DADDY'S DEADLY DARLING (DDD) may be better known as PIGS to some
or LYNN HART to others or my favorite aka THE STRANGE LOVE EXORCIST,
but no matter what you call it, I call it CRAP-TASTC!! From the
gratingly addictive musical score to the above par acting of Marc
Lawrence, who penned, produced and directed this nice but scarce
little horror film to get his daughter Toni into the big screen
biz, DDD puts a wide mouthed grin on my bald mug. And it may be
the best performance of a payphone in a horror film ever.
Plot-wise DDD plays upon one of my favorite film devices: mental
illness, the kookies, the crazies, the unwound, the INSANE. Now
it is nothing new or different for tinsel-ville to spin the wheel
and land on psycho, but this has a nice little exploitation caveat.
Lynn Hart seems to be a victim of incestuous rape and as a product
of that "relationship" she, in an act
of vengeance, hacked Papa into pieces. And so our story begins,
Lynn is socked away into what looks to be one of those scary-assed
13 story state "hospitals" that house the lunatic fringe
and scare the hell out of a 8 year old kid who has to go on Sunday
afternoon to visit his Aunt Wilma and some God-damned, crazed,
coal-colored vet comes screaming down a hallway, engorged dick
in hand hollering "wanna dance little white boy!" You
know that kind I'm talking about, I am sure we've all been there.
Right? HehHeh!? Right? But thank goodness those facilities are
really secure, you never hear of anybody just walking off the
grounds or of a doctor and nurse maybe getting it on and a murderous,
delusional and gorgeous patient hocking a smock and hitting the
road Golden Earring (Radar Love) style in a stolen Volkswagen.
Of course, never happens, ever, well except this one time.
Lynn is out and on the loose and the thematic chorus of one
of many great musical moments in DDD is unleashed. I mention
the music here because it actually stands out, most "b-movies"
(I am fucking sick of that term) have a tendency to skimp on tuneage,
borrowing from lesser known films for the most part or choosing
to go the Moog or bad Hammond route with a redundant BlehBlehBloop
scare track. Well not DDD, the soundtrack is right where it needs
to be, overwrought with heartfelt VelveetaTM.
Well as interesting as the plot possibilities of a killer rape
victim dressed as a nubile nurse (Nurse Sherri Anyone?) in a VW
are, the nurse costume is discarded just in time for us to be
introduced to the great Zambrini (Marc Lawrence). Zambrini is
dragging a corpse into a barn, talking to himself (really us)
about his porcine babies and their love of the human flesh every
since they accidentally got a taste of some haggard drunk who
found the misfortune of becoming Purina Pig ChowTM after a night
of drinking as the pigs had decided to go out for dinner. As Zambrini
begins to "dress-out" our entrée we are treated
to a shot of discarded slacks and white Florida shoes that help
bring home the fact that our beloved Zambrini has done this all
before. But his roadside cafe' sure serves the best pork product
in 5 counties and Zambrini's "Pork Chop Special" really
is a little "special." So is it cannibalism if you eat
an animal that consumes human flesh? By definition, no, but probably
not something you want to partake in, true? Mad-pig-human disease
party of two, smoking or smoked?
As you watch Zambrini at work, the first thing that hits you
is "it's that one guy!" You are right, it is that one
guy, Marc Lawrence got his start in the motion picture business
in the 1930s and after signing with Columbia Pictures managed
to appear in over 100 pictures in the next 18 years. With the
50s Communist Witch Hunts, Lawrence was blacklisted and spent
the next 9 years in Europe making films and doing stage work all
the while receiving high marks from audiences and critics alike.
Upon the advice of actor-friend Lee Marvin, Lawrence came back
to the states in 1960 and took a gig directing for television.
After a few small studio productions he directed episodes of someof
America's now-classic TV shows: MAVERICK, THE LAW MAN, 77 SUNSET
STRIP and many more. The penultimate, pock-marked, furrowed-browed
"Heavy," Lawrence was still dishing the goon-styled
charismo in the late 90s when he had roles in the ill-fated END
OF DAYS and the perplexingly popular DUSK TIL DAWN, but for a
man who has been in a wealth of material which has included everything
from classics like THE OX-BOW INCIDENT, DILLINGER, and THE ASPHALT
JUNGLE to obscurios like CATACLYSM (which would wind up as part
of NIGHT TRAIN TO TERROR)
and HOT STUFF, I think can have you suck upon his high (but wrinkled)
hard one if you choose to slam his work. Lawrence deserves the
highest regard us knuckleheads can bestow, the praising of at
least one of his works
not that there isn't plenty to love.
By the way Mr. Lawrence is ninety-fucking-two years old so show
some respect college boy.
Back to DDD, Lynn shows up just in time to find a "Help
Wanted" sign at Zambrini's Place and wastes no time looking
for the man in charge and as she just about stumbles upon Zambrini
feeding parts and pieces to the pigs, Zambrini quickly gives her
the vacant position, along with a room in the back and of course
a strongly worded warning to "Stay Away From The Pigs!"
You see these is funny-turned pigs and what with their weirdness
they don't like strangers and all and well, you know, anyway,
"STAY AWAY FROM MY FUCKING PIGS!' Ahem.
Well Lynn checks out the digs while we bebop a little more to
the awesome soundtrack and Lynn finds not
Gideon's Bible but a straight razor and we bebop until there is
an edit and we are transferred into Mrs. Macy's humble abode as
she has decided she has had enough of Zambrini's pig farming but
it ain't the stench that has gotten her feathers ruffled it is
something about him "turning dead people into pigs"
or something, Mrs. Macy is brought to life by Katherine Ross,
but before you get all giddy nerd-boy, it ain't Katharine Ross
(note the spelling) from such great as THE GRADUATE and THE LEGACY
it's just another Kate Ross who is clambering on about Zambrini
to the very likable Sheriff Cole, who is played by the very likable
Jesse Vint, who Psychotronic covered extensively and if you ain't
reading Psychotronic then what the fuck are you doing here. Vint
is studdly but less than compassionate to Mrs. Macy's plea as
he tells her "There's no law against turning dead people
into pigs." Jesse's a pretty good actor, obviously, because
he delivers this line without bursting out laughing. If there
is one problem with DDD it is this exchange, what in the hell
does it mean? Does Mrs. Macy believe that folks are becoming pigs
in a "supernatural" way, like Zambrini the Great (we
are privy to some nice artwork depicting Zambrini as a Circus
Performer) is transforming folks into pigs? Or are dead folks
just being piggish when it comes to those fan-tab-ulous pork chops,
in which case, there ain't no law against good eatings! Well of
course, this don't make no sense if they are dead but hey, neither
does this whole exchange but nonetheless it is time for a transition
and on to the end of act one with Zambrini reclaiming his lost
straight razor, but not before using it to slice up the purty
face of Lynn
but only in a very effective dream sequence,
as Lynn screams, the pigs scream, they all scream for
two. Man, the anticipation of the payphone showing up is intense.
And so it goes, Lynn is interested in her surroundings, Sheriff
Cole is interested in Lynn, Zambrini is interested in his bizarre
brand of pig farming, Mrs. Macy is interested in screwing up the
plot with unexplained dialogue and thank goodness we get a new
character, Ben, a regular at the diner who fills in some plot
holes about Zambrini's circus career, asks Lynn out, etc. Lynn
of course decides she should phone (Yes, Yes!) someone after discussing
Ben's comments with Zambrini. She calls her "daddy"
who I thought was dead, oh, he is dead, Lynn is screwed in the
head, I almost forgot and here Mr. Lawrence effectively gives
Ms. Lawrence some good dialogue to play with as she has a conversation
with herself on the phone (do it phone, go, go!) begging her "daddy"
to forgive her and to let her come home, this is some of that
good new-fashioned sensitivity that the 70s gave us, Lynn has
been victimized, it must have been her fault. What a gal this
Lynn Hart, and good ol' Ben has decided to take her out, and out
they go and when Ben decides that a little "parking"
should take place and that Lynn ain't too damn shabby, he makes
a move towards second base, Lynn springs to freedom and is rescued
by our beloved Sheriff, who is just as horny, but you know in
a good intentioned way. This is Jesse Vint's strong suit as an
actor, the good-natured, handsomely chiseled, dumbkin. He works
it well and it is hard to fathom why Vint is not as well known
as Jan-Michael Vincent, Gil Gerard, Chest Hardcheese or any other
good-looking male from the time period.
So, here's what we have got here, to summarize. A wacky, homicidal
incestuous rape victim obsessed with a father she killed, a wacky,
former tightrope walker who fell on his head, and owns a diner
who is sort of fatherly, some wacky, human-flesh-ingesting pigs,
a wacky, nosy neighbor, a handsome young hero-like Sheriff, a
construction worker with a hard-on who frequents the diner and
a payphone. Do we need anything else? How about a wacky, FRANKENSTEIN-like
mob of construction workers that are searching for their buddy,
who hasn't shown up for work for a few days, and of course a investigating
"brain doctor" should come a snooping as well, right?
And he should need to use the payphone, right? Ol' DDD gives us
some of that action, some creepy, memorable stuff with Lunn, some
protective father-figure stuff from Zambrini.
There quite a few nice twists and turns in the plot, a fair amount
of severed limbs, blood and pig snorts to keep you happy and of
course, the tasty undercurrent of insanity and incest that even
the most hardened horror hound has a healthy hole in his heart
for. This film has a rather dark and bitter tone which wallows
in facets of betrayal and hurt, needless to say, me like those
elements in a film. All in all DDD ain't perfect but neither are
you asswipe and if I had a daughter and she wanted to become an
actress then by God, I should hope I could write and direct such
a fine film featuring her as a maniacal man-hating incest victim
who has no problem feeding humans to pigs or using a telephone
to help fill in the plot holes in my script
DAUGHTER, dig it.
Mail Prof. Tread
|Purina Pig ChowTM
go there's a good pig."
|Man, if her Dad wasn't
directing I bet we would have been in for a treat.
Gestapo Black Exploitation?
From Tobacco Row It's Good!
Squad Join Today!
Meateater Do Not Touch!
Stranger Run Run Opie!
House On Hwy 5 Sheesh!
Locked Doors It's Dirty!
Massacre Some Like It.
Pussy It had to be done
Alley It is Rock.
Woman Truck. Woman.
Freak A Classic for You!
Geek Bigfoot Porn
School Ghosthustlers Wow!
Island You Must See!
Not that kinda Cock!
Alienator Feeling Alienated?
Island Vanity and the Beast
Spree Tim Ritter's $0 budget wonder
Prof. Tread still can't sleep.
Tramp She is sumpin' else.
Footmen Tire You...? Heavy religiosity!
Knievel Evel of Course!
Killing Of A Chinese Bookie! Smart Guy.
Pink Angels Gayness, and Bikes
Burning The 80's, ahhh the 80's.
- The Winged Serpant! Larry Cohen rules!
For Your Life! WARNING Racist content
Tall Buford Pusser in the Hizouse!
Camp Internet Geeks Unite!
Losers Ya Loser!
of the Mutilated Bro. George gets busy.
Me An Angel Gal Biker and more.
Grim Reaper Reap on.
One of William Girdler's triumphs.
At Dawn A Modern Classic.
Boy Carradine, Dress, Dourif!
Hollywood Rape-Slaughter Rare expose'.
Savage Weekend. Take
Dead and Buried.
A Should-be Classic.
Summer In Barefoot County. PeeUww!
Night Train To
Terror Choo Choo!
Drink Your Blood Glug, glug!
Russ Meyer and breasts!
Stop Women Honnnk HonnnnK!
Deadly Darling! Pigs!
the Germ Fighter! Clean up!
Doesn't Cathy Eat Breakfast? Why?!
County Express! Glug, Glug!
The Night God Screamed!
White Dog Racists
City Slickers get offed!
Times Five Sean MacGregor's Titantic!
at the Red Wolf Inn Burp!
Eyes See It
Greatest Sinner One of the best!
Baby! Goo Goo!
Camp Nightmare Viva the Revolution!
of the Beast Creatures Booga!
Play Dead Incest craziness!
of Death Vacation madness!
Come, Evil Go! Bye, Bye Sinners!
Strutters Get Black Sucker!
Pretty Eddie Deep South Craziness!
Golem Jewish Folklore or what?
NYC Apartment Blues
To Kill A Clown
Alan Alda Vietnam Vet!
Spook Who Sat Next To The Door Booya!
Woke Up Early The Day I Died Mr. Ed Wood.
Mutilation Man Andy Copp goes arty on us!
People Across The Lake Good TV!
Woman Hunt Load Up Gents.
Are The Damned Dammit!
Farm TV movie Classic!