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  • Blast from the Past! 1999 for Mod (Retro) Movie Monday

    Posted on May 16th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 3 comments

    mod-movie-mondaysThis week we swing back to the glorious ’60s with a mid-century mod extravaganza,

    Blast from the Pastblast-from-past-poster

    Starring Brendon Frasier, Alicia Silverstone, Christopher Walken and Sissy Spacek

    Duck and cover kids, because the laughs are flying! Ok that was corny as hell, but it’s in the spirit of this goofy flick. It’s all about a typical, mid-century California couple with a typical, 35 year-stocked underground bomb shelter which houses air scrubbers, a hydroponic garden and an exact duplicate layout of their surface home right down to the corner bar with the martini shaker. A series of events drives them down into the shelter, and once the automatic locks are set, they’re forced to stay for 35 years until the radiation has dissipated.Not long after that their son is born. They name him Adam.

    blast-from-past-eve-adamThirty-five years later, as the supplies finally begin to run short, Adam is given the task of returning to the surface to check out the situation and get more supplies…and find a nice girl to bring home so they can start repopulating the world.

    Ok, I think you’re starting to catch the drift. In 1962, the quaint little house was situated in suburban LA among palm trees and orange groves. But by the late 1990s the section had deteriorated into a disgusting, miserable area of failed urban sprawl. When Adam reaches the surface, he finds nothing to be normal, and assumes the weird people are mutants deviated from the nuclear fallout, and that the poor condition of the streets and building is due to 35 years of war. Well, I guess he wasn’t too far off.

    As the saying goes, hilarity ensues as Adam (with his 50’s manners and knowledge of culture up to 1962) tries to blend in with the modern times and get the supplies necessary to sustain his family in the shelter for another 35 years.blast-past-bomb-shelter

    I think this movie is great on so many levels it’s hard to know where to start. Frasier makes a great 50’s guy from his look to his mannerisms. He can even swing dance. Alicia Silverstone has the right amount of modern wise-ass mixed with a 50’s sitcom innocence. The movie really shows the complete difference between the old days and the modern without over-doing it. Even though the whole thing seems fantastic, it’s all pretty believable. And funny.

    As usual I won’t give away any important plot points for jokes. Suffice to say when a swingin’ kat from 1962 lands feet first into 1998, you’re going to have some funny situations. They pull it off great in this flick.

    Martinis for drinks, of course, and for food…how about some Atomic Wings? Or maybe just popcorn.

  • New Booze for the Tiki Bar: DeKuyper’s Key Largo Schnapps Liqueur

    Posted on May 15th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 12 comments
    Ah, the Tiki Good Life

    Ah, the Tiki Good Life

    I honestly don’t know if this stuff is brand new (Bought it last night, but it’s nowhere to be found on the DeKuyper website) or if I’ve just missed it. Either way, it’s new to me, so here we go…

    DeKuyper’s Key Largo Schnapps Liqueur Review

    The Label says it mixes tropical flavors with island breezes or something…Ok, I was already into some rum when I tried to read the damned thing…anyway tasting it straight up (which I never recommend for anything intentionally made for mixing, unless it’s to get an idea of the flavor…translation, don’t do this as shots) it has an extremely sweet, vaguely citrus flavor with a silky, syrupy feel. It’s not as orangey as Triple Sec, not as strong as coconut rum. It’s clear, so it won’t screw up your drink’s color. Basically a sweet, mellow, fruity liqueur that adds a nice flavor without overpowering the drink.

    Key Largo Liqueur by DeKuyper

    Key Largo Liqueur by DeKuyper

    The Bottle:

    Clearly I only bought this ($9.99 at Winn Dixie) because of the bottle. No Floridian Tiki Bar should be without any booze that has “Key”, “Tiki” or “Parrot” in the name. On that same note, Anything bright green, blue or orange is also required. This bottle has Key in the name and parrots on the label. Fannnntastic.

    Recipes for this stuff range from simply mixing with OJ and grenadine to a nice sounding concoction called the Key Largo Kooler. There’s not much about it online (which is why I suspect it is fairly new…either that or hopelessly unpopular). I tried it with the orange juice and thought it wasn’t bad, although a little too sweet for my taste (and way to sweet to be considered a real, Exotic Tiki bar cocktail, although the potential is there with some tinkering). The krazy thing is, with all the other flavored brandies and liqueurs in the world, I’m not sure stocking this stuff for drinking purposes is necessary. But for ten clams, it sure looks great next to the Tiki idol on the bar.

    Have you tried this booze? Leave a comment with your recipe or…well, comments!

    -Tiki Chris reporting from the floor in front of the bar after too many Zombies.
    Tiki Lounge Talk, the Tiki Culture Blog for swingin’ hipsters and hep kats.

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  • Blazing Saddles! 1974 – Mod Movie Monday at TLT

    Posted on May 10th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 3 comments

    blazing_saddles_posterFrom the brilliant mind of Mel Brooks, a movie that could never be made today (although a musical version is in the works)…

    Blazing Saddles, 1974

    Starring Mel Brooks, Cleavon Little, Harvey Korman, Slim Pickens, Madeline Kahn and Gene Wilder.

    Brooks went all-out when he made Blazing Saddles, the story of corrupt official Hedley LaMarr (Harvey Korman) who attempts to destroy a frontier town to make way for the railroad. He hires a band of roughnecks to run the people out, and appoints a black man (Cleavon Little) as sheriff to demoralize them from within. His plans backfire when the Sheriff Bart  proves himself to the town, in spite of their race issues – and becomes LaMarr’s nemesis.blazing_saddles-cleavon_little

    The flick is funny as hell, even though it touches (pounces?) on some very un-funny themes. It’s underpinned with a strong “racism is for morons” theme, and shows us how ridiculous racism is – by making fun of just about every race and culture possible. Native Americans speaking Yiddish, KKK robes with smiley faces and “have a nice day” printed on them, and 19th century characters singing “I Get a Kick Out Of You” are just some of the silly, twisted gags you’ll dig in this movie. And of course, for those old enough to remember the trailer…One of the most infamous scenes ever, where Alex Karras punches out a horse. (PETA don’t worry, the horse was fine.)

    blazing_saddles_kahnThere’s a particular scene where Lili Von Shtupp (Madaline Kahn) sings a song entitled “I’m Tired” in the style of Marlene Dietrict that will have you rolling on the floor.

    Add to all this a cameo by Count Basie and his Orchestra, a motorcycle gang with handlebars on horses, and Frankie Lane singing the theme song (that he thought was for a drama) and you’ve got one of the funniest movies of all time…really…it’s #6 on AFI’s 100 Years…100 Laughs.blazing_saddles_wilder

    One last note, taken from IMDB: During a speech awarding Mel Brooks as a Kennedy Center Honoree, President Barack Obama mentioned going to see Blazing Saddles (1974) at the age of 13. When Brooks asked how he got in with the ratings restriction, the president replied, “I think I had a fake ID,” before adding, “The statute of limitations has passed.”

    blazing_saddles_brooks-Tiki Chris Pinto riding into the sunset in a big black Cadillac, from Tiki Lounge Talk

  • Happy Mother’s Day from Tiki Lounge Talk

    Posted on May 9th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto No comments

    To all the Mothers out there, past, present and future, Happy Mother’s Day. May your cup runneth over with rum.

  • “Murder on Tiki Island” – A New Novel in the Works!

    Posted on May 8th, 2010 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 3 comments

    Tiki Bar Talk at Tiki Lounge Talk I’m officially announcing that I’m working on a new murder mystery/ghost story, aptly entitled “Murder on Tiki Island.”

    Since getting a great response and nice reviews on “Murder Behind the Closet Door,” I’ve decided to go on with another story idea I’ve had. This one takes place in 1956, and features Detective Bill Riggins from MBTCD, back when he was a young detective on the NYC vice squad. It also swings back to 1935, the action taking place on a little private island tiki-torchesoff the Florida Keys, Tiki Island. I don’t want to give too much away, but I can tell you it will have that Noir feel of the old 50s murder mysteries, and will include some kool era stuff, from the Overseas Railway to the music of time, slinky dames, seedy bars, Tiki torches and Mai Tais. Tiki lovers, you’re going to dig how I weave original early and mid-century Tiki Culture into the plot. Retro lovers, you’ll dig the Mike Hammer-style action, cars, women and grit.

    “Murder on Tiki Island” is in the baby stages right now. With any luck, it’ll be ready in about a year. But just for fun I’ll give you kats and kittens updates as it goes, and will even post a few paragraphs now and then to get your opinions!

    Thanks for stopping by the Tiki Bar and digging the kool stuff we talk about. Catch a copy of Murder Behind the Closet Door online at or on

    -Tiki Chris Pinto, aka Mack, from the Tiki Bar