Monday, June 18, 2012

MST3K: Episode 613 - The Sinister Urge

I'm watching all of the Mystery Science Theater 3000 episodes in order. More about that here and here.

Episode 613: The Sinister Urge

First aired: Comedy Central on 5 November 1994
Availability: Amazon DVD, Rhino (Volume 9/out of print)

Ed Wood's best?
Ed Wood.

When those two words are used to describe a film, they usually tell you all you need to know about a film.

Porno.

When that word is used to describe a film, it usually tells you all you need to know about a film.

Put them together and you get ... Ed Wood porno.

Only, this isn't an Ed Wood porno. It's an Ed Wood film about porno.

Porn distributors make plans.
So, yeah, the truth is that the using "porno" to describe this film can be misleading. It's not a porno; it's about porno.

But, the Ed Wood descriptor? It applies.

What's it all about?

Young ladies are being murdered, and the police think the local porn industry is to blame, and it is, because Dirk is driven to murder by images of naked women, so his bosses Johnny and Gloria, who run the local porno distribution with the backing of "the syndicate," decide to remove Dirk from the scene, but he ends up killing Johnny and is shot by Gloria who though she was killing Johnny. Or something. The end.
Clean is goodStay clean!
Word is that this film actually made money, but Wood, who wrote, directed, and produced, had sold his interest and missed out on the profits. Similar to the situation of The Violent Years, which Wood wrote, I haven't been able to confirm the rumor. Could be that he just had bad luck. Or, it could be that the rumor isn't exactly true. Maybe Mythbusters will take it on one day.
Makin' dirty pictures.Fussin' with the police.
Anyway, it's not Wood's worst film. It's also more that just an Ed Wood film. It's an Ed Wood film, with part of another Ed Wood film thrown in for good measure. Or for budgetary concerns.

A girl notices posters for other Ed Wood film.
There's a scene where a fight breaks out between rival gangs over the distribution of porn (I think that's what it was about) that seems to come out of nowhere. And, it does, because Wood used the fight scene from another film he was trying to make (but never finished) and stuck it in this film.

Wood's message was that the porno industry was bad and led to violent crime. There's also a scene where a concerned citizen complains to the police that they shouldn't be focusing on stopping porn, but the police explain the connection between porn and more violent crime. Late in his career, Wood made porn films. I don't know if local teens fought over distribution of his films or if the head boss porn lady killed her henchmen over it. I'm not sure I want to know. I don't think Ed Wood II, with Johnny Depp reprising his role would be a good thing.

Since Ed Wood films are usually shorter than most, a short film was needed to pad out the episode. So, M&tB learn about keeping clean and neat. How? By watching the short film, Keeping Clean and Neat, of course. They have fun with it.

Of course, we all had fun with it. Not just the riffing of the short film, but the entire episode.





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