The pre-credits sequence alone should get most on side: Phil (director and co-writer Drew Bolduc), who looks like a cross between Dario Argento and Jimmy Saville, is making out with a hot brunette in a woodlands shack when a demented farmer pounces in on them brandishing a freshly severed cock. Phil sprints for his life as the farmer gives chase with a huge blade, literally shitting in his pants as he does so.
Welcome to THE TAINT - a film that clearly isn't going to get any more politically correct in the next hour.
Phil manages to shake off his pursuer quickly and settles back into a stroll through the otherwise tranquil woods. However, he's soon accosted by another nutter: a bald bloke hoisting aloft a rock and an erect, spunking penis. It looks like Phil really will come a cropper this time - but is saved when hot chick Misandra (Colleen Walsh) leaps out of a nearby bush and blows a hole through baldie's skull with her automatic rifle.
As she begins to explain to the dumbfounded Phil how the local water has been contaminated by an alien element which has turned all men in the area into women-killing psychopaths, we're treated to a prime example of this as a group of women in another part of the forage are attacked by rabid Hillbilly-types.
One is thrown over a bridge, another is set alight ... the remaining ones suffer even gorier fates.
Misandra continues to clue Phil in on what's going on. She takes him - and us - back to a week ago, when she was enjoying life with her fiancÚ snogging in the woods and at home, and killing defenceless animals together. All this sickly romantic nonsense ended when he drank a glass of tap water at home and subsequently tried to kill her during sex.
Fortunately she had the quick resolve to smash his head into a pulp and tear out his brains ...
Okay, so that's the point she became a gun-toting man-hating bitch ... and that brings us, and Phil, up to speed. Misandra and Phil join forces to make their way out of the sun-kissed woods alive and possibly even find a solution to the problem. Although there is one thing they may need to consider - Phil is parched.
In its own way, THE TAINT is absolutely brilliant. The title refers to the tainted colour of the contaminated water and as such gives the film an ecological theme of sorts. But this is as serious or political as it gets.
THE TAINT is, rather, a spondiciously silly film that, in terms of humour, pace and action, strongly recalls the likes of BAD TASTE, BAD KARMA and FANTACIDE. Imagine something that falls in-between all three, and you won't be far off.
Sexual innuendos abound in the decidedly juvenile script, the comedy reeks of the type of thing Will Ferrell would indulge in at his crudest (think STEPBROTHERS, then multiply by 100) and the sequence where we're introduced to Phil's adversary Houdini (Cody Crenshaw) and his cohorts - boasting names such as Balloon Knot and Alligator Fuckhouse - allows for an excuse to branch off into a music video segment worthy of Trey Parker.
The story introduces a lot of characters who have little to do but be loud, obnoxious and amusing for a few minutes before meeting grisly demises. Clocking in at just 69 minutes in length, this is a brisk and flab-free comedy-sci-fi-horror hybrid that successfully moulds high energy with lowbrow gore punch lines and a surprising amount of technical finesse at times.
Black-and-white flashbacks are stylised, and the opening scene of a child emerging from the inside of a vagina, along with a later shot of a penis thrusting inside a woman, will have fans of Gaspar Noe's ENTER THE VOID wondering just how much of a pioneer he truly is ...
As much as these little additions are appreciated though, it's the aforementioned pace and unrelenting agreeable comedy that propels THE TAINT the most and help to make it so enjoyable. Well, that and the frequent gore from co-writer Dan Nelson - which often looks marvellous, in a cheap old-school prosthetics manner
The DVD is a self-produced affair from makers Boston Media Alliance, available for the time being exclusively from its own official site (details of which are at the foot of this review).
It's an excellent disc, all things considered.
First off, the film is presented uncut in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen and looks extremely good. Colours are vivid, blacks are handled well and images are fairly sharp for the most part. It's a shot-on-digital effort so don't expect home cinema quality, but it looks perfectly good for what it is.
English audio is provided in a reliable, consisted and clean stereo mix. The addition of optional English Hard-of-Hearing subtitles is a nice touch.
Extras include a fast-paced 45-second teaser trailer set to a bouncing indie beat, and a slightly more substantial 1-minute trailer which is gorier, more technically accomplished and benefits from a few impressive quotes from positive online reviews.
The best extra is undoubtedly a commentary track from Nelson and Bolduc, along with their roommates (who also appear in the film). Nelson and Bolduc keep the kettle boiling, while the others- when they do speak - are barely audible. A few giggles at the gore gags, a few more uncomfortable pauses: these guys are new to this so expect a bit of meandering. But, stick with it because it picks up and becomes a rather valid, insightful and at-times refreshingly self-effacing natter.
An animated main menu page opens the disc. From there, you can visit an animated scene-selection menu which allows access to the main feature via 18 chapters.
THE TAINT, shot on digital video and as daft as the proverbial brush, is fantastic fun. It's got more fake cocks and buckets of fake spunk than you can possibly imagine, and set-piece after set-piece of genuinely funny gags that build towards some thrilling cheap gore (I lost count of how many heads get mashed).
It's great, as is the DVD. Which you can buy now (or download the film) from www.taintmovie.com.
Review by Stuart Willis
|Directed by Drew Bolduc|
|Region All - NTSC|
|see main review|