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Motion Picture Purgatory: THE WOMAN INSIDE (1981)

Exploitation movies have had an interest in transgender individuals and gender reassignment surgery dates back at least to Ed Wood and his groundbreaking docudrama GLEN OR GLENDA?, based, at least in part, on the Christine Jorgensen case. As uncovered by Rick Trembles‘ latest Motion Picture Purgatory, the subject was still being mined in the 1980s when this rarely seen, U.S./Canada co-production hit theatres. Starring aging Hollywood talent including Joan Blondell, Dane Clark, Joe E. Ross and Jackie Vernon, it’s a low budget, melodramatic effort that at least tries to sensitively handle pertinent issues for its era. Rick sez:

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Motion Picture Purgatory: THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME (1979)

A film milestone created by a cinematic visionary, THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME (1935) is a brilliant British-produced work about futurism and revolutionary politics. Forty years later, Canada started work on a loose remake with Jack Palance and dumb robots. Guess which is the subject of Rick Trembles’ Motion Picture Purgatory this month? Rick sez:

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Motion Picture Purgatory: UPS & DOWNS (1981)

After the success of Bob Clark’s PORKY’s, Canadian-born director Paul Almond tried his own more CanCon-approved spin on teen hijinks movies with his 1981 prep school effort UPS & DOWNS. But whereas Clark used social issue to spice up the sex comedy, Almond’s effort generally comes off like a particularly limp episode of DEGRASSI JUNIOR HIGH with an annoying New Wave ’80s soundtrack. Rick sez:

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Motion Picture Purgatory: ETERNAL EVIL (1985)

After creating the quintessential Canadian slasher My Bloody Valentine, director George Mihalka turned his attention from the depths of the mine to the depths of the mind. His 1985 horror follow-up Eternal Evil, also released on VHS as The Blue Man, is Mihalka’s strange tale of astral projection with a bigger-than-life performance from genre mainstay Karen Black and a light sprinkling of Cronenberg-isms tossed in for good measure. Rick sez:

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Motion Picture Purgatory: EMPIRE OF ASH (1988)

Mad Max eh? Lloyd Simand’s Empire of Ash, perhaps the only movie misleadingly re-released as a sequel to itself, goes under the microscope for
Rick Trembles‘ latest Motion Picture Purgatory. A jumbled mess of bloodsucking, explosions, hair metal and sweet post-apocalyptic rides, it’s one of the few post-apocalyptic Canadian films to ever see a video store shelf (plus I’d still take it over Last Night any day of the week). Rick sez:

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