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.


The Oregonian (2011): Read our capsule review.  Calvin Reeder’s surreal horror debut finally sees a very limited release: although it will be seen in about ten cities across the country, most of those are one night only screenings.  The show begins Sept. 23 at Cinefamily in Los Angeles.  Not a great movie, in our judgement, but it’s weirdness is undeniable.  The Oregonian page at Cinemad.

Shit Year (2010):  An aging, retiring actress relives her past in an impressionistic melange.  We’re not fans of the calling-attention-to-itself title, but the trailer looks very good, and it’s nice to see Ellen Barkin again.  Opening at IFC Center in New York with a playdate in Dallas to follow, and then presumably off to DVD.  Shit Year official site.


Blue Sunshine (1978): A bad batch of LSD turns Stanford grads into bald killer zombies in this off-the-wall horror/thriller.  The product description says it’s “packed with bonus material for fans,” but doesn’t say what that material is (though one feature reportedly is an interview with director Jeff Lieberman). Buy Blue Sunshine.

Dead End Drive-In (1986): Australian kids go to the drive-in where the authorities steal their tires while the teens are making out and imprison them behind barbed wire—but at least they leave the concession stand open.  It’s a bizarre premise for a B-movie version of “Lord of the Flies” that drive-in critic Joe Bob Briggs described as “Mildly Perturbed Max Beyond Thunderdome.” This release is part of Image Entertainment’s “Midnight Madness” series. Buy Dead End Drive-In.

Nightbreed (1990): Strange Clive Barker scenario about a possible serial killer who flees to a land of monsters underneath a graveyard, featuring David Cronenberg in a rare acting role. The bad news about this release is that it’s being relegated to Warner Archive’s burn-on-demand graveyard; the death knell for any future serious release. You might consider the video-on-demand download for half the price of the DVD-R, if you can stand watching movies on your computer/I-whatever.  Buy Nightbreed.

The Strange Case of Angelica [O Estranho Caso de Angélica] (2010):  A romantic ghost story about a photographer who sees the dead when he looks through his camera, from 101-year old (!) director Manoel de Oliveira.  The disc contains a goodly number of bonus features, including de Oliveira’s first movie—a 1931 silent.  Buy The Strange Case of Angelica.

The Stuff (1985):  Read our capsule review.  This “Midnight Madness” release is a downgrade from Anchor Bay’s out-ot-print-but-widely-available version, which featured a Larry Cohen commentary track, but it’s also much cheaper (under $10 at this writing). Buy The Stuff.


Casino Royale (1967):  Not the “serious” 2006 Bond adaptation, this is an “only-in-the-1960s” experimental spy spoof made by six different directors with a once-in-a-generation cast including David Niven, Peter Sellers, Ursula Andress, Orson Welles, , William Holden, etc.  The plot does not make any sense. Buy Casino Royale (1967) [Blu-ray].

“Sophia Loren: Award Collection” [Boccaccio ’70 (1962)/Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow (1963)/ Marriage Italian Style (1964)/ Sunflower (1970)/ Vittorio D  (2009)]:  A strange collection, understandably aimed at fans of Ms. Loren (yowza!).  Boccaccio ’70 is the only one of even mild interest to weirdophiles (it’s the anthology film with one by Fellini featuring a 50-foot tall Anita Eckberg, and it is available spearately).  The fifth disc in the set isn’t a Blu-ray, but a DVD, and it doesn’t even feature Loren—it’s a recent documentary on director Vittorio De Sica! Buy “Sophia Loren: Award Collection” [Blu-ray].

The Strange Case of Angelica [O Estranho Caso de Angélica] (2010): See description in DVD above. Buy The Strange Case of Angelica [Blu-ray].


Sukiyaki Western Django (2007):  Reviews were mixed—although Andrew O’Hehir of Salon did praise it as “hilarious and uniquely weird“—but who can resist the idea of a samurai Spaghetti Western spoof directed by cult provocateur Takashi MiikeWatch Sukiyaki Western Django 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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