September 21st, 2009

TWISTED OBSESSION (1990) *

Jeff Goldblum stars in this abysmal psychological thriller as a screenwriter whose wife has left him.  To get over that, he throws himself into his work and gets a gig writing a film for a stuffy producer and an inexperienced director.  It doesn’t take long for Goldblum to begin an affair with the director’s hot sister (Liza Walker) and even less time for him to develop a Twisted Obsession with her.

 

Twisted Obsession is one sorry excuse for a movie.  It’s mostly just a bunch of scenes of Goldblum trying to write a screenplay; so it’s more or less like one big DVD “Making of” featurette with some nominal erotic thriller stuff casually tossed in.  If the writer of this movie had spent as much time working on the screenplay for Twisted Obsession as Goldblum’s character did for the fictional film-within-a-film, this piece of shit may have been worth a damn.

 

Goldblum is usually fun to watch but he seems pretty miserable here.  I can’t say I blame him though because I felt the same way while watching the movie.  He also has to do a bunch of superfluous voiceover work (sometimes he even narrates over other people’s dialogue) which is a sure sign that the movie had scads of post-production trouble.  Co-star Miranda Richardson fares much better as Goldblum’s sexy paraplegic agent and at least imbues her character with a sense of mystery.

 

Twisted Obsession was a French co-production so that means there are long scenes where Goldblum and Co. speak in French minus the benefit of subtitles.  Honestly, I can’t say I gave a shit what they were saying to begin with, but still.  There’s also a shockingly bad taste scene in which Goldblum’s young son catches his daddy going down on his slut that will make you tamp your vomit back.  As boring, stupid, pointless and reprehensible as most of Twisted Obsession is; I’ll at least give it One Star for the gratuitous shot of Walker’s shaven vag.  That was cool.

 

AKA:  The Mad Monkey.

THE MONSTER MAKER (1944) **

Dr. Igor Markoff (J. Carroll Naish) is a major league creepo who has his eye on a concert pianist’s comely daughter.  Igor immediately starts stalking her and sends her a dozen roses a day.  Her dear old dad has enough of the Markoff’s unwanted affections and confronts the daffy doctor face to face.  Since Markoff is a nutjob, he knocks Piano Man out cold and injects him with a drug that gives him an advanced case of acromegaly.  Pretty soon, the pianist’s head balloons up so that he looks like the Elephant Man’s marginally more handsome brother.  The doctor then blackmails the pianist; saying that he’ll only cure him after his daughter becomes the new Mrs. Markoff.

 

This creaky chiller is just like dozens of other mad scientist movies from Poverty Row studio PRC.  It’s directed without much enthusiasm by Sam (The Mad Monster) Newfield and is padded with a lot of talk and too much exposition.  Even at 62 minutes, it seems way longer than that and it moves at a snail’s pace to boot.

 

As dull as most of the movie was, there were still a couple of things about the flick that made me chuckle though.  For instance, I found it kinda hilarious how the mad doctor’s name was Igor and his assistant was called Steve.  Usually it's the assistant that's named Igor.  I guess they were trying to be different.  And most times in movies like this, the scientist is the handsome one and the assistant is a hunchback or something.  Here, the doctor is a complete letch and his right-hand man is all suave and even has a dapper looking pencil-thin moustache.  The doctor was also a lot more mental than the norm.  I mean we’re talking about a guy who would infect a chick’s dad with acromegaly just because she didn’t put out.  You don’t see that everyday. 

 

Suggested Drinking Game:  Take a shot every time someone says, “acromegaly”.  If you do, you’re guaranteed to come down with a case of drunk-o-megaly.