Now With More Than 3600 Reviews! Go Nuts - Read 'Em All!!

WELCOME! Use the search engines on this site (or your own off-site engine of choice) to gain easy access to the complete MAKSQUIBS Archive; over 3600 posts and counting. (New posts added every day or so.)

You can check on all our titles by typing the Title, Director, Actor or 'Keyword' of your choice in the Search Engine of your choice (include the phrase MAKSQUIBS) or just use the BLOGGER Search Box at the top left corner of the page.

Feel free to place comments directly on any of the film posts and to test your film knowledge with the CONTESTS scattered here & there. (Hey! No Googling allowed. They're pretty easy.)

Send E-mails to . (Let us know if the TRANSLATE WIDGET works!) Or use the Profile Page or Comments link for contact.

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, May 27, 2013

NARCOTIC (1933); MANIAC (1934)

Shot on a dime for the exploitation market, these two oddities from Dwain Esper (paired on a KINO DVD) are siblings with a difference. MANIAC is a campy, DIY attempt at a Universal Horror pic; think zero-budget FRANKENSTEIN with a bit of ‘nudie’ action tossed in the mix. Fodder for the Mystery Science Theater wiseguys* and not far from Ed Wood territory. Whereas NARCOTIC, made just the year before, is something else again. A supposed exposé of one man’s decent into drug addiction, it's less the work of someone who’s never made a film then of someone

who’s never seen one. Jumping around in time, place & action with the logic of an unintentional Dadaist, Esper seems to be making up his own film grammar & syntax as he goes along, we might be deciphering the cries of a babbling baby. What did patrons of the day make of it? The best scene, if you can call it that, is a little drug shindig with a smorgasbord of stimulants, guests in formal garb and a glossary’s worth of the hep slang of the day in addict terminology. Little approaches this level of deconstruction in MANIAC, but within the stock footage Esper haphazardly puts in to pad out the running time is some truly nasty animal atrocity stuff and a remarkable clip from an Italian silent pic that’s superimposed over some villainy. KINO gives us a clip of this from the original film, MACISTE IN HELL/’25, a sort of Hercules in the UnderWorld pic, which looks pretty cool . . . in its creepy way. Sort of Italian-UFA style, and well worth checking out if you can find it.

SCREWY THOUGHT OF THE DAY: *Why listen to those MST guys? Do your own obnoxious comic commentary.

DOUBLE-BILL: It’s its very own Double-Bill.

No comments: