Welcome back Retrocreeps ! A quick review of what has come before: Chinese superheroes, Yor’s World, spelunking nightmare, squirt gun warfare, waterlogged undead, and satanic rockers! What could be in store for you next? How about a group of undead bikers resurrected by ancient witchcraft…and frogs? Yes fiends, today we examine my #4 pick in my Top 10 Films: Psychomania!
I was aware of Psychomania as a child, but never had the chance to view it. That changed one day when a friend let me borrow his VHS copy of the film in the late 90’s. Upon viewing this heady blend of supernatural hijinks, musical numbers, and outright comedy I was hooked!
Our story centers on teenage psychopath Tom Latham. Tom is the leader of a biker gang, who wear helmets painted to look like skulls, known as The Living Dead. Tom also has an affinity for the supernatural, fostered by his séance loving mother, and her equally outré butler. He also has a desire to become immortal. To aid Tom in his mad quest, his mother allows him access to a room within their home that will offer an individual the secret of achieving eternal life if the subject is deemed worthy. Tom’s father had died attempting to retrieve the secret of the room years prior, but Tom does not succumb to such a fate. And how does one cheat death? What is the arcane rite necessary to defy nature? You have to commit suicide and believe that you’ll come back to life. Yup, that’s it.
So of course Tom does just that. The Living Dead, believing Tom has perished, bury him atop his bike while singing a nice folksy ballad. Well, Tom doesn’t stay down for long, and upon his return from the grave, he convinces the other members of The Living Dead to commit suicide as well, which they do in a series of almost slapstick vignettes. Most of the members are successful at resurrecting themselves and the gang meets once more at an ancient circle of standing stones known as “The Seven Witches”, and then they embark on a rampage, before finally meeting their demise by becoming a new druid circle of stone. There is a toad in the film as well.
Does Psychomania sound weird and disjointed to you? Well it most certainly is! It’s also somehow charming, funny and most of all entertaining! You can purchase Psychomania here!
Once again I’d like to thank fellow Team Retroist member Sean Hartter for providing the amazing illustration (in my opinion his finest illustration to date) that accompanies this article!
Next aquatic terror comes to a festival in New England..and I’m not talking about Jaws either! Stay Spooky!
Please follow The Retroist on Twitter.