The Chicago beauties are out.
It’s sunny and they are waltzing down Lincoln.
Flowing dresses and short shorts.
The breeze, smelling of hot dogs and asphault,
Blows through their hair like fingers of Zeus.
My creepy eyes oogle as I pass by a slice of pizza
Smashed on the sidewalk missing only a single bite.
Trampled by a million footsteps.
This is not a poem.
Late Afternoon of the Living Dead Magazine has been hit with some legal and financial troubles, which has resulted in the June issue being printed in black and white. The magazine’s editor, Bruce Snyder, opens the magazine with an explanation and an apology to actor Ron Rotondo. Below is an excerpt.
Over the past 5 years (can you believe it?) we have striven to bring you fresh and interesting content surrounding a piece of art that clocks in at just 104 minutes. It has been a challenge, to say the least, to bring our dear readers new material each and every month. But when the majority of the film’s stars refuse to participate or cooperate with the OFFICIAL magazine, the challenge becomes downright depressing.
We made a mistake when ran a photograph of Ron Rotondo on our May cover. When it came to our attention that it was an unauthorized photo, we issued an official apology to Mr. Rotondo. Rather than letting it slide and embracing the magazine and its fans, Mr. Rotondo chose to sue us for every penny we had.
So again, we’re very sorry, Ron. We’re sorry we made a singular error over the past half decade. We’re sorry we had to print this issue in black & white because it was all we could afford. We’re sorry that our top story is about Chris Hutson’s fucking SOCK, because you and everyone else in the cast don’t give a SHIT about the gem of the movie you made and you don’t want anything to do with us, the people who care about you. We’re sorry. And we hope you enjoy your trip to Key West on our dime.
An unauthorized photo of Ron Rotondo is featured in the latest issue of Late Afternoon of the Living Dead Magazine. There’s also an earth-shattering article written by Bichard Rachman that LAOTLD fans won’t want to miss. Here is the story in its entirety.
What Shook The Bush?
Why LAOTLD is NOT a rebootquel of AOTLD, but a true sequel.
By Bichard Rachman
Afternoon of the Living Dead and Late Afternoon of the Living Dead are two timeless classics that offer as much enjoyment in replay as they do in the original viewing. I have dedicated a litany of posts on my blog (Life’s a Bichard) to exploring the minutia of both films. It was 2:30 a.m. last Tuesday in my hometown of Danvers, IL. I was having an –OTLD marathon when a lightning bolt struck. It is my theory that both films are more related than we could have possibly imagined. Late Afternoon of the Living Dead is not a rebootquel as we were led to believe, but a true sequel!
Think back to the climax in the park in AOTLD. There is the famous shot of Caine (later to be called “Chris” in LAOTLD) noticing the moving branches on a distant bush in the park. The question of what shook the bush has never been answered. Never even been hinted at in any of the interviews or press conferences. It is your author’s humble opinion that…get ready for it…
Shelton shook the bush!
The implications of that statement are mind-boggling, I know. Here’s how it plays out. Shelton, a freshly-spawned ghost, reveals in LAOTLD that he isn’t good at manifesting and affecting the physical world yet. Moving a branch is about all he could hope to do. But then the question becomes WHY? Why move the branches to draw Caine/Chris over? To warn him. Warn him of what? Warn him of WHY Steph was the only survivor of her group. When you think about it, the truth becomes clear. She had them MURDERED BY ZOMBIES! She wasn’t anticipating running into Caine/Chris after she had her friends murdered. She was only staying with Caine/Chris until she could figure out how to kill him and get away.
Here’s where things get even more odd. I hope you’re sitting down. It is my theory that Caine/Chris was never killed by Steph! The entire ending of AOTLD was a dream and I have proof! Look at the shot composition and camera movement. Right after Chris sees the shaking bush and he goes to investigate, the camera movement becomes much more sweeping and dramatic. There are no other shots like this anywhere in the movie. I think it was a subtle technique by the director, Chris Hutson, to cue the audience in that we are now in an alternate reality of some kind. It is MY theory that Shelton actually hit Chris on the head, knocking him unconscious. He did this because he was trying to protect Chris from Steph’s cruel schemes. Very consistent with his character. Caine/Chris then had a dream of being killed by Steph, which plays to the concept that he is a minor psychic, an idea that is flirted with more than once in LAOTLD.
I believe Caine/Chris woke up alone in the park. When Chris never came back from the bush, Steph saw her chance to take off. When Steph seized the opportunity to run, Shelton made the hard choice to leave Caine/Chris laying under the bush and follow the villainous Steph. Time passes. Due to head trauma from the blow in the bush, Caine now believes his name is Chris. He has more adventures and is eventually attacked again. This is where we pick up with LAOTLD. When Shelton later meets him again and Caine introduces himself as Chris, the ghost sees Caine is suffering from some minor mental affliction and decides to keep the details of his adventures with Steph a secret. He quietly reintroduces himself and continues protecting Chris.
The two movies are connected. Chris’s real name is Caine. Shelton was tracking Steph’s group first, looking for a way to thwart her. Caine never died in AOTLD. This theory also answers who the other group of survivors is that Caine was helping when he talks to Jenna in LAOTLD. And finally…. yes, STEPH IS STILL OUT THERE. And you thought Ron was bad.
Wow. I feel like I just discovered a new planet in our own solar system. I think this was director Chris Hutson’s plan all along. Next week I will describe why I feel Chris Hutson is the greatest artist of our time and how, through subtle and long reaching direction on Afternoon of the Living Dead, it was actually he, NOT Jason Huls, that directed Late Afternoon of the Living Dead!
Chris Hutson was available for comment but no one called.
Bichard Rachman is a frequent contributor to Late Afternoon of the Living Dead Magazine and the self-professed “Author of Darkness”. He has written over a dozen horror novels, including A Dance with Blood, The She-Devil of Danvers and TerrorBike. He also works the day shift at the Carls Jr. in Danvers, Illinois.
R. Kelly’s status as an R&B and hip hop legend cannot be disputed. I won’t even waste time pointing out the man’s list of accomplishments. You already know them. Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised this morning on my way to work when I heard R. Kelly’s Ignition remix from his 2003 album, Chocolate Factory. Every time I hear this song, I find new meaning and depth and this morning was no different. Here are the lyrics that stuck out this time:
Now it’s like Murder She Wrote Once I get you out them clothes
I started to wonder. How IS it like Murder She Wrote? To find out, let’s start by examining the IMDB description of the show:
Mystery writer finds herself investigating murders that occur around her.
The show ran for 12 seasons from 1984 to 1996 and aired 264 episodes. It is one of the most successful and longest-running television shows in history. Kelly is one of the best selling music artists in the United States and one of the most successful R&B artists of the last 25 years. So the lyrics “Now it’s like Murder She Wrote” is clearly meant to associate R. Kelly’s sexual prowess with ongoing success.
Of course, there are other ways of looking at it and Kelly is known for playing with his listeners’ minds. Maybe he took a lady home and got her out of her clothes only to realize she’s dead. RK would then be at the center of a murder mystery. A more fun (horrible?) thought is that he went home with Angela Lansbury.
Knowing our friend, R. Kelly, all three of the explanations are probably true. Oh, that Robert.
Actor Kari Irwin is profiled in the April issue of Late Afternoon of the Living Dead Magazine. Here are some excerpts from her interview.
Kari, you played a zombie in the Midwest Killaz music video for End of the Road, which is on the Late Afternoon DVD. Tell us about how you got involved in the project and what it was like making the video.
I had the good fortune of meeting one of the filmmakers, Paul Brooks, at a vegan potluck a few months before. Amongst the vibrant people in the group, Paul was certainly the only one filming zombie movies and rapping in bands like Midwest Killaz. My friend Lauren and I were super excited to participate in Paul’s project because it meant we got to spend an entire day dressed like zombies, which, obviously, was the one thing missing in our lives until that point. It took awhile to get the zombie leg-drag right, but the directors were patient with us and it was really fun. Afterwards we went in full make-up and costume to Noodles and Company and pretended we didn’t know we were covered in fake blood and prosthetic wounds.
That’s awesome! You mentioned your friend Lauren Nelson- There’s an easter egg on the DVD of you and her doing The Electric Slide. Was that something you were trying to work into the music video or did you just feel like dancing?
Being a zombie sets you free.
This is true. Several characters from Late Afternoon of the Living Dead also appear in the music video. But it’s a little confusing because you have Bob and Shelton in there, fighting zombies with Lester Brody. So it’s like… are the events of the music video intended to be part of the movie’s timeline or are they completely separate?
At the time of the music video filming, I wasn’t really sure if the events were connected or where the Midwest Killaz really fit in. After seeing the film premiere in Normal, Illinois, I have come to the conclusion that they are separate, though the connection could be deep and elusive and beyond me.
At the end of the music video, you get impaled by a flying drum stick. Were you happy with your death scene?
At first, I had hopes of being strangled by Jason’s feather boa, but being impaled by a drumstick was the next best thing.
Since End of the Road, you have been involved in some interesting film and television projects. Can you tell us about some of them?
After End of the Road, I was an extra in three Bollywood films in Mumbai (Un Hazaroon Ke Naam, Pyaar Impossible, My Name is Khan), a few commercials for Indian television, and I guest-starred for over 25 episodes in an Indian television sitcom called Taarak Mehta Kaa Ooltah Chashmah. The show is the highest rated sitcom in India, so I had a small degree of celebrity in that country before I came back to the United States. I just received an offer for a new television drama, so I’m currently deciding if it is something I’d return to Mumbai for right now. I’m not a huge fan of television dramas – I’d be much more eager to move across the world if it were for Bollywood zombie film. Maybe there’s a market for that… whatcha think, guys?