We are all interested in bad movies, inexcusable cinema, worse-than-mediocre pictures, and go-go-dancing, for that is the stuff we use to fill the empty spaces in our souls. You are interested in the unknown, the mysterious, and the frustrating—that is why you are here. And now, for the first time, we are bringing to you the full story of some of the worst movies ever made. We are bringing you all the evidence, based only on the secret testimony of the miserable soul who survived a screening. I am that miserable soul. The absurdly low budgets, the cramped studio apartment locations, the ridiculous plots, the suggestive soda pop drinking—my friend, we cannot keep these a secret any longer. Let us punish the guilty. Let us reward those who would lasciviously drink Coca-Cola straight from the bottle! Remember, my friends: terrible movies such as these will affect you in the future!
Something Weird Video precedes all of their tapes and discs with an intro that consists of crazy clips from their films edited into an even crazier montage. One standout clip is from Smell of Honey. Actress Stacey Walker sits up on a bed covered suggestively with a sheet and snarks at her sad-looking lesbian roommate, “I may be a BITCH, but I’ll never be a BUTCH.” Walker then laughs maniacally. You, gentle reader, can enjoy this “world-famous” opener right here:
After watching that video introduction countless times, I vowed to see this film.
The Plot In Brief: Sharon Winters (Stacey Walker) has an interesting relationship with the men that she dates. She leads them on with posing and kissing and hugging and touching until they reach a state of crazy arousal, then rejects them flat, claiming that she is not that type of girl. The frustrated beau then either retreats into a blue-ball shadow world, never to be heard from again, OR advances aggressively—at which point Sharon cries rape and sees that the young man goes to jail. Sharon frustrates the hell out of everyone around her, including strangers, co-workers, roommates, and a nice young man named Lowell (Sam Melville, acting under the pseudonym Neville Coward) who actually seems to want a normal relationship. Lowell is rewarded for his patience in courting Sharon by falling so deeply into her web that he receives a bullet in the heart for his trouble. Will Sharon continue her wanton life of using and discarding men?
Ghostbusters! Even in this early effort, we see Kovacs playing around with depth of field, interesting shot compositions, evocative lighting, and actual night shooting. The black-and-white cinematography is crisp and clean, even in Something Weird’s sometimes battered print. Kovacs shows us what a difference it can make, even in a low-budget film, if an audience can ACTUALLY, CLEARLY SEE WHAT IS BEING PHOTOGRAPHED. Eureka.
The film’s music is very much “of its time.” Some of the main themes become so repetitive that I wondered if the filmmakers were doing this on purpose to stress the repetitive nature of protagonist Sharon Winters’ game or if, being a low-budget film, they only had so much music with which to work. A late sequence in the film features a hip and swinging garage band; Friedman gleefully admits he cajoled them into appearing in the film for free to gain exposure for their music. Ka-ching!
My friend, you have now read this column, based on my own sworn testimony. Can you prove that this film doesn’t exist? Perhaps on your way home a lovely, mysterious girl with odd, arched eyebrows will pass you in the dark, and you will never know it, but she just might be Stacey Walker, offering you either a smell of honey OR a swallow of brine! Have you ever drunk brine? I thought not! Many scientists believe that bad movies are being filmed at this very moment. We once laughed at fire, the wheel, gravity, wrongful prosecution, the telephone, and the 1960s. So much laughter! And now some of us laugh at very bad movies. God help us in the future.