Illness and the viewing bender

There’s really only one good part about being sick, and that’s the part where you’re collapsed on the couch, too fatigued and dizzy to do anything useful with yourself, and therefore finally able to throw responsibility to the wind and just start chipping away at the pile of discs and files you’ve built up for years. As you start going through movie after movie, it’s actually a bit of a comfort to realize, “hey, I fucking hate almost all of these.” The pile starts shrinking at a truly wondrous rate.
The shrinking goes that much faster when said pile is the pile of Dollar-Store DVDs you bought years ago in some discount-fueled craze and the vague suspicion that its contents might be “hilarious.”

I did watch a few quality films as well, but I’ll get to those later, since they bear closer examination. But in the mean time, here are but a few of the gems I’ve attempted to sit through this week. Words cannot convey the joy I take in throwing these terribly made discs in the trash after I decide I’m done with them.

Duel of Champions (pictured)
A hastily produced dubbed Italian sword-and-sandal epic. I stopped watching when I realized that, with all the helmets and uniforms and stuff, I literally couldn’t tell one character apart from another, and couldn’t follow at all what was going on. It looked like some pretty dangerous filming, though, with flaming balls of something being pushed down hills and narrowly missing actors and their horses.

Sonny Chiba’s Dragon Princess
One of those mid-70s Sonny Chiba actioners, dubbed. I stopped watching when I realized how bad the video quality was, and that someday this film might be worth watching in an acceptable form.

A quiet and surprisingly watchable (though way not “good”) horror movie from the late 70s, involving a rich society woman who hears all sorts of ghosts, and her dickish husband who might be behind it all. It didn’t make me hurl the disc across the room.

They Came From Beyond Space
Most of the terrible and silly alien movies from the 50s and 60s came from the USA, but this one is British! That means the acting is better, forcing me to wonder how any self-respecting actor could utter some of this dialogue without cracking up. The scientist dude, who is impervious to alien mind control due to a metal plate in his skull from a recent car accident, upon finding out that mysterious meteor formation has landed nearby, immediately concludes that they’re from the MOON! He draws a little diagram, with a big circle marked “MOON.” This doodle is later deemed so important that the aliens steal it. While this was plenty amusing at first, the film is starting to bore me, so I might be done for now — I got about 40 minutes in.

You sure find a lot of drift wood looking for buried treasure, I guess.


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