Mar 29, 2008

Last House on Dead End Street

When Roger Watkin's turned his drug binge into a film, It holds the record for being an instant cult classic. His exploitation film, The Last House on Dead End Street, was another of the misleading titles that point all towards unneeded bloodshed and nudity, when in this film, is not the main point. The film takes an approach of displaying blood as the ultimate payback for the belligerent Terry Hawkins, who was just released from prison.

Due to his drug charges, Mr. Hawkins was locked up for some time. Upon being released, he puffs on a cigarette, and sets his horrible plot in motion. For the most part, the film develops like most of the timeless cinema of its age; clunky and gritty. I honestly couldn't be more happy with the finished product. For a film that cost only $800 dollars, It works to advantage entirely. Hell, since Watkins got three thousand dollars, he decided to blow most of it on his amphetamines.

The film not only created an exploitation that involved a fanatical blow to the film market and created a venomous main character who wasn't even a good guy. Normally most films pave way for some optimism. After discussing his failed porno films, Terry decides to film a snuff movie, cause that is what people really want to see. His very words sent shivers down my spine, cause, let's face it. If you watched this film, It's because of the violence.

"Don't feed the drug-child"

As the primary audience, we are catering to this exaggerated whim of Terry. The Last House on Dead End Street could even be prophetical similar to Arthur C. Clarke's work. Besides having the conventional "One good guy and One bad guy," this film tends to show both opposing forces in an evil light. We got the maniacal blood-lusting aspiring film-maker, and we got the Jewish studio representative who refuses to market Terry's work.

It has also been recently revealed that ToeTag Pictures is working on a sequel to this film, conveniently after Watkin's death. This plan to put a sequel to a film that needs none, let alone doesn't even carry a proper timeline, is inconceivable. It's almost as bad as ToeTag revealing their plans to make a sequel to The Redsin Tower.

The film was originally billed as starring/written/directed by different people, when it was in fact Watkins himself. So when you see that devilish gleam in Hawkin's eyes, you can see the drugs effect on his unstable mind. Perhaps one of the more artful scenes, was in a fetishist's apartment. It shows a married woman being whipped by a hunchback in Blackface. Too bad more sleaze couldn't be like this.

The Last House on Dead End Street is a film sumptuous with negative energy. This is a film that breeds the thoughts of economic distrust. The title is deceiving, but don't let it get the best of you. With the conditions of his film making process in mind, It saddens me to think of him as an accidental filmmaker, but until i see proof of substance in his other films, my case stands.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This film is a sleazy, grimey, foul piece of cinematic garbage and I love it! Great review. I reviewed this one as well a while back, I think we agree on the film for the most part.