Snapshot (aka The Day After Halloween, 1979)

The other great thing about the high quality shit you get here at B-Movie Enema is that Halloween is always a bonus episode.  So today, we’re getting back to our regular Friday stuff.

Here we are, one day after Halloween.  I know of at least 47 movies called “Halloween” starring some dude named Freddy Michael Jason Hellraiser.  I don’t know any movie ever called November First.   But I do know of a movie called Snapshot.

Which is also called One More Minute.

Which also goes by the title The Day After Halloween.

Well…  How’s about that?I guess this is where I am in my life now, dear readers.  I’m that asshole who is now specifically waiting around for a Friday that lands on November 1 so I could do the movie Snapshot because it has an alias of The Day After Halloween.  Sigh…  I’m a fucking loser, guys.

Don’t think so?  Allow me to prove you wrong.  For the most part, I download a calendar and I start planning out my movies for B-Movie Enema well in advance.  For example, I already know what I’m doing for the first three months of 2020.  But around, oh, January 20th, I was trying to sort out what I was going to do as the theme month for October.  Just between you and me, originally, my plan was to make October “Phantasm Month” since there are five of those movies and there were five spots for October (four Fridays and Halloween itself).

Knowing my normal Friday business was going to land on November 1st, I figured I needed some good ol’ Ozploitation and cover that other movie that I’ve seen starring the lovely, lovely Chantal Contouri from Thirst.  Oh and this time, she kinda wants to get some lady sex with the other cutie in this movie.  Double score!

Let’s not dawdle…  This movie is about Angela (Sigrid Thornton), who is a hairdresser and having some issues making ends meet, so she gets connected to a photographer looking for a model.  However, things go to the dumps when a psychotic admirer makes things even tougher for dear Angela.  So, here we go!

It should be stated that I’m watching the Vinegar Syndrome release of Snapshot from 2017.  It’s stated before the movie begins that this disc comes from negatives of the International Cut of the movie.  It was shown everywhere outside of Australia, and that this is the only known release of the movie named Snapshot.  The movie is actually best known to Australians as The Day After Halloween, or possibly that One More Minute title, and that’s what many will know it as.  That is actually a special feature on the disc as well.

Again, kudos as always to Vinegar Syndrome.

The movie begins with firemen going through a smokey building responding to a blazing fire.  It cuts to outside where…

It appears that town hired the local drunk to paint the street lines.  A very distraught Madeline (Contourri) comes screaming for Angela, but is restrained by the cops.  Inside, the firefighters find a flaming heap of bones!

SNAPSHOT!

As the investigators look at the scene, we hear some of the report about who the person was, what is in the house, and some stuff about film in a camera.  We also see that the walls and ceiling is plastered with repeating images of a girl (Angela) topless in the ocean for an ad campaign.

The editing cleverly plays out like a camera taking, heh, snapshots from that day in the ocean where she was modeling to a point in the past when Angela was still a struggling hairdresser hurrying to work.  She gets a dressing down from her boss.  However, her day gets better…  As does mine.  When the 70s porn music starts playing, enter Madeline Stover.  She’s a high class model in her own right.  She shows up early for her appointment with Angela, and demands the boss take over for the customer Angela is working on so she can take Madeline.

Madeline is very friendly with Angela.  She wants Angela to leave the hairdressing game and get into some advertising modeling.  Angela doesn’t think she’s model material.  Madeline convinces her that she needs to take the job so she can sock away more cash to go abroad for vacation.  Madeline even arranges it so that Angela can be fired so she has no choice but to go with her to see photographer, Linsey.

Madeline is basically the exact opposite from Angela.  She reminds Angela that her mom always says she’s plain and her boss always says she’s stupid.  This gives her a chance to take the bull by the horns and take charge of her life.  They meet with Linsey and he tells Angela that they are doing an ad for cologne and they will go to the beach the very next morning.  Angela finds out that she will be photographed topless and she’s nearly out.  However, Madeline tells her it is $1000 for a half day’s work.  That gets Angela on board.

When leaving, they spot the most deadly thing you can possibly ever see on the streets of an Australian town…  A pink ice cream truck!  It’s driven by Angela’s ex-boyfriend who follows her around and begs her to talk only to end up begging and crying, etc.

The next morning, Angela is on the beach with Madeline and Linsey to shoot some ad for cologne.  By the way, apparently Australia has topless ads in magazines and various other places where you’ll find companies trying to get your squinties on their products. But fuck that!  Check out Angela’s theme song!

Angela certainly shows her inexperience with being a model.  She doesn’t seem to quite know what to do with her top, her arms, her general body language.  Also, her tits are totally out in front of people who she doesn’t know.  However, she finally starts to pull it together.  And she delivers a shot that Linsey screams in excitement after developing the film…

At a nightclub, Angela goes to party while Madeline sits around and looks annoyed.  She watches as a guy, John, tries to pick up Angela.  Despite seemingly asking Angela to do a job, John doesn’t seem to be on the total up and up.  Madeline “rescues” Angela.  When they leave, they find that Madeline’s car has its window smashed out.

After getting dropped off by a taxi, Angela discovers that her mother has changed the locks on the door.  Like apparently that day.  Like one day, Angela is a hairdresser living with a shitty mom who calls her plain so she never has any real ambition of her own.  The next day, she gets a modeling job.  That night, she’s locked out… forever?  Daryl, Angela’s ex, tracks her down on the dark street and it is revealed that he has been talking to her mom and telling her what Angela’s been up to.  He then begs her to come home with him since she apparently has no home anymore – thanks to Daryl.

Daryl then asks if Angela is turning queer because she got a kiss goodnight, on the cheek, from Madeline.  What the actual fuck, man?  Like I get it…  You’re a total shit.  You have a face that looks someone wearing a catcher’s mask while someone throws balls of uncooked hamburger at it.  I kind of feel like it’s a bit aggressive to follow Angela around, and then confront her on a dark street, then call her a dyke.

Not cool, Daryl.

With no way to get back into her house, she shows up at Linsey’s who lets her crash there for as long as she needs or likes.  I should mention that Linsey’s a fucking weirdo too because we met him while he was taking pictures of a dead mouse.  He has a penchant for photographing dead things because, as he put it, “nobody else does.”  While he is weird, he is very sweet when thanking Angela for asking and seemingly caring about why he does that.

It’s also kind of sad when he gets excited to bring Angela a copy of a magazine in which her ad is in.  She sees it and while he is very proud of the work, Angela is upset that her face is showing.  While she is kind of having a small freak out about that, he just meekly asks if she doesn’t like it.  Even after she realizes what she’s done and asks if she can keep that copy of the magazine, he still seems kind of hurt by the whole thing.

This just shows you that even weirdos have low self esteem and can be hurt very easily.

Still, despite being nervous about her face being shown while she’s tits out in a national ad campaign, Angela is starting to get a little more confidence and self esteem herself.  Sigrid Thornton, who was nominated for an Australian Film Institute Award for Best Actress for this movie, is definitely downplayed as being very plain, and maybe even a little ugly.  She certainly holds that opinion of herself through most of the movie.  Even Daryl is trying to hold her to that low opinion of herself in order to keep her.   Yet, she is very cute.  Especially in contrast to Contouri’s Madeline, who is very posh and always seen with makeup and furs.  However, I would contend that if I was in a nightclub or a grocery store or what have you, I’d probably be more likely to want to talk to Angela and ask her out because she seems so much more down to earth.

Things are potentially getting dangerous for Angela.  She sets out a pretty dress to wear that day.  After coming upstairs after having breakfast with the others who live at Linsey’s studio, the dress has been cut up and shredded.  Left on the bureau next to it is a flower.

Later, Madeline introduces Angela to a movie director named Elmer.  While Madeline is initially pleased to introduce them, she seems to get a little more frustrated by Elmer asking Angela over to a party at his place.  Later, Angela comes home to find out that she will be on 400 billboards across the country.  She also finds out her mother is waiting for her in her room.  Her mother’s gone through her stuff, basically calls her a hooker for the money she has stashed away, and the tells her to never come home again.

Oh, and to boot, bitch took all of Angela’s $900 she hid in her bureau.

Angela goes to the party at Elmer’s only to find out there is no party.  Apparently, “Madeline had a job so we had to call it off” is what this old creep is going with to be alone with Angela.  Elmer offers Angela an acting gig.  He then fakes a call from Madeline so that it requires Angela to stay the night at his place where he proceeds to get her drunk.  He then starts asking her to take pictures – including nudes.  It doesn’t take long for Angela to realize what the hell is going on here.

This so-called party has gone from 0 to I-need-an-adult pretty quickly.

Angela takes a long, tearful train ride home.  She gets into her room, she sees a person sleeping in her bed.  After asking one of the girls she shares the living space with, Angela grabs some scissors and plans to stab that motherfucker playing Goldilocks in her room and fuck him up.  As it turns out, it is not a person, but a butchered pig’s head.

Madeline tells Angela there’s really not much the cops will do about the incident.  She asks Angela if she can put her up for a while.  Angela reveals that yeah, Elmer was indeed trying to get a look at dem tittaes, but Madeline says he probably would not have done anything else to her.  His movie offer is horseshit too.

After telling Madeline about Daryl, Madeline realizes that Angela hasn’t exactly had a great deal of positive exposure to sex.  Daryl was 27 when Angela met him.  Angela was 16.  Her mom was totally cool with all this because he was basically conservative-minded like she was.  It’s overall pretty gross.  So Madeline tells Angela that despite the strict upbringing she had, she was banging like a bunny the whole time.  It wasn’t until later she discovered she was “banging the wrong gong.”  Angela asks what that means, and Madeline shows her:

Hot.

This doesn’t go over all that well.  Angela says they will look like a couple old dykes which causes Madeline to leave quickly.  The next day, she goes to the hair salon she worked at to ask for her job back, but sees her little sister there.  She gets pissed that the story her mom told her about how they need money for medical bills for an accident her sister got in that nearly killed her is bullshit because there’s not a scratch on her.

Angela gets a job to go to Fiji.  When she tells Linsay and her other housemates, they don’t respond and barely acknowledge her.  She tells Madeline that she is leaving for Fiji who is legitimately happy for her but also warns that she might be trading in small problems for big ones.  Angela goes home to pack when she hears Daryl’s ice cream truck driving up.  As she’s leaving her room, it shows that there’s a picture of him on the bureau.  I guess he figured if he left a picture of his hamburgery mug, she’d miss him and want to take him back.

After a particularly hairy escape from Daryl, she ends up at Elmer’s production offices where she finds that he’s gone completely cuckoo for her and plastered her cologne ad all over one of his rooms.  He comes in and locks her inside.  He then takes pictures of her.  He tells her to take off her blouse, and starts snapping pictures before telling her to take off the rest of her clothes.

Alright so…  to make her take off the rest of her clothes, he starts a fire next to her and says that people will do just about anything to stay alive for just one more minute…  So that other title for this movie makes sense.  Daryl does prove himself useful by banging on the door and distracting Elmer so she can douse the old creep with some kerosene so he can catch on fire.  She eventually opens the door and Daryl helps her escape while the police and fire department come to check out the situation.  So we return to the beginning of the movie where the fire department is putting out the flames and Madeline arrives looking for Angela.

Meanwhile, Angela and Daryl slip off in his ice cream truck.  Angela has plans to leave it all behind and get on the plane for Fiji, but Daryl says he can’t let her leave.  She accuses him of putting a pig’s head into her bed, but as he is revealing that, yeah, he’s done some insane things, he didn’t do the pig head thing, he gets smashed by his own ice cream truck.  Madeline steps out and tells Angela she better hurry or she’ll miss her plane to Fiji.

Angela realizes that all the crazy stuff lately has been Madeline’s doing, but so what… Fiji!

This is a really strange movie.  While, technically, it is fairly straightforward.  Angela is kind of wrapped up in a world she wasn’t really prepared for or even really suited for.  Weird stuff happens around pretty girls, and so forth.  Sure.

Yet, I’m not entirely sure the movie quite handles its own message quite the way it wants.  Angela is essentially abused all her life.  She isn’t really in control of anything in her life.  Her mother is a terrible cunt.  Her ex-boyfriend sucks.  Her boss is horrible.  Madeline gets her fired so she has no choice to go on a modeling gig.

On the surface, the movie is kind of standard for 70s exploitation – the “little girl lost” trope.  Basically young women are itching to get out into the world, but the moment they step outside home or where they are best protected, they are immediately in trouble.  They get swept up into a world they can’t handle, they have guys practically throwing their dicks at them left, right, center, and back.  It almost tries to sell the audience on humdrum life is better than the great big, scary world.  It’s weird.

But let’s talk about these titles…

Looks like we, the Americans, are responsible for all these damn titles.  It’s even deeper than I thought.  Not only do we have The Day After Halloween and One More Minute, but we also have different times and different days for Halloween!  The Day Before, The Night After, no The…  It’s nuts.  If you want to know the power of a movie’s popularity, look no further.  The US was desperate for more Halloween.

Okay, Snapshot and One More Minute makes sense.  It is a snapshot that drives the guy crazy.  Crazy guy did say that people would do anything for one more minute.  But they make a specific reference in the movie that the photo shoot was done in the winter.  Why?  Ads for things that are summer-centric are done in the winter.  This is Australia – or at least the Australian part of Haddonfield, Illinois.  My point is that down under, “winter” is June 21 – September 20.  Unless Halloween in Australia is September 19 or 21, this title is incredibly cynical.  Just give those dumb kids another Halloween movie!  Idiots!

Before you say that I’m not being fair because many Italian movies tried to capitalize on a big American movie, but at least those have some of the same ideas… for the most part.  This isn’t even a slasher movie.  Only one person, for sure, died in this movie.  Daryl may not have died…?  He got fucked up, sure, but it was not shown that he actually died.

Generally, I do like this movie.  It is interesting in a sense of how the Australians dealt with that little girl lost theme.  Yet…  There is something seemingly off about the movie itself.  Even that bitchin’ Angela song by Sherbet even asks “Have you gone too far this time?”  Okay, that might be interesting.  What if Angela was so desperate to get away that she makes bad choices.  Give her some agency even if she often fails?  That would at least give some reason for her to be abused aside from, you know, simply existing?

Without some of that stuff, you’re not really giving much in between scenes of tense chills and some sexiness.  It’s missing a little bit of soul.  I’d say it does have some heart because Sigrid Thornton and Chantal Contouri are good in their roles.  Overall, it’s a fine little Ozploitation thriller in terms of making you interested in Angela, but don’t count on it being a true horror flick.

But that Angela song, tho…

Next week, we go to the other side of the world where we check back in with one Warren J. Norman.  This time, we get some alien action, as well as some more lesbian action with 1977’s Prey!

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