Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy)

The Manson Family (1988-2003)

I suppose I should explain the date(s) above.  Independent filmmaker James Van Bebber started to film his no-budget Manson film in 1988. The guy who played Manson lived on a ranch/farm, and his dad had some animals on that property. It was a suitable location to recreate the storied Spahn ranch, a location which had been used for many films and a place where Manson and his family had lived for some time. The director had a vague inkling that he could finish his film with his mostly volunteer cast in a few weekends of shooting at that ranch.

He was close. He finally finished the film 16 years later.

The finished movie basically consists of three parts:

(1) The events which took place from 1967-69

(2) A framing device about a documentary film producer who interviews the members of the Manson Family many years after the original events, as they reflect back on what happened through self-serving and often contradictory accounts. The producer himself offers the "straight" perspective on the events. (Laurence Merrick, the producer of a 1973 documentary called Manson, was actually murdered in 1977. This event, and speculation that Manson supporters might be involved, formed the basis for the otherwise fictional framing device.)

(3) A sub-plot about some latter day Goths who have taken Manson as their counter-cultural icon, and plot to murder the producer of the documentary.

Those first few weekends at the ranch did manage to complete a big chunk of the film, which is to say most of section 1 above - from the peaceful hippie days until the Gary Hinman murder.

The rest of it was harder to do. A lot harder. Money ran out, and the guy who played Manson actually left the production. The Goth sub-plot, with four new actors, was added in 1996. The family member interviews were shot catch-as-catch-can. In one sense, the long delays in filming provided a benefit that no-budget independent filmmakers rarely achieve - the actors' aging was completely believable, because the normal process of cheap make-up effects was replaced, or at least supplemented, by the natural aging process. The actors had aged about as much as the characters were supposed to.

Van Bebber took an unfinished version of his film to FanTasia Montreal in 1997, at which time he made a deal to get some completion money. That deal fell through, and he was back to scratching and saving again. Miraculously, he did eventually manage to complete the project, and the film swung small theatrical distribution deals in the U.K. and the U.S.A. The British reviews were weak, but the American reviews included a fair share of praise. Two highly respected reviewers had some positive reactions. Roger Ebert raised a few eyebrows by seeing the film and awarding it three stars, although he kind of held his nose while doing that. Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly chimed in with some praise and a B-.

To me the effusive praises and pans of this movie boil down more to the nature of the observers than to the quality of the film itself. The film is what it is, and it is all out there in the open. On the debatable side, the film takes the stance that the Tate-Lobianca murders had nothing to do with Vincent Bugliosi's famous Helter-Skelter theory, but that they were simply meant to exonerate a family member for an earlier murder by showing that the killer was still at large. On the negative side, the acting troupe consists of amateurs, some of the effects and make-up are laughably bad, and the Goth subplot seems unnecessary, clumsy, and tacked-on. On the positive side, the film recreates the look of old newsreel footage, old home movies, and 1960's underground films, and the director does a good job of making the viewer feel present with the family at the actual events, down to all the nitty-gritty details of the sex, drugs, and violence. Although it is a low budget film with amateur participants, the sex and violence looks real, and the film gives off the feel of the films of that era, as well as the actual acid-warped experiences which inspired many of those films.

In essence, it was neither the negative elements nor the debatable ones that inspired the most negative reviews. It was, ironically enough, the greatest strength of the movie that caused the harshest criticism, and that is the real point of this essay. You see, the sex and violence and drug use looks real. There have been many, many filmed accounts of the Manson murders, from docudramas to fiction to documentaries, but none of the previous efforts has ever tried to show what it was really like to be there and see Sharon Tate stabbed all those times, or to be lying on the grass next to the family members as they created one of their frenzied, drug-fueled orgies. This film does all of that, and does it convincingly and graphically. Van Bebber does not pull away his gaze when a more traditional filmmaker would.

Is that good or bad?

If you want to be coldly objective, you'd have to say that it is good filmmaking when the director makes you feel that you were a participant in the events portrayed, or at least that you were a fly on the wall. Critics did not all agree with my last statement, however. Some felt that the recreation of that sex, that drug use, and particularly that violence was simply a way to use tragic real events to justify the creation of a cheap exploitation film, which was akin to making a porn film about the holocaust. Those on the opposite side felt that the film's accurate portrayal was the one way to convey the true monstrosity of the people involved, and to show how the gentle hippies underwent a metamorphosis into blood-letting sadists, a transition which the sanitized film versions could never explain convincingly.

I'll leave the spin to you. I suppose about half of you will fall into each camp.  What I will state with some certainty is that the sex, drug use, and violence does seem real, and feels intense because it is driven by fast edits, desperate screams, and a hard beat on the sound track. It took Oliver Stone a massive budget with a lot of big stars to recreate this era in The Doors, but Van Bebber accomplished something very similar on a shoestring. That was an achievement. Is it something I enjoyed watching and would want to watch again? Hell, no. But that doesn't mean it isn't worthwhile in some way. That which disgusts me is not necessarily bad by definition. In fact, it's possible to argue that, given the subject matter, it would be bad if it did NOT disgust me.

Leslie Orr
Maureen Allisse
Unknowns (probably including some more of Orr and Allisse)


Words and pictures from Hankster.  

Today would have to be called a "Damsel in Distress" day as we took the Time Machine back to 1982 for "Death Wish 2" the second installment of that Charles Bronson series. I guess those movies, rather graphic and exploitive in their day, would be either a love'm or hate'm for most people.

Anyway we have a trio of "Damsels" at the hands of some pretty nasty punks.

First up is Melody Santangelo grabbed by the punks in a parking garage and has her nice tits exposed before our boy Charles shoots up the bad boys.
Next up is the most graphic and controversial scene in the movie as Silvano Gilardo playing Bronson's maid  is roughed up, raped and murdered by the baddies, in the process winding up stark naked.  

Then Robin Sherwood, Bronson's daughter kidnapped by the punks, exposes her boobs.  


Words and pictures from Dann

Perhaps the best actor in Snapped, as 2005 direct-to-video horror flick, is Gabriela Phillips, whose character slits her own throat (without saying anything) in the first 30 seconds of the movie. The rest of the cast is straight from Mr. Foster's 4th grade acting class. This absolutely dreadful mess of a movie wasn't even saved by a plot that was somewhat different and interesting.

Amy is offered a job shooting death photographs for a weird gallery that specializes in macabre offerings. She declines at first, but then accepts an advance to avoid being kicked out of her apartment.

She pays her rent, but then her junkie boyfriend steals the remaining money, and the landlord comes looking for the rent again, telling her "unless you have a receipt, you gotta pay", and of course, he didn't give her a receipt the first time around. As the day keeps getting worse and worse, Amy decides the best way to shoot death photographs may be with real dead people.

See, the plot holds promise, but execution killed this one as dead as the subjects in Amy's photographs

Gabrielle Phillips

Leslie Veenendaal

The Crimson Ghost

Pics of Julianna Sterling from the series "Bedtime Stories"

Seņor Piel

  Schneeland (2005)
Julia Jentsch

Dead Women in Lingerie (1991)

Maura Tierney

The Girl in the Cafe (2005)

Kelly MacDonald

Drole de genre (2003)

Cecile Magnet
Agnes Soral


Anja Lundkvist in Tillsammens (2000)
Film (zipped. avi) clip of Anja Lundkvist in Tillsammens (2000)
Film (zipped .avi) clip of Jessica Liedberg in Tillsammens (2000)


The women of  Demoniacs, one of Jean Rollin's typical "supernatural twin lesbian" classics.
Lee Ann Rimes in black, with nothing solid beneath, caught by the flashbulbs.
Jessica Alba caught by the paparazzi, showing a bit of her bum.
Fay Wray in the uncut version of King Kong
Carla Gugino in a tremendous, nearly DVD-quality, clip from Sin City (Zipped .avi ).
Lynda Carter in caps from Battle of the Network Stars. In a bathing suit, a quarter of a century ago, but still highly recommended. Added bonus: Adrienne Barbeau. (Zipped .avi).
Paula Prentiss - her famous frontal nude scene from Catch 22. (Zipped .wmv).

Pat Reeder - The Comedy Wire

Pat's Comments in yellow:

Astronomer Mike Brown of the California Institute of Technology believes he's discovered a 10th planet in our solar system.  Tentatively named "2003-UB313," it's beyond Pluto and 1-1/2 times Pluto's size, and is the farthest object yet discovered that orbits our sun.  If
confirmed, it would be the first new planet discovered since Pluto in 1930.  Brown said, "Get out your pens.  Start re-writing textbooks today."

*  Can't we want until they think up a catchier name?
*  As if kids today didn't have a hard enough time remembering nine planets.
*  It's actually farther away than Britney Spears' next hit record.
*  To see it, look beyond Pluto, and on the dark side of Uranus.

Iraq's national security advisor told CNN that Saddam Hussein's trial will air on live television.  He said it will show the Arab and Muslim world "that this is going to be a fair, just trial with a defense counsel in there, with a proper prosecuting counsel as well there," and that "everybody will watch."

*  Unless he shows up in those baggy white briefs.
*  As long as the trial wraps up before the new season of "Desperate Housewives" starts.
*  Like the O.J. trial...In fact, Saddam's lawyer is working on getting the O.J. jury.
*  A fair trial in Iraq!  Who says there's nothing original on TV anymore?

For all the worry over adolescents brought up on graphic song lyrics and violent video games, a new Time magazine survey found that American 13-year-olds are surprisingly conservative.  90 percent say their relationship with their parents is good or excellent, while only
seven percent think their parents are too strict.  63 percent say their religion is important to them.  60 percent are opposed to sex before
marriage; and 63 percent think that at 13, they are still too young to date.

* They just want to hook up with their friends and have oral sex.
*  Most will change their minds about sex before marriage sometime around prom night.
*  Video games turned them into conservatives: they now think car thieves should be shot on sight.
*  10 percent say they can't get along with their parents because they're "damn liberals!"

The latest crusade by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is to get people to boycott TV shows and movies that features chimps and other apes dressed in costumes.  PETA says chimps and other great apes should be left in the wild, adding, "Most people do not
know that the chimpanzee 'grin' so often seen in movies and on TV is actually a grimace of fear or a carefully choreographed response to a

*  Most people do not know that chimps are actually smarter than PETA members.
*  This sounds like Tom Cruise talking about the history of psychiatry.
*  You mean they're TRAINED to smile?!  I thought they were just amused by the sight of a chimp in a tutu!
*  Also, contrary to popular belief, Chihuahuas HATE wearing little pink designer outfits.

Bild reports that a German company is preparing for next year's World Cup championships in Berlin by building a 60-room mega-brothel
within walking distance of the stadium.  The Artemis complex will offer a sauna, whirlpool, movie theater, buffet restaurant and 100 prostitutes.  A spokesman for the investment company claimed it would be a classy, legitimate resort, saying, "This is no flash rip-off joint where clients are taken for a ride."

*  Well, except the ride they WANT to take...They like to call it "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride."
*  They're so classy, they hired a former Bowery Boy for a spokesman.
*  60 rooms and 100 prostitutes?  Germans must really be into threesomes...That's like having frankfurters in packages of 10 and buns in
packages of eight.
*  They're putting together a travel package with Virgin Airlines.
*  A movie theater?  Everyone will be too busy watching that penguin movie to have sex.
*  After a day of soccer, men can go where nobody tries to slap them away from the goal.


Can't Buy Me Love - A study by the British financial services company Mint found that people's spending is more affected by personal relationships than need.  In the 1960s, people spent on necessities; and in the 1980s, people wanted the most impressive consumer items.  But now, spending habits are more influenced by the state of people's personal relationships and emotional happiness.  The study found that at parties, people talk about vacations they've taken and what they've seen and read rather than the expensive car they drive; and spending is up on dating services, cell phones, the Internet and divorce lawyer fees.

*  Of course, divorce lawyers all talk about the expensive cars they drive.
*  They're paying for dating services and divorce lawyers at the same time...Sounds like the divorce is a necessity.
*  They can't talk about their expensive car: they had to sell it to pay alimony.
 *  If you think this is the first time people's spending has been determined by their relationships, you need to spend money on a psychiatrist.

Police in Stamford, Connecticut, report that Daniel Garcia, 21, had to visit the courthouse, so to avoid being caught in the search, he stashed $1,500 worth of marijuana under a rock, near the police station.  When he returned, the pot was gone.  Instead, he found a note reading, "You're under arrest.  Look up at the police station."  His father claims the cops must've planted the drugs on him.  He said, "I know my son has done some bad things, but I did not train him to be this dumb."

*  Must be genetic.
*  If he's not that dumb naturally, I wonder what could've caused it?  Hmmmmmmmmm...
*  Daniel suspects that the Tooth Fairy ripped off his weed.

In Morgantown, Ohio, Terry Hunt and Justin Hawkins were charged with arson and insurance fraud, but it got worse: they drove
to court in a stolen BMW.  Police then searched their residence and found two stolen Lexus SUVs in their garage.  The jury in the first trial
convicted them and recommended 20 years, then they were immediately charged with car theft.

*  Don't they get ANY points for trying so hard to get to court on time?
*  Something tells me if the cops keep searching, they'll also turn up some pot.

Brazil's O Dia newspaper reports that a toothless man was arrested in Ribeirao Preto after supermarket security cameras caught him stealing seven toothbrushes.  He tried to get away by showing his toothless mouth to the cops, but finally confessed, saying, "I don't
know why I did it.  I know it is a stupid thing to do, I have no teeth, what was I thinking?"

*  At least, they THINK that's what he said...
*  He was thinking, "Why didn't I steal these 20 years ago?"
*  He stole some condoms, too...The cops were afraid to look.

The FemaleFirst website reports that Christina Aguilera has adopted a weird new diet.  She is eating meals balanced between four food groups: hot, cold, soft and crunchy.  The plate also must include foods in bold, contrasting colors.  She reportedly travels with a chef who can whip up meals to fit the formula.

*  He makes them out of Play-Doh.
*  It's true: her chef is good with a whip.
*  When you think about it, aren't MOST foods either hot or cold, soft or crunchy?
*  It beats her last diet: nothing but vegetables that can double as sex toys.

Movie Reviews


Here are the latest movie reviews available at scoopy.com.


  • The yellow asterisks indicate that I wrote the review, and am deluded into thinking it includes humor.
  • If there is a white asterisk, it means that there isn't any significant humor, but I inexplicably determined there might be something else of interest.
  • A blue asterisk indicates the review is written by Tuna (or Junior or Brainscan, or somebody else besides me)
  • If there is no asterisk, I wrote it, but am too ashamed to admit it.


Other Crap

Very silly pages and covers from real comic books. Check out #3, in which the Joker says "Laugh at my boner, will they?"

The trailer for Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance

  • "As the film opens, a radio announcer reads a foreboding message sent in by the deaf mute Ryu, an intense young man who has a dead end job in a smelting factory. Ryu idolizes his sister who is in urgent need of a kidney transplant. When he is fired from his job and is tricked out of his savings by organ traffickers, his trashy loud-mouthed girlfriend Yeong-mi suggests kidnapping his boss's daughter Yu-sun for ransom to pay for his sister's transplant. What starts as a desperate attempt to help his sister leads to a high stakes game of revenge between Ryu and his former boss Park Dong-jin (played by Song Kang-ho of Mr. Park's JSA and The Foul King) that soon escalates into a modern day Greek tragedy."

Here is the international trailer for Rent

  • "Based on Puccini's classic opera La Boheme, Jonathan Larson's revolutionary rock opera 'Rent' tells the story of a group of Bohemians struggling to live and pay their rent in the gritty background of New York's East Village. 'Measuring their lives in love,' these starving artists strive for success and acceptance while enduring the obstacles of poverty, ilness and the AIDS epidemic. One of the longest running shows on Broadway, 'Rent' was the winner of the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the Obie Award, the New York Drama Critics Circle Award, four Tony Awards and three Drama Desk awards."

Four clips, the trailer, and a featurette for The Great Raid.

  • "Set in the Philippines in 1945, "The Great Raid" tells the true story of the men of the 6th Ranger Battalion, under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Henry Mucci (Bratt), who undertake a daring rescue mission against all odds. Traveling thirty miles behind enemy lines, the 6th Ranger Battalion aims to liberate over 500 American prisoners-of-war from the notorious Cabanatuan Japanese POW camp resulting in the most audacious rescue ever."

USING RECESS, BUSH NAMES HIS DOG TO THE SUPREME COURT ... "Caught You Napping", President Tells Congress

Chuck Norris is donning his cowboy boots once more, reprising his role as 'Walker, Texas Ranger' for CBS.

The Daily Show: "Rumsfeld crafts a new, sarcastic message to the men crafting the new Iraqi government."

Maggie Gyllenhall tells Jon Stewart all the secrets of kissing Tom Arnold

The Daily Show unveils God Machine 2.0

The Daily Show's Rob Corddry profiles a Shinnecock claim that could drive the proud and simple South Hamptonite into the sea.

Totalitarian Art

  • The submitter wrote: I knew about Hitler's plans to rebuild Berlin. What I didn't know was that Stallin had plans for Moscow that dwarfed Hitler's Berlin. In particular the Palace of the Soviets was designed to be quite a bit larger than the Empire State Building. Stallin did get as far as demolishing the Cathedral of Christ the Savior to make room for it. Here I quote. "The total height of the building was planned at 415 meters (1365 feet), taller than the Empire State Building, the tallest building at that time. The Palace would have housed several museums, the main and secondary auditoriums, with lower and underground levels given to the traffic handling, storage, and technical equipment. The building was supposed to give an impression of an enormous ladder to the sky. The utilitarian purpose of the building was to house Congresses of Soviets, likely the World Congress of Soviets."

The Toilet Online - Leave It To Bush!, episode 3.


Brittany and The Mickster sign up for the Sin City sequel

A gallery of stills from Deuce Bigelow. It has been such a weak summer at the movies that this film is starting to look good to me.

Giant New Zealand 'Bra Fence' Sparks Controversy. "Official Says Fence Offends Asian Cultures, South Africans "

Yet another brilliant BBC headline: Taste test for underwater cheese

  • This is really from BBC, but it is obviously written with tongue deep in cheek.
  • "Cheese-maker Luc Boivin threw cheese in the Baie des Ha! Ha! late last year, believing it would improve the taste. However, food hygiene inspectors say Mr Boivin cannot sell his cheese without rigorous health testing. And before it can be sold, it must be found, and divers have so far failed."
  • By the way, there really is a "Baie des Ha ! Ha !" in Quebec.

The Ultimate Guide to Weight Training for Badminton. For once I believe the blurb: "The Ultimate Guide to Weight Training for Badminton is the most comprehensive and up-to-date badminton-specific training guide in the world today." I had no idea that badminton players trained so hard. I figured they just took steroids like other athletes.

Another great BBC headline: Roman ruler's head found in sewer

The most foul-mouthed movie ever

  • I don't know if you noticed it on last weekend's Box Office Mojo, but The Aristocrats placed #24 despite being on only four screens. It took in an uncanny and astronomical $60,000 per screen. (Perspective is provided by the fact that the box office champ, The Wedding Crashers, was the second best performer in this category, with $6,600 per screen!)

Bush names Wyatt Earp to UN while Congress in recess

You won't get far in the 21st Century if you don't learn to think outside the box. Test your powers of lateral thinking with these classic questions.

Rafael Palmeiro suspended for steroids. "Palmeiro -- the highest-profile player to fail a test -- said he never intentionally took steroids and could not explain how the drugs got into his body."

The trailer for Three Dancing Slaves

  • "The newest film from French director-writer-actor Gael Morel ('Full Speed,' 'Wild Reeds'), 'Three Dancing Slaves' is an emotionally rich story about three brothers who are each facing a crucial turning point in their lives. As each young brother wrestles with their transition to manhood, they must escape the tyrannical rule of their distant father in order to find their own path for success in their lives. A tragic incident however, sparks a course of events that will test each sibling's sense of self-worth and open up questions about their blossoming desires that could affect their already fragile identities. Stunning cinematography, superb production values and high caliber performances makes 'Three Dancing Slaves' a thoughtful film about relationships, where each character questions their commitments to family and struggles to make their personal imprint in the world around them."

Funny Videos - The Origin of Ctrl Alt Del

Check out the ad for the DVD of Miss Castaway and the Island Girls. This movie has the greatest cast ever: Michael Jackson, Bob Denver, Anna Nicole Smith, Mr. Myagi, Jerry Lewis, and some ex-Playmates. (Sorry, it is rated PG.) Not to mention Doc from the Love Boat and the Incredible Hulk.

Sienna Miller has landed roles in two major Hollywood films thanks to her profile being raised after fiance Jude Law admitted to an affair with his children's nanny. (Although it sounds silly, this is basically how Elizabeth Hurley became A-list famous.)

J-Lo pregnant?


Marijuana use is cropping up on some critically acclaimed shows, and anti-drug forces fear the glamorization of pot could boost its use among youths.

Dave Chappelle's ad for "Samuel Jackson Beer"

50 People Who Need a Vicious Beating

Warner Brothers Fall 2005 Preview

That is one big motherfuckin' catfish . 7'7", 221 pounds. Hey, that ain't a catfish. Some guys caught Sean Bradley.

Buffalo renounces Satan. Batavia will pick up all the cancelled orgies.


Other Crap archives. May also include newer material than the links above, since it's sorta in real time.

Click here to submit a URL for Other Crap


Currently on disability. If you'd like to get in touch with him, his email address is tuna@scoopy.com

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