Review: Street Trash

Synapse Films (Blu-ray)

Manhattan winos war with society and each other, as a bad batch of hootch starts killing them off one by one.

Two homeless brothers:

Fred, whom the Blu-ray case says is 18, but looks 35 (either inspired makeup or poor casting) is a rascally wino, a sneak-thief pocketing cheap liqueur and small amounts of money. I suppose he likes the life he lives; or at least prefers it to the alternative of getting a job and having to do what other people tell him to.

Kevin, the younger brother, is trying to be good.  He lives in an awesome fort made out of tires located in a junk yard.  He, along with a group of other homeless kids (whom I don’t think we ever see) are cared for by a kindly young woman named Wendy.

Wendy is the secretary at the junkyard, and is constantly fighting off the advances of her sweaty, would-be-rapist boss.  She’s pretty much the only likeable character in the movie.

Also living in the junkyard is a gang of homeless people led by a Vietnam war vet who keeps a one-woman harem.  These particular homeless people are bad, and spend a good five minute of the film playing keep-away with a man’s severed penis.  The homeless people in this film, Kevin aside, are not exactly shown in the best light.  For the most part, they’re barely civilized.

But I suppose the movie is mostly about Tenafly Viper, a brand of booze that the liqueur store owner finds in his basement.  It has the advantage of costing only one dollar, and the disadvantage of causing people to melt into a puddle of purple goo several seconds after digesting it.  This is kind of going on in the background as we watch the two brothers living their daily lives.  Fred actually comes into possession of a bottle of Viper several times throughout the movie, but tends to lose track of it.

The effects are pretty good, in a low-budget horror film sort of way.  It’s clearly home-made, and involves a lot of off-camera action and indistinguishable anatomy; but I respect the effort.

The plot is kind of all over the place. I can’t help but think the whole exercise was just a cover for someone’s desire to make a movie with melting people and occasional nudity.

But despite (or because) of it’s refusal to follow any of the rules of conventional filmmaking, it’s really fun to watch.  I mean, if you buy a movie called Street Trash, whose cover features a man flushing himself down the toilet; what exactly are you expecting?