Monday, October 25, 2010

Basket Case 2

Picking up right where the original left off, Duane and his tiny, deformed, ex-conjoined twin brother Belial apparently survive the fall from the hotel window and are taken to the hospital. They escape the authorities with help from a mysterious older woman, who brings them back to a special safe haven for mutant freaks like them.

Frank Henenlotter is sort of a poor man's Sam Raimi, making low-budget, demented horror comedies heavy on over-the-top violence and special effects. I've had a certain appreciation for the his that I've seen (the original Basket Case, Brain Damage, Bad Biology) for their warped sense of humor (Bad Biology is about an evil mutant penis that breeds with a woman with a giant, 7-clitted vagina), but they've all been somewhat hampered by their sometimes cheap, awkward production and filmmaking. Perhaps by virtue of the fact that it obviously had a larger budget than his other films, Basket Case 2 was the most all-around solid Henelotter film I've seen.

The main appeal, of course, is the freakshow; the film provides a cavalcade of crazy looking monsters with huge teeth, misshapen heads, weird tendrils, etc. It's a mini-masterpiece of low budget make-up effects that will delight anyone who enjoys this sort of thing.

Two standout scenes: 1) Belial gets laid with a fellow mutant, 2) a man slowly realizes that the other patrons in the bar he's at are not normal people but mutant freaks, all wearing bizarre, expressionless, unconvincing human masks.

Grade: B

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