Friday, May 13, 2011

DVD Review: Worst Horror Movie Ever Made

Text © Richard Gary/FFanzeen, 2011
Images from the Internet

Worst Horror Movie Ever Made
Directed by Bill Zebub
Bill Zebub Productions, 2008
110 minutes, USD $9.95

This was written by guest reviewer, Richard Gary.

If a viewer is questing for Spielberg-Lucas-Scorsese-type mastery of cinema and suspense, well, you’re looking in the wrong direction. However, if one is more into the likes of Craven, Carpenter and Hooper, well, you’re still aiming way too high. What you have here is, simply, a film directed by Bill Zebub.

And if one is willing to suspend disbelief (via will power, or other substances), his guaranteed-to-offend-everyone is a laugh a minute joy ride that will not make any sense, not leave you better for the viewing, but may satisfy something deep inside that speaks to the DIY-punk ethics and may remain with you past the end, even if it’s a “what the hell was that?”. This is sloppy fun that may actual make you think, “Hey, I can make something as good, if not better, myself!” Bill, I get the feeling, would encourage that. As he warns on the back of the box: “Contains nudity, creativity, and a complex plot.”

This entire film probably cost less than a coffee. Well, perhaps more because it was filmed once before in 2005, but scrapped and redone. Officially, the name of this is actually The Worst Horror Movie Ever Made: The Re-Make. Unfortunately, I never did get to see the original.

There are two main protagonists: Bill (played by Zebub) and his girlfriend, Danish Jeanne (portrayed by Andrea Szel; she’s not listed in the credit on IMDB, so I’m wondering if this was her choice – which would be understandable – or if she didn’t get along with Bill, and he snubbed her.

The film is fired off in the first of a number of set pieces, during a card game of strip poker. While some guests are being murdered in the kitchen by an ax murder who maniacally states lines like “Ax-acty,” and “I’ll bet you’re ax-periencing ax-crusiating pain.” Bill and Jeanne are arguing, and during a game of 52-card pick-up, Bill ax-cidentially –now he’s got me doing it! – kills one of the guests (see the DVD cover above), all by the six of diamonds. Bill and Jeanne take off to escape, only to fall into every (intentional) horror clich√© one can possibly think up.

I won’t give up all the jokes or nods, but here’s a few, both interesting and cheesy. Well, it’s all cheesy, but you know…

Bill pulls down his pants in the woods of New Jersey (all of Zebub’s films are done in Jersey, and a large portion take place in the woods for some reason). A woman sees his bare butt and claims, “Oh, no, a full moon,” turning into a werewolf. Well, a rubber wolf jowl that fits over her face that they probably picked up in a Halloween shop. Jeanne is attacked by a monster made of Bill’s poop (though you never see her or it in the same shot), and at the end she has what looks like chocolate pudding on her face. Of course, Bill states when he sees her, “You look like shit.”

From here Zebub mocks Catholics (Jesus, with a southern accent, is a villain), Muslim jihadists, the military, gays, and mostly himself. When Jeanne becomes the 50’ woman, the army shoots Bill into her, and her comment is, “As usual, I can't feel Bill when he’s in my vagina.” Yes, that’s a quote, folks.

Then there are zom-bees (yes, undead insects), spider puppets, ravaging trees (Evil Dead), and marauding rednecks. Oh, speaking of that, here is where the largest piece of suspension of everything comes into play: After being in the woods, Bill and Jeanne come out of a basement into a house. Jeanne, now mysteriously a blonde for only this segment, verbalizes how a flood came and took them from the forest and deposited them here, and she thinks it’s the deep south. Whaaaa?! I’m telling you, I replayed this comment three times because I was laughing so hard. While in that southern house, they get attacked by a mad scientist who wants to experiment on them, I should add, this is before the cretinous rednecks make their presence known.

That stretch of credulity though is just one of a series of head-scratching moments. Another is when members of the army are looking at a 50’ Jeanne through their hands shaped like binoculars, with nothing in them.

At one point, Bill ends up overmedicated at an asylum, filmed at what is obviously a food establishment (the Clash Bar in Clifton, NJ), and Jeanne manages to get him out by offering her body. They escape, and Bill then kicks her out of the car because she packed Monopoly money. While she is then attacked by Zombie Jesus (obviously a Zebub theme), Bill is picked up by two lesbian vampires. He threatens them with his own “wood” which brings derisive laughter at his “splinter.” There is a lesbian sex scene obviously here just so there could be a lesbian sex scene.

A lot happens in this film, much more than I described, all of it of questionable taste and certainly nothing socially redeeming in any stretch of the imagination. But what it does have it a ton of fun if you like this kind of out-there filmmaking.

Shot on a digital, handheld camera, this truly is DIY. The acting is stiff (especially Szel), the writing is non-existent, the effects are – what part of chocolate pudding don’t you get? – though there are some digital effects that were interesting, like Jeanne’s 50’ treatment, and Jesus flying through the air while nailed to a cross. The music, mostly death metal, is supplied by Sophia, Leaves Eyes, Septic Flesh, Korova, Beau Hunks, Hollenthon, Parzival, and the Jethros. There is also the incidental music from The Little Rascals and Laurel and Hardy thrown in (along with an evil Hardy puppet a la a sexual Chucky.

Watching the 15-minute outtakes and bloopers, Zebub comes across as either the fun guy at a party, or a complete jerk (suddenly screaming in the face of his costar without notice to scare her, is one example), I’m not sure. I do bet that his shoots are memorable.

Two shorts are included, both of which are extended scenes: Elyse Cheri does bikini strip in the wood for 3 minutes (feels longer), and Kathy Rice leads the lesbian vampire scene for a lengthy 8 minutes.

All 10 of the coming attractions are Zebub’s releases, such as Bad Acid, Dirtbags: Evil Never Felt So Good, Revenge of the Scream Queens, ZombieChrist (reviewed in this column earlier), and the metal documentary Metal Retardation.

The real bonus, however, is the inclusion of one of Bill’s earlier releases, Assmonster: The Making of a Horror Film (2006), about a trio of friends who find the DIY spirit when they realize that someone is selling bad DVR films at conventions for $30 apiece, and they sell because they include nudity and – and I use this word loosely – horror. This film is also fun, and actually is probably closer to autobiographically how Zebub began his career, such as it is.

So, bad film, bad acting, bad writing, no talent to speak of, but from beginning to end, it will hold your attention, make you laugh, raise your ire on many levels, and if you’re like me, lead to you wanting to see more of Zebub’s work.

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