Exquisites 2010: Dan’s Films Of The Year

I would say it was a very good year for Bleeding Skull. Joe and I kicked the site back to life with a series of “charming, well-written reviews reflecting the best & brightest attributes of the human spirit”. (My Mom, 08.16.10) We hit Facebook and Twitter with a woosh. On October 23, we had a glorious evening at Cinefamily in Los Angeles. We showed movies, trailers, Fat Sheriffs and stood in front of a large, charming crowd out for a nice evening. We felt swell this year.

And, of course, we watched a lot of movies and a lot of other random things. I took up a “Side Branch” of TV show reviewing. “As long as it fits within the purview of our site, Dave,” Mr. Skull would say. So, when it came time to assemble my very first Top 10 list for the site, I sat down and thought about it and thought about it. And, then Mr. Skull reminded me that I needed to work on it. A deadline approached. Turns out what I was thinking about was whether or not I wanted to drink Soy Nog or regular Egg Nog this season, not the Top 10 list. So, eyes on the prize, I sat down and I scanned what I’d reviewed. I left out obviously “good” movies, like Brewster McCloud, and anything from the articles. Everything else got sorted and flipped around in my head. And, it came out here…

But…Side Trip…

Before the list beings, I just wanted to say…I hope you’ve enjoyed what we’ve written this year. I also hope that you’ve found some entertaining stuff to watch. Joe & I greatly appreciate your support. Thank you. Fate being on our side, 2011 will Kick-Ass.

Now, read on…

10. Sh! The Octopus (William C. McGann, 1937)
Fuji VHS / Full Review
I thought I would be bored. But, for 55-ish minutes, I smiled and enjoyed. This one snuck up on me. Find a copy. Watch a copy. It’s set in a lighthouse for God’s Sake! (This one should, possibly, go higher on the list but, as I’ve just watched it for the first time, I kept it low. It needs to age a bit before I can see if it’s truly a favorite.)

09. Didn’t You Hear… (Skip Sherwood, 1983)
A.N.E Home Video VHS / Full Review
Too many hands made this a mélange of philosophies and styles that keeps its “What is this actually about?” threshold right beyond the edge of my mind. And, that is what keeps me coming back to this one-of-a-kind film with a great cast and an almost perfect moody/Moog-y soundtrack. Now, I need a copy that looks better.

08. Stunt Rock (Brian Trenchard-Smith, 1978)
Code Red DVD / Full Review
Yeah, it’s an actual movie. And, it is brilliant. 1) See it on the big screen. 2) Absorb it at home. My theme in movies this year seemed to be “Films That Brought Me Joy”. This is one of the best.

07. She Freak (Byron Mabe, 1967)
Something Weird DVD / Full Review
A remake of Freaks that doesn’t really work as a remake. But, as a beautiful, colorful appreciation of the Life of The Carnies, this is superb. The world is so perfectly captured…It’s impossible to resist.

06. Psycho From Texas (Jack Collins & Jim Feazell, 1975)
Paragon VHS / Full Review
1970s American Horror at its most surprisingly interesting and sometimes its most boring and sometimes its sleaziest. Wasn’t this era a great time for just plain odd movies? Well, here’s another one…one of my favorites.

05. Satan War (Bart La Rue, 1979)
DVD-R / Full Review
What a title! What a musical score! What a still, slow movie with the most brilliant closing 15 minutes ever. The point of this movie eludes me but the movie itself has moved into my back room.

04. The Bat Whispers (Roland West, 1930)
Image Entertainment DVD / Full Review
It’s another actual film. And, it is continually astounding and sometimes breathtaking. The Old Dark House as an exercise in cinematic elation.

03. Skullduggery (Ota Richter, 1983)
Media Home Entertainment VHS
Ota Richter and The Bulls. Watch it as soon as possible.

02. The Bounty Hunters (Bruno Pischiutta, 1985)
Video 2 Video VHS / Full Review
Looks like a slow, rather lame SOV bit of nonsense. On the third viewing, I loved it so much I showed every one I knew. Something went missing when they made this film, something important to the cohesion of the whole thing. Thank God…

01. Desperation Rising (Jason Holt, 1989)
Legacy Home Video VHS / Full Review
Beautiful insanity that still escapes my mind. I am going to watch this again soon and it will all make sense. But, until then, I really enjoy thinking about looking forward to watching it again.