Back in the 70’s two very different genres came together in a number of frequently entertaining hybrids, the horror film and the blacksploitation film. For a brief moment the theaters were filled with the likes of BLACULA, ABBY, DR. BLACK, Mr. HYDE and on the other end of the spectrum BLACKENSTEIN. Sadly they, like the blacksploitation genre in general, fell from popularity with only the occasional film popping up. And look what has just popped up! Writer/director Darin Wood’s (PLANET OF THE VAMPIRE WOMEN, MONSTER FROM BIKINI BEACH) most recent film, BADASS MONSTER KILLER. If anything can jumpstart these films, this is it.
Taking it’s cues from SHAFT and the writings of H.P. Lovecraft the film pits super cool, super secret agent Jimmy Chevelle (Jawara Duncan PLANET OF THE VAMPIRE WOMEN) of the Dept. of Supernatural Security, a “super-secret government agency that protects the unsuspecting world from supernatural threats they don’t even know exist” against Reverend Dellamorte (Ryan Cicak) and his cult who are determined to find the Bride of Cthulhu and raise the Old Ones from their eternal sleep. Oh and by the way, five years ago they killed Jimmy’s partner, so it’s not just about the fate of the world, it’s personal. Can Jimmy save Camaroville and all it’s foxy, foxy women?
As you can tell, this is not an entirely serious film as anyone familiar with Wood’s other films, or his work with Trash Film Orgy will already have guessed. It spoofs the genres enough to play on the elements of both that are already absurd, while playing other parts fairly straight. The result is a wonderfully funny film that still manages to build suspense and will have you guessing about the outcome, something that can be rare even in straight films.
Part of the film’s magic is it’s look and sound. The exterior backgrounds are all CGI animated and look like something from a Ralph Bakshi film, COOL WORLD in particular. This gives it an other worldly tone right from the go that helps make the plot seem not so far fetched. The soundtrack by Phillip Baldwin nails the instrumental sound of 70s blacksploitation while some of the lyrics will have you laughing hard.
The creatures themselves are well designed, if not always flawlessly rendered. They are creepy enough and close enough to Lovecraft’s ideas to be effective. The gore effects tend to be a bit uneven, but there are plenty of scenes of creatures spewing acidic substances across strip clubs, (a good bit of this film takes place in strip clubs and there are a lot of boobs on display), and the resulting burning and melting flesh.
BADASS MONSTER KILLER is a great genre mashup, made funnier knowing that being the racist that he was Lovecraft would hate it. Currently available on VOD or the DVD can be ordered from their website http://badassmonsterkiller.com/ This is the kind of film we need more of.
BADASS MONSTER KILLER trailer: