Four Twisted Tales that lead to a Dead End.
It was in late 2010 when I had my first exposure to the film “Psycho Street”. I was at the HorrorHound Weekend show in Cincinnati, Ohio and they were having a short film festival. Most of the shorts were forgettable with the exception of three. “Meth”, “United Monster Talent Agency”, and “Hypochondriac” were all distinctly different, with “Hypochondriac” being the funniest and most outrageous. It has been in the back of my mind since I had seen it and was curious as to the status of the rest of the project. Then somehow I came across a post by executive producer Marv Blauvelt on Facebook that the film was finished and would be available soon. Needless to say I wasted no time acquiring myself a copy. Though not quite what I was expecting, I was not disappointed.
The happy homemaker Leyla (Tiffany Shepis) has a taste for murder. She also just happens to be a host of sorts that leads us through the bizarre happenings in the small town of Kronenberg. We are first led into the local doctor’s office where the story of “Hypochondriac” unfolds. When a big city doctor (played by Marv Blauvelt) moves to take over the tiny office, Nurse Amber ( Raine Brown) tries to keep things moving smoothly but the town residents have other plans. In “Antibodies”, a mother uses her daughter as a sex slave but their intentions are not what you would think. Finally in “Lewis”, a young single mother is confronted by the darkness of her childhood while trying to keep her daughter safe.
When I had seen “Hypochondriac”, I assumed that the rest of the film would have a similar tone. That segment reminded me of mid-80’s Troma film. The humor, story, and acting is just over the top. Gross out humor plays a major part and works like a charm. “Anti-bodies” is more of a gory sci-fi shocker with some really nasty moments. And “Lewis” is more of a straight horror story right out of the 70’s with disturbing images and an unsettling story. So the tone leaps around but it’s almost like a progression. It starts out with the humor, then moves into the bizarre, gross, uncomfortable. Then lastly, they play it straight (though they do keep the bizarre) trying to haunt you. The wrap-around story “Come On Down” is flat out fun and has some nice work by Shepis and Brown. It was also interesting to see the actors play completely different roles from one segment to the next. The most notable being Susan Adriensen who was in both “Hypo” and “Lewis” really showing off her range. Deneen Melody also pours her heart and soul into the “Lewis” segment and was very believable.
This film is NOT FOR THE KIDDIES!! It’s very explicit, not only with the gore but also with the nudity (both male and female). It is a Muscle Wolf Production so if you know that name, you should know what to expect. I wasn’t sure how the films would play within the context of an anthology but “Come On Down” is a nice setup and easily allows them to intertwine and give us a sense at how messed up the town of Kronenberg is.
“Psycho Street” knows exactly how to push all of your buttons! It makes you laugh, cringe, and maybe even stir up a tiny tingle in the loins (again there is a little for everybody which kind of makes it a bit unique). I really think that other independent films should learn something from “Psycho Street”. It just seems to me that doing several shorts then stringing them together is a great way to do a film. Especially a genre film like this and it also offers up the opportunity for first time or less seasoned filmmakers to get their toes wet and learn on the fly. If you can’t appreciate “Psycho Street” then you should be promptly bitch slapped and have you horror fan license revoked. I’m looking forward to seeing where this crew goes next. **** (out of 5)
Psycho Street (2012)