Thursday, December 1, 2011

Movie Review: Chillerama


I have been dying to see Chillerama ever since I heard about it a few months ago. The movie involves two of my favorite horror directors, Adam Green and Joe Lynch, and I figured that it must be awesome. So, I rushed out to buy it on Tuesday so that I could devour all of its campy, b-movie goodness. However, after viewing, I wasn't as pleased as I thought I was going to be with the film, and I'm a little upset that I spent my last $20 to purchase it.

The movie's plot is as follows: Cecil B. Kaufman's last drive-in in America is having one final, all-night horror movie extravaganza. Kaufman presents audiences with rare horror films that no one has seen before, including: Wadzilla, I was a Teenage Werebear, The Diary of Anne Frankenstein, and Zom-B-Movie. Along with the films on the screen, we get to know some of the audience who are in their cars watching the cheesefest.

Wadzilla, directed by Adam Rifkin, was the first movie to be shown in the anthology. The tale's plot is funny, ridiculous, and super disgusting. The story begins with Miles (Rifkin), a helpless slug who was denied entrance to a sperm bank and sent to a urologist instead. Miles meets Dr. Weems (played by the awesome Ray Wise of Reaper) who gives him a new, experimental drug that will help strengthen his weak sperm. However, once Miles begins taking the medication, it reacts in a way that he and Dr. Weems never could have imagined.

You see, whenever Miles gets aroused, a terribly sharp pain shoots through his testicles. When he goes back to the doctor he discovers that the pain is actually his sperm growing to tremendous size! Ick. Do I really want to watch a movie about sperm? No. But, I did anyway because the story was humorous...but it did make me squeamish.

Weems tells Miles that the only way to prevent the sperm from growing is to...masturbate. Only, it wasn't presented in those words. So, Miles figures that he will be okay and decides to go on a date with the beautiful Louise (Sarah Mutch). Um, bad idea guy. We all know that something bad will follow this because clearly Miles gets aroused at EVERYTHING; all he needs to do is get a glimpse of boobs and boom--he's got a boner. Really? Is that really how it works? Thank god, I'm not a guy.

Anyway, Miles gets the sharp pain in his balls and rushes to Louise's bathroom to choke his chicken and ends up unleashing a monster-size sperm from his penis. The sperm manages to get loose, grow larger, and take over New York like Godzilla.

Now, the movie is obviously meant to be ridiculous and awful, which it most definitely was, however; there was too much sperm (I'm going to keep calling it sperm because I'm a classy lady) for my liking. The segment was a parody of classic monster films of the '50's and Rifkin did do a good job at creating that atmosphere. But, why did he have to make it about killer sperm?!

It was funny and it did have its moments, plus, it was a creative idea that I've never seen before so I'll give props to Rifkin for that. This story wasn't completely unworthy of watching but I wouldn't say that it was totally amazing either. It was a great satire on films of that time though and there were some hilarious performances by Wise, Eric Roberts, and Lin Shaye.

The next segment in the anthology is Tim Sullivan's, I was a Teenage Werebear. The one word that comes to mind when I think of this movie is: GAY. It literally is really gay. The movie takes place in '60's California and follows a sexually-confused jock named Ricky (Sean Paul Lockhart). Ricky falls in love with a guy named Talon, the leader of a "Greaser"-type gang at his school. Talon bites Ricky in the ass, essentially giving him the curse of being a Werebear, and musical madness ensues.

I don't know if it's my hatred for Sullivan or the vast amounts of butt-sex that was shown, but I really didn't like this movie. It was spoofing Grease and Twilight and I feel like audience's have seen this before. Except, with all the added anal-action. I have no problem with the gayness of the movie, or the musical aspect of it, but I felt like Sullivan was just shoving it down our throats, desperately trying to be funny. Uh, you're not funny Sullivan and I don't even consider you a horror director; your movies are crap. I'm sorry for the rant but really, Sullivan needs to get lost. Why was he even in this film?

I mean, haven't we seen enough of the Twilight spoofs? It's not funny anymore, and there have been much better ones done than Werebear. I was so bored with this story that I couldn't even finish it, so, I guess it's not fear that I review it. But, I am. It sucked.

After watching the awfulness that was Werebear, my love, Adam Green saved me with his segment, The Diary of Anne Frankenstein. This section, which is shot in black and white and filled with subtitles, follows the story of Hitler (Joel David Moore) who finds the diary of Anne Frankenstein after his soldiers discover the Frank's hiding in the attic. The diary explains how to bring one back to life and Hitler soon produces his monster: Meshugganah. (Kane Hodder).

This story takes a hilarious look at the sensitive topic of WW2 and the reign of Hitler. Moore plays the fuhrer as a gibbering idiot who seems to make no sense while Kristina Klebe (2007's Halloween) plays his sex-crazed wife, Eva. I thought that the performances by both stars were hilarious and a breath of fresh air. When I originally saw Klebe in Halloween, I didn't think she was very good, however; my opinion of her was changed once I saw her in this movie.

Hitler's Frankenstein-like monster ironically comes out looking like a Jewish Rabbi and when he realizes what Hitler is doing, he fights back, killing all of the Nazi's. There is a scene where the monster body-slams one of the soldiers onto a table and we see that the person who lands on the table is a black man, rather than the white man that was actually thrown. The movie has a grindhouse feel to it and Green made the effort to show mistakes in the film, as were often seen in movies of that time.

This segment was a fresh take on the Hitler-era and it was actually pretty funny without being too insensitive to the topic. The movie was a great spoof of the Frankenstein-type film and surprisingly, it lacked blood, which Green usually is generous about. This segment was really smart and clever and it reminded me of why I love Green so much; he really knows what he's doing and he knows how to be funny. Take note, Sullivan.

What follows this section is a little hard to explain. Joe Lynch's, Zom-B-Movie is actually not one of the movies that Kaufman is showing on the big screen. Instead, it follows the audience who have been sitting in their cars, slowly turning into zombies along the way.

So, I need to backtrack a bit and go back to the beginning of Chillerama to explain: The movie starts with a guy who digs up his wife's grave in order to get "dead head" and this results in her coming back to life, biting his penis off, and infecting him with a zombie virus. Yes, this is for real.

The guy is an employee at Kaufman's Drive-in and he spreads the virus by masturbating (Don't you just love that word?) into a can of butter which is used on the popcorn. The popcorn is obviously sold to the movie patrons who then consume it and eventually become infected themselves. By the end of the three films that Kaufman has shown, the entire parking lot is full of horny-zombies. That's right; I said horny zombies.

Ugh, really? Why can't they just be regular zombies?

Anyway, these zombies are not like regular zombies. In fact, they are far from regular zombies. Rather than being consumed with eating the flesh of others, they are consumed with having sex with anything that they can find. Mr. Lynch, zombies don't want to have sex, but I digress.

In the end, it is all up to the final two kids, Tobe (Corey Jones) and Mayna(Kaili Thorne), to save the day. Only, there's too many zombies and they decide to have sex instead. I guess the message of this segment was supposed to be, "F#ck you, Hollywood", as Lynch and the other directors discuss while watching Chillerama in the theater at the end of the film. I guess it was a movie within a movie?

Overall, I feel like this movie was made by guys for guys. There was too much sex, and I know that usually comes with the territory with campy horror movies, however; I think that it was overkill. The only story that I really liked was The Diary of Anne Frankenstein which could have been a movie all on its own. What Lynch did with the zombies, making them sex-crazed rather than flesh-crazed was different, but it was too much for me. I don't know, I guess I'm just a boring girl but I didn't buy the movie to be drowned in sexual innuendos and references the entire time.

The movie wasn't entirely bad and if you have a dirty mind, you will absolutely love it. It was clever and at certain times funny, but it just wasn't for me. If you are a fan of classic drive-in movies, you should definitely rent it and see what you think. It was no Creepshow, that's for sure.

2 comments:

Aaron said...

I was shocked by how much I enjoyed this one. I'm not a big fan of Adam Green or Joe Lynch, and figured it was gonna be a throwaway movie for them (which it essentially is), but I had an absolute blast watching it. My only major complaint would be the Werebear section, which was pretty awful. But I really dug everything else... especially Adam Green's Frankenstein segment, mostly because of how much that one actor chewed up the scenery. Anyway, just discovered your blog and am looking forward to more of your posts. Keep up the good work.

Amanda said...

thank you, thank you. Yeah, I didn't completely hate this one but I didn't love it either. It looks like we agree on both the Werebear section and the Frankenstein one. I HATED the Werebear story!

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