REVIEW: TOXIC CRUSADERS: THE MOVIE

CAST (VOICES)

Gregg Berger (Transformers)
Susan Blu (Curious George)
Rodger Bumpass (Monsters, Inc.)
Paul Eiding (Wall-E)
Susan silo (James Bond Jr)
Kath Soucie (Futurama)
Michael J. Pollard (Scrooged)

The cartoon follows roughly the same plot as the films The Toxic Avenger and it’s two succeeding sequels. A complete and hopeless nerd, Melvin, falls into toxic waste and becomes Toxie, a hideously deformed mutant of superhuman size and strength. Teaming with other mutants, No-Zone (whose power comes from radioactive sneezes), Major Disaster (he can control plants), Head-banger (Fender, a singing telegram delivery surfer-type, and Dr. Bender, a stereotype mad scientist, fused together – a hybrid character based on the Siamese twins in “Troma’s War”) and Junkyard, a dog/hobo hybrid, to become The Toxic Crusaders! Together they fight crime in every sense of the word and finally turn their attention on the Apolalypse Inc. of the movies Toxic Avenger Parts II & III, although in the series the chairman is an alien as opposed to Satan. The series follows the attempts of the crusaders to fight crime and be environmentally safe.Image result for TOXIC CRUSADERSThe movie is merely 3 episodes of the short lived cartoon series loosely based on the cult horror movie “The Toxic Avenger” and it’s sequels. Chalk it up to what the hell were they thinking? Of course after seeing this cartoon series about a nerd being turned into a hideously deformed creature of superhuman size and strength, who then teams up with a gang of other mutants to make the world ecologically friendly by doing battle with an alien and his minions, and afterwords buying the endless toy tie ins, kids would want to see the movies that it was based on. But even disregarding that warped notion, the cartoon was ludicrously bad and had an unpalatable ‘save the environment’ scenario that was only topped by the simply repulsive indoctrinating garbage that was “Captain Planet”.

Advertisements

REVIEW: CITIZEN TOXIE: THE TOXIC AVENGER IV

 

CAST

David Mattey (Hanock)
Clyde Lewis (Nightfall)
Heidi Sjursen (Spell Out)
Paul Kyrmse (Terror Firmer)
Debbie Rochon (Tromeo and Juliet)
Ron Jeremy (Orgazmo)
Corey Feldman (The Lost Boys)
Trent Haaga (Killjoy Goes To Hell)
Mark Torgl (Beast)
Rick Collins (SGT. Kabukiman NYPD)
Lisa Gaye (Terror Firmer)
Stan Lee (Avengers Assemble)
Eli Roth (Inglorious Basterds)
Hugh M. Hefner (The House Bunny)

Image result for CITIZEN TOXIEThis is an excellent sequel, that goes incredibly way over the line, and you know what?, I absolutely loved it!. All the characters are excellent, and the story while juvenile and incredibly bizarre was awesome, plus the performances are all highly amusing!. It was often very bizarre but in a good way, and it has to be one of the goriest films I have ever seen, plus it’s very well made and written for it’s low budget. This is even better then the awesome original Toxic Avenger, and it had some bizarre characters (Like The Vibrator, Dolphin man etc,etc) but they all were really cool, plus I loved the final showdown between Good Toxie and Evil Toxie!. The diaper mafia at the beginning were just hilarious, and while I did feel ashamed for laughing at some things because they went way over the line, I couldn’t help it! plus it’s extremely creative as well. It also may be the best Troma movie I have ever seen, and the gore effects were very good for it’s low budget, plus I also loved it’s sleaziness.LE-FEU-SOUS-LA-PEAU-SUBURBAN-MAYHEMThis is definitely one of the goriest films I have ever seen. We get Ripped out tongues, tons of very bloody impaling’s an old lady gets her face squished by car, a very gory baby fight in someone’s belly, tons and tons of severed limbs all over the place, cut off arms, cut off hands,someone’s dick blows up (you heard me), people sh*t themselves,ripped of b*alls,cross out the moth in back of head,2 buckets full of intestines and other goodies, so many people get there intestines ripped out in graphic detail,someone is cut in half, severed head, tons of extremely bloody gunshot wounds,buckets and buckets of blood and so incredibly much more I can’t even remember!.
Image result for CITIZEN TOXIEThe Acting is a lot of fun!. David Mattey is brilliant as both the Toxie’s he was funny, charming, was tons of fun to watch, and he seemed to have a ball as Evil Toxie, he truly is The Toxic Avenger and I hope to see him playing Toxie once more if they do an Toxic Avenger 5!. Heidi Sjursen is great fun as both Sarah and Claire, she played it straight, and I had fun watching her, I really dug her. Paul Kyrmse is a lot of fun as Kabukiman especially when ever he got drunk, he was also fun as the evil one too. Joe Fleishaker is hilarious as the sidekick Lard Ass/Chester, and boy can he ever eat!. Michael Budinger is funny as the handicapped Junkie I loved him!. Lisa Terezakis is hilarious as Sweetie Honey and was extremely convincing. Rest of the cast are fine. Overall a must see for everyone!.

REVIEW: THE TOXIC AVENGER – PART III: THE LAST TEMPTATION OF TOXIE

CAST

Ron Fazio (Basket Case 2)
John Altamura (New York Nights)
Phoebe Legere (King of New York)
Rick Collins (SGT. Kabukiman NYPD)
Lisa Gaye (Terror Firmer)
Jessica Dublin (Troma’s War)
Michael Jai White (The Dark Knight)
Mitch Cohen (Clerks)

As many fans can tell you, THE TOXIC AVENGER PARTS II & III were originally supposed to be one movie, that wound up being cut in half due to TROMA having a little over four hours worth of footage. Naturally cutting one film into two, results in many flaws & continuity errors in both films. Despite it’s many flaws, Part III, arguably turned out to be the better sequel out of the two & thus far has the best plot line out of any of the TOXIC AVENGER films. The story is far more interesting than it was in Part II & adds a Faustian like plot line, which features a depressed, suicidal & a bored, down on his luck former superhero, with no crime left to clean up & trying to help fund his fiancée’s eye operation, that will restore her sight, but without any luck, until he is offered a job as the spokesman & assistant to a conglomerate corporation – Apocalypse Inc. this time Apocalypse is featured as a corporation literally from hell & a much eviler Chairman, that tells Toxie they want to re-build Troma into a thriving metropolis that will see everyone with a well paying job & much nicer city full of business & opportunities, but are really intending to brain wash Toxie & turn him into a corporate yuppie, while they transfer their chemicals & force the people into submission, until Toxie learns of their deeds & intends to flush them out, only to discover the Chairman he is working for, is really the Devil himself!Image result for the toxic avenger part iiiWhom he has sold his soul to & may not be able to up seat him at all, without the Devil destroying him. The opening scene set at a video store, that sees Toxie fighting off a group of criminals features some pretty effective gore scenes & some of the best kills this series has to offer. The film also takes a humorous jab at capitalism & the corporate lifestyles. Part III also continues it’s self referential angle, as Toxie stands up in front of a cardboard cut out of himself from the first film & then uses the VHS version of the first movie to tie up a criminal. Plus the video store is littered with tons of Troma movies. RICK COLLINS is a hoot as the chairman/devil. Troma’s Two Million dollar price tag for both movies, was clearly put to good use since both films features countless stunts, chases, explosions & fight scenes, but the films for whatever reason still felt cheap, despite a much slicker look.


That said while Part III is clearly more interesting in terms of plot than Part II. The downside is Part II was clearly better in giving fans what the wanted & expected from the series. Over the top gory kills every few minutes, tons of action & gratuitous nudity.  Part III’s main problems mainly consist of the fact that what makes up for the majority of the films running time, is merely extended scenes of shots already in Part II, including the sex scene between Clair & Toxie, which is just the extended version of the one used in Part II. Plus many of the scenes are just plain silly & could have been cut out of the film. Not only that, after the opening video store massacre, there is no gore & no violence until the last half hour, when Toxie takes on the Devil. Toxie’s dad which showed up at the end of Part II, also is not seen anywhere in the film.

Image result for the toxic avenger part iiiThe results of cutting one movie into two, also results in a series of continuity problems such is as follows: Toxie II saw Toxie returning from Japan to chase Apocalypse out, but yet he seemingly has no memory of this here, simply because he now joins them, by taking a job offer they have for him & becoming a yuppie in the process Although shot in 1989, PART III would wind up being picked up by the now defunct VESTRON VIDEO, where it sat on the shelf unreleased until 1991. However this was in many ways a blessing for Part III, since the film landed on video store shelves around the same time the TOXIC CRUSADERS cartoon series was playing on TV, as a result of this, Part III, was heavily promoted in video outlets. JOHN ALTAMURA (who left midway in production after a disagreement with the film-makers) & RON FAZIO (who also plays a member of Apocalypse) do well in the title role, although I tend to prefer Fazio, simply because the scenes Altemura is in, makes Toxies face look chubbier. LLOYD KAUFMAN & MICHAEL HERZ both direct the film with an assured hand & the acting is mainly bad, but then again it’s TROMA, so what do you expect? But again like in PART II, I was still thinking to myself, wasn’t Claire named Sarah in the first film? & wasn’t Toxie’s last name Fern & not Junko? it seems like the film-makers changed Toxie’s last name to a Japanese one, in order to fuel their plot for Part II, with Toxie thinking his dad was maybe Japanise, but it is still stupid.

Image result for the toxic avenger - PART IIIIn the end, despite it’s many flaws I enjoyed Part III & would definitely recommend it. Followed by a direct sequel to the first film only, that ignores Part II & III – CITIZEN TOXIE: THE TOXIC AVENGER 4.

REVIEW: THE TOXIC AVENGER – PART II

CAST

Ron Fazio (Basket Case 2)
John Altamura (New York Nights)
Phoebe Legere (King of New York)
Rick Collins (SGT. Kabukiman NYPD)
Lisa Gaye (Terror Firmer)
Jessica Dublin (Troma’s War)
Michael Jai White (The Dark Knight)

Image result for the toxic avenger - PART IIIn 1984, Lloyd Kaufman and Michael Herz created Troma’s brand of a superhero, which was the ‘Toxic Avenger’. It brought the small indie film studio into the limelight, which created an instant cult following, and made enough money to finance several further films. This superhero was a nerdy guy janitor who was bullied and picked on, but then fell into a vat of toxic waste and emerged a horribly disfigured superhero who would fight the bad guys in town.
Image result for the toxic avenger - PART IIThe year 1989 came around and Kaufman and Herz decided to make sequel and a quick buck as well, and thus ‘The Toxic Avenger: Part II’ was born. There are a lot of fun moments here with this sequel, but Kaufman and Herz decided the more over- the-top this is, the better the film will be. That’s not always the case, as is here with Part II. Instead of telling a somewhat cohesive story from start to finish and furthering along the Toxie character in their own Troma way, Kaufman and Herz decided to drag out gross out and gooey scenes too long and put together a bunch of schlocky-silly skits together with blood and guts, rather than keep the story flowing.

Image result for the toxic avenger - PART IIDon’t get me wrong, there are some genuine good moments here, but they wear out there welcome rather quickly, even when the crew heads to Japan for a change of scenery. After the events of the first film, Toxie lives with his girlfriend and works at the center for the blind. The town he lives in is free of the bad guys, where everyone lives more or less a hippy lifestyle. Low and behold though, the evil people at Apocalypse Inc., the evil corporation whose sole purpose is to pollute the Earth has a new sinister plan.Image result for the toxic avenger - PART IIHowever, they know that The Toxic Avenger will stand in their way of their cruel schemes, thus they try to kill Toxie. Meanwhile, Toxie is dealing with his own personal demons in addition to brutally killing the bad guys. He has sever depression and wants to know who his real father is, which sets him out on a journey via windsurfing to Japan to locate his father. It seems like Troma would have quite the character study here, but let’s get serious for a minute. This is Troma, and Troma is mostly just interested in more nudity, gore, and violence.

One of the unfortunate things here is that Kaufman and Herz throw all the playing cards on the table in the first fifteen minutes of the movie in one long action scene of destruction, and the film never recovers. They literally blew their wad too early. There are a few later scenes that pack this kind of action, but it is very short lived with long gaps of slow pacing problems. In the end, I still love that this sequel is part of the whole Toxie franchise, but it’s very inconsistent and riddled with trying to go the extra mile than telling a cohesive story.

REVIEW: THE TOXIC AVENGER

CAST

Mitch Cohen (Clerks)
Andree Maranda (Two Top Bananas)
Jennifer Babtist (Goodbye, New York)
Cindy Manion (Blow Out)
Robert Prichard (Head Games)
Gary Schneider (Beach Balls)
Pat Ryan (Birdy)
Mark Torgl (Beast)
Patrick Kilpatrick (Minority Report)
Marisa Tomei (The Fighter)

Image result for the toxic avenger1984Melvin Ferd (Mark Torgl) works as a janitor at a health club in the fictional town of Tromaville, New Jersey where the customers—particularly Bozo (Gary Schneider), Slug (Robert Prichard), Wanda (Jennifer Babtist) and Julie (Cindy Manion)—harass him constantly. His tormentors get more and more violent, even deliberately killing a young boy on a bike in a hit-and-run and taking photos of the carnage afterward. The next day, they trick Melvin into wearing a pink tutu and kissing a sheep. He is chased around the health club and out a second story window. He lands in a drum of toxic waste, which sets him on fire. After running down the street in a ball of flames, Melvin douses the flames in his bathtub. The chemicals cause him to transform into a hideously deformed creature of superhuman size and strength.
Image result for the toxic avenger1984A group of drug dealers, led by the criminal Cigar Face (Dan Snow), are harassing a police officer by the name of O’Clancy (Dick Martinsen), trying to buy him off. When he refuses to accept the money, Cigar Face and his gang prepare to castrate him. Melvin appears out of nowhere and violently kills the criminals, then leaves a mop on their faces as a call sign. Melvin then tries to return home, but his mother is terrified of him and will not let him in the house; so Melvin – publicly dubbed “The Monster Hero” and hailed as a hero – builds a makeshift home in the junkyard.
Image result for the toxic avenger1984Elsewhere in Tromaville, a gang of three men are holding up a Mexican food restaurant and attack a blind woman named Sarah (Andree Maranda). They kill her guide dog and attempt to rape her, but are stopped by the Toxic Avenger, who wreaks bloody vengeance on them. The Toxic Avenger takes Sarah back to her home, where they begin to get to know one another and subsequently become romantically involved.
Image result for the toxic avenger1984The Toxic Avenger returns to the health club, attacks popular girl Wanda in a sauna and burns her rear side on the heater. Afterwards, the Avenger is relieving himself in a back alley when a limo pulls up and a pimp tries to push a 12-year-old girl onto him, but he fights him and his goons off and saves the girl. Melvin later returns to the health club, pursues Julie into the basement, and cuts off her hair (offscreen). He then confronts Bozo and Slug after they brutally stole a car, ending in Slug getting thrown out of the moving car and Bozo driving off the side of a cliff. As Melvin continues to fight crime and aid the people in the city, Mayor Belgoody (Pat Ryan Jr.), the leader of Tromaville’s extensive crime ring, is horrified of what is happening to his goons. He is worried that it will lead back to him and wants Melvin to be taken care of. A group of men, led by Cigar Face, surround Melvin with guns. Just before they fire on him, he leaps up to a fire escape, so that they end up shooting each other.
Image result for the toxic avenger1984When the Toxic Avenger kills a seemingly innocent old woman in a dry cleaning store (she is in fact a leader of an underground white slave trade), Belgoody uses this opportunity to call in the National Guard. Back in his junkyard home, the Toxic Avenger is terrified of what he has become, and he and Sarah decide to move away from the city and take a tent into nearby woods. They are eventually discovered, and the Mayor and the National Guard come to kill him, but the people of Tromaville will have none of it. The Mayor’s evil ways are revealed, and the Toxic Avenger proceeds to rip out Belgoody’s organs to see if he has “any guts”. The movie ends with a reassurance that the Toxic Avenger will continue to combat crime in Tromaville.

Image result for the toxic avenger1984This film is a classic with some really great comedy and gory scenes in it. Only be sure to get the Director’s cut release because that is uncut while the original UK release is edited for violence.