(Not So) Random Film of the Week: GOG

gogWhile the three films in Ivan Tors Productions’ “Office of Scientific Investigation” (OSI) trilogy haven’t gotten the name recognition or massive fan bases of certain other more well-known franchises, each stands out as a fine example of Tors’ commitment to bringing a more scientific and human touch to the genre. While not going for camp or cheap thrills, the films make for a look into Tors’ heavy interest in pure science fiction with independent films he got made on his own terms.

Beginning with 1953’s The Magnetic Monster, 1954’s Riders to the Stars, and GOG, also released in 1954, the three films trade in the era’s familiar “B” movie antics for drier, more “realistic” hard science mixed with speculative elements. While some action scenes take place in all three films, outside these sequences things are done with a more sedate, almost documentary-like presentation of their assorted plots.

Additionally, all three films can be watched and enjoyed fully in any order, as they tell stories that are connected by a few threads, but don’t contain the same characters. Chief among these threads is men (and women) of science trying to make advances in the field for the future with dramatic (and sometimes unfortunate) results. Or: you can’t make a science-flavored omelette without breaking a few scientist-shaped eggs…
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Kvetch-22: You Win Some, You Lose Some

Good GOG PlusHere’s some news fresh from the “Wouldn’t You Know It?” desk:

Hooray! I won something awesome recently – a blu-ray copy of the Ivan Tors produced, Herbert L. Strock directed sci-fi film GOG (1954), restored into its 3D state and in HD for the first time on disc. Many thanks go to Kino Lorber, Classic Movie Hub and Aurora’s Gin Joint (all fine places to sit for a spell and learn about plenty of classic films) for picking my hastily scribbled entry. I also got two more Arrow Video blu-rays in the post today to review right after GOG showed up via Fed Ex: Dillinger and The Zero Boys. Excellent!

However (and this is hi-larious)… Continue reading

Mezco’s New Living Dead Doll Has Universal Appeal

Mezco creature instagram_1While Mezco Toyz has previously sold a cool 9-inch Creature From the Black Lagoon collectible figure in its Universal Monsters line, this upcoming Living Dead Doll version of the Creature blows that one out of the water. I’m betting a new penny this new doll sells out faster than the Universal Monsters one just because it’s cute and creepy perfection. Just look at it:

Mezco Creature from the Black Lagoon LDD

 

Featuring an all new body and face sculpt, this iconic scaled terror from the deep stands a full 10” tall and captures the intricate detail of the pre-historic gill-man; from his mysterious yellow eyes, to his claw tipped webbed hands. With nine points of articulation he is the most articulated Living Dead Doll ever, he’ll be able to take out any scientist who dares to come between him and his true love. He comes packaged in a full color, collector friendly window box.

This upcoming Creature From the Black Lagoon Living Dead Doll will cost $32 and ship out in July. Pre-ordering is highly recommended, as I can see LDD fans worldwide making room in a cabinet or on a shelf just for this new arrival. Yeah, that Gill-man will still slay you, man. But he’ll kill you with cuteness first before getting you with those fishy claws of his. “Dawwwww!” and “Gyaaaaaaah!” at the same time? I can do that.

Hikari Friday: Universal Monsters Want To Stalk Your Shelves!

Continuing the Hikari Friday madness, Funko has two really sweet Universal Monster vinyl figures up for grabs this week. Check out the Original Creature Hikari Sofubi Figure:

Original Creature Hikari Sofubi Figure #1 of a mere 500 pieces can be YOURS if you’re lucky! The other vinyl up for grabs is this ToyZoo.com Exclusive Grey Skull Frankenstein Hikari Sofubi Figure, #1 of only 750 you’ll be attempting to claim for your own:

ToyZoo.com Exclusive Grey Skull Hikari Sofubi Figure As usual, all you need to to is hit up one of Funko’s social media sites:

http://www.facebook.com/OriginalFunko
http://www.twitter.com/OriginalFunko
Instagram @OriginalFunko

Once you’re there, enter as required and if you’re lucky you’ll be getting a little surprise in your inbox within the next week or so. If you don’t win, you can grab that Creature at your favorite Funko emporium and the Frankenstein exclusively at Toyzoo.com. As usual, good luck in your efforts and if you win, remember to remember me when you’re sending out those holiday greeting cards!

Hikari Friday Time! Homeless Skeletor And Universal Monsters Want To Get Boxed Up And Sent Your Way!

Hikari logo

The Hikari madness continues! Funko is giving away THREE figures this week (one per winner) and this time it’s a terribly collectible trio up for grabs. Check out the Grey Skull Skeletor Hikari Sofubi Figure(#1 of 1000!):

Grey Skull Skeletor Hikari Sofubi Figure

and these two super exclusive Gemini Collectibles figures, Gemini Collectibles Exclusive Gold Secret Base Creature Premium Hikari Sofubi Figure (#1 of 500!):

Gemini Collectibles Exclusive Gold Secret Base Creature Premium Hikari Sofubi Figure

And his good buddy, Gemini Collectibles Mythos Frankenstein Hikari Sofubi Figure3 (#1 of 750!):

Gemini Collectibles Mythos Frankenstein Hikari Sofubi Figure
 
As usual, entering is SIMPLE. Just zoom that mouse hand or whatever you use to surf over to one of Funko’s social-type sites:

http://www.facebook.com/OriginalFunko
http://www.twitter.com/OriginalFunko
Instagram @OriginalFunko

Follow the rules and hold your breath for as long as you can (well, that’s NOT a rule, but if you DO follow it, you may end up unexpectedly giving up your chance to win a prize to someone who won’t attend your funeral) and you just may win BIG! If you lose BIG, well… it’s not necessarily a bad thing, as you can score (as in BUY) Skeletor in October at your nearest Funko retailer and hit up Gemini Collectibles (use that link above) for the other two figures. As always, Good Luck!

Random Film of the Week(end): It Should Happen To You!

(Thanks, KaninFamily!) 

It Should Happen To You_MPThe lovely Judy Holliday soars as a sort of ditzy but shrewd former girdle model who ends up becoming an instant celebrity thanks to a few simple billboards with her name on them George Cukor’s 1954 gem that shows off some fantastic looks at the New York City of the era. This film is also famous for being the movie debut of Jack Lemmon and here, he’s perfectly cast as Pete Sheppard, a documentary maker who shoots Holliday’s Gladys Glover in Central Park and of course, falls in love with her after some amusing assorted ups and down.

There are plenty of laughs in this classic to spare, many at Gladys’ expense as her sudden celebrity goes other head and she thinks her new found fame means all that attention is positive. While some elements are dated, the film does a very good job at foreshadowing today’s fame-crazy celebrities who do a heck of a lot more than simply toss their names up on a billboard to get attention…

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Twisty Tuesday Takes Its Toll… Tomorrow’s Time to Tackle Trouble!

(Thanks, SpaceComics!) 

Feh. Between the rain, humidity and the library being shut today (well,at least they’re supposedly updating their “technology” so perhaps the connection speed will be a bit less laggy than it’s been these last few months?), it’s be a hell of a slog trying to work. Well, I did get a formerly busted computer up and running and some stuff shipped out that needed to get on its merry way before tinkering around with a new game for a bit and starting up a small bit of artwork before rolling in here to post. Anyway, like the fold-able female in this clip, I need to be more flexible about certain things so I can just get more stuff DONE that I’d like to do. I got a nice kick in the pants thanks to Henry Miller’s 11 tips on writing (and NO, I’m not going to write like him, silly – I like his takes on inspiration and getting stuff done) and between that and some other kicks to the noggin and other parts (ouch!), I think I’m a bit more energized for the remainder of the week…

Random Film of the Week (Double Feature Edition): THEM! & Tarantula

(thanks, Tobar!) 

With Earth Defense Force 2017 Portable rolling out on the PlayStation Vita on Tuesday, I figured I’d write up a short column about two of the many “They don’t make ’em like they used to!” sci-fi films that most assuredly influenced Japanese developer Sandlot when they created their cult favorite game series that got its start as a pair of budget PlayStation 2 games (The Simple 2000 Vol. 31: The Chikyuu Boueigun and The Simple 2000 Vol. 81: The Chikyuu Boueigun 2) and a more visually polished Xbox 360 sequel which has been nicely expanded and enhanced for Sony’s portable system. Both flicks are “B” movie classics worth watching if you’ve never seen either previously, with the former film being surprisingly tense and well-acted considering the subject matter and the latter film using some pretty well done matte work to convincing effect in a few scenes.

Yeah, yeah, there’s no fancy CGI here and some implausible moments in both flicks can be eyeball-rolling if you start applying any rules of reality to what you’re viewing. Nevertheless, if you’re in the right mood, you’ll be hooked into both films from the memorable beginnings of each one and stick around to their bitter endings…

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