Pure Terror: The Undertaker and His Pals

December 13, 2014 at 3:50 pm Leave a comment

The title of this movie makes me think of only one thing, The Undertaker! The Phenom, The Man from the Darkside! The one and only WWF/WWE Professional Wrestler whom is arguably one of the most popular performers of all time. When I saw this movie was made in 1966, I realized there was no way The Dead Man would be making an appearance in this movie. My hope was that the movie would be just good enough for WWE Studios to do a remake featuring The Undertaker. He has appeared in movies before, namely Suburban Commando. They are looking for a way to make a nickel anywhere they can. Then I watched The Undertaker and His Pals. This movie should have never been made, much less remade.

Whenever I review a comedy, I always hammer home the point that comedy is subjective. What I find funny, you make not and vice versa. But if you found anything in this movie funny, I seriously have to question your mental stability. The sense of humor seems to be inspired by 60’s era Mad Magazines (which I have read) but poorly done. The concepts are very punny with a bit of a dark sense of humor. Or perhaps just coated in darkness. This comes close to being the worst movie on this set. Although I could go back and forth on that.

The movie starts with some bikers murdering a girl. You could think this is the Undertaker during his Bikertaker phase but quickly things get so horrid that any thoughts of wrestling quickly disappear. The girls family meets with the undertaker, named Mort. His deal is that he offers the lease expensive funeral prep in town. But all the normal, decent things you would expect from caring for the dearly departed and making them presentable for the showing are individual upsell items that he sticker shocks you with at the last minutes. If you don’t pay him, you’re loved one get presented on the day of their funeral rotting in a shipping box, carelessly stuffed in. This could only be funny to a person who has never had a loved one die. The murdered girls name was Sally Lamb. This will be important in a bit.

We cut to dating couple Harry Glass and Anne Poultry. They find their way into a small diner. I will give production design credit, this place looks gross. Almost too gross. To the point were it’s hard to believe anyone would eat here. The only item of the menu is Leg of Lamb. Sally Lamb had her legs removed by her killers. Get it. They order the leg of lamb and complain when the dish they served is clearly not leg of lamb or anything edible for that matter. Harry and Anne leave immediately. The waiter and the cook feel insulted. These two characters place gross, demented people and they did manage to creep me out. You can chalk that up to good acting or perhaps the director just found two genuine creeps and put them in his movie.

So feeling insulted, the restaurateurs hop on their motorcycles, stalk Anne, then kill her. The special on the menu for the next day is Chicken Breast. Because her last name was poultry. And this is the moment this movie completely lost me. I could have cared less about anything that happened in this rest of this film. In a movie, the bad guys are suppose to do bad things. Then you want to hero to get back at them for all the bad things they have done. What makes me so angry about this should be obvious but I will explain it. The filmmakers made a conscious decide to have a character get her breast cut off then play it up for comedic effect. I am not laughing. The punishment we should want to see the hero dish out to these guys should be something in the ball park of setting them on fire and watching them burn to a pile of ashes while they beg for their lives. But because this is an unappealing, poorly made, low budget movie with unlikable characters and a script written on a cocktail napkin (if it was written at all) I know that’s not going to happen. I can just tell from everything about this piss poor film that Harry Glass is not the hero we need to give these characters their comeuppance. Harry Callahan would be more like it.

The Undertaker tries to upsell Harry on Anne’s funeral and gets a beating for stuffing her in a shipping crate. It wasn’t a particularly well done beating. Harry quickly gets over Anne’s death and starts dating a girl named Friday. Then dates her twin sister Thursday. And who really cares at this point. This movie is disgusting but not in the way a well made horror film should be. It’s disgusting because it was made by people with a terrible sense of humor. Prospective filmmakers should feel encouraged though. Somehow, this movie got made. It was in drive-in theaters. It’s on dvd. It exists. There is hope for your script yet. Because if this can get made, anything can get made. Someone heard this idea, gave the filmmakers money, and they hired people to go out and make it. Never doubt that you can do it too.

I would speculate that director TLP Swicegood is really just Ray Dennis Steckler or Herschell Gordon Lewis but their is no evidence to support that. This movie feels very much like their style of film and,sad to say, this movie fits a genre of movies made in the 60’s and 70’s. Films that pretended to be horror or comedy but were little more than thinly veiled porn or exploitation films. The Undertaker and his Pals fits this type of movie. I wouldn’t recommend anyone watch this movie. I would recommend that that wrestler The Undertaker takes everyone involved with this movie and throws them off the Hell in the Cell. I don’t care if they are in their 90’s now. It would be the only positive to come out of this movie were that to happen. That said, this may not be the worst movie on the Pure Terror box set.

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Entry filed under: Comedy, Horror. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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