Wednesday, September 5, 2012

REVIEW: Rock n' Roll Frankenstein (1999)

This is it, people – rock bottom. This is the worst out there. I really challenge you to find something worse than this, something more tasteless and ridiculous. Even the premise of the film doesn’t even sound real: A mad scientist creates a monster out of parts of dead rock and roll musicians, but puts a gay man’s penis on him and so the monster is confused about his sexuality – a plot point that takes up most of the film’s runtime. That sounds like some kind of horrendous satire of the shit I usually review. Am I really going through with this? Have I really sunk this low?

I mean really. I am currently delaying finishing this review just so I don’t have to go through the movie again to take the pictures for it. Even if I mute the sound like I usually do, just seeing clips of this movie again will send me into some kind of horrid comatose state of worthlessness and irrelevancy. But I guess that doesn’t matter, seeing as by the time I put this on my blog, it will already have the pictures on it. CRAZY TIME TRAVEL TWIST! Ooh, burn! What am I doing now? I dunno. I really have no point anymore if this is the kind of slop I’ve relegated myself to reviewing these days. Ha ha ha. I’ve really let myself go…let’s just see if we can get through this without me killing myself or someone else.

Director: Brian O'Hara
Starring: Liberace's Dick

You know how some movies start off cleverly and with the proper amount of build up to suck you into the story? Well this one just starts off with a fat, loud record executive arguing with some has been rockstar that looks like a rejected member of Motley Crue by way of a washed up Def Leppard member, saying he doesn’t want to take the exec’s crap any longer. We don't know either character and have no reason to care, so it's safe to say starting off in media res may not have been the brightest idea for a movie like this...but hey, a bright idea in THIS movie? Ha! What a laugh.

After he leaves, the record executive throws his fists in the air and proclaims that he will never get f*cked with again, and the film editors apparently thought it was so good of a line that they multi-track it three times over with a delayed echo effect, like something a horrendous horror-comedy trying too hard to be funny would do. Oh, wait...

Yeah, try eating a few less Big Macs per day there, bucko. And get some goddamn acting classes while you're at it.

Then we’re introduced to our other main character Frankie, who talks to a rabid weasel with cartoon blood red eyes all day while tinkering in his lab. Will this extremely insane abomination of nature and human decency be explained? No, so don't even bother. We've got plenty of other, stranger things to marvel at in this film!

You know, it is just amazing to me how this movie is able to overlook this. The film treats it like it's nothing just as the characters do. That's a big part of why this doesn't work; because nothing is given any kind of wonder or mystique like in better horror comedies like Re-Animator or Brain Dead. Here it's all just a big pile of 'meh,' with a side of 'bleh.' There is never any sense of imagination or creativity to this - just the lowest form of pandering imaginable. Sickening.

It turns out he’s related to the angry record executive, whose name is Bernie, and who wants him to build a Frankenstein out of dead rock star body parts to make the new big music sensation and get really rich. Yes, because when one musician leaves your label, the best solution is clearly to go and make an abomination of nature and defile the graves of dead people to scavenge their body parts…and also, I love how nonchalant everyone treats this idea in the movie, like it’s just every day shit to them. “We’re going to make a freak of nature that nobody in the whole world has ever really accomplished? Meh.”

So yeah, Bernie has his stoner buddy, Iggy, and a few of his friends, go out and steal body parts from the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Elvis Presley, among many others. They even start to make news headlines. Are you seriously telling me these bumbling stoners could ever get that much notoriety and not get caught? Give me a break.

Yup that's right, newspapers and cops all around the friggin' WORLD baffled by a pair of loser stoners! Hyuk hyuk! Why do I even bother?

But a problem does come when they have to get a penis for this rock n’ roll Frankenstein. Bernie says they need Jim Morrison’s, and Frankie says there’s some collector guy in the US who collects dead penises from famous musicians for some reason, so that’s where they go! You know, the most normal, non-weird plot element ever made…how did this even get written at all? Was there ever a need for a movie with a main plot point of ‘stealing the deceased Jim Morrison’s penis’? I really don’t think there was!

Anyway, they end up dropping Morrison’s penis into acid somehow, because they’re morons I guess. So instead they steal the penis of Liberace and pass it off as Morrison’s! And brace yourselves: the joke that goes along with this is really, really, REALLY awful!

"My wide eyed innocence will carry me through this movie way too far. I'm so oblivious and likable..."

So in a feat of incredible holy-shit Godlike science, Frankie creates a monster out of the parts of Elvis, Jimi Hendrix and Liberace that can walk, talk and function like a real human being in a few days or something. Nobody even bats an eye at this, but I guess that can be explained by the fact that most of the characters are stoned out of their minds, and the record executive guy has no soul at all. He just wants to control the monster and have him make money on stage for him, nothing else matters at all. I love one dimensional characters as much as any bad movie reviewer, but this seriously crosses the line into ZERO DIMENSIONAL CHARACTERS.

So yeah, they call the monster “The King,” like Elvis, ha ha ha, whatever…and at first he’s just confused and stumbles around like a cobble of disorganized body parts. So of course the big bad richy-rich record executive douche just proclaims the experiment a failure! Yes…the miraculous, once in a lifetime scientific godsend that is CREATING A BRAND NEW HUMAN BEING is a failure, unless it can make fatboy Danny Devito-wannabe some more cash! Did anyone involved in this possess ANY KIND OF LOGICAL THOUGHT? It’s seriously baffling to me how these characters think. I know money corrupts, but…but honestly, THIS MUCH? I don’t buy it.

I’m not even kidding: the rest of the movie is pretty much just “The King” questioning his sexuality, as the Liberace penis that he was given makes him gay now. So we get endless tired and ridiculously unfunny scenes of him literally talking to his dick, which speaks in an annoyingly high pitched, nasally voice that sounds like the kind of jokey voice you’d give someone you dislike when telling a story about them. It’s the movie equivalent of nails on a chalkboard, and you will want to kill yourself after each one.

I mean, I don’t even get it – Liberace really merited this much flogging? Why? Did they just randomly pick a dead, ambiguously-gay celebrity to rag on for no reason? It really does go beyond humor and into ‘mean spirited’ a lot of the time, and there isn’t any cleverness or subtlety to the jokes. Not that I was expecting that, but still, at least SOMETHING beyond this low-brow crap would have made it bearable at the very least! Something to distract me from this movie’s constant assault on every sense I have! Yes, even smell and taste. The movie somehow offends my smell and taste as well somehow.

But who cares about stuff like THAT when we have scenes of “The King” eating gerbils’ heads! I think that was just the Ozzy Osbourne portion of him coming out though…and when he tries to have sex with women, silly things like this happen:

"I just killed a hooker because I'm gay and it's your fault!" I even need to say anything? Nope, didn't think so.

Oh, please…killing hookers is just another integral part of being a real rock star. That’s not shocking at all.

But scenes like that one bring out one of the movie’s other main problems, the amount of time dedicated to the subplot about him being gay. If it were just a minor thing with a few minutes at a time devoted to it, it’d be fine. But this…is literally all the rest of the movie is! Just scenes of him bitching about being gay. The crazy record exec Danny DeVito knock-off finds out and starts mouthing off horrible homophobic swear words. Dingleberry? Check. Fudgepacker? Check. Faggot? Checkity check check. If you didn’t like this character before, oh ho boy…aren’t you just endeared to him now?

You could probably start a countdown of all the insults he uses in this movie and you’d get something that amounts to more than the budget for the entire film. And hell, I know you’d probably get at least half the script from those words. Way to expand our vocabulary, Rock n’ Roll Frankenstein!

The true spirit of the film, however, comes out when “The King” goes to a church in the middle of the night to the confessional. I especially love how he says that he’s been having unnatural urges and homosexual thoughts BEFORE saying he murdered two people plus a bunch of small animals…and then right after that, we see the priest is a gay pedophile himself, because I guess the director was surrounding himself with those like him.

Any movie that has a sodomizing scene via a large statue of Christ is at least trying, but it’s balanced out by the intense sense of unpleasantness and pandering this movie has, like getting a laugh would be the holy grail of cinematic achievements – only the film is marketed solely towards bottom dwelling sewer rats and pedophilic serial killers, and no one else would ever find anything in it funny…

Then Frankie the scientist finally decides to tell the world about his amazing creation and get famous for it…what he SHOULD have done in the first place! His logic is rewarded by death:

The amount of not caring from this scene is just astounding to me really. Yes, I'm very invested in the movie about a Frankenstein's monster that looks like Elvis with a gay split personality in his penis...right...

“The King” goes into a major rock star depression and puts ice over his crotch, which mostly serves to make him look even more ridiculous. Somehow, I don’t really remember or care how, he ends up squashing record executive’s head with a horrible claymation effect that even Nightmare on Elm Street 5 would laugh at, and that movie was ten years older than this shit:

What, is his head a grapefruit?

Then in some warehouse he ends up amputating his own penis (which looks like a giant green pickle) with a big hook, and then he instantly dies, just like the movie instantly dies, with a soundtrack of somber funeral march music…oh, shut up Rock n’ Roll Frankenstein.

I…I just have nothing to say about this. It’s not even so bad because it’s offensive to homosexuals – no one would ever take this seriously enough to actually be offended in THAT respect – it’s bad because it’s so tasteless in its execution and humor that you literally feel yourself getting older as you sit there watching it. It’s such a groan-worthy, eye rolling experience of a film, and literally nothing is gained from it. The "ideas," what little there are, are painful like a nail-gun to the skull, the acting sucks, the production value is barely existent at all and overall, I think it’s the worst thing ever created by humans. Rock n’ Roll Frankenstein, YOU ARE THE WORST OF HUMANITY!

The images in this review are not my own, nor would any sane person ever want to own them. But for the sake of completion, they are copyright of their original owners - God bless their poor souls.