Saturday, December 4, 2021

SEVEN KEYS TO BALDPATE - "The Mansion Of Fear" (1947)

This week's Saturday Night Special is a story that some people think was interesting enough to make into a movie multiple times, and then even more.

"Seven Keys To Baldplate" was the very first novel written by Earl Derr Biggers, and was made into a film seven times, and two other times with a different title, but same basic story line. Earl Derr Biggers also created the character Charlie Chan, and seemed to have a fondness for the word key. Some of his other writings were titled "The House Without A Key," and "Keeper Of The Keys."

The star of this 1947 version is Phillip (The Leech Woman) Terry as mystery writer Kenneth Magee. It's a cold night and he's on a train headed to Baldpate, a resort in the middle of nowhere. Baldpate is supposed to be vacant for the winter, but the owner, a Mr. Bentley, has given him a key, because they have a bet that he can't write a story in one night without being scared off.

There's a lot of this!

At first I thought it was going to be like "The Shining."

Magee arrives at the train station. Makes me cold just looking at it.

The station master is reading one of Magee's books, but doesn't like it that much because he thinks there should be more "shooting," and not so much "thinking' and talking."

The station master gives Magee instructions on how to get to Baldpate. The station master was played by Erville (The Feathered Serpent) Alderson. Erville had a whopping 214 credits to his name.

When Magee arrives at Baldpate, he finds out that it is not as vacant as he was told. He's greeted by the not so friendly Eduardo (Monster From Green Hell) Ciannelli as Cargan, who says he is the caretaker.

Gee Whiz, and I thought I had the only key!

The original title of the story Magee is writing was "A Key To Baldpate," but he decides in a hurry to change the name to "Three Keys To Baldpate," as more and more characters keep showing up.

This krazy olde galoot lives down the road, and crawls through the window in Magee's room. He wants to steal Magee's fancy typewiter so he can write a book about why he hates women. He's known as Pete The Hermit, and was played by Jimmy (Dick Tracy's Dilemma) Conlin.

This is Jacqueline (Movie Pests) White as Mr. Bentley's secretary Mary Jordan. She was sent to Baldpate to help setup Magee for a scare, and keep him occupied so he won't have time to write. She calls her boss to tell him that all is going well, but that she didn't know there were going to be other people there. Mr. Bentley tells her he didn't hire anybody else, and suddenly they both know something isn't right. Jacqueline White just turned 99 about two weeks ago on November 23.

Unfortunately for Mary Jordan, Magee overheard her call, so no matter what she says now, he's not going to believe her whether it's true or not. Behind them is Arthur (Daughter of Dr. Jekyll) Shields as another character with a key, a Professor Bolton.

I probably should have shown you more of the characters who show up with keys, but I just like this shot of Cargan and Mary Jordan's face to face.

Magee's getting a big kick out of all the character's performances, and is feeling pretty smug thinking it's all fake, and not knowing that everything happening around him is real, and that he's in great danger!

Friday, December 3, 2021

CURSE OF THE VAMPIRE / Monster Kid Home Movies - 2003

Blogger was totally screwy while trying to get these photos up, machen mir sehr BOZE!! Well anyway, here's a cute little Monster Kid Home Movie Xmas stuffer from the Tinnell family, who were doing these movies in the seventies. Looks like the Monster Kids have their own now.

So, this little vampire girl is out in the daylight looking for some tasty new victims, she's coming for your blood to be sure!!

And it just so happens that two girls in their house notice the vampire standing outside.

The smallest girl calls to her mom in the other room... Mom, there's a vampire outside!

And of course mom yells back... There's no such thing as vampires!

So, what are the two girls s'pos ta do, anyway? They go outside and big sis yells to the vampire... Hey, we're tired of you vampires coming around here, so, go away!

But the vampire girl just chuckles to herself, until...

The girl pulls out a trusty old cross to save the day, and send her away!

Ugh, that smarts!!

And she diskappears unto the void...

The girls run back into the house, ready to keep the vampires out of their neighborhood, since the stupid grownups don't believe in Monsters!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

ALCATRAZ - "Only That's Not What Happened" (2012)

 "Alcatraz" was a TV show from 2012 that lasted for thirteen episodes. I've watched five or six so far, and I still haven't figured out whether I like it or not. And that's the reason it's this week's Weird Wednesday feature.

We went to Alcatraz a few years ago. This is what it looks like on this show.
It doesn't look near as ominous when the sun is out. 
It's really a remarkable place, and well worth visiting if you're ever in "the city by the bay," and the bonus is, there's no homeless people on the rock.

Supposedly when they closed the prison in 1963, they transferred all the prisoners someplace else, but that's not what really happened!

Now they are all showing up in the present day hellbent on death and destruction, with no knowledge of where they've been or why they're acting the way they are.

The main characters are a strange amalgamation that include Sarah (Sons Of Anarchy) Jones as Detective Rebecca Madsen.

Detective Madsen picks comic book store owner Dr. Diego Soto as her partner, not because he has any crime fighting experience, but because he is an authority on Alcatraz. Jorge (Lost) Garcia has the role of the good Doctor.

And then there's Sam (Jurassic Park) Neil as Emerson Hauser, a fellow who you don't know whether you can trust or not. Six episodes in, and I'm still not sure of his alliances.

That's the main crew, but there are a bunch of peripheral characters who flesh out the cast, like Johnny (Nightcrawler) Coyne, as The Warden Edwin James, who is a cross between Ed Asner, Al Bundy, and Benito Mussolini.

I'm pretty sure Doctor Milton Beauregard as played by Leon (Eight Legged Freaks) Rippy is the one responsible for most of the nonsense that's going on.

Paraminder (Intergalactic) Nagra is Dr. Lucy Banerjee, and is in every episode, but in the last four I watched, she was in a coma.
Robert (Twin Peaks) Forster is Ray Archer and is about as natural actor as you can find. He just looks like somebody you know, maybe his 189 credits have something to do with it. Robert just passed away in 2019 at the age of 78

To complicate things even more, Detective Madsen finds out that her Grandfather Tommy Madsen was one of the convicts who has returned, and is also the man she's hunting for killing her partner in the first episode. David (Crossbones) Hoflin plays Tommy Madsen.

Just for the record, in between the joking around, this is a very violent show, and all the prisoners are very mean spirited!

This is why Lucy is in a coma! 
 It's not real smart to stand in front of a window when you're on the trail of a sniper with a high powered rifle.

Without a doubt, Detective Madsen has got her work cut out for her!

Here's a couple more pictures I took in 2009.

This is one of the views the prisoners would have had!

Monday, November 29, 2021

THE THREE STOOGES In "The Cookoo Cavaliers - 1940

Here's one of my favorite Stooges short, when the boys fail at fish peddling, they seek another job. They end up buying a beauty salon south of the border thinking they were getting a saloon instead. Maybe they could have made it with as saloon owners, but a beauty salon?!

Here are our guys out trying to sell fish they've had in the back of the van for a whole month, and haven't even sold one!

A potential customer wants them to toss a fish up to her, so Curly goes to the back and opens the door. He nearly faints from the smell so uses a gas mask to grab one.

Of course Curly hits her right in the face with the rotten fish! She throws it back at them.

Fed up, they want to try their hand at something else, and decide that a saloon would be the answer. But when they make the deal, Curly tells the broker Pedro Ruiz that among other things, the saloon needs to be beautiful. They give Pedro $300 for the place and head across the border. Realizing they made a mistake, they try and make the best of it.

Manuel Gonzales brings four of his showgirls over to their shop to get the girls' hair bleached to blonde. OMG! Nooooooooooo!

Rosita says she wants a mud face so Larry goes out to find some mud, but what he mistakes for mud is... Concrete!

It takes all three brainiacs to prepare the facial for Rosita.

Larry trying to pull the concrete off her face is just hilarious.

They have no idea how to get the piece of stone off of their victim...

A little mallet didn't work, so, maybe a big mallet will do the trick, and it does!

Rosita gets up from the chair and stumbles away, with Curly yelling... Hey, we didn't finish! Oh well, they grab the other three girls and get their transformations underway.

Rule number one of owning a beauty salon, never look at the bottles to see what's in them!

Then, mix all the ingredients together and pour it into a bellows.

And then, let Curley have it!

So, the girls have hot towels on their heads when Manuel comes back with Rosita and threatens the boys with his pistol.

Moe tells him, Rosita was an accident, just wait until he gets a gander of what the other girls look like! Manuel puts his gun away to take a look...

It's not a pretty sight, so the Stooges run out the door and into the street.

On his way out, Manuel hits the door frame and a number of bottles come crashing down on his head, and he's out of commission.

The girls come out of the salon and do some target practicing on our moronic pals! Well, that does it for November, we're back on Wednesday with more from The Dungeon!!..

Monster Music

Monster Music
AAARRGGHHH!!!! Ya'll Come On Back Now, Y'Hear??