Monday 21 Apr

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04/15/2014 | Comments 0

No Holds Barred

RLJ Entertainment's new Blu-ray for No Holds Barred begins with what seems like dozens of trailers for movies starring pro wrestlers from the WWE talent pool. Each flick went direct to home video, but once upon a time — aka 1989 — one had to go to the multiplex to catch such a spectacle.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

Knights of Badassdom

In 2008, the third act of the guy comedy Role Models used LARPing — live-action role-playing, that is — as a backdrop for our protagonists' lessons learned. Today, Knights of Badassdom extends that half-hour into a full feature, to the point where viewers are left not smiling, but exhausted. 
04/02/2014 | Comments 0

Switched on

Not everything on television has to appeal to mass audiences. In fact, with the further fractioning of viewership thanks to alternatives like Netflix and VOD, more series can afford to become more niche. Here are five examples of shows both past and present — and new to DVD and/or Blu-ray — that encompass some of the more outrageous ideas ever to go beyond boardroom discussion.
04/02/2014 | Comments 0

Confession of Murder

Seventeen years after slaying 10 women and getting away with it, the charismatic serial killer Du-sok (Park Si-hoo) comes clean with a Confession of Murder, in this 2012 South Korean crime thriller. He does so by publishing a book that dishes all the grisly details.
04/02/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Movies · Documentary · Beauty Day

Beauty Day

Before ‘Jackass,’ there was Cap’n Video.

Rod Lott February 10th, 2013

Don’t feel stupid: I didn’t know who Ralph Zavadil was, either. After all, we can’t be faulted for living in Oklahoma City instead of Ontario, Canada. Ultimately, it makes no difference, because Beauty Day, the documentary about the man, is a fun viewing nonetheless. That’s because there’s something about watching stunts of bodily harm that holds universal appeal.


It debuts on demand Feb. 12 from FilmBuff.

As Beauty Day informs us, Zavadil was a man before his time as cable-TV personality Cap’n Video, a David Lee Roth-looking, Jackass-style camcorder prankster who was doing his thing in the mid-1990s, before Johnny Knoxville and the gang even dreamt of getting paid to puke. Director Jay Cheel’s doc opens with footage of the Cap’n’s apparently most notorious stunt, in which he jumps from atop a very tall ladder onto the cover of his swimming pool.

Or at least that’s what he intended to do. The ladder wasn’t properly stabilized and ... well, y’know, physics is one mean em-effer. I mean, Zavadil still hit the cover ... but only after hitting the cement, breaking his neck in the process. It’s a miracle he survived.

But he did, and the film spends time with the chain smoker reminiscing about those good ol’ days of walking through an automated car wash, snorting raw eggs, eating a homemade pie of Cool Whip and dog hair, sledding off his roof, lighting his face on fire, skiing on clothesline, and licking chocolate sauce off a puppy. Hey, it was for Easter.

Zavadil claims he wasn’t doing it to be famous; instead, “It's just being a fucking nutbar and being the nutbar in everyone.” And yet, the back half of the movie follows him attempting to revive Cap’n Video for a 20th-anniversary special.

Cheel certainly found a ready-and-willing subject in Zavadil, an individual — boy, is he ever! — who has no problem saying what’s on his mind, whether about the past, present or future. Oft-spoken is a phrase from which Beauty Day takes its title — one that is out-of-context odd and not entirely indicative of the mild mayhem contained within.

Cap’n Video had a small, but loyal audience in his original run, but his profile should expand as this entertaining documentary spreads and streams.  —Rod Lott

Hey! Read This:
Jackass 3D film review     
Jackass: The Lost Tapes DVD review   
Nitro Circus: The Movie Blu-ray review    

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