October 20th, 2012: Thundercrack! (1975)


Cast and Crew:   Curt McDowell (Director)

What It’s About: Mrs. Gert Hammond (Marion Eaton) is a crazy old Southern lady, who lives alone in her house mourning her dead husband, drinking, wearing really bad wigs and make-up, and proclaiming that her son “does not exist”.  During a horrific storm, a group of travelers are stranded in Mrs. Hammond’s Old Dark House. The travelers include Chandler (Mookie Blodgett), whose girdle factory heiress wife’s death by girdle fire at a party has made him give up on the fairer sex and move onto men; the Christian wife of a country singer who’s not what she seems; two women who were on the road when they had an accident; two men, one a hustling hitchhiker, the other a omni-sexual horndog; and Bing (George Kuchar, who co-wrote the screenplay), a circus truck driver whose crash releases many dangerous animals, including Medusa (Pamela Primate), a sex-crazed ape that Bing was tricked into sleeping with, the experience torturing him ever after.  Can the guests survive the night and will they overcome their tragic pasts?

Why Watch it Today?:  The Old Dark House was released on this date in 1932.  Thundercrack! is an off the wall, one of a kind parody of Old Dark House movies; it’s what The Rocky Horror Picture Show might be if it was a completely insane porno film instead of a musical parody of the genre.  This was porn made by experimental filmmakers, so it’s far more interesting than the “Official Porn Parody’s” of today; what it lacks in eroticism it makes up for in eccentricity and “did I really just see that” moments.  A must see for fans of the unusual.

No trailer, but a clip that’s actually SFW:

Other Choices:  Radley Metzinger made his own parody of the genre with his version of the oft filmed, The Cat and the Canary and Gene Wilder and Gilda Radner took a stab at parodying the genre with Haunted Honeymoon.

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