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Phenomena - Dario Argento, Jennifer Connelly, and Donald Pleasance

And don’t forget the chimp, the gimp, and the swarms of six-legged creatures. Jennifer Connelly stars as Jennifer, an American at a creepy European boarding school (see Suspiria). She’s pretty and rich, but lonely. Her parents have abandoned her and she’s WAY too friendly with bugs.  What’s a girl to do? Why become friends with a slightly creepy entomologist dude, that’s what. I’m sure she only had an eye for his bags and for his cute assistant, a chimpanzee. Something that is now a thing, I’m sure. Like many Argento flicks, there are decapitations and attempted decapitations. Also lots of blood and broken glass. And mirrors. And useless cops. An excellent follow-up to Suspiria which I’d like to talk about in the future.

Ninjas vs Cowboys, Top 10 Cowboy Manga

I talk about US ninja comics and Japanese cowboy comics on Tim Young's Deconstructing Comics . Listen to it here ! I based on the lecture I gave last year at the Koshi Manga Museum . First slide from my Ninjas vs Cowboys presentation. Here are my Top 10 Cowboy Manga: 10. Bullet Tommy  『弾丸トミー』by Shige SUGIURA This is a classic, one of the earliest comics. It's a "gag manga" for kids and so pokes fun at the various Western movie tropes. The art resembles Shoney's Big Boy, doesn't it? 9.  The Cactus Kid  『サボテン君』by Osamu TEZUKA This is one of Tezuka's early Western manga when he had only seen a few westerns at the time. I like the idea of a guy who wants to turn his parents' saloon into a milk bar. 8. The Belle Starr Gang  『ベル☆スタア強盗団』by Akihiro ITO Ito is known for his Geobreeders  saga, but this is his take on the real-life outlaw Belle Starr and her gang. I like the art and the attempt to incorporate real-life events into the

FLESH + BLOOD mini-review (Rutger Hauer, Verhoeven)

I'm trying out a new format for talking about movies. It's a work in progress. I actually want to do more illustration and the sketch of Jennifer Jason Leigh doesn't do her any justice. Once I turned on this movie, I wanted to look into Susan Tyrrell as she always plays highly-interesting broken characters. I plan to rewatch her in Angel (1984) sometime soon. She has a great quote on IMDB : I'm a loner. I don't like beautiful people, but I find beauty in the grotesque. And in the sweet soul inside someone who has been able to get through their life without being a rat's ass. I love all the connections that I listed up here. Hauer is one of my absolute favorite actors and I can't believe I waited so long to see him in this. Or maybe I saw the casting and ran far away, cuz this is some bizarre casting! Verhoeven is a very interesting director as in he's not afraid to do things differently. He apparently experimented while making this film and