Andy Warhol's Bad 2.0 stars

Andy Warhol's Bad movie poster

Not really an Andy Warhol nor even a Paul Morrissey movie, but rather a Jed Johnson. (Who is he, you wonder? He's a veteran of the sound department on the Warhol-Morrissey movies, promoted herewith to the director's chair.) The undiscriminating misanthropy, the grotesque comedy, and the boringly belligerent tastelessness owe a lot to John Waters, Curt McDowell, and above all, the bard of the Bronx, George Kuchar. The exaggerated dollhouse decor and petty bourgeois pathos have been cribbed, probably, from Rainer Werner Fassbinder. The acting, at least, is in the old Warhol idiom (nasal, phlegmatic, insincere), even if the cast is more in the mainstream (Perry King, Susan Tyrrell, Stefania Casini, Carroll Baker). As a penny-pinching Queens matron who runs an at-home electrolysis parlor and a dial-an-assassin operation on the side, Baker is appearing in her first American film in a decade, and she has perhaps her best-ever vehicle for her tense, harsh, overemphatic, bitchy voice: "Why do we have all these leaflets here? I told you to leave them in laundrymats, supermarkets, places women will see them. Why can't you use your own initiative?" 1977.

Duncan Shepherd

  • Rated R

This movie is not currently in theaters.

Comments

Jay Allen Sanford Sept. 23, 2009 @ 10:29 a.m.

Yikes! Felt like I needed a shower when this 1977 dankfest was done --- it reminded me of early John Waters, but with more bitter and less sweet. I almost turned it off a few times - I especially can't handle violence against animals - but then I'd catch some Mike Bloomfield music or hear a great line and decide to stick it out.

I've seen Carroll Baker from the original Lolita get pretty scuzzy late in her career, but this one was a shocker. And what a trip to see Susan Tyrell - who I just recently watched in the early Oingo Boingo brothers cult flick Forbidden Zone - as the lone "good guy" in the whole flick (SPOILER ALERT: Well, until she drops her mongoloid baby in shock from finding Baker's corpse - END SPOILER).

I think I get what the movie is saying RE rampant (& seemingly contagious) immorality overtaking both decency and sanity, especially circa '77 NYC (a cesspool indeed, and a favorite destination of my own as a teen living in nearby CT).

However, I feel like-minded movies such as Jules Feiffer's Little Murders, those cynical Death Wish and Magnum Force movies (and even The Warriors) were far less abhorrant (and less abberrant) in the way they portrayed the inevitable psycho-decline of both civility and civilization itself.

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