100 Days of Horror welcomes you to ... SATANFEST 2013

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"Y'all know me, know how I earn a livin'. I'll catch this bird for you, but it ain't gonna be easy. Bad fish! Not like going down to the pond and chasing bluegills and tommycods. This shark, swallow ya whole. Little shakin', little tenderizin', and down you go. And we gotta do it quick, that'll bring back the tourists, that'll put all your businesses on a payin' basis. But it's not gonna be pleasant! I value my neck a lot more than three thousand bucks, chief. I'll find him for three, but I'll catch him, and kill him, for ten. But you've gotta make up your minds. If you want to stay alive, then ante up. If you want to play it cheap, be on welfare the whole winter. I don't want no volunteers, I don't want no mates, there's too many captains on this island. Ten thousand dollars for me by myself. For that you get the head, the tail, the whole damn thing."

Monday, August 2, 2010

100 Days of Horror Day ten - "Beast of Yucca Flats!"

Great green globs of greasy grimy gopher guts to one and to all this assified Monday morn.

As I typed the words "100 Days of Horror Day Ten," it hit me that there are only 90 DAYS UNTIL HALLOWEEN! This, to me, is great news. I know the rest of the civilized world is worrying about back-to-school shopping and planning vacations and the lot ... meanwhile I am thinking about bonfires and jack-o-lanterns and horror hayrides.

Look man, a brother has to prioritize, okay? Some of you plan your Xmas shopping in July, don't you? Well, I'm pricing disco balls and rubber masks for the upcoming Halloween party (which is yet to have an official date but that info will be forthcoming soon).

Anyway, that also means that I have actually been at this for ten whole days now, which as I have previously indicated is quite a feat for me. I give up on everything eventually - diets, resolutions, parenting (just kidding, kids). Hell I can't go a day without jerking off for god's sake. How am I even doing this? Why haven't I said, "Fuck it, I have better things to do ...like jerk off"?

I do not know. And probably it's best not to question it.

So today's movie is a real find. "Beast of Yucca Flats" is one of those rare movies that is actually so bad - so, so very bad - that it's hard to assess it on any level except a cerebral one. You just have to fool yourself into thinking that it's in that "so bad it's good" category, when in truth it is just simply bad. Badly written, badly acted, badly directed ... you sense a pattern emerging here, Agent Scully?

By the way, if you want to watch this turd - which even Tom Servo and Crow couldn't make funny - then check out www.internetarchive.org because (surprise) it's actually in the Public Domain. Because who wants to claim ownership to this bastard? No one, that's who.

The Beast of Yucca Flats (1961): Directed by Coleman Frances. Starring Tor Johnson and Conrad Brooks.

The Skinny: This is a clunker. Tor Johnson (of famed B-movie director Ed Wood renown) stars as a “noted Soviet scientist” who gets trapped in the blast radius of a nuclear bomb and becomes – you guessed it – the aforementioned “Beast.” And he roams Yucca Flats killing folk. That’s pretty much it. And there's a weird rape scene at the very beginning of the movie that is totally unrelated to the rest of the film and is never questioned or brought up by any other character. Yeah, it's THAT kind of movie.

What’s Good: Hm, interesting question. It’s good inasmuch as it should stand as an example of what not to do as a filmmaker. The audio is out of sync because it was shot without sound and the foley editor – to avoid syncing costs – only added dialogue when a character’s mouth is obscured or turned away. But as one of the films featured on “MST3K,” it stands as one of those “so bad it’s kinda good” movies, but only for that reason. And Tor Johnson ain’t no DeNiro, let me tell you – in fact in Tim Burton’s movie “Ed Wood,” he was portrayed by George “The Animal” Steele of WWF fame. So clearly a wide range of talent and an emotional palette are not necessary to interpret this man as a character. You just have to be hairy and grunt a lot.

What’s Bad: What isn’t? The wooden acting, the special effects and the unsynced dialogue? Surely you can’t be serious.

Why We Like It: Pretty much like I said – so bad you should probably see it at least once. Kind of like slowing down to look at a car wreck or some other tragedy – you take it in, shake your head and hope you never encounter something so awful again.

Memorable stuff: Oh trust me, you won’t forget a single fucking frame of this suckfest. And if you can’t find it to rent anywhere, have no fear – it’s within the Public Domain and available for viewing or download at the Internet Archive (www.internetarchive.org).