At some point in the future, in fact, I may actually write an entire novel (or at least, novella) about "The Bad Movie Contest," because it, in itself, is really worthy of coverage in so many ways. But while sushirob is still demurring a bit, and doesn't want to admit that I am, indeed the Super Grandmaster All-Time Universal Champion, we finally watched "Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter" last night and it is, without a doubt, the WORST movie we've ever seen.
Now, we've seen "Dolemite" which was a semi-low-budget 70's film where the walls of the sets wobbled back and forth like cardboard, and where, in a fight scene, the "BIFF" sound of hitting someone was followed by a perceptible pause before the person actually went down (or, as in our favorite case, visibly jumped backwards into the trunk of a car), and where the dialog consisted of stunning and philosophically rich statements such as "You're going to have to TAKE me!"
We've seen the Japanese Anime "Kekko Kamen" in which a naked, masked, super-heroine fights the forces of injustice with lightning that flies out of her crotch.
We've seen "America 3000" in which the language of post-apocalyptic Earth has evolved to contain such linguistically improbably elocutions as "Neggie more plutarchs" and where women rule and keep men as breeders.
We have suffered through all thirty-two hours of the 1978 "Star Wars Holiday Special" complete with Diahann Carroll as Wookiee porn queen, Harvey Korman as an alien Julia Child, Beatrice Arthur as the owner of the Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy cantina, and Art Carney as some sort of Intergalactic trader. This amazing work of art features the musical stylings of Bea Arthur, Carrie Fisher, and Jefferson Starship, and is performed almost exclusively in Wookiee without subtitles.
We have seen, and I am not making this up, "Jekyll and Hyde: The Musical," starring David Hasslehoff in the title role. We have seen "Space Mutiny" whose jacket declares, "Breathtaking Special Effects From the Team That Brought You 'STAR WARS,'" and whose special effects consist of space scenes cut and pasted directly from the old Battlestar Galactica series.
We've even seen "Plan 9 from Outer Space" wherein Bela Lugosi died halfway through the filming and was replaced by an actor about two feet taller than he and blonde who holds his cape in front of his face for close-ups, and wherein the spaceships crashing in flames are obviously paper plates strung on a visible string, and which is widely considered to be "The Worst Movie Of All Time" by many assorted critics and experts.
But, and I tell you this with supreme confidence, "Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter" tops them all. I shall now attempt to share this experience with you, complete with parenthetical notes on commentary by sushirob, banshree, Charlie, Niki, and myself, during the watching of the film, in the hopes that you will get to share in our experience in some small way.
The movie opens with pictures of people with picket signs reading "The End is Near" and "Jesus is Coming" marching around Ottawa. The film quality is not much better than Super-8. It's fuzzy and jerky and has almost a documentary quality to it. So much so, in fact, that one of our group even asked, "Is this a documentary?" thinking, perhaps, that we had put in the wrong DVD by mistake.
But no. It was no mistake. The 70's porn film "wakka wakka bow bow" music which accompanied said opening scene made that fairly clear. This was merely to be a premonition of the horror to come.
("What the hell year was this made?" Charlie asked.
I looked at the DVD jacket. "2001."
Everyone made various noises expressing their incredulity.
"Maybe," I said, "they made it in 1975, but they were really really stoned, and then they just realized in 2001, 'Heyyyyy, duuuuude, man, we never like, copyrighted the movie man,' and so that's where that copyright date came from."
This seemed as satisfactory an explanation as any.)
Suddenly, and without warning, the scene shifted to a wild-eyed, bearded man with long black hair and beard who burst out of some bushes in front of a house, waving a Bible (or what appeared to be a Bible) and pronouncing things such as "THIS is the empty house of your SOUL!" whilst occasionally flipping through his black book in order to back up statements like, "As written in the GOSPEL of MATTHEW, verses something something, BEHOLD, for the knock on the door is as a FLAME with junebugs UPON THEM."
Of course, that's a paraphrase, because I honestly don't remember the verses he quoted, nor the numbers, but that gives you the general idea.
Cut to a street scene. A tall, nice looking, young black priest (complete with collar), approaches a stocky white man with a mohawk consisting of 12-inch bright crimson, gravity-defying spikes, and addresses him as "Father Alban" or "Father Avelino" or something similar. I should mention that at some point around here, (either before or after this -- the details are hazy) there was a night scene in which a lesbian vampire sucks the blood from a young woman who is either a nurse or a pizza delivery gal (we couldn't really figure that out) and then steals her car. sushirob says that this is the opening scene, but I could have sworn it opened with the picketers.
Anyway, the priests discuss the EEEEEVIL running amok, and Father Mohawk agrees that they have but one hope. Another priest speeds up on a little scooter, and tosses Father Mohawk a motorcycle helmet inscribed with the words "LIVE TO PRAY" and which has been conveniently cut out in a slit along the top such that the helmet will not crush the Reverend Father's Holy Hair Spikes. Indeed, the Church provides.
The two speed off (well, move off) riding tandem on the little blue scooter and end up on the beach, where a bearded man in a white robe appears to be baptizing a young woman in the lake. At their approach, the bearded man drops the woman (wearing a white cotton shirt with a black bra underneath) into the water, and goes to greet his faithful.
They address him as Lord, which gives the more insightful among us the sense that perhaps, this is the Jesus Christ named in the film's title. Ah yes. Now we're moving along. Jesus offers them lemonade from a bottle. "Will there be enough?" one asks. "There will be enough," he replies with a smile, perhaps thinking back to the feeding of the five thousand. Oh, the subtle nuances of this film! They talk, and the Lord says that he may not leave, for he is building the foundations of his father's house and how can the walls stand without the solid foundation? This is illustrated by a lovely little sandcastle city, which Jesus waves to by way of example.
Suddenly, a black-booted foot CRUSHES part of the sand castle! We look up, and LO! It is the three lesbian vampires! But it's broad daylight! Something must be terribly wrong!
[to be continued ...]