Terror Firmer (1999)

Within the first five minutes of Troma’s Terror Firmer, viewers are treated to a man’s leg being ripped off (which he is subsequently beaten with), a brain-splattering suicide set to the tune of “Amazing Grace”, puke, a “de-fetusing” (a woman’s unborn child is literally taken from her the hard way), a bathroom sex scene, at least three people getting pissed on by a blind guy, and more. The unrated version of the film is 114 minutes long. You can’t even imagine what’s in store. Do the math.

Terror Firmer is, in a way, the Jay and Silent Bob Strikes Back of Troma films, as the film is crammed full of characters and jokes referring to other Troma films. The Toxic Avenger is here, along with Seargent Kabukiman, references to Dolphin Boy, and more. Most of the Troma regulars appear as well, including Will Keenan, Trent Haaga, and Joe Fleishaker. Even Troma’s head honcho and Terror Firmer director Lloyd Kaufman appears in the film as himself, sort of.

Lloyd Kaufman is Larry Benjamin, a blind film director who is working on his greatest production ever — yet another Toxic Avenger sequel. Unfortunately for Benjamin, the cast and crew associated with the movie begin dying strange and extremely gory deaths, dished out by a beautiful yet mysterious woman. In the middle of all this commotion is a love triangle between special effects mad man Jerry (Trent Haaga), chivalrous boom operator Casey (Will Keenan), and innocent young Jennifer (Alyce LaTourelle).

Filming of the movie is temporarily halted when the soundman, aka the Toddster (who tells women they can suck on the Tod Rod and swallow the Tod Wad) leaves the set, taking his sound equipment with him. A few minutes later, we see the Toddster with a funnel shoved up his ass and cocaine being poured into it. Moments later we get to see the Toddster’s brains after his head is beaten open with a very violent bong attack.

And so goes the movie. Characters are introduced and killed off one by one. When people aren’t busy dying they’re usually either expousing horribly written dialogue or merely having sex.

Terror Firmer is a shotgun blast of ideas that hit the viewer so often and so quickly that you’re usually barely over the last gag before the next one hits. It’s like the writers wrote down 500 funny ideas on sticky notes, randomly pulled them out of a hat, and wrote them into the script in that order, 30 seconds apart. So many shocking ideas and images hit you throughout Terror Firmer that by the time two French guys pick up a hooker, get sick, puke all over each other and the hooker, jump the car, and land on a naked man’s head in the middle of the road causing their car to explode, somehow it seems normal.

Some of the writing is witty, but you’ll have to wade through the rest of the schlock to find it. When Casey makes a comment about some of Spielberg’s classic films, like “1941 and Hook,” I got a big laugh. Two minutes later, Casey is having “pickle sex” with Jennifer. That’s the type of movie Terror Firmer is. When it’s funny it’s funny, when it’s gross it’s gross, and when it’s disturbing (particularly near the end) it’s disturbing.

The 2 disc DVD set includes three separate commentary tracks (Director/Editors/Actors), deleted scenes, bloopers, audition footage, trailers, a 99-minute documentary on independent filmmaking, music videos, public service announcements, and lots and lots of Troma related advertising.

Terror Firmer isn’t for everyone. Hell, it’s not for 99% of the population. If the thought of someone’s daughter going mute because her mother’s head was crushed in a trample of people makes you chuckle, or you grin when a guy gets smashed between two trucks, loses both legs, and screams his dying words (“Support independent films!”), then you could be a member of that one percent of the population this film is intended for. If anything in this review sounded remotely offensive or disturbing to you, forget it.

I haven’t even mentioned the good stuff.

Comments are closed.