Sunday, October 19, 2014

The MONTH of HORROR - Day 19: The Toxic Avenger

I tell ya, Tromaville, New Jersey is one heck of a fictional town, overflowing with crime, and chemical waste! It's a place that could only really exist within the confines of the Troma movie universe where anything goes, especially if it's exceedingly violent and gory. This flick is far less about scares of any sort, and more about truck loads of blood, torn appendages, melting flesh, and squished brains.

Ultra low budget, Z-grade films are a favourite of mine simply because you have to admire the people who make movies like these. They don't have the financing but they roll with it anyway, usually friends working together to churn out something that may be ridiculous, and look incredibly cheap but overflowing with charm, and creativity.

A large portion of the story takes place in the Tromaville Health Centre which has to be the coolest, and craziest fitness club to ever grace the screen. Folks nonchalantly smoke weed, and cigarettes while working out, dudes are selling smack out of their lockers, and couples get it on in the change rooms--this is definitely not your local YMCA! Our hero of the flick, Mitch, begins his story as the dorky, socially awkward gym janitor who is relentlessly teased and bullied by the numerous sociopathic a-hole members. One prank ends with Mitch being so humiliated that he leaps out of a second story window, and winds up crashing into an open barrel of bubbling, green toxic sludge. Chemical waste in movies has a way of transforming the human into the superhuman, and that is precisely what happens here as skinny, young Mitch becomes the hulking, mutated brute... The Toxic Avenger!

A janitor superhero is probably not something you've ever seen in the Marvel, or DC universe, so naturally the Avenger decides to take it upon himself to clean up the cesspool that is Tromaville, one junkie, psychopath gym rat, and corrupt politician at a time--he even finishes his victims off by ramming a mop down their throats. The evil, scheming mayor will become his main nemesis, and what a character this guy is! Grotesquely overweight, he keeps a special private room at the health centre where he certainly does not work out but instead conducts the majority of his business lying half-naked on a table, surrounded by hero sandwiches, and being massaged by topless women--Jabba the Hutt never had it so good. Mitch/The Toxic Avenger does gain a love interest, a beautiful young blonde woman who happens to be blind, so she only sees the inner beauty of this horribly ugly monster, and when her life is threatened, he must swing in to the rescue!

Oh yeah, it's cheesy as all get out, extremely gory at times (dog lovers be warned!), and certainly not for everyone but if you're down for checking out a groovy 80's superhero flick unlike you've ever seen before then what's the hold up? The entire movie has been uploaded onto YouTube as well, so set aside 85 minutes and give it a go!

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