Ted Raimi is Dennis Skinner, a friendly, grinning wacko who kills women, skins them and wears a suit made of their stitched-together flesh. He rents a room from lonely housewife Kerry (Ricki Lake), who's glad to have some company since her moody trucker husband (David Warshofsky) is always gone. Meanwhile, Heidi (Traci Lords), a depressed, soft-spoken, scarred, limping morphine addict who managed to survive an attack years earlier, balances her time in a grimy hotel room shooting up, crying and plotting revenge. This is a dark, dreary, depressing and often awkward film and I hated it when I first saw it. However, I gave it another chance and am glad I did. Aside from the top-notch KNB FX work, it takes place in a unique, graffiti-tinged decaying urban hell landscape, has a great score from Contagion and plenty of clever movie references if you're looking for them. There's one odd and powerful moment in this film, where Dennis is talking to the shell of a victim he's just killed and skinned about his traumatic childhood and rubbing the hands of the deceased along his face for comfort. Moments like these, done with some thought and care, lift a film like this right up out of the gutter. I completely disagree with the potshots made at Traci Lords. Many people just cannot put their perceptions of her behind them long enough to even consider the fact she's capable of giving a competent performance. I found Lords to be more than just a little competent in this particular role. It is by no means an easy or flattering part to have to play, but I thought she played it very, very well. Speaking of unflattering portraits, you can learn more about director Ivan Nagy by viewing HEIDI FLEISS: Hollywood MADAM. Score: 7 out of 10.
A decent-looking lad called Dennis Skinner rents an apartment in a couple's house, Kerry and Geoff. At night he roams the streets with a goodie-bag filled with knives looking for victims to...
December 8, 2019