The clock continues to count down to the holiday season — and the various celebrations that go with it. When that time hits, many of you will prefer to observe the spiritual side of the season. Others may favor the commercial aspect of it all. Either way, it never hurts to have some sort of gift on stand-by. And so, with that lame introduction, I give to you Part II of my “B” Movie Gift Guide: Eclectic Boogaloo.
• Penance / 2009 / Independent Media Distribution / Not Rated
With co-stars such as Tony Todd, Michael Rooker, and Jason Connery, Penance has “B” written all over it. The story involves a down-and-out single mother (Marieh Delfino) who has to resort to stripping to make ends meet. And then, as luck would have it, she winds up held captive by a real psycho. Torture porn: the Christmas gift that lasts forever.
• Evilution / 2009 / Music Video Distributors / R
In keeping with the fine tradition of the “extraterrestrial organisms possess humans” genre, Evilution involves a tenant house full of oddballs being terrorized by alien-created zombie cannibal critters. From the co-producer of Dog Soldiers. For more info, check out Greg Barbrick’s review.
• Lili And The Baobab / 2006 / Casque D’Or Films / Unrated
Straight from the artistic cinematic world of France, Lili And The Baobab tells the tale of Lili (Romane Bohringer, daughter of Richard), a freelance photographer who goes through a complex change in life in order to help a newfound friend. Compassion is the name of the game in this film by Chantal Richard. In French with English subtitles.
• The New World / 2007 / Casque D’Or Films / Not Rated
Another contribution from France, The New World is a lesbian comedy that was produced for television. Natalia Dontcheva and Vanessa Larré star as the leads, Lucie and Marion, whose relationship develops a few kinks when Lucie decides she wants a baby. In French with English subtitles.
• A Walk In The Sun / 1943 / VCI Entertainment / Not Rated
Presented restored and uncut for the very first time, the epic war film based on the novel by Harry Brown is just as magnificent today as it was back in 1943. Dana Andrews and Richard Conte star in this riveting drama. VCI’s release includes two new featurettes with actor Norman Lloyd and Joel Blumberg.
• Buck Rogers: 70th Anniversary / 1939 / VCI Entertainment / Not Rated
With the exception of Flash Gordon, the character of Buck Rogers stands alone as one of the most famous (and oldest) space adventurers. After being inadvertently placed in suspended animation for 500 years, Buck Rogers awakens to find the future ruled by Killer Kane and his thugs. VCI re-releases the classic 12-chapter serial with a ton of all-new special features. A must have for serial hounds everywhere.
• A Christmas Carol / 1951 / VCI Entertainment / Not Rated
Bah! For those of you who couldn’t stomach the latest Dickens’ Disney’s A Christmas Carol fiasco, here is perhaps the most famous adaptation (also known as plain ol’ Scrooge), digitally restored from a new High Def master (VCI’s first Blu-ray release). This Blu-ray release also includes a Standard DVD version, making it an easy pick.
• Monsters, Marriage, And Murder In Manchvegas / 2009 / Motern Media / Not Rated
Look out, America — because the guys who brought you Freaky Farley are at it again. A crazed slasher is on the loose, and the members of the Manchvegas Outlaw Society are on the case, despite the fact that their own feelings for each other are getting in the way. Matt Farley once again stars and produces. The wacky soundtrack is also available to download.
Luigi Bastardo will return in “B-Movie Gift Guide III: Cult-O-Rama.”