Monthly Archives: December 2010

Leslie Nielsen Trivia!

So you’ve had your night out on the town on the 31st.  Followed it up with an epic Grindhouse Triple Feature on the 1st.  Rested on the 2nd (because Sunday is, after all, a day of rest).  And now you’ve got nothing to do with the rest of your year.

Fear not!  Occasional substitute Hollywood manager and trivia jockey extraordinaire is hosting a trivia tribute to the late, the great, Leslie Nielsen!  This is a part of the rockin’ Shanrock’s Trivia brand of trivia, so you know it’s epic (incidentally, my team crushed it on the Freaks and Geeks trivia night last month).

Naked Airplane Trivia!
Monday, Jan. 3rd @ 7:00
Ella Street Social Club @ 714 SW 20th Place
Hosted by Margaret

So grab your copies of Bad Golf My Way/Bad Golf Made Easier, familiarize yourself with his “autobiography” The Naked Truth, rewatch Police Squad/The Naked Gun, Airplane!, and maybe even The Poseidon Adventure.  Things are going to get mighty silly (truth be told, Margaret told me that no studying is necessary).


Grindhouse Triple Feature

It’s time to saddle up for an epic start to your New Year!  Not too early to hinder your New Year’s Eve and late enough to grab a few beers without feeling like Death.

This Saturday January 1st at the Hollywood Theatre, The Grindhouse Film Festival presents THE NEW YEAR’S DAY GRINDHOUSE MOVIE MARATHON!  A triple feature of 35mm exploitation mayhem.  It’s the hangover helper!  $7 for one movie, or $12 for all three.  There will also be a RAFFLE for one free pass to all Grindhouse Film Festival screenings in 2011.  In order to be entered in the raffle, you must watch all three movies.

3:30 pm
MASTER OF THE FLYING GUILLOTINE (1975) The ultra-weird martial arts masterpiece!  A blind assassin armed with a vicious flying guillotine is out to kill the legendary one-armed boxer (martial arts superstar Jimmy Wang Yu).  Along the way, he interrupts a bizarre kung fu tournament and heads start to roll.  It’s up to the one-armed boxer now, with his skull shattering punch and his ability to walk on walls.  Eagle claw masters, a monkey style fight, and a Swami fighter with ten foot arms are just stepping stones to the massive showdown with the flying guillotine.  Filmed in Super Cine-Vision!

5:30 pm
GATES OF HELL (1980) A surreal Italian gutmuncher from gore-maestro Lucio Fulci!  A priest commits suicide and unwittingly opens the gateway to hell.  The rotting dead rise from their graves to feed on the living in gruesome fashion, while a psychic and a journalist attempt to stop the rancid carnage.  This is Lucio Fulci at his finest, so forget about the “plot” and prepare yourself for zombie killing, head drilling, and intestine spilling!  Powered by Fabio Frizzi’s creepy soundtrack and top notch special effects.

7:30 pm
LADY TERMINATOR (1988) A beautiful woman is possessed by an ancient mystical queen out for vengeance, turning her into an unstoppable killing machine! She takes off on a rampage across Indonesia, gunning down anyone who gets in her way, and blowing apart half of the country. She also sports a mean leather jacket… except when she’s naked… which is a lot. But for those foolish enough to try to put their hands on her, she also castrates men with an eel that lives in her vagina. Bullet-riddled disco shootouts, mind-boggling dialogue, a mullet-headed cop who drives a tank, and so much more. All in full-throttle ’80s excess!

Beer will be provided by Bridgeport Brewery.  All information and advance tickets on the website:

New Films Added to National Film Registry

Twenty-five new films have been added to the National Film Registry (as happens every year).  Notable additions are Airplane!, All the President’s Men, a George Lucas double-down: Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB and The Empire Strikes Back (directed by Irvin Kershner), Malcolm X, The Pink Panther, and, well, twenty other films.  You can see all of the new additions here and to see the (and updated) list of films in the Registry, go here.

For a fun game, see how many you’ve seen.  And, while you’re add it, add the films you haven’t seen (at least the films available) to your Netflix queue!

The Theatrical Window Shrinking?

The LA Times has an interesting article on the jockeying for position between theater chains and video on-demand providers.  My initial thought was, “who’s going to pay $30 – $60 dollars for a movie in their home?”  Then I realized that for a family of four or more, that could could be very appealing.  Granted, it’s not the same experience as the big screen, but you can pause the film, eat and drink what you like, and not deal with all of the other distractions that can crop up in a public setting.

Now I’m very much on the side of the theater managers since I prefer to watch films in the theater (and much prefer that it be, you know, actual film).  But many people aren’t like me and I get the appeal.  In my mind, though, theaters should be doing more to make the experience more appealing.  The biggest wild card when going to the movies is if you’re going to have a talker or a texter or any other possible annoyance in attendance.  Theaters need to come down harder on people that do that.  Install signal blockers to prevent people from using their phone to communicate (I don’t know if you can stop games from being played).

I understand why the concession prices are so high, but the studios really have theater managers between a rock and a hard place, so I don’t know if there’s an easy remedy to that.  But if theaters are really interested in bringing customers back, they need to figure out a way to make the theater a place where people want to be (and 3-D is not the answer, as evidenced by Avatar being the most illegally downloaded film of the year).

And it must be serendipity that this article on how to bring people back to the theaters should appear on my radar the same day as the LA Times article.  Indie producer Cottie Chubb believes that theater-going experience can be saved by a deal between smaller studios and major theatrical chains in which the studio gets a small return on the theatrical release (which allows the chains to lower prices of both tickets and concessions) in return for being able to distribute the film in all possible markets simultaneously.  Essentially, the theatrical window would be eliminated (which is what the studios are fighting).

It sounds like a rough proposition and, I must admit, I have serious doubts as to whether it would work.  Unless it is a big spectacle movie (like Avatar), I’m certain most people are content to watch a film with a small group of friends at home.  If they don’t even have to leave the house (like with VOD or Netflix), why bother?

It’s obvious that things are changing and the thought of theatrical screenings becoming a thing of the past is scary (the young adult statistic is alarming).  You’d be hard-pressed to find a director who didn’t want his or her films to be shown on a big screen to a large crowd.  There’s no easy solution.  What do you think?  Good idea?  Worries about nothing?


Trailer Monday

This week’s crop of new releases, which includes one of the more bizarre and interesting Christmas movies you’ll ever see.  Click here for show times.

Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale

Change of Plans

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from the Hollywood Theatre!  Enjoy these clips sometime between the gift giving/getting and the gorging on food.

An Early Gift

As I picked The Muppet Christmas Carol as my holiday movie, it should be of no surprise that I’m directing you all to the below video.  First: Muppets.  Second: could there be a better trio than Swedish Chef, Beaker, and Animal?  Third: it’s just awesome.  Enjoy!