Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Podcast: A Boyfriend for Christmas (2004)

Direct download.

It's the Holiday season, so Chris and Nick get into the spirit by crossing into the unexplored frontier that is.... Hallmark Christmas movies! That's right, a series of Christmas-time reviews from people who are absolutely not the demographic for them!

We begin with 2004's A Boyfriend for Christmas, where Holly (Kelli Williams of The Practice) makes the titular Christmas wish as a child to a creepy Santa (Charles Durning, frequent Santa). A mere 20 years later, Holly meets Ryan (Patrick Muldoon of Starship Troopers), a rich hotshot lawyer who lies about his identity and participates in Santa's twisted love scheme. Will Santa's Christmas prophecy come true? Will Holly wind up Ryan, or her sniveling evil ex-boyfriend (who is even richer than Ryan)?

  • Charles Durning's final role was in Bleeding Hearts, a horror film co-starring Dustin Diamond and Robert Loggia, that released more than two years after his death in 2012. He played Santa Claus.
  • ABFC is currently set to air at 4 AM on December 1, 2017, so set your TIVos to Hallmark if you want to enjoy our goofs.
  • Erica Gimpel (Coco from Fame) was on Season 1 of Veronica Mars, a show Nick has never watched. Here, she is the friend Holly drags to brunch, whose husband is never seen. David E. Kelley was (probably) so impressed with her performance in this TV movie that he cast her in a four episode arc of Boston Legal in 2006.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Podcast: Dead Weekend (1994)

Direct download.

Your Stupid Minds finishes off the Lesser Baldwin series with the 1994’s Showtime original high concept sci-fi porno Dead Weekend starring Stephen Baldwin.

I couldn't find a trailer so here's a random clip with Tom Kenny screaming over the radio.

During a fake earthquake evacuation in a dystopian LA-like city, Weed (Baldwin) and Payne (David Rasche) are officers in the paramilitary police force assigned to catch a rogue alien while also murdering as many gang members as possible. Weed uses this opportunity to have sex with a strange woman in the woods, who, guess what, turns out the be the alien. Not just an alien, but a shapeshifting super sexy nymphomaniac alien who requires sex to survive. Also annoying radio DJ Joe Blow (Tom Kenny) screams awful voices into his microphone the entire time.

Some notes:

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Podcast: Desert Thunder (1999)

Direct download.

Your Stupid Minds continues its Lesser Baldwin series with 1999’s forgettable and nearly unacquirable Desert Thunder.

Directed by Jim Wynorski (Vampirella, Chopping Mall) and starring Daniel Baldwin, Desert Thunder is about a fictitious late ‘90s operation to bomb an Iraqi anthrax facility before Saddam can attack a major European city. Though the stakes are high, the film is mostly about Baldwin recruiting a team of misfits to fly F-14s in an abandoned Boy Scout summer camp in the San Bernardino Valley. At first they don’t get along, but after beating up rednecks at a nearby bar, they learn to work together.

Some Notes:

  • The only way I could find to watch this movie is to buy the DVD off Amazon.
  • Via Wikipedia: "In 1998, [Daniel] Baldwin was found running naked through the halls of New York's Plaza Hotel shouting "Baldwin!" and was arrested for possession of cocaine. He pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and was sentenced to three months in drug rehab."

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Podcast: Fair Game (1995)

Direct download.

Your Stupid Minds moves into our Lesser Baldwins series with the reasonably forgettable Fair Game.

Based off the same crappy book as Cobra, Kate McQueen (Cindy Crawford) is a high-powered female Miami lawyer who’s shot at while jogging. She gives her statement to the swaggering and inexplicably Italian-American Det. Max Kirkpatrick (Billy Baldwin), which then sets off a series of elaborate tech-inspired terrorist assassination attempts on Kate’s life. Max must help her survive and find out who is doing this and why. Also Salma Hayek is there.

Some Notes:

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Podcast: China O'Brien (1990)

Your Stupid Minds finishes out the Cynthia Rothrock series with one of her most beloved films: China O’Brien! No, it isn’t the story an Asian Irish fusion restaurant with sesame fish and chips and black and white rice pudding. It’s a kick-ass karate film in the style of Road House and Walking Tall.

After city police officer China (Rothrock) is not punished for committing a justifiable homicide in self defense after an alley karate fight, she returns to her unnamed home town to pick up her decade-old high school relationship with Matt (Richard Norton) and visit her family. Her father is the town sheriff battling systemic corruption, prostitution, and crime. After he dies in a fiery car bomb explosion, China runs for sheriff and roundhouse kicks the corruption out of town.

Some Notes:
  • Apparently the parade scene was shot at an actual parade, which would explain the shoddy footage better than we did.
  • Directed by Robert Clouse, who also made Enter the Dragon, Game of Death, and Gymkata.
  • China O'Brien II immediately followed the release of this film. We haven't seen it.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Podcast: Mercenaries (2014)

Direct download.

Your Stupid Minds continues its ad hoc Cynthia Rothrock series with 2014’s Mercenaries in which she barely appears!

A team of four incarcerated women (ZoĆ« Bell, Kristanna Loken, Vivica A. Fox and Nicole Bilderback) are forced to save the president’s daughter from a crazed female terrorist (Brigitte Nielsen) an an Expendables-style mission at the behest of CIA agent Mona (Cynthia Rothrock). They travel to some middle Asian country (that looks nothing like Southern California) and ingratiate themselves using their feminine wiles in order to kick butt and save the day.

Some Notes:

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Podcast: Above the Law (Righting Wrongs) (1986)

Your Stupid Minds returns to one of its most-frequently used tags: martial arts! Join us, gentle listener, won't you (© Karina Longworth), as we travel to the world that was Hong Kong cinema in the 1980's, as brought to us by director Corey Yuen (DOA: Dead or Alive, this amazing JCVD Russian kickboxer fight, The Transporter), featuring our first but not last film featuring Cynthia Rothrock!

When attorney and martial arts expert Jason Chan's (Biao Yuen) legal mentor is gunned down by a cadre of elite assassins, he's annoyed. But when a state witness and his children are brutally exploded by an unnamed "Black Assassin" (kickboxer Peter Cunningham), enough is enough and it's time to start brutally murdering gangsters by kicking and/or choking them with your feet until they're dead! The murder of one crime boss brings Chan into the orbit of inspector Cindy Si (Rothrock), a no-nonsense cop who will kick everyone in Hong Kong to get to the truth.

But Chan's revenge scheme is interrupted when the gangster is killed by a bigger evil: a corrupt police commissioner who is secretly the top crime boss of the city (played with gusto by Melvin Wong). Can Chan prove the commissioner's guilt before he gets karate kicked by Cynthia Rothrock or kickboxed to death by an evil Ernie Hudson? Watch the movie to find out! If you couldn't tell from this plot description, this movie rules.

Notable Notes:
  • Rothrock was discovered as a 7th degree black-belt on Ernie Reyes Sr.'s (the father of the Surf Ninja and Red Sonja child) traveling karate team, when she was brought to Hong Kong to work as an action star despite speaking no Chinese. Her performance was dubbed into Chinese, then re-dubbed back into English for the Western cut. She starred in multiple Hong Kong films before crossing over into an American release with China O'Brien in 1988.
  • Karen Sheperd, the assassin who fights Rothrock in the clip above, was a real-life karate forms champion, defeating Rothrock in actual competition in 1981. Maybe that real-life victory caused her to complain about her character losing a fight to Rothrock in a fictional movie, forcing re-shoots to cut around her refusal to take a professional wrestling-style loss. Inexplicably, Vin Diesel still does this in the 2010s, despite never having won any karate championships.
  • Peter "Sugarfoot" Cunningham had an undefeated record in kickboxing: could he defeat self-proclaimed undefeated kickboxer Harold Diamond, co-star of Hard Ticket to Hawaii? We think he probably could.
  • Multiple cuts of the movie exist: Nick rented a VHS copy missing about 14 minutes of material, and the DVD copy I acquired is missing about 3-4 minutes. Presumably the missing footage is a re-shot ending, while the VHS is likely missing footage of brutal violence, including children being exploded and old men being strangled to death.
  • Melvin Wong trained for his role as the big bad by working out with Bruce Lee pal Bolo Yeung, the dude best known to western audiences for playing the enormous Bloodsport villain and looking generally amazing for a guy in his mid-40s.