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Body Melt – 4


Director – Philip Brophy

Cast – Gerard Kennedy, Andrew Daddo, Ian Smith, Regina Gaigalas, Vincent Gil, Neil Foley, Anthea Davis, Matthew Newton, Lesley Baker

Release Year – 1994

Reviewed by John of the Dead

After a long string of modern horror films I felt the urge to watch a pre-21st century flick, and Body Melt is where I was lead. My first experience with an Ozploitation (Australian exploitation) flick, I was stoked to see what Australia had to offer. I’ve enjoyed many Aussie films over the years, but I can’t say I had seen a legitimate exploitation flick from the land down under. Unfortunately, I hated Body Melt for the extreme majority of the experience. Eventually the film gets to the point and the goods ensue, but by then it was too little and very much too late.

Residents of the peaceful middle class Pebbles Court are being used as unknowing guinea pigs in a series of experiments for a new “Body Drug” that causes rapid body melting and excruciating death.

The story begins in decent fashion, showing us a commercial for a new pharmaceutical drug and shoving a prime example of the side effects in our face when a subject experiences gut-wrenching pain that ultimately leads to his demise. After this we see some decent development regarding the drug and its volatile effects, but for whatever reason the horror takes a strong back seat to the zany story. Instead, we follow lesser characters on a road trip and the crazy folks they come across. It is strange for a horror film to drag so early into the experience, and for the next 40 minutes we see no on-screen deaths whatsoever. Finally, the story kicks into gear and the kills begin to hit the screen, but after the majority of the film delivering mindless nonsense these kills were nowhere near enough to save the experience.

Director Philip Brophy did a mediocre job at best, giving us good gore when it occurred but that is the extent of the positives regarding his direction. With sweet kills the film eventually became bearable, and I was glad to see great practical effects used for the gory meltdowns. Everything else in the film, from the acting performances, to the sets used, and the overall atmosphere, was just junk. It’s a bit zany and some of you may like that, but the quality is low and the laughs are few and far between. I did laugh at a scene where a man kills a kangaroo with a rock from 1,000 yards away and then eats its adrenal gland, but that is as good as the zaniness gets.

Overall, Body Melt was a disappointment for me. I expected good gore, and I did receive that (eventually), but the story and execution ruin whatever good the film has to offer.

Rating: 4/10

…Additional Stills…

Try not to laugh…

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