Archive for September, 2015

Big Legal Tussle Over…Manos: The Hands of Fate???

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

It’s one thing for there to be a legal battle over the rights for a good movie, but it’s quite another when the battle is over Manos: The Hands of Fate, one of the worst films of all time. (Note: That article is up on Playboy.com, so it might be blocked at your place of work.)

In 2011, a collector of film prints uncovered the original negative of Manos and embarked on an inexplicable project to restore the film with all the white-glove attention archivists give to Hollywood classics. His efforts would incur the wrath of a mysterious man with a fake New Zealand accent named Rupert, as well as Joe Warren, Hal Warren’s embittered son, who intends to preserve the Manos legacy at all costs.

Hal Warren’s son comes off as more than a bit of a jerk. “I’m the director’s son! I’m entitled to a cut even if the work is out of copyright!”

Fortunately for “fans” of the films, the restored Blu-Ray of Manos: The Hands of Fate is finally coming out October 13. More information on the restoration can be found here.

And as long as I’m slinging random sports news…

Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

Two random updates:

  • Texans kicker Randy Bullock has been released after missing two extra points and a 43 yard field goal against Tampa Bay. The Texans are signing veteran Nick Novak to take his place.
  • NBA guard Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls has managed to break the bone around his eye. Given his previous long history of injuries, maybe Rose should consult with specialists to see if his home is built over an old Indian burial ground…
  • SMU Banned For Rules Violations

    Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

    Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. Though it’s basketball rather than football, and it’s just a post-season ban rather than the “death penalty.” Also seems to be academic cheating rather than handing players envelopes full of cash.

    And SMU coach Larry Brown is suspended for nine games. Honestly, I had no idea Brown was actually coaching SMU these days, which has to be a big letdown for a man that’s won an NBA Championship. He has the reputation as one of the bast basketball teachers in the world, but just can’t manage to get along with people.

    A Chance to Own a Stephen Hawking Signature

    Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

    Right now a book signed by Stephen Hawking be yours for only a bit over 20 grand, but expect that to go up.

    

    And it’s not even one of Hawking’s own books, but a farewell gift for a co-worker who was leaving the Institute of Theoretical Astronomy at Cambridge University signed by the faculty, including Hawking.

    “Hawking autographs are of the utmost rarity.” Indeed, though it’s already too rich for my blood, and I suspect it could easily go for 3-4 times the current price…

    Shoegazer Sunday: Slowdive’s “I Believe”

    Sunday, September 27th, 2015

    Yep, another Slowdive rarity…

    Library Additions: Two Horror First Editions

    Thursday, September 24th, 2015

    The only thing tying these two books together is that they’re both horror and I bought both from Lloyd Currey at 50% off:

  • Baker, Denys Val. The Face in the Mirror. Arkham House, 1971. First edition hardback, a Fine copy in a Fine- dust jacket with just a trace of wear at bottom edge (probably do to an old fold-around dj protector that doesn’t encase the edges). Joshi, 60 Years of Arkham House, 112. Jaffery, Horrors and Unpleasantries, 118. Nielsen, Arkham House Books: A Collector’s Guide, 118. Chalker & Owings (1991), page 39. Not in Bleiler’s Guide to Supernatural Fiction (an odd omission). Bought for $12.50
  • Wagner, Karl Edward. Why Not You and I? Dark Harvest, 1987. First edition hardback, #252 of 300 copies signed by Wagner, a Fine copy in a Near Fine dust jacket with waviness to dust jacket rear, in a Near Fine paper slipcase. I also have a copy of the trade edition inscribed to me by Wagner at the 1988 Worldcon in New Orleans. Bought for $32.50.
  • Library Addition: Paul Di Filippo’s Cosmocopia

    Wednesday, September 23rd, 2015

    When this cool novel/art assemblage was announced in 2007 at a price of $50 (I think it was listed at $65 on publication), I thought two things about it:

  • That’s cool, and I want one.
  • I don’t want to pay $50 (or $65) for it.
  • They were even offered at a slightly short discount for dealers, which is why I passed on it. When it came out in late 2008, neither I (nor anyone else) was buying much of anything, and I’m sure the lavish nature of the production helped contribute to Payseur & Schmidt’s demise.

    Di Filippo, Paul (illustrated by Jim Woodrung). Cosmocopia. Payseur & Schmidt, 2008. First edition hardback, one of 500 copies with a band signed by Di Filippo and Jim Woodrung around the box, in a decorated cardboard box with a cardstock illustration and a Jigsaw puzzle, in the case as well as the book, sans dust jacket, as issued. Paul Di Filippo alerted me to the fact that Fantagraphics bookstore had copies on hand for Jim Woodrung’s signing there at $30 a pop and I managed to call and snag the last copy.

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    Library Addition: Limited Edition of Pulphouse 8 Signed by Greg Egan

    Monday, September 21st, 2015

    You may be aware that I’m one of the few book collectors that has an inscribed associational copy of one of Greg Egan’s books (Axiomatic, inscribed to his editor David Pringle). These days, Egan doesn’t do signings, doesn’t attend conventions, and refuses to do signed limited editions of his work. However, before he instituted this policy, he did sign one limited edition toward the beginning of his career, and I recently picked that up:

    Rusch, Kristine Kathryn, editor. Pulphouse: The Hardback Magazine: Issue Eight: Summer 1990. Hardback first edition, #50 of 250 numbered copies signed by all the contributors, a Fine copy, sans dust jacket, as issued, in a Fine slipcase. Signed by Greg Egan at the title page for his story “The Moral Virologist.” Also signed by George Alec Effinger, Jack McDevitt, Jonathan Lethem, etc. Chalker/Owings (1991), page 364. Supplements an unsigned copy (I have the entire 12 issue run in the regular edition.) Bought off eBay for $39.95.

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    His signature here is actually neater than the one on the inscribed Axiomatic.

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    I may not be the only Sf collector with two Greg Egan signatures, but there can’t be many…

    Shoegazer Sudnay: Mvnich’s “Magnicide”

    Sunday, September 20th, 2015

    I think Mvnich, despite having a name some render as “Munich,” hail from Spain. Other than that, I have very little information on them. Here’s “Magnicide.”

    Library Addition: Signed First Edition of J. G. Ballard’s Super-Cannes

    Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

    Pick up another signed J. G. Ballard first edition:

    Ballard, J. G. Super-Cannes. Flamingo, 2000. First edition hardback, a Fine- copy in a Near Fine+ dust jacket with bumping at points, a 1/8″ closed tear at bottom rear fold point, and very slight haze rubbing to reflective silver dust jacket. Inscribed by Ballard: “To Jane,/J.G. Ballard”. Bought for £24 plus shipping.

    I think I have a total of six signed Ballards, including the News From the Sun chapbook and the limited edition of his autobiography, Miracles of Life: Shanghai to Shepperton.