Saturday, July 12, 2014

Rare Flix: Meet the Hollowheads

When you give someone complete creative control, crazy shit like this can happen.  Today's film is Meet The Hollowheads, the one and only film by Thomas Burman.  He didn't die or fall into a Black Hole or something- he just only Directed once.  He has worked and continues to work as a Make-Up Effects guy in films like Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978), The Goonies (which explains a bit later) and current stuff like...Grey's Anatomy.  It's true- he works on the show right now!  Jumping back to 1989, he was given free reign to make his own film.  The result: a 1950's-style Sitcom Plot if it was Produced by Dr. Seuss on Acid.  It is weird.  It is damn weird.  Notable Cast Members include John Glover- who has played The Riddler, Dr. Phosphorus and Lionel Luthor- and Juliette Lewis, the latter of whom was trying to segue out of playing younger roles.  While she still plays a Teenager, this is definitely not the normal role for Teen Actresses!  If you ever wondered what would happen if a man who mostly made monstrosities for films actually got to write one, this is a good object lesson.  To see how this crazy mess plays out, read on...
Since it was made in 1989, Meet has a Rap Song introducing all of the Characters.  It was made in that awkward time before Rap became mainstream.  See Waxwork II or Adams Family Values...

Anyhow, the Dad works at...the Pipes and is bringing the Boss to Dinner in order to get a promotion.
The youngest son comes home with a black eye he got in a fight.  The Mom has a cure: strap him into a machine and let a giant leech thing suck the blood out!

You all have one of those right?
She spends most of the film preparing dinner.  In this weird, possibly-post-apocalyptic world, this is done by luring a creature's...hand (I hope) past this hole and then chop it off!

As the old saying goes, you have to chop a few monster dongs to make a monster dong omelette!
The family is quite odd- shockingly.  The young son has weird toys in his room, the daughter- Juliette Lewis- is apparently kind of a whore and the oldest son plays...this.  It is a...something.
Anne Ramsay makes her final screen appearance- since Burman created the Sloth make-up for The Goonies- as a crazy lady who is in charge of the Pipes.  She yells at the son and his friend- who were sent out to get it fixed- and just generally acts odd.  She's also subtitled...while speaking in English.
The Boss comes over, but acts like a real jerk.  On top of that, he abuses the young son and hits on the Mom pretty fierce.

On the plus side, the older kids are off doing drugs (among other things).  Oh...wait.
Things 'go South' eventually and the Boss gets very aggressive.  They keep thinking that he's dead- after about 3 times that he should be- but he keeps getting back up.
Things get worse when the older son shows up high off of his ass and the daughter is brought back shortly thereafter by the Police- with Bobcat Goldthwait?!?- also high off of her ass.  Oh and she was gang-raped....because funny?
In the End, the Boss is taken down AGAIN and left lobotomized in their basement with Grandpa (don't ask!).  Don't worry- Mr. Hollowhead gets the just saying that the Boss gave it to him.

Everyone wins...except for the Boss and their super-creepy dog.  The End.
What in the blue hell was that?!?  This rare film from the 1980s is just plain weird.  The thing about it that is freaky is that it is structured like an old-school Sitcom.  It is a story grounded in reality, but done in such a bizarre way.  The Dinner- crazy, multi-colored mush made out of freaky, monster parts.  The Boss- a freak who gets mutilated many times in self-defense.  The Job- working at a Slime Factory around the Pipes.  The Family- a bunch of people with odd vices and personalities.  In many ways, it foreshadowed stuff like The Addams Family films that would come a couple years later.  The best and worst thing you can say about the film is that it was clearly made by a Special Effects (in this case, Make-Up) Guy.  You could see that in the overly-stylish aspects of Catwoman.  The film is a great showcase for the bizarre, Practical Effects that Burman brought/brings to the table.  In that regard, I really like it.  I can't say that is is my favorite film right now, however, since, well, it is full of weird, freaky imagery.  I wasn't ever 'grossed out' like some people would be, but they are a freaky sight to see.  If you are into that kind of thing, it is worth checking out.  Burman seems to only have been given one chance to do much more than do Make-Up Effects- you decide how you feel about that.  Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to put my face on...
Next up, some new crap in the form of a DTV a Remake...which already had a Sequel.  I love it when films blatantly lie to you!  Stay tuned...

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