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V.21 No.10 | 3/8/2012

Idiot Box

Møb Rüle

“Lilyhammer” on Netflix

On March 1, the Internet streaming service Netflix lost its contract with Starz. This means the service no longer has access to a whole host of popular movies such as Toy Story 3, Tron and Scarface. Executives at the beleaguered company (remember the whole Qwikster debacle?) say this is no big deal, as Netflix subscribers now spend upwards of 80 percent of their time downloading TV series. Yup, Netflix is usurping TiVo as the preferred method for television watching.

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news

The Daily Word in Mitt wins Florida, Colbert raises more than Palin and New Mexico's newest gang

Mitt Romney won Florida's Republican primary last night. Newt Gingrich isn't giving up (yet).

Chicago's draconian eavesdropping law poses problems for protestors and journalists at the upcoming G-8 summit.

Traffic crackdown in Rio Rancho.

New Mexico has a new prison gang with a lame name.

In response to an invasive abortion law, a Virginia state senator proposed an amendment requiring men seeking erectile dysfunction drugs to receive a rectal exam and stress tests.

Meet the monkey refugees of Louisiana.

Louis CK sold a sitcom to CBS.

Netflix won't be renting games after all.

DC Comics unveils its long-rumored line of Watchmen prequel comics. I wonder what Watchman co-creator Alan Moore thinks about it? "As far as I know … there weren't that many prequels or sequels to Moby Dick."

What does an artist with Alzheimer's paint?

Stephen Colbert's fake Super PAC raised more money than Sarah Palin's Super PAC.

Everything is cool guys, that red river in Texas was just polluted with pig blood.

SHEEP CYCLONE!!!!

Where did the Frito pie really come from?

Every overhead hand shot from Wes Anderson films.

Check out this recently discovered test footage from a proposed 1936 John Carter of Mars animated movie.

When I'm President this fake Breaking Bad RPG will be real.

Of these three trailers for returning HBO shows, I am excited about them in this order: Game of Thrones, Eastbound And Down and True Blood.

Completely mesmerized by this video.

Happy Birthday Garrett Morris!!!

NEWS

The Daily Word in Tebow and his Broncos, flea market busts, faulty bungee cords.

Tebow leads Broncos to a 29-23 win over the Steelers in the shortest OT in NFL history.

UK Netflix launch may trigger TV bidding war.

More snow.

Texas drought may wipe out the world's last remaining whooping crane population.

2012's Republican humor.

The United States of Scary Things.

Albuquerque police and federal agents bust vendors at weekend flea market.

UK police identify remains found in Queen Elizabeth II's front yard.

Painful truths about your iPhone.

Man found dead outside of Graham Central Station.

Bungee cord snaps and sends girl plummeting into crocodile-infested waters.

Denis Hoth Hof is opening up a sci-fi themed whorehouse north of Las Vegas to be called Alien Cathouse.

Horse abandoned at Amish-area Walmart up for adoption.

One reason not to lose weight in 2012.

Marlborobot.

New study suggests that dogs can read our facial expressions.

Tourists in Pisa, Italy think they're super original.

Thanks to Uncles Carl and Tom for sending me amusing content!

news

The Daily Word in a close caucus, quasicrystals and zombie bees

Close one in Iowa last night.

Bachmann is out, Perry is reassessing.

Is it now OK for presidential candidates to cry?

New interchange design for I-25/US 550 unveiled.

Teen run over in Rio Rancho Hastings parking lot.

How much money does Sesame Street make?

Bandai Entertainment, one of the major companies involved in bringing anime to America is closing its doors.

Hybrid sharks found off the coast of Australia.

Facebook hands out White Hat debit cards to friendly hackers.

Should smokers who roll their own have to pay the full cigarette tax?

The only known naturally occurring quasicrystal is actually part of a meteorite.

Top 10 worst women of 2011.

Yeti crab is one of the new creatures discovered near Antarctic hot springs.

George Leutz's third attempt at a Q*Bert world record fails.

Dennis Rodman is starting a topless basketball team.

Hey, what's under that woman's dress?

Snoop stops smoking long enough to help a lady win a car on The Price Is Right.

Happy New Year 2012!

Trailer for Steven Van Zandt's new Netflix-exclusive series Lilyhammer.

The 11 best comics of 2011 were …

What's worse than bees? How about zombie bees!

These Christian kids just fixed your favorite song.

Welcome to The Obliteration Room.

Year-long exposure of the Toronto skyline is pretty sweet.

R.I.P. British cartoonist Ronald Searle.

Happy Birthday Yoshimoto Nara!!!

Thanks Constance!

Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Circus of Horrors

Halloween Countdown Edition

Circus of Horrors (1960)

Directed by Sidney Hayers

Cast: Anton Diffring, Erika Remberg, Yvonne Monlaur, Donald Pleasence, Jane Hylton, Kenneth Griffith, Conrad Phillips, Jack Gwillim, Vanda Hudson, Colette Wilde, William Mervyn

Play Youtube Video
Are you an insane plastic surgeon on the run for pursuing your unethical experiments? Have you directed your own facial reconstructive surgery in a mirror using only a local anesthesic? Do you enjoy dallying with the lovely ladies whose deformed features your skill has made whole again? Are you willing to cut down anyone in your path who dares defy your iron will? Well, have you ever considered running a circus?

Spoiler alert!
Spoiler alert!
Hawk-faced Anton Diffring (Fahrenheit 451, The Blue Max) excels as the cruel, oddly sympathetic and totally bonkers Dr. Schüler (or is it Rossiter?), mad doctor turned circus master, in this outrageous, non-supernatural, vibrantly technicolor horror film (from the producers of Michael Powell’s notorious Peeping Tom). The ridiculousness of the scenario (Schüler collects scarred criminalsmostly womenheals them and binds them to perpetual service in his circus) is made compelling by its twisted character studies, particularly the doctor’s toady-like accomplices (Kenneth Griffith and Jane Hylton) who seethe with mixed worship and revulsion for their master. Hurried exposition (especially at the beginning) and laughable animal costumery detract only slightly from psychodrama, blood and intrigue. Great actual circus performances and a genuine pop hit (“Look for a Star”) round out the lurid entertainment.

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Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): The Legend of Hell House

Halloween Countdown Edition

The Legend of Hell House (1973)

Directed by John Hough

Cast: Clive Revill, Gayle Hunnicutt, Peter Bowles, Roddy McDowall, Roland Culver, Pamela Franklin

Play Youtube Video
For this ludicrous-yet-effective haunted house film, Richard Matheson adapted his own down-and-dirty novel for the screen, somehow managing to create a reasonable PG version from the NC-17 source material. The scenario is very deliberately a sexed-up ’70s remix of Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House (not Hell House, got it?), itself filmed quite effectively in 1961 as The Haunting.

Some of that nice composition I was talking about.
Some of that nice composition I was talking about.
The setup is archetypal. Four quirky characters investigate a haunted house: The physicist and his wife (Clive Revill and Gayle Hunnicutt), the touchy-feely medium (Pamela Franklin, formerly haunted as a child actress in The Innocents) and the sole survivor of a previous expedition (Roddy McDowall). The cast is great and utters potentially clunky lines about “ectoplasm” and “multiple hauntings” with so much in-character authority that they totally work.

Ditto.
Ditto.
My previous VHS viewing of this film did not include the pleasure of beholding the awesome wide-angle, widescreen frame composition employed throughout (and especially during the opening sequences). Creepy exterior shots of the fogbound house with datestamps presage each supernatural incident, creating both quickie verisimilitude and a rhythm of suspense. The general aura of competency and classplus Delia Derbyshire/Brian Hodgson’s extra-delicious electronic scoremakes Hell House an excellent Halloween A/V treat. (Well, aside from the overwrought ending.) I watched it twice.

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Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Deathdream, a.k.a. Dead of Night

Halloween Countdown Edition

Deathdream (1974)

Directed by Bob Clark

Cast: John Marley, Lynn Carlin, Richard Backus, Henderson Forsythe

Play Youtube Video
This low-budget riff on the W.W. Jacobs short story “The Monkey’s Paw” begins where the original ends: Instead of wishing the undead son away, his family invites him in. Sure, he seems a little weird, preferring to sit silently in his room all day and waiting for dark before he emerges with mod sunglasses and white turtleneck to prey upon the living. But that’s how it is when you’ve been dragged back from the grave by a mother’s love.

“Everything's fine, Bob.”
“Everything's fine, Bob.”
Director Bob Clark (himself now one of the undead) made a handful of notable indie horror films in the ’70s (not to mention an all-star Sherlock Holmes vs. Jack the Ripper flick) before hitting box office paydirt with Porky’s and A Christmas Story. Much of the credit for Deathdream’s effectiveness must go to screenwriter (and monster-makeup artist) Alan Ormsby for creating a queasy sense of doom, Richard Backus who rocks it as the deadpan, unwillingly-revived son, as well as actors John Marley and Lynn Carlin for convincingly transplanting their troubled-married-couple routine from John Cassavetes’ 1968 film Faces into this weird little horror movie. How long can a family stay together under these conditions? Answer: not long. The downer ending manages to be both sad and horrifying, the lesson of the Monkey’s Paw learned the hard way.

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Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Daughters of Darkness

Halloween Countdown Edition

Daughters of Darkness (1971)

Directed by Harry Kümel

Cast: Delphine Seyrig, Andrea Rau, Danielle Ouimet, John Karlen, Fons Rademakers

Play Youtube Video
This truly strange Belgian vampire film (original title Les Lèvres Rouges or The Red Lips) oozes style, dread and languid sensuality, not to mention an unhinged sense of humor. The dreamlike scenario: Newlywed innocentsor maybe not-so-innocentsStefan (John Karlen, from TV’s then-smash-hit “Dark Shadows”) and Valerie (Danielle Ouimet) decide to linger in an opulent beachside hotel when their train is delayed. Too bad it’s the middle of winter and the only other guests are the glamorous Countess Bathory (Delphine Seyrig, The Day of the Jackal, Last Year at Marienbad) and her sultry personal assistant Ilona. Before you can say “Carmilla” the oh-so-charming Countess infiltrates herself into the lovers’ troubled honeymoon and encourages the emergence of Stefan’s barely-suppressed dark side. (Just what is he hiding about his mother, anyhow?) You know what happens next.

The Countess approaches.
The Countess approaches.
The glorious, desolate backdrop of an off-season resort is almost a character in itself, swallowing up the machinations and psychodramas of the tiny cast of good-looking vampires and victims. Extra points also awarded for smashing ’70s fashions, slick editing, inspired location shooting (done entirely after dark or at dusk), letting the foreign actors dub their own lines, and a sinister-yet-groovy score from French soundtrack composer François de Roubaix. Unlike other lesbian vampire films from the same time period (cough Jess Franco cough), Daughters of Darkness is an intelligent, warped pleasure, equal parts art and exploitation film. The HD version on Netflix is terrific, the very definition of eye candy.

More Videos

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Look mom, no head!

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New Chinese opera about the 1911 revolution must not use the word revolution.

Paul McCartney still has enough money to get married.

RIP Weezer bassist Miley Welsh.

Send this to your dirtbag friends.

Beware the deadly hot dog thrower.

I wish I had an alligator bike.

How does Japanese art of the 1700s stack up against Europe’s?

What shall I read next?

Mathematicians reveal the newest imaginary number.

The boss tried to call.

I-25 was shut down for a jumper.

A toddler was shot in the head with a pellet gun.

Beware the mailbox bomber.

Happy birthday, David Lee Roth.

Thanks to Nayder and Moss for the link assists.

NEWS

The Daily Word in Locksley boot, affirmative action brownies, and Amazon's latest technology.

Brought to you by the artist formerly known as the US Space Program.

Mike Locksley gets canned after loss to Sam Houston State.

Albuquerque teen gets arrested for burping in class.

Casino shooting leaves Hells Angels leader dead and two others injured.

City acquires some more balloon landin' land.

NASA's dead satellite takes its fall.

Earth-shattering news about Catwoman's mask.

Controversy erupts over affirmative action bake sale at Berkley.

Doesn't this guy know you aren't supposed to try to reenact movie premises that involve having to cut off your own limbs?

Neil Armstrong labels the US Space Program as "embarrassing".

So what did we get from the US Space Program?

Amazon gets ready to release new tablet, Apple is actually a bit worried.

Bathroom graffiti responses.

The Oatmeal on the Netflix changes.

Man calls police during a 30-mile chase Thursday to tell them that deputies "needed to leave him alone."

Princess Bride Monopoly Board!

NEWS

The Daily Word in debt plans, weird DWIs, and the Primetime Emmys.

Albuquerque shooting suspect has bond set at $1 million cash.

Obama unveils new deficit plan.

White House brews its first beer.

Alec Baldwin gets replaced by Spock Leonard Nemoy for Emmy opening.

In case you missed the Emmys, check here for winners and outtakes and such.

Who wore it better? Donald Trump or this puppy?

Political daughters Kara Kennedy and Eleanor Mondale both die within 24 hours of each other.

Albuquerque man gets nabbed for drunk driving after flipping off police officers, stopping to take a potty break, and then getting pelted with a bean bag gun.

Meanwhile, a Pennsylvania man faces DWI and assault charges for drunken tractor-riding.

You can give your grandparents a web cam... and they might make an adorable video on accident.

Netflix fully separates DVD and streaming services, DVD service gets a new name.

This video actually gets me a little emotional every time I watch it.

Did you know that water bears can survive 10 days in the vacuum of space and then reproduce?

Heroic Alaskan bunny saves owners from house fire, but is not so lucky himself.

Cat scans.

news

The Daily Word in deadbeat parents, 9/11 truthers, a lost masterpiece and the greatest photo of Saturn ever!

Dozens of deadbeat parents arrested this week.

Of course the CIA worked with Gaddafi.

Yahoo fires its CEO.

Five dead after shooting rampage at Nevada IHOP.

Poor Gary Johnson.

When will 9/11 conspiracy theorists believe the facts? Probably never.

Cell phones in prisons are on the rise.

Is Homeland Security making us safer or poorer?

More bad news for Netflix users.

Why using your real name on the Internet is a bad idea.

Lizards are smarter than we thought.

The greatest photo of Saturn you'll ever see.

What is graph theory, and how can we make some freaking money with it?

In order to find a lost Leonardo Da Vinci masterpiece, scientists need a camera that hasn't been invented yet.

Wikileaks reveals government plans to infiltrate warez topsites.

More Game of Thrones casting news.

Judge dismisses lawsuits against 5010 of the 5011 people accused of downloading the porno Danielle Staub Raw.

Let's all have a good laugh at the MPAA's latest bogus piracy stats.

Whatever happens, do not give Madonna hydrangeas.

Lame looking UFO video from Japan.

R.I.P. Uncle Frank.

You guys probably care which fast food restaurants were rated the highest by Zagat, right?

How the invention of pants ushered us into the modern world.

America's Most Wanted moves to Lifetime?

Katt Wiliams: patriotic or racist?

Happy Birthday Michael Emerson!!!

Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction

Notable Tarantino classics from the Netflix Watch Instantly world

Reservoir Dogs
Reservoir Dogs

Reservoir Dogs (1992)

Directed by Quentin Tarantino

Cast: Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Steve Buscemi, Chris Penn, Lawrence Tierney, Edward Bunker, Quentin Tarantino, Randy Brooks, Kirk Baltz

Quentin Tarantino's directorial debut is a one-of-a-kind violent, profane, macho epic. When a discreetly-planned robbery gets botched, newcomer Mr. White (Harvey Keitel), professional Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi), stern Mr. Blonde (Michael Madsen), dying Mr. Orange (Tim Roth), and vice-mastermind Nice Guy Eddie (Chris Penn) agree that there is a mole in the group, and start a bloody guessing game to unveil who it might be. Reservoir Dogs, in all its filthy glory, is cleverly and humorously written. The cast, despite being a sausage-fest of an ensemble, delivers tough, believable, solid performances. The story, despite being slightly complicated, is unique, smart and innovative. And Tarantino, despite being renowned for having a fetish for brutality, brings a plentitude of class and thrill to the filmfrom the stylistic opening to the jaw-dropping ending. An almostif not completelyperfect masterpiece. HD Available.

Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Heartbreaker, Welcome

Notable romantic French titles from the Netflix Watch Instantly world

Heartbreaker
Heartbreaker

Heartbreaker (2010)

Directed by Pascal Chaumeil

Cast: Romain Duris, Vanessa Paradis, Julie Ferrier, François Damiens, Helena Noguerra, Andrew Lincoln, Jacques Frantz, Amandine Dewasmes

Romain Duris (The Beat That My Heart Skipped) and Vanessa Paradis (The Girl on the Bridge) star in director Pascal Chaumeil's feature directorial debut. Alex (Duris), an indebted con artist who breaks couples up for a living, is hired by a rich entrepreneur to prevent his daughter Juliette (Paradis) from marrying her fiance. The expert heartbreaker then struggles through the hardest challenge of his career, as he slowly realizes that he has already fallen in love with his subject. Not just your regular chick-flick, Heartbreaker features an original story and compelling performances from the leads. Duris' gentlemanly mojo perfectly complements Paradis' independent spirit. The scenes are also cleverly written and shot, with stylish lines and catchy sequencing. But most exceptionally, Heartbreaker isn't showered with generous amounts of cliché and cheesiness. That's like lifetime achievement for a rom-com. In French with English subtitles. HD Available.

Tomorrow's Events

Fundraiser to support the efforts of the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center and the initiatives of the Pueblo Council of Governors.

Above the East China Sea at Bookworks

Whiskey Business Karaoke! at Blackbird Buvette

More Recommented Events ››
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