Maniac " DVD
When I first slipped
this into my DVD player, I thought I'd finally gone completely
over the edge. It looked like yet another Ulli Lommel shitheap,
with its poor video quality and its heavy dependence on gratuitious
violence and gore. Not to mention the necessity of text crawls
to advance the plot--it's standard Lommel to not even bother giving
up the plot with things like exposition and character development.
No, you see, these things just get in the way of reasonably attractive
young actresses getting strangled and rendered, so why bother?
But no...unless "Max
Nikoff" is a psuedonym for "Ulli Lommel"--and frankly
I wouldn't be a bit surprised if it were--this is just another
godawful shitheap of a movie that has absolutely nothing to do
with Ulli Lommel and instead with Nola Roeper and the Hollywood
House of Horror.
The Hollywood House
of Horror, you see, is the company that brought us so many of
Ulli Lommel's syrup of ipecac replacements. And this time, in
a truly Lommelesque move, Hollywood House of Horror brings us
the based-on-a-true-story story of a serial killer who mummifies
the heads of his victims. And of course, not mummifies in the
true sense because that would require things like prosthetics
and research and money that Hollywood House of Horror clearly
does not have. No, instead all we get is strangulations with strips
of linen followed by wrapping the head up in said linen. And as
a parade of young no-names goes from truck to room and then to
corpsing-up, we begin to realize that this is why Hollywood House
of Horror does these "based on a true story" serial
Because their writers
are just full-blown incompetent. First Lommel, and now Nikoff--not
a one of their writers can actually make a story and develop it
beyond this progression of killings. All "Mummy Maniac"
is, start to finish, is just a series of girls getting killed
in this exact same room almost the exact same way broken up by
some very limited exposition into a character I care absolutely
nothing about. Perhaps the worst part was when I was watching
it, and for about ten minutes, I forgot the killer's name until
someone said it again.
And frankly, I'm still
wondering if Nikoff's just a false front for Lommel who has taken
such a critical beating (and not just from me, either!) that he
can't get a movie out there unless he's doing it from cover.
Either way, and I can't
believe I have to APOLOGIZE to ULLI LOMMEL on this one, but he's
not the only one out there making truly revolting wastes of time
and calling them films. No, Max Nikoff is also an up-and-comer
to watch in the field of "Movies No One Should Bother Watching",
and frankly, this just dismays me.
The ending involves
flashbacks, and corpses and a whole lot of flashbacks, but really,
it doesn't matter HOW they end it, as long as it ends. I've lost
all interest in this pathetic waste of plastic long before now,
so why even bother to carry on through the end.
The special features
include English and Spanish subtitles and trailers for "Mummy
Maniac", "H.P. Lovecraft's The Tomb", "Return
of the Living Dead 5: Rave to the Grave", "Zombie Nation",
"Chicago Massacre: Richard Speck", and an advertisement
All in all, I'm beginning
to reconsider my censure of Ulli Lommel as, perhaps, misplaced.
Perhaps the blame for the recent influx of garbage from Lions
Gate lies not with the directors and writers of this swill but
rather the producer. After all, to look at Lommel's films and
realize that Nola Roeper had something to do with most to all
of them is enough to make you wonder. But grander pictures aside,
"Mummy Maniac" will waste two hours of your life. Eighty
minutes watching it--assuming you even got that far--and forty
minutes recriminating yourself for sitting through the whole miserable
Directed by Max Nikoff
Written by Max Nikoff
Starring Erica Cruz, Colette Claire, Hollie Overton, Elissa Dowling
Produced by Nola Roeper
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