The Bad Movie Report

Making A Bad Movie:
My Personal Nightmare


Tricks of the Trade

Well, you may or may not be interested, but as I've said before, once a geeky fanboy, always a geeky fanboy. Here's how some of the not-so-hard-to-do FX were pulled off in the first massacre scene.

Holly's disembowelment was, of course, our old pal, foam latex. Diane Johnson, the actress, had to undergo a full-torso cast, a process that took most of an afternoon.

The Alfie at the window was not Kent, our usual Alfie - that would have meant slapping the makeup onto Kent for that one shot, a definite no-no. Instead, it is one of two Alfie dummies that were built, this one with wiring in the head for the red LED eyes.

I've already told the standing-in-the-rain-to-set-up-the-rain-machine story; real rain, of course,Roger rides his infernal contraption. doesn't look right on film, so it was necessary. What I haven't told you is that the rain machine was home-made, out of PVC piping and a garden hose. It worked pretty well, too. I bring this up by way of introducing Roger's Macgyver-style of movie-making. A boodle was saved on that rain machine, but the do-it-yourself ethic can bite you on the butt, as we like to say in Texas. The best example of this was the camera dolly Roger built himself, again using mainly plywood and PVC piping. Worked like a dream in the studio... but when he attempted to use it on an actual road, was surprised that the contraption had the nerve to vibrate while moving - there wasn't much in the way of shock absorption going on. The scenes that would have normally utilized the cart in rugged situations look okay, but Roger couldn't get the dolly shot he wanted. Ah, low budgets!

The other instance, we could say, is our old friend the Buick From Hell. Looking back at that night, I still find it amazing that we thought it looked pretty cool (and without benefit of drugs, too - who had the time?). Julie's slashed throat was another latex piece... looking at my photos of the appliance, you could see that the wound was quite ragged, looking more like it was bitten out than cut... pity it didn't show up too well in the film. Actress Susan Lunt only had to have a neck impression made for that one.

The tree limb that wraps around Jeanne? Fishing line, pure and simple. We didn't have the budget (or the gumption) to actually break one of the glass doors, so we simply slid the door open and jammed pieces of plexiglass in the door way to simulate the broken glass.

As Marc holds the door against the hammering beastie, you don't have to be terribly observant to notice the door giving inwards, towards the hallway. There wasn't a door there, originally; we had to hang a door (complete with molding) in the space. The cheap door (and lack of carpentry - we couldn't afford any repairs to the house) could not withstand Red's scenery-chewing prowess.

Jim EIkner touches up the cardboard head.Robert's head was intensely problematic, as a realistic head Decapitations on a budgetwould have been prohibitively expensive, it was thought.
Here is Roger's solution, and it almost worked: the actor, David Campbell, was made up with a gelatin appliance for the neck stump, and his chest was blacked out. Color photographs were taken of this, and a life-size enlargement made. This photo was placed in the back of the car, and lights painstakingly set up. When you stood in the right place, the photo popped into three dimensions. The illusion was actually quite compelling, and we managed to startle the local security guard with it. Sadly, film is still 2-D, so the 3-D illusion didn't quite translate. Needless to say, there was neither time nor money for re-takes.

Getting the shot.What we needed to do, to pull off the sequence as Roger wanted, was to saw a hole What you should have the rear dash of the car and actually use David's head. The car, however, was J.C.'s (the makeup supervisor), we couldn't afford it, blahdy blahdy blah.

There is a reason Marc runs right into the hand of Alfie, immediately after discovering the murky something in his back seat: Kent (in full makeup; it was another night entirely) was blind. His eyes were taped over and the rGlow in the dark Alfieed LEDs set over them so Alfie's eye could glow red. You probably already know how the eye gouging was done: a tube was run down Red's arm, to his thumb. He placed his thumb inside the bridge of Alfie's nose (Kent's real eyes protected by the tape), and Jim Eikner pumped like a madman running yellow Ultra-Slime down the tube, where it erupted out with a disgusting noise (as I revealed earlier, the sound on Forever Evil is totally looped - I got to do the sound effects later. That's a story for another time. I'll just say that the sound of the eye rupturing was accomplished with a drinking straw, my lungs, and a tub of warm yogurt).


That has GOT to hurt...After gouging the eye, we rushed back into the warm cabin and Kent received the second phase of that night's make-up: one yellow eye, Half-blind Alfie.courtesy of a contact lens, and a fake eyeball dangling from its socket. I don't remember what was holding the eye in place, but it wasn't much. A generous quantity of transparent Ultra-Slime (handy damn stuff, let me tell you) supplied the gooey streamers as Alfie pulls out his own eye. Let me admit it here: that wasn't my idea. Chances are it was J.C.'s.

There's not a place to really put it, so I'll insert it here: after Marc awakens in the hospital, and tells Them Something Is Wrong Up There, Roger engineered a really good dolly shot across the front of the cabin, encompassing the now familiar car (sans cardboard head), some ambulances and police cars. It's a fabulous shot, and thinking back on it, I can understand why I thought, at the time, we were making a decent flick. Did we use Roger's homemade dolly? No, we didn't... Roger sat in the back of a pickup truck, which was placed in neutral, and the rest of us behind it, pushing like Trojans.

Have I mentioned how much fun this no-budget stuff can be?


The Grossest Scene in the Whole Movie