Starring: John Cannon, Rob Dimension, and Pigamortis Wrex.

Channel: Philly Cam on Comcast Channel 66/966 and Verizon Channel 29/30.

Air Time: Thursdays and Saturdays at midnight.

Review: Master Filmmaker Mark Mackner

Greetings, all you ghouls, ghosts, goblins, gremlins, etc.! Tis I, local indie horror icon MASTER FILMMAKER MARK MACKNER, taking a look at a really terrific locally-produced show LATE NIGHT AT THE HORROR HOTEL!!!!

I popped in the first disc I was sent for review, and from the first line of the opening theme, I was hooked. The song begins “You’ll see Bela Lugosi and Christopher Lee standing at the bar…” OK, as all of you know, I’m a huge fan of CLASSIC horror, so already, they’ve got my attention. But, I’m getting ahead of myself here. What is “Late Night at the Horror Hotel”? Well, it’s not only a throwback, but it’s a loving homage to shows like VAMPIRA, ELVIRA, DR. SHOCK, SATURDAY NIGHT DEAD. It’s the kind of thing we just don’t see anymore. Which begs the question… WHY???? If you were a Monster Kid like me, you grew up with these shows. You laughed at the corny jokes, and you marveled at the awesomeness at the wonderfully low-budget films they showed. That’s what “Late Night” is. And it’s great to have something like this back on the air.

Another thing that’s great to have back on the air… GIANT MONSTER MOVIES! KAIJU! Most of the episodes so far have been all about KAIJU, my all-time favorite sub-genre. It’s so great to see that someone is broadcasting these cinema gems once again, and it’s even better that they’re real fans of the films, too. The hosts, Rob and John, do brief DVD reviews of other kaiju films on the show, and it’s a joy to see people get excited about these films because I sure don’t meet enough people who truly appreciate them. Sure, everyone loves zombies and vampires, but I don’t often meet folks who understand and respect the brilliance that goes into making a film about a giant prehistoric radioactive flying turtle. But these guys get it. And that’s awesome.

The films are time-honored classics that speak for themselves. But what about the “Late Night” segments featuring the show’s very own cast of characters? Well, they make great use of a laugh track, their reviews are brief yet informative, and I love the running gag where Rob falls back, waiting for the day that he can trust John to catch him. Other highlights include Rob playing with a Gamera toy and little army men, the “What Should You Do?” skit, Creature Cooking, and the music. I really dig the music! Oh, and the bit during ATTACK OF THE MONSTERS (aka GAMERA vs. GUIRON) when Gamera flips around that bar and hits that perfect landing, and the “Late Night” guys flip their Olympic scorecards up was sublime.

So, if you’re old enough to have grown up with movies like GAPPA THE TRI-PHIBIAN MONSTERS, and CHILLER THEATER, this is the show for you. And if you’re younger and you just dig monster movies, and you wanna watch ‘em with some guys who, like me, may very well have green blood like Gamera, then do yourself a favor and tune in!

And THAT is THE WORD, so sayeth THE MASTER!!!!!

(MASTER FILMMAKER MARK MACKNER is the resident Poptards Spider-Man nut, and the author of SPIDEY’S WEEKLY WEB-UP right here on this site! Also, true to his name, he is the writer/director of the locally made films DAISY DERKINS, DOGSITTER OF THE DAMNED!, EVIL BREW, and THE HALF-LIFE HORROR FROM HELL or: IRRADIATED SATAN ROCKS THE WORLD! He is a co-founder of SICKENING THUD FILMS.)

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