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Just in time for Halloween, read the exclusive interview with the King of New Old Good Bad Movies himself, Christopher R. Mihm, in this month’s “Screem” magazine.

http://screemag.com/index.php

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Universal’s stable of beloved monsters grace the cover of our 25th edition of Screem, courtesy of artist Mark Maddox. Greg Mank takes a look at the Classic Monster Blu-ray box set, and gives his perspective on the films that have inspired so many fans throughout several decades. Tom Weaver interviews Roger Corman on his first production, Monster from the Ocean Floor, Bev Vincent writes about Stephen King’s creepy anthology films and interviews Mark Pavia on his collaboration with Mr. King, The Reaper’s Image, Tippi Hedren reminiscences on the the 50th anniversary of Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds, Scott Essman reflects back on Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein, Screem speaks with indie director Christopher R. Mihm, who creates new movies that look like they were produced in the 1950s, we take a sneak peek at the retro Sci-fi musical The Ghastly Love of Johnny X, which features Paul Williams and Kevin McCarthy in his final role, Michael “The Hills Have Eyes” Berryman is as creepy as ever in the new film Below Zero. All this plus book reviews, a new Fright Flick Pic and Blu-ray reviews featuring Criterion’s Rosemary’s Baby, Beyond the Black Rainbow, The Boogens, House and Night of Dark Shadows (reviewed by RJ Jamison), 1932’s The Most Dangerous Game, William Castle’s short lived TV series Ghost Story (AKA Circle of Fear), BFI’s Deep End and Juan of the Dead plus plenty more goodies await you in the brand new issue of Screem magazine!
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Christopher R. Mihm’s “Attack of the Moon Zombies” Wins Numerous B-Movie Awards

“Attack of the Moon Zombies,” a B&W 1950s-drive-in-style creature feature film by writer/director Christopher R. Mihm, took a record six Dead Letter Awards in this year’s competition.
 
Attack of the Moon Zombies by Christopher R. Mihm
Attack of the Moon Zombies by Christopher R. Mihm

PRLog (Press Release)Mar 23, 2012
Minnesotan writer/director Christopher R. Mihm has a unique filmmaking niche. He makes only B&W, 1950s-drive-in-style creature features, or as he puts it, “I make good bad, new old movies.” Released in May 2011, his sixth film, “Attack of the Moon Zombies,” received universally positive reviews from those who want their nostalgia to be newly made. Recently, cult-movie site MailOrderZombie.com nominated “Attack of the Moon Zombies” for many of their annual Dead Letter Awards for quality filmmaking in the zombie genre.

The awards Mihm’s film won are: 1) Best Zombie Movie, feature length; 2) Best Director of a Zombie Movie (Christopher R. Mihm); 3) Best Zombie (Michael Kaiser); 4) Best Actress in a Zombie Movie Sid Korpi as Administrator Ripley; and 5) Best One-Liner in a Zombie Movie: “I know I’d rather die in agonizing pain than become some weird meat puppet for those nasty little things out there, wouldn’t you?” Plus, the movie won Best Death Scene via a write-in-only ballot, naming Mike Cook’s self-sacrificing demise as Dr. Vincent Edwards the best of the deaths. The film took home more awards than any other in the competition. Winners were established by popular vote.

Fans of this monstrously memorable, family-friendly, super-cheesy flick are urged to visit the Mail Order Zombie site to listen to the highly entertaining 3/22/12 podcast  #177 at http://www.mailorderzombie.com.

Also up to popular vote to decide is the 10th Annual Rondo Hatton Classic Horror Awards, for which “Attack of the Moon Zombies” has been nominated as Best Independent Film (Category 8). Please visit http://www.rondoaward.com/rondo/rondos.html to vote for this fine ’50s movie and support independent cinema by March 31, 2012.

If you haven’t yet seen “Attack of the Moon Zombies” and want to check it out to see what all the hubbub is about, order your copy from http://www.sainteuphoria.com today! While you’re on the site, why not purchase your tickets for the May 23, 2012 Heights Theatre premiere of Mihm’s seventh film, “House of Ghosts”? This show, a spooky homage to the 1950s-fright-film director William Castle (“The Tingler” and “House on Haunted Hill”) is selling out fast—fewer than 50 tickets remain—so act soon.

Jan 29 2012

I’m back with Christopher Mihm, talking about his upcoming film, Domo de Fantomoj [House of Ghosts], which will be subbed and dubbed into Esperanto! You might remember him better from his previous film, Attack of the Moon Zombies

Going back to Moon Zombies, how did its release in Esperanto make it different than your previous movies?

Having the film available in Esperanto allowed it to screen in many new places all over the world — places none of my previous films have played like Brazil, Poland, and Denmark. Being able to have my films seen internationally is a huge step forward and I credit Esperanto with that specifically!

Why do you believe that Esperanto speakers are interested in your films?

I think, if nothing else, there are so few Esperanto language films out there that almost any that are worth watching (as I believe mine most certainly are) are worth seeing. My films are family friendly — meaning “safe for kids” but not made specifically for them. If an Esperanto speaker wants to introduce his children to the language, my films might be a way to do it. My films are just plain fun and can make for a fun night of entertainment for groups of speakers who are learning (they make great teaching tools) or are fluent and want to enjoy a little bit of goofiness! Lastly, one of my goals is to indirectly erase the “bad taste” the 1960s William Shatner Esperanto movie “Incubus” left in the collective mouths of the Esperanto community. That film is so infamous for butchering the language that I want my films to be considered the film that “Incubus” should have been! So, I think that may be happening a bit.

Why did you choose to dub and sub another film for us?

The Esperanto community has been so kind and supportive that it honestly seemed wrong in some way not to do a House of Ghosts audio and subtitle track! Plus, working with the language for Attack of the Moon Zombies has made me quite interested in it generally. I figured doing it again will help further my understanding of the language.

Your further understanding of the language… does that mean you’ve actually started learning Esperanto? If so, what inspired you and how is that going?

It is true. After dealing directly with creating the spoken audio track for the last film, I realized I was starting to pick up the language a bit — it really is that easy to learn! All my life I’ve really struggled learning other languages — something I’ve always wanted to do. Being exposed to a language as easy to understand as Esperanto gives me hope I can overcome that difficulty. Sadly, my studies are coming along far slower than I would like which can be attributed specifically to the amount of time I spend working my day job, creating the films and maintaining the “Mihmiverse,” and raising my family!

What impressions do you have of the Esperanto community?

The Esperanto community has been wonderful. They’re great people who have been extremely supportive and friendly, both in how they’ve received my film but also in helping me to learn the language. I couldn’t ask for a nicer group of people!

What role do you think Esperanto would ideally play in the world?

The thing I find most amazing is how the original stated purpose of the language seems to actually be happening within the community. The language really does seem to bring people together. The Esperanto spoken tracks on my films are a great example of this. You have people from all over the world adding their voice to the film, and their only common attribute is that they speak Esperanto. That, to me, is the role Esperanto should play in the world: bringing people together!

Lastly, how can the Esperanto community support your new film?

The biggest thing the Esperanto community can do is to spread the word. Set up screenings and events or even gather your group of Esperanto-speaking friends and give the films a try! If nothing else, they’re entertaining, fun, and safe for the whole family!

I’d like to ask my readers to be sure to check out your Kickstarter Esperanto campaign. I wish you the best producing this film!

My friend Doug Finegood, a fellow Flintstones aficionado, sent me this link with a cartoon version of Weird Al Yankovic. It melds perfectly my love of all things Bedrockian with the reality of filming our Christopher R. Mihm B-movies! Check it out.—Sid

A neat ghostly event happened last night, as we finished our “House of Ghosts” shoot. (That’s the B&W 150s-style B-movie by Christopher R. Mihm we’ve been filming at our house.) At 7:35 p.m., during the shoot, TWO of our pendulum clocks just stopped. The big grandfather clock in the living room was one of them, and that has NEVER just stopped before. Since it was that one and Anthony’s deceased mother’s clock in the parlor, and since she’s known for doing that occasionally to let us know she’s around, we’re guessing it was she who was saying she was watching the final scene with her kid. A nice send-off, don’t you agree? 🙂

Remember to get in your RSVPs for our Open House of Ghosts. You can meet these mystical, magical clocks in person!

Friends of the Mihmiverse,

you are cordially invited to attend the

Open House of Ghosts

Whether you’ve been on screen, behind the scenes, or in the audience at a Mihm movie, please join us on-site for an open house party on Friday, Dec. 30, 2011, from 5–9 p.m. at the historic South Minneapolis Victorian home where Christopher R. Mihm’s latest major motion picture, “House of Ghosts,” was filmed.

What’s in it for you?

• Meet and greet the director himself, as well as cast members from this and many of his earlier movies at this unprecedented Mihmiverse mini-reunion.

• “Audition” for a walk-on role in an upcoming movie by re-enacting a scene from one of his movies with the actors present or take the Improbable-Dialogue Memorization Challenge.

• Shop for Mihmorabilia—and get it all autographed.

• Pre-order your “House of Ghosts” DVDs and/or reserve your collectible tickets for its May 23, 2012, premiere event at the Heights Theatre.

• Bring along friends or family members who’d like to check out the perks of becoming an associate producer.

• Hors d’oeuvres, soft drinks and desserts will be served.

Please RSVP to rsvp@sainteuphoria.com by Dec. 20 to get the address and directions to the house. For more information, contact Christopher R. Mihm at chris@sainteuphoria.com or Sid Korpi at sid@tworightfeetdance.com.

Arden Hills auteur specializes in 1950s-style B-movie horror films (w/ video)

Updated: 11/13/2011 11:24:47 PM CST

View video

Video from the St. Paul Pioneer Press | TwinCities.com.

Filmmaker Chris Mihm jokes with the actors and crew during a short break last week in the filming of House of Ghosts, his seventh movie. (Pioneer Press: Chris Polydoroff)

The corpse is having a rough night.

She’s cold, after lying on the floor for two hours. One of the mink’s legs in her fur stole is missing, and she thinks the dog might have eaten it.

Her face is supposed to be locked in a death-mask of terror – eyes bulging out, mouth wide open – every time the film director reshoots the scene.

One time, she forgets.

“Cut!” shouts Christopher Mihm of Arden Hills, Minnesota’s leading auteur of 1950s-style horror movies. “You didn’t do the face!”

“You didn’t tell me to do the face!” squawks the corpse, aka Stephanie Mihm, his wife.

To start the next shot, the director doesn’t yell “Action!” Instead – so his wife won’t miss it – he yells, “Face!”

Last Tuesday, in a small room in a Minneapolis home, Christopher Mihm worked for hours perfecting a 30-second shot in his upcoming movie, “House of Ghosts.”

Mihm shoots tributes to cornball horror movies such as “Plan Nine from Outer Space,” “The Brain That Wouldn’t Die,” and “Attack of the 50-foot Woman” – regarded by critics as some of the worst movies ever made.

Mihm is aiming higher – at least, slightly higher. He writes, directs and produces movies that strive for the sweet spot between so-bad-it’s-good and just plain bad.

They get spotty exposure. His movies have played in theaters in Lakeville and Forest Lake, and “House of Ghosts” will premiere in May in Columbia Heights.

All six films have been shown on Australian TV. One was translated into Esperanto


—yes, Esperanto—for a convention in Copenhagen this year.

In this genre, penny-pinching is part of the mystique.

His seven movies have cost about $4,000 each. He shot one, “Terror from Beneath the Earth,” entirely in his basement. He doesn’t pay his actors.

He shoots in black-and-white, so he can substitute chocolate syrup for blood.

The results aren’t exactly Steven Spielberg.

“These movies are so cheesy you can’t watch if you are lactose-intolerant,” said one of his actresses, Sid Korpi.

But the joy of the work binds the actors and director together, as the filming session Tuesday showed.

“This movie is about a dinner party of rich weirdos,” explained Mihm, as his cast crammed into a room the size of a king-sized bed.

In the scene, a woman’s body is found after she was frightened to death by a ghost.

To get ready, Stephanie Mihm, aka the corpse, lies on a rug. She is a star of the corpse-acting world – she lay on a concrete floor for about 40 hours during the shooting of “Terror From Beneath the Earth.”

To prepare, she tucked a pillow under her knees.

“How convenient that when someone is scared to death, they land on a cushion,” said actress Korpi.

The director shot the scene of guests discovering the corpse, then did it again. And again.

When one actor’s neck-scarf kept slipping, actor Justen Overlander said, “It gets to be a pain in the ascot.”

During one take, two terriers wandered in and sniffed the corpse. “Go away, dogs!” Mihm said from behind his camera.

The corpse’s facial muscles were getting tired. The director complained that the death-face wasn’t scary enough. “I want you to be terrified – truly terrified,” he said.

“I’m trying,” sighed the corpse.

“Eyes open but sightless,” coached Korpi.

By the eighth time, the actors felt comfortable with their lines and breezed through a take.

“Cut! That was OK-ish,” said Mihm.

He then stood over the corpse, aiming the camera down at the face.

“This is Stephanie’s beauty shot,” said lighting designer Cherie “Rhuby” Gallinati.

A voice floated up from the corpse: “Use the soft focus,” in which something is rubbed onto a camera lens to blur the image.

Gallinati contributed this comment: “I smeared some nose juice on the camera.”

The corpse erupted in laughter, spitting and coughing into the floodlights. “Oh…Oh…I am dying,” she laughed, gasping for air.

“You are already dead,” snapped Mihm.

Sitting up, she noticed that one mink’s leg was missing from her fur stole. She glared at the dog. During filming a few weeks before, a dog was caught munching the mink.

“Anyone see any more mink body parts around here?” she said, as she lay back down.

Mary, played by actress Catherine Hansen, left, stands in a doorway shocked to see Ursula, played by Stephanie Mihm, lying unresponsive on the floor frightened to death, we later learn, by a ghost during the filming of House of Ghosts. (Pioneer Press: Chris Polydoroff)

Overlander, the muscleman of the group, had to kneel down, pick her up and put her on a sofa.As the camera rolled, he lugged the corpse, bonking her head against a lamp. He tried it again. But the face wasn’t right. Again – this time dropping her, snapping her neck.

“Sorry! Sorry!” he blurted. The corpse giggled.

“Cut!” said Mihm.

Behind the lights, the prognosticators discussed how stiff the corpse should be. Rigid? Easier to lift. Limp? More realistic.

“Fold her like an accordion!” said Korpi.

Just when everyone’s patience – and Overland’s back – were almost exhausted, he swept down, scooped up the corpse and gently laid it down. The corpse’s eyes were glassy, the mouth open in a horrible yawn.

An awed hush filled the room. It was perfect.

“Cut!” said Mihm. “That’s it. There are only so many shots I can get of someone sitting there dead.”

As they were cleaning up, the missing mink leg appeared. It was centered on a velvet pillow in one corner of the room, as if someone were presenting it to a king.

Mihm and the corpse looked around, uneasily. It was almost…spooky.

Bob Shaw can be reached at 651-228-5433. Follow him on twitter.com/BshawPP

TO SEE MORE

For trailers and information about Christopher Mihm’s movies, go to sainteuphoria.com. The movie “House of Ghosts” is expected to premier at the Heights Theater in Columbia Heights at 7:30 p.m. May 23, 2012.

Filmmaker Chris Mihm films his wife, Stephanie, who gets a chance to show off her considerable corpse acting skills in the role of Ursula, in House of Ghosts, which is in production. (Pioneer Press : Chris Polydoroff)

Western Wisconsin Premiere of “Attack of the Moon Zombies

Produced and directed by Christopher R. Mihm, the film is a delightful, family-friendly tribute to the B-grade, black-and-white horror and sci-fi films of the 1950s. Doors at 7 p.m. Popcorn, pop and other concessions will be on sale, and after the film, you can buy some cool Mihmiverse swag, and hob-nob with writer/director Christopher R. Mihm and a cast member or two. You might even meet one of the zombies, so bring your camera. $7 adults, $5 kids 12 and under • chris@sainteuphoria.com

Time 7:30–9:30 p.m. Sun. Sep. 25

Location The Grand Little Theatre

102 West Grand Avenue Eau Claire, WI

(715) 832-7529 cvtg.org

You know me as an author, animal chaplain and B-movie actress. But did you also know I pony, jerk, frug, swing, and even foxtrot like a dancin’ fool? I think it’s important to be well rounded. Check out my Two Right Feet Dance site. I just added a bunch of photos from the making of and premiere of “Attack of the Moon Zombies” in the Photo Gallery, along with info and reviews on the B-Movie Mania link. Like Two Right Feet on Facebook, too. And if you’re in the Twin Cities area, an absolute beginner to social dance, and looking for affordable, low-threat, private lessons, contact us today! We’ll get you ready for that reunion, wedding, or big date night out. Remember our Two Right Feet motto: “Forget Fred and Ginger—We’ll have you dancing like Fred and Wilma in no time!”

Teaching '60s freestyle dance at a 60th birthday party.

I can’t get enough of these awesome interviews/reviews of “Attack of the Moon Zombies” by Christopher R. Mihm (in which I play Administrator Ripley). This one gives a little teaser about next year’s movie, too. For some reason, it wouldn’t let me paste the pages here, so just click on the link below the picture.—Sid

‘Attack of the Moon Zombies’: monstrous mutant mayhem in the magic of Esperanto!

 

 

 

“Attack of the Moon Zombies” (2011) By Jason Coffman In 2006, Wisconsin-based filmmaker Christopher R. Mihm released his first feature film “The Monster of Phantom Lake.” A loving tribute to the 1950s creature features Mihm grew up watching with his father, Mihm’s first film established the blueprint for his subsequent oeuvre: low-budget black & white features shot on the cheap that aim not to ironically appropriate the look and feel of 1950s genre cinema, but to actually replicate that look and feel as an end in itself. Each of Mihm’s films— with titles such as “Cave Women on Mars” and “Terror from Beneath the Earth”— build on and add to an overarching mythology and world that has been earning his work a cult following of like-minded fans who grew up on and love the same b-movies that inspired him. Mihm’s latest film, “Attack of the Moon Zombies,” is no exception and may also be his most technically accomplished film yet. In the not-too-distant future on the Jackson Lunar Base, Dr. Vincent Edwards (Mike Cook) is on the eve of retirement. While training his young replacement, Glen Hayes (Michael Kaiser), the two men find a long-dormant plant hidden in a cave on the lunar surface. They return it to the laboratory of the Base Botanist Dr. Hackett (Shannon McDonough) and report the find to Base Administrator Ripley (Sid Korpi). Once removed from the lunar surface and its deadly radiation, the plant springs to life and the scientists learn the hard way that the plant’s spores cause paralysis and death in short order, followed by reanimation as a plant-like zombie! Soon the Moon Zombies have overrun the Base, constantly thwarting Dr. Collins’ (Douglas Sidney) attempts to propose to Dr. Hackett and resulting in the shutdown of radiation shields over two-thirds of the base. A small group of survivors must figure out a way to reach the shield controls and wipe out the Moon Zombies in time for the next supply ship to arrive and take them home. Too bad the base is absolutely crawling with monsters and time is running out— can our heroes save themselves and end the Moon Zombie threat? Shot in “era-appropriate black & white” on digital video, “Attack of the Moon Zombies” looks a bit sharper than Mihm’s other films, but that may be because it’s almost entirely shot on sterile interior sets. The Lunar Base is all white walls, plastic lawn chairs and automatic sliding doors, probably making lighting a bit easier and more consistent than in the outdoor locations that make up much of Mihm’s previous films. The cast is mostly made up of alumni from Mihm’s previous films (and includes his wife Stephanie), and the lo-fi sets, costumes and monster make-up all add to the film’s considerable charm. The Moon Zombies themselves are perfectly realized, looking exactly as cheap as they should (they appear to be masks and gloves) without being too goofy to generate some genuine tension. Mihm absolutely nails the tone and dialogue of his 50’s inspirations, and the game cast does a great job across the board. Aside from the crisp DV picture, the only tip-offs that the film isn’t from the same decade as “It Conquered the World” are the sly pop culture references (be sure to note all the characters’ names!) and the use of some simple CG animation early in the film instead of cardboard-tube space ships and Christmas-light stars. While “Attack of the Moon Zombies” may be most fun for “Mihmiverse” converts— it really does pay to watch all the films and pay careful attention— any fan of classic sci-fi and horror films will find a lot to like, and this is a great introduction to Mihm’s work. Learn more about “Attack of the Moon Zombies” and Christopher R. Mihm’s other films at his official website: www.sainteuphoria.com.

Jason Coffman is a film writer living in Chicago. He writes reviews for Film Monthly and “The Crown International Files” for Criticplanet.org as well as contributing to Fine Print Magazine (www.fineprintmag.net).

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