Thursday, January 20, 2011

Big Junior review on Horror Yearbook

Movie Review: Big Junior (2010)
Published by Mario Dominick January 14th, 2011 in MOVIE REVIEWS (ALL) and Movie Reviews NEW (2000 & Up).

Scott Swan, at the time known only in small circles mainly for being a co-writer of John Carpenter’s Cigarette Burns and Pro-Life for Showtime’s “Masters of Horror” series and writer of the Skin and Bones episode of NBC’s “Fear Itself,” took the opportunity to direct his first feature in 2009 when he made the trip from Hollywood to Pittsburgh to co-direct the Toe Tag production of Maskhead with Fred Vogel. Having worked with a low budget extreme horror company like Toe Tag, he soon took it upon himself the next year to direct his own low budget horror effort under a production company he formed called EvilFlix. The result was Big Junior, a film he promoted online and took DVD pre-orders for while post-production was still underway. Without having released a trailer online, fans familiar with Scott’s previous work went into it pretty much blind for the most part. The question that remains, is how well does the film hold up to fan’s expectations?

Big Junior is a crime story that takes place in a motel room where a guy named Big Junior involved in drug trade is soon met up by a drug dealer and pimp named Fawn along with his whore girlfriend Lainey. The three settle in and proceed to have a fun time with booze and drugs and talking and Junior and Fawn talk about a Lee Marvin movie gun that Junior obtained. What appears to be a night where a deal is supposed to go off without a hitch soon hits a snag once it turns out that Fawn and Lainey have a double-crossing plan up their sleeves. Needless to say, their little plan backfires and they are soon met with the wrath of Junior’s big buddy Angel, a truly ruthless character and Junior along with the help of Angel turn Fawn and Lainey’s sleazy operation into a depraved, brutality-filled evening of torture and unspeakable acts.

For Swan’s second feature, and one done by himself after collaborating with Toe Tag, Big Junior doesn’t look to be something truly memorable when it first starts out, but soon it takes a very sick turn and the sleazy characters, dialogue, and atmosphere make the film totally nasty, offensive, raw, gritty, and brutal fun. The very claustrophobic setting really adds to the effectiveness of it and Hans Bruno does a fine job in the lead role as Big Junior. While it takes a few moments for the wheels to get set in motion, the offensive antics and racially-charged musical numbers by Junior get the sleaze factor pumped up to its fullest and soon after we are treated to some graphic scenes that involve vomiting and other bodily fluids. As far as descriptions, we should probably best leave it at that so the shock factor is more effective for viewers who haven’t seen it. Big Junior is a fine micro budget effort done much in the style of old school exploitation and crime films. You could probably call it “extreme noir” as the plot and small setting seem to be something found in old crime and mystery films of the ‘40s and ‘50s. Take a scenario from any of those films and add lots of vulgarity, drugs, sex, nudity, sleaze, violence, and torture and you have Big Junior.

The EvilFlix DVD release of Big Junior is a limited edition of 1000 copies and contains a behind-the-scenes featurette and a short film from Swan entitled Ghost of the Woman. Order your copy at

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