Monday, February 29, 2016

Alma- The Russian Bigfoot.

During the height of Soviet oppression, in Russia, where they were sending millions of their own people and soldiers to the Gulag concentration camps (in the case of the troopers it was usually for the crime of being captured by the enemy), while simultaneously fighting the Nazis, an interesting person was captured by some collective labor peasants. During the October of 1941, outside of Buinaksk in what is modern day Dagestan, A Red Army lieutenant colonel by the name of V. S. Karapetyan was summoned to inspect the prisoner, to determine whether he was a spy, and if his strange appearance was a disguise.
His official translated report (declassified in 1992 after the collapse of the Soviet Union) reads as follows:

“I can still see the creature as it stood before me, naked and bare-footed. And it was doubtlessly a man, because its entire shape was human. The chest back, and shoulders, however were covered with shaggy hair of a dark brown color….
“The man stood absolutely straight with his arms hanging, and his height was above average 180 centimeters [roughly six foot, above average for the people native to this region]. He stood before me like a giant, his mighty chest thrust forward. His fingers were thick, strong, and exceptionally large. On the whole, he was considerably bigger than any of the local inhabitants. His eyes told me nothing. They were dull and empty – the eyes of an animal…
“When kept in a warm room he sweated profusely. While I was there, some water and then some food was brought up to his mouth; and someone offered him a hand, but there was no reaction. I gave the verbal conclusion that this was no disguised person, but a wild creature of some kind.”
The report then follows that while Karapetyan suggested that the creature be returned to the wild, his superior, at the insistence of the political officer attached to the unit, ordered it shot, in case it might be a spy. This also would allow the commander to claim a victory, however hollow, to those who might accuse him of slackness and send him off on a trumped up charge to one of the numerous death camps so popular in Communist Russia.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Kidnapped by Bigfoot

Muchalat Harry
          This occurred in 1928 to a man named Muchalat Harry, a Native American of the Nootka tribe, on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Harry was a trapper heading for the Conuma River to collect some beaver pelts when he was attacked.
          According to his report, one night he found himself being scooped up and bundled in his own blankets by a large hairy creature, roughly about 8 foot tall. He estimated that he had been carried two to three miles. When he was dropped out of his blanket, he found himself surrounded by close to twenty of the creatures, men, women and children. The area seemed to be a makeshift campsite (no fire) littered with large bones. He became terrified that the creatures were going to eat him.
          But that didn’t happen. Instead they seemed fascinated by this strange little man, so similar to themselves. A few came forward pulling gently at his clothing, what they must have assumed was his skin. To their amazement they found it loose. Several children also nervously crept up and sniffed at him. All this time Harry remained motionless and by late afternoon most of the tribe had grown bored with him and departed, presumably to hunt or gather food.
          Left by himself, Harry jumped up and bolted for the woods. He admitted later that the creatures did not follow him, but he was in a panic state and actually ran past his own camp, continuing on for a dozen more miles until he reached his hidden canoe. He then paddled the 45 miles downriver to Nootka. He arrived there torn, nearly frozen, and uttering wild cries.
          He was eventually nursed back to health, where he told his tale to some brothers in a nearby Benedictine mission and gave up his profession of trapping. Rarely even stepping out his own village.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Marquis- A Puppet Film about the Marquis de Sade

            Now here is a truly unique film, brought to us by our French cousins and their unique sensibilities. This is a film about Donatien Alphonse François, the  Marquis de Sade done in an unusual style of puppetry, live actors wearing animatronic masks, and some limited clay animation.

            The film was the brainchild of Roland Torpor who created the imagery and story for the 1973 cult classic La Planète Sauvage, or in English Fantastic Planet. For those who remember it, the film was a wild ride of bizarre visual and fascinating spiritual concepts, which took place on a distant planet where Humans were bred as domesticated pets for a giant blue race of aliens. I will do a full article on this at a later date.

            Marquis is a different take on life as if partially based on the philosophical writing of de Sade. In pre-revolutionary France, the Marquis de Sade sits in the Bastille working on his writing and having conversations with his penis named Colin. When Colin is not whining about his need for stimulation and espousing his impulsive philosophies, he is "telling stories" that make up the Marquis' work. The symbolism is pretty thick here, but in tune with De Sade’s writings, which were never subtle.

A close up of Colin
de Sade was imprisoned for shitting on a cross. Additionally he is accused of raping and impregnating the bovine Justine. The latter is a plot by a priest to try to keep secret the fact that Justine's rapist was actually the King of France. These lead to some truly weird sex scenes, including where the Marquis fucks a hole in a talking wall with his penis; or where he has anal sex with a guard using a lobster; or of the guard masturbating milk from the cow heroine’s udders.

Meanwhile, the revolutionaries prepare to stage a coup and depose the king, under the lead of Juliette, an equine noble. Several of the inmates are also political prisoners (including a police chief imprisoned for selling bad pork) leading to several failed escape attempts which land the inmates in the Bastille dungeon. They are eventually freed, however, by the revolutionaries.

Colin eventually falls in love with Juliette and runs away with her to continue the revolution, leaving the Marquis to continue his writing and to muse about his life in peace.

Naturally this is not meant to be taken in anyway as recreating of the Marquis de Sade’s life, but represents his mental state and the state of France during his time in the Bastille. It is a sympathetic look at de Sade. The film takes a Romantic position of a man of intellect and letters warring with his sexual drive (and even has an end when his penis takes off to find a life of its own).

In truth the Marquis de Sade had no such conflict between mind and flesh. His work could not be regarded as something pure and aside from his baser urges and were in fact fueled by his urges to drive deeper into literary depravity. As is show in the fact that his most savage work, The 120 Days of Sodom, which was the basis for the film Salo (reviewed here) was written in the Bastille.

This film is incredibly NSFW, but should be experienced by anyone who want to watch something very different.

Enjoy and Caveat Emptor!
                                                Full film is here.

Friday, February 5, 2016

The Year of the Sex Olympics- Old school Sci-Fi at its best

          This is an interesting obscure little film originally made for the Theater 625 program for the BBC in 1968, it had achieved some cult status for being ahead of its time narrative and predicting the rise of reality TV some forty years before it became dominant.  
Nigel Kneale
          It was written by veteran British Sci-Fi genius Nigel Kneale known for bringing the first sci-fi drama to television in The Quatermass Experiment, then for his TV adaptation of Orwell’s 1984 (starring a young Peter Cushing and Donald Pleasance). He continued on with other projects most notably, Quatermass 2, Quatermass and the Pit, The Abominable Snowman, The Quatermass Conclusion, and The Stone Tape (which I will be covering in a future article).
          Originally filmed in glorious color, unfortunately that version is lost and, except for a few stills, all we have is the black and white copy. Still that is good enough. The drama takes place in a time "sooner than you think..." when all the basic needs of the world have been met and successfully automated, mankind has nothing to do with itself, leading to an overpopulation problem.
          World peace had been achieved through the use of television and “apathy control”. Society has been divided into two types of people, low and high drives.
Future versions of you.
The low drives sit around watching it all day and the leaders (high drives) realized that they can control their behaviors by what they present on the tube. All of the redundant tendencies of mankind (referred to as “tensions”)- love, war, hate, religion, loyalty, family- are shown on the TV as a substitute for the real thing. Thus they have the “Hungry Angry Show” to reduce those attributes and “The Sex Olympics”, “Sportsex” and “Artsex” shows to allow people to leisurely masturbate over the beautiful people and avoid the real thing, thus reducing the surplus population. As the show puts it “gotta make ‘em think, ‘I cannot do that. Sex is not to do. Sex is to watch.’”
          Along with the limiting of thought on the small screen, the language has also been culled to exclude such old time concepts from being transmitted onto future generations. To aid this thus all children are raised separate from their parents and marriage has been abolished.
Nat Mender, who has a bit of thyroid condition
          The story revolves around Nat Mender, a television producer, who is bored with his life and yearns for something that he cannot understand or even conceive of. To top it off, the rating are lower as the populace has become immured to the constant diet of sex and violence. Nat is contacted by his ex-girlfriend Deanie about their child who is not doing well. The pair go to visit the girl only to discover, to Nat’s horror, that she has been classified as low drive and will be sent out to dwell with the unwashed masses. To top this off Deanie’s new boyfriend, Lasar, is a moody artist type who wishes to express himself in images of horror, but that would cause “tension” so it is not allowed.
          It is then determined that in order to get the audience back interested humor has to be reintroduced into their programming lineup, but all of their attempts to do so fail with a huge cringe factor. But then Lasar, attempts to break into the Sex Olympics to show his horrible images and falls off a rope killing himself. This unexpected accident sends the audience into peals of laughter. Giving the studio heads a new idea.
Leonard Rossiter in Year of the Sex Olympics
          Nat fed up with his life comes up with the “Live Life Show” were he, Deanie, and their daughter are put on a deserted island to attempt to survive in a stone age existence, having only a medieval type cottage provided for them. He feels that this is something which could reconnect him to a spiritual life that has been lost of modern society. All of this is broadcast 24/7 back to the audience. But unknown to Nat, the producers also place a homicidal lunatic on the island with them, because as they say “it’s a show, somethings gotta happen.”
          I won’t spoil the ending for you, but allow me to say that no one I have ever shown this to has ever been disappointed. It is a truly “holy shit” ending that will cause you to remember this fil for years to come.
          Enjoy and Caveat Emptor!

                                                     Full Version is here.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Odd Things the Ancients Reported Falling from the Sky

The first known recording, outside of the Bible, of foreign objects crashing down out of the heavens is in Livy’s History of Rome, (or Ab Urbe Condita Libri, “Books Since the City's Founding to be precise) written about 10 CE.
In Book I Chapter XXXI he writes, “After the defeat of the Sabines, when1 King Tullus and the entire Roman state were at a high pitch of glory and prosperity, it was reported to the king and senators that there had been a rain of stones on the Alban Mount. As this could scarce be credited, envoys were dispatched to examine the prodigy, and in their sight there fell from the sky, like hail-stones which the wind piles in drifts upon the ground, a shower of pebbles.”
Further the Greek historian Athenaeus refers to a three day fall of fish and frogs in the Deipnosophistae (Banquet of the Sophists), written around 200 CE.
Athenaeus writes, “I know also that it has very often rained fishes. At all events, Phoenias, in the second book of his Eresian Magistrates, says that in the Chersonesus it once rained fish uninterruptedly for three days; and Phylarchus, in his fourth book says that people had often seen it raining fish, and often also raining wheat, and that the same thing has happened with respect to frogs.”
 Additionally Heracleides Lembus, an Egyptian civil servant, historian, and philosophical writers, in the twenty-first book of his History, written about 150 CE states- "In Paeonia and Dardania it has, they say, before now rained frogs; and so great has been the number of these frogs that the houses and the roads have been full of them; and at first, for some days, the inhabitants, endeavoring to kill them, and shutting up their houses, endured the pest; but when they did no good, but found that all their vessels were filled with them, and the frogs were found to be boiled up and roasted with everything they ate, and when besides all this, they could not make use of any water, nor put their feet on the ground for the heaps of frogs that were everywhere, and were annoyed also by the smell of those that died, they fled the country."