Spike and Mike's "Sick and Twisted Festival of Animation" returns to the Coolidge Corner Theater this month to keep college students and rebellious highschool kids giggling at the disgusting and the perverted. The show includes 32 of the worst things you could show to your baby brother or sister, including 14 new films not shown in previous festivals.
As the audience is warned before the film starts, this is the sick and twisted show, not the artsy-fartsy family show producers Spike and Mike also put together. At first, the warning seems unnecessary; the festival begins with relatively tame selections such as "No Neck Joe," starring a little boy with (you guessed it) no neck, and "Brian's Brain," about a boy trying to live without any flesh covering his frontal lobes.
It doesn't take long for the humor to escalate from the simple childish cruelty of Brian getting a paper airplane stuck in his brain to the blatant toilet humor of "Puke a Pound" and "Farting to the Favorites." This, of course leads into the most popular bathroom humor duo, Beavis and Butthead.
Placing Beavis and Butthead on the cover of the advertisement flyer apparentlybrought a new crowd into the theater. AmatuerBeavis impersonators repetitively declared what"sucked" and what was "cool" during the show,especially when the MTV stars themselves were onthe screen. This was the kind of behaviorencouraged by Spike himself at the beginning ofthe show and after the intermission.
But even Beavis and Butthead splattering frogswith baseball bats seemed mild in comparison tothe three crude and disturbing "Classic BonusFilms" by Mike Grimshaw.
"Quiet Please" and "Sittin' Pretty," involvethe same characters, who scream, defecate, curse,kill and make cannibalistic cakes. The third film,"Deep Sympathy," set in a funeral parlor, involvesevery kind of sexual and social act that a personcan imagine, and even some that no one shouldimagine. The only reassurance for the audience isthe divine intervention at the end, which attemptsto make up for the unsettling humor.
Among the new films in the show are "HospitalHell" featuring "Rick the Dick," a characterdestined to become popular for his mumbling cursesand senseless spite. David Koresh makesappearances in two films, "Chainsaw Bob in a CULTClassic," and the latest "Nana and Lil' Puss" filmin which Nana goes to Heaven.
While these films are made with great, if sick,creative energy, many of them lack visual polish.The exception to this, probably placed in the showonly for this reason, is "Infrared RosesRevisited," a tribute to the Grateful Dead. Thisis also the only flick in the bunch that cannot becalled sick, cruel, perverted, or disgusting.
"Infrared Roses Revisited" has excellent,smoothly moving images of the Grateful Dead Skullthat would have been more interesting without theBeavis impersonators in the back yelling "thissucks."
The "Sick and Twisted Festival of Animation" isa show inspired by junior-high cruelty, toilethumor and childish revenge fantasies. Cute birdsare smashed with hammers, the Roman god of fecesmakes an appearance, and David Koresh is pureed bya chainsaw. Only a select bunch have stomachssolid enough to sit through the whole show.
Fortunately for them there are enough peoplelike that in the Boston area to support the show.Although it's not for everyone, the Festival isone of the best of it's kind. Die-hard fans mightbe disappointed, since more than half of thecartoons are lifted from earlier festivals. Butfor those who haven't seen the show before, it'sworthwhile (especially if you haven't eatenrecently) simply to experience a guilty, queasylaugh at the expense of the animated characters