A Review by Judith Furlow ©2011
531 Productions presentation
Starring: Leif Fuller, Patrick O’Driscoll, Lilly Maher, Ben Chinburg, Hudson Hongo, and Yonatan Schultz, Lloyd Kaufmann
Produced by: Sara Larson and Henry Weintraub
Written, Edited, and Directed by: Henry Weintraub
Distributed by Chemical Burn Entertainment
“Melvin” is the story of a nerdy, high-school teen named Melvin Purvis, who unfortunately, seems to attract all of the wrong attention from the local bullies. As we discover in flashbacks, Melvin dies in a prank gone horribly wrong. Years later, we meet Norton Pincus, a nerdy college student that is a friend of Melvin’s sister, Wendy. After walking home through a cemetery one evening after a party, Norton is attacked by a zombified Melvin, bitten on the leg, and we all know what that means. Melvin’s ghost appears to Norton, telling him that “he needs to set things right” and that his death wasn’t an accident. Scared and confused, Norton is alarmed as he begins vomiting blood after having nightmares of people being murdered in grizzly ways. Meanwhile, as his relationship with Wendy blossoms, and he is taunted by Melvin’s ghost, Norton is desperately trying to hold onto his sanity.
“Melvin” is a great flick. Think “Toxic Avenger” by Troma films and you’ll understand that “Melvin” is meant to be comical and squeamish at the same time. There are a lot of imaginative death scenes executed with great detail. I have never seen a beer bottle used in such a way to make me want to gag before. Lots of blood, tearing of flesh, and creative zombie killing kept me interested throughout the entire film. The soundtrack adds to the morbid ambiance of “Melvin” as do the graphics.
The acting is very good. Standouts include: Leif Fuller, Patrick O’Driscoll, Lilly Maher, Ben Chinburg, Hudson Hongo, and Yonatan Schultz. Every character was interesting, funny, and complemented the movie. There is also a second feature added in the movie called “Night of the Driller”, starring Lloyd Kaufman, President of Troma Entertainment, that is entertaining by itself.
The only criticism that I have is that I didn’t know that Melvin’s story is told through flashbacks until about 20 minutes into the film. Although there is a visual difference in the clips distinguishing Melvin’s story from Norton’s, I think that it would have been helpful to display a year at the first frame of Melvin’s flashback, and also when telling Norton’s story, to give the viewer a timeline.
Bonus features on the DVD include a behind the scenes making of “Melvin”, “Night of the Driller” trailer, “Melvin” trailers, and a production slideshow.
I give “Melvin” 8 severed heads out of 10. This is how it’s done, folks!
Click on the image above to buy this fun party movie!