Incognito Cinema Warriors XP – Episode 1 – Bride of the Gorilla (Review)

Incognito Cinema Warriors XP – Episode 1 – Bride of the Gorilla

2008Official Site
Directed by Brandon Scott, Ryan P. Davis, and Rikk Wolf
Created by Rikk Wolf, Rob Atwell, and Kyle Chestnut

A dual review! Yes, TarsTarkas.NET attempts to get creative and review both a fantastic fan-series episode of Incognito cinema Warriors XP and the movie they riff on, Bride of the Gorilla! Will we succeed? Or will we just alienate our audience because there are no boobs in this movie? And what role will former President Taft serve? Find out all of this in the Dual Review, starting……NOW!

Incognito Cinema Warriors XP is a fan series produced in Kansas City, Missouri, that launched in 2008. For the two of you who read bad movie websites and have no idea, there was a show called Mystery Science Theater 3000 that riffed on bad movies, thus Incognito Cinema Warriors XP tries to follow in the footsteps of the greatest show that was ever made. No, not Salute Your Shorts! MST3K! Why else would I bring it up? Geez… So we have the same formula (one dude, two bots, evil scientist, awful movies, zombies) Okay, the zombies are different, because the plot is slightly altered. ICWXP has produced several episodes (three have been released as of this writing, with a few shorts and two more episodes in various stages of productions.) The production values are top notch, the kinds of things you want to see from a fan film. Their official site has downloads and wallpapers and images and stuff. There is also a secret section that will mail you 50 pounds of gold if you find it! Except that secret section probably doesn’t exist.

So the basic run-down of the show’s plot is: In an undisclosed Midwestern city (Kansas City), CORPS (Command of Re-Animate Processing and Suppression) fights zombies, but they all die except Commander Rikk Wolf, who ducks into the Cine-A-Sorrow Theater to hide out. There, he encounters two wise-cracking worker droids – Topsy-Bot 5000 and Johnny Cylon – and the trio is soon being threatened by the theater’s mad scientist owner Dr. Harrison Blackwood, who traps them in Theater 6 and forces them to watch his crappy movies. Because otherwise, Dr. Blackwood will open the doors and in come the zombies! So the riffing begins as the movies roll, mixed in with the required host segments. ICWXP promises that there will be a larger post-apocalyptic plot as the series continues, but as this is a fan series it can go in any direction. Looking ahead, they already have cast changes like most fan productions.

But first the Roll Call!

Commander Rick Wolf (Rikk Wolf) – agent of C.O.R.P.S. (Command of Re-Animate Processing and Suppression) trapped in Kansas City as it is overrun with the undead. He takes refuge in a movie theater that just happens to have talking robots and a mad scientist who forces them to watch crappy movies or else he’ll open the doors and the undead will feast on their flesh. Well, Rikk’s flesh, I guess the robots will just watch.
Topsy-Bot 5000 (Rob Atwell) – The more sarcastic and less liking of humans of the two bots. And he has popcorn for a head! His voice totally reminds you of Tom Servo’s first voice, and he even fills the Tom Servo role. Is 2’1″, 35 pounds, and 54 years old. See, I read the wallpaper.jpg! How much of that weight is popcorn?
Johnny Cylon (Zach Legler) – The Crow T. Robot because his arms work. Less likely to turn you into a gorilla. Is 1’5″, 15 pounds, and 51 years old according to his wallpaper.jpg.
Dr. Harrison Blackwood (Rob Atwell) – The deranged inventor who runs the Cine-A-Sorrow Theater and mysteriously disappeared, only to return as soon as Rikk Wolf is trapped in the theater to force Rikk and the bots to watch crappy movies.

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Cozzilla (Review)


aka Godzilla, il re dei mostri


Directed by Ishiro Honda and Terry O. Morse (USA)
Italian rearrangement and direction by Luigi Cozzi

Godzilla, il re dei mostri (hence after known as Cozzilla) began life long ago as 1954’s Gojira. After becoming a box office hit in Japan, the film was recut for America with scenes added starring Raymond Burr (at that time relatively unknown.) Godzilla, King of the Monsters proved to be a hit in America as well. Sequels were spawned, a franchise was born, and new Godzilla films were being produced 50 years later. The US cut of Gojira is not the only overseas modified version. Another one has gained some fame for the many odd alterations done to it. Writer/director Luigi Cozzi is a big fan of Godzilla, wrote a book about Big G, and is even nicknamed Cozzilla by his friends. Cozzi is best known here for being the director/Writer of Star Crash, Contamination, and the Lou Ferrigno Hercules movies, as well as the writer of Devil Fish (featured on MST3K.) None of those films are known for their stellar plots or special effects, but instead their cheese and terribleness. Here, one finds that even with a great movie base to work off of, you can ruin a final product.

Cozzi set out to share with Italy the great monster film, but he knew he would have to alter it for Italian audiences. In 1977, no one went to black and white films, thus Cozzi set up an elaborate colorization process known as Spectrorama 70. Colored gels were set behind frames of the film, oversaw by Armando Valcauda. New music cues were put together by Alberto Moro to go with the altered length of the film. Scenes were chopped out, and much new footage was added, but mostly World War II stock shots of bombed cities, weapons firing, and dead bodies. Yes, actual dead bodies. Also, a shark fights an octopus from The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms towards the end.

The only known copy of this film is a VHS tape that had direct footage from a 16mm print (complete with reel announces.) As the tape was old, parts of it are choppy, and it appears to cut off abruptly at the end. wtfFILM got a hold of a copy of the tape and helped allow the world to see it, first by providing DVDRs and then uploading the film to Google Video. You can see the film here with their review. Some of the background information mentioned here was revealed there, and they even subtitled the movie themselves! As of this writing the store is closed, but hopefully it will be open soon, he has some other neat stuff around (including a trailer I saw for a restored version of Cozilla, which looks like it might be re-color-altered from Godzilla KOTM DVDs! Maybe that will get compelted soon and we can have a real treat!)

Godzilla has always been an allegory about the dangers of the atomic bomb, even when he was dashing out of a cave to save TV hero Zone Fighter (okay, maybe not then) but this version of the film takes that to an extreme level. It is so extreme, I was expecting the film to be chugging Mt. Dew and snowboarding out of airplanes into a volcano. It is a depressing kind of extreme, as Godzilla turns into an indictment of war and the human race in general. Thanks to the ample WW2 stock footage, we see far too many real dead bodies for anyone’s taste. Sure, the original film was about the horrors of the atomic bomb, but they didn’t make you want to go curl up in a hole and cry. Talk about brushing your teeth with a shotgun! Thankfully, the VHS quality and the Spectorama 70 color bleed takes the wind out of the sails on some of the images’ graphic details.

The overall use of the color does some nice work setting the atmosphere of the film at times. Godzilla’s attack and the Tokyo destruction are shown as bright red, and makes it violent, chaotic, and tragic at the same time. I enjoyed that choice of color, but at other times the random blues, greens, and yellows seemed to be chosen haphazardly. Some of the screenshots will just look odd because of that. I tried to make many of the shots identical to the ones in the Godzilla, King of the Monsters review, so you can flip between them and see how the color made them different (ignoring the obvious difference in video quality.) In addition, I threw in new shots of the older altered movie and the new inserted footage. As we go along the plot, I’ll point out what differs, and copy over some of the similarities, as the basic story is the same.

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Godzilla, King of the Monsters (Review)

Godzilla, King of the Monsters!

aka Kaijû no Gojira


Raymond Burr as Steve Martin
Takashi Shimura as Dr. Kyohei Yamane
Akira Takarada as Hideto Ogata
Momoko Koochi as Emiko Yamane
Akihiko Hirata as Dr. Daisuke Serizawa
Frank Iwanaga as Security Officer Tomo Iwanaga
Toyoaki Suzuki as The Boy from Oto Island
Directed by Ishiro Honda and Terry O. Morse (USA)

Disclaimer: This is the 1956 American-cut version of Gojira. The 1954 film Gojira will be getting it’s own review eventually. Comparisons between the two will be discussed, but will not go into in depth at this time. So let’s get dangerous!

The original cinema production that introduced Godzilla to millions of Americans is still a powerful piece of film. Unlike later installments, when Godzilla was relegated to defending the world mode, here he’s non-stop brute force. People die, casualties of his attacks are seen in detail never reached again. Even so, the film is watered down from the original Japanese film. Thus, we’ll be hitting the brutality the hardest when the original is recapped. Be that as it may, we’re here with the American version, and we will soldier on. The major difference to even the most untrained eye is the addition of Raymond Burr. This was pre-Perry Mason. Pre-Ironside. Pre-Godzilla 1985. Raymond Burr plays American Reporter Steve Martin, no relation to our Steve Martin. He’s not a wild and crazy guy, he was not born a poor black man, and he doesn’t star in terrible remakes with 9,000,000 children. Burr and his translator wander around, inserting themselves into scenes from the original movie, basically recreating the film around him. Instead of a straight shot, the movie is recut to begin with a flashback to before Godzilla’s initial attack on Tokyo, and then regains real time after the plot has reached the initial beginning point. Thus, American audiences instantly see the destruction of Godzilla, without seeing the monster behind it. And so shall we…

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