WEIRD HORIZON FOR THE WEEK OF 12/2/2011

A look at what’s weird in theaters, on hot-off-the-presses DVDs, and on more distant horizons…

Trailers of new release movies are generally available on the official site links.

IN THEATERS (LIMITED RELEASE):

Sleeping Beauty (2011):  From Australia comes this modern folktale that sounds like it has more to do with The House of Sleeping Beauties than with the classic fairy tale.  We like writer/director Julia Leigh’s quote: “I’m interested in Wonder Cinema…”  On the other hand, we don’t like the reviewers’ quotes, like David Rooney’s “Soporific in every sense.”  Not to be confused with ‘s 2010 The Sleeping BeautySleeping Beauty official site.

NEW ON DVD:

Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2010):  Read our capsule review.  This documentary on the world’s oldest cave paintings may not be per se weird, but fans of , and of beauty, may find it interesting. Buy Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2010).

Chillerama (2011): A horror/comedy anthology built around the conceit of a drive-in owner screening four outrageous and obscure movies on the theater’s last night of operation.  The best fake movie title is The Diary of Anne Frankenstein.  Billing itself as “the ultimate midnight movie,” but it looks geared to the crowd. Buy Chillerama (2011).

The Flying Guillotine (1975):  Not as famous or notable as its crazed sequel Master of the Flying Guillotine (which is languishing in our reader-suggested review queue), the original tells the story of how the titular distance-decapitation weapon was discovered.  The Shaw Brothers produced four movies in the Flying Guillotine series (with Master being the most remembered).  Buy The Flying Guillotine (1975).

Flying Guillotine 2 (1978): Of the four Shaw Brothers movies with Flying Guillotine in the title, this one (also known as Palace Carnage) is the last chronologically, yet it is the direct sequel to the first. To make things even more confusing, Master, the second movie in the series, was a direct sequel to One Armed Boxer, an otherwise unrelated movie. Buy Flying Guillotine 2 (1978).

Vampires (2010): Belgian mockumentary focusing on the domestic life of a family of vampires, including a rebellious teenage daughter who wants to become human.  Offbeat, at least. Buy Vampires (2010).

Zebraman 2: Attack on Zebra City (2010):  This sequel sees Zebraman split into good (white, male) and evil (black, female) versions.  We never even knew there was a sequel to the crazy original by weird favorite Takashi Miike; we admit we’ll be a bit disappointed if Zebranurse fails to make an appearance. Buy Zebraman 2: Attack on Zebra City (2010) [Blu-ray/DVD Combo].

NEW ON BLU-RAY:

Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2010): See description in DVD above. This 2-disc set contains the 3D Blu-ray (which is your only chance to see the film in three dimensions, as intended) as well as a standard disc. Buy Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2011) [Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray Combo] .

Chillerama (2011): See description in DVD above. Buy Chillerama (2011) [Blu-ray].

Horror Express (1972):  Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing are a pair of archeologists fighting off a train full of zombies and a Cossack Telly Savalas in this classic that’s currently in our reader-suggested review queue.  Appearing for the first time on Blu-ray, this release also contains a DVD copy of the movie (which is available separately from several competing sources).  It’s supposedly remastered from a print discovered in Mongolia (!), but customer reports disagree on whether the visuals are much improved.   Buy Horror Express (1972) [DVD/Blu-ray Combo] .

FREE (LEGITIMATE RELEASE) MOVIES ON YOUTUBE:

American Zombie (2008):  Since we mentioned the Belgian horror mockumentary Vampire, the equal time rule suggests we must also mention this American mockumentary covering a zombie uprising in Los Angeles, from the standpoint of the misunderstood living dead.  Watch American Zombie (2008) free on YouTube.

What are you looking forward to? If you have any weird movie leads that I have overlooked, feel free to leave them in the COMMENTS section.

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