BAD BIOLOGY (2008) Review by Steve Kirkham



3 stars. Severin Films. Special Edition 4K UHD/Blu Ray. 26th February

Frank Henenlotter has never been noted for his subtlety – and BAD BIOLOGY does nothing to dispel that view. This was his return to the director’s chair after a significant hiatus – his last film prior to this being BASKET CASE 3 in 1991. He is probably best known for the BASKET CASE trilogy and FRANKENHOOKER (1990). Always presenting his own uncompromising and somewhat weird world view – if you know his work you know what to expect!

Jennifer (a committed, all-in performance from Charlee Danielson) tells us that she was born with seven clitorises. She is a photographer and a raging nympho who constantly craves sexual satisfaction – often ending up killing her paramours as she climaxes. She also captures the faces of her lovers as they orgasm with her camera. Not weird at all! Adding to this, she becomes pregnant and gives birth to deformed offspring just hours after having intercourse – she heartlessly discards the babies without a second thought.

Meanwhile, across town we have Batz (Anthony Steed), who injects steroids into his penis – which had been reattached after being accidentally amputated, and now is a huge member with a life of it’s own! A drug addict, he also has a growing need for sex… of course, ultimately, these mutated individuals are destined to meet – what could possibly go wrong? Especially after his manhood detaches itself and goes on a rampage. We aren’t watching a Disney movie that’s for sure!

Clearly created on a low budget, Henenlotter has made another crazy curiosity. Part horror, part twisted comedy, part sex film this isn’t entirely successful narratively and is more like a series of outrageous scenes strung together than a cohesive storyline.

Co-written by Henenlotter and hip hop artist R.A. “Rugged Man” Thorburn, the film is never remotely believable, has variable acting and is probably best viewed as an often shocking and over the top comedy than anything else. It features rubbery creations from Gabe Bartalos – often a close collaborator with the director.

EXTRAS 4 stars

You get 2 commentaries on the UHD – one with Henenlotter, Nick Deeg and Anthony Sneed and an archival one with Henenlotter and Thorburn.

On the Blu Ray you get the same commentaries and a whole bunch of other special features: Spook House (30 mins) tells about the creepy mansion used as the filming location – which was apparently haunted. Interviewing Henenlotter and Thorburn, production coordinator Michael Shershenovich, Nick Deeg, retired detective David Henenlotter and production manager Chaz Kangas.

A rather odd and short, 3 minute interview with Charlee Danielson… and a basketball – from 2006.

Plus Interviews with Deeg and Sneed in conversation (66 mins); Make Up FX creator Gabe Bartalos (11 mins); 31 minutes of behind the scenes footage; Photographer Clay Patrick McBride shooting the photos used in the movie in Henenlotter’s apartment (7 mins); a weird short called Suck, written, edited and directed by Anthony Sneed (11 mins); a music video from Thorburn and an Image Gallery.

Steve Kirkham