Patton Oswalt has a great bit called “Death Bed” wherein he tells the story about this positively ri-freaking-diculous movie about a bed possessed by a demon that eats people. He goes over the difficulties of getting a movie made in Hollywood, all the struggle to sell an idea, get it through development and eventually production. It’s incredible that all this work went into getting Death Bed made. It’s hilarious, and it culminates with him talking about how he’s started and fallen off with dozens of his own projects, but somehow the guy who came up with Death Bed pushed through and got it made.
Thus, I have a weird respect for absolutely bonkers ideas, so when I came across Attack of the Killer Donuts here’s what I said aloud, alone in my room at my computer:
“Yes. Let me see this dream wrought unto reality.”
Or something like that, I may have just said “Oh shit!”
The trailer opens with Level 33 Entertainment’s logo- they’re a distribution company that traffics in films right alongside Attack of the Killer Donuts. The thing I love about the trailer, especially the opening moments is the dissonance. Ohh, a classic car, so this is a 1950s movie? Oh wait, there’s a 1985 Corolla in the background… I’m expecting the donuts to use some devil powers to rise up for revenge and the trailer delivers, showing a crime against donuts right at the start.
We get all the best of horror setups: a girl at the donut shop hearing the menacing noise of what I must assume is the first of the homicidal pastries (or a very excited and thirsty dog), and a mad scientist with a fake dead rat in one hand, and a syringe of the ooze that makes teenaged ninjas of sewer dwelling reptiles.
In what I’m sure will be one hell of a narrative confluence of completely reasonable events: the ooze infects donuts, and they donuts grow teeth:
Guys look at that. All good horror plays on some innate, primal fear we all have. The unknown is the best element of this: the original Alien is terrifying because you don’t see the monster until the end. Supernatural horrors like The Exorcist or Paranormal Activity work because we don’t see the specter that’s the true monster and our imaginations take flight to grip us with terror.
But we see the monster here. So, what then is the primal fear they’re playing on? It’s not an innate fear of pastries or carbs- those are taught to us by society.
There was a film called Teeth released in 2007, that basically just went to the logical next step of making vaginas horrifying by making a literally horrifying vagina. Guys, I really don’t know which is the better artistic/symbolic route for horror or storytelling, but I’ll be damned if I don’t respect the hell out of Attack of the Killer Donuts’ batshit attempt at it.
From there we get what you’d expect: some of the worst CGI of bouncing, fanged donuts attacking people by the dozen, and our group of plucky teens coming to the realization that the donuts are out to get them. All standard stuff.
Which is what I expected, it’s basically your standard D-Movie monster flick, with all the greatest hits on display. Lots of quick cuts, screaming, the plucky teens clearly figuring out a way to save the day, blah blah blah.
Or at least that’s what I thought until this:
Yes, the cop is poorly mimicking using a nightstick (with both hands for some stupid reason) to fight through hundreds of killers donuts that are now somehow able to fly?
Here’s a surprise for you: SEE THIS MOVIE.
Seriously, get your friends together. Have a two drink minimum for each member gathered before you press play, and then just lay into this thing. Here at PopLurker, we’re fans of MST3K, and making fun of terrible, cheesy, D-Rate Monster Movies is a tradition as American as abstinence only sex-ed.
When your friends get mad at you for all the vagina jokes, you can send them right here. Bon Appetit.
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