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Holiday Shopping Guide 2007

Several cool DVDs and graphic novels that we’ve reviewed here on the Underground Film Journal have come out in the past couple of months, so I thought I’d highlight them for anyone looking for unusual gifts — either for friends and family or for yourself. Clicking on the titles will take you to purchasing info.

Documentaries:

Plagues & Pleasures on the Salton Sea, dir. Chris Metzler and Jeff Springer. Narrated by John Waters and featuring the spectre of Hairspray star Sonny Bono, take a trip to one of the worst ecological disasters in American history and meet the fine folks who still hold onto the dream. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Unspeakable, dir. Marc Rokoff. Who doesn’t want to peek into their stocking on Christmas morning and find a movie about a guy who paints with his own shit, gets his back carved up and has women peeing on the wounds? That’s what holiday dreams are made of. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Random Lunacy: Videos From the Road Less Traveled, dirs. Victor Zimet and Stephanie Silber. The holidays are about spending time with the family, right? Well, hang out with this family of wanderers led by the happily homeless Poppa Neutrino, who, among other things, started his own traveling circus in Mexico. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Fiction:

The Proper Care & Feeding of an American Messiah, dir. Chris Hansen. If you think Christmas is losing it’s religious edge, then spend some time with a messiah. Not “the” messiah, but the gastronomically-impaired messiah Brian B., who still has yet to find out his special purpose. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Half-Cocked, dir. Suki Hawley. Revisit the glory days of early ’90s indie rock with this definitive statement of the movement. Starring indie rock god Ian Svenonious of The Make-Up. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Experiments in Terror 2, dir. various. Enjoy a real nightmare before, on and after Christmas with this freakish collection of wicked short films by great experimental filmmakers, including Damon Packard, Bill Morrison, J.X. Williams, Usama Alshaibi and more. Curated by Noel Lawrence. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Graphic Novels:

Micrographica, written and illustrated by Renee French. A couple of small rodents are most definitely stirring in their quest for the perfect ball of crap and sandwiches in this tiny book that’s thick with laughs and attitude. Underground Film Journal review!

Muscles & Fights 1 & 2, curated by Bud Burgy and Amado Rodriguez. After loading up on sweets and pie over the holidays, release the tension from the resultant sugar rush with these dual collections of brawny showmanship. Underground Film Journal review 1Underground Film Journal review 2!

Perpetual Favorites:

Plaster Caster, dir. Jessica Everleth. What’s better than finding a plaster replica of Jimi Hendrix’s junk under the tree? Watching a documentary about the woman, Cynthia Plaster Caster, who made it. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Baggs: The Movie, dir. Jon Clark. If buying a time machine for a trip back to the ’80s is too expensive, save a couple of bucks by getting this dead-on perfect ode to a better, hacky-sackier era. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Frankensteins Bloody Nightmare, dir. John R. Hand. Tripping out on too many candy canes? Then enhance your psychedelic fugue state with this flick that’s two parts LSD flashback and one part blood-curdling horror. Underground Film Journal movie review!

Waiting for NESARA, dir. Zeb Haradon. The Underground Film Journal’s 2006 Movie of the Year discloses the secrets of a bizarre cult that believes George W. Bush is a space alien and Jesus is going to fly in from his space ship to save us all. Who knows, maybe he actually will this holiday season. Underground Film Journal movie review!