Sunday, February 28, 2010


Okay. This movie raised a lot of questions. Mostly questions like "What in the hell?" and "Why is this happening?" Let's take it from the top.

Gums is a pornographic parody of Jaws. Except instead of a great white shark, there's a mermaid who kills men via fellatio. Except that she's not much of a mermaid. She's got legs, for one thing. The top-billed character is played by Brother Theodore, who is hilariously crazy. He's also mostly incomprehensible. The whole movie's incomprehensible. At one point, the scientist character (who does, in fact, look and sound a little like Richard Dreyfus) goes to the wrong house. A voice from inside tells him the address he wants is across the street. Then we cut inside the house to see one dog mounting another. Just before the audience goes blind with horror, we cut back to the scientist knocking on the door of a house that clearly has the wrong address.

There were three jokes in the movie that I liked. And I'm pretty sure these were all on purpose.

JOKE THE FIRST: The deputy is seen apparently riding in a parade, but then the camera pulls back to reveal he's just standing up in his jeep and waving to people for no reason.

JOKE THE SECOND: The mayor has a comically large tie.

JOKE THE THIRD: Brother Theodore's master plan at the end of the movie involves Hitler's genitals. But the guy in the burlap sack insists that he's not even Hitler. And he's right: this guy is clearly not Hitler. He tries to go along with it for a minute or so, but finally has to insist that he's just a guy that Brother Theodore stuffed into a sack. I enjoyed that bit, because it was appealingly random.

The rest of this movie doesn't make a bit of sense. For one thing, why, if it's porn, is all the sex concealed behind poorly-drawn underground-comix-style illustrations? Why are two of the characters replaced by puppets for the last five minutes? What was with the vulture?

Anyway, it was a weird, weird movie. Exactly the sort of thing you want to see in a late-night show at a local art hose theater packed with people enjoying themselves, and that's how I did see it. Plus, it's barely over an hour long, so I could still get home and go to sleep. I appreciate that.

It did make me happy by providing another sighting of the Panic in New York; Menagerie Breaks Loose headline. Incidentally, I'm pretty sure I've figured out what the deal is with that. But I'll explain it in a different post.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Wolfman

Well ... it's definitely a wolfman movie. It's got an aged gypsy fortune teller (who should really have been played by Adrienne Barbeau), frightened villagers, people getting killed on the moors, a lot of shots of the full moon, and an angry mob waving torches. I don't know why they're not waving pitchforks, because we see them lying around in the village earlier.

There's a spot where I think we're supposed to object to the idea of Lawrence Talbot being killed. However, at that point, he's already offed twenty or so villagers, along with a handful of scientists and at least a few Londoners. Frankly, even if he had somehow gotten cured of the werewolfism, he's still got to be brought down somehow. No one's going to say, "Well, you weren't quite yourself when you decimated the Royal Academy of Sciences so we'll let you off. Don't do it again!"

There were some things I liked. I enjoyed Anthony Hopkins as the amused father, although it was largely the same role he played in The Mask of Zorro. It helps that I enjoyed that movie a lot. I liked that Rick Baker was in charge of the werewolf effects. There was CGI, yes, but there was a lot of footage of "a guy in a wolfman suit". And it looked like a proper wolfman. The two stages are "man" and "wolfman", not "man" and "wolf". It's a little thing, but it's important.

I also always kind of enjoy exceedingly blatant sequel hooks. And I suppose this is a spoiler, but I would totally go see Inspector Abberline: Werewolf Detective.