Thursday, November 12, 2015

Dave Parker's Slimy Little Bastards

Cody watches a goopy and goofy horror/comedy anthology.

I would be surprised if a horror fan who pays attention to the online community hasn't at some point seen at least one movie review video by Dave Parker, YouTube user mrparka. He's been at it for over seven years at least, and has created a lot of content over those years. He has recently started acting in movies as well, frequently working with independent filmmaker Dustin Mills, who has been mentioned several times on this blog.

Now Parker has taken the next step, making his feature writing and directorial debut with the horror/comedy anthology Slimy Little Bastards.

Like many of the classic anthologies, Slimy Little Bastards has a storyteller, in this case Mills regular Brandon Salkil channeling Vincent Price and going wonderfully over-the-top as the Curator, a man who collects strange little creatures for his roadside attraction of the macabre. When a pistol-packing stranger (Keith Voigt Jr.) shows up at his door, the Curator invites him in and regales him with three tales of ooze-coated terrors.

The first story is called Organic Shit, and centers on an exceptionally odd fellow (Jeremy Ryan) who seeks the help of his apartment building's maintenance man (Dustin Mills) when he notices green slime seeping up from his garbage disposal.

There's really not much to this one, but it's made entertaining by the actors' performances and some cool special effects.

Things get a bit more twisted with the second segment, Brain Busters, which stars Erin R. Ryan - one of my favorite actresses working in the indie scene today - as a depressed, agoraphobic young woman who is prescribed a new drug by an unscrupulous doctor (Mills again). Whenever she drips this stuff into her ear, her emotions manifest as a homicidal slimeball.

This segment is more interesting and ambitious, although maybe a little too ambitious. There are some nice stylistic flourishes throughout, but it also suffers from technical issues. Most jarring to me was out-of-sync audio during some phone calls and I really don't know if that was a choice or a tech failure, but it was bothersome. Still, it's a solid story overall.

For a segment in an anthology film, the third story, The Crusties, takes an unusually long time to get to the point. For the better part of ten minutes, we're just hanging out with a group of mildly disgusting dudes (including Jeremy Ryan, Mills, and Salkil) who get together for a game of Dungeons & Dragons. Throughout this, there are cutaways to a construction worker, played by Parker, who gets understandably and terribly ill after eating a sandwich coated with radioactive material. As it turns out, this guy is the roommate of one of the D&D players and ends up crashing the game with his toxic diarrhea.

Despite the slow start, The Crusties turns out to be the most enjoyable of all the segments. It's very funny and features the film's coolest creatures. I was left wanting to see the Crusties carry a whole movie on their own, like the Ghoulies, Critters, Gremlins, and Munchies before them.

Slimy Little Bastards might have some issues, if you like your movies to look technically flawless and perfectly polished it's definitely not one for you, but for me the problems with its execution were more than made up for in entertainment value. Although Brain Busters ventures into serious territory, overall it's not a movie to be taken seriously. Just sit back and have fun with it.

Slimy Little Bastards delivers 66 minutes of laughs and gross-outs, which is exactly what you want when you put on a movie with that title. If you're a fan of micro-budgeted movies who would seek out something called Slimy Little Bastards, I don't think it will let you down.

The movie is not officially available for order as of this writing, so keep an eye on its Facebook page for updates on its release.

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