New Year, New Schedule!

Happy New Year, Dear Readers! Cracked Rear Viewer will be posting every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday for 2018 (at least for the foreseeable future!). To start the year off, this week will feature a theme: three films that kicked off new genres (for better or worse!). Just to whet your appetite, I’m giving you the three original theatrical trailers to enjoy!!:

The Wild Angels (1966)

Willard (1971)

 

The Poseidon Adventure (1972)

See you Tuesday!

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Cracked Rear Viewer’s 2017 Year in Review

Once again, it’s time to step back and take a look at how far Cracked Rear Viewer has come, and where it’s going in 2018. When I started writing this blog in June of 2015, I didn’t know what I was getting into! It takes a lot of time and effort, and you Dear Readers have certainly rewarded me far beyond my expectations. As of this writing, 2017 has seen 24,456 visitors (doubling last year) view my musings a record 36,756 times. As Sally Field once said, “You like me! You really like me!”. I thank you, one and all.

I’ve tried out some new things this year, some successful, some not so much. The Cracked Rear Viewer Facebook page has given this blog a huge boost; if you haven’t subscribed, please do so! Book reviews on classic film subjects have proved popular, and I’ll continue those in the New Year, as well as my “Familiar Faces” posts. But its movies that are the cornerstone here, and without further ado, here are the Ten most popular posts of 2017:

1- A tie between two classic cowboys: Clint Eastwood in THE BEGUILED (originally published April 2016)  and John Wayne in THE SEARCHERS (Sept. 2017). The Clint post gained traction due to the recent Sofia Coppola remake, while The Duke reigns eternal in the hearts of film fans (including Yours Truly – expect more on Wayne as 2018 unfolds!)

2- THE VIOLENT YEARS (April 2017): I pulled out an old VHS copy of this Ed Wood-scripted movie when my DirecTV went down for a few days. The post took off like a comet, surprising and delighting me! This post is the one that got me thrown out of a certain Facebook page (no names, please) for this picture of the video’s hostess with the mostess, Mamie Van Doren:

Really? Really??

3- Top Ten Reasons CASABLANCA is The Greatest Movie Ever Made! (August 2015): Resurging interest in this post was due in large part to the film’s 75th anniversary. Like I’ve probably told you before (about a million times!), CASABLANCA will always be my favorite movie, and I did two other posts on it this year: a look at my experience viewing it on The Big Screen , and a review of Noah Isenberg’s book, WE’LL ALWAYS HAVE CASABLANCA .

4- Why I Think ERASERHEAD Sucks! (Nov. 2015) gained views because of David Lynch’s recent TWIN PEAKS: THE RETURN on Showtime. I like Lynch, but still think ERASERHEAD is overrated. To each his own.

5- John Ford’s FLESH (July 2017): An obscure Ford entry, part of my “Pre-Code Confidential” series, starring Wallace Beery as a German grappler. The post exceeded expectations when a Pro Wrestling site called F4WOnline picked it up. Thanks, Dave Meltzer and Bryan Alvarez!

6- Marilyn Chambers in David Cronenberg’s RABID (April 2017): I don’t know if it’s because of Cronenberg, porn icon Marilyn, or the fact it’s a great movie; all I know is RABID was one of this year’s most popular posts!

7- 1931’s THE MALTESE FALCON (May 2017): Another “Pre-Code Confidential” post, the original version of Dashiell Hammett’s pulp classic drew a lot of viewers. Most in the “Pre-Code” series do, so expect a lot more in 2018!

8- SEX IN THE CINEMA by Lou Sabini ( July 2017): My look at a book that covers over 100 Pre-Code films, written by film historian Lou Sabini, who also hosts a wonderful Facebook page titled MY “REEL” LIFE. Thanks for the autographed copy, Lou!

9- John Wayne in THE COWBOYS (Dec. 2017): Duke again, in one of his best 70’s Westerns. Like I said, John Wayne is eternal!

10- Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer (Nov. 2017): Number One in a new series spotlighting Pulp Fiction writers and their characters, featuring Spillane’s notorious gumshoe. I’m looking into more for 2018; stay tuned!!

As always, I thanks the crew at Through the Shattered Lens for letting me repost my ramblings on their fantastic site. And the biggest shout out of all goes to all you Dear Readers who make it worthwhile! Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some writing and editing to do… see you Next Year!!

Halloween Havoc! Is Over!

The third annual ‘Halloween Havoc!’ horror movie marathon has ended, and I’ve gotta thank you all for reading! Cracked Rear Viewer had its biggest month ever, with 4,417 views from 2,930 visitors – a smashing pumpkin success! Once again, thank all you Dear Readers for your undying support, and I’ll be back in a few days with more classic movie and retro pop culture reviews. Right now, I’m gonna crawl in my coffin and take a well deserved nap!

Peace,   Gary Loggins, your ‘Cracked Rear Viewer’

Cracked Rear Viewer’s 3rd Annual “Halloween Havoc!” Begins Sunday!

Get ready for fright nights as once again I do 31 horror films in 31 days! This is the third year I’ve taken on this terrifying task, and the madness starts on Sunday October 1st with old fiends, er friends, Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Boris Karloff, and Roger Corman! But the fearful fun doesn’t stop there! This year’s lineup includes ghouls and ghosts, maniacal murderers and sick psych-biddies, giant bugs and tiny terrors, warlocks and witches, supernatural and spaced-out zombies, and even a terrible tree monster!! There’ll also be some abominable extras every weekend. I hope you’ll join me for this month-long look at all cinematic things that go BOO in the night!

Two Years of Cracked Rear Viewer!

In the summer of 2015, I contacted a complete stranger on Facebook, Lisa Marie Bowman, to inquire about writing for the website THROUGH THE SHATTERED LENS . Lisa asked for a sample, then suggested I start a WordPress account. CRACKED REAR VIEWER made it’s debut on both sites on June 26, 2015 with a look at Peter Lorre’s THE FACE BEHIND THE MASK , and the rest is history! My blog has grown by leaps and bounds since then, covering films from the 1930’s to the 70’s (with a few sporadic new movies thrown in for good measure), and expanded it’s scope to include TV, music, books, and other features I’ve begun spotlighting every Friday morning.

For those of you who are stat geeks (and I include myself in that category), CRACKED REAR VIEWER has gained 994 loyal followers between WP, Twitter (which I joined in October 2015), and Facebook (January 2017). In fact, the Facebook page has proved very popular, with daily extras on stars and music. There have been 24,415 visitors to the blog, with 38,611 views of 525 posts. My most popular month is always October, when I present my annual “Halloween Havoc!” marathon, doing a horror film a day – and trust and believe I’m already working on it! It’s not easy, as I learned the hard way during that first year!

One thing that boggles my mind is the amount of countries interested in reading about mostly older American movies. Besides the good ol’ USA, CRACKED REAR VIEWER has large followings in Germany, the UK, France, Canada, Australia, Brazil, Spain, Italy, India, and Japan. There are still a few I haven’t reached yet, but I hope to soon. You hear that, Greenland, I’m coming for you!!

Now I’d like to share the CRV Top Ten Most Popular Posts of All Time! Drum roll, please:

Top Ten Reasons CASABLANCA is The Greatest Movie Ever Made!   (August 2015) – My all-time favorite movie is also coincidentally my all-time most popular post. This being the film’s 75th anniversary has boosted its views.

Victim of Love: Clint Eastwood in THE BEGUILED  (April 2016) – Renewed interest in this film due to the upcoming Sofia Coppola remake has helped spark interest in this, no doubt!

From the VHS Vault 2: THE VIOLENT YEARS  (April 2017) – My review of this Ed Wood scripted Juvenile Delinquent epic was not only a hit, but got me thrown out of a Facebook group for this picture of Mamie Van Doren:

Really, Turner Classic Movies Fan Site? Really??

A Star is Born in Monument Valley: John Wayne in John Ford’s STAGECOACH  (January 2016) – My life-long love affair with the films of The Duke and Pappy Ford has endured since childhood, and I’m not about to stop now. It seems you Dear Readers agree, placing it at #4 all-time.

Cleaning Out the DVR Pt 4: B-Movie Roundup!   (November 2015) – One of my most popular series here is these “Cleaning Out The DVR” anthologies, where I do capsule descriptions of 5 or 6 movies. Included in this entry are KING OF THE UNDERWORLD, GO WEST YOUNG LADY, BAYOU, TWELVE HOURS TO KILL, and WANDA. An eclectic mix, to be sure!

Why I Think ERASERHEAD Sucks!   (November 2015) – I don’t pan very many movies, but I’ve never been able to get into this one. Many of you agreed.

I Wish I Were A Fish: Don Knotts in THE INCREDIBLE MR. LIMPET   (February 2016) – This one surprised me, as I didn’t think there were a ton of Don Knotts fans out there. I was happily proved wrong!

Philip Marlowe, TV Detective   (January 2016)- An early attempt at something different, I did an overview of Raymond Chandler’s classic character’s television appearances. I’ve also reviewed four Marlowe movies, which can be found by following this link.

Have a Bucket of Fun!: THE KENTUCKY FRIED MOVIE   (August 2015) – Another surprise, as this zany early Zucker/Abrahams/Zucker comedy isn’t as well known as their later films (AIRPLANE!, THE NAKED GUN). It’s always been a favorite of mine, though. “Take him to Detroit!”

(Tie) Hidden Gem: Natalie Wood in PENELOPE   (August 2015) and My Living Doll: ATTACK OF THE PUPPET PEOPLE   (May 2016) – Natalie Wood in Arthur Hiller’s underrated 60’s screwball comedy ties for 10th place all-time with Mr. BIG’s (that’s Bert I. Gordon) 50’s sci-fi schlockfest. I love ’em both!

What does the future hold for CRACKED REAR VIEWER and Yours Truly? Well, I’ve got some projects in the works, including a special post later tonight. As always, I thank all you Dear Readers for your support and kind comments. This venture is a labor of love for me, and I hope younger readers will seek out and watch the fine films covered here, and that you older folks get a nostalgic kick out of reminiscing about films past. Again, I thank you for reading my musings, and hope you’ll continue to follow me on this journey through classic films and retro pop culture. Feel free to follow me on Twitter @gary_loggins and on the CRACKED REAR VIEWER Facebook Page. I’ll see you around 6:00 Eastern Time for a real treat!