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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Monsturd: SE
Monsturd: SE
Image // R // February 3, 2004
List Price: $19.99 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by G. Noel Gross | posted March 9, 2004 | E-mail the Author
Buy from Amazon.com
C O N T E N T
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Highly Recommended
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CineSchlock-O-Rama

Pinch not your noses, dear CineSchlockers, because the rank ranks of sewer cinema has flushed forth an unexpected gem! Not unlike the enormous gators or the cannibalistic humanoid underground dwellers before it, this astonishingly quick witted and paced call-of-nature belies the muck of its setting with infectious glee and a resounding score. The writing/directing duo of Rick Popko and Dan West are clearly honored graduates of the Herschell Gordon Lewis school of filmmaking where NOTHING -- not acting, costumes, effects, sets, lighting or budget -- ever takes precedence over sheer entertainment value. This "ultimate impact" over aesthetics approach is cataclysmic in the ham fists of most amateur auteurs, but these fellas get it -- they can tell a story, they can make us laugh, they can make us puke AND they can do it with actors reading from scripts in plain sight! Not bad for a couple of moonlighting moviemakers who, after TWO YEARS of shooting, were momentarily elated to see their odious opus land on the shelves of Blockbuster. Trouble is, that's as far as their movement went, as their distributor, Dead Alive Productions, went belly up immediately after shipping discs off to the video giant. How's THAT for irony? But less than a year later, like a water-logged phoenix from the toilet bowl, the flick bubbled upward yet again thanks to Elite Entertainment's well-placed plunger.

This sublime symphony of [email protected]#% jokes soars into action with an Escape From Alcatraz-esque amscray by fecalphiliac serial killer Jack Schmitt (Brad Dosland) into the sewers of nearby Butte County. Though little does Schmitt know that the mad Dr. Stern (Dan Burr) has poured the acid-washed corpse of a contaminated colleague into said sewer whereby inadvertently transforming Jack into a hideous stool of superhuman size and stink. It's in this new, oddly appropriate form that Schmitt resumes his restroom rampage, even scrawling, with his own filth, warnings to future victims such as "Don't Get Caught With Your Pants Down!" It's a modus pooperandi well familiar to FBI agent Susan Hannigan (Beth West) who originally captured and knows Jack Schmitt better than anyone. Now, with the dubious assistance of Sheriff Duncan (Paul Weiner) and diaper-donning Deputies Dan and Rick (Wonder who they could be?), she's got ANOTHER killer mess to clean up -- and toot suite -- if the townfolk's annual chili cook-off is to be saved!

Also, as with Stevie Spielberg's shark, Popko and West wisely limit views of their bowel-born beastie until the fecalicious final reel where the combination of spray'd foam insulation and chocolate pudding is as awe inspiring as it is nauseating. What's still more fascinating, though, is that given how inherently juvenile any doodie monster movie is, this sucker somehow manages an oddball level of CHARM! Perhaps that's partially attributable to Hannah Stangel's bedtime-story narration which pays off with a deliciously satirical swipe at deep-pocketed Hollywood.

What's next for our THREE-thousand-dollar auteurs? A sequel, naturally. RetarDEAD is due to chart the vengeful return of Dr. Stern whose flawed hyper-intelligence serum wreaks zombirific havoc at the Butte County Institute of Special Education. Sounds like box office gold. Put yours truly down for 20 bucks AND a 12 pack, fellas!

No breasts. 12 corpses. Wriggling maggots. Boozing. Megaphone misuse. Gratuitous preparation montage. Symbolic carrot carving. Slow mo. Gratuitous urination. One Hannibal Lecter impression. Projectile puking. Gratuitous tarantula. Corn 'n' peanut chumming. Gratuitous fertility statuary. The entire screenplay is rife with pungent wordplay ranging from "The only [email protected]#%man Bobby ran into was in his pants!" to "You've been watching too many crappy horror movies!" to "A giant Number 2 killed my daddy!" But the craftiest wordsmithing of all has to be the end-credits toe tapper "Number 2: Ballad of the Monsturd" complete with SCATTING during the final chorus ...

I'm here to warn you
Though it must seem absurd
To be aware of a giant Monsturd

When the shit goes down
He may be in your town
Don't get caught with your pants down

Don't be a fool
Don't drop the kids at the pool
Oh yeah, he's one cruel stool

(Number 2! Number 2!)
Ooo Number 2 (Number 2! Number 2!)
(Number 2! Number 2!)
He does what the doo-doos do

(Number 2! Number 2!)
Ooo Number 2! (Number 2! Number 2!)
(Number 2! Number 2!)
He smells like poo

Silent but deadly, you'd better beware
He might just be in your underwear
Best hold your breath -- no, don't breathe that noxious vapor
Make sure you've got some toilet paper

Cause he'll pop out of the potty
When he's feelin' naughty
This is one moody doodie
That will bite you in your booty!

(Number 2! Number 2!)
Ooo Number 2 (Number 2! Number 2!)
(Number 2! Number 2!)
He does what the doo-doos do

(Number 2! Number 2!)
Ooo Number 2! (Number 2! Number 2!)
(Number 2! Number 2!)
He smells like poo

When he walks into the room
Kings and queens step aside
But that won't get to his foolish pride

And he'll pop out of the potty
When he's feeling naughty
This is one moody doodie
That will bite you in your booty!

(Number 2! Number 2!)
Ooo Number 2 (Number 2! Number 2!)
(Number 2! Number 2!)
He does what the doo-doos do

(Number 2! Number 2!)
Ooo Number 2! (Number 2! Number 2!)
(Number 2! Number 2!)
He smells like poo

(Number 2! Number 2!)
Ooo Number 2 (Number 2! Number 2!)
(Number 2! Number 2!)
He does what the doo-doos do

(Number 2! Number 2!)
Ooo Number 2! (Number 2! Number 2!)
(Number 2! Number 2!)
He smells like poo

A motion picture this, well, personal demands explanation. Popko and West dutifully do so via a lively and fearlessly self-effacing commentary alongside Mrs. West (Agent Hannigan) and Dan Burr (Dr. Stern). Ultimately, they just hope audiences enjoy the flick whether "you laughed with us or at us -- it doesn't really matter." The track also informs the raw outtake footage of flubbed lines, mangled effects and Dan's near suffocation in that crap critter getup. But best of all, CineSchlockers get to pace the sidewalk at the flick's triumphant theatrical premiere where the bows are ripely deserved by all who dealt it. (2002, 81 mins, Fullframe, DD 5.1, Commentary, Outtakes, Trailer.)

Check out CineSchlock-O-Rama
for additional reviews and bonus features.

G. Noel Gross is a Dallas graphic designer and avowed Drive-In Mutant who specializes in scribbling B-movie reviews. Noel is inspired by Joe Bob Briggs and his gospel of blood, breasts and beasts.
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