Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Film Discoveries of 2017 - Dick Grunert ""

Friday, February 9, 2018

Film Discoveries of 2017 - Dick Grunert

Dick Grunert has spent time as a staff writer on the Emmy Award-winning Cartoon Network series "Adventure Time." He has also written and directed several short horror films, including "The Trap," which has screened at over many film festivals over the past years.

Check out his Film Discoveries from last year here:
http://www.rupertpupkinspeaks.com/2016/12/film-discoveries-of-2016-dick-grunert.html

Follow him on twitter @dgrunert.
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THE BROTHERHOOD OF SATAN (1971)
I discovered this weird little gem on one of those Mill Creek 3-in-1 Blu-ray combo packs along with Torture Garden and The Creeping Flesh. It starts out like Children of the Corn, where the creepy children in a small town who seem to have psychic powers start murdering all of the adults, but then the focus shifts to a group of adults (including Strother Martin and L.Q. Jones who also co-wrote the script!) holed up in a building while they try to figure what the hell is going on. Then they throw in a Satanic cult of elderly people to up the bonkers ante. Good stuff!
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SCREAM FOR HELP (1984)
I caught this wacky flick at the New Bev last year after hearing about how crazy it was, and it definitely lived up to the hype. A teenage girl suspects her charming/sleazeball stepfather is plotting to murder her and her mom, and she sets out to stop him. This film was inexplicably written by Tom Holland and directed by the one and only Michael Winner, but it feels more like it was written by a 12 year-old boy who doesn’t understand anything about girls and directed by… well, Michael Winner. The New Bev audience ate it up and made for one of the most entertaining theatrical experiences of the year.
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ENCOUNTER WITH THE UNKNOWN (1972)
This obscure anthology film features 3 stories narrated by the great Rod Serling, but this is no Twilight Zone, folks. It has all the production value of those educational films you’d see in elementary school. The first and last stories aren’t particularly good, but the middle one, about a young boy who loses his dog in the woods and finds a mysterious hole with fog and an eerie moaning sound coming out of it, is worth checking out.
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SCREAM, PRETTY PEGGY (1973)
I went through a phase last year watching every made-for-TV horror movie from the 70’s and 80’s I could find, and this one was my absolute favorite. A college girl strapped for cash takes a job taking care of the cranky elderly mother (Bette Davis) of a local sculptor. The girl quickly discovers there’s something sinister going on in the artist’s workshop. For a TV movie from 1973, this film has tons of atmosphere and a couple of pretty great twists along the way. I wish someone like Scream Factory would put it out so more people could discover it.
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MADHOUSE (1981)
Arrow video released this one, and it’s my favorite discovery of the year. I can’t even begin to describe to you what it’s about without sounding like a complete lunatic — there’s an evil twin, a killer dog, and a birthday party from Hell. Actually, the less you know going in, the better. Trust me, the film is gorgeously shot and tons of ghoulish fun.
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1 comment:

George White said...

I also saw Scream Pretty Peggy, had a fest of US TV movies (currently having a fest of Soviet SF).
Very good, very gothic, like a Brian Clemens' Thriller, but actually good, and not slow, and not descending into soapdom.