Saturday, December 22, 2012

My Space Classics: First Review of ICWXP

My first review of something I review all the time: 

From February 2008:

Thanks to MySpace, a new force battling the evil of bad movies has emerged...Incognito Cinema Warriors XP!!
Out from the apocalyptic bowels of a Kansas City suburb, Commander Rikk Wolf battles against zombies and Hellspawn for CORPS...because for some reason they have no faith towards a 27 year old Slayer named Buffy. Anywho, he's the last survivor of his battalion, and now finds himself an an abandoned movie house called the Cine-Sorrow Theater. He meets two robots, Topsybot 5000 and Johnny Cylon, then discovers that the "owner," Dr. Harrison Blackwood, will force them to watch bad movies.
Yes, this sounds familiar. In fact, the doc nearly admits it's a knock-off of the original movie-mocking diety known as MST3000. But since that's "split" into Cinematic Titanic and Film Crew/Rifftrax, someone has to pick up the torch.
So, ICW has been chosen to revive the tradition, trapped in a theater "where the '50's went to die", and mock away at crimes against cinema.

This isn't too unusual. Some MST fans have made their own versions of the show, either for their own amusement or YouTube fodder. But the ICW guys figure they can make a few bucks doing this job, and it looks like they will. The first movie is Bride of the Gorilla, featuring a pre-Perry Mason Raymond Burr as Barney, the foreman of a plantation. He's in love with Deena, the wife of his boss, and hopes to take her as his own. He knocks off Mr. Plantation Owner, but the only witness is an old lady with nasty witchcraft of her own. He turns Barney into a were-Gorilla, and not because he killed. He was also stringing along Marina, a native woman who also hoped to be in Barney's greasy arms. The movie, for lack of a better term, also features Lon Chaney Jr., who was once an Indestructible Man.

So, how to the ICW guys stand up as extreme riffers? Pretty good, actually. They have a few too many jokes about bodily fluids, but they get some good lines in here, such as...
"Bow before Siodmak!" (the guy who wrote and directed this movie)
"That snake swallow a violinist?"
When Marina emerges from the jungle, hoping to talk to Barney, "Shadow Ninja Attack!!"
Marina finds comfort in the spooky old lady, "I love you Grandma Rotten Pumpkin Head." (She's also compared to Mel Brooks in drag).
As the "curse" starts to take hold, "When is this curse going to kick in? I want to get this movie over with."
Then Barney wanders in the jungle, but we don't see him as a gorilla.."Invisible Were-Gorilla. Throwing invisible poop at a theater near you."
Just as Barney gets back from a night of being an animal, "She'll never know that I snuck out to become a gorilla," and my favorite riff about the jungle, "It's got fun and games, and you've got no money, and it's got your disease." Burr also says "The jungle's my house. It belongs to me", which should have been followed by something like "No, wait. The Bank of Tarzan just foreclosed on your sub-prime loan."
Finally, this riff that describes how the crew feels.."If the plot had been half as thick as this jungle, this movie might actually have been good enough to suck."

OK, the Riffs are strong with these guys. There are some similarities, such as the red "zombie alert" that's a bit too much like "Movie Sign", and the yellow light when Dr. Blackwood wants to talk to them from his undisclosed location. He sees Wolf, Topsybot and Cylon as his little ant farm. He'll inflict bad movies on them until he's bored, and then unleash the zombies on them...unless the zombies get to the doc first. There's an idea the show can consider.

Otherwise, the show is structured like a traditional night at the movies our grandparents may have had: a trailer first, then one of those propaganda films trying to convince you to get popcorn or candy, then the main feature. The ICW guys can re-create that, plus add a lame cartoon or newsreel. That will set them apart from the MST style.

Of course, so will the future episodes...blood-drenched horror flicks from Europe not even the MST crew would touch. Something about FCC standards, but we can see what they'll do to them. The ICW site also has small bios of the guys behind this great idea in who-needs-you-media-conglomerates entertainment. Lets hope we'll see more of this series soon!

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