RETRO REVIEW: Blood Sucking Freaks (1976) and an interview with director JOEL REED!

A few years back Zach Horiates, Bryan Enright (@thehorrorjew) and I (@buddyhorror) had the privilege of interviewing the infamous Joel Reed to get his take on the sick and twisted movie he created and his thoughts on what Troma did to it…This was the show we interviewed him on (Interview starts about 15 minutes in) but if you want to take a listen its a good two hour horror show also featuring local horror star Genoveva Rossi.
The title conjures up images of a vampire movie but, as with any Troma flick, you rarely get what you expect. Bloodsucking Freaks (aka The Incredible Torture Show) is not a trademark Troma slapstick comedy horror but an extremely depraved and embroidered exploitation flick that is not without it’s very darkly humorous charms. As expected the movie is massively over the top, filled with gratuitous amounts of excessive gore, startlingly sadistic acts of abuse and evil and an abundance of nudity and perverted sexual acts. No other entertainment company would release a movie incorporating and glamorising slavery, kidnap, rape, torture, S&M, cannibalism and a midget named Ralphus.
The movie caused a fair amount of controversy (which is always good movie marketing), struggling to get released the movie was heavily cut so that it could gain an “R” rating but was shipped to theatres uncut. Troma was sued by the MPAA for improper uses of the “R” logo when a woman complained that the movie had upset her little boy (!!!) and the deception was uncovered.Director Joel M. Reed does not deliver a complex or sensible plot as that would get in the way of the depravity and would go against the Troma code. Master Sardu and his faithful and diminutive assistant Ralphus run a theatre of the macabre where they put on sadomasochistic torture shows to entertain the general public but little do the general public know that there are no special effects or magic tricks involved in the show. The participants are brainwashed kidnap victims and the torture and dismemberment is real. Sardu obviously loves his work and indulges in his twisted fantasies in all aspects of his life with his indoctrinated sex slaves satisfying his whims at all times whether it be around the home or in his dungeon where the cannibalistic caged girls live.Creasy Silo, theatre critic extraordinaire, questions the artfulness of Sardu’s show and soon gets a more detailed insight into the work of the master of the macabre as he is encouraged to give a more positive review in a not too subtle way and is given a starring role in the show. Although Sardu is obviously a sick and twisted individual he is still willing to take Silo’s criticisms on board and decides to kidnap famous ballerina Natasha DeNatalie to give a more respectable level of artisticness to his show.

With the help of corrupt cop Detective Tucci, Natasha’s footballer boyfriend, Tom Maverick, is determined to uncover the truth behind Sardu’s operation and rescue his lover.

A bizarre and irreverent plot which is seemingly just an excuse to exploit every taboo in a movie and take it to its distasteful extreme,Bloodsucking Freaks has to be seen to be believed. With the usual histrionic characters that are expected in a Troma movie and the excessive lengths that the plot evolves to shock and disgust, this is not a movie to take seriously. Fans of hardcore exploitation movies such as Last House on the Left and I Spit on your Grave may find Bloodsucking Freaks a bit difficult to digest with its campiness and farcical interpretation of the genre but would have to appreciate the depths of distaste that the movie is willing to sink to in order to achieve the desired reaction from the audience. A definite cult classic and a defining moment in Troma history in the guise of a sadistic and torturous voyage into the brainwashing and slavery industry where women are used as dartboards before being fed to their feral sisters.

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About Robert (Buddy Horror) Smith 21 Articles
No. It's not that Robert W. Smith... I'm not the lead singer of the Cure. I am however, a fan of the Cure... Let's begin. I was born in Virginia and raised in New Jersey. I am happily married to my wife Kiersten Smith and a father of one to my handsome boy Asher Grayson Smith. Yes! His first name is because of the one and only Bruce Campbell most famously known from Sam Rami's "The Evil Dead" I started late in the horror game but I became a fast learner. I didn't watch my first horror movie till I was 10.. (The Haunted Mansion in Disney scared the hell out of me when I was a kid). It took 4 years until my dad was able to get me to watch The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (original). From that moment I was hooked. Over the years I have hosted a radio show called B Movies with Buddy, Bryan, and Zach with Bryan Enright and Zach Horiates on WNJC 1360AM. Together we have over 200 hours of interviews of some of the best interviews from Bill Mosley (House of 1000 Corpses / Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2) to John Russo (Co Director of Night of the Living Dead / My Uncle John's a Zombie) It was probably some of the best times of my time in the scene. I love collecting horror movies with a collection of over 300 and counting it is one of my most prized possessions. I love collecting full series of a movies sequels. Even if some of them aren't the best. Follow me @buddyhorror on Twitter for random horror goodness and more from The Horror Syndicate! Top 5 Movies 1. The Evil Dead 2. A Nightmare on Elm Street (Robert Englund Original) 3.House of 1000 Corpses 4.Dawn of the Dead (Remake) 5.Scream 4