Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Severed Arm

The Severed Arm Directed by Thomas S. Alderman Starring Marvin Kaplan. (1973).
    The premise for this tedious revenge flick is something out of an E.C. Comic. The surprise ending has a dash of poetic justice and just desserts (Man I’m getting hungry).
    The story involves a group of spelunkers (I’d say miners but they casually decide to venture underground and don’t know what the hell they are doing)! After a couple of minutes they get trapped, as the haggard looking men grow increasingly weary, they even seem to age and start to resemble a Lon Chaney werewolf stop motion transformation. All of these dimwits agree to draw straws to see which man becomes their raw meat cannibal lunch. They heat up a hunting knife and pin down the unlucky loser! This scenario reminded me of a South Park in which the teachers all decide after starving for a few seconds they want to cannibalize Eric Roberts! They get rescued in few minutes (talk about jumping the gun!) and all make it out safe and sound, accept for one bitten and confused former friend, whom with good reason becomes estranged from the rest of the civilian cannibals.
     Later tons of boring shit happens to the rest of the group, only Marvin Kaplan is interesting to me and the main reason to watch it! I recognized him from two things- Alice (He’s always bitching about Vera!) and as the molesting uncle in Wild At Heart. In Severed Arm, he plays a poseur Wolfman Jack named Mad Man Herman and the guy is still around working today doing cartoon voices and bit parts on TV shows. One by one each member of the cannibal club are murdered by an unseen villain (who we think we know, but like on MTV’s Cribs we have no idea)! His children (a son and daughter) look as if they run a deranged children’s show and lead the last victim into a trap.I could see a bit of the precursor to the Saw torture porn franchise hinted at (but let’s not go there). It’s very slow and a little dull, but worth checking out just for the grisly ending and the hammy acting.
   Some of the head scratching films in the Deep Red catalog including this one, Ruby, Hypnotic Eye, Flesh Feast, Horrors of The Black Museum seem to not fit in with everything else, they are another form of trash all together. They are out of league with all the gore films of Italian, Asian and Spanish horror films. This one is a lot more fun then the other bores, but I often wonder why some of these rotten eggs are among the good ones. Watch over at

So I'll be out in time to watch Matlock?
Mad Man Herman speaking

Heatin up some Hot Lunch