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Body Melt/Review

From The Grindhouse Cinema Database

< Body Melt
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After taking an experimental dietary supplement, chemist Ryan (Robert Simper) begins to dissolve and mutate. After leaving an incomplete message he crashes into a parked car and dies. Having failed to warn the town, the unsuspecting residents of Pebbles Court take the pills that arrive free in their mailbox‘s. The results of which is melting skin, decomposing stomachs, inflated chocking tongues, penises that explode, collapsing heads, protruding facial tentacles, sentient mucus and bloodthirsty placentas.. Officer Sam Phillips (Gerard Kennedy) and Rookie cop Johnno (Andrew Daddo) begin to discover the link between the drug company Vimuville and the sickening meltdowns but not until virtually everyone in town is dead.

Body Melt was writer of cultural theory Philip Brophy’s first attempt at a feature film, and ultimately an unsuccessful crack at bringing contemporary horror/ exploitation back to the Australian mainstream. It was funded by the Australian Film Commission and Film Victoria. Interestingly many, if not most, of the main cast played roles in well known Australian soap opera “Neighbours" such as Gerard Kennedy, Ian Smith as Dr. Carrera, Regina Gaigalas as Shaan, Vincent Gil as Pud, Lesley Baker as Mack and Ben Geurens as Brandon Noble.

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Body Melt embodies many elements of contemporary exploitation & horror. The films plot and focus on the distortion and deterioration of the characters physical conditions, mark the film as a notable part of the body-horror sub genre. It stands out with few other Australian films of its kind, such as Undead (2003) as an attempt at a distinctly Australian Splatter film. The style and level of gore in the visual effects is comparable to Bad Taste (1987) and Braindead (1992).

Though not quite as much of a satire as it would first appear The sick, 'tongue in cheek' humor of Body melt is similar to Evil Dead 2 (1987) in that the films humorous undertone is most evident in its most horrific scenes. The horror is not well-crafted but so overt and tasteless as to be highly amusing and enjoyable. Beyond the gore it is also more coherent and engaging than many other similar exploitation films. Finally it should be noted that Body Melt is reportedly one of Quentin Tarantino’s favorite Australian films.

Reviewed by Thousand Eyes

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