Thursday, February 28, 2013

Alabama's Ghost

Alabama's Ghost Directed By Fredric Hobbs (1973). Starring Christopher Brooks.
  As someone who lives in Oakland I think I know alittle more about what strange transformations occur when you cross over the bridge to San Francisco, this might be the reason why people are baffled by Alabama's Ghost and also the reason people bitch about crossing the bridge!
  Christopher Brooks played Black Jesus in The Mack (which was filmed in Oakland), but when he ventured over the bridge (to Frisco) he turned into Alabama "King Of The Cosmos", all of this will be revealed or just blamed on heavy drug use in our feature tonight.
  It starts off with a newscast from the archives of the mysterious Dr. Caligula, Hitler's expert in robot technology. You might think your ears are deceiving you as you listen about Carter the Great and a potent form of wacky tobac-ee (or an intense form of hasheesh or cartoon cackee)! Has this movie lost its mind already, you can never tell! but what can you expect from the Fredric Hobbs, the man who previously directed The Godmonster Of The Indian Flats?
  Turk Murphy a dixieland jazz band in an old people dive bar called Earthquake Mcgoons (a real place in SF). It was closed when Turk died in 1987, they also named a street after him in the Tenderloin. Hopefully the band might clear up some things about this movie.They sing the title song as the credits roll by (has the film ended already? was it an acid flashback, what is going on)? Turk hops off stage and wakes up Alabama from his cat nap on the bar then he hops onto a forklift and rams it into a wall.
Feed Me Seymour!
  He travels further into the pit of the club and hears a strange voice, it leads him toward a magic cabinet where he finds a pirate get up. The scary voice is only a record player.Whew, is everything gonna return to normal?
    Alabama decides to cross a rickety bridge (it's suddenly daylight) and confront a creepy man dressed in a granny outfit (with vampire fangs) who is guarding Carter's magicians trunk. They both smoke the cartoon hash which inspires Alabama to proclaim himself "King Of The Cosmos".
Eugene Levy Untamed!
He uses Carter's spirit cabinet to resurrect the dead and surrounds himself with a hippy entourage. He gets increasingly more psychedelic (what's more 70's then an acid soaked magician like Doug Henning)? He drives around in a giant wagon with a gargoyle face and paper mache demons hanging off the side. His hippy group plays monotonous flutes before a Monterey Pop style crowd (magic is apparently really popular among the stoned)! they sort of sound like Sly & The Family Stone too. 
  Then it all goes wrong during the saw trick and Alabama mentions that he's afraid of Carter's ghostly fish eye placing a curse on him!
  Even though he's spooked, this doesn't stop him from dabbling in the black arts! Then it gets worse as he is confronted by a wizard with an exposed bloody heart.

  Alabama went into a transformation chamber and his hippy girl friend seems to be dousing him with acid behind his back. Carter's ghost shows up while he's trying to get laid and Alabama accuses him of racism then an earsplitting vampire scream happens as gnarly fangs jug out of his girlfriends mouth! Good thing she didn't give him head!
Ouch! Careful with those teeth!

Alice Cooper/ Alabama Sex Scandal
He runs screaming to his mother and soon a voodoo witchdoctor has entered the picture!  As if this movie couldn't get anymore bat shit crazy! After the ritual which includes a lot of chanting, pounding and live snakes, he drives back in order to get primed for his television appearance. The vampire granny shows up again (without a costume) playing a wheelchair bound nosferatu named Jerry.   
  Alabama plans on making an elephant disappear, but Carter keeps showing up and bothering everyone! It turns out the beginning plot point wasn't thrown away (or maybe the scriptwriter just woke up) and Dr. Caligula is working with Jerry and his crew of vampires (some of them dress like witches). All this information is never tied together and everything is consistently bizarre, but never dull, it just doesn't really make sense. It all ends with a free Altamont style concert with a band called The Loading Zone?! and a clone of Alabama shooting vampires on motorcycles!! There's a little of everything in this strange movie to enjoy and its so warped and freaky that even if you can't believe how bad it is, its still a fun and a watchable psychedelic mind trip. 


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