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Friday, October 2, 2015

Video Beaverhausen: Thundercrack! ~ an Underground Classic

Watching this cult underground classic was a gas initially, and perfect for a windy, rainy October night. This polymorphous-perverse camp classic is a seminal work that has influenced artists like John Waters and others. Made in 1975, it is full of hilarious dialogue and bravado bad acting.

The movie has a rotten score (mostly on piano), bad acting, deliberately awful dramaturgy but plenty of cinematic style.

It has a kind of Old Dark House premise, much like The Rocky Horror Show. A driver picks up an absurd number of hitchhikers and their car crashes, forcing them to spend the night at an alcoholic mess's home. She dresses them in costumes.

There's a becoming crudeness to it all, and it had a Charles Ludlam's Ridiculous Theater quality to it all, which I wouldn't be surprised to find out was an influence. It's also chockfull of absurdist but very explicit and hard-core pornography including a peephole sequence lifted directly from Hitchcock's Psycho, though with a female voyeur. Oh, and there's a gorilla on the loose!

There is, indeed, a point where Thundercrack! gets tiresome with its preposterous affectations, eventually becoming none-too-interesting despite its early promise.

This film is solely for brave souls to enter into if they dare.

Directed by Curt McDowell. On dvd, available on an unnamed Dutch import label with Dutch subtitles.





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