08 October 2011

October 8th

The Munsters: "Munster the Magnificent" (1965) directed by Norman Abbott
I popped this in and Li'l K immediately ran from the room.  "I don't want to watch this show," she told me, probably thinking Herman was going to be as scary as the real Frankenstein.  But, I knew better.  I let the show run and she slowly crept back into the room, her curiosity outweighing her fear.  She positioned herself behind the couch in order to hide if needed and peaked at the antics of the funny monsters onscreen.  Once she saw Herman trying and failing to perform corny magic tricks, I think she got it.  At the end of the episode, Li'l K gave The Munsters her personal thumbs up: "Can we watch one more?"

The Munsters: "Lily Munster - Girl Model" (1965) directed by Earl Bellamy
So we did.  In this one, Lily Munster is bored being a housewife and decides to get a job, much to Herman and Grandpa's consternation.  She improbably finds one as a model for fashion designer Laszlo (played by Harry Mudd himself, Roger C. Carmel) and we're treated to seeing Lily actually wear different clothes for once.  Though, I have to say it's weird to have her parade around in go-go boots and a leopard print top.  Figuring Lily would be getting all kinds of male attention with her new job, Herman and Grandpa scheme to make her jealous.  So, clearly, the only thing to do is to transform Grandpa into a hot girl to pretend to be Herman's girlfriend at a fashion show.  It's all incredibly messed up, but worth watching to see the pretty lady talk with Al Lewis' voice.

Hannibal (2001) directed by Ridley Scott
Weird.  My first thought is that this was an amusing punch to the gut to the non-horror fans who loved the "psychological thriller" that was The Silence of the Lambs, despite it being a movie about two serial killers.  Scott and Harris seem to be saying: "You like this Hannibal the Cannibal character?  Here, watch him eat someone's brain while they're still alive."  I imagine many people walked out of the movie at this point in disgust.  For that alone, I kind of like the film.

But, I'm not sure how necessary this film was.  In order to reunite Starling and Lecter, it seems they had to invent more of a relationship for them than I think was ever suggested in Silence.  Here, Lecter is a sort of protective stalker of Starling.  When her career is threaten, he comes running back into the United States, despite his face being elevated into the FBI's 10 most wanted list again and having a rich survivor of his past cruelty hunting him.  It's a bit pathetic, actually.  Here's this cold, calculating monster, but watch as he risks it all to save the girl he loves.  Weird.  I don't really see where this love story is coming from, though it's suggested in this film that Lecter admires her incorruptibility, something I imagine he sees in himself as well.  At least the film deviates from the idiotic ending of the novel, in which Lecter and Starling run off to Argentina together as lovers.

This has got to be one of the oddest Hollywood sequels of all time.  I'm impressed with the final product in a bizarre way, even if I don't like the specifics of the story.  (7/10)

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