There is a family somewhere in New Jersey that craves flesh and blood, stripped clean off the bones of anyone who has the misfortune of stumbling across them. No, we aren’t talking about the ladies of “The Jersey Shore”. The family in question is from Tim Sullivan’s 2001 Maniacs: Field of Screams, and this past Saturday, July 17th, they descended on the sleepy little town of Metuchen looking for a bite to eat!
Director Sullivan was born in Metuchen, so having his East Coast premiere at the Forum Theater, a place he’d gone to all his life, was both a pleasure and an honor. It may not have been the LA red carpet gala from two nights before where a veritable who’s who of Hollywood horror creatives showed up, but Tim was beaming as if it was even better, greeting family and old friends alike and lacking the ability to stand in one place for more than five minutes like a fourteen-year-old on his first date.
When the theater began to fill with new faces alongside his old friends, he couldn’t have been happier. After a quick introduction, where I reminded the audience that the movie they were about to watch was NOT Avatar (or anything resembling any film with values, snazzy Hollywood polish or CGI effects), we were off.
The film itself seems tailor made for watching with a room full of rowdy friends and three bottles of vodka. To say it doesn’t take itself seriously is an understatement. The jokes come fast and furious … some making you laugh out loud, and some you’ll be groaning and covering your face in shame for even having heard it.
Alongside the hilarity is plenty of gore with the red stuff flying free across the faces of our Maniacs family as they grin with unbridled joy. This is a crew that loves their work. In fact, there’s only one thing the 2001 Maniacs crew loves more … BOOBS! I swear every female character but Lin Shaye flashed a nipple at least once. This is old school B-movie psychotica at its finest.
After the film we had a Q&A where Tim talked about striking the right balance between boobage and bloody gore, how to blow up a man’s head, Lin Shaye and her favorite stalk of corn (don’t ask, lest ye be haunted forever), his upcoming reality show for VH1 called “Scream Queens 2″ and his next movie project, which is set to be a serious vampire tale. Fans of Maniacs will be happy to hear he’s already been asked to make a Part 3 so your favorite cannibals will return! After a signing in the hall and some pictures under the Forum marquee, we were off to a bar for some drinks before heading out.
Watching a horror movie with a couple of friends at home is great, but watching an insane film like Maniacs with a crowd of people of ALL ages who laughed their asses off and hooted at every kill is the best thing in the world.
Special thanks to Peter Loewy of the Forum Theater, Tim Sullivan, John Raybin and the rest of the Maniacs crew, Tim’s mom, sister (pictured with Tim below) and Psycho Charger for being such awesome people … and to Pete, for driving me home because I was too drunk. Happy night.
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