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08 August 2011

The Toxic Avenger (1985)

Directed by: Lloyd Kaufman & Michael Herz
Genre: Horror, Comedy, Sci-Fi
Runtime: 90 Minutes
To begin with I think this film is one of the goriest I have seen come out of the 80’s and there are many good make-up effects here. Although “Toxic Avenger” is completely stupid in plot and very tacky with the acting, it is a silly but fun gross-out kind of film. It has the feeling of a shoestring budgeted film but it still surprises you with the gory effects. You could call it a dark humoured satire with the deaths and killings but the film is not completely bad. 

The Toxic Avenger is about the transformation of a mild-mannered, scrawny janitor into a thundering, muscular hero out for justice, morality, and in one case, a bit of sex. Melvin (Mark Torgl) has a job as a custodian at a workout club where his humiliating treatment by the muscle-bound reaches an ugly climax in which Melvin is forced to jump out of a window. He lands in a toxic waste truck, and by some miracle of modern pollution, he is transformed into a pumped-up monster, heretofore known as the Toxic Avenger (Mitchell Cohen). From that moment on, TA saves damsels and others in distress by some gory mauling and maiming but finds his moment of fulfilment too.

The films violence is off the scale. To name a few ghastly events we have a group of teenagers who have a fetish for murdering who run a child’s head over with a car, the toxic avenger putting someone’s hands in a deep fat fryer and even a female midget being put in a tumble dryer. With all this in hand is outstanding make-up that I always remembered the 80’s for doing.
That's Melvin.
The acting was above mediocre but it added to the frantic fun of it in a way. It really had that 80’s corny feel to it. Another interesting thing was sometimes when the avenger was onscreen; you would hear the classic Ed Wood monster movie music, which I believe, is from “Plan 9 from Outer Space”. Therefore, it has a slight homage feel to these monster movies. The film was made on a budget of $500, 000 and for that amount, the effects were surprising and this was probably because it did not cost much to find actors. The film went on to grossing $800, 000.

The film as a whole really is stupid. Even the ending leaves you thinking, “What the hell is wrong with that town?” If you want to see some good gory comedy then this film will be a little bit entertaining for you. It is not necessarily good, but it is not terrible. A wacky spoof of heroic movies is dumb, but fun for a one-time viewing.  However, be warned, the film is not, and I repeat NOT for the faint hearted.

My Rating: 6.5/10

2 comments:

  1. Nice review, I've never heard of this for what seems like good reason.

    ReplyDelete

 

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