Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Night Warning

Night Warning (Butcher Baker Nightmare Maker) Directed by William Asher. Starring Susan Tyrell (1982)
   Susan Tyrell plays one of the most domineering incestuous, maniacal mother figures in Butcher Baker Nightmare Maker (or Night Warning). As much as Indiana Jones has a seething hatred for snakes, this film has a venomous hatred for gays! It's so offensively homophobic that instead of ending up on the dreaded video nasty list, it should have been sent to the Gay and Lesbian task force for crimes against humanity! It's that severe!
    Susan Tyrell sort of reprises this role of deranged mother years later in Buddy Boy as a domineering amputee to a psychotic son. Her child is really an orphan, who's parents leave him in her custody and die in a horrible accident (within the first couple of minutes of the film). Their brakes were suspiciously cut!, so is there a secret motive of murder? all will be revealed later...
   Jimmy McNichol (Kristy's identical brother, I mean they have the same "Farrah" do) plays Billy, the unfortunate victim to insane Aunt Cheryll (Susan Tyrell). Her irrational plan is to ruin his basketball scholarship and keep him confined to her house. She achieves this by coming on to some Beach Boys looking lurid character, accuse him of rape and then brutally stabs him to death. 

     When the police (played by Bo Svenson and Britt Leach) find him they spout dialogue like "the poor guy didn't even get his pecker out" and Bo says "lady I don't give a shit what you do". Two loveable neighbors (who have to suffer and pretend they like her pickled tomatoes!) come over for Billy's birthday find the victim dead.
     This film has a John Waters feel (later on Tyrell would star as Ramona Rickets in Cry Baby) or Bad Ronald and doesn't merit the dreaded "Video Nasty" moniker, even though it was banned in Britain. When Susan Tyrell is accused of being a lesbian by Svenson, her and the homophobic son go "You're sick!".
Bo keeps hanging out at the school gym and threatens to lynch the basketball coach for some odd reason (because he's gay???).
    Susan talks to a picture that looks like Larry Dallas (from Three's Company) that she built a shrine around. Bill Paxton accuses Billy of being gay, they get into a fight and Bo Svenson calls Billy a "Fag" over and over again. Svenson is one of the most unwanted corrupt cops incessantly threatening to break arms and comes off extremely homophobic (as does everyone in this movie)! It turns out the coach is gay and the way everyone handles it or talks about it, "like its a disease" is very tasteless. 

    This is a rare exploitative film that gay bashes, but I gather everyone is fair game in this kind of film genre.  The crime rate must be sky high in that town if cops like Bo and Leach are incessantly questioning everyone whether they are gay or not (in their minds gay=criminal). It's ridiculously offensive! 
    Aunt Cheryll won't let up and poison's Billy's milk and cookies(more than once) in an effort to sabotage his chances at a scholarship.She says things like "Don't go back to that school it's crawling with perverts!" and cuts all her hair off, going increasely more bananas! 
     She confides in the twerpy Larry Dallas (Chuck Strang) picture for all her problems and that it's their divine plan to keep him home forever (he's 17 years old). 

     This movie goes out of its way to promote intolerance in the same way "Fight For Your Life" uses a multicultural street gang to attack a religious black family. It does it to get under your skin, but its very jarring and unexpected. The police are the worse offenders, but Billy and Aunt Cheryll aren't any better, which makes them all very sleazy.She's a horrible cook (she can't pickle a tomato for shit and she dumps poison in the milk)!William Asher (Bewitched, The Frankie and Anette Beach Party movies!) is responsible for this Oedipus inspired mess!
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1 comment:

  1. Quirky fun-fact: Jimmy McNichol appears shirtless seven times during this movie.


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