Could this be the worst non-micro budgeted film of all time?!

by Martin Hafer

I am a bad movie buff. This doesn’t mean I always watch bad films. Heck, I often watch foreign films, art films, independent films as well as mainstream movies. But every so often, I like to actually watch a terrible movie because they are often so unintentionally funny! When it comes to bad films, few have seen as many as me. I’ve watched all of the films listed in Harry Medved’s brilliant book The 50 Worst Movies of All Time and have seen most of the ones listed on IMDB’s Bottom 100 (the list keeps changing, by the way, and I try hard to keep up with it).

So why am I writing about Slapstick (of Another Kind)–a film that debuted more than 30 years ago? It’s because I think I finally might have found the holy grail of bad movies….THE worst non-tiny budgeted film of all time! While there are undoubted a few films worse simply because they were made on shoestring budgets, this one has the distinction of having money behind it as well as REAL actors!! It also has the distinction of being physically painful to watch!! Somehow the filmmakers persuaded Jerry Lewis and Madeline Kahn to star in this god-awful mess of a film and it was based on a Kurt Vonnegut story…and he’s was real, honest-to-goodness respected writer! I can only assume they were holding their families hostage, as nothing else could explain their participating in it because it’s that bad. Obviously I am not the only one who thought the film was terrible, as the studio shelved it for two years before ultimately releasing it back in 1984!
The film is a super-bizarre, totally unfunny and awful sci-fi morality tale about how stupid mankind is. Rarely have I ever seen anything THIS tedious and awful!! And, as far as entertainment goes, I think it’s preferable to stare at vomit for 90 minutes than watch this movie.

It begins with a really crappy outer space scene where disembodied beings talk about sending twins to the United States to help them out. Apparently, they sent two to China but with poor results. As for the Chinese, they are all just a few inches high and fly about in UFOs! And, their leader is Pat Morita…yes, of Karate Kid fame! It’s supposed to be in the future…why the Chinese are tiny and fly about in UFOs is anyone’s guess. I assume this was supposed to be funny.

When the space children are born to their rich and sophisticated parents, they are hideous and the doctor (named ‘Frankenstein’…ha, ha?!) advises the parents to abandon them to his care. And for 15 years, they are pretty much left on their own while the servants who were supposed to be caring for them just partied. During this time, on their own, they learn a billion and one things and are very bright–but they look and act really stupid much of the time. In fact, it’s insultingly awful, as the film appears to make fun of mental retardation.

Later, the President of the United States arrives in Air Force One (which is powered by chicken crap) because the Chinese tell everyone the twins are ‘America’s greatest resource’…and things don’t go very well during the visit. This is all because the humans are apparently just too stupid to understand how wonderful, gifted and intelligent these giant ugly children are. What happens next? Who cares….but see this film if you must find out for yourself!

Not one bit of this film is the least bit funny or worthy of your attention. It’s loud, boorish and annoying from start to finish. A god-awful mess of a film that NEVER should have been released and it marks one of the lowest points in cinematic history. While almost no one has seen Jerry Lewis’ infamous The Day the Clown Cried (as he has refused to allow it to be released because, presumably, it’s THAT bad), it cannot be this bad….Ebola isn’t this bad!

Air Force One, apparently, isn’t the only thing running on chicken crap!

Martin’s Grade: F