Tonight I went to The Midsummer Night's Scream Spooky Movie Festival at the Cinema Arts Theatre in Fairfax. I have mentioned my fondness for this theatre before. I continue to believe that it is way cool that an independent movie theatre located in a bland suburban shopping mall shows a mixture of mainstream and art films. I'm not sure that tonight's offering qualified as either.
The evening started with four shorts, introduced by Count Gore de Vol of Creature Feature fame. The only one I really found successful was "Seekers," partly because I always have had a weakness for vampire movies. Both "The Ancient Rite of Corey McGillis" and "The Marionette" got too gory for me, while I just didn't understand "Eight Thirty-Two."
But, like most people there, I'd come for the main feature. "Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead" was described as "a cautionary tale of what happens when you build a fast food (chicken) restaurant on top of an ancient Indian burial ground, and then set it to music." The hero, Arbie, goes to work at American Chicken Bunker, when he discovers that Wendy has forsaken her promise for college not to change her. Specifically, she has become a lesbian and is protesting the construction of the ACB on the burial ground. Paco Bell and Carl Jr. fall victim to mysterious and disgusting accidents and it turns out that the Indian spirits have united with the chicken victims of concentration coops to avenge themselves on humans, "the other white meat."
This is a typical product of Lloyd Kaufman's Troma Film Studio, which is probably best known for "Toxic Avenger." The movie is definitely disgusting and offensive to nearly everyone, with a lot of toilet humor and gratuitous sex. It is also hysterically funny. You can get a taste with this (definitely not safe for work) video.
There are upcoming screenings in a number of cities, including San Francisco, Pittsburgh and Atlanta. If you like totally tasteless humor, I highly recommend it. My only complaint about the movie is that there aren't quite enough musical numbers.
By the way, there was a Q&A with Lloyd Kaufman after the movie and he had some pretty interesting things to say about the problems of independent movie producers. The short version is that he linked the lack of distribution for independents to the fight for net neutrality