Sunday, January 27, 2013

Oily Maniac

Oily Maniac Directed By Meng Hua Ho Starring Danny Lee (1976).
         It starts off with a murky sewage covered behemoth erupting from an oil slick while a credit montage of monkeys climb up trees and hurl coconuts in Malaysia. This is not the usual Shaw Brothers fare, it’s more of a rubber monster movie with some nudity and it’s a blast! The Yang Clan, a bunch of hawaiian shirt wearing thugs are trying to muscle in on a deed for an inherited Coconut Oil factory. The deed was given to Mr. Sheung a man crippled by polio who is the anti-hero of our feature tonight.
         His Uncle Ah Ba gets captured and sent to death row but has a secret for Fu Sheung (played by Danny Lee), a Malay spell that will transform him into a hulking avenger who must do right or suffer consequences worse then death. Shueng’s corrupt boss Mr. Hu is responsible for all the shitty things in his life and like all villains in this flick, they will soon end up monster mashed!         
         After getting drunk one night he finds the magic spell, which tells him to dig a hole in the middle of the floor in his living room. Once he journeys beneath a pool of sludge, he transforms into the oily monster (or maniac). His uncle's daughter is almost attacked, but he stops them in the form or a chroma keyed puddle that sluices in unsuspected. There's a random rape trial that interrupts the flow alittle then it goes back to Uncle Ah Ba's daughter, who Shueng is pining for. She doesn't love him and he’s pissed off and believes that she rejects him just because he's crippled. He has a chip on his shoulder about having to walk on crutches and takes out vengeance through his monster incarnation and half the time it’s unmerited rage.
          When he becomes the creature, a similar theme to Jaws is heard and he can even fill up at a gas station and transform.         
           Shueng really flies off the handle and jumps to conclusions and kills before thinking (he strangles a random girl in the bathtub). Later on, he overhears about a botched surgery and mistakenly breaks into a vaginal rejuvenation doctor's operating room and kills everyone! Sheung is able to transform at will and always uses his powers for evil, which is what his uncle warned him not to do. Whenever he wants to turn into the oily maniac all he has to do is jump into a bucket of toxic grease. There is not much gore in this one for a Shaw Brothers flick, but it’s highly entertaining and worth checking out! The same director who made Black Magic and Mighty Peking Man helmed this one, think of it as the inspiration for The Toxic Avenger and a distant relative to Swamp Thing (who debuted in 1971).

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