Smash Cut Lee Demarbe

Smash Cut Lee Demarbe
Lee Demarbre's love letter to goresplotation icon Herschel Gordon-Lewis is pretty much the definition of "cult filmmaking for a very specific audience." If you're in on the joke and don't mind being considered a sick, sick, fuck, Smash Cut is bloody classic waiting for disciples. After a campy introductory warning from Gordon-Lewis, the movie opens with Z-minus grade filmmaker Abel Whitman's appallingly terrible film within a film, which is met by audience comments like, "He makes Ed Wood look like Orson Wells" and even worse reviews. Drowning his sorrows at a tittie bar, which is also where he does his casting, Whitman gets into a terrible car accident with his newest stripper muse, who dies upon impact, a half-blown, blood-filled gum bubble hanging out of her mouth. Instead of reporting the accident, Whitman pops her in his trunk after accidentally ripping her arm off and starts using her blood, body and parts as props in his new film, for a greater sense of realism. Of course, everyone is stunned by the quality of his new props, but there's only so much blood in one corpse, so when using his blood doesn't yield enough pints, Whitman begins a long spiral into madness, starting with the hilarious murder of a film critic via serrated film-slate. Meanwhile, reporter April Carson, played by Sasha Grey (The Girlfriend Experience) in her first fully clothed role, is trying to find her missing stripper sister, with the aid of laughably pompous private dick Isaac Beaumonde, a plot point lifted directly from Gordon-Lewis's The Gore Gore Girls, in a sly homage. Their investigation leads to Whitman's studio where April gets cast as the new lead after running Hamlet (the first horror film, according to Whitman) with an actual severed head. Howard Hess (Krug, from the original Last House on the Left) plays Whitman's descent into madness with manic zeal. His performance, the utter ridiculousness of Whitman's increasingly vile acts and the intentionally cheap effects depicting them keep Smash Cut on the side of hysterical, rather than nauseating, though the eye gouging scene is not for the weak-stomached. Film geek fans of Evil Dead 2 who're up for something much more depraved could very well love Smash Cut. The behind-the-scenes content is top-notch, revealing the decisively non-vegan nature of some props, and the gag reel is lots of fun. Also included are deleted and alternate scenes, with a teaser for a sequel, Sasha Grey's video diary, director's commentary and perplexingly, a clip of what's apparently the actual film, Terror Toy 2, which is far, far worse than Smash Cut's satirizing could ever make you believe. Enjoy, sickos! (E1)