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May 23, 2006

Video Tapeworm Releases through Tuesday, May 30

THIS WEEK’S TWIN PEEKS:DRIVE-IN MOVIE DOUBLE FEATURE:CREATION OF THE HUMANOIDS/WAR BETWEEN THE PLANETS2006; DVD $14.95, URA pair of talky drive-in haunters from The Golden Age. “Creation” is the better of the two — very cerebral with no real action. In a post-atomic apocalypse, Mankind turns to automated robots to help them rebuild, but the robots may be smarter than the people, and much more selfless. “War” is a laughably forgettable Spaghetti Space-opera starring Giacomo Rossi-Stuart, but it makes a good B-feature if you’ve still got popcorn left.HERCULES/MOLE MEN AGAINST THE SON OF HERCULES2006; DVD $19.99, URThe first flick, “Hercules,” is the terrific 1958 Steve Reeves version with voluptuous vixens, Jason and the Argonauts, and the Cretan Bull — this is the movie that spawned the 30-year sword-and-sandal cine-epoch! The second one, “Mole Men,” has been released under at least six titles previously, but is still one of our favorite bad movies with Mark Forest battling Afro-haired albinos from the Earth’s core and soldiers who fall off their horses whenever the hero rides in their direction! Terribly entertaining; a terrific pair for the price.DATE MOVIE2006; VHS Rental/DVD $29.99, PG-13A scattershot spoof of date flicks from some of the guys who brought you “Scary Movie.” Alyson “One Time, At Band Camp ...” Hannigan stars with Fred Willard, Eddie Griffin, Carmen Electra and a bunch of comic wannabes.DAVE BARRY’S COMPLETE GUIDE TO GUYS: THE MOVIE2005; DVD $26.95, URDave’s previous attempts at film (“Big Trouble,” “Recipe for Disaster”) were simply dreadful, which is odd considering that the books were terrific! Continuing the trend, this one is so bad it never received a theatrical distribution; or, as one festival reviewer put it, “It’ll go straight to video because it’s too big to fit down the toilet!” We’ve seen worse, but Barry has a good movie in him somewhere, we just KNOW it!JOHN WAYNE: AN AMERICAN ICON COLLECTION2006; DVD $26.98, URThere have been several good Duke box sets released already; this one focuses on films that aren’t exactly A-listers, but feature Wayne in unique roles. Includes “Seven Sinners” and “Pittsburgh,” both with Marlene Dietrich, “The Shepherd of the Hills,” “The Conqueror” with Wayne as Genghis Khan (shot on an A-bomb test site that gave cancer to much of the crew!) and “Jet Pilot” with Janet Leigh as a Soviet flyer!NIGHT STALKER: THE COMPLETE SERIES2005; DVD $29.95, URNot the great old “Kolchak” series starring Darren McGavin as a serio-comic journalist and predecessor to the “X-Files” from 1974, this is the short-lived updating from 2005 starring Stuart Townsend and Gabrielle Union. Gone is the self-effacing humor and broad physical comedy (not to mention the wealth of great old Bortsch Belt cameos). This tried so hard NOT to be the old series that it never found its own niche; ABC (as in the original) cancelled it much too soon.NUMB3RS: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON2005; DVD $54.95, URWe have a friend who’s a bona fide professional mathematician, and he says that this show is pure fantasy, that not a single one of the fabulous numerical insights that David Krumholtz provides in fighting crime are realistic. Yes, the math could lead to ideas, but not in the instantaneous manner and 100 percent certainty that the show presents. But then, he’s a dweeb and won’t lend us any money. We still like the show if only because it co-stars Judd Hirsch. A four-disc set.OH! CALCUTTA!1972; DVD $26.95, XWe remember sneaking into the Theat-Air-X drive-in to see this sex-skit comedy back in ’73. It had boobs. Lots of boobs. Big ones, little ones, floppy ones ... lots of floppy ones. And ya-yas and winkies and more than a few outstanding woo-woos. It’s a static-camera shooting of the infamous “nudie musical review” from Broadway that encouraged the audience to get nekkid and get their freak on with cast members in the big finale. Would rate a strong PG-13 today, or maybe a weak R; stars no one you ever heard of except for Bill Macy, who blushes every time someone mentions it. Our highest recommendation!ROLLERGIRLS: THE COMPLETE SEASON ONE2006; DVD $39.95, URErroneously called a “reality show” by some, this documentary series from A&E about the women who make a living as rollerballers in Austin, Texas, is a hoot. What’s Rollerball? Teams of women skate around a circuit, with points scored whenever one member punches her way through the other’s line. It’s a stand-up chick-fight on roller skates, and the women who “play” this “sport” are worth getting to know.SINGAPORE SLING1990; DVD $29.95, UROne seriously demented flick from Greece. A private eye, obsessed with finding a woman from his past, discovers a pair of women hiding a dead body. They enslave him and perform unspeakable sexual acts with him, taking the viewer on a hellish ride of discovery involving the interconnected nature of sex and death. Powerful and disturbing.THE BUNKER2001; DVD $14.95, URAnthony Hopkins won an Emmy for his portrayal of Adolf Hitler during the last 105 days of the Third Reich. Broken, yet still dangerous, he considers how history will remember his final choice: surrender or suicide.THE LON CHANEY JR. COLLECTION2006; DVD $19.95, URLon Jr., the lovably alcoholic and untalented son of The Man With A Thousand Faces, will always be remembered as Larry Talbot, The Wolfman. But he did create a number of other special characters, captured in the four films of this box set. Includes “Manfish,” a sort-of “Tell Tale Heart” on board a fishing boat with Victor Jory; a new pressing of the rarely seen straight-up drama “The Golden Junkman”; the crime-thriller “Lock-Up” starring Macdonald Carey; and, best of all, a pristine, newly-sourced version of “The Indestructible Man.” That final entry is worth the price of the set by itself!OTHER DVDS OF INTERESTALF: SEASON THREE1988; DVD $39.95, URDAN AYKROYD: UNPLUGGED ON UFOS2005; DVD $19.95, URMARILYN MONROE: 80TH ANNIVERSARY COLLECTION2006; DVD $49.98, URROBERT ANTON WILSON: MAYBE LOGIC2006; DVD $19.95, URTHE VENTURE BROS: SEASON ONE2004; DVD $29.95, URA more complete listing and free vids at www.videotapeworm.com