Monday, September 21, 2009

Blackenstein (1973)

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"Not since Frankenstein has stalked the earth
Has the world known so terrifying a day...or night!"
Starring Joe De Sue, John Hart and Ivory Stone
Directed by William A. Levey
From Frisco Productions Limited

A lot of people have probably figured out by now that one of my favorite guilty pleasure horror flicks is the one, the only -
Blackenstein.

My favorite film of the Blaxploitation flicks, simply for the fact that it is so inept, so poorly written, directed and acted, nonsensical - so bad that it is a classic.

Yes, it is none other than Blackenstein - the Black Frankenstein! Even the title makes no sense, given that the "mad doctor" in the flick is white! But that might be the least of the film's problems.

The plot (what of one there is) centers around beautiful young Dr. Winnifred Walker (Ivory Stone), whose fiance Eddie (Joe De Sue - try looking him up on IMDB, kids) was blown to bits in Vietnam. Poor Eddie has returned home to a VA hospital with no arms and no legs.

Hoping to find some sort of treatment for her true love, Dr. Walker seeks out her old mentor, Dr. Stein (John Hart). You see, the amazing Dr. Stein (get it, Dr. "Stein".....see, they dropped off the...oh, never mind....) supposedly just won the Nobel Peace Prize for "solving the DNA genetic code." No, you are not reading that incorrectly, nor am I completely drunk. Yes, it's so insanely awful that you can't look away.

Dr. Stein agrees to help Eddie by using his "DNA formula" which will help reattach limbs and rehabilitate the poor vet. No explanation where the good doctor just happened to find a pair of arms and legs laying around, but who cares? He has DNA! And it is stored in mayonaise jars with masking tape labels, so you know it will work.

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During Eddie's course of treatment, Dr. Stein's creepy butler/assitant/cook named Malcom sabotages the DNA medicine. Why you ask? Well, of course after knowing her for oh something like two days, Malcom is comlpetely head over heals in love with Dr. Walker! Didn't see that one coming!

As a result, Eddie is transformed into - wait for it....wait for it.........Blackenstein!!! Although Eddie was last seen in a hospital gown, he now suddenly is wearing a too small black suit coat and matching pants, grey shirt and giant platform boots. Not to mention a snazzy new square afro!

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Like all good monsters, Blackenstein escapes his hospital cell (Eddie's deluxe treatment includes a stay in what appears to be a wine cellar) at night and wantonly murders with no rhyme or reason (why would you expect anything more from this film?).

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Blackenstein attacks many a scantily clad woman, rips off people's heads, pulls out intestines, kills an annoying dog, and is ultimately cornered by the police in a warehouse. There, Blackenstein is mauled by police dogs and we are treated to an extraoridnary sequence of watching the hounds rip his newly attached limbs assunder, and making a nice meal out of his innards.

The End.

Yes, it is as bad as it sounds, but such a guilty pleasure. Truly one of the most low budget inane flicks you will ever sit through, but so worth it.

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Blackenstein - The Black Frankenstein. Your life will never be the same again.

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