Following the monumental success of The Street Fighter, the Toei Company (a Japanese film, television, and distribution corporation) decided to move forward in a shockingly progressive way by erecting a new karate series centered around a female lead. Toei opted to cast a young actress who was no stranger to The Street Fighter, her mentor, Sonny Chiba. Still in her teens at that time, Etsuko Shihomi burst on the scene in her first leading lady role. And thus, Sister Street Fighter was born. Creating a new type of character: a resilient fighter who was ferocious, valiant, and affable. Even more progressive, Toei decided to take a non-sexualized approach. Quite the antithetical retreat from their traditional formula.
In a galaxy 30 million parsecs from our solar system, no star is similar to the sun… Inhabitants of some planets in the galaxy survive due to radiation branched from the core of the globe. Others live in the coldest environments imaginable. To survive, they use “Kalamajids,” also known as a “sunlamp.” To maintain body heat, they are forced to do continuous physical activity. The activity being religious worship… They worship monarch, King Grigorio XXII.
The empire, galactic. The cult, fitness and beauty. In memory of personal trainer, Elfisio Masciago whom was electrocuted by a sunlamp ten years prior; monarch Grigorio orders tanning showers to be delivered to all places of assembly on every planet. But who will be tasked with this very important mission. A pirate ship called the Dolcezza Extrema. The ship is manned by a has-been rock star, an ex-con named Pixws, and a crew of recovering drug addicts. Once the ship and crew travel to the planet Nemesis, Pixws questions the soundness of his orders. A mutiny ensues. Will the Dolcezza Extrema make it home or will King Grigorio destroy them for their insolence?
From the mind of Massimo Vavassori and direction of Alberto Genovese comes Dolcezza Extrema. Dolcezza Extrema (original title: Sick Sock Monsters from Outerspace) is a bizarre epic set in every corner of the universe. Socks, Drugs, and Rock and Roll From Outerspace. Think Aliens. Think Danny Boyle’s Sunshine. Think Team America World Police. Combine all of those with some LSD and you have Dolcezza Extrema. Are you ready for it?
Amongst the many positives the movie exudes, production design and special effects were the standouts.
I briefly spoke with Alberto Genovese: What I was convinced were miniatures (the sets) being used to create the environment, turned out to be digital effects, said Genovese. He went on to say everything was digital but the socks! Which, once you see it, you will come to the same realization that I did: Alberto Genovese and Loboarts Productions are going to go on to bigger things in the realm of cinema. If they could produce the sights and sounds they did on Dolcezza Extrema, on a shoestring budget (quite possibly less than that), then I’m excited to see what they can do with more than a nominal budget. And they can’t do that without your streams and/or hard copy purchases.
While the film was released in 2015, it wasn’t until 2016 that Troma Entertainment acquired it for U.S. distribution. From their site you may choose to stream it or purchase the bluray. Your humble correspondent kindly suggests you get a hard copy.
Fans of horror need no introduction to this one. Fans of Takashi Mike need no introduction to this one. But for those of you in the dark…
Robert Rodriguez and James Cameron usher in a new sci-fi epic with Alita: Battle Angel. Expertly crafted. Superbly paced. Visuals so good, the audience is emerged into the environment immediately. Hopefully fans can put their love for Star Wars, Star Trek, etc. aside and make room for a new franchise that truly embodies the genre.
The first official podcast of EllissinemA opens with a movie called Deadsight, directed by Jesse Thomas Cook. Take a listen.
My Must-Sees of 2018
1) First Man
2) A Quiet Place
4) Mission Impossible: Fallout
5) A Star Is Born
6) Isle of Dogs
7) Game Night
8) The Night Comes For Us
9) Avengers: Infinity War
10) First Reformed
12) Black Panther
16) The Sisters Brothers
19) The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
20) You Were Never Really Here