About Really Awful Movies

Horror movie authors and journalists who also review exploitation, action, grindhouse, kung fu, sci fi and other genre films. We are hosts of the Really Awful Movies Podcast, a celebration of low budget cinema - smart genre film chat, predominantly horror movies.

Kirk Hammett collection at the ROM

If you didn’t think your love of horror could be amplified, Kirk Hammett’s collection at the Royal Ontario Museum will dial it up to 11.

The Metallica guitarist flew in from Moscow (and boy, were his arms tired… probably needs a rest before ripping out two-handed tapping solos) and was in Toronto for a sold out discussion about It’s Alive! Classic Horror and Sci-Fi Art From The Kirk Hammett Collection

In a talk moderated by exhibit co-creator Dan Finamore, a curator at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, Hammett admitted that he misses his collection, generating knowing chuckles from his fellow traveller nerds. And miss ’em, he should. This exhibit warrants another visit, as the authors of this site already miss ’em. This is essential viewing for horror sci-fi heads, and one need look no further than below.

This exhibition explores Hammett’s significant collection and “examines the connection between artistry, emotion, and popular culture through a selection of works from 20th-century cinema,” according to the site.

Favorites include a mind-blowing Swedish art deco poster for Metropolis, and Boris Karloff’s Mummy (above).

There’s a sensational  promotional piece for Invasion of the Saucer Men, that is literally out of this world. And perhaps the showstopper is a couple of gorgeous Bride of Frankenstein pieces.

The Hammett collection runs until Jan. 5, 2020. Check out our Really Awful Movies Podcast Kirk Hammett episode!

 

Saturday Night Fever

With its iconic suit and lapels that look like if they flapped hard enough they’d send a wearer skyward Saturday Night Fever comes with a lot of fashion baggage, that’s for sure.

However, what most people who haven’t seen it would not be aware of, this disco flick is more like Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting with corny ethnic strife gang violence and casual racism — there’s a helluva lot of carnage, fist-fighting, death.

Needless to say, this is a move that’s on the surface, a Bee Gees four-on-the-four platform booted dance-fest, and yet it’s dragged in all different directions and doesn’t really know what it wants to be.

At its centre, John Travolta as Tony Monera (and a brief appearance by Fran Drescher as his teen sister), a bridge-and-tunnel hardware store lunkhead. The reason for his existence is taming the dancefloor at 2001 Odyssey, a nondescript warehouse that looks more like a downmarket Hells Angels clubhouse.

He connects romantically with a college student, a more schooled dancer. Him and his moron buddies clown around atop the Verrazzano-Narrows bridge, and he realizes that despite having no ambition, smarts, or focus, he’s no longer the black sheep of the Monera clan as his brother’s left the priesthood.

A mystifying breakout hit that grossed 68X its budget, and even Pauline Kael gushed, “Nirvana is the dance; when the music stops, you return to being ordinary.”

However, the themes, at their core, resonate perhaps now more than ever: aspirational stardom (regardless of how relatively insignificant) to escape the hum-drum, pre-social media peacocking/preening, and misplaced youthful priorities/exuberance/drug taking.

*** (out of 5)