Paper Bag Critic: Contractual Obligations

THE LAST VIDEO STORE ON EARTH. CINEMATICO MAGNIFICO ADDRESSES THE AUDIENCE, AS IS HIS FAILING.

CINEMATICO: Hello, and welcome to The Last Video Store on Earth. I’m Cinematico Magnifico.

Our first movie this week is, “Contractual Obligations,” featuring stand-up actress Brittigail Barbiturates as Tayloria Surname, a recently divorced quantum hairstylist and hobbyist civil engineer struggling with a sprained elbow. But just when it seems she’s found the strength to play tennis again with the local convenience store clerk, Boberto, Tayloria discovers the city will be wiped off the face of the Earth when their town’s poorly maintained sewer system explodes in three days time.

Let’s take a look.

CUT TO:

A CLIP FROM “CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS”.

A CONVENIENCE STORE. BOBERTO, THE CLERK, STANDS BEHIND THE COUNTER, PRACTICING HIS BACKSWING. A WOMAN SCRATCHES AWAY AT A LOTTERY TICKETS AS SHE PURCHASES ADDITIONAL SCRATCH-OFF TICKETS. A LINE OF CUSTOMERS GATHERS, WAITS BEHIND THIS.

WOMAN: (STILL SCRATCHING TICKETS) Can I get two more of the Broke-and-Desperates, three of the Sunken Costs, and one dollar in quarters?

BOBERTO: Quarters?

WOMAN: (HOLDS UP WHAT USED TO BE A QUARTER) Yeah, I’ve already worn this one down to practically nothing.

CUSTOMER #1: How much longer is this going to take?

BOBERTO: It takes as long as it takes.

BRITTIGAIL AS TAYLORIA STORMS INTO A CONVENIENCE STORE. SHE SPEAKS FROM BEHIND THE GATHERING LINE OF CUSTOMERS.

TAYLORIA: Boberto!

BOBERTO: Tayloria!

TAYLORIA: I have to talk with you!

BOBRETO: I’m gonna need a minute to deal with this line.

TAYLORIA: Boberto, this is important!

CUSTOMER #2: You heard the man. (GESTURES) Back of the line is that way.

WOMAN: Oh, I got a free ticket on this one.

CUSTOMERS: (ANNOYED GROANS)

TAYLORIA: Boberto, we need to leave! Now!

BOBERTO: Leave? I just clocked in.

CUSTOMER #1: Get outta here, lady!

CUSTOMER #2: Yeah! You’re holding up the line!

CUSTOMERS ANGRILY PELT TAYLORIA WITH ASSORTED SNACKS AND DRINKS.

WOMAN: (SHAKES HEAD) Some people just don’t know when they’re being a problem!

TAYLORIA: (GROWLS) There’s a gas pocket building in the sewer system, and if we don’t leave now, you, me, the Gulp-n-Leave, and everyone else in a five-mile radius of the city limits are going to be blown to Hell and back!

A SILENCE.

BOBERTO: (OVERLY EMOTIONAL) You had me at “blown to Hell and back”.

CUT TO:

CINEMATICO, SUFFERING THROUGH IT ALL.

CINEMATICO: Written by A. Moron and directed by an incompetent chihuaua, “Contractual Obligation” is plagiarized dribble from the chin of other, equally terrible films. The three-and-a-half hours I spent locked in a closet, watching it on my phone with a broken screen, were mostly wasted. The resulting brain damage has left me incontinent, insufferable, and utterly incapable of recalling anything other than seething anger and the faint smell of toast. I hate it, I hate you, and I wish I’d never been born. But because this movie was also co-produced by today’s sponsor, Food-in-a-Box, I’m being forced to give it some sort of positive rating on an arbitrary scale.

Up next, we’ll take a look behind the scenes of the upcoming romantic horror dramedy, “Boners.” But first, another complete waste of time.

Paper Bag Critic: Last Scene w/ Dacota Wittacee-Nottakay

We now return to The Last Video Store On Earth with CINEMATICO MAGNIFICO, already in-progress. 

CINEMATICO: Welcome back to The Last Video Store on Earth. I’m Cinematico Magnifico.

Our next segment is “Last Scene w/”, in which I finally leave this godforsaken place to locate, tag, and interview the feral and semi-domesticated artists and entertainers lurking and crying in the dark corners of Southern California.

Today’s quarry is writer, director, and amateur ear-wax collector, Dacota Wittacee-Nottakay.

Enjoy.

CUT TO:

A hillside somewhere in Riverside, but not anywhere near a farting river. Cinematico joins DACOTA WITTACEE-NOTTAKAY beneath a tree.

CINEMATICO: (voice-over) I found Dacota sitting in the shade of a large oak set against the weed and bramble choked hills of Riverside. A tee-shirt with only the word “fart” printed across the front and a rather snazzy pair of jeans belied a lean frame. Long hair masked dark, expressive eyes. And his beard smelled of honey and cilantro.

I first met Dacota when he was performing standup comedy in a sports bar within a bowling alley within a nice place to live. Now, I watched on as he needle-felted small figures of people he had never met, yet loved all the same.

CINEMATICO: What consumes you to transmute such magnificently bizarro creations to life?

DACOTA: (incoherent mumbling)

CINEMATICO: Fascinating.

Dacota… There’s a discussion to be had as to whether or not – as well as to the possible whys – audience are a bit hyper-sensitive to material that challenges them these days. But I also believe there’s a discussion to be had regarding those who make such material being equally quick to deny or deflect responsibility. Has there ever been a time where you’ve regretted a joke, scene, or some other moment in your work, or perhaps felt you’ve outgrown your older material?

DACOTA: (incoherent mumbling)

CINEMATICO: I’m sorry to hear that. Perhaps others can glean something from such a tragic loss of life and limbs.

Dacota… May I call you “Dacota”?

DACOTA: (incoherent mumbling)

CINEMATICO: Wonderful.

Dacota, you’re a fellow cinephile. Have you ever felt betrayed or cheated by a film, and if given the opportunity would you set fire to those involved?

Dacota reaches into a small sack, releases a hummingbird.

CINEMATICO: (voice-over) But before answering my question, Dacota reached into a small sack at his side and released a hummingbird.

Cinamtico watches the bird fly off.

And as I watched the hummingbird vanish off into the otherside of the 91, the bearded man who smelled of cilantro spoke these words of wisdom:

DACOTA: (incoherent mumbling)

Cinematico turns back around to find…

Only a note and a needle-felted figure of Cinematico where Dacota once sat.

CINEMATICO: (voice-over) When I turned to thank Dacota for his time, he was gone. In his place, a needle-felted figure of me and a hand-written note. The doll resembled me, and had what appeared to be a time and date written into its pattern. The note explained the doll foretold my death and prayed I make use of the time I had left.

CINEMATICO: Shit.

CUT TO:

The Last Video Store on Earth. Again.

CINEMATICO: Dacota Wittacee-Nottakay is still at large, and is considered personable and charming.

Up next after the break, we take a look back at the 1997 seminal box-office disaster, “I’m a Middle-Aged Werewolf,” featuring John Jablonski and Maggie Sex-Pun.

Paper Bag Critic: Yesterday’s Tomorrow Today

CINEMATICO MAGNIFICO, who may or may not be an actual anthropomorphic bag of popcorn, speaks from The Last Video Store on Earth to an audience that may or may not actually exist.

CINEMATICO: Welcome back to The Last Video Store on Earth. Our next film this week is “Yesterday’s Tomorrow Today,” the latest bit of indigestible roughage from director Anthonio “Tony” Tonedeaf.

Based on Bill Billiamson’s classic erotic novella, “Shut Your Stupid Mouth, and Die Already,” “Yesterday’s Tomorrow Today” features Bleary-Eyed Squarejaw as “Jeffony Suburbs,” an unemployed candlelabler and deadbeat father desperate to save his daughter from the loving support of her stepfather, Minoru Tee, as played by a parking lot attendant only credited as “Doug.”

Here’s a clip.

Cut to a clip of a poor attempt at dramatic fluff in which BLEARY-EYED SQUAREJAW as JEFFONY SUBURBS bashes his skull ceaselessly against the steering wheel of his car.

SUBURBS: Metaphorical angst! Metaphorical angst! Metaphorical angst!

Cut to Cinematico.

CINEMATICO: While not quite the introspective character drama of his previous film, “Twist Them Harder,” nor managing the seizure-inducing charm of “Clitor You, Clitor Me,” “Yesterday’s Tomorrow Today” is a movie in the sense that it features actors performing scenes from a script in front of a camera and ultimately displayed on some sort of screen.

That said. While Tonedeaf’s latest work does manage to make me regret every moment spent with it, it still made me regret every moment spent with it.

But whether you find yourself drawn to the sadistically abusive love story between a man and his car, the artificial sweetener of familial neglect, or simply have little regard for the diminishing time any of us have, “Yesterday’s Tomorrow Today” exists.

A beat. Then…

When we come back, we’ll sit down with stand-up actress Brittigail Barbiturates to discuss her upcoming project, “Contractual Obligations.” But first, another complete waste of time.

Monster Masterpiece Marathon

A BUMPER: THE SORT FOR A LOCAL TELEVISION STATION’S HALLOWEEN HORROR MOVIE MARATHON. GRAPHICS, TIMESLOTS, GENERIC UPBEAT MUSIC.

STEVE: (VOICE-OVER) Tonight, the crazy train makes another stop between sanity and madness for the next chilling installment of “Cinematico Magnifico’s Cinematic Monster Masterpiece Marathon”!

THE MUSIC TRANSITIONS TO SOME CAMPY, YET MENACING DIDDY.

RELEVANT FOOTAGE AND GRAPHICS FOR “AUDREY” APPEAR.

Dr. Howard Fine thought she was just another face in a hotel bar. But when the woman’s face changed, he’s left with only one question, “Who is… Audrey?”

Find out the answer at 5:05, when the nightly scares begin with “Audrey”!

MUSIC TRANSITIONS TO A CAMPY, YET WHOLLY UN-MENACING MELODY.

Then, at 7:05… 

RELEVANT FOOTAGE AND GRAPHICS FOR “I’M A MIDDLE-AGED WEREWOLF” APPEAR.

Bronson Pubic-Lice is a man rough around the edges, and too quick to bite. But after a night out with the boys goes horribly wrong, all he really wants to be… is a good boy.

John Jablonksi and Maggie Sex-Pun star in: “I’m a Middle-Aged Werewolf!” A second act… with a twist.

MUSIC TRANSITIONS TO A DISTINCTLY MENACING TUNE.

But then, at 9:05…

RELEVANT FOOTAGE AND GRAPHICS FOR “PUMPKINSTILTSKIN” APPEAR.

All Jack Jacksonnovan wanted was one last Halloween with friends. Now he’s making sure the screams never end!

Elongated Nipples is… Pumpkinstiltskin! You’ll be goard out of your mind!

MUSIC TRANSITIONS TO A COOL, YET UNCOOL CAMPY INDIE 90S VIBE.

And for one last unpleasant scream before bed… 

RELEVANT FOOTAGE AND GRAPHICS FOR “THIS GIRL IS POISON!” APPEAR.

the 90’s comedic action-horror indie cult classic, “This Girl is Poison!” Featuring Allonna Woman as January Embers, a woman on the run from her past and a price on her head. But just when she’s forced to return to her hometown, an evil poisonous cloud threatens to kill everyone!

RETURN OF THE GENERIC, UPBEAT MUSIC.

All this tonight and more all month long as part of “Cinematico Magnifico’s Cinematic Monster Masterpiece Marathon.” Only on Santa Carla Public Television.