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Now in our fifth calendar year
PCR #241  (Vol. 5, No. 45)  This edition is for the week of November 1--7, 2004.

What’s In A Name? A Look at the Origin of Names of Florida’s Towns and Counties N to P
 by Will Moriaty
"The Incredibles"
 by Mike Smith
Brian Wilson's SMILE, reviewed
 by Terence Nuzum
At the Late Night Halloween Horror Picture Show 2004....The Horror Films....The Special Guests....The Filmmakers....Fans/Friends
 by Andy Lalino
The Voting Day Victory....What's Next For Creature Feature....AOL To Cut Jobs
 by Brandon Jones
Bush - Head To The Mountains
 by Matt Drinnenberg
Election Fallout....Vinnie Come Home....Music Notes....Stamp of Approval....Scary Movie Moments....Speaking of Scary....Passing On....Meet The Beatles, Part 41
 by Mike Smith
Archives of Nolan's Pop Culture Review
Archives 2004
Archives 2003
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Archives 2001
Archives 2000
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Andy Lalino
Oddservations by Andy Lalino

At the Late Night Halloween Horror Picture Show 2004

Fanboys all: from left, Andy Lalino, Lonnie Dohlen, and Nolan Canova
For the second year in a row, Enigma Films, helmed by Rick Danford, and my company Metropol Productions have hosted a terrific indie horror film showcase: The Halloween Horror Picture Show. This year's horror event boasted a larger attendance than last year's and an equal amount of Special Guests, filmmakers/actors in attendance, surprises, and terrific horror films from around the world. Best of all, the admission donations went directly to a great charity: Florida Hurricane Relief. As filmmaker Chris Woods quoted in his press releases: HORROR FIGHTS HURRICANES! Yes, indeed!

"Scarecrow/zombie" Sandy Lalino with Filthy costume designer Julie Bartel
The night's festivities where hosted by award-winning actor/comedian John Biebrich ("Rocky" from "Filthy"), who injected his own side-splitting humorous style to the occasion. Dressed in a night blue tux created by fiancée (and "Filthy" Costume Designer Julie Bartel), John truly resembled and reprised his role as "Rocky" in a live environment. Great job, Johnny!

The HHPS '04 would not have been possible without the generous invitation of University Film & Video Association president Rodrick Colbert and fellow UFVA member Fred, who manned the console and made the festival go smoothly.

First and foremost, the indie horror films this year were amazing. Jorge Olguin's feature-length "Eternal Blood (Sangre Eterna)" kicked off the show. "Eternal..." is the first Chilean horror film, superbly and competently directed by Olguin and featuring a fine cast of Chilean actors. I first discovered Jorge's film at Screamfest LA last year, when it was a contender for "Best Foreign Horror Film"; I actually became fast friends with the director and his cast, who flew in from Chile to be part of the festival. The film was sent to us courtesy of Anthony Timpone of Fangoria magazine, and was the overdubbed version - thanks, Anthony! An alternate subtitled version can be found on both VHS and DVD from Fangoria/MTI home video.

Nolan Canova, left, and filmmaker Jason Liquori talk fandom with attendees
Following "Eternal Blood" was Andrew Kasch's nightmarishly good "The Fall", a B&W short film that speaks through images and metaphor in lieu of traditional storytelling. The imagery and dreamscapses you will experience in "The Fall" are like nothing you have seen before. Some scenes truly push the limits of sanity, when certain characters are "given birth to", others breast-feed a "thing" on the wall, and a generous amount of tentacle-eating. "The Fall" is presented without dialogue, and features a terrific ambient soundtrack. Kasch is a filmmaker to keep your eye on.

A couple of cool surprises were featured; one courtesy of Rick Danford, who brought back a four-minute teaser from the New York City Horror Film Festival, which displayed a great assemblage of the world's most famous horror films ("Dead Alive", "Re-Animator", '78 "Dawn of the Dead") to a headache-inducing thrash metal single. Speaking of headache-inducing singles, also on the line-up was neo-rockers 'Pitbull Daycare', who showcased their new video from the horror movie "Saw" called "You Make Me Feel So Dead". To a guy like me who still listens to Duran Duran, The Human League, and David Sylvian, it simply wasn't up my alley, although I'm sure that young skull-fulls of mush enjoyed it thoroughly.

Producer Jason Thomas, left, converses with Nolan Canova as Professor Paul Bearer II lurks on!
Next up was "Gotta Make Them Angels", a fun and gory tale of a plump, bible-toting female ghost who, at the beginning of the film, slaughters her daughters for fornicating in her house, and then kills herself. Her spirit is still restless, however, and seeks more victims, who are aided by a mysterious figure seen largely from a window. The screening was attended by one of the film's actors/screenwriters: Allan Hooper, who drove down from Atlanta to be at the festival. The evening's only glitch was pixellization during the screening of GMTA, but it was rectified by intermission time, and the film was shown again in its entirety. GMTA is a tense, taut thriller that is highly entertaining. Highly recommended.

The HHPS '04 showcased a special block of films by Florida filmmakers in celebration of the Sunshine State indie horror filmmaker scene. The block began with an Andrew Allan/Andy Lalino collaboration, "Demonlition Derby", previewed in the form of a promotional trailer, featuring "The Nightmare Collection"/"Filthy" actress Krista Grotte, and actresses Jeania Ingle and Neenah as "Demonettes". The preview was conceived to promote the project, which is currently in pre-production by Sunshinola Brand Motion Pictures and Metropol Productions.

Next up was my horror film "Filthy", which seemed to enjoy an enthusiastic response from viewers, especially Tampa Bay horror fiction rising star Jeff Strand, who states: "FILTHY is one of the sickest pieces of filmmaking I have ever seen." Another happy customer!

Rick Danford's horror short "The Reaper" was up next; an Official Selection of the New York Horror Film Festival. "The Reaper" stars Krista Grotte and Damien Beurer and has received great reactions from fans as it makes its way through film festivals around the country.

Following "The Reaper" was a piece from Jason Liquori's "The Lunar Pack" werewolf anthology entitled "Sheep's Clothing", an effective short that melds the werewolf sub-genre with film noir (in fact, it's presented in B&W). SC features a terrific transformation scene and many plot twists that keeps the viewer on pins and needles.

Filmmakers Chris Woods and Simon Lynx presented an earlier effort, "Chameleon", next. "Chameleon" is a horror/sci-fi hybrid in which a nurse's body is taken over by an alien entity. I unfortunately didn't get a chance to view the Icon Film Studios release at the HHPS, but look forward to screening it in the near future. Save a copy for me, Chris!

Andy Lalino, left, with Creature Feature producer Jason Thomas
Professor Paul Bearer II with Filthy actor, John Biebrich
Other films were late additions to the line-up, which I did not get a chance to screen: "post-op" and "Wishes in the Dark". Both horror films promise great thrills and chills and were well-received that night.

The night's grand finale was England's "London Voodoo", an excellent indie feature with great performances, cinematography, and direction. LV wrapped at about 1:45am, and needless to say the crowd and organizers were eager to wrap up and get some well-deserved sleep!

One of the first guests asked to make an appearance was Crazed Fanboy creator/webmaster Nolan Canova. Nolan spoke the first half of the night, telling the unenlightened a little bit about the Crazed Fanboy/Nolan's Pop Culture Review website. Nolan also congratulated those in the local/statewide indie film scene, which he oddserved has gotten more exciting over the years, no doubt due to Nolan and his writers' support of our efforts. I thought Nole did a dynamite job up on stage, despite allusions to the contrary beforehand by the great bearded one himself.

Andy Lalino and Professor Paul Bearer II
The Professor holds up one of his favorite horrible movies
A real treat for horror fans who grew up in the Tampa Bay area from the '70s to the '90s was the presence of WTOG Channel 44 horror host of the all-new Creature Feature Prof. Paul Bearer II and the show's producer Jason Thomas. As most readers know by now, we all received a special treat in October by having Dr. Paul Bearer's nephew, the Professor, host a less-than-thrilling line up of horror films (not that I would classify "Critters 4", "Aberration", "Amityville: Dollhouse", and the 1996 version of "Humanoids from the Deep" as such) for the month. The real reason to watch was of course to see Prof. Paul Bearer, and fans have not been disappointed. It's interesting that the Professor has his own style, yet certain mannerisms, sounds, and the environment recall the original Creature Feature show with apt nostalgia.

Both the Professor and Jason couldn't have been more accommodating and pleasant, but their appearance onstage was never realized in that they had to leave for another engagement before the first feature film ended. They did graciously mingle with fans/filmmakers outside the theater doors, and everyone had a blast meeting what very well could be the next big horror host this area has seen since the original Creature Feature went off the air in the '90s. If you've seen the new Creature Feature, be sure to e-mail WTOG Channel 44 and let them know how much you liked it, for they may bring it back in January 2005 if the response is good.

Actress Krista Grotte, a rising horror starlet, hypnotized the crowd as someone that everyone recognized from "Filthy", "The Nightmare Collection" (playing "Necro Nancy"), and "The Reaper". She took the stage to introduce her more recent works, the trailer for "Demonlition Derby" and Rick Danford's "The Reaper", as well as "Filthy" and the Necro Nancy character. She was greeted with enthusiastic applause, in appreciation for her tireless work in local indie horror productions, where she has received much attention.

Left, Kerry Hogan (Renegade Films), right, Eddie Sturgeon (sound designer, Filthy)
Familiar B-movie actor Joel D. Wynkoop made a generous appearance in the lobby outside, where he turned fans onto his noted work for indie director Tim Ritter. His performances include: "Creep" (1995), "Dirty Cop, No Donut" (1999), and "Twisted Illusions 1 & 2" (1985 & 2004; directed both films also). Joel's the real thing, beginning his career in the early days of home video in the mid-'80s.

Also making an appearance in the lobby for the fans were two stars of Jason Liquori's werewolf thriller "The Lunar Pack" anthology: actresses Hollie Winnard and Chanel Bagwell. Both ladies were eager to chat with fans, but Hollie nearly got usurped by her roaming Chihuahua dog. Maybe it was a were-Chihuahua?

Renegade Films' Kerry Hogan (resembling "Shaun" in "Shaun of the Dead") stopped by. I hadn't seen Kerry in a few months and it was good to check in with him. He promised there would indeed be another Saints & Sinners film festival!

Other Special Guests who couldn't attend were actress Sheri Lawrence (Fermentia in "Filthy"), editor Tom Linkiewicz of Illusion Films, actress "Cookie" and indie filmmaker Andrew Allan.

Relic Films' Greg Rivera invites you to The Uninvited
A decent turnout of filmmakers made the event quite exciting, including Enigma Films' Rick Danford ("The Reaper", "All Hallows Eve"), who co-organized the event; Chris Woods, Simon Lynx, and Shelby McIntyre from Icon Film Studios ("Chameleon", "Bleed", "To Live is to Die") who had a table with their films for sale; Hocus Focus Productions' Jason Liquori, who also had a booth promoting his popular "The Lunar Pack" DVD with actresses Hollie Winnard and Chanel Bagwell, and myself.

The night's biggest pleasant surprise was the arrival of fellow Durannie Greg Rivera, who I hadn't seen since last year's HHPS. Of course, my first question was "Have you directed a new episode of The Uninvited"? Greg filled me in that he was formulating some new ideas of the continuation of the series. We had a great in-depth discussion of the state of horror films in the year 2004, and found that we have a lot in common and agreed with each other on most topics (CGI in horror/sci-fi; the "Star Wars" Special Editions, Duran Duran, what happened to George Lucas?) and had a deep affinity for early John Carpenter films. It was great seeing Greg again; I only wish we lived closer so we could hang out more.

It was great seeing N'sPCR contributor Lonnie Dohlen there. Lonnie is one of the biggest Dr. Paul Bearer fans out there, and the consummate horror fan. Lonnie has contributed an astounding archive of information and materials to the Dr. Paul Bearer database; and I could not have done it without his monumental assistance. Who else do you know who traveled to Winston-Salem North Carolina to visit the birthplace of Dick Bennick/Dr. Paul Bearer? In my book, that makes Lonnie a true-blue DPB Superfan. Lonnie picked up Nole on the way up, and stopped by to see him take the stage, as well as enjoy a screening of "Filthy" and other films. A big thank you to Lonnie for traveling all the way from Bradenton to come out to the HHPS.

Horror authors Lynne Hansen and Jeff Strand at the HHPS '04!
I finally got to meet local horror celeb Jeff Strand and his wife Lynne Hansen, both horror authors, at the show. Jeff and I communicated on the Horror Channel and Crazed Fanboy message boards, and I was glad to know that he was going to be there for our event. Recently, Jeff and Lynne had made an appearance at last month's Tampa Theater screening of Peter Jackson's "Dead Alive", which I came close to attending (*cough*thanks, Nole!*cough*) where they signed copies of their books for fans. Jeff is the author of several horror novels with a humorous twist, including "Graverobbers Wanted (No Experience Necessary)", "Single White Psychopath Seeks Same", "Out of Whack", and others. "Graverobbers..." is currently being made as a low-budget horror movie by Local Talent Films Jeff is a heck of a nice guy and a wonderful addition to our horror fan community. That's the great thing about these events; you get to meet a great group of people. Log on to Jeff's website: www.jeffstrand.com

Lynne Hansen is a horror author herself, specializing in young adult horror fiction. Her works include: "The Return - Heritage of Horror Book 1: Zombies During the Revolutionary War", "The Change - Heritage of Horror Book 2: Werewolves in the 1870s Frontier Kansas", and "Altdeath.com". For more about Lynne, check out www.heritageofhorror.com

Lastly, I'd like to thank my lovely wife (actually, she wasn't too lovely that night; she was a scary scarecrow!) Sandy for coming out and supporting us on that fun night.

And thank you for coming out and supporting the HHPS '04! See you next year!

The day after the last Oddservatons went live, I received word (on Yahoo! News!) that a 1971 Ed Wood film that was believed lost had been discovered in an L.A. warehouse. Now, before you sit there thinking that it may be possibly be a "Plan 10 from Outer Space", I should warn you that it's a "porn" film! The movie's titled "Necromania" which ign.com describes as "the sexual enlightenment of a young couple at the hands of a coven of witches". Sounds great! The film is to be retailed on an adult website!

Regardless if it is porn or not, it is wonderful to have a lost Wood film resurface after all these years, and is one of two X-rated films Wood directed. The film is actually chronicled well (by actors, friends, and crew) in Rudolph Grey's book "Ed Wood: Nightmare of Ecstasy". Get your copy now!

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