It’s now over three months still I posted something in this blog due to the general lack of motivation and time (more of the former than the latter), so there’s quite a lot to write about the stuff I got to watch/play/experience.
In preparation for this weekend’s movie night (Saturday ’til Monday; so more like a marathon) I checked out four movies which can and should be considered trash.
Mighty Peking Man
(Hong Kong 1978, original title: Xing xing wang; German title: Der Koloss von Konga, director: Meng Hua Ho)
I already watched it in another movie night and had to order it the next day (for 0,01 Euros, with 3 Euros shipping costs). It’s unbelievable how the Shaw Brothers, who usually do Martial Arts movies, were involved in this. It’s, like “A.P.E.”, another Asian take on the King Kong formula, only this time they just threw in some half-naked lady with a tiger called Cheetah (no kidding!). Not only are the special effects and the ape done in a bad way (as was expected), the most fun you get is to watch the hero and this woman run around in the jungle and playing with the animals, all in slow motion and a very cheesy soundtrack. Then there’s another love story, some gratuitous hunting scenes, and in between you are reminded that there’s also a big ape. Its entertainment value can’t be stressed enough: “Mighty Peking Man” is so bad that you can’t help but have fun all the way through.
The Last Starfighter
(USA 1984, director: Nick Castle)
It’s hard not to fall in love with a movie that reminds you how cool those space flight simulators were in the good ol’ days, like “Wing Commander”, “X-Wing” and the like. Who hasn’t dreamed about taking part in those epic battles, fighting in an intergalactic war which is destined to fail on your side? The general background story is of course highly reminiscent of Star Wars and there’s not really a lot of info you get of the different species, but it’s enough to give you a sense of place. What makes this movie so enjoyable is that it never really takes itself too serious, starting with the recruitment of the “hero” in a Delorean-style space-car, introducing a Beta unit who takes the place of the starfighter while he’s away who isn’t really up to the task and just wants to sleep. The relationship between the starfighter (who first doesn’t really want to partake in the challenge) and his navigator is also quite funny. Even though there’s not much screen time between all the characters you can’t stop but liking them. Maybe because they are so human in any way that the typical bravado of big budget films/TV shows like Star Wars and Star Trek isn’t really necessary for having fun?
Buy the BD on
Gamera: Guardian of the Universe
(Japan 1995, original title: Gamera daikaijû kuchu kessen, director: Shusuke Kaneko)
I’ve never really seen a full-length Japanese monster movie except Roland Emmerich’s “Godzilla”, so I was more than curious to find out what this was like. First the main monster as a turtle is quite a sight to behold, especially when it takes off with its rocket-like… engine coming out of its… wherever it’s located. But except for one or two funny scenes I didn’t really get in the mood for it. Maybe it had to do with the characters I couldn’t relate to at all, or it was how the scenes were cut and seemed not to be connected at all at some points or it was just the bad special effects? I still can’t make up my mind what it exactly was that bothered me, the only thing I felt was mild boredom.
Gamera 2: Attack of the Legion
(Japan 1996, original title: Region shurai), director: Shusuke Kaneko)
Why bother to watch another so-called Kaiju-movie? Simple answer: I bought it together with the first one on a Blu-Ray disc and thought maybe there was some more interesting monster the big turtle could fight against. It started out well enough, but then again the way the story was told, how the characters reacted, never piqued my interest. Was it because they all acted so serious without any humor in it? Again I could put a finger on it, it just created the same sense of boredom like the first movie, only 5 minutes longer.