The Direct to Video Connoisseur
I'm a huge fan of action, horror, sci-fi, and comedy, especially of the Direct to Video variety. In this blog I review some of my favorites and not so favorites, and encourage people to comment and add to the discussion. If you click on an image, it will take you to that post's image page, which includes many more pics from the film and other goodies I couldn't fit in the actual review. For announcements and updates, don't forget to Follow us on Twitter and Like our Facebook page. If you're the director, producer, distributor, etc. of a low-budget feature length film and you'd like to send me a copy to review, you can contact me at dtvconnoisseur[at]yahoo.com. I'd love to check out what you got.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
This was the second of three movies that we watched during the Netflix Bad Movie Night, hosted by fellow bloggers at Mr. Gable's Reality, Guts and Grog Reviews, and Morbidimentia. We've already looked at the first movie from that night, Monster Dog, starring Alice Cooper, and you can check out that post for more details on what the Netflix Bad Movie Night is all about.
Mom is about an elderly lady, living alone after her kids have grown up and moved out, who takes in a border. Problem is, the border is none other than DTVC favorite Brion James, and he's a flesh eating werewolf type thing. After Mom tries to feed him her world famous pot roast, he bites her, turning her into one of him. Her son, the heel from Ski School, follows her and James one night as they go out in search of a person to eat, and he flips out, killing James and locking his mom in her room. But can he keep her and her craving for human flesh locked away forever?
Had it not been for the morbid and dour ending, this might have been a pretty sweet piece of horror comedy. The idea of the nice sweet granny turning into a flesh eating monster is fantastic, and the interplay between her and her son made for some pretty funny scenes. Was it along the lines of Bad Taste or Evil Dead? Not quite, but maybe more in the Blood Diner vein, though the ending hurt it quite a bit. That's the thing with horror comedy, once you start down that road, you can't turn around and try to be serious at the end. It doesn't work. What also doesn't quite work is a horror comedy for a heckle party, because comedies are often too difficult to mock. If you're into 80s/90s low-budget horror, this has the feel you're looking for, just not finish.
Further on that theme of 80s/90s low-budget, Mom had me feeling nostalgic. It really has that video store find vibe to it, the 6th or 7th grade sleepover party pick-up, best enjoyed with some junk food and soda. As I was looking on Amazon to see if this was available for purchase, I realized just how much a product of its time it was. Produced before the age of Internet search engines, it's entire raison d'etre was to be found on a video store shelf; but with a name like "Mom", which is so generic, it's almost invisible now-- and there are no longer any video store shelves to see it on either. Even adding the "1991" isn't as much help as you'd expect, because Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead will pop up instead.
We love us some Brion James. Unfortunately here, he's gone after the first 20 minutes-- he must've had better things to do. One of the all time best baddies, he really brings it in even a short period of time, and I think might have been better as a kind of Fright Night Chris Sarandon style villain that stuck around longer, but I guess his short but sweet appearance was good too. Hey, any Brion James is better than no Brion James, right?
Mark Thomas Miller plays the son, though we know him better as the heel in Ski School, my all time favorite DTV comedy. He acquitted himself pretty nicely here, though it's been my experience that the heel in a comedy romp is often a pretty funny guy himself, so it's not that surprising. This movie could've used a little Dave Marshak too-- I would've overlooked a lot of this film's flaws.
One of the conversations that came up while watching this had to do with a scene where Miller gets his mom a hooker to eat. I asked if anyone would do the same, bring home a hooker for their mom to eat. The first response was no, she can get her own hookers. It's a tough call. I doubt I'd do it though either. Too much risk.
This is a hard one, because it wasn't bad on horror comedy until the ending betrayed it; but because it's more horror comedy than schlock horror, it's harder to make fun of on your bad movie night. Ultimately, I'd say skip it, unless you find it on Watch Instantly or something like that, and you're feeling nostalgic for the late 80s/early 90s.
For more info: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0100172/