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August 2012
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Syndication

After last week’s Christian Slater fiasco, I was a little wary of dipping my toes in the Christian Slater pool once more. It’s true that the chances of Dolan’s Cadillac being as mind-boggling as Without Men were significantly lower, considering that it was once set to star Sylvester Stallone and Kevin Bacon (as opposed to the average WDIE film, which usually just goes back to whatever gross broom closet of the mind it was originally found in). But I had promised this week’s guest to do this film and, after a couple of weeks of just being horrified and baffled, I could’ve used a pleasant surprise.

Well, there was a surprise all right: Slater wasn’t the worst part of this by a country mile. Wes Bentley was. The dark-featured emoest of all teens from American Beauty places his waxy stare and furrowed front and center of this otherwise serviceable revenge flick. Of course, I later found out that Bentley shot this film in the darkest part of his heroin addiction, which I guess excuses some of the shittiness of the performance. Either way, he tries very hard to ruin this movie for everyone.

Returning for a second appearance before the dreaded Move to Toronto that has already claimed one of your esteemed hosts is David Bertrand of the late Blue Sunshine Psychotronic Film Centre. We discuss the weirdly pedo overtones of Million Dollar Crocodile, Mandingo, the archaic machinery used to subtitle movies that already have subtitles, the myriad of wonders held within the LP sleeve of Babe Ruth’s First Step and what the original short story by Stephen King means to him.

In Town with a Capital T off the album Good Dreams by Galen Hartley can be found here. For more information about Galen Hartley, visit his homepage. 

Direct download: Why_Does_It_Exist_-_038_-_Dolans_Cadillac.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:39pm EDT

Despite doing minimal research on the films we cover, I like to think that I have a pretty good idea of what kind of movie I select each week. Without Men originally escaped my reach due to seeming in all ways like a pretty generic romantic comedy, despite the prominent placement of Christian Slater on the cover. When I read that it was based on an acclaimed novel about a South American village faced with a sudden lack of men after the male populace is recruited by a guerilla army, however, my interest was piqued. How do you take this NPR-friendly premise and turn into a straight to DVD romantic comedy?

The answer is baffling. Pitched somewhere between an episode of I Love Lucy, a Pedro Almodovar film and an entry in the National Lampoon series, Without Men is one of the least funny, corniest and most inexplicable film to ever be featured on Why Does It Exist? Lesbian subplots, group masturbation scenes, musical sequences, Oscar from The Office as a randy town priest and a harried Slater barely factoring into plot crash into an grey, mushy sludge from which no one escapes unscathed, least of all me and  this week’s guest,  onetime DVD thief Lizel Chavez.

Music this week by Cobra & Vulture – their song Early Adopter can be found on the Vocare EP, available here. They will be performing as part of Pop Montreal (schedule available here soon) as well as Phog Phest in Windsor this September.

Direct download: Why_Does_It_Exist_-_037_-_Without_Men.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:11pm EDT

One of the things that Why Does It Exist? has taught me is that you can get away with a shit-ton of dubious legal measures if you exist somewhere in the nether regions of Hollywood. After last week’s egregious ripoff of many of Hollywood’s best-loved films, we tackle Brando Unauthorized, a biopic done without any consent from the Brando estate and with all the integrity of a dollar-store R-Patz biography. Triple-threat auteur Damian Chapa (who has also portrayed Roman Polanski,  produces, directs and stars as Brando, a particularly brave move considering this lumpy fortysomething also portrays Brando at the tender age of 16 - certainly the world’s doughiest sex symbol.

As told through the eyes of Brando’s no-goodnik junkie murderer son Christian, Brando Unauthorized celebrates the great actor and innovator for everything he did that was of no particular worth: showing his ass to Talia Shire, multiple fisticuffs and extramarital affairs, telling his dad to stick it where the sun don’t shine and various other sundry melodramatic nonsense. If Ulli Lommel somehow began directing fiction features for TMZ, it would look something like Brando Unauthorized.

Having reserved Brando Unauthorized months ago, WDIE contributor and workhorse pedant Mickey O’Narey joins us for a frank discussion of what Brando means to this world as well as a lot of gesticulating and microphone-peaking impressions of Brando. NOTE: Why Does It Exist? does not condone or condemn the usage of dubious Jersey Shore impressions.

Dragon BFF by Which is Which is the featured track this week. You can find it on the 5 Songs About Creatures EP. Which is Which is performing as part of the FAST Festival in Sorel on August 17th and the Musique en Folie festival in Valleyfield on the 18th as well as La Sala Rossa in Montreal on September 30th.

Direct download: Why_Does_It_Exist_-_036_-_Brando_Unauthorized.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:30pm EDT

And so, all things move towards their end. Episode 35 marks the final episode with Dan as the weekly co-host of Why Does It Exist? as our furry friend moves on to the greener pastures of Ontario, where he'll pursue his dream of being a railroad hobo. Worry not, gentle fans; Why Does It Exist? is not going anywhere. We've decided to celebrate this momentous sliver of time with Eldorado, a film that has long been taunting us with its seemingly endless runtime of TWO FREAKING HOURS.

Sure, for your average film, two hours isn't much. But for this incomprehensible, mind-melting mish-mash of The Blues Brothers, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Reservoir Dogs, Heaven Can Wait, Kung Fu, Blazing Saddles and every other staple under the sun, it's downright perverse. Jewish Blues Brothers impersonators The Jews Brothers end up facing off with sick cannibal killers in this musical that replaces the original songs with terrible canned bar-band covers and manages somehow to shorehorn in performances by Michael Madsen, Darryl Hannah, David Carradine, Drop Dead Fred's Rik Mayall, Steve Guttenberg, Brigette Nielsen, Jeff Fahey, Patrick Bergin, Bill Moseley and Peter O'Toole in a series of intentional mishaps that may or may not be legal. This quintessentially WDIE film was, unbeknownst to us, a pitch-perfect way to usher Dan into the 'occasional co-host' role.

Music this week by alter egos. The song Native Tongue off their Free States EP can be found at their Bandcamp. They will be performing at Saint-Ciboire (1693 Saint-Denis) on August 13th, 2012 at 9:30 PM.

Direct download: Why_Does_It_Exist_-_035_-_Eldorado.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:07pm EDT

Because we hadn't seen Dan in some time, we decided to pick up where we left off: teen movies from the turn of the century, preferably of the obscure and unreleasable kind. Bad Girls from Valley High is a Heathers-ish black comedy that sat on the shelf for more than five years despite the presence of an Outsiders-like cast of up-and-coming talent (Julie Benz! Monica Keena! Chris D'Elia! Aaron Paul!) and established A-listers like Christopher Lloyd and Janet Leigh in its midst. We guessed it was most likely because it would be terrible; we discovered it was mostly because it was bungled genius. 

As we don't mention on the episode because we didn't know at the time, Bad Girls from Valley High is adapted from a Goosebumps-ish parody of young adult literature. Due to a lack of budget and schizophrenic tone, this doesn't really come across in the movie, leaving instead Aaron Paul's award-worthy portrayal of snivelling nerdery and Lloyd's background pratfalls to deliver 1/10th of the promised genius. Also discussed in this episode: boners, Breaking Bad, teen heartthrob Rider Strong, Dan's imminent (but not fatal) move to Toronto, why Alex doesn't like Jay Mohr, the douchiness of Danier-style leather jackets, etc.

Music this week by The Hawks. The song Eclipsed can be found on their Bandcamp. They will be opening for Young Men at Il Motore on August 16th.

Direct download: Why_Does_It_Exist_-_034_-_Bad_Girls_from_Valley_High.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:03pm EDT

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