Coral Gables, and later ended up in Jerry Gross' sickie epic "I Eat Your Skin".

Tony Randall & Alan King
Very sad to hear of the passing of these two entertainment legends. I best remember, as I'm sure most people do, Tony Randall as "Felix Unger" in the classic sitcom "The Odd Couple", which I watched religiously in the '70s. Alan King was best known to genre fans for being in Stephen King's "Cat's Eye", but was also a frequently-seen comic on the variety and talk shows of the '60s and '70s, which is where I remember him from most. They will be missed.

"Oddservations" is ©2004 by Andy Lalino.  The Oddservations banner is a creation of Andy Lalino. All other graphics (unless otherwise noted) are creations of Nolan B. Canova.  All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2004 by Nolan B. Canova.