Old Fashioned – Meet the Christian 50 Shades of Grey movie!

Old Fashioned movie
As 50 Shades of Grey prepares to make the Valentine’s Day box office submit to its commands, a challenger has appeared. Old Fashioned is exactly the same movie, except exactly the opposite. Instead of two characters moaning and groaning together after having just met, the two leads engage in a chaste courtship ritual:

A former frat boy and a free-spirited woman together attempt the impossible: an “old-fashioned” courtship in contemporary America. Valentine’ s Day 2015.

I guess the moaning and groaning was just people finding out about this film! Courtships are all the rage thanks to those reality shows featuring unnaturally large religious families undergoing courtships. Old Fashioned is written and directed and starring Rik Swartzwelder.

Swartzwelder describes the film as “not a religious film, per se” but “a film with faith,”

Which is just a weird way to say it’s a religious film, because it is, and Swartzwelder even has a novelization and companion literature prepared to be sold in religious bookstores. But it’s “not a religious film, per se”. Right. Hey, more power to you for getting a film made and all that, but at least be honest, because bearing false witness is just as much a commandment breaking sin as coveting your neighbor’s wife in a non-courtship manner.

Old Fashioned also stars Elizabeth Ann Roberts, LeJon Woods, Tyler Hollinger, Nini Hadjis, Maryann Nagel, Lindsay Heath, Joseph Bonamico, Dorothy Silver, Ange’le Perez, and Anne Marie Nestor.

What do you think, is this a harbringer of a wave of Christian versions of Hollywood films that will be released the same weekend? Will Christian films become their own mockbusters, taking pages from The Asylum? And when will we get word of Asylum’s version of 50 Shades of Grey? Whatever happens, February is the date to mark your calenders to keep up with Old Fashioned, unless it’s preview screening tour hits your town.

Official Site
Official Facebook
via Time

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Posted by Tars Tarkas - July 31, 2014 at 11:58 pm

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Dragonriders of Pern gets their best chance yet of actually being movies!

Dragonriders of Pern
Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern has been optioned (again!) for the silver screen, this time by Warner Brothers, who are in a desperate search for a new megafranchise to make money off of in the wake of Harry Potter being long gone (and the new Potter-less Rowling films a gamble), and with The Hobbit wrapping up with no Similarion in sight. Thus, options are getting thrown about like wild pitches at a drunken softball game! Warners optioned all 22 books, which (as those of us who read the books because we were dorks know) covers 2500 years of time on planet Pern, meaning they can potentially restart the franchise every three movies or so with whole new casts! Brilliant!

Some Dragonriders of Pern info for the few of you who don’t know and are too lazy to highlight the title and rightclick for the Google search: Dragonriders of Pern takes place on the planet Pern, which is occasionally threatened by a rogue planet called the Red Star, whose irregular orbit causes it to drag destructive creatures known as Thread with it that fall on Pern and devour all organic matter it touches until they die. The Thread threatens all living creatures with destructing, but luckily they are easily destroyed by fire. Pern also has natural tiny flying lizards that breath flames (called dragonets) and bang, zoom, genetic manipulation later, suddenly we got huge dragons that people ride and burn the Thread up with.

Of course, the dragons have psychic bonds, there are different colors of dragons, occasionally the Thread doesn’t fall when it’s supposed to and people begin resenting the dragonriders, and other planet intrigue happens. The series has a lot of trilogies and other work that could be set all over Pern history.

Thanks to movies and big budgets and Game of Thrones, this is probably the best time for Dragonriders of Pern to get optioned, and the best time for it to get turned into an actual film. Here’s hoping for some awesome dragonriding and fighting and cool things being cool. Because that would be cool! If you’ve paid attention over the years, you’ve heard this franchise get optioned numerous times. But I have a feeling about this option…

Never fear, Warners is still hedging their bets on old school franchises, including forming a Harry Potter Global Franchise Development team that’s based in both London and Burbank. It’s called HPGFD, because, of course it is! It’s all about studios and brands leveraging every dollar out of your bank account and into theirs!

Pern covers gallery by Michael Whelan
via Deadline

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Posted by Tars Tarkas - July 30, 2014 at 1:22 pm

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DTV Sequel Madness! – Jarhead, Sniper, Company of Heroes, Tremors

Jarhead 2 banner
Open your faceholes to prepare for the arrival of a whole batch of direct to video sequels that will fill all your senses with wonderment on how all this DTV stuff is getting greenlighted in 2014, long after video store closures have eliminated one of the paths for these films to get profitable. But greenlit they are, so good for them, and let’s just go over the latest group of films.

Not only is there a fifth Sniper film coming out, but also a second Jarhead film, a second Company of Heroes movie, and even a Tremors reboot! All from the same director, Don Michael Paul! You might remember Don Michael Paul as the director of Who’s Your Caddy? or Taken: The Search for Sophie Parker, and now he’s doing a whole host of films!

Jarhead 2: Field Of Firecomes out August 19th on DVD. Check the trailer here.

Battle-scarred and disillusioned by the war, Corporal Chris Merriman is put in charge of a unit whose next mission is to resupply a remote outpost on the edge of Taliban-controlled territory. While driving through the hostile Helmand province, a Navy SEAL flags down their convoy and enlists the unit on an operation of international importance: they must help an Afghan woman famous for her defiance of the Taliban escape the country. Without tanks or air support, Merriman and his team will need all the courage and firepower they can muster to fight their way across the war-torn country and shepherd the woman to safety.

Sniper: Legacy has Tom Berenger and Dennis Haysbert both appear. Berenger starred in the first three Sniper films, and in the fourth, his character’s son was the lead. They team up for this installment. It comes out September 30th

A rogue gunman is assassinating high-ranking military officers one by one. When Gunnery Sgt. Brandon Beckett is informed his father, legendary shooter Thomas Beckett has been killed, Brandon springs into action to take out the perpetrator. But when his father rescues him from an ambush, Brandon realizes he’s a pawn being played by his superiors to draw out the killer. It’s up to the two men, bound by blood, to bring an end to the carnage.

Company Of Heroes: The Fourth Reich is currently shooting in Bulgaria, it’s the sequel to 2013′s Company of Heroes, based on the video game series. In that they have the same title, and that’s about it. No solid information on this one yet, only that it is filming.

Finally, Don Michael Paul is headed to South Africa to begin filming another Tremors film, which he calls a reboot. Whether it is a reboot or just a sequel with a whole new cast, no one knows.
UPDATE: Moviehole has learned that the Tremors film is in fact another sequel, with Michael Gross returning as Burt Gummer! This is great news, as Gummer is awesome and is the heart of the Tremors franchise!

The main source for the Tremors information isa mysteriously deleted post quoted below:

Hey all you “Company Of Heroes” fans, I’m back in Sofia, Bulgaria getting ready to do another in the series. This one’s called “The Fourth Reich” and it promises to have more of the same only better. For all you out there that hated on the first movie, I’m sorry. But I took all your comments to heart and will try to improve on some of the things you were unhappy with. I am always fighting budgetary issues, but I promise to try and give you what you like and minemalize what you did not. Casting is underway, no news on that front, but I hope to deliver some great actors and maybe even a cool name or two. It’s good to be back and working!!! Keep an eye out for “Jarhead 2: Field Of Fire.” Universal is sending it your way on August 19, 2014, and then comes “Sniper: Legacy” from Sony on September 30. My friend Tom Berenger and Dennis Haysbert showed up for Sniper and made the movie a great experience. Great actors and good people, too. After I finish up “Company Of Heroes: The Fourth Reich” I will be headed to Johannesburg, South Africa to reboot the “Tremors” franchise for Universal. Big year ahead and I’m excited to keep it going with the support of all you genre movie lovers out there. Keep sending me your thoughts. They are always welcome, even the critical ones. I’ll shout out to you all soon. Stay tuned!!!!!

If anything else surfaces, we’ll let you know!

Tremors news originally found by JoBlo
image via

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Posted by Tars Tarkas -  at 11:56 am

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Death Curse of Tartu (Review)

Death Curse of Tartu

Death Curse of Tartu
Written and directed by William Grefé
Death Curse of Tartu
An ancient Indian curse strikes those that trespass on Tartu’s burial land, as Tartu awakens and transforms into animals to slay all comers. This cheap 1966 horror flick looks its budget, and comes complete with a good deal of padding. But underneath is the bones of a good horror flick, and had it been more than a rush job, Death Curse of Tartu might have gained a small cult following. For now, it’s place in on the Something Weird DVD alongside Sting of Death, the two classic Floridan horror flicks united forever.

Death Curse of Tartu was shot in 7 days, made in a hurry after Joseph Fink and Juan Hildago Gato from distributors Thunderbird International acquired Sting of Death, and needed a horror film to play with it as a double feature for the drive-ins. Unable to get another, they commissioned William Grefé to just make a new film, provided the production began immediately. Grefé spent 24 hours straight writing the script, and they were filming within 10 days. The basic concept was transplanting the cursed mummy type films to the Florida Everglades, as Grefé was based in Florida at the time. Florida was a compact B-movie hub from the 50s through the 70s, giving the nice weather of California with the closer proximity to New York in an era where cross-country travel was less common.
Death Curse of Tartu
Grefé’s commentary has some funny stories, particularly when telling tales of the animal handlers he used for Death Curse of Tartu and a few others. There’s also some casual admittance that the animal handlers weren’t the nicest to some of the snakes, and a general fear of the anaconda used in Tartu that lead to the casting of snake handler Frank Weed, as he was the only one who would wrestle the snake. Grefé tells of when a tv news crew came to film the filming, and he struggled with the snake for their cameras, but the anaconda started constricting and it took four guys to get it off him. So maybe some tv news station in Florida has amazing footage in their archive, provided it hasn’t been destroyed by 50 years of hurricanes.
Death Curse of Tartu
If you remember that old MST3K short Catching Trouble where this jerk named Ross Allen spent his day capturing animals, Death Curse could form sort of a companion piece. Some of the stars are actual Floridan animal capturers like Ross, as are some of the characters. There is even a Seminole Indian character, he’s also the only one with the smarts not to go to the cursed land, not blindly following a white master for money like Old Sourpuss from Catching Trouble.
Death Curse of Tartu

Ed Tison (Fred Piñero) – Leader of the expedition into the swamp to find Indian artifacts, and to meet up with his partner Sam Gunter. Whom he only finds the body of. Leads the fight against Tartu, which is mostly futile. Like many of the actors in Tartu, he’s a Cuban refugee.
Julie Tison (Babette Sherrill) – Ed’s wife, who usually votes against his ideas. They seem to have a strained marriage, but maybe a weekend of fighting an Indian curse is just the cure they need!
Billy (Bill Marcus) – An Indian guide who refuses to go into the cursed area. So he doesn’t, but he does provide a bit of expository dialogue.
Cindy (Mayra Gómez Kemp) – Redheaded member of the teens who tag along due to their intense interest in making out— I mean, archaeology! Is a very good screamer, probably why she’s kept alive the longest of the cannon fodder characters. Marya Gómez Kemp went on to have a very successful career in Spain.
Tartu (Doug Hobart) – An Indian witch doctor who cursed his burial land, declaring he’s slaughter anyone who disturbed it. Putting his burial land in the middle of the swamp 400 years ago seemed smart, until those darn white people showed up and keep trespassing. So they got to die! Tartu can turn into an anaconda, a shark, a rattlesnake, an alligator, and even the most dangerous animal. No, not gophers, man! This makes Tartu the original Manimal! Doug Hobart also played the monster version of the Jellyfish Man in Sting of Death.

Death Curse of Tartu
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Posted by Tars Tarkas -  at 7:34 am

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More King Kong, more Godzilla, kaiju taking over theaters!

King Kong vs Godzilla poster
The most exciting news out of Comic-Con wasn’t blurry cams of trailers of comic book films or galleries of cosplay that are just excuses to post scantily clad women, but the news from Legendary Films about their upcoming batch of giant monster films. Yes, that’s plural, because in addition to two Godzilla sequels, the long-rumored King Kong prequel is confirmed for November 4, 2016!

Titled Skull Island, no details on the King Kong film are known at this time, but it sounds like an evolution of the 2009 story of Kong: King of Skull Island:

Producers at the shingle have picked up the rights to the book “Kong: King of Skull Island,” a prequel to the well-known tale of the big ape.

Penned by Joe DeVito and Brad Strickland, book focuses on the backstory of Skull Island and how the giant gorilla became king there. It introduces other giant gorillas and dinosaurs only hinted at in the previous films.

How much of that is still in effect, no one knows except Legendary Films, and they ain’t talking!

Not to be outdone, Godzilla 2 promises not just the return of Godzilla, but some other famous kaiju as well: Mothra. Rodan. King Ghidorah. This means lots and lots of monster mayhem! I’m totally in, and Godzilla‘s massive success means lots and lots more money for the budget, so there will be more monster fights. Gareth Edwards is set to return. No release date is set for Godzilla 2, but we will keep you posted.

Could these films be leading towards the ultimate match-up, Godzilla vs. King Kong? Because they better be! ::shakes fist:: King Kong needs to battle Godzilla again, because you can’t end things in a tie! You need another film where things end in a tie, or at least they stop fighting to team up against a greater threat.

Between these films and Pacific Rim 2, it’s a good time to be a kaiju fan!

And where’s Jet Jaguar???

via THR and THR

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Posted by Tars Tarkas - July 28, 2014 at 12:05 pm

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Sting of Death (Review)

Sting of Death

Sting of Death
Written by Al Dempsey and William Kerwin
Directed by William Grefé

How dare you complain about the Strategic Helium Reserve!

A Jellyfish Man terrorizes Florida in Sting of Death, and in so doing becomes one of the most ridiculous movie monsters in history. Not only is there a Jellyfish Man, but Sting of Death comes complete with it’s own rocking theme song, Do the Jellyfish by Neil Sedaka!

Sting of Death is important because the monster suit is ridiculous! He’s got a big balloon for a head! The rest of the costume is a wetsuit with partial monster slime glued on, but the gloves are painfully obvious thanks to some closeups. It’s one of the most ridiculous monster suits of all time. In fact, an list of awful monster costumes that does not contain the Jellyfish Man is suspect at best.
Sting of Death
Yes, a Jellyfish Man terrorizes women. Aside from that, it’s a pretty straightforward Creature of the Black Lagoon ripoff with elements of other horror classics thrown in. It also has a surprisingly high bodycount and many characters who act like gigantic douchenozzles. Almost enough to make you cheer for the Jellyfish Man. So instead, I just cheer for everyone to die. I almost get my wish. Almost…

Sting of Death features plenty of women in bikinis who are manhandled (Jellyfish Manhandled?) and killed by the monster. The (obvious) villain is revealed to have all sorts of issues with women, but these types of films also explore the creators’ issues with women. Sometime there are so many issues that you have to put them into longboxes and sell them 6 for $1 at conventions. Let’s also just ignore how easy it was to transition into talking about comic books while discussing issues with women.

There was almost an unbelievable tragedy with regards to Sting of Death, in that the film was almost lost forever. In fact, when a print was located, it was in terrible condition and covered with mold, causing a scramble to try to find a lab that could handle all the mold and decay. Luckily for film preservation history, things turned out okay, and now that Sting of Death is in the digital world, where it will exist forever. Being spread around on tapes, DVDs, on-demand streaming, digital downloads, torrents, and all methods of media sharing.

Sting of Death is on a Something Weird double DVD along with Death Curse of Tartu. Both feature commentary by director William Grefe, and include some cool information about the filming. Grefe is well aware that he made a low budget horror film with some ridiculous effects, but that’s part of the fun. Through this we learn the bump on Jack Nagle’s head was an actual injury that had to be written into the film, but it looks totally fake, which is hilarious. Another fun feature is one of the actresses is named Blanche Devereaux, who you might recall is a character on The Golden Girls, which is set in Florida.
Sting of Death
The scene set to “Do the Jellyfish” is hilarious because of the awful dancing. Every extra is dancing to a different beat and mixing up 1960s styles. You can’t help but be entertained by this sequence. Sting of Death was released in 1965, just as Neil Sedaka’s career was careening downward (his type of music was pushed out of the charts by the arrival of the Beatles, and Sedaka would be without a label by 1966), so this was a great get to have a former number 1 artist do the movie theme to such a ridiculous piece.

Parts of Sting of Death remind one of a beach party movie, but this goodhearted fun doesn’t last as some of the snobby boys begin mercilessly mocking Egon because of his deformity. While many of the women seem fine with this, there is one or two who object to the cruelty on display. Their protestations do little to stop the abuse, and will matter little later when the killing spree begins. The bad behavior makes many of the deaths much more satisfying, but Egon ruins all attempts to make him appear justified in his rampage. The bad behavior of the monster can’t be excused by bullying, he was killing before the party began and is full of excuses. The deaths keep him from gaining the coveted tragic villain slot, instead just turning him into yet another monster. He was treated like a monster for so long, he (literally) became one.
Sting of Death

Dr. John Hoyt (Joe Morrison) – Our generi-hero, a young handsome scientist who works with Dr. Richardson and has eyes on his daughter, Karen. Like all scientists, he’s a muscular manly-man who wouldn’t be out of place on the cover of one of those Men’s Adventures magazines.
Karen Richardson (Valerie Hawkins) – Daughter of Dr. Richardson and a scientist in her own right, but not a career scientist, she only helps out. Is sort of sympathetic to Egon, but hangs around with obnoxious jerks a lot.
Egon (John Vella) – Creepy hunchbacked one-eyed assistant who has an unnatural obsession with jellyfish. And there is a Jellyfish Man on the loose. Hmm… Has a habit of sneaking up on people. At one point is taunted by obnoxious party idiots. Has a crush on Karen.
Dr. Richardson (Jack Nagle) – Famous Florida scientist who does research on marine creatures, which includes jellyfish. Is very good at convincing his daughter to bring down a ton of hot single college girls to help with the research. Why, yes, he’s single, how could you tell? Has a bump on the head.
Jellyfish Man (Doug Hobart) – He’s got to be jelly, because jam don’t shake like that! Despite the enormous amount of jellyfish parts, Jellyfish Man retains his human intelligence, and murders and sabotages his way to his plans to destroy everyone out of hate. Especially women.

Sting of Death
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