Thursday, October 4, 2012

If Henny Youngman and Stephen King ever made a movie...: "Microwave Massacre" (1983)

Comedian Jackie Vernon is henpecked Donald, a construction worker who cannot get a decent bologna sandwich from his self deluded chef wife May (Claire Ginsberg).

Donald wants simple food, May punishes him with gastronomical cuisine that she consistently mispronounces. May orders a giant microwave (the size of a regular oven), and waits for Donald.

Donald gets drunk, goes home, and murders May. He dismembers her body and puts her in the freezer. He watches a television show about a criminal eating the evidence, and at the same time takes a bite out of some Mayt, I mean meat. He starts taking May to work for meals, telling everyone they broke up. His friends try his lunch, and they want more, too. Donald begins hunting for more lunches via hookers and prostitutes.

Between all the fatty human meat, and a new found smoking habit, Donald develops a heart condition. He is given a pacemaker. He has a big microwave. You can probably figure out the rest. Plot lacking in details? The film is a mere seventy five minutes long.

While this might sound kind of silly and fun, believe me, it is not. There is just one funny joke here: a prostitute's name is Dee Dee Dee, because her mother stuttered. Other than that, the film serves as a platform for Vernon's stand up act, jokes are set up and punchlines are delivered, and the cast pauses for all the audience's imagined laughter to subside.

Vernon and the rest of the cast are all pretty bad. There is plenty of nudity, but the gore effects are very weak. I think they used the same prosthetic for all the females, even though it looks like a man's hand. The film was released in 1983, it looks older, and Donald and May's decor is hideous.

"Microwave Massacre" is a great title but the movie does not live up to its potential. One can hope for a remake, but I don't think anyone would admit to that. I don't recommend it. (*) out of five stars.