‘Bad Biology’

Bad Biology

Bad Biology (2008) — Directed by Frank Henenlotter. Starring Charlee Danielson, Anthony Sneed, ‘Rude’ Jude Angelini, Eleonore Hendricks, Vinnie Paz, Reef the Lost Cause, Bjorn Milz, Vicky Wiese, J-Zone, Remedy, Tina Krause, Jelena Jensen, James Glickenhaus.

If you’re put off by a movie that opens with the main character stating, “I was born with seven clits”, or the other main character later exclaiming, “I got a drug-addicted dick with a mind of its own!” then you might want to skip this movie, and this review. But if you’re up for a movie that takes you on a campy ride through the world of a pair of sexually mutated human beings, then you must check out Frank Henenlotter’s Bad Biology.

Jennifer (Charlee Danielson) is a woman with seven clitorises, that she knows of, who feeds on sex like it’s food. Her metabolism, perhaps working to support a sex drive accelerated by her seven clits, operates so quickly that not only does she have to wolf food down like an animal after every sexual encounter, she also conceives, gestates, and gives birth to what she calls “fake, unfinished freak babies” two hours after copulating. During her quest to find men that satisfy her intensely advanced libido, she often kills her mate during climax. “Oops.”

Is there anyone who can fulfill her freakishly insatiable needs? Enter Batz (Anthony Sneed), a man who is a slave to the ravenous sex drive of an enormous, sentient (though mute) penis. The two foot long dick is addicted to steroids, literally slurping down liquid drugs like a child drinking a milkshake. Poor Batz does not enjoy being controlled by his drug-addicted penis but he goes to great lengths to satisfy its enormous cravings. What will happen when our twisted pair of sexual misfits finally cross paths?

Only a certain type of horror fan is likely to enjoy a Frank Henenlotter film and I count myself among them. His films are bizarre, gory, campy, low budget, and entertaining as hell. He directed the classic and vital Basket Case, the hilarious Frankenhooker, and the twisted Brain Damage. The acting in a Hennenlotter film can be so charmingly bad that it ventures into brilliance. The effects, all practical as far as I can tell, are similarly unconvincing but still creative enough to be delightfully disturbing. The tone of his films sits somewhere between the absurdity of Stuart Gordon and the self-aware camp of Troma, which is not meant to give compliment to Troma in any way. Whereas Troma’s film come off as juvenile and trying way too hard, Frank’s films are heartfelt and, though you may scoff, intelligent.

Bad Biology is Frank’s return to film after a fifteen year hiatus. It is as absurd and over the top and as wonderful as one could hope for. He puts things on the screen you’ve never dreamt of in your darkest, most secret and twisted thoughts. You’ll see vagina masks, a woman experiencing a non-stop orgasm, and a masturbation machine conceived out of Rube Goldberg’s nightmares. And what Batz uses as lube will leave you squirming. Are you still with me? Good. How about a two foot long penis busting through the floorboards and baseboards of an apartment complex full of half-naked porn stars, raping them until they give in to the experience? Did I lose you there? I don’t know what to tell you other than drug-addicted cocks see things in a purple tint.

It might also surprise you to hear that the dialogue is sharp and really funny. Co-written by an obscure (to me) rapper named R. A. the Rugged Man, he brings a delightful cleverness and vibrancy to the language of Bad Biology. Speaking of obscure rappers, you’ll find several of them here alongside a couple of Penthouse Pets and other randoms that you’ll probably never see elsewhere. You’ll also run into investment professional, film director, and gear-head James Glickenhaus as well as Wu Tang pal Remedy. Are they great actors? No. Are their performances raw and endearing? You bet. I was captivated by the style and cadence the rapper J-Zone brought to the dialogue during his brief performance as Batz’s drug dealer. During the same scene actress and photographer Eleonore Hendricks gives a passionate performance as a crack addict screaming at her boyfriend for her “jimmy jet”, whatever the hell that is. It’s a random bit that seems to serve little purpose, but it is mesmerizing.

The main characters are played by actors who, according to their IMDB pages, have starred in nothing else. Danielson takes on the role of a woman who experiences coitus like nobody else on the planet so she really has to, um, work her ass off during her sex scenes and she delivers. Far from titillating, her frenzied orgasms are like nothing you’ve ever seen. Sneed, who looks like Tom Cruise and sounds like Mark Whalberg, probably has the most wooden performance in Bad Biology, but he still manages to elicit as much sympathy as you can probably muster for someone with an out of control penis.

Frank’s work since Bad Biology has been relegated to a couple of documentaries that I haven’t seen but look worth checking out. Still, I hope he continues producing his own unique brand of deranged exploitation in the future. If you’re inclined to get a couple of Frank’s films under your belt, you might want to start with Basket Case but Bad Biology would make for a great second stop.

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