Saturday, April 03, 2004

Latest Viewing

Wrestling: I picked up three new wrestling DVDs in the last few weeks, and they are of wildy varying quality.

The first was UPW Future Shock vol. 1; UPW vs The World. It's headlined by a Christopher Daniels/Rob Van Dam match that is surprisingly good considering that Daniels was wrestling just a short time after suffering partial paralysis, and the fact that the ring breaks midway through the match and they have to improvise to give the ring crew long enough to fix it. There are also some other largely forgettable matches, including a pretty good one between Tommy Dreamer and Samoa Joe. The production on this disc is pretty terrible, as it looks like they made the copies of the video by setting up a camcorder and recording a television screen playing the matches (at one point a cord falls in front of the screen that I am sure proves this point, since it was of totally different video quality). Also the production crew makes WCW's angle choosing look great, there were plenty of times that there just wasn't coverage for a move and it was missed, or the camerawork was so shakey that it wasn't much better than home video quality.

Not a recommended buy.

Next came XPW Freefall, headlined by a 40 ft. scaffold match between New Jack and Vic Grimes. They bloody each other up and then climb to the top of the scaffold structure and Jack ends up throwing Grimes over the side where he plummets through some of the tables that are set up to break his fall and lands in an ugly bump on the ring ropes and flips over before coming to a stop in the ring. Not as well done as the Tommy Dreamer/Brian Lee bump, but higher and more painfull looking.

There's also some female nudity on the disc, otherwise it's pretty barren of quality content. Production is pretty good, but the announcers are annoying and detract from the show.

Buy it if you like the garbage wrestling, but otherwise it isn't really worth it.

Finally is Ring of Honor; The Era of Honor Begins which is an edited down version of the first ROH show that was professionally shot and put to video. It's a pretty good show and has alot of good matches showcasing guys who are more technically based than entertainment based. They make it a point that this is supposed to be competition not a show.

Spanky has a nice match against three others from Shawn Michaels promotion, including former TNA X-Champion Michael Shane. There's a really good IWA title match between Super Crazy and Eddie Guerrero, and a sweet three way dance between Lo Ki, Chris Daniels and the American Dragon. It's the first time I'd seen Dragon and he moves and acts alot like Steven Regal, but with more of a martial-arts submission style.

Reminded me alot of old ECW shows in quality of production, but that isn't really a bad thing. The announcing was largely sharp, with color commentary by Steve Corino, and I enjoyed this one quite a bit. There are also a couple of matches featuring the Amazing Red.

Well worth your time if you're a wrestling fan, and I'm looking forward to future ROH wide releases that don't cost me $25 for a DVD (this one was $9.99)


I also picked up a craptacular B-Movie called Demon Lust starring Brinke Stevens and Tom Savini. Terrible film shot on Video about a couple of would-be gangsters who stumble on a vampire/demon chick. The story is a mess and so is the direction and sound. Editing and music aren't good either. Savini and Brinke try in their roles, but there isn't really much there for them to do.

The best two things about this movie are the fact that the DVD only cost me a dollar, and the trailers for other films on the disc. My favorite trailers were the ones for Seduction Cinema's retro films, especially Cinderalla 2000 which is apparantly a comedy/musical/sci-fi/sex film. It looks so horribly bad that I may have to buy it down the road.

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