New Zealand 1987
Peter Jackson for WingNut Films, New Zealand Film Commission
directed by Peter Jackson
starring Pete O'Herne, Mike Minett, Terry Potter, Peter Jackson, Craig Smith, Doug Wren, Dean Lawrie, Peter Vere-Jones, Ken Hammon, Robin Griggs, Michael Gooch, Peter Gooch, Laurie Yarrall, Shane Yarrall, Philip Lamey, Costa Botes, Graham Butcher, Bob Haliburton, Andrew mcKay, Clive Haywood, John McTavish, John Nelson, Graham Nesbitt, Steven Smith, John Logan jr, Tony Hiles
written by Peter Jackson, additional material by Ken Hammon, Tony Hiles, music by Michelle Scullion, Jay Snowfield, special effects and makeup effects by Peter Jackson
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Aliens led by Lord Crumb (Doug Wren) have landed on earth to harvest on
the humans - and turn them into low-fat fastfood ... so the gouvernment
sends the Boys in.
The Boys are a semi-competent quartet - Barry
(Pete O'Herne), Frank (Mike Minnett), wannabe soldier-of-fortune Ozzy
(Terry Potter) and borderline mad Derek (Peter Jackson) - here to secure
the area (with a roadblock sign) and bring some alien samples back home
... and they mess up gloriously as tehy have soon started a small war,
have allowed a travelling salesman (Craig Smith) to fall into the aliens'
hands, and have lost their live specimen.
What ensues are countless
gunbattles out in the open and in and around the mansion Crumb and his
alien underlings have taken up residence in. Ultimately, and against all
odds, the Boys are winning though, so much so that Crumb can no longer
maintain his human form and turns back into the ugly alien he is - and
when he realizes he's fighting a lost battle, he sees no other way out
than to make an escape in his spaceship - which incidently is the very
house he has taken up residence in. Thing is, Derek still is in the house,
and once the house is airborne, he takes care of Lord Crumb using his
chainsaw, then slips into his skin as disguise to wreak havoc on the
aliens' home planet too ...
Admittedly, this synopsis makes Bad
Taste out to be nothing more than a low budget piece of trash - and
the low budget part is right, too (in fact, the budget was quite obviously
very low), but as far as the trash goes, Bad Taste is less
of a serious genre film and more of an all-out slapstick (or splatstick)
comedy coming up with increasingly more hilarious ways of how to slice and
dice up humans and aliens, of what could go wrong if big boys are given
loaded guns to play with, of what to do if your skull's fractured and the
like - and while the film is gorey as hell, it's even funnier on an
enjoyably nonsense level that nevertheless is never plain stupid but
rather inspired in a wicked way.
Director Peter Jackson has come a long
way since Bad Taste, having become a Hollywood darling over the
years with the Lord of the Rings-series and King Kong
(event though he has never left New Zealand for his movies), but still,
this is one of his best films, and almost certainly his most inventive -
and it shows what you can do with next to no budget.