Showing posts with label movies. Show all posts
Showing posts with label movies. Show all posts

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Robber Beaten by Hair Salon Owner and Sex-Slaved for 3 Days Fed Only Viagra

Robber Beaten by Hair Salon Owner and Sex-Slaved for 3 Days Fed Only Viagra

Planning to rob any Russian hair salons in the near future? Better make sure the owners are not Pulp Fiction fans with a black belt in Karate, first. Viktor Jasinski (32) who tried doing just that ended up as a sex victim after the female shop owner Olga Zajac (28, shown above at the top) overpowered him with a single kick and decided to 'teach him a lesson'.

Then, in a nearly perfect remake of the famous 'gimp scene' in Tarantino's 1994 Pulp Fiction (starring Ving Rhames and Bruce Willis, need a reminder? check the video below) the lady dragged the semi-conscious kicked 'robber' to a back room of her salon and stripped him naked. She then tied him up 'to a radiator' using a 'hair dryer cable' and used him as a sex slave while force feeding him Viagra to 'keep the lesson going'.

According to the local police the above procedure went on for 3 consecutive days, until the would-be robber was eventually released with Zajak saying 'he had learned his lesson'. We're pretty sure that he did. Anyways, both Jasinski and Zajac have now been arrested. More details? Read the full story here

Collage images

Top: Olga Zajac (via DailyMail) | Bottom left: Ving Rhames and Bruce Willis in Tarantino's Pulp Fiction | Bottom right: Official Pulp Fiction poster

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Movies that Changed Cinema: The African Queen - Fiction Meets Reality

The African Queen - fiction meets reality

Some people say hunting elephants was the real type of activity director John Huston had in mind when he decided to do The African Queen. Anyway, right from the start, he insisted this is not going to be just another cardboard decorated studio feature. Ranked by the American Film Institute in 2007 as the 65 greatest movie of all time, The African Queen had to be made on location, where real crocodiles and leaches eat real people. Looking for the most perfect place to follow C. S. Forester's fascination, Huston had to fly 25,000 miles across the African continent until finding the right spot, on the Ruiki river in what then used to be Belgian Congo.

The magic chemistry between Katharine Hepburn (Rose Sayer) and Humphrey Bogart (Charlie Allnut) seen in this early color movie is of the most famous in motion picture history, as "other plot elements were secondary comparing to the quintessential love-hate relationship that went on between Rose and Charlie." Yet, the thing mostly remembered about this movie is that the making of The African Queen was an adventure, and not a very easy one for unexperienced explorers as the people who made it.

On-location shooting was nowhere near as common as today

The African Queen - fiction meets reality

A book by Peter Viertel and the 1990 film White Hunter Black Heart directed by and starring Clint Eastwood, both sketched Peter Viertel's experiences working with Huston during the on-location filming on a time when, especially for American films outside of the USA, were very very rare. A 2000 article by Catherine Henry, describes the kind of experiences Hepburn, Bogart and the rest of Huston's crew had to cope with in a few short and very effective words:
"At a time (1951) when on-location shooting was nowhere near as common as today, traveling 1,100 miles up the Congo to make what is essentially a filmed dialogue must have seemed fanatical. And subsequent encounters with blood flukes, crocodiles, soldier ants, wild boars, stampeding elephants, malaria, and dysentery were hardly reassuring."
The African Queen - fiction meets reality

Just to make things clear, make no mistake: Huston was not the first director to shoot a large portion of his movie on location. Even in those early days some film makers, including himself, had already shot a few on location scenes "for realistic flavoring". Westerns being made on location, for example, were not very unusual back then and one of them - The Treasure of Sierra Madre - was even made in 1948 by Huston himself. Yet, as described by Robert Moore on this review of African Queen: Limited Commemorative Edition (1952) DVD, this was a very different case:
"in the 1940s and 1950s [...] films might go to a famous locale and shoot a couple of scenes for realistic flavoring, as with a couple of scenes in On The Town or An American In Paris. Many Westerns had been shot on location, but that was no great challenge given the close proximity of Hollywood to Western locales. John Huston had previously filmed The Treasure of Sierra Madre in Mexico, but going to the Congo and Uganda for extensive filming had rarely been attempted (sorry, all those Tarzan movies were filmed in California). It was a spectacular undertaking (which Katherine Hepburn recorded in a book she wrote about making The African Queen)."
Inadvertently led her into the middle of a herd of wild animals

And indeed, the "spectacular undertaking" experience had triggered many books and articles, some of them written by Hepburn herself. In her 1987 book The Making of The African Queen, or How I Went to Africa with Bogie, Bacall and Huston and Almost Lost My Mind, cited on IMDB, Hepburn describes the first African Queen shooting day, which required five cars and trucks to take the cast, crew and equipment three and a half miles from Biondo to the Ruiki river.

They then loaded everything onto boats and sailed another two and a half miles to the shooting location. Hepburn describes Huston's obsession with hunting and how one day she was convinced to join Huston on one of his hunting journeys when he "inadvertently led her into the middle of a herd of wild animals" from which they were "lucky to escape alive."

The African Queen - fiction meets reality

Also, according to IMDB, dysentery, malaria, bacteria-filled drinking water and several close brushes with wild animals and poisonous snakes is just a partial list of the close encounters participants of this movie had to deal with. In addition, most of both cast and crew "were sick for much of the filming." Yet, other sources claimed almost everyone in the cast and crew got sick. Everyone except for Huston and Bogy, who attributed it to the fact that they basically lived on imported Scotch as later described by Bogart whom this role won him the only Oscar of his career: "All I ate was baked beans, canned asparagus and Scotch whiskey. Whenever a fly bit Huston or me, it dropped dead."

Here is the original movie trailer on Youtube as seen on 1951. As you can see, the fact it was taken on location and included authentic African sights was emphasized by the distribution company that realized how new and exciting they would be for studio-used audience. Enjoy.

Image sources
Previous Movies that changed Cinema articles

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The return of Dr. Caligari

The return of Dr. Caligari

The first thought that came to our heada when we saw the photos of the Film & Visual Media Research Center at the University of London’s Birkbeck College is that someone was crazy enough to color a copy of the cardboard decoration from our number one favorite horror movie The Cabinet of Dr Caligari, a 1921 silent B&W masterpiece from genius director Robert Wiene. Apparently we were not very far from truth and the Architects of this construction were aiming at anyone who realizes how cool this movie is.

The return of Dr. Caligari

According to The Cool Hunter, a dot uk blog focusing on global zeitgeist phenomenas and fashion who posted these pictures, London-based Surface Architects created this magnificent new home for the institute using an old reconstructed building as a “cover” when basement, ground floor and the extension were transformed "Robert Wiene style" into a cinema auditorium, surrounded by all other necessities such as media study suite, seminar rooms and offices.

The return of Dr. Caligari

Ian Christie, Birkbeck’s Professor of Film and Media History, kind of said so himself when explaining how the projection of intersecting cones has various film associations and how “the jagged angles recall the Expressionist set design of The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, an influential German film of 1921”. Here is a small taste of the original Dr. Caligari cardboard decoration, just in case you still didn't have the pleasure to watch it.

The return of Dr. Caligari

Lastly, as we live a new world where media is freely shared by movie buffs, here are ten whole minutes with the Dr. and his human living-dead pat, hosted for you by a Google Inc. company. Thank you so very much Mr. BigBananaTV!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Movies that changed Cinema: Jaws - The First Blockbuster

On June 20, 1975 when Jaws was limitedly released at 409 theaters, followed by a wider release five days later into 675 theaters the word Blockbuster was still never used to describe a movie. American media needed a new word to describe what this movie did to people: Based on Peter Benchley's best-selling novel and inspired by a real event, audiences loved to be horrified by that movie so much that they were literally lined-up around street blocks, causing traffic jams, waiting to see it again and again.

Truly said, with films about aliens and dinosaurs, Spielberg is first and foremost a dreamer, and Alfred Hitchcock was the one to show us how much we love to be scarred. Yet, in the old world where people were still paying money to watch movies more than once Jaws will always be remembered as the one that showed us how much we are willing to pay to be afraid. “See it again, this time with your eyes open” said one of the movie advertisements and, indeed, some people had seen this movie much more than twice.

In his article The Summer Of Jaws, Ralph Grassi who was 11 years old when the movie hit the screens, tells about a guy named Vince Sculli who became known as "Joe Jaws" at the Blaker Theatre and was featured in the local press for seeing the movie 28 times. According to Grassi's story the two nightly performances at the 600 seat Blaker had sold out 28 consecutive times in its first two weeks. The photo above, taken in early July of 75', was published by AC Press and put online by Grassi who says his "life changed" when Jaws came to the Blaker Theatre:

“The build up of this movie overwhelmed me. The commercials alone had me bouncing off the walls with anticipation. Finally the moment had arrived... to wait in line with Mom and Dad for what seemed like forever. The line was the longest I had ever seen for a movie and the theatre was packed to capacity. I can still remember the nervous laughter of the audience after each gruesome death - their reactions carrying well into the next scene on the screen. I walked out of the theatre that night with a new agenda. School had just let out and I had the whole summer ahead of me to fantasize about sharks at the Jersey shore.”

On June 23, 1975, just three days after its official release, the phenomenal success of Spielberg's low-budget shark thriller made the Time cover. According to Wikipedia on its first weekend Jaws grossed more than $7 million, and was the top grosser for the following five weeks.

During its run in theaters, the Jaws beat the $89 million domestic rentals of the reigning box-office champion, The Exorcist - an Academy Award-winning horror thriller and one of the most profitable horror films of all time - and became the first film to reach more than $100 million in theatrical rentals. Eventually, Jaws grossed more than $470 million worldwide (around $1.85 billion in 2006 dollars) and was the highest grossing box-office hit until George Lucas' Star Wars was released two years later.

For a fantastic high-res flashback experience click the above US 1 One Sheet Original Movie Poster (27x41 ROLLED NEVER FOLDED) from that was available for you to purchase for $1595.00 until it was sold out. As they say, “Rolled originals DO EXIST!!” but “Almost impossible to find.”

Monday, July 30, 2007

From Sam Spade to Harry Callahan: Toughest Movie Characters of All Times

From Sam Spade to Harry Callahan: Toughest Movie Characters of All Times

From Walter Cameron and A.C. Abadie playing the sheriffs in Porters' The Great Train Robbery (1903) to Douglas Quaid in Verhoeven's Total Recall: the history of moving pictures is full of tough fellows and quite many tough dames. But who should be the one to be placed above them all? Who is THE toughest movie character of all times?

To begin with, allow me to establish my basic presumption that a clear male-female separation needs to be kept in such a contest... I was totally fascinated by Jamie Lee Curtis' character of the rookie female cup in Kathryn Bigelow's 1990 Blue Steel but we can't have this lady competing against Harry Callahan. We are just going to have to make a special tough-woman review.

1: Harry Callahan
  • Actor: Clint Eastwood
  • Movie: Dirty Harry (1971) and sequels

Who can argue with the most legendary tough-guy line in the history of motion pictures? the lines of the lines. The one that gave the .44 Magnum its notorious name, making it perhaps the most commonly known handheld weapon model in the history.

"Dirty" Harry Francis Callahan is a fictional San Francisco Police Department inspector in the films Dirty Harry (1971), Magnum Force (1973), The Enforcer (1976), Sudden Impact (1983), and The Dead Pool (1988) all played by one of my favorite tough guys Clint Eastwood. I vote for Harry Callahan as the number one tough character in the history of motion pictures.

2. Jeff Costello
  • Actor: Alain Delon
  • Movie: Le Samouraï (1967)

The nearly mute perfectionist hitman who "religiously adheres to a strict code of duty" in Jean-Pierre Melville's Le Samouraï is my second choice for the subject. Costello is not just tough. He is icy cold tough. He lives in a Spartan apartment whose interior contains a neatly arranged line of mineral water bottles, cigarettes on a bookcase, as well as a little bird in a gray cage in the middle of the room.

The film opens with a long take of Costello lying awake on his bed, smoking, as the following text appears on-screen, attributed to an ancient samurai writing entitled "The Book of Bushido", which Melville later on admitted to be completely fabricated:
"There is no solitude greater than the samurai's, unless perhaps it be that of a tiger in the jungle."

3. Roy 'Mad Dog' Earle
  • Actor: Humphrey Bogart
  • Movie: High Sierra (1941)

The robber gangster Roy 'Mad Dog' Earle was Raoul Walsh's tragic hero in an early heist film noir film written by John Huston and W.R. Burnett from a novel by Burnett. Starring Ida Lupino and Humphrey Bogart High Sierra was shot on location at Whitney Portal, halfway up Mount Whitney. The film has entered the motion picture pantheon for its climatic final scenes, as the cups pursue 'Mad Dog' Earle from Lone Pine up to the foot of the mountain before they kill him. My vote goes for Roy as the third toughest movie character of all times.

4. Marv
  • Actor: Mickey Rourke
  • Movie: Sin City (2005)

My favorite character in the Sin City (2005) movie adaptation and one of the
leading characters from the graphic novel series Sin City, created by Frank Miller. Marv works the streets of Basin City ("Sin City") performing jobs for people he feels deserve help. He can be very mean and extremely cruel when preforming his questioning routines with the assistance of his sawing tools and tourniquet set. Yet he usually does that to protect a lady so that gives him an additional point.

The 2005 neo-noir anthology film written, produced and directed by Miller and Robert Rodriguez was the first time for me to meet Marv. I must admit at the time I though this guy does it and gets my "toughest of the toughest" vote but now it gets a 4.

5. Jimmy "Popeye" Doyle
  • Actor: Gene Hackman
  • Movie: The French Connection (1971)

The Obsessive-Compulsive New York City police detective portrayed by Gene Hackman in The French Connection is a model for persistence and not letting anything taking you off your course.

Other than being really tough and preforming exceptional "running after the bad guys until they die" skills, The Jimmy "Popeye" Doyle character is actually based on a real life New York City detective named Eddie Egan. I bet Egan was tough as well.

6. Max Cady
  • Actor: Robert Mitchum, Robert De Niro
  • Movie: Cape Fear (1962), Cape Fear (1991)

Here is a guy you wouldn't like to get into an argument with. The villain of the John D. MacDonald's novel The Executioners, the 1962 film adaption Cape Fear and Scorsese's 1991 remake is definitely one of the meanest toughest hoods any of us had ever seen. If you haven't met this guy yet, believe me when I tell you he is tough. First played by Robert Mitchum and then again by Robert De Niro (in an Academy Award-nominated performance) in the remake, Max Cady ranked his way to the 28th place on the American Film Institute's list of the top 50 movie villains of all time.

According to Wikipedia, the scene where Mitchum attacks Polly Bergen's character on the houseboat was almost completely improvised. Mitchum rubbing the eggs on Bergen was not scripted and Bergan's reactions were real. Bergen suffered back injuries from being knocked around many times during this scene and "felt the impact of the 'attack' for days". Both Mitchum's and De Niro's characters are tough. Yet i vote for the Mitchum one. Being more realistic I find it more effective in my opinion.

7. Sam Spade
  • Actor: Humphrey Bogart
  • Movie: The Maltese Falcon (1930)

Created by Dashiell Hammett Sam Spade is the tough private eye of the 1930 novel The Maltese Falcon and the first film-noir movie ever made written and directed by John Huston. In those days there were not many tougher than Spade as played by Bogart. "Spade has no original. He is a dream man in the sense that he is what most of the private detectives I worked with would like to have been and in their cockier moments thought they approached." (Dashiell Hammett on Sam Spade)

8. Paul Kersey
  • Actor: Charles Bronson
  • Movie: Death Wish (1974) and sequels

Based on a 1972 novel by Brian Garfield Paul Kersey is the main character in the series of motion pictures all titled Death Wish; Death Wish (1974); Death Wish II (1982); Death Wish 3 (1985); Death Wish 4: The Crackdown (1987) and; Death Wish V: The Face of Death (1994).

Kersey was kind of a nice guy before he metamorphosed into a serial killer. It was quite a breakthrough in terms of the type of things a popular movie "hero" character can do and still have its sequels. Besides, Bronson was always tough and we can't have this list without at least one of the amazing characters he played.

  • Actor: Charles Bronson
  • Movie: Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)

An anonymous user which later on signed as Benjamin posted this comment to CultCase's From Sam Spade to Harry Callahan: toughest movie characters of all times article claiming Charles Bronson in Once upon a time in the west should have been be considered, too, as a "really tough" being an "(anti-)hero".

I love this film SO much that after watching this scene again I just had to do this gesture for both Benjamin and Charley. Even though Bronson's character name remains (to the best of my knowledge) unrevealed, it does have this supercool nickname "Harmonica", given to him by Frank (Henry Fonda).

If you find this article interesting you can check on my toughest movie characters playlist on YouTube as more videos are being added there every once in a while.