At The Movies Archive

By Robert Long II copyright 2021

The CRAWLER DVD has been out for a couple of months at the time of this writing. I have only had a chance to get a couple of copies out for review. One to Joe Bob Briggs, and the other to Horror DNA. Today Zigzag of Horror DNA posted his review of the movie. It can be read HERE.

The review is very… middling. The movie comes out to be very average in the eyes of the reviewer. I happen to know Zigzag; I sent him the copy. I would expect him to be nothing but honest, and showing us no favoritism. True to his word, he gave an honest account of his viewing experience. After 15 years of work, it’s tough to hear that what was produced was… mediocre.

He brings up that Don (Dohler) had gone back to the well once again – for the fifth time – with the “alien lands in rural America and runs amuck.” If I am to be honest, I don’t know why Don kept going back to that same story, and just trying to vary it a little. It doesn’t show a lot of growth or range. Sometimes you have to get out of the backyard.

An illustration of the CRAWLER

ZigZag also brought up that audiences shouldn’t expect an Oscar-worthy Hollywood effects team to have made the CGI creature with top of the line software. It was just a couple of guys using Photoshop, Blender, and Adobe After Effects to the best of their ability. Now, I’m very proud with how the creature turned out, but the fact that in the review – there is not ONE screen grab of the monster – is very telling. He goes on to state that the crew took there sweet time getting the effects done – due to real life getting in the way. Believe me, I WISH we had gotten it done a lot sooner.

Zigzag goes on to remark that there are still two Timewarp Films to be released. To be honest – between you and me? I don’t think that’s going to happen.

I have a couple more copies of the movie that I’m sending out for review. In the end, we got Don Dohler’s last movie finished and out for distribution. We did what we set out to do. Will there be a premiere? I doubt it. The Don Dohler fans seem to enjoy it, but then the Dohler fans are going to be biased to enjoying and approving it.

Bottom line is that I guess I’ll have to wait for more reviews to come in before I can take a real reading on the movie. We tried to honor a friend’s memory. Maybe the last 15 years have been a waste of energy. Time will tell.

You can finally buy it!

CRUNCH! There’s something out in the woods hunting human prey. It’s intelligent, evil, and very hungry. CRAWLER has fallen from the stars, and brings a path of destruction with him. 

Don Dohler and Joe Ripple

Crawler is a science fiction/horror movie that was finally completed. This is the final collaboration between Timewarp Films Producer Don Dohler and Director Joe Ripple. Main production shooting finished in 2003, but the special visual effects were completed in late 2019. It is now distributed on DVD through Alpha Video.

The military is deployed.

Anyone familiar with Don Dohler’s body of work will find CRAWLER fits right into it. A meteor crash lands in the suburbs of Baltimore. An intelligent creature emerges from the meteorite and begins to eat its way through the local population. Three U.F.O. fanatics clash with the military that have been sent to capture the creature before the mass populace gets wise. What follows is a blood bath. 

People are getting it! Have you?

This motion picture stars Justin Timpane (Ninjas vs Zombies), Darla Albornoz (Vampire Sisters), Daniel Ross (The Disney Channel) with cameo appearances from Dohler mainstays George Stover (Desperate Living), Richard Dyszel (Nightbeast), and Don Leifert (Fiend).

Crawler Trailer

Timewarp Films had finished and premiered DEAD HUNT in the Spring of 2006. Shortly afterwards, Don Dohler was diagnosed with two forms of cancer. Before his death in early December of that year, Dohler had discussed what needed to be done to finish CRAWLER, with visual effects artist Mitch Klein. 

Robert Long joined Mitch Klein in creating the visual effects to finish out the production. The reason it took over a decade to complete is that this is a low budget production and real life gets in the way. Family, jobs, personal emergencies, etc. get in the way. Plus the 3D software had to be updated after so many years… it got complicated. But at the end of it all, Mitch Klein and his visual effects team pulled through and completed the film in honor of Dohler’s memory. 

Joe Bob DOES have a copy…

The CRAWLER team are looking forward to reviews from such movie reviewers as Joe Bob Briggs, HorrorDNA, and The After Movie Diner… among others. The DVD contains the feature presentation, the trailer, a making of documentary,  a Don Leifert tribute interview, and a couple of Easter eggs. It has monsters, boobs, gore, violence, and action! A must for any Don Dohler completist. Get it today!

I had the pleasure to e-chat with filmmaker Michael Leavy of Fuzz on the Lens Productions the other day. His company is producing a cool new horror movie, and wants all horror fans to be involved. The name of the project is STREAM.

Talented cast for a killer movie

With a stellar cast and crew (more on them later) the story is about a family that feels it may be drifting apart, decide to do some family bonding by recreating a vacation they had taken previously; they head to a quaint hotel. Unfortunately, at the same time four serial killers from the dark web are gearing up to play a game of “kill as many people that you can” at the same hotel. Makes me think the family might not have a good time…

STREAM boasts an INCREDIBLE cast including such horror luminaries:

Danielle Harris (Halloween 4 and 5)

Jeffrey Combs (Re-animator, The Frighteners)

Dee Wallace (E.T., The Howling, Cujo)

David Howard Thornton (Terrifier 1 and 2)

Felissa Rose (Sleep Away Camp)

Daniel Roebuck (The Fugitive, The Munsters)

+ a zillion more talented, familiar faces in horror!

The production is being done by Fuzz on the Lens Productions, in conjunction with other superb professionals in the biz – including Terrifier’s Damian Leone, George Steuber, and Phil Falcone. You know this is going to look DAMN GOOD.

STREAM is almost done. The majority of it was completed during the Covid lockdown. Safety was the primary concern for all involved, so there were scenes that couldn’t be filmed, and the Covid safety costs bit into the budget. The producers are gearing up to complete it now that things are safer, and want horror fans involved. So, an IndieGoGo campaign has been launched.

STREAM has set up a tier system of goals and perks to get completion funds. This will allow the team to hire the remaining talent, shoot the scenes that need to be done, and get into post production as soon as possible.  They’ve set up a great page to check out – INDIEGOGO – and a Facebook page as well. They got some damn cool perks!

So come on horror fans, “put some skin in the game.” Back STREAM.

Bad Movie Night discusses STAKES

What the bloody hell? I’m doing an update? Yes, 2020 was one hell of a bust for everyone. I did do some Youtube videos (more on that later). It is a new year, and we are going to get vaccinated, and we will get back to normal. So let’s get some independent film news out there! First off – as you can see above – the Bad Movie Night guys talk about Timewarp Films 2002 production STAKES. Produced by Don Dohler and directed by Joe Ripple, it is a story of two parallel worlds battling an army of Vampires. The movie stars genre legend George Stover as the ass kicking rogue priest and Scream Queen Leanna Chamish as the evil Vampire Queen. The Bad Movie Night dudes kind of take the piss out of the film from time to time in their review, but by the end they loved it and strongly recommend this indie cult flick. Check out the video. Just don’t check out any videos by Obscura Lupa. Her reviews are forced, unfunny and she has no talent.

Madman Majestro is on Youtube!

While I didn’t get a whole lot done on the website last year, my alter ego got videos made! Madman Majestro of the Madhouse Manor has been doing indie movie reviews on Youtube as well as hosting a Tuesday night KAST party where he shows cool genre movies and chats with his live audience. This video above is all about the cool friggin’ swag that can be gotten from the Madhouse Manor. Check it out!

Lil’ Maddy Majestro from superfan Tammy Bradburn

Speaking of Madman Majestro, I’ve been receiving some really cool gifts from fans! The first thing I got was a fun cartoon of Majestro from Director Chris LaMartina – it’s up on the fridge! Tammy Bradburn sent me a knitted voodoo plushie of myself, which is adorable. She also did an incredible horror-themed cross-stitch for me! Both will be on the show soon! Thanks everybody!

Fanex saluted the incredible Forry Ackerman

Prolific publishers Gary and Sue Svehla held a Fanex convention back in 2001 and saluted the legendary sci fi and horror icon – Forry Ackerman – at their awards ceremony. Fanzine publishers and editors from around the United States gathered to honor Forry for his lifetime of dedication to his craft. A ton of familiar faces tell tales out of school about everybody’s favorite “Ackerman.” The video is introduced by Leanna Chamish.

Actor/Writer Steve Rifkin

Fowl Players Radio gives Actor/Writer Steve Rifkin the VIP treatment in talking to him about his indie film career. Check out this fantastic interview!

MORE COMING SOON!

A belated happy birthday to friend of the site – the incredibly talented actor David Howard Thornton. He of course is the star of the movie TERRIFIER (playing Art the Clown). He is also superb as the Joker in a web series. He celebrated his birthday November 30th and we wish him the best!

I’ve actually posted two new reviews! The first being James Ian Mair’s THE MAKER OF MONSTERS. It stars genre legends George Stover and Leanna Chamish. The movie is along the lines of the 1957 film THE UNEARTHLY. You can find out what I thought about it HERE. 

Also I have given an indepthed report on Kevin Kangas’ new movie TERRORTORY II. The sequel is even better than the first installment! Find out all the details HERE.

Due to a recent move and a change in jobs there hasn’t been time to do much lately. However things are settling down and I have big plans for the site in 2019. Stay tuned…

 

So this 2018 – what can you say about it? Well I lost my possessions in a flood and just lost my job. While trying to piece my life back together I thought I’d try to do an update. Yes, it has been a while hasn’t it?

So first up I did a new review for an indie dramedy called FISHBOWL CALIFORNIA. To find out my thoughts on it, the link is HERE.

Trying to stay on a course of reviewing indie films that are not just horror or sci-fi, I checked out a movie called LIMITS TO AMBITION because one of the leads is my buddy Leanna Chamish. The plot is about a German immigrant that comes to the USA, has sexual doubts and anxiety with his male best friend. He starts dating a gal that may or may not be a man. There is also a serial killer thrown in the mix.

There will not be a formal review of this film as I found it boring. It is too long, poorly lit, poorly edited, and the lead male actor has a derpy, pouty look on his face the entire movie. Avoid.

Filmmaker Kevin Kangas is at it again with the sequel to his previous movie. Welcome to TERRORTORY II.

Actors Frederick Cowie and Richard Cutting return from the first film. Ali Lukowski, Stormi Maya and George Stover join the cast for one of the horror segments.

Kangas takes the audience back into the cursed woods for more frights and delights. He is currently in post production for the movie, and talks of there being a Fall premiere. Stay tuned…

Filmmaker James Ian Mair came into the Baltimore area to work with local celebrities George Stover and Leanna Chamish. Talking to the actors the shoot went well. Looking forward to seeing the finished product!

Filmmaker Wayne Shipley is in post production on his 3rd Western titled “Bill Tighman and the Outlaws.” It stars Robert Carradine and Lana Woods, as well as East Coast favorites George Stover, Richard Cutting, Brian St. August, Lee Doll and Leanna Chamish.

 

After months of exploding computers I have finally – FINALLY – finished the TERRIFIER trilogy for Smash or Trash. What that means it that the lengthly, in detail retrospective analysis of Damien Leone’s ALL HALLOWS EVE and TERRIFIER are live, as well as the special bonus of two fantastic interviews from actors David Howard Thornton and Jenna Kanell. Enjoy, share a link to the page and make sure to leave a comment!

Today Smash or Trash Independent Filmmaking celebrates it 10th Anniversary. Wow! What a fun roller coaster ride it has been! So many reviews and interviews of fantastic people in the indie film business. So many opportunities to be part of the independent film scene on both coasts! So many blessed experiences.

There are so many people to thank, that I really, really can’t name them here, cause I KNOW I will miss someone very important. I do want to thank my partners in crime Leanna Chamish and Mitch Klein, whom have helped me from the very beginning. Frank Lama for being an incredible producer and co host on the Smash or Trash television program. Les Bradley for his editing know how and friendship. I am very much in debt to these people. And for everyone else that has contributed to the website, you have my gratitude.

March has some great things in store for fans of indie films. I take an in-depth look into Damien Leone’s ALL HALLOW’S EVE and TERRIFIER. Plus I have some incredible interviews with two of the stars of TERRIFIER – David Howard Thornton and Jenna Kanell. Both are incredibly talented and super fun to talk to.

Also, I take a look at Joe Sherlock’s slasher THE BLOOD CREEK WOODSMAN. Joe has been a friend for years and it is great to see just how far he has come as a filmmaker.

Smash or Trash takes a look at Brad Twigg’s KILLER CAMPOUT as well. With tongue firmly in cheek, it’s a backwoods slasher romp with plenty of blood and some fun cameos from genre legends John Russo, Herschell Gorden Lewis and George Stover.

We also catch up with Lisa Mikitarian and how her LA screening of the indie comedy SPENT went.

And last but not least – with the weather getting nice again we go into overdrive with the upcoming filming of MY movie – MADHOUSE MANOR.

I am very proud that over the years on this site, we have branched out beyond the confines of just reviewing indie horror and sci fi. We have pushed that envelope and have covered indie dramas, rom coms, comedies, musicals and even westerns!

Here’s to another 10 years!

Robert Long

Smash or Trash Independent Filmmaking

Jimmy George and Chris LaMartina’s WNUF: HALLOWEEN SPECIAL gets another great review – and even features yours truly prominently! Link is HERE.

Filmmaker Kevin Kangas is making progress with his new anthology horror movie TERRORTORY 2. Stay Tuned…