Friday, December 10, 2010


Sneak peek into the home life of Shelby Cobras: It's Sunday night, 7 pm. Our protagonist just ate some soup. Hm. What to do now?
Cory said that 1980's Roadie, starring Meat Loaf and Alice Cooper, is free via Comcast OnDemand right now. Maybe he should check that out? Nothing else going on in this godforsaken city. But where is it? Free movies? FearNet? IFC? Hm. Maybe he should text Cory to find out...

The following are ACTUAL text messages from last Sunday:

Cobras: Where is Roadie ondemand?
Cory: It's gone now but snakeeater starring Lorenzo llamas is p good
Cobras: Duh
Cory: He's a loose cannon wise cracking cop suspended for using excessive force
Cobras: Story of my life
Cory: And theres some movie called mind warp starring Bruce Campbell and the old man from phantasm
Cobras: Angus scrimm? Fuck yeah

This thrilling exchange represents the exact time and place I first learned of the existence of 1992's Mindwarp (AKA Brainslasher), star vehicle for both Angus Scrimm and Bruce Campbell, two iconic figures in the horror pantheon who I indeed hold near and dear to my heart. How had I not heard of this film before? It was made by Fangoria Films, and with star power like that Mindwarp should be common currency in the realm of 90's sci-fi/horror, correct?
Not so. Why?
Because it's terrible. Terrible terrible terrible.

But it's terrible in a way that is specifically pleasing to the Illogical Contraption mindset. As post-apocalyptic mutants (they're called "Crawlers") stumble around a barren landscape bedecked in barbarian furs and hubcaps, as insolent actors deliver foolish dialogue in front of horrific set designs, as poorly-lit scenes featuring Gwar-esque creatures in shoddy latex costumes dance across your periphery, you can't help but love Mindwarp for what it is: a train wreck. A gory, bloody, awful train wreck.
Did I mention the guy with the bendy straws in his head who (inexplicably) shoots blue lazers from his crotch?

This movie has absolutely no shortage of fatal flaws, but "weak plot" ain't one of 'em. We begin with your standard "artificial existence in the void/virtual reality" sort of trip, quickly establishing that a company called Infinisynth (also the name of Cory's new band, uncoincidentally) has cornered the market on (gasp!) people's minds after the world is annihilated in a nuclear holocaust (quickly summed up Road Warroir-style in a cheap, stock footage montage at the beginning of the flick). We are introduced to female protagonist Judy while she is attached to her Infinisynth VR machine, and it is immediately obvious that this is going to be one of those "it was all a dream... OR WAS IT!??!?!?!" kind of movies.
Judy is having all sorts of existential problems regarding her one-dimensional dream existence, which she mostly expresses through sighing loudly and delivering her lines in a nasal monotone. Luckily, things get really wacky really fast, and soon Judy is fleeing from radioactive mutants in some sort of Arctic desert, only to be saved by our boy Bruce, only to be captured again and trundled away to an underground dystopia that sort of resembles a way lazier version of Toxie's digs in The Toxic Avenger. And all this happens before the cannibalism, or the weird incestuous-breeding subplot, or the carnivorous slugs, or the people drinking blood out of a water fountain.
Sounds awesome, right?

Reaction shot right after Bruce pukes a shitload of bloody slugs on her face. Seriously.

NOPE. Remember what I said back there about "fatal flaws"? Well, the MAIN one is Judy herself, as acted by forgotten, uh, star(?) Marta Martin (she went by "Marta Alicia" in this film). In short, this chick is just plain annoying as fuck. Not only does she seem to have trouble stringing sentences together or expressing even the most basic of human emotions in her facial area, but Judy just looks uncomfortable in front of a camera, as if maybe she's worried she might forget the rules, break the fourth wall, and start delivering her lines straight to the cameraman. Not only that, but Angus Scrimm, one of the main selling points of this movie, doesn't even make his first "official" appearance until a full hour into the film. And when he does, he appears to be pretty buzzed (not "acting" buzzed, either).
It's all kind of depressing and sloppy and stupid, but I mean, that's what "normal" people look for in movies, right? Right!?!?!?

I'm not going to debase this fabulous catastrophe any further by trying to explain it, OK?. Just watch:

You guys are just DYING to see this, aren't you? Well, apparently you can't get it on Netflix, as I'm pretty sure it never even got to DVD. You can buy it on VHS here, but who has time for that shit? How about instead, you watch it in fuckin' HD, in its entirety, for free, RIGHT HERE?

Now watch this: Mindwarp. Brainwarp. Brainscan. Mindscan. WTF?


Oliver said...

A friend if mine actually owns this on DVD and it is pretty shitty saved only very slightly by Campbell. He does make most stuff he is in entertaining. Still, film sucks ass.

RyGar said...

Have you watched any of those awful Masters of Horror flicks? Amazing wastes of talent. Anyways, Angus appears in "Incident On and Off a Mountain Road." I think Coscarelli still felt guilty about the Tall Man's lack of dialogue in the first Phantasm, because Scrimm's character never shuts up. It's the highlight of an otherwise lame and unsettling story.

gooniestorm said...

dude, i watched "roadie", it was also terrible. it did, however, feature debbie harry's fine ass, singing the most ill-advised cover ever. because the world really needed to hear blondie's version "ring of fire"

Anonymous said...

best "3 pic stop motion thingy" ever!

Mike said...

The last animated picture makes me sick to my stomach. I guess that's a good thing?