Impulse Buy Theater - Deathgasm
Check out part 1 of our Down Under trilogy, Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead, here!
For part 2 of our Impulse Buy Theater Down Under trilogy, we hang a right…or is it a left…well, that depends on if we’re facing north or south…[GET ON WITH IT! – Ed.] Anyway, we’re heading over to New Zealand for…DEATHGASM!
Going through the special features of the disc, director Jason Lei Howden cites Peter Jackson’s early films as his biggest influence for DEATHGASM (in all caps…because lower case is for pussies). [And I’m sure Mr. Howden won’t mind you ripped that right out of his script. – Ed.] Now, to be fair, I haven’t seen any of Jackson’s early works of horror…but…I dunno…here, take a look at what I mean and see if you don’t end up agreeing. The basic plot for DEATHGASM is two metalheads, Zakk and Brodie, are entrusted with The Black Hymn after finding its reclusive protector, metal legend Rikki Daggers. The Black Hymn is a song that, if played, will usher in a demonic horde that will conquer the living in order to resurrect the king of all demons, Aeloth. Daggers has gone into hiding because there’s a sect out to bring about this resurrection. So…naturally, Zakk and Brodie play it and then spend the remainder of the movie working to put their soul-eating genie back in the bottle…so to speak. It’s more like killing a bunch of demonically possessed townsfolk while searching for a way to undo all this and prevent the coming of Aeloth. Does this sound like a little movie where a group of college students discover an ancient Sumerian burial text, bound in human flesh and inked in blood, the Necronomicon Ex Mortis, and, when passages from it are read, a demonic evil is unleashed?
If you deduced from that brief description that I’m referring to Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead films, well, then you truly belong here. [And may God have mercy on your soul. – Ed.] In all seriousness, this film, while different in the details, walks the same hallowed ground as Mr. Raimi’s work. And that’s not a negative, in fact, it’s a HUGE positive. DEATHGASM captures the tone of “splatstick” perfectly and really is a true spiritual successor of the Evil Dead franchise. While there’s no Bruce Campbell equivalent here, it’s very easy to sympathize with Brodie quickly, especially coming from the background I did. Sure, I wasn’t a metalhead in high school, but being a dyed in the wool nerd forced me to follow a very similar path. Though, sadly, I had no Medina. Medina is Brodie’s crush and starts off the film as your stereotypical popular high school girl. She’s dating a jock (who just happens to be Brodie’s dickhead cousin), listens to rap and pop and is very much a preppie poster child. It’s her curiosity and sympathy for Brodie that allows him to expose her to metal and thus begin the transformation she’ll undergo throughout the length of the film. Don’t get the idea that she’ll end up the film’s damsel in distress. Oh no…she’s mighty handy with an ax.
Axes, chainsaws, gallons upon gallons of fake blood…and dicks. God, there are a lot of dicks in this movie. Not like ‘man, that guy’s a dick’…nope…penises. Don’t get me wrong, we get a few scenes with some breasts, so we totally ace the 3 B’s metric, and there’s an especially nice pair near the end of the film…but seriously, a double ended dildo used as nunchucks, a demonic wang meeting its demise via a weaponized weed whacker, vibrators shoved through the ears and into the brain, oh, and let’s not forget the dildo repeatedly shoved into the mouth and through the back of the head. I mean, seriously, there’s enough dick in this picture where John Thomas should get a headliner credit. [Let’s see how many people get that reference. – Ed.]
Another easy influence to spot is the Adult Swim show Metalocalypse…in fact, that’d be a damn fine title for the film were it not already taken! In fact, given that The Black Hymn is supposed to endow those that play it and summon Aeloth with Ultimate Power…one could almost think that this could be a potential alternate origin for Dethklok…with Metalocalypse showing what would’ve happened had the garage band Deathgasm accepted Aeloth’s power…as opposed to saving the world.
God, there’s so much to say about this movie, but to be honest, I want you to stop reading this thing right now and find a copy of DEATHGASM…and watch it…like NOW! Trust me, you’ll understand why I’m writing the title in nothing but caps. There hasn’t been anything like this movie in quite some time…and since I waiting to get my mitts on Ash vs. The Evil Dead season 1…man, is this a damn fine substitute!