(To be hurled into the face of the author on a later date)
A B-Note describes a B movie. If you already know what a B movie is, please skip to the next section, because the next two paragraphs are for people who are either newbies or mistakenly thought the name of this subweb meant this was going to be about music or business.
By pure definition, a B movie is a cheaply produced movie. The expression used to mean either a movie made by a major studio without the studio's full support or a movie made by an intentionally minor production company. The result was usually a "generic movie." Since then, the term has been broadened to include any movie that was cheaply made, especially if the low budget limited the production to noticeably shoddy material and poor craftsmanship.
This is not to imply that all B movies are, by their inexpensive nature, inferior imitations of superior products, but it does mean they are rarely taken seriously by an audience that is into conspicuous consumption.
Movies are selected for B-Notes after careful research. Many hours are spent in local trash bins, toxic waste dumps, and disco band reunions trying to find the right movies for this site. No, not really. I just hang out at the discussion boards at some of the better movie sites until I think of a worthy movie that hasn't already had a "special treatment" on another web page or as an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000.
B-Notes tend to be about weird movies. However, please note that this is not a horror site, anymore than it is a science fiction or musical site. I understand the horror and science fiction genres; therefore, I can speak with some authority on movies in those genres.
Besides, nothing spells "unintentional comedy" like a pretentious, inept filmmaker trying to scare or profound his audience.
B-Notes have a standard format. The
pages are kept as simple as possible. You can expect the following
in these reviews
Please use the format to your advantage. For example, if you've already seen the movie and are not interested in an allegedly humorous description of the plot, skip down to the Stuff sections.
Small Stuff is "B-Notes Lite." Named after what sailors call thin lines, these reviews are not as exhaustive as standard B-Notes. Many of them originally appeared in Nathan Shumate's B-Movie Mailing List and have been reproduced here as a matter of convenience. (Translation: The pretense of neatening them up and making them easier to find allows me to plagiarize myself.)
B-Notes are NOT Cliff Notes. However, they do share one important similarity. B-Notes are NOT a substitute for actually viewing the film.
If it's mocked in a B-Note, that doesn't mean it's crap. I mock a lot of movies, even the good ones. Want to try something different? Sit through something like Citizen Kane and let fly. Just don't do it in front of any movie fascists.
Ninety-nine percent of all things can be lampooned. You just have to put your objective mind to it. God knows I do. Therefore, I apologize in advance for offending anyone (that didn't have it coming).
And since this is now a proud annex of the Jabootu Dimension, please note that some of the movies covered were not spawned there. In fact, some of them are quite good in their own way. However, we will be savoring the parts of all movies where that demigod of dreck has been leaving his mark.
B-Notes do not rate the movies. It's common for movie reviewers to rate a movie on a scale from one (or zero) to n. I have nothing against that, but I feel it's a bit unscientific. Most movie reviewers tend to write for their own specific groups, and the ratings they give may be good for their intended group, but not everyone.
If one thinks of a rating as a statistical value, then a statistically correct movie rating should contain several variables. Was it entertaining? Entertaining for who? Rate the the entertainment value for 14 year old boys in New York City. Rate the entertainment value for 35 year old women living in Iowa. Include separate sets by ethnic groups and occupations. Do the same for the artistic value. Do the same for the social, philosophical, spiritual, and technical values. The result would not be a single integer; it would be a twenty dimension chart requiring a MS in Math to read the blasted thing. I don't need that kind of grief. Neither do you.
Besides, it's too easy to fall into a trap after assigning a few scores. Look at any reviewer that rates the movies, and after a while, you'll be asking, "Did he really think that movie was worse than this other movie? Was he nuts or just plain stupid?"
Most of the B-Notes contain photos. Although I publish screen grabs from the movies, I do not own the rights on these. That would belong to the copyright owners of the movies they're from. Please don't copy photos from this site, claim them as your own, make a few bucks on them, and then point a twisted finger at me when the Copyright Police show up your door.
The photos are included for two reasons only: personal entertainment and pseudo-academic purposes. If you feel this is still violating the copyright, then please throw a few bucks at the copyright owners by buying or renting these movies. They'll be glad you did.