Every week, I scour Netflix for a movie rated at one star and put it in my queue, suffering through it for your entertainment so that you don’t have to. In the past, I’ve taken on anime cancer demons, softcore Iraq War porn and racist ventriloquism, and this week, it’s a movie that’s terrible even by Troma Films’ nonexistent standards.
TALES FROM THE CRAPPER (2003)
Starring: Julie Strain’s impressive collection of wigs. And also her vagina.
Last week, I interviewed IFC’s Matt Singer, and it came up that he used to be an intern at Troma, the film studio that produced The Toxic Avenger and Sgt. Kabukiman: NYPD, and, as a distribution house, brought you more than its fair share of Worst of Netflix honorees. As you might expect, this caught my attention, and over the course of the conversation, Singer started telling me about Tales from the Crapper.
According to him, Tales from the Crapper came about when a producer who was given money to make two feature-length Troma films came back with two completely unrelated – and, needless to say, absolutely terrible – forty-minute short films. The only thing they had in common was that adult film actress Julie Strain (star of 2001’s Sex Court: The Movie) was in both, and for Troma, that was enough of a reason to stitch them together as a 98-minute anthology hosted by studio co-founder Lloyd Kaufman. And what’s more, even the staff at Troma realized how thoroughly unwatchable the movies were, so the combination into one film was accompanied by production staff and interns overdubbing the soundtracks with new voices and other dubious “improvements.”
More than anything else, that’s what piqued my interest: A movie so bad that even Troma thought it was abysmal? This, I had to see.
And it is the single worst movie I have ever watched in my entire life.
It’s not like you don’t know what you’re getting into: After a lingering shot of a dog taking a dump, Lloyd Kaufman shows up wearing a garbage bag as a cloak to set things up in a vignette that also stars former Tromite James Gunn, and then moves right into the first phenomenally atrocious story. Like all Troma films, it’s basically just an excuse to get girls to get naked, thus: an alien comes to earth to murder strippers.
A simple enough plot, but about the time the shot of a hobo masturbating enters its fourth minute…
…you start to understand where things might’ve gone off the rails.