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Cameron H.

Musical Mondays Week 109 Forbidden Zone

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We watched:

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(Sorry, nothing pithy this week. I’m in the weeds this morning.)

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Please don't hold back if you didn't like this.  I suspect I will be tarred and feathered for picking this.

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It's amazing how Forbidden Zone also refers to butt stuff.

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Me watching this movie with my eyes closed and fingers in my ears humming...

 

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But seriously, I had a massive migraine yesterday and couldn't start watching this until last night. I just finished it. Honestly, I'm not too sure what to think of it. Let's see if I can work it out.

My prevailing feeling is one of nausea. Like, the whole thing is gross. Not just with the sexism and racism, but just everything about it turned my stomach. However, I think this was absolutely the type of visceral reaction they were hoping for, so, like Mission Accomplished?

It felt very student art filmy. Very punk rocky. very John Waters-y. But, without the deftness of any of those things, and kind of fails at everything it is trying to do. Like, if I look at it at a Comedy, I don't think it's very funny. If I look at it as a Musical, *most* of the numbers are intentionally terrible. It also misses me as an Art Film as it seems to lack a point beyond lets be as offensive as we can be. I mean, there's a word for people like that, and it's "asshole." So...the movie is kind of a big asshole.

Again, I feel like that was very much the intention of the film, so I guess it succeeds. In a weird way, I'm glad I saw it. It's definitely not something I would have ever picked for myself, I hadn't even heard of it before, and that's what I like about Musical Mondays. It forces me to go outside of my comfort zone. That being said, I would neve want to watch this ever again. It is pretty fucking distasteful -- lol.  

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4 minutes ago, Cameron H. said:

But seriously, I had a massive migraine yesterday and couldn't start watching this until last night. I just finished it. Honestly, I'm not too sure what to think of it. Let's see if I can work it out.

My prevailing feeling is one of nausea. Like, the whole thing is gross. Not just with the sexism and racism, but just everything about it turned my stomach. However, I think this was absolutely the type of visceral reaction they were hoping for, so, like Mission Accomplished?

It felt very student art filmy. Very punk rocky. very John Waters-y. But, without the deftness of any of those things, and kind of fails at everything it is trying to do. Like, if I look at it at a Comedy, I don't think it's very funny. If I look at it as a Musical, *most* of the numbers are intentionally terrible. It also misses me as an Art Film as it seems to lack a point beyond lets be as offensive as we can be. I mean, there's a word for people like that, and it's "asshole." So...the movie is kind of a big asshole.

Again, I feel like that was very much the intention of the film, so I guess it succeeds. In a weird way, I'm glad I saw it. It's definitely not something I would have ever picked for myself, I hadn't even heard of it before, and that's what I like about Musical Mondays. It forces me to go outside of my comfort zone. That being said, I would neve want to watch this ever again. It is pretty fucking distasteful -- lol.  

I had trouble finding this to watch it and now reading your reaction, I’m glad I had those troubles. I MAY still watch it if I can find it for free, but I won’t pay for it.

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2 minutes ago, GrahamS. said:

I had trouble finding this to watch it and now reading your reaction, I’m glad I had those troubles. I MAY still watch it if I can find it for free, but I won’t pay for it.

That's fair. If you can watch it for free, it's worth looking at, but bail when it gets too much. Like, again, I don't mind so much if things want to push boundaries, but I like there to be some kind of point behind it. If it's just sort of shock value for shock value's sake, which doesn't really work for me. Literally, it starts with some minstrel show nonsense, and ends with a group number with a whole bunch of nonsense in there with, seemingly, no purpose. Like mermaids and Jesus with a crucifix, but it doesn't really add up to anything other than, "Are you offended yet?" 

 

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I kind of hate it when people ask how something got made, and the answer is drugs. It always feels sort of lazy to me. However, watching this, I don't think it was made because of drugs, but I think it is meant to be watched while high. There's not really much of a plot, so my mind would wander from time to time, and then, suddenly, there would be, like, a chicken talking. This wouldn't be explained. It would just kind of happen. I think the kind of X-Rated Sesame Street, ADHD-ness of it is meant to be taken in all at once. It's made for you to just catch certain things on different viewings. Not that I would want to re-watch it, but for, like, the kind of people who would want to.

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Here is the Justwatch page.  The movie is also "free" with various subscriptions.  Many of these offer free trials.

 

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As I stated in my Letterboxd review I think I get what they wanted to do with this movie. They liked the classic animation style of Max Fleischer aka Betty Boop and that rubber band animation style and they wanted to do a weird live action version of that. However, much like another film that I loathed that HDTGM did, Velicopastor, they want to do a send up of something without understanding what it was they were sending up. Like Fleischer cartoons were not pushing bounties when it came to being offensive, they pushed them a bit it terms of suggestiveness perhaps, so when they had a blackface character it wasn't being edgy it is just what people did at the time. The women were sex bombs and suggestive but they didn't just have their tits out. It just seemed to me that idea was a hook to hang their hat on and what they really wanted to do was just be weird for the sake of being weird and offensive because it's easier to be offensive than come up with actual jokes. Doing things on the cheap and trying to get away with it, crouching offensive humor behind a guise of "Well these people do drag" or "this man is gay" to justify just cheap and shoddy jokes. 

Fun fact I own two copies of this movie but didn't watch it until the other day. Both were gifted to me by people that know I like weird movies and I like bad movies. To be fair to them on paper it does seem like something I would enjoy. If I was 20 years younger I may think different as I do now. The funny thing is earlier this year I watched a documentary on the band The Residents and they talked about this movie briefly in it. The Elfmans were friends with The Residents and they were filming it in their space. There is a difference in what the difference between what the The Residents were doing and what Forbidden Zone was doing. One is actual art with something to say. The execution comes off as weird but they are trying to say something. Forbidden Zone wants to be that but has nothing to say. Heck, Holy Mountain and El Topo are bizarre surrealist movies but again they are trying to say something.

 

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17 hours ago, Cameron H. said:

But seriously, I had a massive migraine yesterday and couldn't start watching this until last night. I just finished it. Honestly, I'm not too sure what to think of it. Let's see if I can work it out.

My prevailing feeling is one of nausea. Like, the whole thing is gross. Not just with the sexism and racism, but just everything about it turned my stomach. However, I think this was absolutely the type of visceral reaction they were hoping for, so, like Mission Accomplished?

It felt very student art filmy. Very punk rocky. very John Waters-y. But, without the deftness of any of those things, and kind of fails at everything it is trying to do. Like, if I look at it at a Comedy, I don't think it's very funny. If I look at it as a Musical, *most* of the numbers are intentionally terrible. It also misses me as an Art Film as it seems to lack a point beyond lets be as offensive as we can be. I mean, there's a word for people like that, and it's "asshole." So...the movie is kind of a big asshole.

Again, I feel like that was very much the intention of the film, so I guess it succeeds. In a weird way, I'm glad I saw it. It's definitely not something I would have ever picked for myself, I hadn't even heard of it before, and that's what I like about Musical Mondays. It forces me to go outside of my comfort zone. That being said, I would neve want to watch this ever again. It is pretty fucking distasteful -- lol.  

Umm, you skipped the biggest question.  Did you like Peco & Sepulveda? 😄

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5 hours ago, Cinco DeNio said:

Umm, you skipped the biggest question.  Did you like Peco & Sepulveda? 😄

I liked the music. I have no problem with it

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16 hours ago, Cameron H. said:

 

Farewell show

 

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Time for my comments.  I found this movie several years ago.  I did a blanket search across several sites to find movie musicals to pick.  The description for this one sounded interesting, especially as an Oingo Boingo origin piece.  When I saw it I had much the same reaction as @Cameron H. did. It was disgusting, tasteless, yet interesting.  I honestly thought I might be kicked out of the group for picking this but I had to share the misery.

There are a lot of odd things but I have watched it many times since.  It is now wearing off and will become a once-in-a-while watch.  If people want to see it for free please let me know.  I'm willing to Kast tonight or tomorrow night.

Random thoughts:

  • The Witch's Egg song the queen sings is bonkers.  She talks about her dad and her search for love.  Yet she's been in the Sixth Dimension (SD) for 1,000 years!  Is this like Narnia where time is different?
  • Susan Tyrrell (the Queen) wrote the Witch's Egg song.
  • The ex-queen (Andy Warhol star Viva) calls the new queen "silicone-uddered".  When did the new queen get the implants?  It must have been 1,000 years ago in the SD before the ex-queen was sent to jail.  Once again the time frame is odd.
  • The jail the ex-queen is in seems awfully flimsy and no ceiling.  Couldn't she have climbed out by now?
  • The king has an autographed picture of Frenchy but how did he get it? By that I mean she's dressed differently in the picture than she is in the movie.  One could argue that she's wearing the black outfit under her robe.  I've seen the making-of featurette.  One of the outtakes is the new queen ripping open Frenchy's robe and sucking on her bare breast in an attempt to abuse Frenchy.  So the black outfit appears and disappears.
  • I like the human chandelier but he seems to have quite the boner when he's turned into a skeleton.  Also, does that mean the king and queen were making love so long that the chandelier eventually became a skeleton?
  • I can't stand the Kipper Kids in any of their appearances.  They just do the same thing over and over, while wearing jockstraps or boxing shorts.  They are also the kids in the school with their noses pulled back via a rubber band.  I found out they have an appearance in the movie UHF but I don't know what it is.  YouTube has some outtakes of theirs that didn't make it into the movie.
  • The Yiddishe Charleston (and everything Yiddish in this movie) is so bad the queen killed the singer!  (I think that was the director singing it but am not sure.  The red hair gives him away.)
  • Everyone in this movie was committed.  Most kicked their checks back into the production.  Herve Villechaize came over on weekends and helped paint sets.  He was an accomplished painter in real life.  The picture he's painting in the movie isn't his but he was a good painter.
  • Herve was in this because of Susan Tyrrell (the Queen and the bartender in Rockula).  They had dated previously IRL but no longer were.  However she got him to play the king and you saw their lovemaking and chemistry.
  • Squeezit Henderson is a big fat snitch!
  • Squeezit is shown to only be 11 years old in that memory where his mom calls him Chicken Boy.  (Joe Spinnell is the drunken sailor.  He's supposed to be famous but I've never heard of him.)  So that means everyone else in the movie from the classroom is also only 11?

 

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Update. I found out the surviving Kipper Kid (the other passed away in 2018),  Martin Rochus Sebastian von Haselberg, has been married to Bette Midler since 1984!

 

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19 hours ago, Cinco DeNio said:

 

  • I can't stand the Kipper Kids in any of their appearances.  They just do the same thing over and over, while wearing jockstraps or boxing shorts.  They are also the kids in the school with their noses pulled back via a rubber band.  I found out they have an appearance in the movie UHF but I don't know what it is.  YouTube has some outtakes of theirs that didn't make it into the movie.

UHF is great. Their appearance... is literally doing the exact same thing. It's an example of how weird the show they are watching is within the movie.

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1 hour ago, Cam Bert said:

UHF is great. Their appearance... is literally doing the exact same thing. It's an example of how weird the show they are watching is within the movie.

Here's the deleted scene

 

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20 hours ago, Cinco DeNio said:

Time for my comments.  I found this movie several years ago.  I did a blanket search across several sites to find movie musicals to pick.  The description for this one sounded interesting, especially as an Oingo Boingo origin piece.  When I saw it I had much the same reaction as @Cameron H. did. It was disgusting, tasteless, yet interesting.  I honestly thought I might be kicked out of the group for picking this but I had to share the misery.

There are a lot of odd things but I have watched it many times since.  It is now wearing off and will become a once-in-a-while watch.  If people want to see it for free please let me know.  I'm willing to Kast tonight or tomorrow night.

Random thoughts:

  • Squeezit is shown to only be 11 years old in that memory where his mom calls him Chicken Boy.  (Joe Spinnell is the drunken sailor.  He's supposed to be famous but I've never heard of him.)  So that means everyone else in the movie from the classroom is also only 11?

 

I looked him up and Joe Spinnell is Willi Cicci in the first two Godfather movies.  He would have been in the third movie but he passed away the year before filming started.

wcicci-cl-shrttie.jpg?ssl=1

maxresdefault.jpg

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Late to get into this, my apologies. I realize that the point of a lot of art school projects is to be transgressive and to test boundaries, so I probably shouldn't judge this too harshly. With that said, comparing it to other art school music output at the time, like Talking Heads or Devo, even if those bands didn't do full-length movies like this, it doesn't really hold up to those standards. There's definitely some Monty Python influence as well, what with the animation and nonsequiturs, and one can imagine how popular Monty Python was amongst college kids in the late '70s. I realize that a lot of this breaking of narrative form is to be pointless on purpose, but with the real life animation style here, including the racial and ethnic stereotypes, I don't really know what they were trying to say at all. Maybe some esoteric point about how those cartoons were racist? I doubt it. I think "offensive to be offensive" stuff is fine for high school and college kids, because they are testing their own boundaries and trying to find their voice, trying to discover what societal limits are compared to their own . That's important for our development. But that doesn't mean it will make a good movie.

But yes, the music was good.

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