Mystery Science Theater 3000: XXXIII
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CHOOSE YOUR OWN MST3K ADVENTURE!
You purchase the latest collection of episodes from the beloved TV series Mystery Science Theater 3000. Now you are forced to endure four of cinema’s crimes against humanity. If you think you can take on low-rent gangsters and seedy nightclubs, choose Disc One. If you want to go head to head with a gigantic tarantula, choose Disc Two. If you think you can reform a bunch of 1950s juvenile delinquents, choose Disc Three. And if an old television pilot that somehow wandered into a movie theater doesn’t unnerve you, choose Disc Four.
Or choose to enjoy all of these adventures, because your sherpas are some of the funniest people and robots ever created. The plots meander, the characters mystify you, and the filmmaking upsets you. But you laugh all the way through, so any way you turn, you’ve made the right choice.
Earth Vs. The Spider
Teen-Age Crime Wave
Agent For H.A.R.M.
Special Features Include:
-Beatnick Blues: Investigating Daddy-O
-This Movie Has Legs: Looking Back At Earth Vs. The Spider
-Film It Again, Sam: The Katzman Chronicles
-Tommy Cook: From Jungle Boy to Teenage Jungle
-Peter Mark Richman: In H.A.R.M.'s Way
-MST Hour Wraps
-4 Exclusive Mini-Posters by Artist Steve Vance
Top customer reviews
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That shout has gone cheap on.... Again.....
NO CC. NO SDH...... And I must ask why?
Yes shout is well known for leaving CC closed Caption & SDH off things...
And this is one more of them.....
IF? IF you CC closed Caption.. SDH.. Pass on this.....
IF you don't need it.... Pick it up....
307- DADDY-O with short: ALPHABET ANTICS
This 1958 black-and-white film stars Dick Contino, Sandra Giles, Bruno VeSota. A drag race between part-time truck driver and singer "Daddy-O" Phil (Contino) and Jana (Giles) results in Phil losing his license. His new job at a night club turns out to be about more than just singing, his sinister new boss (VeSota) operates a drug ring. Phil and Jana team up to uncover the truth and take the bad guys down. There's a musical number in the movie during which Phil wears he pants very high and his belt buckle off center. In classic MST3K fashion, these two little oddities are turned into an entire hilarious musical host segment as Joel and the 'Bots perform "Hike Your Pants Up". It's worth watching for that alone, but it's a great episode from beginning to end. The 1951 short, "Alphabet Antics", was aimed at very young children and the riffing throughout that is also terrific.
313- EARTH VS. THE SPIDER with short: USING YOUR VOICE
This episode also uses a 1958 black-and-white film, but this one is a classic Bert I. Gordon creature-on-the-loose film about a giant spider. A young girl's father fails to come home one night so she goes searching for him in a cavern with the help of her boyfriend. They discover the giant spider, flee, and then return with the sheriff and others to the cave and kill the giant spider, or so everyone thinks. The spider is apparently merely stunned and so storing it in the school gymnasium turns out to be a really bad idea when it wakes up during a garage band rehearsal and goes on a rampage through the town. This fantastic riffing on the fun monster film is preceded by one of the best and most referenced shorts ever used on MST3K, Using Your Voice, made in 1950. This is the famous "lip and tongue action" short from Centron that was still getting call-back jokes made about it in MST3K episodes far down the road and it is not to be missed. Another great episode from beginning to end.
522- TEEN-AGE CRIME WAVE
A fairly dark 1955 black-and-white film about juvenile delinquency seemingly meant to scare people about that growing problem. It probably worked at least a little bit, because there's little to like about this film or the characters in it. A girl is falsely convicted of being an accessory to a robbery, then gets sprung from jail with the real culprit by the latter's evil boyfriend. The two criminals take the innocent girl with them to a farmhouse where they hide from the police and terrorize the family within. Sounds like fun, doesn't it? It's also really slow during the middle portion. The riffing is okay while the host segments do brighten the whole thing up at least a little bit. Mentos commercials were all over Comedy Central at the time this aired so there's a host segment making fun of those spots. It's a fair episode.
815- AGENT FOR H.A.R.M.
Made in 1966, this is the only color film in this collection. A bland secret agent in a yellow cardigan has to protect a scientist who has created a deadly biological agent. Meanwhile, the secret agent becomes romantically involved with the scientist's young, sexy niece. It's another cheap James Bond wannabe film from a period filled with bad Bond imitations. This one is duller and sillier than a lot of them. The show's host segments all tie together as Mike Nelson is put on trial for "crimes against the universe" and those are the standout elements of this episode. This is the first episode directed by Mike Nelson and the first episode where Pat Brantseg does the voice of Gypsy. It's a fair, but fun episode.
· Beatnick Blues: Investigating Daddy-O
· This Movie Has Legs: Looking Back At Earth Vs. The Spider
· Film It Again, Sam: The Katzman Chronicles
· Tommy Cook: From Jungle Boy To Teenage Jungle
· Peter Mark Richman: In H.A.R.M.’s Way
· MST Hour Wraps
· Theatrical Trailers
THE MOVIE WITH A BEATNIK TITLE THAT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH BEATNIKS:
DADDY-O (1958). Star Dick Contino developed a kind of second career in youth-oriented movies after a promising start as an accordionist. This one (MST episode no. 307) and Girls Town (no. 601) are probably his two best. Here he gets involved in drag-racing, loses his license, then to redeem himself needs to infiltrate a narcotics gang headed by the local honcho (played by portly actor Bruno VeSota, a kind of poor man’s Sydney Greenstreet / William Conrad / Victor Buono). Really the most “beat” thing about this movie is its crazy, mixed-up plot, but Joel and the bots have fun sending it up, tossing references both ancient and modern (1950s big-car reviews, Joe Cocker) and initiating a riff that they’d repeat in later episodes until Joel put his foot down and forbade it: whistling the theme music to the NBC MYSTERY MOVIE when a flashlight shines at the camera. John Williams’ first movie soundtrack. Short subject: “Alphabet Antics.” Overall this show is fun and memorable, worth a second viewing.
THE BIG-SCARY-SOMETHING THREATENS IDYLLIC AMERICAN TOWN MOVIE:
EARTH VS. THE SPIDER (also known as “The Spider”), 1958, episode 313. Short Subject: “Speech: Using Your Voice,” whose 1950 narrator unwittingly used the term “plenty of lip-and-tongue action" to assure good speech, ensuring hilarity among Misties for years to come. SPIDER is about as middle-of-the-road as Fifties creature features get. While on his way home with his daughter’s birthday present, a motorist is wrecked and devoured (or drained) by an enormous spider. Concerned, the teenaged daughter and her equally teenaged boyfriend set out to see what’s what and get trapped in the spider’s cavern. Lots of confusion and terror until things are finally sorted out. Funniest example of cheesy production values: The spider seems to go from black to grey as the movie progresses. Strangest omission: Nobody told the fleeing schoolchildren to scream, so they stampede in silence. Joel demonstrates his flair for voicing monsters: “Hey, come back! I’m actually beneficial. I eat harmful household pests. Jim Morrison drank my venom,” and so on. Look fast for Hank Patterson (Arnold Ziffel’s “father” on GREEN ACRES) as the school janitor. Well worth a repeat viewing.
THE TWENTYSOMETHING “TEEN” CRIME MOVIE: TEEN-AGE CRIME WAVE, 1955, episode 522. Well, it isn’t REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE, but it’s watchable. Gritty Terry (Molly McCart) is rounded up for trying to hustle a bar patron; through no fault of her own her demure friend Jane (Sue England) is arrested, too. Both are headed for reform school when Terry's psychotic boyfriend Mike (Tommy Cook) springs them. They flee into the country and hole up in a remote farmhouse, taking hostage the owners. Most hostage movies have some slow-moving patches, and this is no exception. Fortunately, Mike and the bots do a fine job of stepping on lines to comic effect:
(Molly): “You might as well know we have a murder rap against us, so we have nothing to lose.” -- (Servo, speaking for Mother): “Well, I just put up some peach preserves.”
- - -
(Molly): “I don’t want to have any blasting in the house.” -- (Mike, speaking for Father): ”Can’t we just have a normal Thanksgiving where we drink and don’t talk to each other?”
This one’s not my favorite Mistie movie, but it’s solid enough. And finally:
THE FAILED MADE-FOR-TV SERIES PILOT MOVIE: AGENT FROM H.A.R.M., episode 815.
From Universal, an acronym sort-of-secret-agent movie (1967) that takes off from both the Bond franchise and THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., making this a derivative of a derivative. It’s a pretty bad movie; worse even than SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL, almost as bad as STRANDED IN SPACE. Wendell Corey is probably the best-known actor here and was given “Guest Star” status. This is the only movie of the four in color: good, solid, made-for-TV color. It’s everything else that is shaky. The McGuffin is a fungus that maims or disfigures its victims in a trice, but what’s really noticeable are the lackluster chases among vigorous musical interludes and the producers’ assumption that labeling buildings on the bad side of Malibu in Spanish (there WAS a bad side back then) would convince the audience they were in Mexico. There is a very pretty girl, though (Barbara Bouchet), and she shows up in a bikini often. Mike and the bots throw everything at this one, and it generally (not always) sticks. Expect LOTS of television references, also the sung James Bond theme (Da-Da DA-daah!). The weakest show of the four, I’d say. On the whole, though, I consider this compilation well worth owning.