Meet “Murphy” the Mirthmobile…And the AMC Pacer!

Before Murphy…and the Mirthmobile…

Picture it, 1976…a small-wide car called…THE PACER!

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The First “Wide Small” Car!

The American Motors Corporation (aka “AMC”) Pacer was touted as the first “wide small” car (and nicknamed “The Flying Fishbowl”). The Pacer was produced from 1975 until 1979. Despite its short life, The Pacer became a pop culture icon in 1992, upon the release of the Saturday Night Live-inspired feature film Wayne’s World.

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Iconic!

The beauty part about fans and geekism is that someone is always ready to re-create an icon, right down to the painstaking little details.

I proudly present…

Murphy The Mirthmobile!

Hello Murphy! This is the exact model of Pacer used in the film – the 1976 model! Murphy has New York license plates (mild disappointment!), but the other details are spot on perfect! As a Wayne’s World fan/geek/meticulous observer, details are mas importante!

And for $20 per person (or $10 per person wearing VIP lanyards), visiting Murphy gets you ample photos, choice seating…

You can also play Wayne and Garth…

Guess whose “blonde” hair worked out for Garth?

And sample the Red Rope Licorice!

Did I Mention The Most Excellent Mirth-morabilia?

I have the soundtrack for both movies…on cassette!

Also, I covered the VCR board game in a previous Retroist article!

Most Excellent Mirthmobile (and Murphy!) Related Content

Wizard World Description – Murphy The Mirthmobile

AMC Pacer Information – Wikipedia Article

This Pawn Stars segment…

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That Darn Stairway Dilemma…

If you must know, James did ask. :-)

(Another) Most Excellent Related Wizard World Chicago 2017 Experience Article

Deeds And Dirtbikes: The Vehicles of “Megaforce”! : Convention photos of screen-used vehicles from the 1982 film Megaforce…and my butt sitting pretty on the dirtbike!

On a silly side note, I saw Murphy driving down River Road in Rosemont, Illinois from my hotel room window. Can’t miss that detail!

Perhaps it was headed for…Aurora?

The Resurrected - Scream Factory

Scream Factory Resurrects 1991’s The Resurrected!

Rejoice, Fright Fans as The Resurrected is finally being given its Blu-Ray release. Thanks of course to our friends from Scream Factory! Just in time when our thoughts began to turn to things Halloween. Furthermore The Resurrected is based on H.P. Lovecraft’s The Strange Case of Charles Dexter Ward!

The Resurrected boasts some incredible talents. For example in front of the camera you have the likes of Chris Sarandon (Fright Night). As well as John Terry (Hawk the Slayer, Lost). Rounding out the cast are Jane Sibbett (Herman’s Head) and Robert Romanus (Fast Times at Ridgemont High). The film is directed by the late and great Dan O’Bannon (Alien, Return of the Living Dead).

I will admit that back in my youth, while working at the local video store. I knew of The Resurrected. However for some reason I never actually rented the film itself. I think it might actually have had to do with the VHS cover of the time. While I certainly knew of Chris Sarandon thanks to 1985’s Fright Night I wasn’t aware of the Lovecraft connection.
The Resurrected - VHS

The story for The Resurrected concerns a private investigator named John March (Terry). Who takes a case for a distraught Claire Ward (Sibbett) concerning her husband, Charles Dexter Ward (Sarandon). Claire is quite worried about her husband’s actions lately. The scientist’s late night disappearances as well as working with an odd Doctor, they have led her to hire John to find out the truth. Lonnie (Romanus) is John’s right-hand man who aids in uncovering disturbing things about Ward.

There is also that matter regarding the portrait found of Charles’ kinsman, Joseph Curwen.

[Via] ScreamFactoryTV

It would appear that Charles isn’t exactly feeling quite himself anymore. That might have more than a little to do with finding his lost kinsman’s diary. Which as it turns out contains the secrets of achieving immortality. But who is to stay that gift is meant for Ward and the betterment of humanity?
The Resurrected - Chris Sarandon

So what did I think of The Resurrected?

O’Bannon crafted a very well done H.P. Lovecraft adaptation. And trust me, I know there are more than a few bad film adaptations of the author’s work out there. While it may indeed have been an early 90s movie, it feels like it came from the 80s. The horrors slowly pay themselves out, including generous doses of blood and gore. All of the elements wrapped in a quasi-noir movie.
The Resurrected - John Terry

What about the Scream Factory extra features?

You can rest easy. They have most definitely added worthy special features. Although I was shocked they didn’t include in the listed extras, the fact they have a clip from the Fangoria Chainsaw Awards. Featuring none other than Bruce Campbell and Quentin Tarantino, presenting the award to Dan O’Bannon for The Resurrected.

  • 2K transfer from the film’s vaulted interpositive film element
  • Claire’s Conundrum – an interview with actress Jane Sibbett
  • The Strange Case of Charles Dexter Ward – an interview with S.T. Joshi, author of I Am Providence: The Life and Times of H.P. Lovecraft
  • Audio Commentary with producers Mark Borde and Kenneth Raich, screenwriter Brent V. Friedman, actor Robert Romanus and make-up effects artist Todd Masters
  • The Resurrected Man – an interview with Chris Sarandon
  • Abominations & Adaptations – an interview with screenwriter Brent Friedman
  • Grotesque Melodies – an interview with composer Richard Band
  • Lovecraftian Landscapes – an interview with production designer Brent Thomas
  • Human Experiments – an interview with special effects artist Todd Masters
  • Deleted and Extended Scenes from the workprint
  • Home Video Trailer & Japanese Trailer
  • Photo Gallery

The good news is you can head out today and pick up a copy of The Resurrected for yourself. Although if you are worried about the gruesome horrors that might be lurking outside your door. You can hop on over to Scream Factory and place your order online!

The Resurrected - Attack

“Say Ahh!”

Deeds And Dirtbikes: The Vehicles of “Megaforce”!

Megaforce? You mean that laughable movie about a secret army, starring Barry Bostwick and Persis Khambatta? Megaforce, that movie where the dirtbike flips upside down?

Oh yes, Megaforce!

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Highlights of ComiCon

Think of your ComiCon experiences. What do you like the most? Celebrity encounters (love them), and the vendors that create opportunities to spend way too much money (love that too)? Both sound great!

There’s another thing I love about ComiCon…

Vehicles!

And awesome people posing with me!

It’s true – I love a good pose with a movie-used (or even replicated – I’m not picky!) vehicle!

I especially love it when the vehicles are movie-used AND obscure!

You Mean You’ve Never Heard of Megaforce?

Megaforce is a 1982 “action” film starring Barry Bostwick as Commander Ace Hunter. He’s the leader of a secret army composed of international soldiers. And his services are called upon when the peaceful republic of Sardun is attacked by its aggressive neighbor, Gamibia. The film also stars Persis Khambatta, and was directed by Hal Needham.

Ah yes, Hal Needham. That explains some of the absurd stuff in the movie.

Let this Mentos parody explain that absurdity:

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Yep.

If this doesn’t clue you into the absurdity of the film, nothing will.

Ok, three Golden Raspberry nominations explain everything.

The Vehicles of Megaforce

Behold, the reason you’re reading this!

The dirtbike and dune buggy pictures above are – brace thyself – actual movie-used vehicles. Normally with shows like this, one expects replicas built from scratch. But no, these are the real deal.

For $10, I too could be Barry Bostwick on a tricked out dirtbike, capable of flying through the chroma key skies…

I’m missing spandex, a mullet, and a baby blue headband. But I feel awesome!

The proud displayer of these amazing vehicles was happy to show me everything, including the inside of the dune buggy. He also told me an awesome story from that weekend, when he met Barry Bostwick and asked him to come take a look. Apparently, Mr. Bostwick was so excited to see the vehicles, he stayed there for – again, brace thyself – 45 minutes!

I guess he didn’t care that the movie is watchable only with a Rifftrax commentary.

All Coolness Aside…

The vehicles of Megaforce (unfortunately) have the distinction of making the cut of  The Drive’s August 6, 2017 “listicle,” Top 5 Worst Movie Vehicles of the 1980s. In fact…they’re the #1 worst vehicles.

True story.

Tack on the commercial and critical failure that followed its theatrical release, and you have the ultimate cheese that’s prime for RiffTrax viewing.

Take in this sampling (I actually own this movie in its riffed form):

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Unfortunately, searching the RiffTrax site yielded no results, so I can’t say “hey, go out and buy this!”.

So um…now I’m bummed.

But this is still awesome!

 Silver Lining?

Guardians - DVD - Shout! Factory

Shout! Factory Debuts The Russian Film Guardians

I am sure you might remember seeing a few months ago the trailer for Guardians. It kind of made splash I think it is safe to say. What with it not only being Director Sarik Andreasyan’s answer to the X-Men and possibly the Avengers. But it in my opinion decided to go one better. As after all one of the heroes just so happens to be a were-bear. I should make myself more clear on that particular point. Guardians has a were-bear with a mini-gun!

Now Shout! Factory has unleashed Guardians on DVD. It is a Walmart exclusive starting on September 5th but will be made available on Blu-Ray beginning on December 5th. While it does offer both English and Russian audio tracks, I highly recommend you go with the original language with English subtitles when watching it.

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Guardians introduces us to an secret organization that began during the Cold War. With a code name of “Patriot” you can probably guess its sole goal was to protect the homeland from various threats. What types of heroes made up Patriot?

Guardians - Ler
First up we have Ler who quite frankly can call on rocks almost as well as Ludo from 1986’s Labyrinth. I suppose if I am being fair I should say that Ler can go do better. He possesses the ability to manipulate rocks. Flinging them as projectiles or as you can see in the image above, he can also form armor.

Guardians - Xenia
Next up is Xenia, kind of the Guardians answer to the Avengers Black Widow. An acrobatic martial artist who also can transform into a liquid state. Allowing her to become nearly invisible and travel safely underwater without needing to breathe.

Guardians - Khan
Khan is possibly the deadliest of the Guardians. He too is skilled in martial arts but he is proficient in all manner of bladed weapons. Although as you can see in that photo – he prefers to use those crescent blades. Add to that his superhuman speed and you can see why I said he was the most deadliest.

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Last but not least there is the mighty Ursus, the were-bear. Even before Ursus is given a mini-gun he demonstrates throughout the film his superhuman strength. This member of the Guardians has a bit of The Wolf Man in him. As while he luckily can control his super power he is always afraid of losing control and going full bear.
Guardians - Ursus

The Guardians must return!

Apparently being subject to the Patriot project not only gave you super powers but slowed your aging. As after the Cold War the Guardians go into hiding until the modern day. When a threat from their past returns in the form of a rogue scientist. One who gains super strength and the ability to control technology. The team must reunite and now protect the homeland and furthermore the World from the threat of the evil Kuratov.
Guardians - Kuratov

Now you might be wondering if the films is any good. The answer is its an incredibly fun and over the top superhero thrill-ride. I won’t lie to you of course, you won’t be wanting to think real deeply while watching. Which in this case is totally fine as you’ll be too busy yelling in excitement at watching a were-bear going to town on some bad guys. Still I found myself impressed by the special effects and taken in with the truly non-stop action of the movie that I have no problem recommending you check it out for yourself.

What bonus features does Guardians boast?

Well, friends, the truth is not a whole lot. As this was a Russian film you can’t exactly expect a commentary track, right? Still this is Shout! Factory we are talking about and they supplied a few goodies.

  • New interviews with cast and crew
  • Character Profiles
  • Image Gallery
  • Trailers

You can pick up Guardians on DVD at Walmart tomorrow!

Saturn 3

Do You Remember 1980’s Saturn 3?

Let’s visit Saturn 3. It’s a neat 1980 sci-fi film starring Farrah Fawcett , Kirk Douglas and Harvey Keitel, directed by Stanley Donne and John Barry. Be warned as SPOILERS are straight ahead!

Set in the future, Saturn 3 is an outpost where scientists are working to hydroponically grow food for Earth.They do this beneath the surface of Saturn’s third moon, Titan. When they (Farrah Fawcett as Alex, Kirk Douglas as Adam) aren’t working they are lovers in space. They exercise together, play together, etc.
Saturn 3

Things get complicated quickly…Arriving as a stowaway, is Benson (Harvey Keitel ) and he is up to no good! He killed a fellow astronaut scientist and took his place for the voyage. He brings a bunch of cargo and one special canister. What could it be? Be patient, I’ll tell ya. Don’t worry. Benson is immediately smitten with Alex (Farrah) and who could blame him! He offers her various drugs and explains that this is the way of present Earth. He also lets her know that body sharing is very common. He
insists that Adam(Kirk) is the old and obsolete man.

He’s really pushing the issue.
Saturn 3

Very shortly, he introduces his cargo- a set of Tinker Toys! I mean, assembles a huge robot named “Hector.” There is fresh lab grown brains in the special canister, that is a blank page, with no thoughts, input, or experience. Kind of like me.

Benson (Keitel) is mind linked to the robot via a transmitter inserted into the back of his head. Hector soon falls for Alex (Farrah) as he picks up every nuance of Benson’s brain.
Saturn 3

The robot kills a dog owned by Alex and Adam, and this kind of makes the already rocky relationship fall apart quickly. Following a cringe worthy “robot needle instrument to eye” scene, the space lovers square off against the robot and master.
Saturn

Alex and Adam set up traps and the robot trumps them at every turn. At some point Benson (Keitel) dies and becomes one with the robot, taking over both the space post and unfortunately, Adam. He put one of the outlets in his head. Wonder if he got good TV reception?

Adam conceives a plan and doesn’t let Alex in on it. Meanwhile, The Robot, now Benson and Hector combined, commands them to report to work, to increase productivity. Adam sacrifices himself and knocks the robot into a leftover trap. It works, even though it didn’t before.

Jump to Alex (Farrah) on board a vessel that is approaching Earth, with a small crowd exchanging pills while viewing the planet through large windows.

[Via] Scream Factory TV

The good and not so good notes…
Now, that last scene kind of falls flat for me, it had dialogue that feels like it could’ve been changed to finish the film in a better manner. Kind of tie it up. I loved the set design of the Saturn 3 outpost.Some weird labyrinth of metals and ramps and a lot of deep blue colors.

I didn’t like Keitel’s tiny ponytail. It made me want to snip it! His speech pattern was cold and empty in contrast to Alex (Farrah) and Adam (Kirk). It gave him a real creep factor.
Saturn 3

Overall, I liked the film a lot- the robot was cool, there was action, humor, drama, everything you’d want! So, I recommend Saturn 3. You can order your copy from Shout Factory and as always they’ve packed in some extras:

  • New High Definition Transfer
  • Commentary by Greg Moss (Saturn 3 Fan site) and film critic David Bradley
  • Interviews with Academy Award winning Special Effects artist Colin Chilvers and actor Roy Dotrice
  • Deleted Scene
  • Additional scenes from the network television version
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • TV Spots
  • Still Gallery

Saturn 3
Just be ready to figure out if you’re obsolete or not.