Sunday, February 24, 2013

VHS...It's Still The Best (for '80's movies)

Nobody knows what evil lurks in The Closet of Shame...

Sometimes I feel like my friend over at the Bedroom in the Basement is one of the few people who I've actually known for so long that we share a lot of the same thoughts, hobbies and various interests...often at the same time. For example, when I had the idea to start making a denim thrash metal jacket to wear to concerts (its something I've wanted to do for years, because I'm metal), I discovered that he was already in the process of making himself one as well.

It shall be an epic competition...

When I discovered Judas Priest much too late in life and thought that my Bedroom-dwelling friend would enjoy the hell out of their early albums, he was already a recent fan himself. 

Judas Priest
"Victim of Changes" 
(the song that hooked me)
from Sad Wings of Destiny (1976)

When I moved to Atlanta and was regretting how I had gotten rid of some VHS movies at a moving/yard sale, I decided to pick some of them back up again (watching Dawn of the Dead on Blu-ray just isn't the same). Of course, soon after I discover that the Bedroom Dweller had also begun to collect VHS tapes from the 1980's, and also shared the opinion that certain movies can only be enjoyed on VHS.

Seriously? You don't own 'The Goonies?'

The next time I get the chance to visit the cold North, I shall be hanging out in the Bedroom in the Basement where we will be found talking for hours about comics, watching the latest VHS acquisitions and rocking out to thrash metal and shotgunning Pabst Blue Ribbon. I declare that this must be done at least once a decade for the sake of sanity.

Surprisingly voted for Obama...


I picked up some awesome VHS flicks lately. Allow me to grab them from the Closet of Shame and show you the greatness of 80's classics on VHS...the way they were meant to be seen.

TRON
(1982)

For the life of me, I cannot convince my woman of the past decade to sit down and watch TRON with me. She absolutely refuses to believe that it's an excellent and creative movie about the world that exists within computers. TRON is filled with scenes that are almost Star Wars-esque in their delivery, such as the overt religious undertones and similarities between The Emperor and Master Control. Being the first movie to truly utilize CGI as the basis for a film, TRON was definitely a movie that was way ahead of its time. In my mind, what makes TRON stand out above other overblown CGI movies is that the CGI in TRON is a big part of the story, rather than just attempting to be the "shock and awe" that movies provide today. There is a reason why the CGI looks the way it does, and why things happen the way they do. TRON is one of the most creative movies ever made. Check out this scene below, where underlying sarcasm is prominent:


While perusing a local thrift store, I spotted TRON on VHS for a couple bucks. Sold.


Parents
(1989)

Parents is creepy as hell. That's the only way to put it. I'm not sure why it's not more widely known, because it's definitely one of the better horror flicks I've seen. I first watched this movie on Youtube a few years back (its not up anymore, sorry folks), and I remember being really creeped out by Randy Quaid's performance. It's almost like he was born to play the role of a dysfunctional and canibalistic 1950's father figure. The weird lighting and dark backdrops really add to the psychological terror that Quaid's son experiences throughout the entire film. Check out this Siskel & Ebert review about it:


Sitting up late one night and drunkenly perusing items on Amazon, I spotted a used copy of Parents on VHS for $2 plus shipping. Sold.



KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park
(1978)

While technically not a '80's film, KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park is close enough. Its a movie that's so bad, I don't even think it's product that KISS even have available for sale anymore. This movie is notoriously bad, as the script, acting, special effect and editing are all horrible. This terrible film is one of the best examples of what can go wrong when something is haphazardly put together solely for the sake of capitalism. Take a look at the clip below to see what I mean:


I found Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park on VHS at the same thrift store where I found TRON. I bought it for $2. Bargain.


In closing, here's a picture of what I've got put together so far for my metal jacket. I don't have a lot yet, but I'm on my way:


I've had that Slayer pin since high school. Some habits die hard.

Take us out, boys...
Slayer
"Metal Storm/Face the Slayer"
Show No Mercy
Metal Blade Records (1983)

2 comments:

  1. Thanks for the glowing tribute man, it's appreciated. And as for hanging out, I hope it's more than once a decade (I think once a year is kinda realistic).

    Speaking of "The Goonies," I just watched an episode of "Family Ties" featuring Martha Plimpton, who played a troubled teen who got caught shoplifting at the clothing store Mallory worked at. Now there's some synchronicity for ya!

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  2. Yeah man, its 2013. We're almost due again.

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