23 April 2016

Movies: Ape Man & Point of Terror

Pottering around today, time for a couple of rubbish movies.

Ape Man (1943) with Bela Lugosi.

It's only 63mins, but feels longer. Not a great transfer, but Lugosi does manage to make the ape man sympathetic.
To be honest I kinda lost interest in this one, but the plot seemed to be scientist (Lugosi) accidentally turns himself into half man half ape, hirsute!!! and then decides an injection of spinal fluid will fix things, at which point a rampage occurs.

It has 4.3 on IMDB. Even as a b-grade fan, it was slow. More a 1-2 for me.

Point of Terror (1971)
Tony, our hero, is a nightclub singer who dreams of stardom. Tony doesn't have much time (not sure we find out why, although ironically the actor died in 1973 - when the movie was finally released, so y'know, foreshadowing). Tony commits adultery to hopefully get a recording contract. The movie was on a horror compilation, so far it's far more poor acting, slightly sleazy, and script writing of the worse kind. But yes, better than ape man. Awesome cheesy 70s soundtrack, in fact I've found you the opening credits... the full movie is also on youtube. More exposition than you can shake a stick at, brilliant! The woman who is going to make Tony's career, is married to a wheelchair bound ex-music executive, she apparently had her own life before marriage. Tony meanwhile is having nightmares of stabbing. We don't know why. Tony's adulterous manager has now knocked off her wheelchair bound husband, in a twist, he screamed in pain when she knocked his legs. He then drowned in a swimming pool, something the Para Olympics may contest as unlikely. This has made Tony an accessory to murder, apparently. Oh yeah, more 70s cheese music, and they're (tony's other woman) riding through forests on horses, following by snogging on the beach in the sunset. Oh right, this other woman is the managers daughter, tony has broken it off with the manager who took it poorly, and has gone for a flight down the hill - courtesy of Tony. She's looking a bit broken now.
Eh definitely not a horror, but OK background crap.

17 April 2016

Movies: Andy Sidaris classy dude Pt 1

I splashed out on a 12 movie set, 4 quid. All by Andy Sidaris. He's known for boobs, bombs, and bullets (summarised on wiki as BBB) movies in the 80's, and in a sop to providing employment for the unemployable, he frequently used playboy bunnies in his movies. As I said, classy dude.

First up was: Malibu Express 
Had to wait 4min before the first boob shot. Un-fucking-believable.
The movie was carried by extensive exposition/voiceover but the lead (a PI called Cody). This was essential as the plot was loose, at best. Cody managed to sleep with pretty much every woman, all of whom seemed desperate to drop their pants/tops, and all of whom were enthusiastic adopters of the 'commando' approach to panty wearing.

A reoccurring motif was a drag race with some hill billies. For no obvious reason.
Cheesy doesn't begin to describe the movie. Much beer is required for viewing. The scenes are not so much linked as lurch from A to F, the linking appears to be boobs and Cody shagging.
Music: country and western

Hard Ticket to Hawaii
Empowered woman = pilot. Still obligatory boob shot tho' (huzzah!). There's also a very plastic looking snake, and some very Chicago/Cetera style music. Oh no, they've discovered the snake is contaminated!! But the women don't know!! They're sitting on the island, and they've found some contraband in a R/C helicopter, attacked by the smugglers they escape as they're highly trained operatives - and carry ninja stars. Yes. Ninja stars.
Oh knowing reference back to Malibu Express!! And the contraband is diamonds, the girls know that they'll be traced as they've got a distinctive plane. Sensible!!
The snake has, predictably, escaped - it doesn't move much, just sits there looking like plastic.
Woohoo, more exposition.
"you've got a great ass" "so do you pilgrim".
oh yeah, there's a weird kung fu subplot too. that one I've decided to avoid, it's too confusing.
I won't be spoiling the ending to say that things work out. I'm presuming you'd already guessed that. There is more coherence to the story than Malibu Express, which is saying very little.

11 April 2016

Cooking with Bruce: Squid with stuff

It's been awhile. I know. You'll be thrilled to hear I haven't starved.

today's menu comes from my head. I wanted squid, I had squid. I didn't want chips. So I made something. It probably has a name. I'll call it 'steve'.

squid hoods for however many people you're feeding
plain flour
cayenne pepper

sunflower oil for frying

olive oil
onion finely chopped
2 sticks of celery, chopped
3 tomatoes, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1t caster sugar
1T (ish) pomegranate molasses
10 green olives [stones removed]
1T capers, rinsed

Cooking stuff

  1. Remove squid guts, and scrape clean, score lightly in a crosshatch pattern.
  2. Heat olive oil, and cook onions until slightly browned, remove (and drain).
  3. Add a bit more olive oil, cook celery, garlic, tomatoes, sugar for a couple of minutes, add pomegranate molasses, olives, capers until starting to collapse. Add the onions to the mix, mix in the parsley. Cook for a couple of minutes and place into bowls.
  4. Add sunflower oil to pan and heat to very hot, toss squid in the flour+cayenne pepper until well coated, and fry for 1-2 mins per side. 
  5. Place squid on the mixture, eat.
I was thinking of using balsamic vinegar, but I'd run out, I think the pomegranate was a better choice anyway.


4 April 2016

Whisky Live

Half of the cabal reconvened to visit Whisky Live in London. Samples were small, so although there's a large number below - it's not as bad as it looks. Honest. Notes were brief, and at times, 'challenging' to decipher, but let's see how it goes...

Arran Whisky Port Finish
50%, very sweet, quaffing whisky, short finish 7/10

Wemyss Hive Honey, slight spice, not hugely complex 6/10

Wemyss New Spirit - nice [not rated]

Kavalan Whisky - Taiwanese whisky
Single Cast strength Solist Sherry - nice enough 6/10
Solist Fino Sherry Finish - smooth, honey, spices, superb, 9/10  [I think it's the Solist Fino anyway]
Ito Sherry 9.5/10 lighter than the Sherry finish [again, not sure on this one]

Tomintoul 16yo 
Always enjoyed this, nice and light, refreshing - almost, light spicy and short finish 7/10

Compass Whisky
King St Glasgow - very quaffable, light smoke, 7/10 - 7.5/10 (Alec!)
Orangerie - very nice.
This is not a luxury whisky - not heavily sherried, very long, lovely 8/10

Nomad - Sherried Blend. Ridiculously good for the price (£30) - probably best value whisky of the show. 7.5/10

It's at this point we decided to get a bit radical and try bourbon and Irish Whisky, we've never been that addicted to it...

Tincup Bourbon Whisky : sweet, kinda interesting. 5/10 (A) - 6/10 (B).

Blackbush - Irish Whisky. Fucking close to water. 2/10.
Right, well we learnt from that experience.

18yo Arran. Superb stuff, light but interesting. 8/10

Laphroaig Brodir - port, spiky, salt, bacon, very similar to their PX. 8/10
This is one of their export/travel exclusives, yeah we liked it.

Strawberry Liquor. Look we were keen to try stuff and it was nice, even nicer in the cocktail..

Elements of Islay:
Br6 - feisty, bacon, very nice 8/10
Bw5 - ok-ish, 7/10
Lagavulin - very vigorous, salty, bacon, 7/10
Peat (blend) not too bad 7/10

there follows two bourbons, which could be deciphered (maybe) as Pink and Red. The ?pink? one was described reasonably complex 6/10, and the 'red' as a bit boring 5/10.

Longmorn - and some work something like 'Bortgary', juicy green apples 6/10, we also tried a 40yo which wasn't that great 6/10.

16yo Glen Moray. Pretty standard, 6/10
25yo Glen Moray. 8.5/10 - we do like our GMs :)

23yo - apples ! 8/10
25yo 8/10
peaty 7/10

We had a few more repeats of drams we liked, but that seems to be the main list.

Best value, by some distance, is the Nomad. Best whisky? Probably the Taiwanese sherry monster, although the 18yo Arran is very very nice.
There are rumours of a Cabal reunion, so you may yet get another Cabal update...

me (and Alec)