Dirty Deals, Murder, Mob Goons, and a Kidnapping: Men at Work (1990)

Dirty deals, murder, mob goons, and kidnapping

So I was surfing through Amazon recommendations and I saw this starred Emilio Estevez and his brother Charlie Sheen, and was written by Emilio Estevez, I just had to watch it.

{Picture from Ringu)

I am so glad I did as this was hilarious!

I love Emilio Estevez, I always have ,so anything with him in it, I’m down for.

So we start the film off with a meeting between gangster rich guy, Maxwell Potterdam III (John Getz) and the Mayor running for reelection. Potterdam what kind of name is that for an evil villain/gangster? Sounds more like a nerd to me.

So Potterdam has been paying the mayor so that he could illegally dump his toxic waste, but the mayor is done with it. Unbeknownst to Potterdam, he’s sneaky and caught the gangster on tape.

Oh, wow…

Hmm…From there we switch to friends and coworkers, Carl Taylor (Charlie Sheen) and James St. James (Emilio Estevez). They share an apartment and Carl likes to stare out the window and watch his neighbors with binoculars, espechially the woman across the way.

Not okay.

He finds her beautiful and has memorized her whole routine-that’s creepy.

SUPER creeped

James and Carl are trashmen and not happy about their job, it pays the bills but what they really want is to have their own surf shop. They are also in a prank war with some other trashmen and have two cops who hate them.

They take care of the trash but are the worst trashmen ever. It is hilarious how they just toss the cans everywhere, go through the trash and take some things, etc.

From Clueless

Meanwhile, the Mayor was approached by his campaign manager, Susan Wilkins (Leslie Hope). She gives him a tape with a rap on it for his campaign but he ignores her, takes the tape he made the night before and takes it to the police chief. He plays it, but you guessed it-he took the wrong tape. He runs out to find Susan-while the police chief contacts Potterdam. Yep, you guessed it-he’s a dirty cop.

The worst!

That night the guys are hanging out and playing trivial pursuit. They notice a ruckus across the way when the mayor comes over. He’s yelling about a tape and pushes Susan. Carl gets upset and when Susan goes downstairs to look for the tape Carl gets his pellet gun and shoots him in the butt.

From Supernatural

The guys laugh as he screams in pain and they hide missing seeing some hitmen come in and garrote the mayor and remove his body.The mob men are supposed to take him and dump his body, but the two hitmen start arguing about music and they don’t realize that they have lost the body, he slips and falls into a trashcan.

That’s not good.

The next day the boys are called in to work early and read the riot act because they’ve had so many complaints. The boss’ brother-in-law needs a job, so he’ll be watching them, Vietnam vet Louis Fedders (Keith David).

They both are having a hard time working with him, as they don’t want to be “observed”. As they are taking out the trash they find the body and think Carl killed him. They both start freaking out.  Can’t they tell he wasn’t shot but garroted?

Thank goodness for the Louis. He points out to the guys that he wasn’t shot but garroted. They decide to take the body with them as hey don’t have a good relationship with the cops. This seems like a very bad idea.

They discuss this and are overheard by rivals at work-uh oh not good.

So they go out to try and discuss what must have happened and I love how Louis gets defensive about his fries. There are something a man (or woman) never shares.

Louis: There are several sacred things in this world that you don’t *ever* mess with. One of them happens to be another man’s fries. Now, you remember that, and you will live a long and healthy life.

They share about what they saw last night and Carl decides to go over and get information from the girl across the apartment. Louis and James will watch from their apartment with the pellet gun in case she turns deadly. Louis turns out to not be helpful to James as he starts to lose his grip on reality and thinking he is in Vietnam again.

That’s not good.

So while the guys are waiting they order a pizza and when he pizza guy delivers it he sees the dead body. Louis ties him up and he is along for the ride.

James: [offering a slice of pizza to the pizza delivery man] Are you hungry? Would you like some?

Louis: [having a Vietnam flashback] Don’t give him any, James.

James: Why not? He might be hungry.

Louis: He’s a prisoner; he should be treated accordingly.

James: Have you completely lost your mind? We’re not soldiers and he’s not the enemy. He’s a pizza man.

So Carl gets with Susan, lying and telling her that he’s a doctor. She’s actually into him and wants to go off to the beach. The rest of the group follows-Louis, James, the Pizza guy, and the dead mayor.

Meanwhile, the cops pull over James and Louis-although Louis uses he pellet gun to disarm them and the hitmen are after Susan and Carl.

That’s not good.

Susan and Carl cut a break when the hitmen get distracted by their bickering, they are really unprofessional, Hitman Biff gets mad that Mario bought a taser, “it was on sale”, instead of using a gun and makes fun of him again. That’s the last straw. He decides to use the taser on his partner.

Biff: [Biff is slowly coming to after Mario blasted him with a taser gun] Ooohhhh… what happened?

Mario: Man, it was something. You got struck by lightning.

Biff: Really?

Mario: Freak storm.

Susan and Carl are running and Carl scared spits out that he lied and that he isn’t a doctor but a trashman, and his name is Carl, and he watched her from across the way and saw the fight. When Susan hears that he was spying she slaps him twice, but she still takes off with him as he’s a better option than the hitmen.

What the group doesn’t know is that Carl and James’ coworkers have tracked them down to play a prank on them and have cut the brake and gas line. One of them drops their cigarette so when Carl and Susan reach it, boom it explodes.

The hitmen catch up to Susan and Carl and kidnap them, taking them to Potterdam and they get sealed in containers to be dumped.

That’s not good.

James, Louis, the Pizza man, and the dead body chase after them and we have a great scene where James and Carl are hanging on the gates of a truck screaming.

So they find Susan but they still have to deal with Potterdam. They end up going through the trash and creating a little carnival of horror to freak Potterdam out and stop him. Even the pizza guy joined in. It’s hilarious.

This movie is crazy, but in a good way. It was hilarious, fun, and I loved it. After I watched it I had to show my sister and friend.

For more Emilio Estevez, go to Don’t You Forget About Me

For more spying on the neighbors, go to One Day You’ll See Something You Shouldn’t: Rear Window (1954)

For more kidnapping, go to Super Power Girl, Blackmail, Gangsters, and a Serial Kidnapper: Strong Woman Bong Soon (2017)

We Made You a New Body. A Synthetic Shell. But Your Mind, Your Soul, Your “Ghost,” It’s Still In There: Ghost in the Shell (2017)

We made you a new body. A synthetic shell. But your mind, your soul, your “ghost,” it’s still in there.

So I had never seen this film before but my sister wanted to watch it during our Dystopian Future film fest during the beginning of shelter in place. I did remember the film as the controversy was huge. People were extremely upset over them casting Scarlet Johansson instead of an Asian actress, then getting mad when they tried to CGI a more Asian face, and so on.

mob

Grab your torches and sharpen your pitchforks!

 

So I watched this and…I hated this.

I was so bored fell asleep halfway through and then tried to watch it again, but just couldn’t connect to it. I couldn’t even tell what was going on.

I watched the anime film and that was much, much better. It is a high concept but it was understandable and much easier to follow. I was riveted to that story.

The biggest problem with this film was Scarlet Johansson. She was horrible.

She was so wooden and acted robotic. I don’t know if the director was overcompensating for making her not Asian and trying to say it wasn’t about race, if it was because of the CGI they planned to add and removed, if she just struggled with being robotic in her body and voice instead of just focusing on the voice like in Her. I mean there is a way to have a person be a robot/cyborg and still be able to connect to them and understand what they are experiencing and going through. Look at Robocop, look at the Terminator, etc. All those were much better depictions. I don’t know where the blame truly lies-director or actress, all I know it was awful…just a mess.

I don’t know…

I also felt the story really strayed from the original concept and became like a ripoff of Robocop meets Blade Runner.

It just was a big mess, and I’d skip it.

For more Dystopian Future films, go to Any Longer Out On That Road and I’m One of Them, You Know? A Terminal Crazy…: Mad Max (1979)

For more cyborgs, go to This is a Bad One, the Worst Yet. I Need the Old Blade Runner…: Blade Runner (1982)

For more Scarlett Johansson, go to We’re Mad Scientists. We’re Monsters: Avengers, Age of Ultron (2015)

A Man Dressed as a Giant Bat, Psychotic Deformed Man Wrecking Havoc, and a Zombie Cat Woman…A Batman Christmas: Batman Returns (1992)

Merry Christmas!

Just kidding! Today we are reviewing a horror film that also is a Christmas movie.

And for this year we are doing something special: Sleuthing Sundays.

Each Sunday I’ll post a film with a super sleuth! Our fourth and final film is:

Yes, it time for our annual Tim Burton film. Last year I reviewed Batman, and decided to cover the sequel.

Some of you might not think this counts for a horror film, as it is a superhero film but I say it does.

I mean we have a psychotic deformed killer.

And a zombie cat woman:

So I grew up watching this film and I just love it. When I think of Batman, to me it is always Michael Keaton or Kevin Conroy. There is no other Batman (although I do recognize Adam West, I just never watched his show until I was older) This is an absolutely amazing film and Keaton is an amazing Batman and Michelle Pfeiffer is the best Catwoman.

Originally Tim Burton and Michael Keaton hadn’t signed for a sequel, but were convinced when the script met all of Burton’s demands and Keaton only agreed to do the second film after a serious increase in his salary. Thank goodness for that or who else would we have had?

For me this movie is the end of the original film series as after this we had Val Kilmer and George Clooney take over, neither of which was very good in my opinion.

 It’s Christmastime and evil businessman Max Shreck (Christopher Walken) has committed many, many crimes. His secretary, Selina Kyle, discovered this and was murdered by him. Luckily, she was revived by the stray cats she’s been feeding. I kind of like that they never really answer the how and why. Sometimes it is better to leave it open-ended then to explain it strangely like in Catwoman. It pays to be a catlover.

From Breakfast at Tiffany’s

After she is revived she runs about Gotham and she is a fantastic character as she wants Shreck to pay, but other than that she has no real plan and just goes about-sometimes nice and sometimes cruel, like a cat. I love the scene when she saves the lady who was attacked in an alleyway but then gives her an angry lecture-that’s cattitude right there, or at least it makes me think of how my cat can be nice and then strike out at you.

Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot (Danny DeVito) was born deformed and tossed away by his parentns, found ad raised by circus people. He has discovered what Shreck has been doing and blackmails him. Shreck tries to use him, when the penguin comes up with a plan to make every parent and family pay.

The Penguin and Catwoman team up to take Batman down, when on the flipside Bruce Wayne and Selina have been growing closer and closer and falling in love. While Vicky was annoying, I really like them together. They have excellent chemistry and amazing timing.

Everything comes to a head at the Christmas Ball. Will Batman be able to stop the villains? Will Bruce lose another love?

I have to watch! {Picture from Ringu)

The filming is fantastic and the dialogue is amazing! Here are a few of my favorites: Alfred’s zingers

Alfred: Why are you now determined to prove that this Penguin is not what he seems? Must you be the only lonely man-beast in town?

After Selina has been revived and had her change of personality:

Selina Kyle: Honey, I’m home. Oh, I forgot. I’m not married.

Or when she sasses Batman:

[Catwoman is hit]

Catwoman: How could you? I’m a woman.

Batman: I’m sorry, I-I…[Catwoman hits him]

Catwoman: As I was saying, I’m a woman and can’t be taken for granted. Life’s a b****, now so am I.

And one of my favorite parts of the film:

Bruce Wayne: [working on the Batcomputer. Alfred sets down a bowl of soup in front of him. He picks up the spoon and takes a sip, only to spit it out] Cold!

Alfred: It’s vichyssoise.

Bruce Wayne: [stares, not knowing why it’s important]

Alfred: It’s *supposed* to be cold.

Bruce Wayne: [Eats it]

The costumes are great. The penguin is hideous and terrifying. Michelle Pfeiffer hated the costume as she was vacuumed sealed in it and had to take breaks as it constricted her so much she had trouble breathing. But it looks so cool. Deranged and cool.

A great film and I highly recommend it.

For more detectives, go to The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Meet Dracula, Part I: The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries (1977)

For more Batman, go to What Are You? I’m Batman!: Batman (1989)

For more Tim Burton films, go to Once, There Was Even a Man Who Had Scissors for Hands: Edward Scissorhands (1990)

For more Michelle Pfeiffer, go to Non-Austen Films for Austen Fans: Stardust (2007)

For more Christopher Walken, go to It was a Horseman, a Dead One. Headless: Sleepy Hollow (1999)

For more film-noir, go to This Is Fate We’re Talking About, and If Fate Works At All, It Works Because People Think That THIS TIME, It Isn’t Going to Happen!: Dead Again (1991)

 

The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Meet Dracula, Part II: The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries (1977)

So yesterday I reviewed part one and now we are on to the second part of The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Meet Dracula. Before we start Part II, let’s do a quick recap. So in the ’70s they had the show The Hardy Boys/ Nancy Drew Mysteries. Each week would alternate with an episode featuring The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew. When season two came out someone had the fantastic idea to do a crossover, and they ended up doing three more. These crossovers were my favorite as I ship Nancy Drew and Frank Hardy.

So Frank and Joe’s father is missing. They start searching for him and following his notes, running into Nancy Drew who was supposed to meet Mr. Fenton Hardy (the boys’ father). It turns out that Fenton was on the track of an art thief and had connected it a rock ‘n roll star, Allison Troy, who is playing at a rock festival, the Dracula Festival. Nancy and the Boys argue about who’s investigating, the boys going undercover by joining a band and Nancy and her friend Bess travel out to Transylvania.

Inspector Stavlin, friend of Fenton Hardy, does not like the way everyone is treating Dracula and warns everyone to watch out.

Joe is on stage singing, while Frank is searching the castle and gets trapped in a cell with a person who has two pinpricks on his neck Nancy and Bess just found them. What will happen next? Is Dracula really hiding in the castle or is there a human murderer running about? Who is the art thief? And will they ever find out what happened to Fenton Hardy?

Frank tells them to hurry and get a Doctor, Bess runs while Nancy picks the lock to get him out Frank is extremely impressed.

Oh, wow…

That’s another reason why I ship Nancy and Frank over Ned. Ned in this series was just so narcissistic and always talking down to Nancy. Frank was amazing as he liked Nancy and her skills. They are just so perfect together!

So the man in the cell isn’t dead but has a weak pulse-Frank tells him he met him earlier as he is part of the town’s council and the hotel owner. Nancy spots his neck and sees the bite marks…like a vampire bite.

Meanwhile, Joe continues singing. I think Shaun Cassidy is so adorable, and as much as I like David Cassidy, he’s my favorite of the brothers.

Stavlin comes and sees the bite maks and he gets one of the police members to get an ambulence while other people help carry Berger out.

Nancy: I think it is about time we started working together.

Frank: I think so too.

Nancy and Frank leave the caverns and head back upstairs to the party. Joe is at first upset to see Nancy (he’s still not over her harpooning their waiter) but Frank tells him about their new partnership-all working together. Nancy reveals that she came there specifically to look for them, Frank is pleased (oh Frank, he has a crush on Nancy) and she shares she has some info on their father. She thinks she might have found him.

She started searching not for Hardy, but Fredricks and found him in a monastery. Some Monks found him and tried to find his family, but the only ID he had on was Fredricks.

Found in a monastery? That sounds a lot like Dracula when Jonathan Harker was discovered in a convent, having been found by nuns. I love little touches like that.

The boys are relieved he isn’t dead, but wish he was doing better. Frank leaves to speak to the monk about his father’s care and what should be done next, while Joe stays with dad. Aw, Joe cries, Joe is so cute. Shaun Cassidy is a great actor, you forget that he is acting

The monk tells frank that one day his father did recover consciousness and for a brief moment said something about caverns, but the monk does’t know what that means. He too had a vampire-like bite.

From Horror of Dracula

Nancy says what they are all thinking, Dracula. Frank is amazed she could believe that, but Nancy states she doesn’t really think a vampire has arisen, but that someone wants them to think that.

You know, in the previous post I said that these brothers were the Dean and Sam Winchester, from Supernatural, of the ’70s and now that I think about it-this episode has some similarities to “Monster Movie“.  The brothers investigating a strange occurrence at a a festival happening, the older brother trying to get with the pretty girl, and a “vampire” running amuck…interesting.

Hmm…

The boys return from their visit and drop Nancy off at the hotel, then return to the castle to search the caverns. A bat flies by…Dracula?

Back at the castle the secret passage in the “crypt” moves and someone is stalking the night. It is the person we before…could it be… Dracula?

Frank is set on it being Allison Troy as that is the track his dad was on, but Joe isn’t sure. I mean Allison is cold and a diva, but the vampire dress up and “bite” seems a it farfetched for a rock star? But then again, I already reviewed two movies about Ted Bundy and both clearly showed that you never really know people as well as you think you do.

Hmm…

The boys leave the caverns deciding to sleep on it and resume the investigation in the morning. They just narrowly escape he who stalks the caverns.

The next day the townspeople are worried about Dracula and are hanging up garlic everywhere. The detectives decide to continue searching the next day when Troy is preoccupied with the concert.

Joe takes Allison Troy’s car, but finds nothing. Meanwhile, Nancy and Frank search Troy’s room. Hmm…wonder who picked that split. I’m sure Frank is trying to be like Fred and Daphne Nancy Drew.

Nancy and Fred find a lock-pickers kit under the bed, Frank thinks they are on the right track, but Nancy isn’t so enthused…she’s thinking.

Frank wants to go to Stavlin with the information, but it seems too easy. If he is such a great criminal with these art thefts why would he do something so stupid like leaving the lock-picks under the bed.

Hmm…from The Wolfman

Everyone in town are freaking out as they think Dracula has risen. They think they should stop the concert as it is their fault that Dracula has risen again. Others say they should burn the castle.

mob

Grab your torches and sharpen your pitchforks!

People be crazy, but Stavlin comes and starts yellling Dracula isn’t real and calms the people down and warning them that if they break any laws or abuse a guest they will be arrested.

So was it my imagination or did he previously seem to be saying Dracula is alive? But now he is telling everyone there is no Dracula…hmm. Does he believe or doesn’t he?

Hmmm…

Frank approaches Stavlin to tell them about Troy, but he is busy with the mayor. The mayor invites them to join them and share. He also gives them all steaming cups of cider.

Stavlin talks about the attacks of the last two days of two strong men being highly suspicious. But how did he know about Fenton being bit. When he spoke to the boys before he was clueless as to what had happened and Frank and Joe haven’t had a chance to talk to him yet. Hmm.

Hmm…treasure?

Stavlin warns the mayor that he might be the next victim and Frank questions why. Thanks for asking Frank as I was wondering the same thing. Stavlin says it parallels the Dracula story that has been passed on for generations, while that has nothing to do with the book Dracula, what is he talking about?

Frank brings up his father who has nothing to do with the Dracula legend. So yes, here it sounds as if he believes in Dracula being alive. Hmmm….

Hmm…

Frank and Nancy share their discoveries and what they found in Troy’s room. Nancy also shares that it feels like a frame job. Stavlin isn’t too surprised and brushes them off saying he will look into it.

He warns the mayor that he must guard his life, that the other men survived but the next, the mayor, will die.The mayor laughs him off, but I’d be worried about Stavlin.

SUPER creeped

That night the mayor locks himself in his office while Frank walks Nancy home oooohhhh

Nancy sleeps fitfully, while in his room Frank paces the room and He (the guy from the cavern, possible Dracula) stalks the night.

Someone creeps through the window watching Nancy, someone who looks very Dracula like.

Joe and Bess return, what have they been up to?, while a bat flies in to attack Nancy, a bat or vampire?!! Joe, Frank, and Bess hear her and Frank breaks the door down and picks up Nancy carrying her to safety in the hallway, leaving Joe and Bess fight it.

Nancy is understandably freaked at this vampire bat attacking her and clings to Frank ooooooooooohhh

Frank realizes the room was locked from the inside, so someone hid the bat in the room…or Dracula exists.

From “Monster Movie” from Supernatural

The group are talking in the restaurant and Stavlin overhears them. He questions them but believes Dracula is real. The Mayor’s housekeeper comes to Stavlin for help as she cannot get the master and he wont answer. All the men break the door down and find him…dead! Bite mark on his neck!

Oh, he’s not dead. He’s still alive.

Frank is trying to figure this out but the room is locked from the inside, the window has bars, the fireplace has a high fire…what, how, uh?

Wow!

So while the first episode was good, they also had a lot of setting up to do with the meet cute, them getting to Transylvania, etc. This one is far more thrilling as we either have Dracula arisen from the grave or a crazy person wanting everyone to think he’s Dracula. Either way I am stone cold invested.

The next day Troy is arrested and the concert stopped. All the townspeople cheer and wish they had listened to Stavlin about not having the rock concert in the first place. They ask about evidence and Stavlin shares about the lock-picks and that he found a map in the trunk of his car. Here Joe speaks up as he searched last night, remember and found nothing.

Bess also speaks up that she was watching Troy and his group all night and they never left the castle. Stavlin is upset but as there are all these contradictions he decides to let Troy go.

Stavlin tells the detectives that if it isn’t Dracula attacking or Troy and there was no one else could the mayor have hurt himself?

Hmm…

The mayor is offended that Stavlin could suggest it, but Stavlin ignores him and Stavlin has him arrested. Stavlin explains as a political move, which makes no sense to me. Why would he do that? How does it help him? I’m so confused. These people don’t question Stavlin but ask him to take over until they have an election.

Stalin refuses at first but at their urges acquiesces to do as the council wishes.

So after all that excitement they head back to the hotel. Frank and Nancy are doing a sort of “you hang up first” routine, making it beyond obvious to Bess and Joe that they hav feelings for each other. Joe decides to show up his brother, like always, and makes a move on Bess getting a kiss.

I can’t believe any of these guys are really going to bed. I mean I have read a lot of these books, after that exchange of Stavlin and the townspeople, they should be investigating.

Frank and Joe head back to the castle as Frank doesn’t believe in the explanation given by Stavlin, and it is really thin. How does bringing “Dracula” help his career? He’s been doing horrible ever seen Dracula “arose from the grave”. Frank wants to search the castle and Dracula’s grave.

The boys search the caverns which are spoooky.

Creepy…

Frank takes Joe to Dracula’s “grave” which reveals the secret passage, Frank goes into it, Joe following. Inside it has all the paintings from all the robberies. Joe wants to leave, he’s a bit creeped out, but Frank won’t let them as he wants to jeep searching. He finds the coffin and can’t stop as he has to open it to reveal……………………………………………………………………..

Bones!!!!!!! So yeah bones not a vampire.

Stavlin interupts them dressed in vampire clothing. Yes it was Stavlin who was stealing the art. You see they are forcing him to retire due to his age so he started stealing to create a little nest egg. He always spend all his time in the castle and used it as a special place to reenact his desire to be Dracula.

Yes, he uses the room and castle to pretend to be Dracula. That’s why he didn’t want the rock group there. Someone might go poking around and find his little secrets.

The Hardy Boys figured out how he attacked the mayor. He must have drugged the mayor’s cider, and he knew that the maid would come to him for help. He was the first on the scene and when he checked the mayor and blocked him from view to  “protect” the housekeeper he must have made the wound.

He tried to frame Troy but Joe and Bess foiled it, so he had to blame the mayor.

Stavlin locks the door and they are locked in the castle with a madman, only stopped by Nancy, Fenton, and Bess. Stavlin is surprised and he falls into the trapdoor he set up for the boys and is arrested. He’s no Dracula, if anything he’s crazy old Reinfeld.

Renfield from Dracula (1931)

Stavlin is taken away and says these crazy things like he might escape, Joe sees him pass by a mirror and doesn’t see Stavlin’s reflection.

Could he be Dracula arisen from a the grave, a real vampire, or a trick mirror?

Hmm…

It doesn’t answer that and I like that.

These are always my favorite episodes of the series and so much fun. I highly recommend checking them out.

For more Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries, go to A Haunting We Will Go: The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Mysteries (1977)

For more Nancy Drew, go to Those Men Are Not Going to Stand for Nancy Drew Poking Her Little Nose Into Their Affairs: Nancy Drew, Detective (1938)

For more Dracula, go to Count Dracula the Propagator of This Unspeakable Evil Has Disappeared. He Must Be Found and Destroyed!: Horror of Dracula (1958)

For more Detectives, go to It’s a Weird Case from the Start. A Case With a Hole in the Center: Knives Out (2019)

For more mysteries, go to One Day You’ll See Something You Shouldn’t: Rear Window (1954)

The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Meet Dracula, Part I: The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries (1977)

So I love Nancy Drew.

Time to get on the case!

I grew up reading The Nancy Drew Case Files and loved it-my favorites being the crossover mysteries with the Hardy Boys. Now I know Nancy and Ned are meant to be together, but I have to admit-I really want Frank and Nancy to end up together. They are just so cute together!

So this episode is from the TV series, The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Mysteries. This show came out in the 1970s, the first season alternating every week between the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew. The second season saw four crossover episodes, and only three Nancy Drew as the actresses playing her left the series. Season three was reworked to be just the Hardy Boys. I first discovered this show when I bought an old VHS with an episode on it, “A Haunting We Will Go“, at a library book sale.

It was a good series while it lasted, I just wish there had been more. If you are interested in watching, all these episodes are currently on youtube, here’s the link if you want to watch this one. I actually preferred the Nancy Drew episodes to the Hardy Boys, I mean I love Parker Stevenson and Shaun Cassidy but the Hardy Boys always solved CIA, Interpol, spy mysteries and I liked that you never knew what you were going to get with Nancy Drew-embezzlement, theft, murder, etc.

But my favorite of all the episodes were the crossovers episodes, this being the first of them, in fact the very first time any Hardy Boy and Nancy Drew crossover happened. So enough intro, let’s get on to the review:

Mystery, you say?

At the beginning of every episode we see the Universal logo. I’ve always wondered why they haven’t remade it, I would watch it. But then again they would probably mess it up like they did with Nancy Drew (2007) film.

forgetaboutit

So to start we have the awesome intro and amazing intro music.

I love the setup, and I espechially love the book covers in the background and that music. Ooh! It sends shivers up an down my spine and gets me in the mood for a mystery.

Creepy…

We start off with Fenton Hardy (father of the Hardy Boys) driving up to Dracula’s castle in a taxi, the driver complaining about the American Rock singer using Dracula’s castle.

The taxi driver/caretaker warns Mr. Hardy not to go inside-its very old and possibly cursed. The caretaker won’t stay as he s too afraid, and tells Mr. Hardy he will wait for him at the bottom oft hill. Good-bye.

See ya!

Mr. Hardy goes into the castle and a bat flies at him, Dracula?

He looks round but doesn’t spot anything, hmm.

Hmmm…from The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.

But we see that someone is behind him. Mr. Hardy drops his flashlight and lights a torch finding a skeleton in the passage of the castle he is searching, but before he can look further the person following him knocks him out cold.

That’s not good.

We move to Paris 5 days later. Joe (Shaun Cassidy) and Frank (Parker Stevenson) have arrived to the morgue as they lost contact with their dad and was notified of a body that fit his description. They go to to see if it is their father but it isn’t him, thankfully. They are happy he isn’t dead, but that begs the question what happened to him, and where is he?

Can I stop and talk about how adorable these guys are. I love both of them and their portrayal is spot on. They are not only entertaining but completely believable as brothers-at times I forget they aren’t really siblings. They are the Dean and Sam (Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki) of the ’70s.  Okay, now we can go back to the episode.

They go the hotel their father had rented a room in and spot a band playing outside, The Circus.

They go to their father’s room, but someone is inside searching it, it is Inspector Stavlin (Lorne Green) of the Romanian police. He was working with their father and trying to solve the case of art thefts occurring throughout Europe. Mr. Hardy called Stavlin to join him in Paris as he had a lead, but after that Stavlin hasn’t heard from him since.

That’s not good.

Stavlin encourages them to give up and go home, Obviously, he doesn’t know the Hardy boys very well as they are totally going to continue to go after their father. Stalin leaves as he has to return to Transylvania.

Joe is more superstitious and that perks him up right away, Transylvania as in Dracula?

The boys search the room and find their dad’s notebook in his usual hiding spot.

There is a list of dates on the art thefts, and something else was booked at the same time. There is a meeting note, which the boys intend to keep:

Munich

Meet at the Ritz

June 11 5:00 pm

Book Rm 301

Name Fredricks

There is also another note on about a Dracula Festival on June 12th. That sounds awesome.

They pay the band they spotted earlier, to join them. Of course the band is down for it as they will be making money. Joe is going to sing and first he is upset that Frank threw him out into it like that- but of course he can sing, he’s a Cassidy after all. And it turns out they are headed to the same Dracula festival-fantastic. They boys head to Munich and arrive on June 10th, just in time for the meeting. Frank sweet talks the concierge and gets the room. The boys leave their stuff and stop to get something to eat.

Meanwhile, Nancy Drew (Pamela Sue Martin) has arrived and is shock to hear there are a group instead of a man in Rm 302. She is traveling with Bess which is odd, as Nancy never brought her friends with her on “serious” cases, usually they were with her when things turned into a case.

Hmm…

Nancy is upset to hear that there are young men in the room instead of a 40-year old man. They send the suitcases back to the desk. Bess questions how does Nancy know that she hasn’t sent the contact away, but as they aren’t an older man so she doesn’t care.

From Mean Girls

I’m with Bess, that doesn’t seem like a good idea Nancy. What if your contact sent someone else in his place? What I would have done was stayed in the room and ordered room service until I could talk to the guys.

Frank spots the bellman and grabs their luggage sending them back up in the room. Meanwhile Joe is still trying to get the attention of a waiter, but no dice. Frank questions if it is his father, but finds out it is ladies. He sends the girls’ stuff down.

Joe tries to order but his waiter is stolen by Nancy. This exchange is hilarious and as Frank comes back in a bad mood because of the luggage, and it develops when there is no food on the table. Him being upset with Joe was so realistic, like real siblings. No joke, this is me and my sister.

From The Awful Truth

Meanwhile, Nancy has spotted her bags being taken down and sends her bags upstairs. She’s had enough and leaves Bess downstairs to eat while she heads up to the room. Frank and Joe also decide to go upstairs as they are tired of this too. Sharing the elevator, Frank is very into Nancy and tries to talk her up-but she’s in a hurry and Nancy brushes him off. Joe is upset with her as she stole their waiter. Frank is hurt to lose a chance with a beautiful girl, but Joe consoles him as he’ll see her again-she has the same room as them.

Nancy: What do you want? What are you doing in my room?

Joe: We want our waiter back

Frank: Joe!

Hilarious!!!! If I was Nancy I think I’d be a freaked out that this boy has diner rage to follow me my room. Like, this guy is crazy.

You are crazy From The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

Frank tells her this is their room. Then he threatens to take the bags out himself if Nancy doesn’t leave and when he tries to touch her luggage-Nancy does a Judo flip on him. I love how Frank and Joe are impressed with Nancy’s skills, as for Frank he likes her even more.

Of course they hash it out and discover that Nancy is the one supposed to meet their father.The boys share that he is missing and they are searching for him.  Nancy tells them she got on the case through her father. She and her friend were in Paris taking a summer class (that’s why Bess is with her) when one of her father’s client’s painting was stolen. It turned out to be one in a series and Nancy started to investigate it and came across Fenton Hardy. She spoke to Fenton 10 days ago, and he told her that he discovered that the rock group Allison Troy was always in the city that the art was stolen from. They believe it to be either Allison Troy or a member of his entourage. Nancy is set on taking over the case herself, but Frank and Joe aren’t letting go. As they have an in with the Dracula rock concert, they think Nancy should stay behind.

Nancy won’t be left behind as she is heading to Transylvania as well. She storms off to collect Bess.

Nancy Drew: Come on we have an appointment to keep.

Bess Marvin: With who?

Nancy Drew: Dracula

So the boys arrive at the castle a day early and it is a dark, spooky, rainy, and chilly night, of course it is as it is the Dracula’s castleThe band is too freaked that they head down to the town to relax.

Inspector Stavlin is at the hotel with the town council and is not happy about this concert and them using Dracula is such a way. No one else heads his warnings of troubles coming as everyone else is happy with the money coming in. Hotel’s almost sold out, restaurants packed, shops are doing good, etc.

The boys spot the Inspector and meet the mayor and the rest of the council. Stavlin continues to share his disgust at the idea of the Dracula festival. The mayor is making fun of him and asks who he fears…Dracula, coming for revenge? Stavlin states he isn’t afraid, but that the others should have more respect…Dracula desires it or else.

Frank shares that they found their father’s notebook and that their father had written about the festival. Stavlin thanks them for sharing and tells them if they find anything else to come to him.

When the boys sign in Joe spots that a B. Fredricks registered at the same hotel. So if his father came and was such good friends with Stavlin, why didn’t he meet him there? Is their father still there? Kidnapped? Dead?

Hmmm…

June 12th arrives and so starts the rock concert. Allison Troy is dressed up in a Dracula style outfit and has a party with many people dressed up as monsters. This looks so cool, I wish that it was real so I could go.

From Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School

The boys arrive and Troy and his people have the contracts and costumes. They warn the band to watch out for the crumbling castle and to treat the house with respect as it is a national treasure. One area they are not allowed to enter, it is forbidden. Of course the boys perk up on this and plan to investigate it later.

Stavlin is obsessed with Dracula, calling the castle a cemetery and acts like he believes Dracula is real and will rise again. The mayor hates Stavlin and is happy he’ll be gone soon he’s at the retirement age (they are forcing him to retire). The Mayor and the rest of the council are taking a tour of the castle as they haven’t been in there before.

Joe goes on to perform while Frank plans to search the castle. On of the running gags on this show is that every time Joe sings, Frank always misses it.

Frank starts searching the spooky castle, and someone is following him as we can see their boots.

That’s not good.

Meanwhile, Bess and Nancy have arrived in costume. Bess doesn’t want to search  the castle but stay and listen to Joe, but Nancy insists they need to search the cavern.

As the Mayor and friends are looking through out the castle, they find a large seal that says Dracula. This is supposedly his grave and the rest of the group and the caretaker/guide of the castle are all deeply frightened.

The mayor is the only one who has no fear and feels the Dracula story is just a lot of hooey. However, after they leave the “grave” we see it move aside and that someone resides in the chamber…or some monster. The black boots we have seen earlier come out. Is it Dracula having risen from the grave?

From The Horror of Dracula

One of the members of the group falls behind, its Berger the hotel owner, and is taken.

From the Cat and the Canary

The mayor and his people finish their tour and Frank is also searching passing by the seal. Nancy and Bess as well poke around the caverns. Bess is no help at all in this story as she just complains about being there in the cavern. As the girls pass by Dracula’s grave, the wall opens again and whoever it is (Dracula? ) starts following them.

From Return of the Vampire

Frank spots Berger in a cell and runs in to see if he is okay when he is locked in as well. Frank checks Berger and sees the vampire bit marks on his throat:

Nancy and Bess see them and Bess screams.

So typically Fridays are the days that I review TV episodes but as I couldn’t see waiting a whole week, I will post part II tomorrow.

So the second half of this episode I think is actually better. This one was a lot more set up with the detectives meeting up, getting them to Transylvania-more exposition. Tomorrow’s episode will have a lot more action to it.

The first time I saw this episode I was soooo into it I just had to find out what happened next. Where was their father? Would Nancy and Frank and Joe get along? Is it really Dracula or is it someone who thinks they are Dracula/pretending to be Dracula? As this was done by Universal I could see it going either way. We’ll find out tomorrow.

Until then….

For more Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries, go to A Haunting We Will Go: The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Mysteries (1977)

For more Nancy Drew, go to Those Men Are Not Going to Stand for Nancy Drew Poking Her Little Nose Into Their Affairs: Nancy Drew, Detective (1938)

For more Dracula, go to Count Dracula the Propagator of This Unspeakable Evil Has Disappeared. He Must Be Found and Destroyed!: Horror of Dracula (1958)

For more Detectives, go to It’s a Weird Case from the Start. A Case With a Hole in the Center: Knives Out (2019)

For more mysteries, go to One Day You’ll See Something You Shouldn’t: Rear Window (1954)

People Don’t Realize That There are Killers Among Them. People They Liked, Loved, Lived With, Worked With and Admired…: Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile (2019)

People don’t realize that there are killers among them. People they liked, loved, lived with, worked with and admired could the next day turn out to be the most demonic people imaginable

So a few weeks ago I posted my review of The Stranger Beside Me based on the book and life experiences of Ann Rule-the woman who worked and was friends with Ted Bundy. In that review I mentioned watching this film first and that I was working on my review-well that time has come.

So this film is told from the point of view of Ted Bundy’s girlfriend-Elizabeth Kendall and her experiences in meeting, falling in love with Ted Bundy, and then seeing him arrested and on trial for the murders.

The first thing I find interesting is the parallel’s with both were single mothers of daughters, both said that he was incredibly charming, trusted him, believed in his innocence far into the trial-yet when both heard the description of the man the police were looking for mentioned him. I mean they were both utterly shocked when all came out about what he did, but yet at the same time there seemed to always be this thought that not everything was as it seems.

Hmm…

So first off I thought this Netflix film was extremely good. The set design, costuming, etc was amazing. Everything evoked the 1970s and felt firmly like we were stepping back into that world. The Ann Rule film tried to go for a ’70s feel but it was mostly late ’90s/early 2000s.

Zac Efron as Ted Bundy was phenomenal as you could tell he really studied the mannerisms and tone of Ted Bundy as when you watch interviews of Ted Bundy-Efron was spot on. I also liked how the film reenforced what many thought of him at the time, handsome, charming, etc.

So I understand where the film was coming from, they wanted to show it from his girlfriend’s point of view, Elizabeth Kendall (Lily Collins)-how she saw him, how he loved her, showing that psychopaths aren’t always easy to spot as monsters right away as they are often charming, etc. The only complaint I had was that they didn’t show the abuse his girlfriend received on her side. True, she never mentions Bundy hitting her in her book and of course he didn’t kill her-but he abused her in other ways.

I wished that had shown a little more of how he treated her as it also explains why she called in with his name. Like all victims, she had that moment when she felt something wasn’t right, clarity, but the police didn’t take her seriously.

While it was an interesting view and the acting was fantastic I preferred The Stranger Beside Me. I think that film was more equal in its depiction-showing the charming, kind, attractive qualities-but also the dark side. I think they could have been a bit harsher in the depiction of Ted Bundy, showing more of his dark side-but otherwise it was an interesting film and very informative.

For more on Ted Bundy, go to How Well Do We Ever Really Know People?: The Stranger Beside Me (2003)

For more films based on a true story, go to I Don’t Understand, I Just Wanna Be Your Friend!: Death of a Cheerleader (1994)

For more Lily Collins, go to You’re Mother is a Shadowhunter…Like You: The Mortal Instruments, City of Bones (2013)

For more serial killers, go to How Much Do You Really Know About Him?: The Stepfather (2009)

A Spy Ring, A Killer Virus, and a Body Double Trying to Steal Carolina’s Life: High Seas Season Three (2020)

So last year my friend and I started watching Alta Mar/High Seas after watching the trailer as it looked really good. We were both thoroughly pleased as it was AMAZING and we couldn’t stop until we finished it.

The story is of two sisters, Eva and Carolina Villanueve. They lost their father, their home country of Spain was greatly changed because of WWII, and both ladies are looking for something new. Carolina had been running the family business, but decided to sell the company and is planning to marry Fernando Fábregas (owner of the ocean liner the Barbara de Braganza). Her sister Eva doesn’t like the changes Carolina is making but is still supporting her. She is also traveling on the Barbara de Braganza to Brazil to meet with a publisher interested in her book.

On our way!

They are on their way to the ship’s dock and hit a woman, a woman running away from an abusive man with powerful connections. Eva takes pity on her, ignores Carolina, and sneaks her aboard as a stowaway. However, this woman is not who she says she is and the sisters are in for quite the journey.

Someone is murdered on the ship, and it turns out their uncle Pedro and family friend Dr. Rojas have some secret they are keeping from the girls, their stowaway vanishes, someone they thought was dead is alive, and more. All this while they are on a ship in the middle of the ocean-you can see how it makes for one fantastic season.

While the first season was amazing, the second was horrible. First Mate Nicolás and Eva have fallen in love and tons of fangirls were ecstatic, but in season 2 they broke them up as Nicolás’ wife turned out to be alive.

Carolina found out that her husband was going to run off before the wedding, but his girlfriend disappeared-murdered. So yeah, their marriage isn’t going that great. And it turned out that Francesca their surrogate mother and housekeeper murdered Rosa Marin.

Veronica broke up with Sebastian, he lost all his money [although they say that’s not why they broke up], and she got with Dimas (he deserves better).

Let’s see…what else happened? Oh yes, Clara committed suicide as she couldn’t handle her rape, killing her rapist (it was in self-defense), and the rapist’s wife/co-killer going after her boyfriend.

So…yeah I hated Season 3, not as much as Season 2 as it did have one amazing storyline. But it was cut short and just not good as a whole.

***Spoilers***

So  we start off with the series with Coronavirus type disease floating in the ocean-weird choice.

What??

So Eva has had her book published and goes into a bookstore to look at it, so happy and pleased! There she is approached by a man going by “Fabio” who is a spy and needs to get on the ship and look at the passports as they are searching for a scientist or his helper who created a killer virus. She agrees, although I don’t know why she would after all that she and her sister have been through, you think they would be the most least trusting people on the planet. Wouldn’t you? I mean the first girl was a crazy lady after gold, the second was a fake psychic trying to drive her sister crazy, plus both their father and surrogate mother were crazy and killed people.

She and Carolina should be like how Sydney was at the beginning of Scream 3 not wanting to befriend or trust anyone.

I don’t trust her.

They prepare to be off.

Let’s go!

Meanwhile in the ship we have Nicolás who is there with his wife Chantel. I tried to hate her but she was tortured in the concentration camps, so….yeah I can’t. Nicolás actually is hardly in this as the other ship’s captain disappears. Nicolás is still first mate, although I don’t know why they let the previous captain keep his job when he was going crazy in the previous seasons, but anyway-so he is set to take care of that ship and is in the first episode, a little in the middle, and then just in the end. What the heck? Why wasn’t he in this.

I watch for Nicolás and Eva, not Eva and Fabio. 

Ugh…

So Pierre (Clara’s former fiance) is moved up to first mate.

So this other ship belongs to Carolina. She put her half of the fortune from selling her father’s company into her own ships. She is still married to Fernando but is freezing him out. I love it as Fernando actually treats her good and tries anything he can to get her to warm up and she is just an Ice Queen. You deserve it Fernando.

So Fabio and his supervising agent come, and they can’t tell anything from the passports. The other agent recognizes someone on the boat and dies-they don’t know who the person is, and now Fabio is stuck on the ship with Eva. He’s supposed to be her love interest I guess, but I don’t like him. Ugh, Fabio get out.

So Carolina has the most interesting storyline. So there is another group interested in the virus-the ship’s new doctor, Dr. Ayala, (we had to replace the murdering one from Season 1 +2), is traveling with a friend of their Uncle Pedro, Carmen. Carmen is taking the trip with her very sick and injured daughter Diana. She’s covered in bandages so we can’t see her. You know what that means-she’s not sick but just disguising herself.

Hmm…

I’m right of course as it turns out she has had surgery to look just like Carolina. Alejandra Onieva is a fantastic actress in her movements and her manner as she goes from street tough Diana to classy Carolina. The whole reason behind her appearance is to befriend Eva and get information out of her.

Diana does what she is told, but she also likes Carolina’s life. She likes the money, the clothes, the husband, etc. Fernando is enthused to have his wife want to be with him, although he feels uncertain about. Whenever he poses a question Diana distracts him. One day he finds a mole on her shoulder that he was 100% sure she didn’t have, but then…like always-she convinces him to focus on other things.

From The Great Gatsby

So Diana continues with her job, taking anything Eva shares and working against her and Fabio. However, she wants to change the terms-she wants Carolina’s life. The doctor doesn’t care, but Carmen is starting to have second thoughts.

Eva notices things are weird too as Carolina has seemed to forget everything that happened in the previous cruise. However, the drugs on the real Carolina have rubbed off a bit that she tries to communicate with Veronique, who’s been assigned as “Diana’s” special nurse. Veronique worries about “Diana” as she seems scared of her mother and the doctor. One day she is really troubled that she returns with help and when she comes back with help, they can’t find “Diana”, they go searching and finds Carolina/Diana trying to kill her…Carolina/Diana?  Who is the real Carolina, Eva has to figure it out, you know after she gets over the shock of seeing two of her sister.

Where is going on?

And I liked Fernando in this, which surprised me as I hated him the last two seasons. He was really trying to make things right with his wife. When he sees the real Carolina and how they had been drugging her.m, he is so upset and worried for her. That was cute.

So yeah, the Carolina and Diana storyline was the best as it sucked me in right away and never let go.

I just had to know what was going to happen next!

So they are after the virus, meanwhile Pierre has made the captain think he is crazy, and has taken over the ship with a plan made with the new first mate. You see-Pierre wanted to ruin Natalia Fábregas and teamed up with the first mate to destroy the company, but it turns out they are terrorists with the virus and planning to unleash it on the ship. They give it to Carolina, but it turns out it was really given to Diana instead.

Hmm…

Nicolas comes and turns everything on the ship right, as Pierre and his people had taken over and mutined. It’s like really fast, snap that’s over.

Well…

Dr. Ayala turns out to be the evil torturous doctor from the concentration camps that hurt Chantel, but they need him as they need a doctor to make an antidote. And surprise, surprise he does in like no time at all from the blood of maid Alex, who is the creator of the virus and had already taken the antidote. And not only is he able to an antidote with the few supplies they had around on the ship, but he creates enough to save everyone onboard. But that doesn’t save them as Mexico bombs the ship as they can’t stand having the people come in and possibly spread the virus. Like why wouldn’t they contact them first.

Eva and Nicholas rush together, but he is stabbed by Alex who survives all the blood being drawn from her, which is literally impossible.

There is no way. I have been with friends who had a little blood drawn and they couldn’t handle driving, let alone running and stabbing someone.

And don’t get me started on Nicolás’ death. First of all I am angry and appalled as I loved Nicolás and wanted him and Eva to somehow be reunited. And secondly I am extremely angry that is all they give us. To be honest if that’s all they were going to do, why didn’t they just not have him come back? He could have told Eva he loves her but as his wife is alive he is taking a job on another ship or he could have written a letter or telegram? And who’s great idea was it to write Fabio? He was boring and we knew nothing about him, and there was zero chemistry. I was extremely disappointed and heartbroken.

The ship goes down destroyed, just like my hopes and dreams of another seeason to love.

For more on High Seas, go to A Psychic Arrives and a Ghost Haunts the Ship: High Seas Season Two (2019)

For more spy stories, go to Murder, False Imprisonment, Nuclear Bombs, and Nazi Spies: Bon Voyage (2003)

One Day You’ll See Something You Shouldn’t: Rear Window (1954)

One day you’ll see something you shouldn’t

 

I have always wanted my birthday to be in October.

I love fall, the colors, the weather, Halloween. Even as a child I just adored the holiday and the classic monster movies.

Even though October will always be my favorite month, I do love one thing about May. I share the same birthday as my favorite actor-Jimmy Stewart.

It’s time for the annual Alfred Hitchcock film.

And as seen from the above poster, I am going to share one of my favorite of Jimmy Stewart Alfred Hitchcock movies. Rear Window is such a great film because it is so relatable. Who hasn’t glanced in a neighbor’s window when passing? Who hasn’t people watched when bored? I know, I have. In fact, one of the reasons I keep my blinds closed and curtains drawn is that I hate the idea of people watching me.

It’s a great setup and one that has since been copied over and over again, so let’s start with the original classic.

We start looking at a window who’s blinds are slowly coming up as we see all the cast names. Then out the window a little cat, people on their balconies, birds, milkman, a man shaving, neighbors across the way sleeping outside in the open air, a beautiful dancer girl stretching and making breakfast.

This movie was shot on set and included thirty-one apartments, of which twelve were fully furnished. The actors spent all their time in the apartments as many had running water, etc.

While shooting, Alfred Hitchcock worked only through Jeff’s “apartment”, everything is filmed from those set of windows to make it seem as if Jeff was watching. The actors and actresses in other apartments wore flesh-colored earpieces so that he could radio his directions to them.

We then go to Jimmy Stewart, L.B. “Jeff” Jefferies, who’s leg is in a cast, a broken and a mangled camera on the counter and all his pictures-bomb, car crash, and a negative of a woman, the actual picture gracing the cover of a magazine. I love how Alfred Hitchcock just shows us-we see he was an important photographer and the car crash is what caused the accident.

It has been six weeks since he had his leg in the cast, he has just one more week left. His editor called him because he wanted him to go on an assignment, but he can’t as he still has a cast. Jeff is angry, bored, grumpy, and hates everything.

He’s watching his neighbor across the way, a husband and wife who are arguing as he talks to his boss. He’s thinking of getting married because he’s so bored, but has second thoughts as the neighbors do not have a good relationship, the two always yelling. Afterwards, the man goes out to the garden.

Death Comes to Pemberley

In comes Stella, Thelma Ritter. She’s Jeff’s nurse and plays this role as she does every role-sassy. Stella insists that she can sense trouble and she says that she senses it in the apartment, that Jeff will see something he shouldn’t and end up in a courthouse surrounded by lawyers…

Hmm…

Jeff complains that trouble is on the horizon with Lisa Freemont (Grace Kelly), she wants them to get married but he doesn’t. She’s too perfect-beautiful, smart, talented, rich, park avenue girl, etc. She’s an uptown girl and he’s a downtown man. He doesn’t see how it will work, as he would be better with someone ordinary and regular.

Or plot!

Stella thinks he’s being dumb and should just be happy to be with Lisa. I love Stella-she’s just says what she wants and doesn’t think about it. Jeff over thinks except when he takes his pictures.

Jeff looks out at his neighbors and sees a new couple that have just been married. Alfred Hitchcock doesn’t tell you these things but shows them in the way they act, the husband taking the girl out and carrying her over the threshold so you know they are married. And then they close the blinds down

It’s night and we see Jeff sleeping ad kissing the beautiful Grace Kelly, it isn’t a dream though as that’s his girlfriend Lisa Freemont. She’s in a gorgeous dress and we see the full effect as she turns the lights on. She helped choose her own clothes and did it perfectly.

Lisa: A steal at $1,100.

Jeff: Eleven hundred? They ought to list that dress on the stock exchange.

She is gorgeously attired, as usual, but even more so as she wants to celebrate his final week in a cast. She got dinner from 21 to go-food and wine. It’s funny because that was novel then (Lisa doing it because she paid quite a bit and is an “important client”), but now every restaurant has a service like that.

Lisa shares her day-clothes, lunch, drinks, breakfast, money, money, money money. I can see why Jeff doesn’t think they will work, I’m totally with him. They seem to have very little in common. You can see why she cares for him though, he’s very different and treats her different from probably the other men in her life. I wonder how they met…oh yes-the magazine earlier with the picture of the woman was a fashion one.

Jeff looks out the window and sees a woman all dressed up and acting as if she is on a date-but she’s alone. Aw…it makes me wonder-do you think she is a widow and misses being in a relationship so she reenacts it, or do you think she’s just alone? A widow makes more sense to me, or even if it is her boyfriend that died.

They look at Miss Torso (the ballerina) she’s beautiful and has a lot of men over-Jeff thinks she’s happy, but Lisa isn’t convinced.

Jeff: She’s like a queen bee with her pick of the drones.

Lisa: I’d say she’s doing a woman’s hardest job: juggling wolves.

Jeff looks at the apartment where the husband and wife fight a lot. She’s always sick in bed, but strangely today the husband made her food and seems to be taking more care. He’s on the phone we see him in the window in one room and she in the other, she gets out of bed and is yelling-upset. They go into the other room and she is freaking out crying, laughing, hmmmm.

Hmm…

Another apartment a man is trying to compose something, Lisa loves the music. Lisa tries to build the romantic mood, but Jeff is just shooting her down. I get he’s trying to get her to leave him, break it off, but its really rude. Jeff then tries to break it off, but Lisa says no.

Lisa is a bit of a jerk in the relationship too, she goes on and on because she’s angry and won’t let Jeff. try and share his thoughts. He tries to get her to see how different they are, and I like this. She’s in obvious denial about his life and thinks if he can talk over here she will listen. This feels so real-she loves him and wants to be with him and doesn’t want to give it up.

Awwww. Eventually, Lisa’s had enough. She’s hurt, puts on her gloves and pashima, and leaves-good-bye. Now that he hears the finality in her voice he doesn’t want her to leave. Lisa hears it, and reneges. She’ll be back tomorrow night.

Jeff: When am I going to see you again?

Lisa: [angry] Not for a long time…[softeningat least not until tomorrow night.

We see Jeff thinking. That’s what he wanted, good-bye? Right?

That night he hears a scream and a crash. He wakes up later to rain and sees the couple who sleep outside hurrying in. But then the couple earlier-the man and wife who were fighting, he leaves with suitcases. He’s gone for a while and returns with the suitcase. Then the man goes out again with the suitcase, in the rain…Weird.

Hmm…

Why would he do that tonight of all nights, and in the rain? And why twice?

Hmmm…

Jeff tries to stay up, he looks a the apartment, all the blinds are down and no sign of the wife. Miss Torso is back, screaming at someone on the other side of the door-upset.  Her date looked like he was trying to push his way in.

Ugh…

The man comes back with the suitcase. It’s very odd, very odd. And later in the morning he is at it again, but it looks like a woman is with him?

Hmm…

The next day Jeff tells Stella about seeing him going out with his salescase at 3 in the morning. Stella laughs it off-and comes up with explanations, but i don’t think so. That’s highly suspicious.

Hmm…

They watch the salesman, but Jeff makes them scoot back so the Salesman can’t see them, and I love the transition from light to darkness.They notice that the salesman is looking at the dog who was digging around where the salesman buried something. He then notices the salesman cleaning out his sample case and putting all the samples back in. Then what did he have in their before? Jeff scoots back so his head in shadow and watches him with the binoculars, changing them out for his telephoto lens.

The salesman is wrapping up a butcher knife and small saw in newspaper and sleeping on the couch. Why isn’t he going in his bedroom?

Hmm…?

That night the dog is again digging in that spot, but is taken inside by his owner. You know I like that they show these scenes only in the morning and night, as during the day they are gone working. I never noticed that before.

Jeff shares his suspicion of the neighbor with Lisa, but Lisa isn’t interested she wants to continue to kiss. The Salesman hasn’t gone in the room where is wife is all day and he didn’t go to work that day.

Jeff: I’ve seen bickering and family quarrels and mysterious trips at night, and knives and saws and ropes, and now since last evening, not a sign of the wife. How do you explain that?

Lisa: Maybe she died.

Jeff: Where’s the doctor? Where’s the undertaker?

Jeff thinks that he must have killed her and cut the body up. He’s been gone for a long time but comes back and finally goes in the room with rope. I’m totally with Jeff, it’s weird that she’s an invalid in need of constant care, but he hasn’t gone in there until now. Lisa thinks he is being crazy and tries to reason him out of it.

But then Lisa looks and she starts thinking too. They see that he has a suitcase tied up and the mattress all rolled up. Lisa starts thinking about what he says and then asks him to start at the beginning.

Lisa: Tell me exactly what you saw and what you think it means.

This is really cute as they finally have something in common. Lisa goes to do the legwork and finds out that they are Mr. & Mrs. Lars Thorwald. It’s so cute they are going to investigate this “crime”.

Time to get on the case!

Jeff calls his friend Detective Doyle (Wendell Corey), but he’s not interested. He is finally convinced to come over and talk later when he has some free time.

Ugh! We need you now!

Now Stella is all into it and she’s also trying to help solve it. She’s convinced that Thorwald did it in the bathtub. Men come into Thorwald’s apartment and cart the trunk away, Stella runs off to investigate the name of the freight truck, I love how they are so into it.

From Midsomer Murders

Detective Doyle isn’t convinced about there having been a murder. He says all the same things Lisa did, it’s too obvious to do it the way Jeff is saying. He says that he won’t do an “official report” but will poke around a bit and heads out. Not helpful at all, but Jeff is distracted when he sees the dog digging in the spot Thorwald buried something again. Hmm…what is in there?

Hmmm…

Jeff does see his friend talking to the landlord. It turns out Thorwald signed a 6 months lease (completed 5.5 months), he and the wife “left” at 6 am, they aren’t close to any neighbors, he doesn’t drunk, is the perfect renter, etc. Jeff asks who said they left at 6 am, the landlord said that Thorwald told him that he put his wife on a train.

Hmm…

Jeff tries to get him to investigate and search the apartment, but he tries to explain to Jeff he can’t do that. Oh, Jeff-he has to have a search warrant. Detective Doyle decides to leave, but shares a post card with Jeff that was in Mr. Lars box-it is from his wife saying that she is with her sister.

Jeff is disappointed but doesn’t give up. It just doesn’t jell with him.

I don’t trust Thorwald.

Jeff uses his telephoto lens to watch  different people. Miss Lonelyhearts, the woman with no date is getting ready, but drinking a bit. Quite a bit. She leaves that night.

The composer is having  party with pretty ladies. Miss Torso is practicing. Miss Lonelyhearts goes across the street to the diner and then Thorwald comes into view. He just looks mean and like a murderer The glasses gives his eyes a squinty look, plus the way he walks-creepy. A great actor, he does so much in just his movements.

Alfred Hitchcock supposedly hired Raymond Burr to play Lars Thorwald because he could be easily made to look like his old producer David O. Selznick, who Hitchcock hated for interfering.

Jeff picks up his phone and calls the Detective’s home. He asks his wife to send him over if she hears from him, LOL before cellphones. Thorwald has his wife’s purse-weird as wouldn’t she take that with her. He’s on the phone long distance as he goes through the bag, all full of jewelry. Why wouldn’t she take her jewelry-necklaces, and rings. Most women who wear jewelry would. Hmm… He hides the purse with everything under his coat and jacket on the bed.

Hmmm…

Lisa comes over and Jeff points Lars out sharing everything. She finds it to be very telling that he asked someone for an opinion on his wife’s jewelry-someone not his wife. Lisa shares that she has been thinking about this all day. A woman has a favorite handbag, one she uses before the others-if she were to go on a trip, she wouldn’t leave it behind. She also points out that a woman doesn’t throw her jewelry in her purse where it would get twisted up. Lisa thinks the woman wasn’t Mrs. Thorwald, but just a woman-the soon to be Mrs. Thorwald.

Oh, wow…

Now they have something in common  they have grown closer together. Lisa plans to stay all night, and Lisa shows that she can live out of one suitcase, she put all her stiff in n ovenight case the size of a medium handbag. The dialogue is cute as well. She says in all detective literature you need a girl friday to help save the day. She’s not wrong.

Detective Doyle comes over sees the suitcase and hears Lisa and uses his detective skills to put it together. He comes in and looks at the room, and it is clear that he is hooked as well, not convinced but intrigued. Detective Doyle shares that Thorwald is not a murderer. He can’t explain everything , but the railroad station-ticket was bought, wife delivered, etc. Lisa tries to argue with him, but Detective Doyle is against women’s logic. He found the trunk and it was full of the wife’s clothes. That was weird-Jeff questions it, but Doyle shrugs off that she probably left him.

Such a man!

I love the look of disgust Lisa gives the detective, your misyoginy is not welcome here, she walks over and stands by Jeff-Doyle geting the hint to leave. Boom.

Miss Lonelyhearts brought a man home with her, hmm. He grabs her, and she is not interested. She slaps him ad throws him out. She falls down crying. Aww,

Jeff starts wondering if what he is doing is wrong. Lisa lets the blinds down as she wants to be his sole focus.

Lisa changes her clothes, but is interrupted by a scream. The woman with the dog is freaking out because her dog is dead-strangled, neck broken.

Miss Lonelyhearts tucks the little dog carefully in the basket. His owner cries and yells at them all for being horrible neighbors.

Woman on Fire Escape: [the woman’s dog has just been killed from a broken neck; screaming in distraught at the other neighbors] WHICH ONE OF YOU DID IT? WHICH ONE OF YOU KILLED MY DOG? You don’t know the meaning of the word ‘neighbors’! Neighbors like each other, speak to each other, care if somebody lives or dies! BUT NONE OF YOU DO!

Jeff sees it and knows he is right-Thorwald murdered his wife and this dog. In the whole courtyard one person wasn’t surprised and didn’t come to the window like the others did-Thorwald.

They see Thorwald cleaning the bathroom-Stella is still convinced that he killed her in the bathroom and the blood splattered. Jeff looks at the yard and notices something is not right.

He looks through old pictures and notices that the flowers are shorter-he buried something in the garden. Lisa thinks it is the body-but Stella tells her that a full body wouldn’t fit. He buried something and the dog kept something important is in there.

Lisa: What’s he doing? Cleaning house?

Jeff: He’s washing and scrubbing down the bathroom walls.

Stella: Must’ve splattered a lot. [both Jeff and Lisa look at Stella with disgustCome on, that’s what were all thinkin’. He killed her in there, now he has to clean up those stains before he leaves.

Lisa: Stella… your choice of words!

Stella: Nobody ever invented a polite word for a killin’ yet.

Jeff: Those two yellow zinnias at the end, they’re shorter now. Now since when do flowers grow shorter over the course of two weeks? Something’s buried there.

Lisa: Mrs. Thorwald!

Stella: You haven’t spent much time around cemeteries, have you? Mr. Thorwald could hardly bury his wife’s body in plot of ground about one foot square. Unless he put her in standing on end, in which case he wouldn’t need the knives and saw.

They notice that Thorwald is getting ready to flee and need to keep him there until they get more evidence. They write a note asking “What have you done with Mrs. Thornwald’s body?”

Jeff writes the message and Lisa delivers it. I love the use of the windows, angles, etc. Alfred Hitchcock knew what he was doing. The telephoto lens, binoculars, etc.

Thornwall looks for who left the note but Lisa is faster hiding downstairs.

Stella sees Miss Lonelyhearts taking sedatives and she looks to be taking quite a bit of them. She starts talking about it with Jeff, but they are distracted with Lisa’s return as they watch him pack up the handbag. Jeff starts thinking about the jewelry-he had three rings when he was looking at them. What if it is a wedding ring?

Lisa: The last thing Mrs. Thorwald would leave behind would be her wedding ring. Stella, do you ever leave yours at home?

Stella: The only way somebody would get that would be to chop off my – finger. Let’s go down to the garden and find out what’s buried there.

Lisa: Why not? I always wanted to meet Mrs. Thorwald.

Stella and Lisa want to go digging in the garden, but Jeff is afraid for them. He decides he needs to get Thorwald out and calls him, aw before star69

He calls Thorwald and threatens him, telling him to meet him-blackmail. Thorwald insists he knows not what he is talking about, but the threat of the police sends him going. Jeff watches while the ladies head down. I love that the ladies are the ones investigating, it’s fun take, different from what you usually would see. You know like Oracle and Batman and Robin.

Stella starts digging and Jeff calls Doyle again. He isn’t home but speaks to the baby-sitter. Jeff sees Miss Lonelyhearts writing and thinks Stella was wrong about killing herself, but she could be writing a suicide note. Stella finds nothing in the garden and Lisa takes off to search the house, she climbs the fire escape and sneaks in a window in her full gown and high heels. She digs through the bag, but no jewelry.

Stella goes back to Jeff’s apartment and distracts him from watching for Thorwald as she sees Miss Lonelyhearts and tells Jeff to call the police to get her help, but then the music stops Miss Lonelyhearts from killing herself, but oh no-they forgot about Thornwald, he’s arrived home and Lisa is still in the house she tries to to hide while Jeff calls the police telling them she is being assaulting and for her to get over here ASAP.

That’s not good.

Across the way, Lisa is telling Jeff something, hiding her hand behind her back. Thorwald starts attacking her while Stella and Jeff are at a loss of what to do. Thornwald turn off the lights to do the deed, when the police luckily arrives.

They speak to Lisa while Stella and Jeff are watching.

Lisa points to her fingers, and she has a wedding ring on. Thorwald looks up-he noticed her pointing and realizes that someone must be watching.

OMG so creepy!!!

Creepy…

Jeff tries to scrap some money together to get Lisa out of jail.

Stella: How much do we need to bail Lisa from jail?

Jeff: Well, this is first offense burglary, that’s about $250. I have $127.

Stella: Lisa’s handbag. Uh… 50 cents. I got $20 or so in my purse.

Jeff: And what about the rest?

Stella: When those cops at the station see Lisa, they’ll even contribute.

Doyle calls Jeff back and Jeff tells him that Lisa is in jail. Doyle isn’t listening at first, they had been out, but after hearing about Lisa Doyle’s listening.

Jeff looks up and notices that Thorwald isn’t in his apartment, The phone rings and he thinks it is Doyle but no one answers….his face says it all-Thorwald.

That’s not good.

And Jeff has a broken leg!!!!

And an unlocked door!

Jef turns and waits, aaahhhh I love this and hate this-the waiting, just waiting, waiting. You know he’s coming but when?

Jeff looks around for a weapon but has nothing. He can’t even stand to hide or get something. All he has is his camera and flash cubes.

The room is dark and we see nothing, but hear the foosteps until he charges in, the light on his glasses it is soo creepy.

Here he comes, ahhhh.

Creepy voice.

Creepy…

Jeff does all he can and takes his pictures, stunning Thorwald. Now those old flashcubes are not like today’s flash. Today’s flash hurts but those were way more intense. Thorwald tries to strangle him while the police and everyone is across the street. They hear Jeff scream and Thorwald tries to throw Jeff out the window. He’s hanging on by a thread but thankfully the other neighbors hear and call out, the police running, He falls out the window but the fall is partially broken by the police.

Thorwalds confesses, his wife was dumped in the east river. Stella asks about the garden and it turns out something was buried in the garden but he took it out and put it in a hatbox. What do you think it is? A head? teeth? The saw? The knife?

Hmmm…

So we get to see what happens to the rest of the neighbors. Miss Lonelyhearts got with the composer. The couple who sleeps outside has a new dog. Miss Torso has her love return, a military guy. The newlyweds are arguing as the husband quit his job. And then we see Jeff, who has two broken legs as the result of his adventures.

Lisa is in a shirt and loafers and reading a book, Behind the Himalayas, although after Jeff sleeps-back to Bazaar. Trying to show Jeff she can live in his world.

At the end of the film there is a special thank you to Georgine Darcy? Of course you know where my mind goes, it sounds very similar to Georgiana Darcy.

I looked it up and that’s Miss Torso. I wonder if her parents were Jane Austen fans. Let’s do some research…

I don’t see anything that confirms or denies it. Oh well.

For more Rear Window, go to I Can Keep Up With You: Rear Window (1954)

For more Alfred Hitchcock, go to Last Night I Dreamt I Went to Manderley Again: Rebecca (1940)

For more Jimmy Stewart, go to With a Little Luck of the Irish: 17 More Irish Heroes

For more Grace Kelly, go to The Perfect Murder: Dial “M” for Murder (1954)

For more Raymond Burr, go to You Don’t Know Which Way to Turn, There’s No Place to Hide, Nowhere to run…: The Blue Gardenia (1953)

My First Boyfriend is a Monster!…Literally: Sleepwalkers (1992)

My first boyfriend is a monster…literally

So a few months ago my friend ad I were watching Tommy Boy and I commented that the Rob Lowe character and his mother, were not really mother and son because they were too close. She said they could be weird like the mother and son in Sleepwalkers. I wasn’t quite sure what she was talking about and then I remembered it, sort of. I couldn’t remember much, I know I saw it or part of it on TV and there were cats involved or people who turn into were-cats?

UHHHHHHHH!!!!

So when it came to pick what Stephen King film to review, our conversation popped in my head and I decided for it to be my yearly Stephen King pick. Here we go…

So we start off with the definition of Sleepwalkers:

“Sleepwalker noun. Nomadic shape-shifting creatures with human and feline origins. Vulnerable to the deadly scratch of the cat. The sleepwalker feeds upon the life force of virginal human females. Probable source of the Vampire legend.”

We then start of on a beach with police officers, I’m getting Jaws flashbacks.

A mother and son is missing, they go to the house and OMG! Cats are hung everywhere this is horrible. This is the most horrible thing I have ever seen. I know its not real but it made me cry. I can’t watch dead cats.

***SKIP***

We have the titles and Mädchen Amick is in this. Mädchen was Shelly in Twin Peaks, I’m’ a major fan of the original show. She is such a pretty lady, many of you will recognize her as Mrs. Cooper in Riverdale.

We see a lot of cat imagery from the Egyptians in this-cats, cat people, shape shifters, etc. The only thing I don’t understand is that if they turn into cats why did they kill them? Shouldn’t they love and adore cats like in Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island. That’s a great movie.

So we are in Travis, Indiana. A shirtless guy is looking at a yearbook and listening to 1950s music on a record, then he cuts his skin, weird. He cuts a “T” for Tanya Robertson (Mädchen Amick) which has a heart doodled around it.

Oh no, a cat is sniffing around a house, there is a trap, oh no! Please not the cat.

Yes, it was okay. If this film is just about cat killing I’m not going to watch it. I’m serious, I’ll just shut it off.

He dances with an older lady…who turns out to be his mom and they are so creepy. Too close, too much like lovers. Ew, ew OMG they are kissing. No wonder I blocked this movie out. Incest and killing cats, this is the worst movie ever.

***SKIP***

Tanya is working late at the movies, dancing out to The Condors “Do You Love Me”.

Tanya is interrupted by Charles Brady (Brian Krause) the creepy guy who’s sleeping with his mom. He gets popcorn and a drink and asks to give Tanya a ride home. She turns him down, good for her, but then when he is all hurt and leaving she stops him and welcomes him to town. NOOOO Tanya, run away.

Her add picks her up, but creepy Charles is watching. It is midnight and ominous music plays while the bell tolls. Let’s see what creepy thing he does…nothing. His mom does call animal control as they attract a ton of cats. You know, between this and Cat’s Eye Stephen King just seems to love hatimg cats. Like they aren’t treated as sad deaths like the dog in Secret Window. They are treated as nothing.

So Charles is jealous and wants attention from her son, ew.

The next day Charles reads a creepy gross story about Sleepwalkers. I don’y know why Tanya is into him-that story is awful, he’s creepy, and he’s not that cute.

Ugh…

Tanya says she likes it, why?

The teacher liked the story, but seems to hate Charles, creeping on him from a window. Why?

Oh, wow…

Her friends make fun of her for “just talking” to Charles and not sleeping with hum…I have to say these friends are not good. They shouldn’t be encouraging you to sleep with a total stranger! They should be more concerned for your health and mental well-being.

The worst!

Charles offers to give her and her friends a ride and they refuse to give him and Tanya time togheter. Charles thanks Tanya for her kind words and she thanks him for writing such a great piece. Gag me! Tanya, come on-have some more respect for yourself.

Tanya takes Charles into her house and her mom has gravestone rubbings framed, so cool! She also takes him to her room and shows him her pictures, He wants to see how she takes photos, and she invites him to join her tomorrow when she takes pictures.

From Clueless

Mom interrupts them, good-he’s creepy don’t get involved Tanya. Mom is very suspicious of him, even more after he says he is a gravestone rubber too. I like this mom, she grills the boy and seems to care a lot about her child. Her mom sense must be tinging as she does not like this boy. This surprised me as most parents in a horror film are either checked out or just comedic effect.

Later, the teacher pulls Charles over, weird. Why is he following him? The teacher threatens him, not letting him get out of the car. He knows Charles is lying and is confronting him, why? Why didn’t he just go to the principal? The teacher actually slams the door on Charles hand-blackmailing him not for money as he wants a “different” exchange? Was the teacher trying to get Charles to be with him? I am so confused?

And of course Charles being a monster, rips the hand of the teacher and chases him in the woods and eats him. This whole scene is so odd and weird.

In the next scene we see a deputy and he is playing with his cat. It is so cute! Clovis the attack cat.

It makes me think of that book series Boris and Lil. Lil was the Sheriff and Boris the cat her deputy. Anyways the deputy sees Charles speeding , almost running down a girl, and follows to stop him. Yeah, Charles is crazy. Too bad Tanya didn’t see that.

Clovis meows at Charles and he becomes afraid morphing to a Catperson, Werecat. So cats scare them and can see their true form? I still find this weird as you think a Cat monster would like cats. Charles also has magic that makes him and his car invisible? Why? What?

What??

Clovis still sees it, no Clovis stay in the car-don’t get hurt. I swear, if another cat dies I’m turning this movie off.

Seriously!

Clovis tries to tell Deputy Andy, but humans can’t understand cats and they drive away.

And Charles turned his car from a blue pontiac to a red mustang. How? How does werecat magic allow you to do that?

WHAT??!!

Later the deputy tries to tell the others, what he saw but he can barely make sense of it. Poor guy, can you imagine trying to tell people you saw a cat person?

Aw, Clovis has her own cute little bed in a file area. Oh my gosh, Clovis is so adorable. She is the best part of this movie. I’m only watching for you Clovis. Andy and Clovis are so adorable, the best characters in this movie.

Back to the creepy incest mom is in a nightgown and lighted candles. Ew, them kissing. This movie is so gross. Stephen King has problems.

Mom starts smacking her son because he didn’t her the girl. They need to feed ASAP. He shares about what happened with the teacher and they are now on an expedited course to get food for mom, they are running out of time. They want Tayna because she is a pure soul (virgin)

More cats come around the house, they watch the house and plot.

I like that the cats are the heroes, they see these people for what they really are and try to stop then. Often cats are bad in stories, so its nice to see them protecting.

Ew, they are together!

***SKIP***

You know this movie is just weird and gross. I’m skipping to Clovis.

So Tonya and Charles on their date, he woges and attacks Tanya, she got away from him and runs screaming for help-right to Deputy Andy. Deputy Andy puts Tanya in his car, and goes to fight Charles who attacks him. No-not Andy!

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!

Charles attacks Tanya, needing to feed and Andy shoots Charles who is fine and he kills Andy. Aw man, 20% of the characters I liked are gone (Deputy Andy, Clovis, Tanya, Tanya’s Mom, & Tanya’s Dad).

Clovis comes in and saves Tanya by jumping on Charles and that makes him fizz like Alka Seltzer. Tanya locks herself in the car an tries to use the radio. Charles gets in his pontiac and drives off. Aw, Clovis goes to Andy’s side and lays on him. What will happen to Clovis now? Who will take care of her?

There are more cats in the Brady yard, but Charles makes it through. His mom tries to heal him-you think they would just leave town and the movie could end here, but I’m guessing there is more to come. Oh no Mom wants to stay. Darn. Why? It makes more sense for them to leave as they have been “discovered”.

So annoying

Charles tries to “dim” himself-make himself invisible-but it doesn’t work.

Stephen King has a cameo as the groundkeeper for the cemetery. He is not a good actor. Just stop, please.

They question Tonya and she tries to give them the information, but it is all mixed up. Too bad Andy died.

They photograph Tonya, and this is so awful. Victim support is so important-the way they treat her-there are much kinder ways. She has already been through something extremely traumatic.

Poor Tonya “He was very Charming”. We’ve all been there. Boys are the worst.

Tonya hears Clovis and asks for her, as she saved her life, the police promise to bring her later. The police are headed to the house and the mom changes the car to be invisible. How do they have such powers I don’t know. If they can do that, then why don’t they make themselves invisible and sneak on people? This doesn’t make any sense.

Mom makes them invisible as the police storm in and find it “empty”, why? This is dumb, I’ll try not to waste any further brain cells on it.

It’s unimportant.

Ugh the State Trooper is such a misogynist-Captain Soames. He complain about having to watch Tonya, as she just has an overactive imagination and needs a spanking, something he would like to do. Now I don’t know what the age of consent is in Indiana but shouldn’t the commanding officer fire him?

Ugh…

Tonya goes home and takes a bath, her parents are nervous and freaking out. Mom is overcooking, dad worried about her being alone, mom trying to hold it together, both trying to be understanding but not knowing what to do-and Tonya trying desperately to get clean.

I really like the parents in this. These two are some of the best parents in film and TV, they care about their child and react realistically. Especially a situation like this when they are trying to support her but also are freaking out themselves.

Wow!

Police outside are keeping watch with one officer inside. They don’t do a good job as Ma Brady kills them.

The bell rings-no don’t go out dad. Stay alive! Yes you guessed it-Ma Brady.

Ugh!

I love the dad’s reaction as he is angry and about to give Ma Brady a few words to give to Charles about his sorry apology, but Ma Brady takes him out and the officer.

Mom comes running and Ma Brady attacks her too. She wants her to give up their daughter, but she refuses and when she hears that Charles is dying she’s glad-she then picks up a bat to try and take Ma Brady out, but Ma Brady is too strong.

Again, I love the way they did these parents-actual parents.

Tonya is running downstairs and Ma Brady wants her. More police come, but Ma Brady just goes monster on them. Meanwhile Ma Brady has knocked Tonya out and is carrying her off.

That’s not good.

Ma Brady crashes into here house and the cats attack her.  Ma wants Tonya to get with Charles, but she won’t as he’s dead! Ma insists he isn’t and uses her powers to turn the music on. Why? Why have powers if that’s all you do? This is so weird and dumb.

So Charles isn’t dead as Ma Brady wants them to dance and kiss, even though he doesn’t have a face.

Sweet, Clovis is with the Sheriff as he storms into the house. She climbs up a tree and breaks a widow. Yes, Clovis-save the girl, be the cat that Andy believed you could be, and avenge your master!

Charles and Ma look more monster like and Charles tries to feed on Tonya, but she won’t go down easy. Clovis charges into the fray to lead the attack, all the cats start charging in jumping and attacking them-Go cats, go. Take them out.

Charles is dead, Tonya took care of him-but Ma Brady is still kicking. You know they don’t really look like cat people they look like a cross between an alien and the Creature from the Black Lagoon.

NEVER SAY DIE!

Ma throws the sheriff and Tonya runs for the car, trying to find the keys. The Sheriff throws a trap at Ma Brady, which stalls her for a second, but then she kills him too.

Poor Tonya she’s all alone but then Clovis comes back, and leads an attack of 100 cats and they take Ma Brady down. You see, this is why you should always have a cat.

Ma catches on fire and Tonya finally gets the key in and backs away. Poor Tonya, she will never have a normal life. Clovis jumps in the car and Tonya hugs her tight. Aw, I hope Tonya keeps Clovis and takes care of her.

One thing for sure, Tonya will always have a cat.

Yeah, I didn’t like this movie at all except Clovis. She’s the best cat ever!

For more Stephen King, go to I’m Not Into Politics. I’m Into Survival: The Running Man (1987)

For more Werecats, go to No Mere Mortal Can Resist the Evil of the Thriller: Thriller (1983)

For more cats, go to Don’t Go in There! You Don’t Have to Die! No One Has to Die at 30! You Could Live! LIVE!: Logan’s Run (1976)

It’s a Weird Case from the Start. A Case With a Hole in the Center: Knives Out (2019)

Hey everybody, for this year we are doing something special: Sleuthing Sundays. Each Sunday I’ll post a film with a super sleuth! Our third film is:

It’s a weird case from the start. A case with a hole in the center. A doughnut.

So this was the first post I wrote for Horrorfest IX. I wrote it waaay back in January 2020, ah a more simpler time, when I was trying to get ahead. I usually try to do at list one post a month so I have nine ready when October rolls around to give me a little extra time in the month.

So back in January 2020, my friend called me up about wanting to hang out and I agreed. Last time we went to her place so I wanted to reciprocate with mine, but I had been working on Valentine’s Cards and had paper everywhere and a mess.

I’m a mess

To hide this I suggested going to the movies, (remember when we could do that?), and she agreed saying she had wanted to see Knives Out.

I heartily agreed as I love mysteries and the trailer made me think of those old Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple films from the ’70s.

Mystery, you say?

We went and saw it and I really enjoyed it, although there was one thing I did not like. The whole film from the text, color choices, decor, costumes, hairstyles (talking about you detectives with those sideburns) etc-evoked a late 1970s vibe to it, but it was set in modern times. It was extremely jarring to be watching and having all your senses set you in 1970 and then someone whips out an iPhone or talks about instagram. I think it would have been a bit better if they had just set it in the 1970s, but that’s just me.

I also didn’t like the vomit parts, but other than that I really enjoyed this film and have already seen it three times this year.

I also like how his had no romantic pair or love angle. It was refreshing to have the main characters just be about something else, than to have them get together in the end.

So the film starts off with a big birthday party for the family patriarch, Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer). He invited his whole family and his nurse, but the next day is found dead-throat slashed.

Lt. Elliot (Lakeith Stanfield) and Trooper Wagner (Noah Segan) are called on the scene and believe it to be suicide, (the Trooper is one of my favorite characters as he fanboys over all the Thrombey books), but then world renowned private investigator, Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) appears saying that he was delivered a note and cash, so he is here to investigate.

Time to get on the case!

Each person is taken aside and questioned, all having a motive-but which one did it?

Hmmm…

Linda Drysdale (Jamie Lee Curtis) is the eldest daughter and built a real estate company from the ground up (not really as she got the money from her dad). She was told that she would no longer receive any money and neither would her spendthrift son, Ransom (Chris Evans). She says she doesn’t care about herself or her son being cutoff, but is she lying? Could she kill him to protect her young?

Hmm…?

Richard Drysdale (Don Johnson), Linda’s husband is cheating on her and Harlan caught him. If Linda divorces him, he’ll have nothing (he signed a prenup). Could he have killed him to keep it a secret?

Hmm…

Hugh Ransom Drysdale (Chris Evans) was told by his grandfather that night that he was to be written out of th will. The two argued and he didn’t return until the will was read. Did he secretly return and kill him to protect his inheritance?

Hmm…from Saboteur

Joni Thrombey (Toni Collette) is the widow of Harlan’s middle son. She is famous on instagram and is a lifestyle guru. She has the followers, but still relies on Harlan to meet the cost of bills and day to day living. She’s been cheating him by getting twice as much money having the accountants give her her daughter’s college fees, while Harlan also pays straight to the school. He told Joni he was cutting her and Meg off. Did Joni kill him to keep the money?

Hmm…

Megan “Meg” Thrombey (Katherine Langford) found out about hr college fund being cut off. She also left and when she returned was seen to go straight to her bedroom. Could she had killed him so she could continue her schooling?

Hmmm…

Walter “Walt” Thrombey (Michael Shannon) is the youngest brother and in charge of his father’s publishing company. He is fired from the company as Harlan wants his son to be free to be his own person. Did he kill him to keep control and have the money? (This out of all the people I actually feel bad for. Where is he going to get a job now? How is he going to start over at his age?)

But P.I. Benoit Blanc believes that something is missing. He continues to search and forces nurse, Marta Cabrera, to join him on his investigations…but Marta ended up killing him when she switched his accidentally gave him the wrong medication. Harlan kills himself to protect her. So she is helping Blanc solve the murder she committed…oh no.

That’s not good.

I also love the white sweater that Ransom wears. It makes me think of the one Rod Taylor wears in The Birds.

 

The best part of the film, besides Trooper Wagner, was Craig’s character-Private Detective Benoit Blanc.

I could happily watch film after film of his character. I hope they make a sequel with him.

I liked the plot-but I did figure out the ending. Things just didn’t sit right with me of what they showed. I was whispering to me friend, when Blanc said the doughnut line and I was like, yes! That’s what I was thinking!!

Benoit Blanc: I spoke in the car about the hole at the center of this doughnut. And yes, what you and Harlan did that fateful night seems at first glance to fill that hole perfectly. A doughnut hole in the doughnut’s hole. But we must look a little closer. And when we do, we see that the doughnut hole has a hole in its center – it is not a doughnut hole at all but a smaller doughnut with its own hole, and our doughnut is not whole at all!

But it was great, and every time you watch it there is more that you pick up on. Like the symbolism of Go and the way Marta plays it becoming important later. There is more, so if you haven’t watched it yet-you should.

For more detectives, go to This Village is Full of Strange People: Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple, Endless Night (2013)

For more Chris Evans, go to We’re Mad Scientists. We’re Monsters: Avengers, Age of Ultron (2015)

For more Jamie Lee Curtis, go to There’s Something in the Fog!: The Fog (1980)

For more Michael Shannon, go to Do You Ever Feel Like Your Life Has Turned into Something You Never Intended?: Nocturnal Animals (2016)

For more Christopher Plummer, go to Dracula. Not Myth, Nor Ravings of a Mad Irish Novelist, Oh No, He’s Real: Dracula 2000 (2000)