Tuesday, April 7, 2015

The Psychopath

(ad taken from http://templeofschlock.blogspot.com/)

The Psychopath (An Eye for an Eye) Directed By Larry G. Brown, Starring Tom Basham (1973).

This film is legendary in the grindhouse circuit, experts like Bill Landis (who mentioned its effectiveness in Sleazoid Express) and Rick Sullivan were completely weirded out by it, I guarantee you will be too! Gore Gazette head honcho Sullivan described Tom Basham, who plays the demented kiddie show host as "without a doubt one of the sickest cookies he's ever seen on film and his retarded performance is the sole reason to brave the sticky scum ridden floors of the Selwyn theater to catch this mutant." 

Years later, Joe Spinell in a drugged out haze or drunken stupor (who knows for sure) "borrowed" this concept for another legendary short film Maniac 2 : Mr. Robbie directed by Buddy G. I love that short film and am not implying that Spinell owes anything to the 1973 original, I mean ideas are floating around in the ether and should be utilized in such a creative way, right? If anything, it brings attention to this rare film designed for weirdos only. 
Spinell as Mr. Robbie (not Rabbey)!

What I love about this movie is that it clearly wants---even demands that you take your family along and and learn something from this deranged cautionary tale! Otherwise, why the fuck would they rate it PG? People's faces are smashed in with baseball bats, children discharge firearms, more faces are assaulted by lawnmovers  and gleeful carnage is doled out (but all implied to hover under the radar of showing actual gore or nudity). Just check out how this rare ad up top celebrates murder! 

EEEEK! It's Mr. Rabbey!

The production quality is total shit and the sleazy vibe is on par with I Dismember Mama, so lets all dive into this slime pit of abusive parents and vigilante puppet wielding justice!
It opens with some Hard Days Night credits font and two strange looking parents who cant wait to beat their child into submission. The fat mother has an afro and looks like a white Shirley Hemphill from What's Happening! The radio news mentions that some unsolved murders concerning missing parents have been occurring--hmm I wonder who may be responsible? 

from the all Caucasian version of What's Happening (or What's The Dilly-Yo?)

Meanwhile a Scorsese looking Kiddie Show director is bitching at Mr. Rabbey (Tom Basham), who looks sort of like Anthony Perkins in a Moe Howard wig. He also reminds me of Stuart, this Mad TV character with excessive pancake makeup on played by Michael Mcdonald.   

Man child Stuart, seems very much influenced by this film

As Mr. Robbey peddles his frustrations away on his ten speed (shades of PW Herman), we hear a fake "Stairway to Heaven" song, which just about caused me and Skunkape to spit beer all over the keyboard from laughing. The 70's were so demented, this "fun for the whole family" flick makes it seem as though sadistic parents are everywhere spanking their kids, just asking to be slaughtered. 

My close personal friend Francis Coppola is gonna hear about this

Some of the dumbest cops show up, one of them is played by non other than Beverly Hills Cop balding officer Taggart (played by John Ashton). This is actually his first role, he would later play this identical cop character throughout his entire career. 

Where's my buddy Judge Reinhold, or Axel Foley? 

Mr. Rabbey, who is so incredibly creepy, goes to visit sick kids in the hospital (shades of Patch Adams, man The Psychopath spawned so many copy cats, right)? Or maybe I'm totally wrong. 

Martin Short as Clifford in The Burning

One seemingly catatonic kid named Jefferson, who was abused makes the same exact face every time they show him. At his house later on next to his parents, I expected his features to be frozen in that exact pose! 

HELP, my face got stuck like this!

There's this really inappropriate drum beat and funk bass line that shows up periodically (Hey chalk it up to the 70's again) as they zoom in on Mr. Rabbey's eyeballs. The manchild, stalks the fat mother and smashes her face in with a baseball bat! Directly after down at the TV studio he plays a maudlin tune on the piano and weeps like the emotionally unbalanced creep he is in the dark.  

Cue that funky Seinfeld bassline!
Next, he hangs out with his producer/mother (who knows?) and eats his favorite treat CHOCOLATE CAKE! 

Basham's performance comes off like a perverted Anthony Perkins with brain damage. During the table scene, they give him the same eerie eyelights like Angelica Huston in The Addams Family movies. The authority figures in this film are totally clueless and take up space (their scenes add up to little or nothing). 

What do you mean we're out of chocolate cake?

He calls his producer/ manager, again hasn't really been established "Mommy" and they look to be about the same age. This is one of the shortest, most satisfying creep-fests in recent memory, even though the cops threaten to drag the film down, it's still totally captivating on so many levels! For one, who was this film made for, the tone suggests comedy, but there's nothing funny at all going on, it's bleak and unintentionally campy. It makes you feel dirty and yet it's all presented in a sunny daylight, just before the finale, when it gets real dark. Just an incredibly weird oddity that demands to be re-released, Come on Vinegar Syndrome, this one is calling your name, do it right now!  

You made a wrong turn at Jack in the Box Skip!

BUY HERE  (Available from J4HI.COM) 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...