• A Review Page For Those Movies You Watch At Home!

    Couch Potato Movie Reviews is, obviously, a blog that exclusively reviews movies. What makes this blog different is the fact that all of the films we are reviewing are all movies that are available on home movie rental companies such as Redbox, Netflix, Blockbuster, and your quickly disappearing neighborhood rental store. This blog is designed to take a more detailed look at those movies that either were sent straight to DVD, received a very limited release in the theaters, or were distributed through the art house or film festival circuit. We will also review those big Hollywood films, but only after they are available for home viewing.

    All the reviews are written by fans of the great art of film making rather than some newspaper reviewer or stuffy film student. We don’t know everything about film but we do know what we like, and we are more than happy to share our opinions with you. What you do with those opinions are totally up to you, although comments are welcome and encouraged.

    Each film review has a one to five star rating at the end of the critique. Here is what those star ratings mean for you couch potatoes:

    * * * * * : Five stars: go and buy this one, don’t just rent it!

    * * * * : Four stars: put this at the top of your rental list.

    * * * : Three stars: average, not bad just not great either.

    * * : Two stars: only rent if you have to see everything.

    * : One star: don’t waste your time with this.

Street Trash

TITLE: Street Trash

YEAR: 1987

GENRE: Horror

It is always enjoyable to sit through a movie that is the first appearance of some major Hollywood celebrity, but it is just as fun to watch the early works of the people behind the scenes as well. For instance, before The Godfather Francis Ford Coppola had his directorial debut in the 1963 horror thriller Dementia 13 and long before Avatar James Cameron first created special effects in the 1980 Star Wars spoof Battle Beyond The Stars. Like with actors and actresses, behind the scenes people in Hollywood in many cases also get their start in low budget and sleazy productions, and it does not get more sleazy than this next film. Street Trash is a gloriously over the top socio-political bloodbath that wallows in its own disgusting nature and is very worthy of viewing for more adventurous cinema fanatics.

Fred (played by Mike Lachey) is a New Jersey homeless bum with a penchant for stealing, drinking as much as possible, and other types of debauchery. He has problems with constantly finding trouble with local homeless gang leader Bronson (Vic Noto) and his goon Wizzy (Bernard Perlman), a tough cop named Bill (Bill Chepil) who is investigating a string of deaths in the area, and his endless pursuit of getting wasted. A local liquor store owner finds a case of old booze named Viper under the stairs of his store and decides to sell the intoxicant for a measly buck a bottle. Viper does bite back though, as one swig of the swill causes the bums to melt into a sticky mess. Fred must protect his brother Kevin (Mark Sferrazza) from the booze from Hell and the even darker world of the streets of New Jersey.

This film is famous for some of the most disproportionate amount of vileness and filth in any film ever made, but Street Trash is so effective because of the fact that the film is fairly well written and produced. The script has numerous ridiculous scenes that combine the gross-out factor and humor in an effective and memorable way: many of the melting scenes are especially effective in their Technicolor glory especially when one bum literally goes down the drain into a toilet; the scene where Burt (Clarence Jarmon) robs a grocery store by shoving chicken down his pants is quite comical in its execution; the penis keep away scene is one of those cinematic experiences that one has to see to believe; and the scene where Bill beats the living crap out of a mob stooge and brings the fight scene to a crescendo by literally vomiting onto the thug is over the top and repulsive in nature. Filming the movie on the streets of a vile neighborhood in New Jersey adds to the grime factor of Street Trash and gives the film a sullied and at times suffocating feel. The actors show how sold they are on the concept of Street Trash and give many gleefully ridiculous performances that add to the quality of the film. The special effects by Jennifer Aspinall (the creator of the look of the Toxic Avenger) are also well done and literally ooze creativity with the classic yuck factor. The decapitation scene is especially creative and is one of the best scenes ever made when somebody loses their head. Add to the factor that Street Trash is lavishly filmed considering its budget and incorporates creative camera angles to raise this film above many Hollywood horror films of its era yet alone the more limited independent films of the same timeframe.

Two well known Hollywood behind the scenes guys started on Street Trash: director/producer Bryan Singer who brought us the TV show “House” and directed Superman Returns and The Usual Subjects started as a grip on this film; and well known stedicam operator J. Michael Muro who was part of the filming crew for the Academy Award winning Dances With Wolves did the direction and stedicam work. Although this film is more than likely offensive for anybody with a conscious, Street Trash is a creative adventure to an urban hell that is worthy of multiple viewings. Just make sure that you are able to flip off the morality switch in your brain before hitting the “play” button, as Street Trash will then be more tolerable to sensitive viewers. Street Trash is one of those films to keep telling yourself “it’s only a movie” as the film sucks the viewer into its vortex of social repugnance, twisted humor, and demented imagery.

* * * * 1/2

–Mark

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