Sunday, May 1, 2016

The Fan /Der Fan aka Trance

-Reviewed by Skunkape-
aka Trance Directed by Eckhart Schmidt (1982)
When seeking out horror movies and other types of twisted cinema, a film with a title like "The Fan" isn't going to jump out of the bunch. TOG's main man Erok Hellhammer insisted that I dig it up in his never ending quest to cover all the films in the Deep Red catalog(s) and in doing so that's when I recognized the name Eckhart Schmdt. I reviewed a film of his called The Loft a while back not realizing that he had more goodies to offer.  It's a word of mouth film for sure and that's why I'm writing this. I can't recommend it enough and Mondo Macabre USA has just released a Blu/DVD version that will knock your socks off.
"Bitch better not download my music for free!"

Eckhart Schmidt started out as a writer, an artist, and a musician. His next logical move was to combine these elements and start making films. The Fan has a very simple story about hero worship but Schmidt's eye for detail escalated it into the cult classic that it is today. A young girl named Simone is obsessed with a pop star named 'R'. She can't concentrate in school and harasses all the local post men because she's waiting for 'R' to respond to all her fan letters. Finally she decides to leave home and stand outside the studio where 'R' is shooting his next big music video. Everyday this NDW God points to a cutie and brings her inside to see the production. It's pretty safe to assume he's just another egotistical musician that dazzles the girls with his stardom and then takes advantage of them-sexually  ;).
Simone (Desiree Nosbusch) finally gets 'R' 's attention while listening to his music outside the building, her fantasy is finally being fulfilled, or is it? Is she special or just another groupie bitch? 'R' is played by Bodo Steiger and the movie showcases the music from his own electro/new wave band Rheingold. The catchy pop songs work well in the film serving as the soundtrack, it's what Simone is actually listening to in her headphones and it's the music 'R' shoots a music video to. The video is shot with 'R' and a bunch of mannequins in total 80's fashion. The two seem to be connecting and she is invited back to see more on a daily basis.

"Anyone want their boobs signed?"
"We got it all on UHF!"
Mannequins courtesy of Joe Spinell. 
Finally the big night is about to happen, 'R' takes Simone to a friend's empty mansion and the two make love or fuck, depending on whose perspective were talking about. 'R', thinking that he has made this young girl's dream come true is now ready to move on.  He basically says, "thanks for the sex now take a hike", in the nicest way possible. Here comes the bat shit crazy parts of the movie (spoilers) , Simone smacks him in the head with a blunt statue killing her idol! Hey, if she can't have him, nobody can, right? He's then chopped up and becomes Simone's dinner. The leftover bones are grinded up into a fine powder and instead of making the remains into a protein shake they're taken to the recording studio where the two first met. She scatters the bone powder on the sidewalk where other fans watch in confusion. It's all done in a very surreal way and I kinda feel bad for the guy, I mean this chick is nuts! In the end it just goes to show you that these larger than life celebrities we worship are just regular ol' dooche bags. (with the exception of Werner Herzog of course) :)

"I'm going to Husker DU you!"
Don't get Boogers on the mirror!
Whacked with Crack!
This film has other layers too, such as how we worship God in our own religions and the way Germany worshiped Hitler. Schmidt asks the question, did the people of Germany create Hitler or was Hitler just that good? Did he actually fool an entire country in his rise to power?
Don't take my word for it though, on the Mondo Macabre USA Blu/DVD there is a 20 minute interview with this intriguing director. He also talks about a brilliant trick he pulled on the censorship board to get the film released uncut.
Despite all the negative reviews from German critics, the film was hit. The star, Desiree Nosbusch was big at the time and when the film was released she actually sued the director to have two scenes cut from film. This controversy helped sell more tickets along with Rheingold's musical success. The band had 3 songs from the soundtrack on the German single charts, Dreiklangsdimensionen was 17 and two others landed at numbers #24 and #44.

It's the New Wave Slicer! Just 9.99! 
This musician's career really crumbled, he-he!

9/10 on the CULT-O-METER
Don't let the boring title trick you into thinking this movie doesn't offer the goods. It's an Artsy and Horrific movie with the a great new wave soundtrack that serves as a nice little time capsle of the music emerging from that era. Yet, the film doesn't feel dated at all for some reason! 
Will there be a remake? Probably not, but I would love to see a fan kill Justin Beiber and make him into some delicious Canadian Bacon!

and don't forget to Follow me @TrailersPU on Twitter!
Theater of Guts on Twitt -       @Filmguts 


"Michael Meyers, is that you? Are you a Fan too?"

I am!

Check out Some 'R' !


  1. Loved this movie! I bought the DVD just based on the trailer haha. I unfortunately have no use for the Blu Ray :P

    1. Very Cool, Just got another one of Schmidt's films called Alpha City.
      Hold on to the Blu, maybe one day you'll splurge on a new player!

  2. the epic return of Skunkape! nice job pal


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