Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Film Discoveries of 2015 - Jeremy Allison ""

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Film Discoveries of 2015 - Jeremy Allison

Jeremy Allison is the self-proclaimed Made for TV Mogul and Keeper of the Weird at LA’s greatest video store, CineFile Video! Follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @jeremyallison!
Burnt Offerings (1976)
As a huge fan of Dan Curtis and his TV show DARK SHADOWS, as well as his Made for TV Movies THE NIGHT STRANGLER, THE NIGHT STALKER, DEAD OF NIGHT, THE NORLISS TAPES and of course, TRILOGY OF TERROR, I had been dying to see BURNT OFFERINGS for years. Unfortunately for me, the DVD was way out of print and way too expensive. Thanks to the awesome people at Kino Lorber, I finally got to see this cult classic, and was blown away. This amazing “haunted house” film, starring the always great Karen Black, Oliver Reed and Bette Davis, and featuring supporting roles from character actors Dub Taylor and Burgess Meredith, this creepy, moody film has quickly shot up to be one of my favorite horror films of all time!

Some Call it Loving (1973)
Not so much a discovery, as it is a re-discovery. I had watched this before on an old bootleg DVD years ago from a terrible VHS transfer from an old TV broadcast from the early 90s. Basically, SOME CALL IT LOVING is a dark, dramatic love story riff on the classic Sleeping Beauty fairy tale. The new Blu-ray/DVD reissue from Etiquette Pictures is one of the most beautiful transfers I’ve ever seen, bringing out the best of the beautiful cinematography by Mario Tosi (CARRIE, THE STUNT MAN). It also doesn’t hurt that the performances by Zalman King, Tisa Farrow and Richard Pryor are all fantastic!

Who Killed Mary Whats’ername? (1970)
Sure, it’s not the greatest film ever made, but it sure is a hell of a lot of fun. Red Buttons plays a former boxer who, disappointed with the police's apathy to investigate, attempts to solve the murder of his friend, a hooker who lived in his apartment building. Along the way, he recruits Sam Waterston (who plays a hippie experimental filmmaker), Sylvia Miles, Conrad Bain, Ron Carey and Bosley himself, David Doyle! Shot almost entirely on location in New York City with a cast of brilliant 1970s character actors, and a soundtrack by jazz legend Gary McFarland, it’s not currently available on DVD, but I think this is one to go out of your way to check out.

The Fan (1982)
I knew nothing about this amazing German film when Mondo Macabro released it earlier this year on Blu-ray, but the cover art intrigued me and I decided to give it a chance. From the second I pressed play, I was hooked. It’s a deep, dark horror story of teenage obsession, with a badass new wave soundtrack. I can’t remember the last time I was so taken by a film. It’s just brilliant. By far the best blind purchase I’ve ever made.

Middle Age Crazy (1980)
I’m only 29, but for some strange reason, I’ve always really related to mid-life crisis films and, as far as I’m concerned, MIDDLE AGE CRAZY, based on a song by the great Jerry Lee Lewis and produced by Sid and Marty Krofft, is one of the best of that strange subgenre. Bruce Dern stars as Bobby Lee, a just-turned 40 year old Texas architect who’s bored with his life and wants something, anything new. His wife, played by Ann-Margret, loves him and does everything she can to please him, but he’s still distant and uninterested. While trying to find himself, he buys a Porsche and starts an affair with a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader. Also along the way, he has multiple surreal dream sequences where he fantasizes about having sex with his son’s girlfriend in the backseat of a car, officiating his own funeral and giving a graduation speech at his son’s high school graduation, telling the kids “Fuck the future!”. Unfortunately, this amazing film is only currently available on VHS. If there’s one movie I’d kill for on an official Blu-ray/DVD, it’s this one.

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