Friday, November 27, 2009
Silent Madness 3-D (1984)
T&A Factor 2/5
An asylum doctor issues release orders for patients that he deems fit and no longer in need of care. Much to the chagrin of his staff, he's trying to reduce costs and boost the notoriety of his practice with the number of people he releases who 'appear' to no longer be a threat to society or themselves. That's all fine and dandy until his lead attending psychiatrist finds out that a computer error was made and that they released someone they shouldn't have. Whoops!
The man who's mistakenly let out promptly goes on a killing spree, using sledgehammers, knifes, axes and vice clamps to kill off young college coeds. The film was originally a 3-D production and the version I watched still had the accompanying in your face shots but without the benefits of said technology. So during some of the kills, you get cheesy cartoonish effects like this:
So the main attending psychiatrist at the institution goes undercover, posing as a cross-country traveler and asking to stay at one of the sorority houses, claiming she is a former member to gain entry. Little do the sisters know that she was involved in what took place at the house years ago. In a flashback scene, during initiation week, the girls took aspiring members into the basement of the house, bending them over and doing the prerequisite whacking of paddles. The son of the house mother was caught snooping and the sisters dragged him back upstairs, tormenting him by making him drink alcohol while they all paraded around him, stripping off articles of clothing and showing him their assets. Oh what ghastly horror!! This was apparently too much for him to handle and he went apeshit. Taking a nail gun that was randomly lying around, he began capping his tormentors with only the psychiatrist surviving.
Not so hot on the case of the recent killings, is a smart mouthed, Coors pounding cop who arrested the traumatized nail gun wielding psycho years ago. He's initially skeptical when the psychiatrist comes to the station and pleads for help. He calls the hospital only to have them hide their fuck-up. When the psychiatrist comes back to the station for a 2nd time along with a local male newspaper reporter, the cop directs his ills towards him, yelling 'Get the fuck outta here. Just because the goddamn broad is good lookin', doesn't mean we ALL have to think with our dicks.'
The insitution finally dispatches two wisecracking nurses to the sorority house, as they relent and admit to their foul-up. As the sisters continue to be stalked and killed by the psycho, a final stand off is set-up between the nurses, the psychiatrist, the reporter and an unassuming house mother....
Silent Madness has all of the quality ingredients that make for a great 80's horror film: completely random, laugh out loud, coke fueled dialogue; 'incredible' effects and a totally nonsensical plot. A couple of the kill scenes were also pretty ingenious. As one of the sisters worked out in her room, hanging upside down from a swing, the killer took a rope to a dumbbell, tied the other end to her neck and sent it sailing through the second story window (FYI--its shown in the trailer below). Also, the wisecracking sheriff has to be one of the best bit characters ever to grace a horror film. He's worth the price of admission alone.
Cortez The Killer