Friday, November 13, 2009

Stuff Stephanie in the Incinerator (1989), Or Where Else Would You Stuff That Slut?

Dearest friends, it is I, the Duke of DVD, back again to shove your face into the steaming excrement pile that is MMMMad cinema. Once more I cannot stop myself from watching another cinematic abortion from the fine folks at Troma. Today I will be discussing the finer points of a rabid debacle of a film called Stuff Stephanie in the Incinerator, a movie so vile and awesome that I can safely say I vomited a little in my mouth by the end of it, and felt the need to immediately schedule an exorcism followed by a high colonic.

To understand Stuff Stephanie in the Incinerator, one must first throw out any preconceived notions as to WHY we would want to stuff Stephanie into an incinerator. Friends, the "why" doesn't matter. There could be many reasons. Perhaps Stephanie sat upon and crushed your favorite cat whilst in the throes of a particularly angry match of charades. Could be that Stephanie paid a gypsy in sexual favors to curse you, thus rendering your wang useless, or your vagina dusty, as the case may be.

No, friends, we don't care WHY Stephanie needs to be burned to ash, we only know that it must happen! Let us explore, shall we?

Our movie opens with a simple credit sequence informing us that the movie was written and directed by a gentleman named Don Nardo. For those not in the know, Don Nardo took over the Nardo family after the original Don, named Giuseppe by his family but usually referred to as Don Fabulous by his friends, committed suicide by self-inflicting over 34 stab wounds to his own back. Seizing the reins, Don Nardo commenced to carving out a small film empire, including such delights as Poke Ernie in the Anus and Expose Ebert to the Elements, before finally writing and directing his magnum opus, Stuff Stephanie in the Incinerator.

The first scene is set in a darkened airplane hangar. A lone mechanic works on an engine from a twin prop plane. Bidding his coworkers a good night, he is left alone. But not for long! Out of the shadows step two men in long trench coats. Saying nothing, they proceed to rough up the mechanic before finally stealing a gold ring off his hand. They then bind his hands and force a plastic sack over his head, heedless of the suffocation warnings. The scene fades.

"We're from the gas company. Your bill is WAY overdue!"

We switch to the mechanic, waking up on the floor of an opulent study, inexplicably wearing a tuxedo. Looking groggily around, we see occultish paintings and what appears to be a birdcage with a black curtain over it. He walks down a hallway and discovers a bedroom with a sleeping girl in it. He reaches out and touches her hand, causing her eyes to spring open. She tells him it's good that he's dressed, because supper is ready. Somehow she knows his name (Paul) and tells him hers is Stephanie. Finally, the titular Stephanie! So far we see no reason as to why one would stuff her into an incinerator, but the night is young.

"Please pay no attention to my Adam's apple!"

She bids him to follow her, ignoring his questions as to what (the fuck) is going on. The tour of the house is cut short by a dinner bell. They head to the dining room, where they (and we) are greeted by the ugly visage of Roberta, who is quite obviously a man in drag, but we'll get to that later. Roberta bids them to sit and eat. Paul begins to relax a little, but still wants to know what's going on. Roberta tells him that he's there to basically sex Stephanie while Roberta watches, a prospect that turns Paul's (and our) stomach. He jumps up and tries to flee, finding all the doors and windows locked.

"Oh yeah, baby. Work that loom!"

Paul comes back to the dining room to find Roberta gone and Stephanie still sitting there. We then cut to a scene of Paul sitting on the floor, looking distraught, and Stephanie trying to comfort him. Then we flash to another scene with Paul waking up from a daze on a couch, with Roberta sitting uncomfortably close to him in a chair. Before we can process this series of scenes, Paul threatens Roberta with bodily harm unless she lets him go. Suddenly, two suit-wearing thugs are in the room, one of them armed with a hunting rifle. We see that these are the same trench coat dudes who kidnapped Paul in the beginning.

Paul then utters the immortal line: "Geez, I'm no lawyer, but it seems to me there must be some law against sexual deviance!" while facing a window. He turns to find the room empty. Paul then hatches a plan that involves using a letter opener to short out the lights of the parlor he's always in, which gives him and Stephanie time enough to climb up into the room's chimney, making their escape. Hounded by the sounds of dogs in pursuit, they run all over the place, through the woods, finally ending up in what appears to be a work shed on the property. Not content to just hide, they begin making out and finally "do it," off camera thankfully. It must be mentioned here that none of the principal actors, Stephanie included, is much of a looker.

Stephanie... getting stuffed.

They wake from a post-coital nap to find that they are somehow inexplicably still in Roberta's house, in the basement to be exact, and that Roberta has been watching them this whole time from the top of some stairs, employing the use of some opera binoculars no less! Going back upstairs, Roberta confronts Paul in the parlor with one more task to fulfill: sex up Roberta! In response to this, Paul utters another fantastic line: "I'll see you in Hell, first, you ol' WARTHOG!" To this, Roberta walks over and pushes a switch on the wall, causing a hidden elevator to descend from the ceiling!

Inside is a goon with Stephanie in handcuffs. He pulls her over to what I thought was a draped birdcage, but instead it is revealed to be an iron maiden! Before she can run to the hills, Stephanie is stuffed in the iron maiden! Up the Irons! Before it can shut on her, however, Paul relents and agrees to bone Roberta. They start to kiss when suddenly Roberta breaks character, talking in the voice of a dude, asking Stephanie if he has to go through with this. At this point, I arched my eyebrow and sat back to hopefully answer the burning question of just what (the fuck) is going on in this movie?

"It looks like I picked the wrong time to invest in Indo-Chinese corn futures!"

To sum up the next few scenes in the best way I can, I can tell you that "Paul" is really a man named Jared, a wealthy dude who is addicted to elaborate role-play shenanigans. "Stephanie" is actually named Casey, and is Paul's girlfriend. "Roberta" is actually Robert, a hired actor and friend of the couple. After paying Robert $5000 for his work, they drive him to the airport, but stop at a gas station along the way. While there, it is revealed that Casey is sleeping with a mechanic named Nicky, an ugly, beastly, bulging man who she's seeing on the side. After dropping Robert at the airport, the couple head back home.

Nicky, the sex magnet.

Late that night, Casey is awakened by noise downstairs. Turns out, it's Robert, who didn't get on his plane and instead stayed in town in an attempt to rob Jared. Casey is unhappy with Jared, explaining to Robert that she is forced to constantly partake in Jared's elaborate performances and is given a pittance monthly allowance. The two keep talking and eventually hatch a plan that is pretty fucking retarded. Basically, they will kill Jared, dispose of his body, and sit back for 7 YEARS until he's declared missing, and then somehow they will inherit and then split his fortune.

The incinerator, primed for stuffin'.

At this point, I was ready to call Don Nardo and tell him to go fuck himself, but I stuck with it, because Casey and Robert armed themselves with fireplace pokers. No good can come from people arming themselves with fireplace pokers. They creep upstairs, finding Jared asleep under the covers. They bash him repeatedly, then wrap him up, covers and all, inside some plastic. They then drag his body downstairs... TO THE INCINERATOR! Wasn't Stephanie/Casey supposed to get stuffed in there? Just wanting to see someone, anyone, stuffed into the incinerator, I let it play out. Robert starts to double-cross Casey, picking up a stick of wood to hit her with, when suddenly she makes a gruesome discovery: who they thought to be Jared is instead Casey's lover, the mongoloid mechanic Nicky!

Hearing voices upstairs, they head back up (not even bothering to stuff Nicky in the incinerator!) to find a television in the kitchen, playing them a video of Jared and Nicky in the parlor, talking it up. Jared apparently filmed this, somehow knowing the plot on his life and arranging to have Nicky take his place. Jared then strides into the kitchen like Teddy "Fucking" Roosevelt, wearing a full-blown old-time African safari get-up, complete with hunting rifle! He pulls out a hourglass and informs both of them that they have 1 minute head start before he starts firing.

Casey and Robert take off. Of course, the house is locked down tight. Stephanie finds a pair of scissors to arm herself with, but quickly runs around a corner, impaling Robert with them on accident! Casey then runs headlong into the parlor, finding Jared with his gun. He forces her at gunpoint to enter the iron maiden, when at the last second Robert comes screaming up and knocks Jared into the maiden instead! Casey takes off running, but Jared "shoots" her in the leg. (We hear the gun, but there's no smoke or bullet wound.) She falls, managing to hit the elevator switch before collapsing, right underneath where the elevator is coming down! Robert, in the meantime, collapses. Very soon Jared is dead in the maiden, Robert dead from scissor impaling, and Casey crushed underneath the elevator.

"Grip my love gun, baby."

Suddenly, we cut to Casey, Jared, and Robert sitting at the kitchen table, watching a video of their "deaths." That's right folks, Don Nardo has once again pulled the rug out from under us with yet another switcheroo! A crew (who includes the two thugs we kept seeing) comes in and begins dismantling the sets used to fool us. Everyone goes outside and leaves in their respective cars. As a final slap to the audience's face, it is revealed that Jared and Nicky are in fact a couple. The movie ends with them in the back of a limo, arguing that they each enjoyed their respective make-out scenes with Casey a bit too much.

"I have a confession: I just don't like Golden Girls."

So, in conclusion: What The Fuck?!?! I can't decide if this movie was clever or extremely shitty. I'm going to go with option B. The fact that Stephanie, and in fact NO ONE, was stuffed into an incinerator just seals the deal. 0 Thumbs, people. My first ever (I believe) 0 Thumbs review. There really isn't ANY redeeming factor of this movie. No one gets naked, no one gets stuffed into anything really, other than a fake iron maiden. The movie title held so much promise. If I were to make a movie called Stuff Stephanie in the Incinerator, you can be damned well sure someone named Stephanie, at some point in the film, would be getting her fine ass stuffed and then stuffed into an incinerator!

Incidentally, the Vicar and I sat over expensive cognac and some imported mustard last night and discussed why one would use an incinerator as a means for corpse disposal. Behold the places we came up with, and the reasons not to use said places:
  • Laundry chute: Too noisy, too cumbersome
  • Dumpster out back: leaves more than ashes as evidence
  • Closet: too much noise, likelihood of escape/discovery
  • Toilet: messy, impractical, possibly impossible due to Stephanie's girth
  • Volvo: doors don't lock from the outside
  • Multiple garbage bags: messy, possibly no Hefty on hand, causing spillage
  • Crawlspace: risks Gacey-esque discovery. Lime smell ruins home value.
  • Air conditioning duct: noisy. smell permeates building eventually.
  • Night deposit slot at local bank: bonus points for humorous next-day discovery, but time involvement too much
  • Fireplace: insufficient temperature, smoke backs up into house.
  • Old Style bank safe: might forget the combination.

So you can see, the incinerator is clearly the only place Stephanie could safely be stuffed! And yet Don Nardo dropped the ball that was seemingly attached to his hands via Gorilla Glue thanks to that awesome title. Inexcusable.

Don't try to pass it off on anyone else! I know it was you, Nardo! You broke my heart! You broke my heart!


Anonymous said...

Maybe you should demand a refund from the Lloyd Kaufman. I'm sure he re-titled this thing for the Troma release. It's elsewhere known as "In Deadly Heat", which actually doesn't sound like it has much more to do with the goings-on, but is certainly less suggestive.
This sort of bait-and-switch marketing really frosts my cookies. We don't ask for much of our movies, but if the word "stuff" is in the title - as a verb - then there better be some stuffing happening - of one variety or another.

TimTE01 said...

You know, the sad thing is that I'm crazy enough to rent a film that has that title. At least now, I know that I should not.

Of course, I was still dumb enough to watch 'Day of the Dead 2: Contagium,' so I'm by no means perfect!

Al Bruno III said...

I saw this video many times in my youth but never had the never to rent it. Now after reading this review I am glad I didn't.

You have my gratitude for sitting through this film, you are like a gynecologist in a convent daring to probe in places where others are afraid to even look...

db said...

I dunno, maybe Stuff Stephanie in the Incinerator started out as an industrial safety film about the dangers of unsupervised disposal units, along the lines of Follow That Trail Of Skittles Into The Trash Compactor or Go Play Hide And Seek In That Abandoned Freezer From The Fifties Down By The Sewage Pond. I kinda doubt it, tho. Zero thumbs!

Uranium Willy said...

I was actually going to get this eventually based on the suggestive title alone. I have done that before and realized the old adage of judging a book by ts cover applies to tapes and DVDs as well.

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