DID YOU READ

Portland’s forgotten movie history, from B to Z to WTF?

Portland’s forgotten movie history, from B to Z to WTF? (photo)

Posted by on

Portland loves wallowing in crap.

At least, its moviegoers do. From regular screenings of Tommy Wiseau’s cult disasterpiece “The Room” at Cinema 21 to the Hollywood Theatre’s monthly B-Movie Bingo series, this is a city that appreciates Z-grade cinema. It’s not just hipster irony, either. Low-budget, creatively questionable filmmaking has a long, dubious history in the Rose City. With all due respect to Gus Van Sant, Portland independent film does not begin and end with Drugstore Cowboy. It’s just that a lot of the other movies to come out of here have not been — how shall I put this? — good. Or not good enough to remain in the public consciousness very long, anyway.

But quality should never be a burden to entertainment. Portland’s forgotten films deserve rediscovery — if for no other reason than they’re incredibly fun to mock. We enlisted critic, filmmaker, blogger and local schlock movie historian David Walker to help dig up just a few of these hidden turds…er, sorry, “treasures.” Track ’em down if you dare.

Courier of Death (1984)

Plot: A courier (Joey Johnson) overnights packages of certified vengeance to the gangsters who killed his wife, all while wearing a sweet Canadian tuxedo.

David Walker: “This is the work of Tom Shaw, considered by many to be the Ed Wood of Portland. Shaw only made two complete feature films, but he owned a ton of equipment which was used on many other films, including the early works of Gus Van Sant. Much of Shaw’s money came from porn, as he owned several porn theaters in the area during the 1970s.”

What the Internet Says: “This movie could have also been called “Stupid Conversations in a Small Plane”!” – www.deathindustries.com


Ironheart (1992)

Plot: A kung-fu fighting L.A. cop infiltrates a Portland sex trafficking ring in order to avenge his partner’s death.

Walker: “This stars Britton Lee, a local martial arts instructor who also executive produced the film. His brother Julian also made Fatal Revenge several years earlier, but that film never went anywhere, as opposed to Ironheart, which beat a hasty retreat to the world of direct-to-VHS.”

What the Internet Says:
“Tough uncompromising martial arts trained cop turns up, speaks bad english and does stuff that does not make sense. Its utter tripe. But he does have a nice car.” – IMDB.com


Brain Smasher…A Love Story (1993)

Plot: Andrew Dice Clay, in the unawaited followup to 1990’s Adventures of Ford Fairlane, plays a nightclub bouncer protecting Teri Hatcher from ninjas who are actually monks, or something.

Walker: “This was made here during the height of the early ’90s filmmaking boom, which included films like The Temp, Dr. Giggles, Hear No Evil, Frozen Assets, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3, Free Willy, and a bunch of other stuff.”

What the Internet Says: “It has a little of everything in it. Love, romance, guys in masks, large, scary strippers, ultimate power, and that one chick whose name I can never remember.” – Amazon.com


Unhinged (1982)

Plot: College girls on their way to a jazz festival get caught in a rainstorm, take shelter in a creepy old mansion and — as usually happens to college girls in creepy old mansions — get killed off one by one. Lesson: Don’t listen to jazz.

Walker: “Written, produced and directed by Don Gronquist, this is one of those early 1980s horror films that benefited from the explosion of home video. I heard it was banned in England, but that’s still just a rumor. Gronquist wrote and produced Rockaday Richie & the Queen of the Hop in 1973, the first all-Portland production to land an international distribution deal.”

What the Internet Says: “I dozed off at one point, but sat bolt upright with eyes wide when the second shower scene rolled around. Alas, alack, these are mere links in an overall rusty chain that is Unhinged, which comes off as part Bluebeard, part Sleepaway Camp, part Psycho and all garbage.” – www.worldsgreatestcritic.com

Watch More
Brockmire-103-banner-4

Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

Posted by on

He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”


Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

Watch More
Brockmire_101_tout_2

Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

Posted by on
GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”


But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

Watch More
Brockmire-Sam-Adams-great-effing-beer

Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

Posted by on

From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.

via GIPHY

It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

Watch More
Powered by ZergNet