Monday, November 10, 2014

The 80's Called: Go-Go

Looks like the 80's just ain't going nowhere, fast, as this week showed people still want their Starlog Magazine, 8-bit video games, VHS movie trailers and schlocktastic studio of the future, Cannon Films.  So cancel your Saturday night date, break out the 2-liter of Shasta and crank up the synth wave as we round up all things great eight...ies.

- Non-profit The Internet Archive out of San Francisco looks to provide historians, scholars and the general public permanent access to digital records.  Amongst their archives are over 200 issues of Starlog Magazine, the publication devoted to science fiction films, books and television series that had it's heyday in the 80's.  Started by Kerry O'Quinn and Norman Jacobs with a later assist from David Houston as a one off guide to Star Trek, Starlog expanded into regular printing and ran from 1976 to 2009 for 375 issues.  The company also published Comics Scene and Fangoria, focusing on comic book adaptations and horror films among other titles.

- The Internet Archive also unveiled over 900 8-bit coin-operated arcade game titles emulated for online play.  As mall arcades died out in the 90's, you can save your quarters and spend your free time playing classics like Bionic Commando, Street Fighter II, Galaga, Golden Axe, Q*Bert, Dig Dug and Burger Time online instead.

- Speaking of video games, remember River City Ransom?  The Double Dragon-esque NES beat'em up game where you went around punching dudes with brass knuckles and eating ramen?  An officially licensed sequel, Underground, is on the way via a successfully funded Kickstarter campaign that revisits and expands upon Alex and Ryan's army'ing into River City looking for a kidnapped girlfriend.

- YouTube masher upper extraordinaire Chiefbrodyrules dropped his latest creation, a VHS, 80's style trailer for Captain America: Winter Soldier.  Complete with Cannon Films logo, tracking lines and synth soundtrack, Brody culls footage from the Cap flicks, Avengers, Robocop, Scott Pilgrim VS The World, Machete and Nick of Time to create an awesome time capsule made way outside the actual era.

- And we can't reminisce about the 80's without talking about Cannon Films now can we?  It's been a busy year for the former Go-Go boys of Hollywood with two documentaries hitting screens heightening their profile and the passing of co-founder Menahem Golan cementing their legacy.  After several years in the making, Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films finished production and began rolling out at various film festivals.  Featuring interviews with studio staples and stars like Michael Dudikoff, Dolph Lundgren, Tobe Hooper and Sam Firstenberg; the love letter to pre-sold, hastily made, schlocky exploitation fare sure to include nudity, action and or horror has been a hit with viewers.

Founders Golan and Yoram Globus were scheduled to participate but then in true Cannon fashion, created their own documentary called The Go-Go Boys: Inside Cannon Films to beat Boogaloo to the punch.  At the Cannes Film Festival in May, the two former mini-moguls held court for a screening and attendees could check out both documentaries over the festivals run.  Sadly, in August, 85 year old Golan passed away.

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