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The Evil/Twice Dead (Double Feature)


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#1 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 01 2010 - 06:31 AM

Just got word from DVD Pacific that my order of this double feature just shipped out! Anybody else got there's coming? I specifically ordered this one for THE EVIL.


http://static.hometh...um.com/imgrepo/http://static.hometh...um.com/imgrepo/



#2 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 06 2010 - 08:33 AM

Just got mine today, might be a week, or two, before I get to it. Can't get off my animation kick.



#3 of 19 OFFLINE   Tony J Case

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Posted October 06 2010 - 08:42 AM

Really? I'll have to keep an eye out for the set when I stop by Scarecrow later today. I cant pass on these awesome Roger Corman flicks!



#4 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 06 2010 - 09:30 AM

What is this Scarecrow you keep mentioning? Is that the name of the video store? It sounds ominous every time you bring it up.


The next two I got coming is NOT OF THIS EARTH and THE TERROR WITHIN/DEAD SPACE Double feature November 2nd.



#5 of 19 OFFLINE   Tony J Case

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Posted October 06 2010 - 11:10 AM

Scarecrow is quite possibly the coolest video store around - if it was ever released on DVD, Laserdisc or VHS, they probably have it. Those old Shick Sunn "In Seach Of" type films from the 70's that nobody EVER remembers? They have 'em. Obscure european pre-fall of communisim VHS releases? They'd have 'em. Way out of print criterion? They'll have 'em.

If the Alamo Draft House was a video store, they'd be Scarecrow video.

And since I like to support the little mom-n-pop stores (and I get a free rental for buying a DVD), I try and give 'em all my business when I can.



#6 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 06 2010 - 11:35 AM

Wow, sounds like a cool place. Too bad they weren't into the mail order business. I kept thinking every time you brought up the name, I thought, why is Tony getting his movies from a DC comic book villian? More importantly, are they even "movies" at all? Has Tony gone over to the dark side? Hmmm, I thought, I must look into this . . .   Posted Image


Anyhow, I've decided to set a firm viewing date for THE EVIL. This Saturday, I believe. Then I can get it out of the way, report back to HTF about it, then segue back into my animation. I hate this, it's the Halloween month, and I have yet to watch any of my horror movies.


I should, however, be back to "normal" next week. Assuming this new upcoming AVENGERS cartoon doesn't demand too much attention. I never miss putting on HALLOWEEN, HALLLOWEN II and HALLOWEEN III: SEASON OF THE WITCH, not to mention NIGHT OF THE DEMONS.


I'm rather curious as to how bad the remake of NIGHT OF THE DEMONS is. I'm hoping it hits Pay-Per-View soon, so I can check it out.



#7 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 07 2010 - 11:15 AM

I put the DVD on today, just to check out the menu setup and the extras. I like how Shout has set it up, with the faux movie theater look, and all. The trailer section has, not only THE EVIL and TWICE DEAD, but you can watch KINGDOM OF THE SPIDERS, NOT OF THIS EARTH ('88), and THE TERROR WITHIN theatrical trailers. Why do I feel I'm leaving one out? Hmmm, will have to double check it. Anyhow, I originally wasn't getting the THE TERROR WITHIN/DEAD SPACE double feature for THE TERROR WITHIN, but after seeing it's trailer, I think, I'm gonna watch that one, too.


I also noticed the double features won't be reversible. Even though this one had overseas poster art of THE EVIL on the reverse side, TWICE DEAD did not, just a couple of shots of the actors from the flick. And, it didn't come with a booklet. None of which is a serious buzzkill, by any means, just thought I'd mention these differences in case anyone was wondering if the double features were going to follow the same set up as the single features when it came to these kind of extras.



#8 of 19 OFFLINE   cineMANIAC

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Posted October 08 2010 - 12:46 AM

Man, trailers do a great job of selling movies - I wasn't planning on buying Not of This Earth or Terror Within but after watching those trailers I'm sold! I know Traci Lords did some porn but the only other thing I remember her from is that episode in Married...With Children where Al dreams he's a private eye. Regarding Terror Within, I totally forgot I had seen the movie and remembered liking it, it had sort of an Alien-type vibe with a creature running amok in some underground lab. Xtro II had a similar plot but that film was total crap. I understand Dead Space is a pseudo-remake of Forbidden World? Definitely interested in it. I enjoyed many of those late 80's-early 90's DTV sci-fi/post-apocalyptic flicks so count me in for this disc. I'm waiting for the perfect night (cold and windy) to check out The Evil - it's one of those movies that need to be viewed at the appropriate frame of mind.


 

RIP Roberto Gomez Bolanos. 


#9 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 08 2010 - 03:16 AM

From what I know, NOT OF THIS EARTH is supposed to be the first mainstream film Traci Lords ever made. I'm with ya on having the perfect time to view certain movies. THE BOOGENS -- when I first saw that flick, I was in grade school and it was a cold, winter night. I put that flick on every winter, and I wait until the right conditions are upon me: night, preferably with a moon out, and cold. Won't have it any other way. Gonna be checking THE EVIL out this Saturday regardless. As we get closer to Halloween, I'll start putting on HALLOWEEN 1 through 3.


I always watch my flicks at night, in my bedroom, lights turned off, and my headphones on. Can't listen to my flicks any other way from now on. Best headphones I ever got are Pioneer's SE-DIR800C model. Expensive as hell when I bought 'em. Don't know if they're still in production.


Yeah, I wasn't planning on having anything to do with THE TERROR WITHIN, until that trailer assualted my senses. Now, it's a must see. Yes, you can see the blatant ALIEN rip-off concepts in that one. Doesn't matter. That trailer was way cool. Gonna check it out again, later today.



#10 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 09 2010 - 02:08 PM

Just got done watching THE EVIL, but I'm gonna refrain from talking about it because I wanna write up a proper review of it, 'cause I have lots to say, most of it all good. I will, however, say it, at this moment, that it was a big time winner!


Expect my two cents tomorrow some time.



#11 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 10 2010 - 11:11 AM

Apparantly, I double posted   by mistake. The improved looking review is now in a new post below.



#12 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 11 2010 - 03:36 AM

Before I get into the movie I need to talk about the DVD itself first, specifically, the menu concept. After you put the DVD in and it goes through all the screens it has to, it delivers you in front of movie theater that's all decked out with the Bijou logo and the two movies you’re about to watch. You can also hear sounds of cars driving by and honking, and a police car going on its merry way to whatever urban atrocity has been committed by us poor, primitive humans.

 

In the foreground, there’s a movie ticket highlighted. Once you click it, you are delivered next to another nice touch: the lobby of a movie theater. And the sounds you can here are another nicely added detail – people mumbling and talking amongst themselves to simulate that crowd experience.

 

You now have three choices set before you: the double doors to the theater, the concession stand’s menu, or a trip to the bathroom. A trip to the concession stand will get you a TWICE DEAD and THE EVIL scene selections; a trip to the bathrooms will give you access to all the extras (i.e. trailers, TV spots, an interview with Jill Whitlow, and the commentaries); and a trip through the theater doors will give you the movie, and three more choices. You can either watch each movie separately, or watch them as part of The Roger Corman Experience. The latter will play both movies back to back, with two trailers before the main feature, then an “intermission,” which gives you two more trailers before the start of the second movie. I never watched the second flick, so, I don’t know if there was anything to see after that movie ended. I bought this DVD specifically for THE EVIL.

 

For any of those movie collectors who have enough money to turn their living room, or any room of their house, into a duplication of a movie theater, this Roger Corman Experience feature will give you guys the closest thing there is to seeing these flicks in an actual theater ala the Grindhouse experience. Minus the crime, shady characters, and lack of upkeep I understand those kinds of places, in that period of our history, were wallowing in.

 

I’ve looked over the credits on the insert, and on the back of the DVD cover, but I can find no one who might be specifically responsible for this menu design. Would this happen to be the brainchild of Cliff MacMillan, the Shout! Factory producer who’s in charge of heralding all these Roger Corman produced gems into the grubby hands of us fans? If it is, then, thanks, Cliff. Big time. If it’s not, then could you get this 'thank you' to the person responsible?

 

I grew up in a small town, so I have no experience with what it might have felt like to be in the Grindhouse state of mind. I may have come close, though, for there was, and still is, an old time theater right down there on main street. Built way back in the 30s, I think, and I have only seen two flicks in it in my lifetime -- Star Wars and Raiders Of The Lost Ark.

 

When two of my grade school friends and I saw Raiders one of them told me of the weird people who worked there and how they liked to take their cloths off and run around naked when no one was around. Never knew if that was true, or not. Thank God, I never had to find out. But the dude who took our money during those two movie going occasions had that serial killer-vibe going for him.

 

Okay, now on to the flick itself.

 

Let me preface this by saying I have certain criteria that need to be in place for me to enjoy a movie about ghosts. Foremost, if the portrayal of the ghost, or evil force, in question, ends up being an actor, or actress, then the flick is already a failure, and I stop watching immediately. There are only three superb movies about haunted houses in existence, and they are THE UNINVITED (1944), THE HAUNTING (1963), and LEGEND OF HELL HOUSE (1973). And, what they all have in common is that the there isn’t one actor that shows up in them that's supposed to be the ghost, or a ghost. What makes them successful is that the paranormal phenomenon is the only aspect portrayed, and it’s portrayed rather accurately.

 

These kinds of movies about haunted houses work because the so-called, “evil forces” are ephemeral. They don’t have a face you can look at, or body you can punch and kick, or a mind you can reason with.

 

THE EVIL, for the most part, falls into this category pretty damn well, with two exceptions, which, in one case, is still done in a creepy fashion even though there is obviously an actor portraying the ghost of Vargas, (not sure about the name), the former owner of the mansion. In the second case, it’s a complete failure, but that failure isn’t given enough screen time to null and void the extremely creepy paranormal events that have come before.

 

Thank God, too.

 

I’ll get more into this perceived failure in a minute.

 

The movie is a quick and effective hour and twenty-eight minutes of a group of people stuck inside a mansion where our lead actor, Richard Crenna, has inadvertently freed and evil force from down in the basement by screwing around with a vault built into the ground. From there on it’s a question of who will get picked on, and offed, by the Evil, and who will live to see their next birthday.

 

Right from the start I noticed touches that reminded of other horror movies that scarred my youth. The opening scene where the groundskeeper unlocks the doors and steps in reminded me of a scene from LEGEND OF HELL HOUSE, when the investigators first enter the house. The scene looked almost the same with the house’s pillar in the foreground, and everything.

 

Every time the Evil strikes there is terrible cackling that sounded like the kind of cackling I had heard in EQUINOX, and there's an even more disturbing sound that reminded of the guttural noises the giant spider made in EARTH VS. THE SPIDER, only here it was amped up and twisted in such a way that it made me squirm a bit every time I heard it.

 

I think I had seen this movie once, either on TV, or after my family had bought HBO and SPOTLGHT (now SHOWTIME) when they were first coming out. There is one scene I had seen and had totally forgotten about until I saw it last night, and when it happened, I got the willies, which is described in the Spoiler Quote below.

 

It’s where Andrew Prine’s girlfriend is attacked and pulled into the dark at the top of the stairs by an invisible force. He pursues and is subsequently thrown back down. All the while there are those creepy EARTH VS THE SPIDER sounds going on.
 

The movie is devoid of gore, except for one scene that had me wincing in shared pain as Andrew Prine is forced by the Evil to take that circular saw he’s using to try and dismantle the front door and use it on his hand. Jesus Christ, that must have killed!

 

Okay, now time to discuss the flicks one major flaw, again hidden in Spoiler Quotes below . . .
  


The appearance of Old Scratch himself after Crenna and his wife end up having to go down into the bowels of that underground vault. The personification of The Evil is what almost kills the movie. But as I said, Old Scratch isn’t given enough time to deflate all the expertly staged paranormal insanity I had just sat through, no,more like survived. I have yet to listen to the commentary and am seriously hoping this aspect of the flick is adequately dissected. As in, ‘What the fuck were you filmmakers thinking?! You almost destroyed an awesome ghost story!’
 

The movie’s transfer isn’t as visually impeccable as some of the other Corman movies. The darks are a bit murky and the flesh tones in some of the scenes are a bit too orangey, and the audio could have used a little punching up. Still, its awesome to get this flick anamorphic, which pretty much makes up for those aforementioned deficiencies.

 

That’s pretty much it, guys. Has anyone else gotten a chance to see this flick yet?  Wait, I forgot to someone, or should I say give props to David Levine. He's responsible for the Package Design on all the Corman covers.



#13 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 15 2010 - 05:54 AM

Pay close attention to the scene where the black chick is getting telekinetically molested, as she gets thrown about, you can see the wires attached to her body.



#14 of 19 OFFLINE   ahollis

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Posted October 15 2010 - 06:37 AM



Originally Posted by SWFF 

Pay close attention to the scene where the black chick is getting telekinetically molested, as she gets thrown about, you can see the wires attached to her body.


Thanks you just ruined it for me. Posted Image


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#15 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 15 2010 - 07:10 AM

I never noticed them on my initial viewing, then as I listened to the commentary, the director was talking how they had to shoot certain scenes a few times because he could see the wires, well, I just happened to be standing close to the TV when this scene played and, I'll be damned, if they didn't stand out this time. I blame that on the clarity of HD TV, something they never had to take into consideration when they were making this movie, and I'm sure they probably don't stand out all that much on a tube TV.


Technology, you gotta love it. Posted Image



#16 of 19 OFFLINE   Tony J Case

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Posted October 16 2010 - 05:33 AM

I've run into that problem with a couple of older flicks. Effect shots that would be just fine on TV crumble when you get them in sexy digital. But then, I'm forgiving of these flaws so wires (or whatever) dont really bug me.



#17 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 16 2010 - 07:19 AM

No, it's not a deal breaker with me, either. Not by any means. I love watching Godzilla movies and I can always see the wires on them, so, this didn't bother me in the least. Listened to the commentary a few days ago, and it was nice to hear that the director had nothing to do with that scene at the end where the Evil is finally personified. He said it was a decision from the highe- ups that forced him to shoot it. Their reasoning was that they thought the audience would feel cheated if we didn't get to see who, or what, was causing all this horror.


For me, that scene that didn't make the impact that, I guess, it was supposed to, because I can still watch the flick and enjoy it. I can see places. though, where you could completely edit it out and the rest of the movie wouldn't suffer in the least bit.



#18 of 19 OFFLINE   cliff mac

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Posted October 17 2010 - 05:02 AM

Yes, that menu design was something i had done when i was at BCI for a series called WELCOME TO THE GRINDHOUSE and then EXPLOITATION CINEMA. Code Red used it for awhile after BCI went under... and then I brought back the design for the Corman double features.

Originally Posted by SWFF 

Before I get into the movie I need to talk about the DVD itself first, specifically, the menu concept. After you put the DVD in and it goes through all the screens it has to, it delivers you in front of movie theater that's all decked out with the Bijou logo and the two movies you’re about to watch. You can also hear sounds of cars driving by and honking, and a police car going on its merry way to whatever urban atrocity has been committed by us poor, primitive humans.

 

In the foreground, there’s a movie ticket highlighted. Once you click it, you are delivered next to another nice touch: the lobby of a movie theater. And the sounds you can here are another nicely added detail – people mumbling and talking amongst themselves to simulate that crowd experience.

 

You now have three choices set before you: the double doors to the theater, the concession stand’s menu, or a trip to the bathroom. A trip to the concession stand will get you a TWICE DEAD and THE EVIL scene selections; a trip to the bathrooms will give you access to all the extras (i.e. trailers, TV spots, an interview with Jill Whitlow, and the commentaries); and a trip through the theater doors will give you the movie, and three more choices. You can either watch each movie separately, or watch them as part of The Roger Corman Experience. The latter will play both movies back to back, with two trailers before the main feature, then an “intermission,” which gives you two more trailers before the start of the second movie. I never watched the second flick, so, I don’t know if there was anything to see after that movie ended. I bought this DVD specifically for THE EVIL.

 

For any of those movie collectors who have enough money to turn their living room, or any room of their house, into a duplication of a movie theater, this Roger Corman Experience feature will give you guys the closest thing there is to seeing these flicks in an actual theater ala the Grindhouse experience. Minus the crime, shady characters, and lack of upkeep I understand those kinds of places, in that period of our history, were wallowing in.

 

I’ve looked over the credits on the insert, and on the back of the DVD cover, but I can find no one who might be specifically responsible for this menu design. Would this happen to be the brainchild of Cliff MacMillan, the Shout! Factory producer who’s in charge of heralding all these Roger Corman produced gems into the grubby hands of us fans? If it is, then, thanks, Cliff. Big time. If it’s not, then could you get this 'thank you' to the person responsible?

 

I grew up in a small town, so I have no experience with what it might have felt like to be in the Grindhouse state of mind. I may have come close, though, for there was, and still is, an old time theater right down there on main street. Built way back in the 30s, I think, and I have only seen two flicks in it in my lifetime -- Star Wars and Raiders Of The Lost Ark.

 

When two of my grade school friends and I saw Raiders one of them told me of the weird people who worked there and how they liked to take their cloths off and run around naked when no one was around. Never knew if that was true, or not. Thank God, I never had to find out. But the dude who took our money during those two movie going occasions had that serial killer-vibe going for him.

 

Okay, now on to the flick itself.

 

Let me preface this by saying I have certain criteria that need to be in place for me to enjoy a movie about ghosts. Foremost, if the portrayal of the ghost, or evil force, in question, ends up being an actor, or actress, then the flick is already a failure, and I stop watching immediately. There are only three superb movies about haunted houses in existence, and they are THE UNINVITED (1944), THE HAUNTING (1963), and LEGEND OF HELL HOUSE (1973). And, what they all have in common is that the there isn’t one actor that shows up in them that's supposed to be the ghost, or a ghost. What makes them successful is that the paranormal phenomenon is the only aspect portrayed, and it’s portrayed rather accurately.

 

These kinds of movies about haunted houses work because the so-called, “evil forces” are ephemeral. They don’t have a face you can look at, or body you can punch and kick, or a mind you can reason with.

 

THE EVIL, for the most part, falls into this category pretty damn well, with two exceptions, which, in one case, is still done in a creepy fashion even though there is obviously an actor portraying the ghost of Vargas, (not sure about the name), the former owner of the mansion. In the second case, it’s a complete failure, but that failure isn’t given enough screen time to null and void the extremely creepy paranormal events that have come before.

 

Thank God, too.

 

I’ll get more into this perceived failure in a minute.

 

The movie is a quick and effective hour and twenty-eight minutes of a group of people stuck inside a mansion where our lead actor, Richard Crenna, has inadvertently freed and evil force from down in the basement by screwing around with a vault built into the ground. From there on it’s a question of who will get picked on, and offed, by the Evil, and who will live to see their next birthday.

 

Right from the start I noticed touches that reminded of other horror movies that scarred my youth. The opening scene where the groundskeeper unlocks the doors and steps in reminded me of a scene from LEGEND OF HELL HOUSE, when the investigators first enter the house. The scene looked almost the same with the house’s pillar in the foreground, and everything.

 

Every time the Evil strikes there is terrible cackling that sounded like the kind of cackling I had heard in EQUINOX, and there's an even more disturbing sound that reminded of the guttural noises the giant spider made in EARTH VS. THE SPIDER, only here it was amped up and twisted in such a way that it made me squirm a bit every time I heard it.

 

I think I had seen this movie once, either on TV, or after my family had bought HBO and SPOTLGHT (now SHOWTIME) when they were first coming out. There is one scene I had seen and had totally forgotten about until I saw it last night, and when it happened, I got the willies, which is described in the Spoiler Quote below.

 

It’s where Andrew Prine’s girlfriend is attacked and pulled into the dark at the top of the stairs by an invisible force. He pursues and is subsequently thrown back down. All the while there are those creepy EARTH VS THE SPIDER sounds going on.
 

The movie is devoid of gore, except for one scene that had me wincing in shared pain as Andrew Prine is forced by the Evil to take that circular saw he’s using to try and dismantle the front door and use it on his hand. Jesus Christ, that must have killed!

 

Okay, now time to discuss the flicks one major flaw, again hidden in Spoiler Quotes below . . .
  


The appearance of Old Scratch himself after Crenna and his wife end up having to go down into the bowels of that underground vault. The personification of The Evil is what almost kills the movie. But as I said, Old Scratch isn’t given enough time to deflate all the expertly staged paranormal insanity I had just sat through, no,more like survived. I have yet to listen to the commentary and am seriously hoping this aspect of the flick is adequately dissected. As in, ‘What the fuck were you filmmakers thinking?! You almost destroyed an awesome ghost story!’
 

The movie’s transfer isn’t as visually impeccable as some of the other Corman movies. The darks are a bit murky and the flesh tones in some of the scenes are a bit too orangey, and the audio could have used a little punching up. Still, its awesome to get this flick anamorphic, which pretty much makes up for those aforementioned deficiencies.

 

That’s pretty much it, guys. Has anyone else gotten a chance to see this flick yet?  Wait, I forgot to someone, or should I say give props to David Levine. He's responsible for the Package Design on all the Corman covers.




";s:7:"insider

#19 of 19 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted October 21 2010 - 07:00 AM

Well, bravo, Cliff! Nice job!