Norma manages to stumble her way into a room with an even fatter dead woman sitting in a chair collecting cobwebs, with a couple other more decomposed bodies beside her. Once again, Norma doesn't freak out at all, because hey, at least they're not tiny and cute. She continues to run on with no particular direction and ends up in a room that looks like it was left over from a cheap 1960's outer space TV show. Thrax uses an intercom to tell her to lift her arms, which she does. A magnet pulls her dress over her head, leaving her in her black undergarment. The dress then falls to the ground and instantly bursts into flames. Let me run that one by you again: her dress is lifted off of her body by a magnet and then spontaneously combusts. I'll be the first to admit that I'm not up on women's fashion, but since when did they start making dresses out of iron and nitro glycerine? This has got to be the most blatant excuse to get the female lead down to her underwear that I have ever seen, and that's saying something. As Thrax berates her for her slutty choice of underwear, Norma pleads to be released on the grounds that she has an important meeting with a client who wants her to design the new ad campaign for his beer. I have to say, that's a new one. Usually it's, "Don't kill me, I can pay you," or "Don't kill me, I have a family!" Very rarely do you hear, "Don't kill me, I'll be late for a beer promo!" Lo and behold, Thrax lets her out of the room, and the first thing she does is run through the house in her underwear until she finds a phone, which she uses to try to call to reschedule the beer appointment. That's right, she doesn't call the cops or a friend who can help her - she calls to reschedule a business meeting. You have to give this movie one thing: it's unconventional. You also have to remember that the conventions are there for a damn good reason.
Thrax gets back in his wheelchair and goes looking for Norma. When he finds her, he invites her to dinner and explains that he is immortal. For some reason, he feels the need to do this while trying his best to sound like one of the Pepperpots from Monty Python. Somehow, his tale of lust and humanity lost sort of loses some of its effect when he's squawking like a cockney chicken. After a brief scene of Jervis eating pizza (really), we cut back to Thraxstone Hall to find Norma chained to a chair at the dining table. Once again, such questions as how she was rendered unconscious and who brought her there are left to the philosophers, those crazy bastards. Thrax wheels himself on down to the other end of the table, where he pours a couple glasses of "champagne." I have to say, I'm a little confused by this, since we already saw him pour the champagne. I'd say it was a preview of a later scene, but the dialogue is different. You have to wonder what happened to those first few glasses of viscous blue bubbly. My guess is they went right down the hatch of John H. Parr. That would help explain this scene, in which Thrax babbles on and on about everything from the rigors of being immortal to his love of the British Empire. The only possible excuse for rambling like we see in this scene is if the actor had to keep talking because the director passed out while the camera was rolling.
Thrax carries Norma to his torture lab. You read that correctly, the guy who spent the entire last scene in his wheelchair walks around carrying a full grown woman. What's more, she can't even manage to break free. That's a little sad for her, actually. He lays her on a metal slab from which there is no escape! Well, except for getting up or moving slightly. She isn't tied down in any fashion. Thrax then goes on a fast-motion rampage of picking up various items, bringing them near her, then putting them away. He never actually touches her with anything. I guess it's psychological torture. I know it is for me. Finally, Norma picks up a conveniently placed fencing foil and stabs it all the way through Thrax's torso, buying her more than enough time to escape. You'd think that a guy with an eternity to plan would have figured out by now that if you're going to leave your victims with complete freedom of movement, you could at least not provide them with weaponry. It's just bad planning.
Norma finds her way to Thrax's private chamber. Since it's well lit, fully furnished, and even has a TV, she says to hell with it and just decides to camp out there for a while. I'm not kidding about this. She's got a pissed off immortal looking for her, but she thinks she'll be safe in his fucking bedroom. There's nothing like TV's warm glowing warming glow to instill a false sense of security. She even drapes herself in Thrax's Nazi flag as a blanket. Oddly enough, the old version of "Nightslave" is on her TV, as well (friggin' Jervis and his limited imagination). This scene gives the longest view of the silent movie, which probably has some sort of significance except that it doesn't. What it does have is several shots where the damsel in distress is caught smiling. Meanwhile, Thrax searches for her by walking around the same room over and over again. He decides that if she's not in that one room, she must be on the roof (obviously), so he goes up there to check, completely bypassing the second floor. After a full five minutes of switching back and forth between Norma and Jervis watching the same movie on their respective televisions, Thrax finally gets the bright idea to check his chamber. When Norma notices him, which takes a while, she throws off her protective Nazi propaganda and runs straight back to the torture room. She's a smartie, that Norma. At long last, Thrax pulls the damn sword out of his side and turns it on her. However, she is able to dodge his stabbing attack by using the time honored art of standing in one place directly in front of him, thus causing him to miss and puncture some sort of bag full of stinging gas. No, really. While Thrax is blinded by the gas, Norma makes yet another hasty escape, and this time she takes an axe with her. Way to go, Thraxie. God, writing this last paragraph made me feel woozy. I think I need to go throw up.
Seeing that his practiced techniques of stupidity and talking to himself have failed, Thrax breaks out his secret weapon. He uses his magic powers, which he has all of a sudden, to animate the corpse of the big fat dead woman. This, of course, raises the question, if he can raise the dead, why does he live alone, complaining of his loneliness and talking to a stuffed animal? Why doesn't he have an army of all the women he's supposedly killed over the years waiting on him hand and foot? Oh, and also, what the fuck is wrong with this movie? Norma finds a way out of the house, which, conveniently enough, brings her right out by her car. Unfortunately for her, the fat zombie woman is no fool. Thrax may not be able to find her, but when fat zombie woman is on the case, there's no place to hide! Norma runs into a nearby graveyard, but she trips and falls into a mudpit. Luckily, fat zombie woman is not only a ruthlessly efficient hunter/killer, she's also very helpful. She gives Norma a hand getting out of the pit, but falls over backwards from the effort. Norma knocks a small angel statue off of a grave, which lands on fat zombie woman's shoulder, killing her. What were the odds that being bludgeoned over a miniscule portion of her body would be her one weakness? Oh, when will people learn to build a sturdier zombie?
Norma goes back into the house to find her keys, confidant that she can beat any weak, flabbyass zombie Thrax can throw at her. But Thrax is otherwise occupied, watching Jervis on TV. It looks like Jervis is either acting like an idiot for Thrax's amusement or he's having the most comical heart attack known to man. Either way, Thrax turns off his TV. Unfortunately for him, Uncle liked that show. The disembodied voice of Uncle yells at Thrax and some furniture falls over. Our world is doomed.
We cut to the pool room, again looking normal as ever. Norma is on the ground, as always, but she's back in her dress. Mr. Fludd helps her up and sees her off. She drives away, with a tuxedo-wearing Thrax and Grimstone sitting on top of her car like the fucking Beverly Hillbillies. Thrax asserts that he is now free, although I can't see how that could possibly be the case. His job was to kill women so Uncle could, like, eat their souls or something. He screwed up, so Uncle awakened and took out his/her wrath on him. Explain to me how this means he gets to leave? Jervis appears dead on his couch in one shot, but then he sits up and drinks some more beer. We then cut to a Brewster's Beer commercial being filmed. There is a coffin onscreen, from which Thrax emerges. He explains that he's immortal, then drinks a swig of beer, claiming, "Brewster's Beer - the taste.... stays with you." Then the seas turn to blood, the ground cracks open and spews fire, and all the unbaptized babies of the world vomit high-pressure streams of pea soup at nearby priests. Or at least, I assume that is what happens when you end the goddamn movie with a fucking beer commercial.
If my plot synopsis seems confusing, just believe me when I say that it does not come anywhere close to capturing the insanity that is "Nightslave." Nothing in this movie makes the least bit of sense. Hell, the title doesn't even make sense. Yes, there is a movie called "Nightslave" within the movie, but even that one is filmed entirely during the day. I can't even begin to imagine the creative processes behind a movie about a guy who steals a video from a video store, then watches it while smoking pot and fantasizing about being an immortal rapist and murderer who is completely unable to either rape or murder. If this movie can be said to have any message, it's that smoking pot gives you delusions of half-assed grandeur. And I don't even know what to say about the last ten minutes of the movie, with Jervis/Thrax watching himself on television, the fake heart attack, and the freaking beer commercial. Watching the first four-fifths of "Nightslave," it's possible to convince yourself that you're bearing witness to some brilliant artistic tour de force that fell flat due to a low budget and a spastic director. But when you get to that damn beer commercial, it's pretty obvious: this movie sucks like few movies have sucked before. Do I have to remind you that Lord Thrax is a figment of Jervis's imagination and that Norma is actually a video store employee, not an advertising executive? Someday I'm going to go on a killing spree, and when I finally get caught, you'd best believe that I'm going to blame it on "Nightslave." And what was with those goddamn naked black guys?
|Special Effects:||- 7|
|Music / Sound:||- 8|