FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE, so beware yon spoilers!

Oct 5, 2009

Day 5: "I've never felt like this before."

It's a wonder to me that Mausoleum and I have both been walking this planet since 1983, yet last night marked the first time we'd crossed paths. Approximately three minutes after I started playing the DVD, I realized that I'd found my one true soulmate. It doesn't matter where Mausoleum has been all my life- the important thing is that we've found each other at last, and we're now destined to walk the earth together!

Whilst visiting her mother's grave, li'l Susan decides she no longer wants to live with her Aunt Cora. She takes off running through the graveyard, stopping only when she hears someone whisper-singing her name. She peeks inside one mausoleum, but then spots another one across the way that's far more interesting in that it features its own weather system.

She enters the crypt, which is all lit up in greens and purples like the finest Spencer's Gifts. We learn that this is the tomb of the Nomed family...yes, NOMED. That's some seriously Nilbog shit, if you know what I mean.

Anyway, a clawed hand rises from the sarcophagus, things that defy explanation happen, and Susan's eyes light up all green and make a laser noise. The girl done went and got herself possessed!

Fast forward! Susan is now all grown up- she's portrayed by ex-Playboy Bunny Bobbie Bresee and she's married to Marjoe fucking Gortner. A charmed life, you say? It's easy to assume so, but there's a dark side to this fairytale existence! See, a woman of Susan's...err, attributes finds herself constantly subjected to the lechy gaze of creepy weirdo peeping tom gardeners and creepy weirdo Dan Haggerty-esque disco patrons.

All Susan wanted to do was go dancing with her husband (yes, Marjoe fucking Gortner disco dances!), but that Dan Haggerty-esque jerk made it so difficult that she was left with no choice but to use her magic green gaze to set his car on fire while he was locked inside.

The next day, the creepy gardener makes a bold pass at Susan while her husband is at work- her eyes get their green on and we know it's time for some demonic justice! But not before we bear witness to an eerily silent montage that clues us in as to just what, in fact, a gardener does with his day after making a pass at his employer:

He puts down fertilizer!

He mows the lawn!

He reads whilst eating lunch!

He takes a nap on the dock!

He sharpens his axe...

...and uses it!

Finally, Susan gets around to launching Operation: Get Back At The Grope-y Gardener: she strolls out onto her balcony wearing only a towel, then sips Riunite as if she's straight from a Jackie Collins novel.

Okay, in reality that's only Phase One of her plan. She continues the seduction approximately 9 hours later, when it's pitch black outside...insert helpful moon shot!

Susan's plan includes actually sleeping with the gardener- boy, this really teaches him a lesson! He suggests they partake in another round, but instead, Susan does her green-eyed thing, turns into some sort of a monster, and kills him with a garden implement. Okay, I guess that really teaches him a lesson.

Soon enough, Susan's victims don't actually have to trespass against her in order for her to unleash the NOMED lurking inside. Poor Aunt Cora, for example, shows up for a visit only to find herself floating around and killed dead thanks to her monsteriffic niece.

One person spared Susan's wrath is Elsie the maid (LaWanda Page...yes, Aunt Esther from Sanford & Son!). Intended as comic relief, Elsie is, in fact, a whopping slice of politically incorrect pie. Yet while she's given to saying things like "Great googily moogily!", Elsie is a rarity in that she's a black character who makes it 'til the end of the picture. When faced with a green fog emanating from Susan's bedroom, Elsie admits there's "Some strange shit goin' on in this house!", yells "No more grievin', I'm leavin'!", and splits.

There's so much more to Mausoleum, but I don't want to give away the whole package, as everyone should be allowed to discover it for him- or herself. Director Michael Dugan has truly given the world a gift! However, a few highlights:

- Susan undergoes hypnosis where she reveals her NOMED nature and corn teeth!

- There's the use of the term "facial fantasy"
- Dialogue includes "Yes...there's a history of possession."
- When possessed, Susan's depravity has no limits- she steals art from the mall!
- Something happens- I cannot reveal what it is, for you must witness it with your own eyes, but suffice it to say, it causes Marjoe fucking Gortner to pull what can only be called a Ridiculous Face of Pre-Death:

- While Mausoleum makes no sense as a whole, the very last shot of the film is so illogical that it actually defies the laws of science and mathematics. Even if you've never seen the film, your guess as to what the fuck is going on here is as good as mine:

- Then we get the end credits, which feature a tender song called "Free Again", written and sung by Frank Primato. It boasts lyrics like "Let's blow the fire dead...that's burning in my head..." and it's every bit as dreadful as you think it would be.

In case you haven't guessed, Mausoleum is a terrible, terrible film. The acting is horrendous, the dialogue atrocious, and the timing between the players is so off that every scene comes across like rejected audition tapes. There's a charm to Bobbie Bresee, but it's one borne of a performance that feels bathed in quaaludes. The sound is awful, as if there's a muted coffee pot percolating somewhere just off camera for the duration of the film. The direction is all but incompetent at times with dull compositions, pointless zooms and pans, and bizarre insert shots. The end of the film, featuring the "exorcism" (I use that term wicked loosely), takes 20 minutes but should only take seven. The creature effects, by genre vet John Carl Buechler, are '80s-style cheesy.

All of that is true, but oh how I loved this movie! I never wanted it to end, ever. On a scale of 1-10, I'd honestly rate it infinity. Lawd help me, it's true- the depths of deliciousness achieved are face-rockingly limitless. Forgive me, Shark Attack 3: Megalodon...step aside, Pieces...there's a new love of my life, and its name is Mausoleum!


Jordan in Texas said...

Never seen Masoleum before but your review has me riveted!

I likes me some trash! :)

Erich Kuersten said...

Eicats, you're off your rocker, you are possessed your damned self. Feets, don't fail me now!

"A charm borne of a performance that feels bathed in quaaludes." Sister, had me had "hello." you aint lost your phrasemaking skillz neither! !

Stacie Ponder said...

This movie is gloriously bad. Gloriously.

You know, I'm honestly surprised Elsie didn't bust out a "Feets, don't fail me now!"

And why are quaaludes so passe? I miss their prevalence.

timothy grant said...

"Great googily moogily!" must enter the lexicon as the next hot catch phrase. Let it be so.

Anonymous said...

I always wanted to know why the family in Troll 2 didn't just go visit the town of Llort and simply avoid the hassles they found at Nilbog.

I watched Mausoleum late one night and fell asleep...something tells me I need to watch it again while awake.

Unknown said...

This movie looks like a big bag of awesome.
Aunt Esther has two of the best lines in Shakes the Clown, one of which made me throw up in my mouth a little bit.

Unknown said...

Better than Pieces?!?!??! That is a tall, tall order. I will take your Pepsi challenge and see for myself if it can top the badness of "Shark Attack 3: Megalodon", "Pieces". If it can be on par with "Skidoo" then I will bow in proper reverence...

Anonymous said...

I fucking love this movie! Demon headed ta ta's, oh my!!!

Pokemon Postmon said...

I watcthed this film back in the 80s and, in my 'yoof' thought it was rubbish (apart from that bit you only hinted at! That somehow sticks in my mind...). I obviously must reassess this hunka demon cheese!

MrJeffery said...

OMG the screenshots are killer, thank you. I think I crossed paths with this film via TBS in the late 80s. Time for a revisit.

EegahInc said...

Add me to the cult of Masoleum. This was the first movie I ever saw in a theater after closing time and it ensured I would be working at cinemas for years afterward hoping for more such moments. I'm pretty sure it was Elsie that sealed the deal.

Bill Walsh said...

My face might have been off-rocked had Aunt Esther said to Ms. Nomed, “You ol’ heathen!”

Because I’m a horrible compulsive proofreader: not a trowel. I believe that’s a hand cultivator. I know nothing about gardening, but am compelled to find these things out. I am ashamed.

Stacie Ponder said...

Nah, Bill, you're right, I made a boo boo. I split the difference and changed it to "implement". Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This is the greatest movie ever made! Give it to me over "The Godfather" and "Citizen Kane" any day! The DVD however stinks! The UK version which I have, is pan and scan and looks like it was transferred from an old Betamax copy and the sound is totally inaudable! What this film needs is a three disc anamorphic enhanced widescreen release, with directors commentary, deleted scenes, goofs, extended directors cut, remastered isolated music score - not to mention a deluxe 30 page glossy booklet featuring stills and on set/ location pictures. That should do it!

Stacie Ponder said...

Somebody get Criterion on the phone!

Ryan Clark said...

I may have to watch this immediately. I've had the DVD sitting here for ages and haven't watched it yet, but your review has me curious! ;)

Eddie The Head said...

This movie is great cheese, and Bobbie Bresee is one sexy woman. And the demon with the chomping breasts was pure genius! To bad the version on the DVD along with Blood Song is cut.

Christopher said...

Where can I find this ... immediately? Is it on one of them thar schlock 50-packs that dominate my viewing habits? Speaking of 50-packs, have y'all seen "Funeral Home" with Stephen Miller as the unforgettable Billy Hibbs??? THERE'S a gardner who wouldn't lose in a battle with a Nome.

Amanda H. said...

YAY I'm glad you reviewed this movie! There isn't an article on Wikipedia last time I checked. OMG, its the craziest thing ever. The "SCREEEEEEEEEEEE!" noise every time she does her does her green eyed nonsense, the black maid going "Screw THIS, I'm out of here.", stealing art from the mall oh noes, and yeah the demon tatas.
I need to rewatch it now. XD