Book Review: Confessions of a Puppetmaster

Confessions of a Puppet Master: A Hollywood Memoir of Ghouls, Guts, and Gonzo Filmmaking
Published by William Morrow, 2021. 288 pages
By Charles Band & Adam Felber

Whether you like Charles Band, or any of his production companies such as Full Moon or Empire, you cannot argue the fact that this man has made his career out of doing the kind of films he wants, usually picking something to exploit and make money from, which then lets him continue what he’s doing. I know that’s a broad statement, especially coming from a guy that doesn’t like a lot of stuff that Band has his fingers in. But there are more than a few of those that I have really enjoyed over the years. Not to mention the fact that Band still believes and practices the good old-fashioned ballyhoo. That alone, I have to give him credit for.

If I was going to have one complaint about this book it would be that it is only 288 pages. I would have expected from someone of his long running career, that this would have been well over 500+ pages. There are plenty of great stories in here, but figured there would be many more. Maybe that’s for volume 2? Band not one to speak truthfully about his past, the mistakes that he’s made and how he’s lost his fortune more than once, so I give him a lot of respect for that. This isn’t a bit of puff journalism on “gee look at all the great stuff I’ve done” but a really inside look of someone that wanted to work in the film business but by his terms. He may not be conventional, but his methods work.

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Book Review: It Came from the Video Aisle!

IT CAME FROM THE VIDEO AISLE

It Came from the Video Aisle!
Published by Schiffer Publishing, 2017. 480 pages.
By Dave Jay, William S. Wilson, & Torsten Dewi

You couldn’t have grown up in the video store era of the late ’80s/early ’90s, and not know who Full Moon Entertainment was. In fact, their product was usually all over the shelves in the horror section. They really were a staple of the horror market back then. Sure, it didn’t matter if most of the films weren’t any good, there were sure enough of them to make you hope that maybe the one you were currently holding in your hands would be one of the good ones! All seriousness aside, we all know the quality of the end result in a majority of Full Moon titles are, but no matter what, you have to give them, and Charles Band, credit for what they were continuing to do, which was making low budget features the old fashion way…a lot of work and a lot of ballyhoo. There are more than a few of Full Moon’s titles that I actually enjoy, but nowhere near is that a high percentage. But just as started into this new book on the company and the man behind it, I was amazed at how it drew me in more and more into the world of Full Moon, and those fighting for the cause of low budget filmmaking.

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