Saturday, 31 March 2012
Another Son of Sam (1977) Dave Adams
Well, that was a strange one. With Another Son of Sam multiple threat Dave Adams (writer, director, producer, editor and stuntman) here journeys so far beyond the realms of cinematic sanity that he ultimately achieves a kind of mesmeric effect, though dull his film is so damned loose and weird that its difficult to look away. The plot is simple proto-slasher cum police procedural stuff, a guy escapes from an asylum and goes on a killing spree, law enforcement set out to stop him. And there are mummy issues, resolved in suitably unhinged fashion. Mostly bloodless despite a fair bodycount, Another Son of Sam works mostly because its fathomless ineptitude becomes anti-art. Freeze frames without logic or reason, drawn out and dislocated POV sequences and insistent close ups on our killers eyes, a beneath banal sub-plot involving stolen money and swathes of police ineptitude permitting ever more death, even a spot of pointless filler (the film is less than 70 minutes long and still feels the necessity to open with a water skiing sequence and a nightclub number by low rent wailer Johnny Charro, who apparently is still an active presence to this day). To be fair one or two of the blink and miss 'em strangulation kills have a minor jolt (also I think someone gets stabbed with a hatstand though I'm not 100% on that one), and the climax is authentically bonkers as opposed to merely ineptly bonkers so it isn't completely devoid of conventional worth. Also some of the assorted ladies of the cast are pretty attractive in a bright mid 70's kinda way. But by and large this is a film that I would absolutely only recommend to absolute devotees of vintage era bewildering junk, by any other standards we're talking absolute nadir cinema here. As far as such work goes its among the more enjoyable I've seen even though the essential plotting was too straightforward for my tastes and it really could have done with stronger material in terms of violence and skin. So by way of summary, if you're the sort of person who needs to see this one, go ahead since you might just love it. But if you're the sort of person who still places much value on your time, sanity and so forth, stay far, far away.