Monday, January 16, 2017

The Endangered List (Case File #155)


Dack Rambo (Kenner)
Clare Beresford (Grace)
Meshach Taylor (Elijah)
Mark Bringelson (Big)
Charles Dougherty (Zig)
Diana Quijano (Radio)
Emily Kreimer (Shiela)
Orlando Sacha (Bishop)
Ramsay Ross (Lazarus)

Directed by
Augusto Tamayo

Produced by
Luis Llosa

Sally Mattison

Screenplay by
Len Jenkin
Dan Kleinman

Associate Producer
Margarita Morales Macedo

Cusi Barrio

Edited by
Augusto Tamayo
Dan Schalk

Music by
Kevin Klingler

Sound by
Edgar Lostaunau

Assistant Director
Pili Flores Guerra

Stunt Coordinator
Jose Luy

Special Makeup Effects
Thom Schouse

Concorde Pictures

Running time: 80 minutes

MPAA rating: R

WELCOME TO OBLIVION, a cheap but straightforward futuristic action movie that Luis Llosa produced in Peru for Roger Corman's Concorde Pictures, received a theatrical release in Cincinnati, San Diego, and other cities beginning in February of 1990. A screener cassette from Concorde was sent to Variety critic Lawrence Cohn at the end of that year and his negative review (below) appeared in the January 28th, 1991 issue of Daily Variety.

For whatever reason, WELCOME TO OBLIVION never made it to home video. Instead, an alternate version was constructed by editor Robert L. Goodman consisting of sequences from the original film, new scenes produced by Mike Elliott and directed by Kevin Tent -- including an appearance by Corman as the President of the United States -- and footage pulled from BATTLE BEYOND THE STARS, WARLORDS OF THE 21ST CENTURY, THE WARRIOR AND THE SORCERESS, WHEELS OF FIRE, CRIME ZONE, LORDS OF THE DEEP, and DUNE WARRIORS. Music by Terry Plumeri and Ed Tomney was also added, and the title was changed to ULTRA WARRIOR.

Daily Variety - November 16, 1992

Nearly three years after its release as WELCOME TO OBLIVION, the Frankenmovie known as ULTRA WARRIOR emerged from the bandages as a videocassette sporting new Boris Vallejo box art on December 17, 1992 from New Horizons Home Video. This version, also a no-show on DVD and Blu-ray, currently has an IMDb user rating of 1.6 out of 10.

We find it impossible to believe that WELCOME TO OBLIVION is worse than ULTRA WARRIOR. It's time for some company to put out a special edition Blu-ray with both versions and a featurette that explains why this happened.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Movie Ads of the Week: The Many Titles of CAMPER JOHN (1973)

Filmed in the summer of 1972 under the titles ONCE UPON A TRIBE and UP YOURS, PILGRIM! by director Sean MacGregor (DEVIL TIMES FIVE, NIGHTMARE COUNTY), the low-budget "Indiansploitation" action pic CAMPER JOHN stars William Smith as Camper John Allen, a Native American falsely accused of raping and murdering a white girl. Smith co-produced the film with his LAREDO co-star, Peter Brown. The cast also includes Gene Evans, Joe Flynn, Barbara Luna, R.G. Armstrong, Henry Brandon, and Arch Johnson. Cinemation Industries acquired the film for a theatrical release in 1973. The ad above is from the Iowa City, IA opening on October 2, 1974.

A month later (November 15, 1974) it played in Tucson, AZ with a different ad campaign as THE SINS OF BETTY SCHAFFER.

When the film opened in Detroit, MI on June 18, 1975, the title had been changed again, to I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE. Cinemation president Jerry Gross ripped off this title from a 1959 black-and-white French film that had been released in the U.S. by Audubon Films in 1963 (Audubon had also published a paperback of the Boris Vian source novel, J'irai cracher sur vos tombes). Gross used the title again more famously in 1980 when he re-released Meir Zarchi's notorious rape-revenge flick DAY OF THE WOMAN (1978) as I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE.

In the 1980s, the film played on TV and was released to home video as GENTLE SAVAGE.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Mystery Movie: B.A.R.F. (ca. 1981)

An unknown GROOVE TUBE-style skit comedy titled B.A.R.F. received spotty showings at drive-ins and midnight shows throughout the South in 1981 and 1982 (The ad above is from a March 20, 1981 booking in Tallahassee). According to this message board comment from someone who has seen it, B.A.R.F. is an acronym for "Bizarre Adventures in Raw Film," which leads us to suspect that this might be a re-release of Jim Bryan's BOOGIEVISION (1977). It could also be 69 MINUTES (1976), an Endangered List title that frequently played with BOOGIEVISION.

Palm Beach, FL - November 19, 1982

Jackson, MS - November 26, 1982

69 MINUTES and BOOGIEVISION in Akron, OH - May 19, 1978

Sunday, January 08, 2017

Movie Ad of the Week: LION MAN VS. THE BARBARIANS w/ KUNG FU MANIAC (1982)

The howlingly funny Turkish action-adventure flick KILIÇ ASLAN (1975), better known as LION MAN and starring Cüneyt Arkin ("Steve Arkin"), went directly to the kung fu track here in the U.S. courtesy of William Mishkin Motion Pictures. Riding the coattails of CONAN THE BARBARIAN, Chicago sub-distributor Don Buhrmester pushed the film as LION MAN VS. THE BARBARIANS for its one-theater Loop debut with the previous year's KUNG FU MANIAC on August 14, 1982.

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Mystery Movie: THE BODY (ca. 1981)

A film called THE BODY received a theatrical release by Independent Artists in 1981, and we've yet to find promotional materials, trade paper or fanzine reviews, or anything else that would indicate what the film is about, who's in it or who directed it. Apart from WEAPONS OF DEATH, STARK RAVING MAD and a re-release of THE BLACK SIX, the few Independent Artists releases we're aware of are all European films, most of which had already come out through International Cine Film Corporation under different titles: Claude Chabrol's HIGH HEELS (previously released as PLAY NOW, PAY LATER), WHEN THE SCREAMING STOPS (previously released as THE SWINGING MONSTER) and León Klimovsky’s WALK OF THE DEAD (previously released as VENGEANCE OF THE ZOMBIES). Because there's a billing block on the WEAPONS OF DEATH and STARK RAVING MAD materials but few (or no) credits on the one-sheets and ads for the company's European releases, we'll assume that THE BODY is European as well. A couple months back we showed this ad to Video Watchdog's John Charles and he made the very good suggestion that perhaps it was a reissue of Klimovsky's I HATE MY BODY, a Spanish production that received scattered playdates in the U.S. from CinAmerica Releases beginning in 1975. We'll keep that in mind until we find more information.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

The Endangered List (Case File #154)


Written, Produced, Directed
Tink Klang

Executive Producer
Warren Burke

Director of Photography
Harry Allen

Director of Sound
Fred Badiyan

A Countryman-Klang production

A National General release

MPAA rating: G

Jackson County Banner (Indiana) - September 5, 1973

Seymour, IN - September 10, 1973

Rushville, IN - September 28, 1973

Hull, IA - February 27, 1975

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

"Zombies Arouse More Jeers Than Fears" in Green Bay, WI - September 1984

A dusk-to-dawn zombie show held at the Valley Outdoor Theatre in Green Bay, WI the weekend of September 7-9, 1984 consisted of THE ZOMBIE'S RAGE (Joe D'Amato's ANTROPOPHAGUS, a.k.a. THE GRIM REAPER), WALK OF THE DEAD (LA REBELION DE LAS MUERTAS, a.k.a. VENGEANCE OF THE ZOMBIES), Ted V. Mikels' THE ASTRO ZOMBIES, REVENGE OF THE ZOMBIES (the Shaw Brothers' GOU HUN JIANG TOU, a.k.a. BLACK MAGIC 2) and THE CURSE OF THE LIVING DEAD (Jean Rollin's LES DÉMONIAQUES). The article below appeared in the Green Bay Gazette on Sunday, September 9.