The Trail of the Screaming Forehead is the latest film from comedy b-movie extroadinaire Larry Blamire. As one of the most consistently funny and stylistically pure filmmakers working today, his career spans across different genres, the majority of which are untouched by modern filmmakers. His best works are arguably his forays into horror – the hilarious Lost Skeleton of Cadavra being a personal favourite.
His films seem simple enough but once one looks beneath the surface it’s possible to see just how complex they really are – an assertion that Blamire himself would probably deny. They are non-ironic but deeply self-aware; they are an affectionate piss-take of films that are routinely mocked, but a piss-take that is done with a real sense of what makes those classic movies so wonderful to watch. His films are for those who enjoy The Thing From Another World rather than The Third Man; The Cat People rather than Casablanca.
With this in mind, Blamire’s latest offering is a triumph. It is a masterpiece of mis-delivered lines, bizarre musical queues and confused dialogue. It’s difficult to express just how this is achieved as Blamire always seems in complete control of the chaos. It may well be difficult to make a good movie, but it must be even harder to make a good bad movie. It’s standard Blamire territory but somehow he is able to present audiences with something new and fresh every single time.
The cast is amazing, as ever. It’s the Blamire usuals – Fay Masterson and Andrew Parks as the scientists working as the Institute of Brain Studying, and other talents round out the cast – the stand-out character being Big Dan Freighter, whose odd facial expressions and misjudged intonations threaten to steal every scene he’s in.
If alien foreheads don’t strike you as inherently funny, then perhaps this film is not for you. If that’s the case, you should be thoroughly ashamed of yourself.