Sunday, March 11, 2012

Garrett Also Loves Trash: Garrett favorite and least favorite trashy films

I had a hard time narrowing it down to four trashy films as well, but I stand by the four I picked. They're pretty damn trashy.

Maniac (1934)

Learning about mental illness can be fun! Especially when the person you're learning about it from is almost certainly fucking certifiable themselves. This movie is supposed to be about the dangers of mental illness, alerting people of these dangers so that umm...I that they don't opt to go crazy. Like Prince did after writing the song of the same name.Dwain Esper's 1934 film Maniac tells us about mental illness by introducing us to a wide variety of utterly bugfuck individuals. Like the untalented vaudevillian who makes his living as a mad scientist's assistant. Like the mad scientist himself who wants to prove his artificial heart works by telling the vaudevillian to let him shoot him so that he can bring him back to life. The mad scientist by the way, is played by the worst actor in the history of acting. Horace Carpenter, the actor who played the mad scientist had to have actually been mad to believe that what he was doing on screen was actually acting. It might be the worst acting ever, and I don't hand out such accolades lightly. The vaudevillian decides to kill and impersonate the scientist, and ends up encountering a variety of other crazy people ostensibly shown to demonstrate what mental illness does to people. Like how it makes guys think they're sex crazed apes and forces them to kidnap naked women or how it makes two women get into syringe fights or causes actors to hallucinate scenes from Haxan. Maniac is a truly trashy film and about as educational as Shark Night 3D. I love Maniac so much.


This movie is what would happen if John Waters decided to remake Videodrome. And then ate some bad shrimp before bed and edited his dreams into the dailies. Terrorvision is oozing with familial dysfunction, neglect, pop culture criticism and weird sexuality. The characters are all ridiculous caricatures. The antagonist is a garbage disposal from space beamed in via a funky satellite dish. Or is the antagonist child neglect or our media obsessions? Any of these are valid. It's smart, nasty, sci fi trash of the highest caliber. This movie is just great.

The Gore Gore Girls

What's trashier than strippers? Dead strippers, that's what. A "classy" private detective is hired by a trashy reporter to investigate murdered strippers. These strippers are murdered by meat tenderizer, scissors and having their faces fried. But this is not a typical slasher movie. This is an H.G Lewis movie. Lewis loves and exalts in gore, has no reason to scare you and came from a background in softcore pornography. He was a big influence on John Waters. So, if you're into trash, check out one of its progenitors and masters. This movie combines gore, surrealism and crazy humor in ways you just can't find anymore. Outside of a good Bizarro novel.

Visitor Q

What if incest was magic and God was reality television? Takashi Miike has done some mean things to his audiences. But Visitor Q is the meanest thing he's ever done and I'm grateful for it. Like Terrorvision, Visitor Q deals with uncomfortable sexuality, child neglect and the negative power of media to transform our consciousness, unlike Terrorvision, it also deals with necrophilia, excrement's efficacy as lube and the magic of lactation (which Gore Gore Girls only touches upon briefly). And unlike Terrorvision, this movie is a spiritual journey into the most rotten parts of ourselves and into the disintegration of the family unit. Dysfunction breaks down the family and we're left watching and wondering what will come in its place. There are no easy answers but Miike's is pure poetry. Obviously, this not for the squeamish, obviously this is the kind of Grade A trash that makes me proud to be a cult cinema aficionado and Bizarro author. Visitor Q is in my opinion, the greatest trashy movie of all time.

Least Favorites

Every Biker Movie

Werewolves on Wheels! Psychomania! She Devils on Wheels! The Glory Stompers! The Peacekillers! Biker movies should be awesome. They have such intense titles and bikers are some bad dudes. But I expected more from this genre. I expected it to be gorier, sexier and deadlier than any other film genre. I expected angels of death and mostly I get hooligans and casual nuisances. I want Edward Lee from biker movies and I get Wes Craven. Maybe it's just a matter of personal preference, maybe it's the genre, I don't know. The Werewolves on Wheels are barely on wheels as lycanthropes. The zombie bikers in Psychomania don't look like zombies. The Peacekillers don't do all that much damage to those hippies. The She Devils are among H.G Lewis' least weird and violent villains. Fuck you, every biker movie. You broke my heart.

Naked Massacre

Speaking of broken hearts, this movie is dead to me. I'm almost angry about deriding it because it means dignifying it with a reply. But I must raise the alarm lest somebody else become the broken hollow sad shell of a man this movie turned me into. Naked Massacre sounds like the most id driven, overstimulating funfest you can watch. It sounds dirty and exciting and more fun than a barrel of naked ladies who get massacred. This is instead the story of a sad Vietnam veteran who holds a bunch of nurses hostage in Ireland. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out what to do with a movie called Naked Massacre, but somehow the dipshits that made this movie couldn't do it. Step 1: Nudity. Step 2: Massacre. It's not hard, guys.


  1. Looks like I need to finally sit down and watch Terrorvision. Great article!

  2. Terrovision's a lot of fun. And weird enough for most Bizarro fans.

  3. I've just downloaded iStripper, so I can watch the sexiest virtual strippers strip-tease on my desktop.