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Frankenhooker

USA 1990
produced by
James Glickenhaus, Edgar Ievins for Ievins-Henenlotter, Shapiro-Glickenhaus Entertainment
directed by Frank Henenlotter
starring James Lorinz, Patty Mullen, Joseph Gonzalez, Carissa Channing, Louise Lasser, Helmar Augustus Cooper, Joanne Ritchie, J.J. Clark, Shirley Stoler, Beverly Bonner, John Zacherle, Max Brandt, David Lipman
written by Frank Henenlotter, Robert Martin

Frankenstein

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Jeffrey Franken (James Lorinz), always considered a weirdo since he is still living with his mum (Louise Lasser) & is conducting medical experiments in the garage, is engaged to Elizabeth (PAtty Mullen) ... when she is literally torn apart in a fatal lawnmower accident.

Jeffrey however cannot come over her death ... & he doesn't have to since with his knowledge of both medicine & electronics, & with the head of Elizabeth he has somehow nicked from the scene of her death, he figures he can resurrect her again ... thing is, he needs a) enough electricity to make his reanimation experiment work, & b) enough bodyparts to replace tose of Elizabeth that were mutilated too much in the lawnmower.

The solution to a) proves rather simple, since a thunderstorm (announced by John Zacherle) is supposed to hit Jeffrey's hometown in New Jersey in 3 days time - which leaves Jeffrey short of several bodyparts - but then he remembers a place were women sell their flesh in any quantity ... Times Square, Manhattan. Soon, too, Jeffrey has rounded up the hookers of pimp Zorro (Joseph Gonzalez), but he has second thoughts when his conscience sets in ... too late though, since the hookers have found his (literally) explosive crack, with which Jeffrey wanted to kill them in the first place, & suddenly Jeff finds himself amidst explosive hookers, with enough bodyparts for several women ... & he decides to take them all with him to revive them at an appropriate time.

When Jeff reanimates Elizabeth in the thunderstorm of course, something goes haywire & he not only revives her but aloso the hookers' bodyparts he keeps in a tank, & Elizabeth obviously shares some memories with her donors immediately knocks out Jeff & goes back to Times Square to pick up a trick (David Lipman) ... little does she know though that any sexual contact with her will blow up her mate - but confused as she is, she doesn't care too much, either.

Jeffrey has little problems tracking his fiancée down to a sleazy bar, but pimp Zorro notices the new girl too, & he soon makes a connection between Elizabeth - litterally carrying his brand -, the disappearence of his hookers & Jeffrey, the weird guy from Jersey. & he soon hits in her head so hard that it almost comes off - fortunately though Jeffrey can take her home just in time to take her home & fix the head on her body more securely ... & as a welcome sideeffect Elizabeth now is Elizabeth again, remembering her own past & everything. Jeffrey couldn't be happier, but unfortunately his happiness doesn't last long since Zorro has pursued him home & now decapitates him - as a punishment though Zoprro is torn apart by the bodyparts of his own hookers ...

That's not the end though, since HJeffrey has left behind notes on how to revive humans, & Elizabeth has studied them carefully, & now revives him as he has revived her - wioth only one sideeffect: since Jeffrey's experiments worked on an estrogene-base, Elizabeth had to revive him as a woman ...

 

One of the funniest mindless mad scientist-comedies (& quite frankly, there are not many funny ones around), this film works because of its director's great love & understanding to both the genre (without being overly derivative though) & to the sleazy side of Times Square, & because of its great central performaces by James Lorinz & Patty Mullen, who manage to give their characters a sensible dimension without becoming sentimental.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD